To walk with one's own light

First Question



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Question 1


It is not only impossible to talk seriously about it -- it is impossible to talk about it at all. Seriously is not the question. Just to talk about it is impossible because then talk implies language.

Language has a pattern, language itself is an ideology. To use language is to fall into the trap of it. Language has a logic, a system, a substratum. Once you talk about something, you have entered into the world of ideology.

But to talk is a necessary evil. It has to be tolerated. I would like not to talk; I would like to convey and commune directly without language, but then it will not reach you. The silence will not be understood.

So I have to use language, knowing well that this is a necessary evil, knowing well that you have to transcend it, knowing well that that which is worth saying cannot be said in it, knowing well that the moment you utter a truth the very uttering falsifies it. But before you become capable of understanding silence, that communion from heart to heart has to happen.

So I talk to help you towards silence. By my talking you will not understand silence, but by my talk you may have a taste, a fragrance. By my talk you may be able to listen to the silence that is bound to be there between two words, the silence that is bound to be there between two sentences.

Whatsoever I say is not important; the gap between is important. Don't pay too much attention to what I say. The words are like two banks of the river; the banks are not the river -- don't get too attached to the banks. They won't quench your thirst. Forget the banks; just look in between. The gap, the silence between two words is the river. That's what I am trying to convey to you.

I know you listen to the words, you don't listen to the silence. The gestalt has to be changed. But one day it happens. If you go on listening, one day it happens. Suddenly, one day, unaware, you are caught. Suddenly, for the first time, words are no more important, but the being that I am touches you. The ears go on listening to the words but the heart is moving in some unknown direction.

It cannot be planned to happen, but it happens. That's why in the East SATSANG has been praised so much. SATSANG means to be with a Master. When he speaks, to be with him. When he sits, to be with him. When he looks at you, to be with him. When he does not look at you, then also, to be with him -- just to have a feeling flow between the one who knows and the one who is seeking. One day something tunes in -- and that day is unpredictable; nothing can be done about it. The more you do anything about it the more you will be missing it.

So just go on listening to my words, but by and by shift your emphasis to the silent gaps. Sometimes I am not saying anything. Sometimes I just look at you. There exactly, precisely there, is the message. And if you listen to that message, it is not ideology. It is not even anti-ideology! Because if something is anti-ideological, it is again an ideology. To be anti is to be in the world of the idea.

I am not against ideology. How can I commit that sin? I am beyond, not against. Ideology, anti-ideology -- both are left in the valley. I have moved to a different world, a peak which is beyond. And I am not teaching you anti-ideology. I am not teaching you anything that belongs to the world of concepts and ideas. I am teaching you 'me'! I am teaching you a way of being, a different quality of existence.

Listen to my words. But don't only listen to my words -- shift. One day you will understand even THAT which cannot be said through words.

Even through words there may be glimpses. Once you can feel my silence, my words will take another significance. Then they will not be just words, just sounds -- no. Then they become a flowering. It is a very difficult job: to talk about silence.

In Zen they say it is like selling water by the river. The river is flowing, but you are blind and I have to sell water. And, of course, you pay for it -- and the river is absolutely free. It is like watering the garden when the rain is falling. Or, as in old Indian scriptures it is said: 'It is putting legs on a snake to help him walk!' Foolish, stupid -- because the snake walks perfectly well without any legs. In fact, legs will hinder. But what to do? The snake goes on saying: 'Help me.' Or as it is said in old Taoist scriptures: 'To talk about truth is as if to put a hat on a man who is already wearing one.' To put another hat on top of the hat -- useless.

So what am I doing here? I am just giving you patience, the capacity to wait, watch. It is an effort to be with me; in the beginning it is like an effort, but one day suddenly it happens and it is no more an effort. Effortlessly you are here. Then you understand me -- whether I say something or not. Then you will understand me -- whether I am here in this chair or not, whether I am in this body or not. But before that happens, that supreme flowering of your silence, I have to go on beating the bush, around and around.

And the second thing about the first question: I am not a serious man. I look like one but the appearance is deceptive. I'm not a serious man; I'm absolutely non-serious -- and that is the only way the enlightened consciousness can be.

Seriousness is mundane, it is of the marketplace. You find it in the churches -- in fact, too much -- because your churches are nothing but part of the marketplace, part of the world of commodities.

I have heard one Jewish joke: a Jew came to the synagogue with a dead cat, and he asked the rabbi if he could bury it in the Jewish burial ground. The rabbi was aghast, horrified. He said: 'What! You, a good Jew, and asking your rabbi to bury a dirty, dead cat in the holy grounds? No I Never I Certainly not I Absolutely not!' The man stood up and said: 'Then I will not be able to give you the ten thousand pounds the cat has left in the will.'

