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Chapter-4

THE YOGA SUTRAS OF PATANJALI

Selfishness: The only Unselfishness

Sixth Question

Question 6

WHY DO YOU ALWAYS CARRY A NAPKIN WITH YOU, EVEN WHEN THERE IS NO USE FOR IT?

It is symbolic: that I am useless like my napkin. I don't believe in utility. Utility belongs to the world, to the marketplace. I believe in nonutilitarian things: a flower. What is the utility of a flower? What is the use? It is absolutely useless; and hence beautiful, absolutely beautiful.

Life to me is not purposive; there is no purpose in it. If there was purpose life could not be so beautiful. Purpose always creates ugliness. Purpose gives you commodities, not ecstasies. Purpose gives you factories, not temples. Life is not a factory; it is a temple. What is the use of a temple?

In the East, every village has a temple, at least one. More, then it is too good; otherwise one. Even a very, very poor village. When Westerners came for the first time to the East they could not believe the phenomenon, because the villages are so poor. They don't have proper houses, just huts, you can call them houses in name only; but they have a beautiful temple in their town. Their homes don't have stone walls, just bamboo, but their god has beautiful marble walls, marble floors. A small temple, but beautiful. They couldn't believe -- when you live in such poverty, what is the use of making such a beautiful temple?

In the East we have always believed in uselessness. One can live in a house; it is a utility. God is not living there; he can live without the temple. Even if the temple is not existing, nothing will be lacking in the world. The world is not enriched by the temple. It is enriched by a factory, by a hospital, by a school -- not by a temple. A temple is simply useless. So when communists took over in Russia, they destroyed all the temples, all the churches -- they converted them into factories, schools, hospitals, this and that -- because a communist believes in utility. He does not believe in flowers. He does not believe in stars. He does not believe in poetries. He believes in prose, logical syllogisms.

I believe in poetry. I don't bother a bit about logic; I'm absolutely illogical. And I have known life's beauty through illogic, through irrationality. Through the heart, I have seen the temple of life; and I tell you, if you go on searching for God in your factories you will never find him. If you go on searching for your God in the hospitals and schools you will miss him for ever and ever, because God is not a purpose. In India we don't even call this world his creation -- we call it his leela, play. Play is purposeless; it is not even a game. He simply goes on playing hide-and-seek with himself, with no purpose to attain. It is sheer delight to be. The value is intrinsic. The value is not in the end; the value is in you.

You are right: why do I always carry a napkin with me, absolutely purposeless? Even I don't know why, but I carry it. It is a symbol... illogical.

 

 

Next: Chapter 4, Selfishness: The only Unselfishness: Seventh Question

 

Energy Enhancement Enlightened Texts Yoga Yoga Sutras of Patanjali

 

 

Chapter 4

 

 

Energy Enhancement Enlightened Texts Yoga Yoga Sutras of Patanjali

 

 

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