Love Cannot Deliver the Goods

Second Question



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The second question:

Question 2


-- because they do. A constant procession of thoughts in your mind makes you blind. You cannot see beyond them. They create a fog. You become clouded. It is just like dust gathered on a mirror; then the mirror cannot reflect that which is. The dust has to be wiped off, washed; the mirror has to be made clean -- then it reflects. Otherwise how can it reflect? The dust will distort.

Thoughts are like dust. Thoughts are a continuous pre-occupation. For example, you are sitting under a tree and suddenly a cuckoo starts crying -- but you are absorbed in your thoughts. You will not hear the cuckoo. That beautiful song won't enter you. You are too full of your own thoughts, you don't have any space so it cannot enter you. It is simple arithmetic: if you want something to enter you, you have to give a little space. Your thoughts are filling your mind so much that nothing can enter.

A Zen Master was approached by a professor of philosophy. And the professor said, 'I have come to understand what truth is. What do you say?'

The professor had come uphill, was looking tired, perspiring. The Zen Master said, 'You sit. You rest a little and I will prepare tea for you. First things first. Then we can talk later on. And that is not important. Tea is more important than truth.

The professor could not believe it. Is this man mad? Tea is more important than truth?

But the Zen Master is right. What he means is, 'You are too tired and too full of thoughts. Let me help you to relax a little bit. Cool down, please.' That's what he is saying. He is saying, 'Don't be too much concerned about truth otherwise you will miss it.'

And then he prepares the tea, then he brings it and pours the tea -- and goes on pouring. The professor is holding his cup and saucer, the cup is full and the tea starts overflowing into the saucer but he keeps silent. But then he feels that now the tea is going to overflow onto the floor so he says, 'Stop! What are you doing? Why do you go on pouring? My cup is full and it cannot hold any more tea!'

And the Master said, 'You are so careful about your cup but you are not so careful about your mind. Your mind is so full. I see only junk and furniture in your mind, rotten furniture. And you want to invite truth? You will have to create a little space for truth to come in.'

Truth is the ultimate guest. You will have to empty yourself utterly, only then can truth come in. Thoughts are a pre-occupation. People who are too much in thoughts remain in a private kind of world. They have their own world of thoughts and dreams and projections and desires. They go on rushing here and there, but they don't look at the trees, the greenery, the flowers, the birds, the people, the children; they can't see anything.

I have heard a very old joke, but one of tremendous importance.

Michelangelo was working on his famous ceiling in the Sistine Chapel. For seven years he worked on a high stool. He was lying there the whole day on his back working on the ceiling. Many times he had seen that in the afternoons, when there was nobody in the church, a blind old woman used to come to pray. Somebody would bring her in and leave her there and for hours together she would sit and pray.

One day, one hot afternoon, he was not feeling like working so he turned on his stool and looked down. The old woman was there and there was nobody else. The church was utterly empty. And she was doing her usual prayer and tears were coming to her eyes. And Michelangelo felt like joking; he was in a joking mood.

He shouted from the top, 'I am Jesus Christ. What do you want? Just tell me and I will fulfil it.' He was expecting that the woman would say what she wanted. And the blind woman raised her face and her blind eyes and said, 'You shut up! I am not talking to you. I am talking to your mother!'

This is preoccupation. Who bothers about Jesus Christ? 'You shut up!' she said.

When you are in a certain thought or in a certain thought process you become closed. Only that much of a tunnel remains open. You move in that tunnel. And that tunnel of your thoughts has nothing to do with reality. It is your thought. It is just a vibe in your mind, just a vibration. That's why it is said that if you are too much in your thoughts you cannot know the truth.

All kinds of meditations presuppose one thing -- thoughtlessness. And this point has to be understood in reference to Sufism too. Just as there are thoughts in the mind so there are emotions in the heart. Thoughts have to go if you want knowing to arise, and if you want loving to arise in your heart then your sentimentality and your emotions have to go.

