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Chapter-2

THE YOGA SUTRAS OF PATANJALI

Where did we come from and how did we

Sixth Question

 

Question 6

CAN YOU TALK ABOUT THE BRAHMIN HABIT OF TAKING SEVERAL BATHS EVERY DAY AND CHANGING CLOTHES? IS THIS RECOMMENDED FOR A SANNYASIN TODAY?

Brahmins have gone neurotic. They suffer from compulsion, obsession, neurosis. To be clean is good, but to clean continuously is mad. And the mind can move to extremes. You can either be dirty, then you don't take a bath.... I used to know an Italian sannyasin. She happened to stay with me in a camp. I was surprised, she never took any bath. Then I inquired and she said, "Once a year," she takes. And she asked, surprised, "Is that not enough? -- once a year?' And then there are brahmins who are not doing anything else -- just taking baths.

I know a person, he is a close relative; he has some obsession. He has remained a bachelor all his life -- a very good man in all the ways except one, and that too is innocent, doesn't harm anybody, but has harmed him completely. He is a poor man because he has never earned much. He has lived on whatsoever had been left by his father, and has to live very, very miserly because he does not have much and it has to last his whole life. And he has no time to earn because of that obsession -- and the obsession is cleanliness. The whole day he is cleaning his house. There is nothing to clean: a small room, he goes on cleaning it. Then he will take his baths. And this is part of the obsession: that if he sees a woman he will immediately take a bath because he is a bachelor, a perfect bachelor, such that "just the shadow of a woman makes you dirty."

He goes to the public tap to bring water. He goes early in the morning so nobody can come across him, because if a woman crosses the path he has to clean his pot again -- throw the water, clean the pot, bring water again. And it has happened sometimes that thirty, forty, sixty times he will go -- the whole day. And you cannot stop traffic, and people are passing, and there are as many women as men. It is difficult. And he cannot miss -- he is looking for women. Even if he can see a woman far away, immediately... The whole day is wasted. He is so superbly clean, but what to do with this cleanliness? Whole life wasted.

It is always good to remember that balance is always right. Don't be dirty; don't get obsessed with dirt. Now hippies have got obsessed with dirtiness. That's reaction. It is not freedom, because reaction can never be freedom. Christianity insisted on too much cleanliness. They have a proverb that cleanliness is next to godliness. They insisted for cleanliness too much; now the whole generation, the modern generation, has revolted against it. Now hippies are not taking baths, they don't bother about any cleaning of the clothes -- as if dirtiness has become their sadhana: it is their discipline to be dirty. They feel they have got completely free from the old pattern of the society. No, you are not free: reaction, revolt. is not revolution. You may go to the other extreme, but you are caught in the same pattern: they were mad to be clean; you are mad to be dirty.

And if I am asked, "If there is only one way... one has to choose the extreme.!" then I will choose the extreme of cleanliness -- at least it is clean. But I am always for balance.

And nobody can make a discipline for you: you have to feel your body, your balance -- because uncleanliness, dirtiness. becomes a heaviness on your body, your mind. Cleanliness is not for somebody else or for the society: it is for you -- to feel light, to feel happy, to feel pure and clean. A good bath gives you wings. A good bath, and you are a little unearthly, not part of this earth: you can fly a little. A good bath is a must. And nobody else can make the rule for you; you have to understand your own body. Sometimes you are ill and there is no need, because the bath can be disturbing; then don't be obsessed with it. Sometimes the situation is not such that you can take the bath; then don't be neurotic about it -- don't feel guilty. There is nothing in it to feel guilty: to take the bath is not a virtue; not to take the bath is not a sin. At the most it is good hygiene.

And you should have to look after your body; the body is the temple of the divine. It should be clean; it should be beautiful. Yon have to live in it; you have to be with it. It will affect you in many ways. In a clean body, in a clean temple, the possibility is more for a clean mind to happen and exist. I am not saying that this is equivalent. I am just saying the possibility -- in a clean body, more possibility. I am not saying that in a dirty body there is no possibility for a clean mind -- the possibility is there, but it will be a little difficult, against the grain.

Meditation is an inner bath of consciousness, and bath is a meditation for the body.

 

 

Next: Chapter 2, Where did we come from and how did we: Seventh Question

 

Energy Enhancement Enlightened Texts Yoga Yoga Sutras of Patanjali

 

 

Chapter 2

 

 

Energy Enhancement Enlightened Texts Yoga Yoga Sutras of Patanjali

 

 

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