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Baul Mystics

VOL. 1, THE BELOVED

Chapter-7

Dying with death, You must live to seek

 

 

Energy Enhancement          Enlightened Texts         Baul Mystics           The Beloved

 

 

COMMIT YOURSELF TO THE EARTH

WHILE ON THE EARTH,

MY HEART,

IF YOU WISH TO ATTAIN

THE UNATTAINABLE MAN.

PLACE AT HIS FEET

YOUR FLOWERS OF FEELINGS

AND THE PRAYERS OF TEARS

FLOODING YOUR EYES.

THE MAN YOU SEEK

IS EARTHED

IN THE EARTH,

DECEASED WHILE BEING.

DYING WITH DEATH,

YOU MUST LIVE TO SEEK....

THE RELIGION OF THE BAULS IS THE RELIGION OF THE EARTH. It's radical, because it pertains to the very roots of being. When I say it is the religion of the earth, I mean many things: it is the religion of the body, it is the religion of nature, it is the religion of reality. The Bauls don't believe in fantasy and they don't believe in some heavenly paradise; they don't believe in far-away goals, they are not utopians. They are very realistic people, down-to-earth. This is something very special in the world of religions, because ordinarily religions are nothing but wish-fulfillments, dreams of a suffering humanity. Because humanity is suffering it substitutes for reality by dreaming. A poor man can console himself that at least in the kingdom of God he will be the first. He can console himself with sayings like: Blessed are the meek because they shall inherit the earth; the poor in spirit are the people of God; those who are last will be the first in the kingdom of God. The poor man needs all these consolations.

Man is afraid of death. He needs to be again and again reassured that he is a soul, deathless, immortal; only the body dies, not you. Man is suffering a thousand and one complexities. The whole life is almost an oceanic sadness, suffering, sorrow. It is difficult to bear it. Dreams are needed, hopes of a better future, of a better world, are needed. Maybe it is beyond death, but just the idea that it is there waiting for you and the suffering is only for today, you pass it somehow; you believe in tomorrow. Sooner or later you will be relieved of it. Ordinary religions are the religions of tomorrow. They simply indicate that because man lives in suffering, man needs dreaming.

The religion of the Bauls is very down-to-earth; it believes in the here-now. It does not say that paradise is somewhere else; it is here, and you cannot postpone it, and all postponement is dangerous, suicidal. If you cannot discover it here-now, you will never discover it anywhere else because you will remain the same. And whenever you will be, life will always come in the form of here-now. So the only door to reality is here, this very moment.

The Bauls say, "This is the reality and there is no that." They don't divide reality into two: they don't say illusory and the real, they don't say MAYA and BRAHMA, they don't say this and that. They say, "This is all." This moment is total, and all division is dangerous because reality is nowhere divided; it is indivisible.

Hence, they don't talk about a God somewhere sitting in the seventh heaven. They talk about a totally different God -- rooted in you, rooted here in the earth, rooted in this body, rooted in these emotions, lust and love, rooted here in tension and stress. The God of the Bauls is a very real God. You can touch Him, you can love Him, you can embrace Him, you live with Him, you can live Him. It is not far away, it is very close; closer than close, because it is you. They don't use the word 'God' at all. Their word for God is ADHAR MANUSH, the essential man. Man himself is divine. If you enter yourself you will be entering God. If you enter this world you will be entering God.

This does not mean that there is no God. This is a radical standpoint, but not negation. It is a very revolutionary attitude, but not negative. It does not mean that God does not exist. In fact, it means that God exists here, now, and the responsibility is yours to discover Him. And there is no alibi, there is no excuse to postpone.

In Chinese, Taoists have reached to the same viewpoint: they dropped the very word 'God'. They started using the word, 'CHI'LAN'. CHI'LAN means nature; that is God. CHI'LAN means that which happens of itself, that which is already happening, that which has always been happening and will go on happening. That is the meaning of the word 'Tao' also. In the Vedas, Hindus have a beautiful word: they call it RITAMBH. That is exactly what Tao or CHI'LAN is. RITAMBH means nature, not God -- because whenever you say 'God', somehow it is always somewhere else, not here; at least not in you, not in your neighbor. The earth seems to be not worthy enough for God to be here.

Jainas and Buddhists use the word DHAMMA -- that exactly means nature. The Sanskrit word DHARMA also means nature. It is not equivalent to the English word 'religion'; no, not at all. In fact, both are polar opposites. Religion means that which binds you, gives you a certain organization -- a church -- gives you a certain belonging. DHARMA means that which frees you from all churches, from all organizations. DHARMA is individual, religion is social. Religion belongs to the collective crowd, religion does not belong to the individual. Christianity, Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism, are all religions; they are not DHARMAS. DHARMA has no adjective to it. Everybody has to discover his own DHARMA; everybody has to discover his own nature.