People are ready to accept that thoughts have to go -- then your intelligence is pure -- but they have not contemplated upon the second thing: that your heart is pure only when your emotions and your so-called sentiments have gone. Many people think sentimentality to be feeling, it is not. Thoughts are not in-telligence and sentimentality is not love. And there are only two ways. Sufis have two names. All the religions talk about two ways. sufis say the first way is MARIFA; MARIFA means the way of knowing. And the second way is mahaba; MAHABA means the way of love. These are what Hindus call JNANAMARGA and BHAKTIMARGA -- the way through intelligence or the way through love.

But both need one thing: if you are searching through intelligence then drop thinking so that intelligence can function unhindered; and if you are working through the path of love then drop emotionality, sentimentality, so that your love can function unhindered. Either you will see God through the heart, the mirror of the heart, or you will see God through the mirror of your intelligence. Both are perfectly good -- whatsoever you choose or whatsoever you feel is more in accord with you.

Half of the people of the world will follow MARIFA and half will follow MAHABA. It is exactly proportionate -- just as there are half women in the world and half men. The yin and yang is divided that way in many dimensions. The path of the heart is the feminine path and the path of intelligence, meditation, knowing, is the male path. But remember one thing -- you may be a male biologically, you may not be a male psychologically; you may be a female biologically, you may not be a female psychologically. You have to look into yourself psychologically. The physiology does not decide; the physiology is not decisive about it. Many women will find through knowing and many men will find through loving. So don't just take it for granted that because physiologically you have a male body then the path of knowledge is your path, no.

A man is both man and woman, and a woman is both man and woman. In many ways these two points meet. The only difference is of emphasis. And if you are a male in one way you will be a female in another way -- to compensate. If you are a woman in one way you will be a man in another way to compensate -- because the total unity has to be absolutely in equilibrium. All your women inside and all your men inside -- biological, physiological, psychological -- have to come to a synthesis otherwise you cannot exist. They all have to be absolutely balanced.

So look into your own self. Find out who you are. What gives you enthusiasm -- knowing or loving? What makes you ecstatic -- knowing or loving? What gives you a song in your being?

Now Albert Einstein cannot go through the path of MAHABA. His joy is his intelligence. And you can offer God only your joy, nothing else. That is the offering, the only offering. You cannot offer flowers from trees, you can offer only your flowering. Einstein has flowered as an absolutely beautiful intelligence -- that is the flower that he has to offer to God. That is his flower. In his own tree that flower has bloomed.

A Chaitanya or a Jesus, they are a different kind of people. Their heart has opened. They have flowered in love. They can offer their flower. You can only offer your flowering. And to flower you will have to remember to remove hindrances. A real intelligence is without preoccupation with thoughts. That's why all the great scientists say that whenever they have discovered something, they have discovered it not by thinking but when the thinking had stopped and there was an interval, a gap. In that gap was the insight -- the intuitiVe flash like lightning. When thought stops, your thinking is pure. It will look paradoxical. When thought stops -- let me repeat -- your thinking is pure, your capacity to reflect reality is pure. When emotions disappear, sentimentality disappears, then your love energy is pure.

Every seeker has to find it. If you cannot find it then ask your Master -- because sometimes it will be very confusing for you to decide. There are marginal cases who are forty-nine per cent feminine and fifty-one per cent male, or visa versa, and it is very difficult for them to decide who they are. And in the morning the proportion may be forty-nine per cent man, fifty-one per cent woman; in the evening the proportion may change. You are a flux. In the morning you may decide that you are on the path of love and by the evening you decide that you are on the path of knowing. In the morning everybody is more loving. By the evening it is very difficult to remain loving -- the world is too much. By the evening everybody hardens, everybody becomes a more solid rock.