Suddenly the rabbi jumped, and he said: 'Wait Don't try to go out. You fool! Why didn't you tell me before that the cat was a Jew?'

Your synagogues, your churches, your temples -- they belong to the marketplace; they have to be serious.

The world is too serious, and it has to be because death always hangs over. You may avoid, you may not look at it, but in the world, death is always around. You have to be serious. Even if you laugh, your laughter has tears within it. Even if you smile, your smile is not total; it is painted, forced. It is not an inner flow and glow. No, it is not.

In the marketplace you have learned too much seriousness. Then your churches become serious. Your gods cannot smile.

Christians say Jesus never laughed -- looks absolutely foolish, the whole idea. Jesus never laughed? Then who will laugh? If even Jesus cannot laugh, then laughter becomes a sheer impossibility. In fact, ONLY he must have laughed; only he can laugh, and enjoy it. In India we don't take the world seriously. We call it God's LEELA, God's play; a joke at the most, a story, a drama -- told beautifully, but nothing serious about it.

I am not serious, and whatsoever I am saying I am saying in a very non-serious mood. Of course, I am sincere, but not serious. Whatsoever I am saying, I really want to convey it to you, but if it is not conveyed I don't feel frustrated. If it is conveyed I don't feel proud. If I fail utterly or if I succeed absolutely -- both are the same. That's why I say I'm not serious.

You may be here seriously, but by and by I will persuade you not to be serious, because seriousness is the shadow of the ego. Without the ego you can't be serious. Simply without the ego, seriousness disappears, because without the ego, death disappears. Only the ego has died -- not you. You have never died; you have never been born. You have been eternally here, and you will be eternally here. You are part of this whole existence. You cannot be separated from it.

Sometimes you may have been in the trees, you may have been a tree. Sometimes in the birds, and you may have been a bird. And sometimes a rock, and sometimes a stream falling from the Himalayas. Millions of ways. Millions of forms. Millions of names. Yes, you have existed in many many ways. It was never that you were not; it will be never that you will not be. The form changes; the formless goes on and on and on.

There is nothing to be serious about. But the ego is afraid, apprehensive. Death is coming. The ego is a weight. The ego cannot laugh.

My whole effort is to create such a deep laughter in you that the laughter remains but you disappear. The dance remains but the dancer disappears. Then life is tremendously beautiful -- and only then life is beautiful.

So don't think about me like other religious people who are very serious. If they are serious they cannot be religious: that is my criterion. If your saints cannot laugh, they may be suppressed sinners at the most. Because a suppressed person cannot laugh, he is always afraid. With laughter many other things may escape. He has to suppress everything: the anger, the sex, the greed, the hatred, the love. Now he cannot allow only laughter to escape. And this is a deep secret: either you are totally expressive or you are not. You cannot be partially expressive.

Your so-called saints have to suppress themselves totally. And to me, a saint is one who has no suppression in his being. When he laughs, he laughs. His whole being is involved -- ripples of laughter.

Remember this -- and this will be very very meaningful to remember in reference to Hassidism. Hassidism has created the greatest tradition of laughing saints; that is one of the most beautiful contributions of Hassidism.

A Hassidic sage is not one who has renounced the world. He lives in the world, because to renounce it looks too serious. He does not go away from the marketplace -- he goes above. He lives where you live, but he lives in a different way. He exists by your side, but simultaneously exists somewhere else. He has joined the SANSAR, the world -- and sannyas, the renunciation.

When I give sannyas to you, I am doing a Hassidic work. I don't tell you to move to the Himalayas because that would be a choice, and a choice is always serious -- because you would have to leave something, you would have to cut a part of your being, you would have to cripple yourself.

When you choose you move in a certain direction -- then the whole is not accepted. If you live in the world, then you reject renunciation, sannyas, then you reject meditation. You say: 'They are not for us. We are worldly people.' Then one day you get fed up with the world, you leave the world. Now you are afraid to come into the world. Now you say: 'We are unworldly people. We live outside the world!' But in both the cases, you remain half-hearted, you are never total.

A Hassidic sage is total. He lives in the world, he lives as ordinarily as everybody else. He has no madness, no megalomania about his extraordinariness. A Hassidic rabbi is absolutely ordinary -- and that is his extraordinariness. He has no need to show it. He is!

There are other saints who have a need to show that they are special. That very need shows that deep down they are very ordinary, because this is part of the ordinary mind: to be always in need, always expecting, always wanting people to feel and think that you are not ordinary. This is a very ordinary need. Only somebody who is really extraordinary can be ordinary -- because he has no need to convince others: 'I am special.'

