The Japanese master Nan-in gave audience to a professor of philosophy. Serving tea, Nan-in filled his visitor’s cup, and kept pouring. The professor watched the overflow until he could restrain himself no longer: “Stop! The cup is over full, no more will go in.” Nan-in said: “Like this cup, you are full of your own opinions and speculations. How can I show you Zen unless you first empty your cup.”
You have come to an even more dangerous person than Nan-in, because an empty cup won’t do; the cup has to be broken completely. Even empty, if you are there, then you are full. Even emptiness fills you. If you feel that you are empty you are not empty at all, you are there. Only the name has changed: now you call yourself emptiness. The cup won’t do at all; it has to be broken completely. Only when you are not can the tea be poured into you, only when you are not is there no need really to pour the tea into you. When you are not the whole existence begins pouring, the whole existence becomes a shower from every dimension, from every direction. When you are not, the divine is.
The story is beautiful. It was bound to happen to a professor of philosophy. The story says a professor of philosophy came to Nan-in. He must have come for the wrong reasons because a professor of philosophy, as such, is always wrong. Philosophy means intellect, reasoning, thinking, argumentativeness. And this is the way to be wrong, because you cannot be in love with existence if you are argumentative. Argument is the barrier. If you argue, you are closed; the whole existence closes to you. Then you are not open and existence is not open to you.
When you argue, you assert. Assertion is violence, aggression, and the truth cannot be known by an aggressive mind, the truth cannot be discovered by violence. You can come to know the truth only when you are in love. But love never argues. There is no argument in love, because there is no aggression. And remember, not only was that man a professor of philosophy, you are also the same. Every man carries his own philosophy, and every man in his own way is a professor, because you profess your ideas, you believe in them. You have opinions, concepts, and because of opinions and concepts your eyes are dull, they cannot see; your mind is stupid, it cannot know.
Ideas create stupidity, because the more the ideas are there the more the mind is burdened. And how can a burdened mind know? The more ideas there are the more it is just like dust which has gathered on a mirror. How can the mirror, mirror? How can the mirror reflect? Your intelligence is just covered by opinions ? the dust ? and everyone who is opinionated is bound to be stupid and dull. That’s why professors of philosophy are almost always stupid. They know too much to know at all. They are burdened too much. They cannot fly in the sky, they can’t have wings. And they are so much in the mind, they can’t have roots in the earth. They are not grounded in the earth and they are not free to fly into the sky.
And remember, you are all the same. There may be differences of quantity, but every mind is qualitatively the same, because mind thinks, argues, collects and gathers knowledge and becomes dull. Only children are intelligent. And if you can retain your childhood, if you continuously reclaim your childhood, you will remain innocent and intelligent. If you gather dust, childhood is lost, innocence is no more; the mind has become dull and stupid. Now you can have philosophies.
The more philosophies you have, the more you are far away from the divine.
A religious mind is a non-philosophical mind. A religious mind is an innocent, intelligent mind. The mirror is clear, the dust has not been gathered; and every day a continuous cleaning goes on. That’s what I call meditation.
This professor of philosophy came to Nan-in. He must have come for wrong reasons: he must have come to receive some answers. Those people who are filled with questions are always in search of answers. And Nan-in cannot give an answer. It is foolish to be concerned with questions and answers. Nan-in can give you a new mind, Nan-in can give you a new being, Nan-in can give you a new existence in which no questions arise. But Nan-in is not interested in answering any particular questions. He is not interested in giving answers. Neither am I.
You must have come here with many questions. It is bound to be so, because the mind gives birth to questions. Mind is a question-creating mechanism. Feed anything into it, out comes a question, and many questions follow. Give an answer to it; immediately it converts it into many questions. You are here, filled with many questions, your cup is already full. No need for Nan-in to pour any tea into it, you are already overflowing.
I can give you a new existence ? that’s why I have invited you here ? I will not give you any answers. All questions, all answers are useless, just a wastage of energy. But I can transform you, and that is the only answer. And that one answer solves all questions.
Philosophy has many questions, many answers ? millions. Religion has only one answer; whatsoever the question the answer remains the same. Buddha used to say: You taste sea water from anywhere, the taste remains the same, the saltiness of it.
Whatsoever you ask is really irrelevant. I will answer the same because I have got only one answer. But that one answer is like a master key; it opens all doors. It is not concerned with any particular lock ? any lock and the key opens it. Religion has only one answer and that answer is meditation. Meditation means how to empty yourself.