That's why beggars beg in the morning not in the evening. They don't come in the evening because they know every door will be closed and they will be shouted out from everywhere. In the morning they can hope. People have relaxed in the night, dreamed beautiful dreams, have become children again, got lost into a dreamless state. The ego was forgotten. In the morning they are more fresh, innocent, young. You can trust that they will have some compassion. They may not give you anything but they will not shout you out. Or they may give.

Hence all the religions have prescribed prayer in the morning. In India we call that special moment BRAHMAMUHURT -- the moment of God, just before the sunrise. That is the best moment to pray. Why? Because the whole night you were out of the world, out of the competition, jealousy, possessiveness, hatred, anger; out of the mathematical, out of the calculating mind. You had become part of nature for those seven, eight hours. Your eyes will be more clean and your heart will be more fresh -- and a prayer is possible. By the evening it will become more and more difficult. Seeing the people and their dishonesty and seeing the cut-throat competition all around, the violence, the aggression, the war, the exploitation, the misery, that is being created by everybody for everybody else, one hardens, one loses heart.

If you cannot decide then ask your Master. The Master has many functions: one is -- the first, the beginning thing -- he has to decide for you because he can look deeper into you. He can see your potential. And sometimes it happens that on the surface you are one thing and potentially you are another. Sometimes it happens that a man looks very, very manly and deep inside he has a very soft heart. Maybe it is just because of the soft heart that he has created an armour around himself of strength, of aggression -- he is afraid of his own softness. He is afraid that that softness will make him vulnerable. He is afraid that if he opens his heart he will be exploited and cheated by everybody else, he will be nowhere in this competitive world. Being afraid of his softness he has become closed, he has put a China Wall around his heart. He has become very aggressive. He has become aggressive in the same proportion that he feels he is soft and vulnerable.

So if he thinks, he will think he is a very hard man, a warrior type, a very calculative man, and he may be misguided by his own armour, he may be deceived by his own deception. He had managed that deception for others, but this is one thing to be understood: you dig a ditch for others and finally you fall into it yourself.

Or there may be somebody who looks very, very feminine -- soft, graceful, elegant -- and deep down he may be a very dangerous man, an Adolf Hitler or a Benito Mussolini or a Genghis Khan. That too is possible, that too happens. When a person becomes so afraid of his own aggression and violence he creates a soft armour around himself, otherwise nobody will relate to him. He is afraid that nobody will relate to him so he becomes very polite, he learns much of etiquette, he is always bowing to people, always smiling so that nobody can see his violence which he is carrying like a poison, like a dagger. If you have a dagger you have to hide it, otherwise who is going to relate to you7 You cannot carry it continuously, you have to hide it somewhere. And once you have hidden it somewhere, by and by you your-self forget about it.

The first function of a Master is to look into your potentiality because that is decisive -- not your armour, not your character, not you on the surface, but you in the deepest core of your being. You as God has created you, not you as the society or you yourself have created you. Only from that point do things start growing.

If you start working on yourself with your armour you will never grow -- because armours can't grow, they are dead things. Only your being can grow. Structures don't grow, they are not alive. Only the life in you can grow -- life that has been a gift from God. But how are you going to see it?

You will need somebody who can see to the very depth of your being. And you will have to allow somebody to go into your depth, that's why surrender is needed. A Master will not be able to function if you are not surrendered. You will not open up, you will not allow him passage, you will protect yourself even against him, you will be defensive even against him, you will keep a distance, you will not allow him too close an approach to you. Then there is no possibility.

What is surrender? Surrender is only a trust that you are going to open your heart. It is a risk. Who knows what the Master will do to you? Certainly it is a risk. That's why religion is not allowed for those who are cowardly. And cowardly people are very cunning people -- they go on rationalising. They say, 'Why should I surrender? Why should I surrender to anybody?' They think that surrender is a kind of weakness. They are absolutely wrong. Surrender is possible only if you are very strong. To surrender needs great strength, great courage, great risk. Weak people cannot surrender. They cannot trust themselves so much and they cannot be courageous enough to open their hearts before somebody else.