Once I was travelling in a train. In my compartment three persons were also there. They talked about a thousand and one things. The journey was long and they needed to be occupied. Then their talk drifted towards the subject of happiness.

One of them was a very rich man and he said: 'I am happy because I have attained all the riches that I need. I have succeeded, I have arrived.' I looked at the man's face -- no sign of any arrival, a sort of nervousness. In fact, the way he was saying it -- with such confidence -- was nothing but to hide a deep nervousness. I could see he was trembling inside like a leaf in a strong wind. He was pretending. He said: 'I have attained to happiness.' But his eyes were desert-like, no happiness, no greenery. He was almost a dead person, shrunken, wasted.

The other man belonged to a political party and he said: 'I am also happy because the party needs me. Without me, they cannot win the coming election. I am needed. That's my happiness.'

One thinks that because he has accumulated much riches, he is happy. What have riches to do with happiness? Riches are outside; happiness is an inner flowering. A poor man can be happy; it has no intrinsic relationship with poverty or riches. A beggar like Buddha can be happy. And a man who says he is happy because he has attained to many riches is just befooling himself, pretending.

The other man said: 'I am happy because I am needed.' A certain significance comes to you when you are needed. You think you are essential to somebody, to some political organization, to some religious sect. But a man who is happy is not dependent on others. If the political party can find a better man than this, or a worse man than this -- which is the same in politics -- then he will feel frustrated. Happiness never feels frustrated. If it does, it is not happiness -- it is a covering of the reality by a false notion.

Then there was one woman. She said that she was also happy. She had five children, beautiful persons, all growing. Her hopes were fulfilled in them. And her husband loved her deeply; he had always remained faithful to her. The woman must have been beautiful when she was younger. Now near about fifty, just a skeleton, a memory -- a memory of the past. Eyes shrunken. The whole life gone. Death approaching. She was clinging to the children; they would fulfill her hopes. She could not fulfill herself so now they would fulfill; now she would live though their ambitions.

Happiness never lives though anybody else. It needs nobody; it is enough unto itself. And she insisted that her husband had been faithful to her, but I could see that whatsoever she was saying she didn't believe it -- her eyes were showing something else. In fact, whenever you say that your husband is faithful, you are suspicious. Or you say that your wife is faithful -- the doubt has entered. Because faith does not know about doubt and does not know about faith. If faith is true faith, then you don't know it. Otherwise, the worm of doubt is deep down somewhere, eating it.

Then they all turned towards me. They said: 'What about you?'

I told them: 'I have never tried to be happy and I don't belong to any organization, religious or otherwise. Nobody needs me, and if somebody needs me, that may be HIS problem -- it is not mine. I don't need to be needed; that's not my need. And as far as success goes, I am a failure -- my hands are absolutely empty. And the very language is alien to me -- in terms of faith -- because to talk about faith is to hide doubt. In fact, I have never been deeply interested in happiness, because I am already happy. I just am happy. There is no cause to it!'

If there is a cause of happiness, you are ready to be unhappy any moment. You are just on the verge because a cause can disappear. Then the happiness will disappear. Unless you are just happy for no visible or invisible cause, unless you are just happy -- unreasonably, irrationally, illogically, madly -- you are not happy.

And a happy person cannot be serious. An unhappy person is serious because he is missing something. He is seeking and searching, always tense, moving, going somewhere -- waiting for Godot. That is the nature of an unhappy person.

I have arrived so deeply that I don't even feel the arrival. In fact I had never departed. I'm not serious. Appearances may be deceptive. You may not find me laughing, but that is only because when you are very serious then you need laughter also. When you are simply happy, seriousness disappears, laughter disappears.

Your laughter is medicinal. You are too serious. You need to laugh.

It may be that Jesus never laughed, but the way Christians interpret it is wrong. I can conceive that he never laughed. It is possible because he was a laughter. He was laughing so deeply and so continuously. It was not an event, it was a process. It was not something that happens and then dissolves. It was ongoing.

If you are REALLY happy, there is no need to laugh and there is no need to weep. Both will disappear.

I am not serious, I am just celebrating. And when I talk to you, I am not giving you an idealogy, a philosophy, a religion -- no. I simply want to share my celebration. Shift from the words to silence. Don't listen to my words; listen to me. There, precisely there, is the message.


Next: Chapter 2, To walk with one's own light, The second question


Energy Enhancement          Enlightened Texts          Hassidism          The True Sage



Chapter 2






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