Chapter 4: Man is Always an Opening

Question 5



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The fifth question:

Question 5


THIS IS DIFFICULT! Nobody has ever been able to know it -- because, in fact, love is a game. That is its reality! So if you are waiting and watching and thinking and analyzing whether this woman who is in love with you is just playing a game or is in reality in love, you will never be able to love any woman -- because love is a game, the suprememost game.

There is no need to ask for it to be real -- play the game! that's its reality. And if you are too much of a seeker for reality, then love is not for you. It is a dream! It is a fantasy -- it is a fiction, it is a romance, it is a poetry. If you are too much of a seeker for reality, obsessed with reality, then love is not for you -- then meditate.

And I know the questioner is not that type -- the question is from Krishna Gautam. No meditation is possible, at least in this life! He has many karmas to fulfill with women. So he continuously thinks about meditation and continuously goes on moving with this woman or that. Now the women he moves with, they also come to me and they say, "Is he really in love with us?" What to do? And here comes he with a question!

But this problem comes to everybody sometime or other -- because there is no way to judge. We are such strangers -- we are strangers, and our meeting is just accidental. Just on the road suddenly we have come across each other, not knowing who we are, not knowing who the other is. Two strangers meeting on a road, feeling alone, hold each other's hands -- and think they are in love. They are in need of the other, certainly, but how to be certain that there is love?

I was reading a beautiful joke; listen to it carefully:

A woman arrived at a small midwestern town late at night, only to find there wasn't a single hotel room available. "I'm sorry," said the desk clerk, "but the last room we had was just taken by an Italian."

"What number is it?" said the woman in desperation. "Maybe I can work something out with him."

The clerk told her the room and the woman went up and knocked on the door. The Italian let her in.

"Look, mister," she said, "I don't know you and you don't know me, but I need some place to sleep desperately. I won't be any bother, I promise, if you just let me use that little couch over there."

The Italian thought for a minute and then said, "Okay." The woman curled up on the couch and the Italian went back to bed. But the couch was very uncomfortable and after a few minutes the woman tiptoed over to the bed and tapped the Italian's arm. "Look mister," she said, "I don't know you and you don't know me, but that couch is impossible to sleep on. Could I just sleep here, at the edge of the bed?"

"Okay," said the Italian, "use the edge of the bed."

The woman lay down on the bed, but after a few minutes she felt very cold. Again she tapped the Italian.

"Look mister," she said, "I don't know you and you don't know me, but it's very cold out here. Could I just get under the cover with you."

"Okay," said the Italian, "get under the cover."

The woman snuggled under, but the closeness of a male body stirred her and she started to feel a little horny. Again she tapped the Italian.

"Look mister," she said, "I don't know you and you don't know me, but how about having a little party?"

Exasperated, the Italian bolted up in the bed. "Look lady," he hollered, "I don't know you and you don't know me. In the middle of the night, who we gonna invite to a party?"

But this is how it goes: You don't know me, I don't know you -- it is just accidental. Needs are there. People feel lonely; they need somebody to fill their loneliness. They call it love. They show love because that is the only way to hook the other. The other also calls it love because that is the only way to hook you. But who knows whether there is love or not? In fact, love is just a game. Yes, there is a possibility of a real love, but that happens only when you don't need anybody -- that's the difficulty.

It is on the same lines as banks function. If you go to a bank and you need money, they will not give you any. If you don't need money, you have enough, they will come to you and they will always be ready to give you. When you don't need, they are ready to give you; when you need, they are not ready to give you.

When you don't need a person at all, when you are totally sufficient unto yourself, when you can be alone and tremendously happy and ecstatic, then love is possible. But then too you cannot be certain whether the OTHER'S love is real or not -- you can be certain about only one thing: whether your love is real. How can you be certain about the other? But then there is no need.

This continuous anxiety -- whether the other's love is real or not -- simply shows one thing: that your love is not real. Otherwise, who bothers? Why be worried about it? Enjoy it while it lasts! Be together while you can be together! It is a fiction, but you need fiction.