The Bauls' attitude that God is here in you has to be understood as deeply as possible, because there is no other God. In fact, because religions have been talking about a God somewhere else, that's why the world has become more and more godless. Because the God that is not here and cannot be touched and cannot be seen and cannot be lived with, cannot be very appealing. As man grows to be mature, that God will start disappearing, withering away. Whenever man becomes very mature, those gods of the dreams will disappear and man will be left without God. That's what has happened to this age. It is not because of atheists that man has become godless, it is because of a wrong notion of God.

Marx could condemn the God of the Christians, Marx cannot condemn the God of the Bauls. Scientists can deny the God of the so-called religious, but scientists cannot deny the God of the Baul -- because he never proposes anything dreamlike. He is simply realistic.

I have heard a beautiful anecdote.

A commissar in Russia asked a peasant how the new potato-crop-production plan was coming under their glorious leader.

Said the peasant, "Our potato crop has been miraculous. If we were to put all the potatoes in a pile, they would make a mountain reaching to the feet of God."

'But you know there is not any God," said the commissar.

"I know," said the peasant, "but there are not any potatoes either."

A God in the sky is a false God. Not that the sky is without God, no; the sky is as full of God as the earth. But the first understanding of God is going to be rooted in the earth. The first understanding has to be of the roots, and out of those roots your understanding will grow and spread to the farther corners of existence. But the journey starts at home. It starts deep within you. The first glimpse of God has to be in the innermost shrine of your heart. If you have not seen Him there, you can go on talking about Him, but you will not ever be able to see Him anywhere. The first encounter has to happen within you. Once it happens, you will be surprised that you start seeing God everywhere. Once you have seen Him within your heart, how can you miss Him. -- because everywhere the heart is throbbing with Him. The tree is full of Him and the rock also, and the river and the ocean, and the animals and the birds, everywhere. Once you have felt His pulse, once you have felt Him circulating in your own blood, once you have had an experience in your own marrow, then everywhere, wherever you look you will find Him. But, it cannot happen otherwise. If you are empty of His experience, you can go to the farthest corner of the world; your travelling will be in vain. You will never reach His temple because you missed the very root of it. You missed Him at home. If your own house does not become His temple, then no temple can be His abode. If your own house has become His temple, then all houses are His abode.

When the Bauls say that one has to be very earth oriented, they don't mean that the sky is empty of God. But they say, "If the earth is not full, then the sky is absolutely empty. If even the earth is not full, how can the sky be full of Him? If He is not here, how can He be there? If He is not this, how can He be that? If He is not today, how can He be tomorrow? If He is not in this life, how can He be in the next?" Their logic is simple and irrefutable.

But man has created a God in the skies. Why? This God is not a real God, it is a substitute -- because you are missing Him here, and you are missing Him so tremendously that you have to put Him somewhere or other. Otherwise you will feel very alone. You will feel so lonely that you will miss the meaning of life. And it is good to put Him very far away, because then there is no hurry. The journey is so far that you cannot complete it today. Even this life is not enough, so enough space to postpone, enough space to say, "Yes, one day I will do," enough space to pretend that you are interested in Him and continuing to be of the world, and going on talking at the same time about God. This is the double-talk, the double-bind of ordinary humanity. People talk about God and live according to the devil. They go to the temple but they never reach. They read the Bible, they read the Koran, but they never listen. These are pretensions, only on the surface. This is how the hypocritical humanity is born -- a false, pseudo-humanity.

I have heard....

Mulla Nasrudin went to his psychiatrist once and said, "Doctor, I wonder if you can split my personality for me?"

"Why? Why would you want to do that?" asked the doctor, surprised.

"Because," said the Mulla, "I am so lonesome."

Man feels very alone without God, and to find the real God is arduous. It is very easy to create a pseudo-God which looks like God, which appears like God. It at least gives consolation that you are not alone. Have you watched your concept of God? Has it arisen out of the experience of your own being, or has it arisen out of your experience of your loneliness? This is the criterion: if you believe in God because you feel lonely, your God is going to be false; if you believe in God because you have experienced Him in your aloneness, if it has come out of your own being, then the God is real. Then let Nietzsche declare that God is dead; your God can never be dead. Your God is alive in you. How can Nietzsche declare that God is dead? But he could declare, and not only declare; his declaration became a prophecy. Within a hundred years, his declaration has become a reality. The God of the churches is dead, the God of the temples is dead, the God of the books is dead. Nobody has ever been so prophetic as Nietzsche has been. God is disappearing; the very word has become ugly.