Weaklings can never surrender, remember. Weaklings continuously go on fighting. They are afraid of their weakness. They know that they are weak. They cannot afford surrender -- only very strong people can. This is my experience here. Whenever a strong person comes to me he is always ready to take a jump, and whenever a weak coward comes he thinks and thinks and broods and finds rationalisations and explanations. And you can always find explanations, mind is very fertile for that. For lies the mind is very fertile; for truth it is impotent.

This is the beginning -- the Master has to look and decide what is your path; he has to decide what is going to be your TARIQA, the method; he has to decide in what direction you are going to move and from what point in your being you have to work.

And then there are a thousand and one functions. On each step of the journey there are problems -- because this journey is not like a plain highway. At each point there are diversions, at each point there are by-paths. It is a very zig-zag journey. It is almost a riddle. It is a labyrinth. Unless there is somebody who has gone the whole way and knows the way, there is a greater possibility that you will be lost somewhere, that you will take a wrong route. From each step the wrong route is available. And of a hundred routes, one is right, ninety-nine are wrong. This is the situation. You will need somebody to help you at each point of the journey.

But as you grow, trust will also grow. When you take the first step with the Master you will see something has happened. Then more trust naturally happens and something more becomes possible. Then something more happens, then more trust.... By and by trust becomes absolute and the disciple disappears. And the moment that the disciple has disappeared the disciple is born. Now there is not going to be any trouble. Now things will become very smooth. And now the journey will be a joy, it will not be an anxiety. Alone, it will create anguish.

And then at the ultimate point the Master is needed finally to give you a push -- because at the ultimate point everybody hesitates. It is death. The Sufis call it the great death. It is no ordinary death -- in ordinary death only the body dies. It is the great death. In this death even the self dies, you are utterly annihilated. That's why Buddha called this state nirvana-the blowing out of the candle. You are utterly annihilated. But only out of that annihilation does something arise.

A great Sufi Master, Master Farid Al-Din' Attar, relates the tale of the Phoenix. It is a symbolical, mythological tale of the ultimate utter death of the disciple.

The Phoenix is a wonderful bird. It has no mate and dwells in solitude. Its beak is long and hard, like a flute, and contains nearly one hundred holes. Each hole sounds a different tone, and each tone reveals a mystery. A mystic friend of the bird taught it the art of music.

When the Phoenix utters these sounds, all the birds of the sky and fish of the sea are affected. All the wild beasts are made silent by the entrancing music and experience of ecstasy.

The Phoenix lives about a thousand years. It knows the time of its death, and when this knowledge is tearing at its heart is gathers a hundred trees, heaps them in one spot, and begins a fire. It then places itself in the middle of the fire. Through each of the holes in its beak it sounds a plaintive cry, out of the depth of its soul it utters its dying lament, and then begins to tremble.

At the sound of the music all the birds-gather. The wild beasts assemble to be present at the death of the Phoenix. At this time they all become aware of their own death. When the moment arrives for it to draw its last breath, the Phoenix spreads its tail and feathers and with these it kindles a fire which spreads swiftly to the wood-pile and begins to blaze. Soon the fire and bird become one red-hot mass. When the glowing charcoal is reduced to ashes and only one spark remains, a new Phoenix arises into life.

But how can you trust that the new Phoenix is going to arise? You will be gone, you will be utterly gone. The Buddhists say: GATE, GATE, PARASAMGATE. You will be gone, gone, gone forever. But in that very going something is new. You release the energy, the old pattern disappears, but that eternal energy takes a new form, a birth. It is a resurrection. That is the last thing the Master has to do -- to help you die, to help you disappear.

Sufis say that without a Master there is no way, because without the Master it is almost an impossibility for a seeker to reach.



Next: Chapter 4, Love Cannot Deliver the Goods, The third question


Energy Enhancement          Enlightened Texts          Sufism          Sufis: The People Of The Path





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