Nietzsche used to say that man is such that he cannot live without lies, he cannot live with truth. Truth will be too much to tolerate, to bear. You need lies. Lies, in a subtle way, lubricate your system; they are lubricants. Mm? You see a woman, you say, "How beautiful! I have never come across such a beautiful person." These are just lubricating lies -- you know it!

You have said the same thing to other women before, and you know you will say the same thing again to other women in the future. And the woman also says that you are the only person that has ever attracted her. These are lies. Behind these lies there is nothing but need. You want the woman to be with you to fill your inner hole; you want to stuff that inner emptiness with her presence. She also wants. You both are trying to use each other as a means.

That's why lovers, so-called lovers, are always in conflict -- because nobody wants to be used, because when you use a person the person becomes a thing, you have reduced him to a commodity. And every woman feels, after making love to a man, a little sad, deceived, cheated, because the man turns over and goes to sleep -- finished is finished!

Many women have told me that they cry and weep after the man, their man, has made love to them -- because after love he is no longer interested. His interest was only for a particular need; then he turns over and goes to sleep. And he is not even bothered about what has happened to the woman. And men also feel cheated. They, by and by, start suspecting that the woman loves them for something else -- for money, power, security. The interest may be economical -- but it is not love.

But it is true. This is how it can be; only this is how it can be! The way you are, living almost asleep, moving in a stupor, somnambulistic, this is the only way it is possible. But don't be worried about it, whether the woman loves you really or not. While you are asleep you will need somebody's love -- even if it is false, you will need it. Enjoy it! Don't create anxiety. And try to become more and more awake.

One day when you are really awake you will be able to love -- but then you will be certain about your love only. But that's enough! Who bothers? Because right now you want to use others. When you are really blissful on your own, you don't want to use anybody. You simply want to share. You have so much, so much is overflowing, you would like somebody to share it. And you will feel thankful that somebody was ready to receive. Finished! That is the full point.

Right now, you are worried too much whether the other loves you really -- because you are not certain about your own love. One thing. You are not certain about your worth. You cannot believe that somebody can really love you. You don't see anything in yourself. You cannot love yourself -- how can somebody else love you? It seems unreal, it seems impossible.

Do you love yourself? You have not even asked the question. People hate themselves. People condemn themselves -- they go on condemning; they go on thinking that they are rotten. How can the other love you? such a rotten person. No, nobody can love you really. The other must be befooling, cheating; there must be some other reason. She must be after something else; he must be after something else.

I have heard:

A dirty, smelly, filthy-looking old Jewish bum, sat down on a park bench next to a sweet young girl. The girl took one look at the bum and looked away in revulsion. Pretty soon she heard a noise and turned her head to see what was happening. She watched in horror as the Jewish bum took a sandwich from a brown bag and took a big bite of it. The meat was rancid, the lettuce was brown, and the bread mouldy.

Sensing the girl's eyes on him, the Jewish bum turned towards her and said, "Pardon me, miss, would you like a bite of my sandwich? I suppose to make love would be out of the question."

This is what goes on happening. You know about yourself -- love seems to be out of the question. You know your rottenness, worthlessness -- love seems to be out of the question. And when some woman comes and says she adores you, you cannot trust. When you go to a woman and you say you adore her, and she hates herself, how can she believe you? It is self-hatred that is creating the anxiety.

There is no way to be certain about the other -- first be certain about yourself. And a person who is certain about himself is certain about the whole world. A certainty achieved at your innermost core becomes a certainty about everything that you do and everything that happens to you. Settled, centered, grounded, in yourself, you never worry about such things. You accept.

If somebody loves you, you accept it because you love yourself. You are happy with yourself; somebody else is happy -- good! It does not get in your head; it does not make you madly egoistic. You simply enjoy yourself; somebody else also finds you enjoyable -- good! While it lasts, live the fiction as beautifully as possible -- it will not last forever. That too creates a problem.

When a love is finished, you start thinking it was false -- that's why it has come to an end. No, not necessarily -- not necessarily. It may have had some glimmer of truth in it, but you were both unable to keep and hold that truth. You killed it It was there -- you murdered it. You were not capable of love. You needed love, but you were not capable of it. So you meet a woman or a man; things go very well, very smoothly, fantastically beautifully -- in the beginning. The moment you have settled, things start getting sour, bitter. The more you have settled, the more conflict arises. That kills love.