Just the other day I was reading a Christian priest's book. I was surprised, because I have heard about cases in which, particularly in India, people, if they want to read Playboy, hide it in their Gita or in their Bible and read it. That I have heard. But that Christian says that he was so afraid to read the Bible that he was hiding his Bible behind the cover of a Playboy magazine! It has come to happen in the West. So when he would go every Sunday to his beauty parlor, he would take his Bible. But afraid that others might see that he was reading the Bible, so out of date, he would hide it in a Playboy magazine and would read his Bible there.

One day in the Bible he came across Jesus' saying: If you deny me, remember, at the last day of judgment I will also deny you. So he became afraid because this was a sort of denial -- reading the Bible behind the cover of Playboy. He became so afraid that he started perspiring, because Jesus says, "If you deny me, then before God I will not recognize you." So he threw away the Playboy magazine and he felt so good. He went to his priest and said, "Today I have done a great deed. I gathered courage to let people know that I read the Bible."

God IS dead, MUST be dead. Have you watched yourself? -- if you are carrying a Bible you feel a little awkward. Or, if you are going to the temple you start finding excuses: that you are going because your wife has gone and there is some work to be done, or your father is there, or you are just going for formality's sake; it is just social. Have you watched how things change?

I was reminded when I was reading this of a beautiful story.

One dacoit, a great robber, became interested in the American ways of dacoity. Everybody has to be interested now, because everybody in his own profession is trying to go to America. Doctors are going, engineers are going, so the dacoit thought, "Why not us? We can also learn the modern techniques." So he went to America, he joined a gang, and he was watching and observing what they were doing, the modern techniques. He was surprised, because first they kidnapped a beautiful woman, and then they wrote. But he said, "This is okay, because we also do the same in India: we kidnap a woman and then we write a letter to the husband that if within three days he doesn't give fifty thousand rupees, then we will kill his wife." So he wondered, "But what is new in it?" Then he looked at what they were writing in the letter. He was surprised; he said, "What are you doing?" -- because in the letter they were writing, "If within three days you don't send us fifty thousand dollars, we will send your wife back."

The world has tremendously changed. People used to read Playboys hiding them in their Bible covers, but now they are hiding their Bibles in Playboy covers. Nietzsche was right -- God is dead. But the real God cannot die; that is impossible. To say that God is dead is to say that life is dead. If God means life, then the statement 'God is dead' is simply stupid, meaningless, contradictory -- because life is that which lives, that which goes on living.

The Bauls would laugh. They would say, "Then you have not understood the real God. Yes, your God is dead because he was false, but the God of the Bauls is not dead, cannot be dead, because we never talked about God -- we talk about life, love. If all the temples were destroyed and all the mosques and GURUDWARAS were burnt, nothing would happen to God. Because the God enshrined there is not the real God. The God enshrined in you is the real God, and that cannot be destroyed. Life cannot be destroyed; life goes on. It is an eternal river."

But man feels lonely. In his loneliness he creates fantasies, dreams. Man has become so lonely that he finds solace in any way, anywhere. It is unfortunate. But this is no way to find the real.

I was reading one anecdote:

Ira quit college, got himself a backpack and began hitchhiking around the United States. After he had been gone more than a year he telephoned home. "Hello, Ma, how are you?"

"Just fine, son. When are you coming home? I will fix you some chopped liver and chicken soup and a beautiful potroast. "

"I'm still pretty far away."

"Oh, son!" cried the desperate woman.''Just come home, and I will fix your favorite -- oatmeal cookies."

"I don't like oatmeal cookies," said the boy.

"You don't?" asked the woman.

"Say," said Ira, "is this Century 5-7682?"

"No."

"Then I must have the wrong number."

"Does that mean you are not coming home, boy?" asked the woman.

People are really lonely. Even if it is not your son, at least somebody is coming. You can pretend, you can believe, you can console.

The God that exists in the temples is not a real God. That God that exists in the sky is your projection; the real God is within you. That which you are seeking is not somewhere else, it is in your very seeking. It is in the very seeker -- the sought is in the seeker. You are the truth, alive, in flesh. God is reborn in you, God is incarnated in you, God has taken a body in you. Where are you seeking, where are you going? The Bauls say, "Wait, listen, go within."

They sing,

The God is living in man,

wholly intermingled.

Oh, my unseeing heart,

your eyes are unwise!

How then can you locate

the treasured man?

The unseen man

dwelling in the brilliance of light

hides his identity

from those blinded by stupor.

He is stationed in man,

appearing and vanishing

as the eyelids blink.

They go on singing again and again:

All of us in different ways

think of God

beyond senses and feelings.

And yet it is only

in the essence of loving

that God is found.

On the other shore of the ocean

of one's own self

quivers a drop of fluid

as the origin of all.

The root of all is based in you.

Explore the base

to reach the essence,

release the sensation of taste

on your tongue,

open the doors of feeling

for the Beloved.

Nectar, showering on

the lotus of spontaneity,

lust and love are housed

in one single place,

where sorrows and joys do not exist.

They believe in man. They believe in the tremendous potentiality of man. They believe that man is the shrine of God. They believe in the body. No religion except Tantra has ever endeavored to understand this miraculous happening of consciousness located in the body, of consciousness residing in the body. All the other religions have remained anti-body, anti-life, life-negative, body-negative -- as if the more you destroy your body, the more you become divine, or the more you come close to God. Bauls say, "If you destroy the body, you destroy the very base. If you destroy sensation, you destroy sensitivity. If you destroy your senses, then how will you taste Him, how will you hear Him, how will you see Him? If you destroy your love, how will you love Him? If you destroy your passion, then you will be impotent."

They have a really revolutionary religion to preach to the world. They are very illiterate people, but of great insight. Maybe that's why they are so full of insight, because they are illiterate...because they don't know much about scriptures, and they don't know much about philosophy and metaphysics. Because they cannot read the books they read their own bodies; because they cannot understand conceptualizations they try to find out who they are; because they cannot be very learned -- poor beggars moving from one village to another, singing and dancing, enjoying -- they have come very close to reality.

They are very authentic, uncorrupted by nature, society, education. They are very innocent people. And this is their understanding: that body is divine. Body is sacred, because everything is sacred. But this word 'sacred' is not very good. In the Old Testament, the word 'sacred' comes from a root which means the separate. God is called sacred in the Old Testament because He is a separate reality from this reality.

Bauls would laugh. They will say, "You have gone insane! There is no separate reality. God is THIS reality." Bauls make the whole reality sacred, holy, divine. Their vision is so vast that even matter is no longer thought of as matter. Even matter, in their vision, becomes luminous. Even body is not just body -- it is of the earth, but it carries the divine within it.

I have heard about a Hassid rabbi: Rabbi Bonum was his name. When he was dying he left this last message for his disciples. He said, "Everyone must have two pockets, so that he can reach into one or the other according to his needs. In his right pocket are to be the words: For my sake was the world created; and in his left: I am nothing but earth."

Beautiful it is. He is saying: Man is nothing but earth -- keep this message in one pocket; and in the other: The whole world is created for me. I am the God of the whole world -- keep this message in the other pocket. Both messages are true because one shows the reality, the other shows the potentiality. One shows the fact, the other shows the truth.

The fact is that we are made of earth; the truth is that we are made in His image. We are both -- God enshrined in earth. We are of the earth, and yet, there is a great passion inside us to rise to the highest sky. Look at the trees -- what are they doing? They come from the earth, they belong to the earth, they are rooted in the earth, and they are trying to reach to the sun, trying to reach to the stars. Rooted in the earth, they move towards heaven. That is the Baul symbol: the tree rooted in the earth, reaching towards heaven; rooted in the body, reaching towards the soul.

Then these two are not contraries; they are both of one process, of one dynamic force.

Just before the Zen Master, Baso, was dying at the age of sixty, he sat up in the lotus posture, and to those gathered around him said, "Don't be misled. Look directly. What is this?" He repeated it loudly, and calmly died.

Let me repeat what he said: "Don't be misled. Look directly. What is this?" He repeated it loudly, then calmly died. THIS conveys the whole meaning; the very directness of it. There is no THAT. THIS is THAT! This is so vast, there is no need for any that to exist. This implies all that.

"Don't be misled," he said -- because the greatest misguidance comes from people who separate God from reality, who separate truth from fact, who separate spirit from body, who separate lust from love, who separate mud from the lotus. They are the great misguiders of the world.

They are the poisoners, because once they have made it clear to your mind, conditioned your mind that the lotus can never be of the mud, they have destroyed the very possibility of the lotus. Then you can have a plastic lotus; but a real lotus, never -- because the real lotus is always rooted in the mud. It is part of the mud, it is a flowering of the mud. It is earth come to its glory; it is earth's essence. Once you can see lust and love as one, passion and compassion as one, body and soul as one -- maybe two rhythms of the same energy, two formations of the same force, two concretizations of the same stuff, but the stuff is the same -- if you can see the world and God just like mud and lotus, lust and love, you have the vision of the Baul.

If you don't have that vision, there is every possibility that you will be misled. And the misguiders are very cunning; they are great rationalizers. They can convince you, they can argue for their standpoint.

I have heard....

Mistress Goldfarb walked into a kosher butcher shop, asked the owner for a fresh chicken, and immediately began inspecting it. She lifted the wing, stuck her nose underneath and dedared, "Phew! It smells!" Then she pulled up a leg, sniffed and said, "Phaugh!" After smelling the hind end, Mistress Goldfarb held her nose and exclaimed, "It stinks! You call this a fresh chicken?"