As I see it, every love has in the beginning a ray of light in it, but the lovers destroy that. They jump on that ray of light with all their darknesses within -- dark continents, great Africas within. They jump on it and they destroy it. When it is destroyed they think it was false. They have killed it! It was not false -- they are false. The ray was real, true.

So don't be worried about the other; don't be worried whether the love is real or not. While it is there, enjoy it. Even if it is a dream, good to dream about it. And become more and more alert and aware so sleep is dropped.

When you are aware, a totally different kind of love will arise in your heart -- which is absolutely true, which is part of eternity. But that is not a need -- it is a luxury. And you have so much of it that you hanker for somebody to share it with.

Just like clouds when they are so full of rainwater: they would like to shower anywhere, upon anybody. And they don't bother whether it is a hilly track they are showering on, whether it is rocky ground they are showering on, or whether it is fertile soil thirsty for them -- they don't bother. They go on raining on rocks, on fertile soil, on everybody -- good and bad, thirsty, non-thirsty; needed, not needed. Because it is not a question now of whether you need; it is a question now that they are so full they have to share.

I love you -- not because I need. I love you simply because what else can I do now? It is there and I would like to shower it on you, and I go on showering -- unconditionally. It is not that you deserve it -- never think that. You know and I know that you don't deserve it, but that is not the point. What else can I do?

I have heard a very old Tibetan story:

There was a great sage who would not initiate anybody, who would not make anybody a disciple. And his fame spread far and wide, and thousands of people would come every year to his hilltop and they would touch his feet and they would cry and weep and they would say, "Accept us! Initiate us into the truth you have achieved! Open the door of your temple to us also -- we are thirsty."

But he would say, "You are not worthy, you don't deserve. First become worthy of me!" And his conditions were such that nobody was ever able to fulfill them: Be truthful for three years, not a single lie; for three years be celibate, not even a thought of a woman or a man -- and so on and so forth. Those conditions were impossible! And those conditions are such that the more you try to fulfill them, the more you will feel it is impossible. You can be a celibate if you don't bother too much about it; but if you think too much about celibacy then you will be surrounded by many, many women in your mind.

Many people had tried and nobody was successful, so nobody was initiated. Then the man was dying. Just three days before he died, many people had gathered and he told his closest people, "Now you go, and whosoever wants to be initiated I will initiate -- only three days are left!"

The people knew him well and they said, "What about your conditions?"

He said, "Forget all about those conditions! In fact, I was not ready to initiate anybody; hence, I was insisting too much on the conditions. Now I am ready! and I am full and I want to share. Now forget all about the conditions -- whosoever wants to come, fetch them! And be in a hurry because only three days are left."

He initiated any and everybody, whosoever came. People could not believe it! They asked, "What are you doing? We are sinners!"

He said, "Forget about it. I was not a saint up to now -- that was the only trouble. I had nothing to initiate you into. There was no door -- I was standing outside the door myself. But now the door has opened -- now I have to share. Now there is no question of any conditions."

When you are aware, you are not in need of love. When you are not in need of love, you become capable of love. This is the paradox. When you are in need you are not capable.

And in this sleepy state, full of needs and desires, you go on stumbling. Why bother? let me tell you one anecdote:

Two very proper English gentlemen were drunk in the pubs looking for women. They finally got lucky and were about to bed with their respective finds. As they were lurching their way through the crowded London streets, one turned to the other and said, "Look here, old man, do you mind switching bitches?"

"No, I don't mind old thing, but can you tell a fellow why?"

"Well," slobbered the first, "don't you know, between the grog and the fog and the smog, I seem to have picked up my old auntie!"

In the darkness of desire, in the madness of passion, between the grog and the fog and the smog, don't be too worried whether the other's love is real or not. Right now, as you are, the real cannot happen to you. The real happens only to real persons. Gurdjieff used to say: "Don't seek reality -- become real!" because the real happens to real persons only. To unreal persons only the unreal happens.


Next: Chapter 4: Man is Always an Opening, Question 6


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