"Tell me, lady," said the butcher, "you could stand such an inspection?"

These people who go on condemning the world, condemning the body, condemning everything, just ask them, "Will your God be able to stand all this inspection?" Then nothing is left, because all reality is condemned. Then just a concept, an abstraction is left. Yes, abstraction cannot be condemned because then God will not stink. Then He will not perspire because He will have nothing to do with the earth. Then His hands will not be muddy; then He will be just an abstraction.

Have you noticed the fact that all religions have tried to convince the world that their founders were almost unreal? Jainas say Mahavir never perspired, because how can a man of God perspire? Ordinary humanity perspires, not Mahavir. They say that Mahavir was hit, but blood never came out of his body. What came out of his body?. -- milk. How could blood have come out Mahavir's body, this ordinary humanity? Now they are trying to put Mahavir on such a pedestal that he is bound to become unreal. Then if people come and they say, "We don't believe in your Mahavir, he seems just a myth," they are right. How can he be real? Reality you deny, you condemn.

The same has happened with all the great Masters of the world: followers try to make them unreal. Followers are always afraid because if the hands of their Masters look dirty....'Dirty' is not a dirty word, remember; it comes from 'dirt'. It simply says earthly, earthy. A gardener works in the garden; his hands are dirty -- not dirty, just dirt is there -- but dirt is good. We are made of dirt, we are made of dust. The word 'human' comes from HUMUS; HUMUS means the earth. The word 'Adam' also comes from ADAMUS; ADAMUS means the earth. "We are made of earth"; that's what Bauls say. We are made of earth but not made only of earth. We are made of earth, but deep inside is enshrined the divine.

You must have seen earthen lamps in India. They are made of earth, but the flame is not of the earth. The lamp is of the earth, the lamp belongs to the earth, and the flame is continuously running upwards, upwards, and upwards, towards the divine. Man is an earthen lamp -- made of earth, yet enshrining the divine flame.

The Bauls are very down-to-earth realists. They have a beauty in their great vision. They are not denyers: they don't say no to the world. Remember, if you say no to the world too much, sooner or later your God will be just an abstraction -- because the very no to the world will go on reducing God's reality. Whatsoever you say no to will be a reduction of your God. By and by, when you have said no to the whole world, God is nothing but a concept, a word: empty, impotent, just a container without any content. The reality is earthly.

The world has been denied and God has been put as if He is an opposite force, as if He is against the world. Now look at the absurdity: these same people go on saying, "God created the world." He cannot be against it, otherwise why should He create it? The creator cannot be against His own creation. The very creation is a proof that God loves it -- the creation is His appreciation, the creation is His play, the creation is His love, His vocation. God creates the world because He loves it.

Gurdjieff used to say that all the religions are against God because they are against His creation. How can you be for the poet if you are against his poetry? How can you be for the man if you are against his character? How can you be for the painter if you are against his painting? Gurdjieff seems to be very logical, absolutely right: religions seem to be against God. They talk about God, but they are against Him because they are against His world. They teach you to deny the world; but you cannot deny it because you are rooted in it. Then what happens? -- you become pseudo, you become false, you become a pretender, you become double faced. You have one face to show to the world, and another face to live with. This is an emergency measure; man could not do anything else.

What to do? You cannot deny the reality, and you cannot allow it, and you cannot accept it -- because your religions teach you to be against it. So, man has found the golden mean: don't deny it in reality, just go on denying it in words. Show that you deny it, that's all. Pay your respects to God and go on living reality.

Religions have not helped man to become sane. They have helped man to become insane, neurotic, split.

It happened in a church:

A man was confessing. "And how much of that stack of hay did you steal, Kavanagh?" the priest asked at confession.

"I might just as well confess to the whole stack, your Reverence," said Kavanagh. "I am going after the rest of it tonight."

He's confessing, and yet he's planning to do the same thing again this night. Then why confess? No, he is putting himself at ease because people say 'this is bad' and 'this is sin', and people have made a virtue of confession -- as if confession in itself is a virtue. Unless it is authentic, it is meaningless.

It happened on a road:

A Protestant minister was given a brand new car by his congregation, and he was driving it through downtown Dublin. Suddenly the car in front of him came to a screeching stop, and the minister crashed into it. The furious clergyman climbed out and stormed up to the car in front of him with murder in his eyes. Then he noticed that the driver of the other vehicle was a Catholic priest.

"Your Reverence,'' said the minister through clenched teeth, "were it not for the fact that I am a man of the cloth, I would be tempted to thrash you within an inch of your life."

"Your Reverence," said the priest, sticking his head out the window, "were it not that I too am a man of the cloth, and that it happens to be a Friday, I would be tempted to bite your balls."

This is how the whole effort of all religion has made man just pretentious, hypocritical. Their reality is something different; their masks are absolutely different. Bauls are against it. They say, "Love the world and find your God through that love, so that there is no division created in you. "

Man had to become a hypocrite; it became just a safety measure. Religions have not left any possibility, any way for him to be real. Now look at the absurdity: they go on teaching 'be true', and their whole teaching creates untruth. On the one hand they teach you to be true, to be authentic, and on the other hand their whole teaching creates such a situation that if you want to be true you will have to commit suicide; you cannot live. Either commit suicide if you want to be true but then what is the point of being true if you commit suicide? You will not be here to be true. If you want to live, you will have to be untrue. But the fault is not with you; the fault is in the whole program that has been fed into your brain. The whole program is faulty.

Man has to be real, real to reality. Whatsoever the reality, man has to accept it and live it in deep gratitude, and live it with such reverence, respect -- because it is God's reality. It is His temple.

When Moses reached on the mount where he encountered God, he saw a fire burning under a bush. And the bush was not burnt; the bush was as green as ever and flames were coming out of it. He could not believe his eyes. He started moving towards the bush; he was almost magnetized by what he saw. Then suddenly God shouted, "Moses! Take your shoes off! You are walking on holy ground."

I have always loved that parable. But I say to you, not only on Mount Sinai, but wherever you are walking, you are walking on holy ground -- because all is His ground, because all is He.

The Beloved is present in so many forms. Lust is also His, love is also His. Bauls say, "Don't deny anything because denial is an irreverence. It is a rejection of God."

One day I saw that Mulla Nasrudin was teaching his son to be able to defend himself, so he taught him the finer points of boxing.

I asked him, "But suppose, Mulla, he comes up against a bigger kid who also knows how to box? Then what?"

"I have already thought of that," said Nasrudin, "so I am teaching him how to run too."

On one hand we go on teaching people to be true, and on the other hand, in a subtle way, we go on teaching them not to be true. Each child is made neurotic by the parents, by the society; and we know that we are doing it, and we know that others have done the same to us. Stop doing it to yourself and stop doing it to others. Become alert. Just be real. I emphasize reality more than truth. Because truth has been used by the anti-life people so much, it has wrong associations. Be real. If you are real, one thing will start disappearing from your heart, and that is guilt.

One psychoanalyst and therapist, Shepard, has coined a word:'unguilting'. I like the word. Real religion is always a process of unguilting; false religions are always a process of guilting. They try to make you more and more guilty: anger is there, lust is there, sex is there, greed is there, attachment is there, hate is there, love is there -- and everything is condemned. You become guilty, you start feeling wrong; you are wrong, you start feeling condemned, you start hating yourself. If you start hating yourself you will never be able to find God, because He is hiding in you.

Unguilt; drop all guilt! Whatsoever you are, whosoever you are, wheresoever you are, God has accepted you. When God has accepted you, why be worried?. -- accept yourself. Start living your life not through concepts; start living your life through your feelings, emotions, your body. Start living life as if you were never corrupted by any society, as if you have just come new into the world directly from God's hands and nobody has taught you anything. Start living: that life is the real life. Then you listen to your own heart, you listen to your body. You don't repress, you try to understand; and through understanding is transformation.

The Bauls sing the song for today:

COMMIT YOURSELF TO THE EARTH

WHILE ON THE EARTH,

MY HEART,

IF YOU WISH TO ATTAIN

THE UNATTAINABLE MAN.

Commit yourself to the earth -- don't be committed to some heaven somewhere else, be committed to the here and now, to the reality that is your surround. Be committed to your humanity, to the earth that is just below you: commit yourself to the earth while on the earth.

Bauls say, "We will think -- when we have moved to heaven and gone to the other world, then we will see. Once you have learned how to be committed to the here and now, there also you will be committed." Because whenever future comes, it always comes as the present. Even the other world will come as this world. Have you seen that you move from one shore of a river to the other, and when you reach closer to the other shore, the other shore becomes this shore, and the first shore that used to be this shore becomes that shore? So wherever you are, you are surrounded by this-ness.

I have heard....

Once Mulla Nasrudin drank too much, and was walking on a road, zig-zagging from this side to that. He was asking people, "Where is the other side of the road?"

Somebody said, "The other side is there."

He went there and he asked people, "Where is the other side of the road?" And they said, "The other side is there."

He said, "These people seem to be very foolish. When I go to that side, people say the other side is there. When I come here, people say the other side is there. Are they mad?"

The other side is always there. And wherever you are, you are always here; this-ness surrounds you.

Just the other day I quoted one very great saying of Udallak to his son, Swetketu -- ''That art thou"; TATWAMASI SWETKETU. The Bauls would like to make a little change in it. They would say, "THIS art thou" -- not that, because THAT gives a far away idea of God. THIS is more earthly.

COMMIT YOURSELF TO THE EARTH

WHILE ON THE EARTH,

MY HEART,

IF YOU WISH TO ATTAIN

THE UNATTAINABLE MAN.

That unattainable man, the ADHAR MANUSH, the essential man; if you want to attain it, then be committed to the here and now. Be committed to the present, be committed to the reality that is available to you in this moment. There is no other commitment.

PLACE AT HIS FEET

YOUR FLOWERS OF FEELINGS

AND THE PRAYERS OF TEARS

FLOODING YOUR EYES.

They are very real people. They say 'the flowers of feelings'. Ordinary flowers won't do. You can pick flowers from the trees and go to the God of your temple and put those flowers there, but the God is abstract, the flowers borrowed. In fact, they were more in tune with God on the trees. They were more in tune with God on the trees -- at least they were alive. You have not made them closer to God, you have killed them.

When I used to live in Jabalpur I had a very beautiful garden, and I was a victim, a continuous victim of religious people. Because there used to be two temples just close by, so any worshippers would come, and without asking they would start picking flowers. In that part of the country it is thought that if somebody is picking flowers for his God, it is not good to prevent it. So I had to put up a notice, because if I prevented them they would say, "These are for religious purposes." I had to put up a notice: You can pick for any other purpose, but not for religious purposes -- because, as I see it, the flowers are more surrendered to God on the plants, alive. You will kill them. Your God is bogus and you will kill the flowers. This whole worship is pseudo.

The Bauls say 'your flowers of feelings place at his feet': your love, your compassion, your understanding, your lived experiences, your visions, your taste, your richness. "Place at his feet your flowers of feelings and the prayers of tears'-' -- because words won't do. How can words become prayers? Words are dead things: they don't mean much. Yes, there is much noise in them, but they don't mean much. Silent tears would be better. So you can find Bauls standing by the side of the road crying, and if you ask, "What are you doing?" they will say, "Praying." And you don't see any shrine, no temple, not even a tree-god. They are just standing on the road, crying. You will ask, "Where is your God?" and they will say, "Everything! Everywhere He is. Whenever the right moment is available to pray, whenever I feel in a receptive moment, that is the right moment to pray. I'm praying." With tears they pray, with dance they pray, with singing they pray, but their prayer is very alive.

The Bauls say,

With a beggar's humility

I have come to your doors.

No one is ever turned away

from your home of unending stores.

You have all the riches,

and so much have you given

without my demand.

No more do I need any wealth,

O my Master,

give me your feet!

"No more do I need any wealth, O my Master, give me your feet" -- just your feet are enough, so I can cry, so my tears can wash your feet.

PLACE AT HIS FEET

YOUR FLOWERS OF FEELINGS

AND THE PRAYERS OF TEARS

FLOODING YOUR EYES.

THE MAN YOU SEEK

IS EARTHED IN THE EARTH,

DECEASED WHILE BEING.

DYING WITH DEATH,

YOU MUST LIVE TO SEEK...

The man you seek is earthed, is incarnated in the body. The body is your earth. And the man you seek is here, enshrined in the earth, enshrined in death: the flame of life enshrined in death...so don't be afraid of the earth, and don't be afraid of death; they make it possible for you to live. Life is possible only because of death, soul is possible only because of the body. The tree is possible only because of the roots, so don't be afraid of the roots, and don't be afraid of death. Don't be afraid of the body. Accept this reality.

DYING WITH DEATH,

YOU MUST LIVE TO SEEK...

Live when life is there. Be committed to the earth while on the earth; die when death comes. Move with life and move with death. Dying, don't cling to life. Dying, don't resist death; dying, die. Living, live; dying, die. Let the moment be total. Float with it, be committed to it. When death comes, then don't be sad. Then accept death. Then accept it with such totality that even death cannot kill you.

A total person cannot be killed, and a divided person never lives. A total person is already beyond death. Totality is beyond death. Divided, separated, falling into parts, not together, you just look alive but you are not alive. Dying, die; surrender to death. Now it is God who has come as death.

For the Baul everything is divine -- life, death. Nothing is undivine. The devil does not exist.

You must have heard the parable in Jesus' life that when Mary Magdalene came to see him, she was possessed by seven demons. He touched her and all the seven demons rushed, ran towards the sea and drowned themselves there. Now this parable is very significant. The word 'demon' comes from a root which means division. If you transiate this parable into psychological terms, it simply means Mary Magdalene was divided into seven parts. Jesus touched her, she became total, unpossessed; the demons disappeared. Demons mean divisions.

The Baul lives an undivided life; he never divides. He is not against anything, he is not for anything; he simply lives. Whatsoever comes in the moment, he lives it. He is surrendered to reality; that is his prayer. Death comes, he yields beautifully, gracefully. He dies. He cooperates with death. There is not a little bit of resistance, not even a little bit. He is not fighting; he embraces death.

DYING WITH DEATH,

YOU MUST LIVE TO SEEK....

And then he goes on and on. His search is unending. God can never be totally known because He is infinite. We can go on knowing Him more and more and more. We go on coming closer and closer and closer, but God is not a goal. Nobody can say, "I have arrived." If somebody says it, then something is wrong. The Upanishads say the one who says "I have known God", has not known -- because how can you know the eternal? Yes, you can live Him, you can love Him, you can be in Him, but you cannot know Him -- because knowledge will become a definition, knowledge will make Him finite. That which is known totally becomes finite, but God remains unknowable. The more you know, the more doors open, the more mysteries open. Then each death is a closing of the past and a new vision of the future.

DYING WITH DEATH, YOU MUST LIVE TO SEEK.... and one goes on seeking. The pilgrimage is eternal.

The Bauls sing,

SHUT THE DOORS ON THE FACE OF LUST,

ATTAIN THE GREATEST, THE UNATTAINABLE MAN,

AND ACT AS THE LOVERS ACT:

MEET THE DEATH BEFORE YOU DIE.

To die with death is possible only if you have met death before you die. Otherwise it will be difficult. You need some acquaintance. If death comes and you are not acquainted with it, it will be difficult for you to surrender. That is what meditation is all about: meeting death before you die; making a few acquaintances, a few encounters with death, so you start loving the beauty of it, so you start falling in love with it, so you can see the divine face even in death. Only a meditator can die without fighting, otherwise fight is unconscious. It is not that you will fight; you will find yourself fighting, and it will be almost impossible for you not to fight. Resistance is unconscious, it is built in.

Meditate or love, because these are the two ways to be acquainted with death. If you love, it is a small death. If you love very deeply, it is a great death. If you are really in love, you are no more the same as you were before. Something has disappeared; you are reborn. Love is a rebirth. So, many times in life, through meditation and love, you should become acquainted with death so that when death really comes you know the guest so well that you are not afraid. You can welcome the guest, you can receive the guest with great love, with great rejoicing, celebration.

The Bauls say about the ADHAR MANUSH, the essential man:

Poison and ambrosia

are one and the same to him.

He is dead while wholly living.

If you become acquainted with death through love and meditation, by and by you will see that life and death are two aspects of the same coin; poison and ambrosia are two aspects of the same coin; matter and mind -- two aspects of the same coin; good and bad, all dualities -- two aspects of the same coin. Then you are not worried. Then you don't choose. Then you live a life of choiceless awareness. Then all is the same. If you choose life you have chosen death. If you avoid death you will avoid life -- so there is no point in choosing, and there is no point in avoiding. One simply waits and accepts whatsoever gift comes from God's grace.

This is what Bauls call: He is dead while wholly living. He is absolutely alive and yet, in a sense, dead, because all dualities have come into him and become a synthesis. He is wholly dead and wholly alive. You are neither alive nor dead; you are in a limbo.

The perfect man is both together. In him, all dualities are transcended. He is tremendously enriched because life goes on pouring into him, death also goes on pouring into him. Whatsoever life can give, he accepts; whatsoever death can give, he accepts. Whatsoever happiness gives he accepts, and whatsoever unhappiness gives he accepts.

And remember, there are treasures hidden in unhappiness also, as there are treasures hidden in happiness. If you have known only treasures of happiness, then you have not known much. If you have known only treasures of joy you have not known much; there are treasures of sadness also. There are a few treasures which only sadness can give to you. There are treasures of laughter and treasures of tears.

The Bauls say that one should be so capable that one allows all dualities to merge and come into oneself. Then only is the essential man revealed. And the essential man is the God of the Bauls.

COMMIT YOURSELF TO THE EARTH

WHILE ON THE EARTH,

MY HEART,

IF YOU WISH TO ATTAIN

THE UNATTAINABLE MAN.

PLACE AT HIS FEET

YOUR FLOWERS OF FEELINGS

AND THE PRAYERS OF TEARS

FLOODING YOUR EYES.

THE MAN YOU SEEK

IS EARTHED

IN THE EARTH,

DECEASED WHILE BEING.

DYING WITH DEATH,

YOU MUST LIVE TO SEEK....

 

Next: Chapter 8, The body is an abode, First Question

 

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