The professor must have been tired, walking long, when he reached Nan-in’s cottage. And Nan-in said: “Wait a little.” He must have been in a hurry. Mind is always in a hurry, and mind is always in search of instantaneous realizations. For the mind, to wait is very difficult, almost impossible. Nan-in said: “I will prepare tea for you. You look tired. Wait a little, rest a little, and have a cup of tea. And then we can discuss.”
Nan-in boiled the water and started preparing the tea. But he must have been watching the professor. Not only was the water boiling, the professor was also boiling within. Not only was the tea kettle making sounds, the professor was making more sounds within, chattering, continuously talking. The professor must have been getting ready ? what to ask, how to ask, from where to begin. He must have been in a deep monologue. Nan-in must have been smiling and watching: This man is too full, so much so that nothing can penetrate into him. The answer cannot be given because there is no one to receive it. The guest cannot enter into the house ? there is no room. Nan-in must have wanted to become a guest in this professor.
Out of compassion, a Buddha always wants to become a guest within you.
He knocks from everywhere but there is no door. And even if he breaks a door, which is very difficult, there is no room. You are so full with yourself and with rubbish and all types of furniture which you have gathered in many, many lives, you cannot even enter into yourself; there is no room, no space. You live just outside of your own being, just on the steps. You cannot enter within yourself, everything is blocked.
Then Nan-in poured tea into the cup. The professor became uneasy, because Nan-in was continuously pouring tea. It was overflowing; soon it would be going onto the floor. Then the professor said: “Stop! What are you doing? Now this cup cannot hold any more tea, not even a single drop. Are you mad? What are you doing?”
Nan-in said: “The same is the case with you. You are so alert to observe and become aware that the cup is full and cannot hold any more, why are you not so aware about your own self? You are overflowing with opinions, philosophies, doctrines, scriptures. You know too much already; I cannot give you anything. You have traveled in vain. Before coming to me you should have emptied your cup, then I could pour something into it.”
But I tell you, you have come to a more dangerous person. No, an empty cup I won’t allow, because if the cup is there you will fill it. You are so addicted and you have become so habituated that you cannot allow the cup to be empty even for a single moment. The moment you see emptiness anywhere you start filling it. You are so scared of emptiness, you are so afraid: emptiness appears like death. You will fill it with anything, but you will fill it. No, I have invited you to be here to break down this cup completely, so that even if you want to you cannot fill it.
Emptiness means there is no cup left. All the walls have disappeared, the bottom has fallen down; you have become an abyss. Then I can pour myself into you. Much is possible, if you allow. But to allow is arduous, because to allow you will have to surrender. Emptiness means surrender.
Nan-in was saying to that professor: Bow down, surrender, empty your head. I am ready to pour. That professor had not even asked the question and Nan-in had given the answer, because really there is no need to ask the question. The question remains the same.
Whether you ask me or not, I know what the question is. So many of you are here but I know the question, because deep down the question is one: the anxiety, the anguish, the meaninglessness, the futility of this whole life ? not knowing who you are. But you are filled. Allow me to break this cup. This camp is going to be a destruction, a death. If you are ready to be destroyed something new will come out of it. Every destruction can become a creative birth. If you are ready to die you can have a new life, you can be reborn.
I am here just to be a midwife. That’s what Socrates used to say ? that a master is just a midwife. I can help, I can protect, I can guide, that’s all. The actual phenomenon, the transformation, is going to happen to you. Suffering will be there, because no birth is possible without suffering. Much anguish will come up, because you have accumulated it and it has to be thrown. A deep cleansing and catharsis will be needed.
Birth is just like death, but the suffering is worth taking.
Out of the darkness of suffering a new morning arises, a new sun arises. And the dawn is not very far off when you feel darkness too much. When suffering is unbearable, bliss is very near. So don’t try to escape from suffering ? that is the point where you can miss. Don’t try to avoid it, pass through it. Don’t try to find some way which goes round about ? no, that won’t do. Pass through it. Suffering will burn you, destroy you, but really you cannot be destroyed. All that can be destroyed is just the rubbish that you have gathered. All that can be destroyed is something that is not you. When it is all destroyed, then you will feel that you are indestructible, you are deathless. Passing through death, consciously passing through death, one becomes aware of life eternal.
These few days you will be here with me many things are possible, but the first step to remember is to pass through suffering. Many times I create suffering for you; many times I create the situation in which all that is suppressed within you comes up. Don’t push it down, don’t repress it. Allow it, free it. If you can free your suffering, your suppressed suffering, you will become free of it. And you can come to the state of bliss only when all suffering has been passed through, thrown, completely dropped.
And I can see through you: the flame of bliss is just near the corner. Once a glimpse and that flame becomes yours. I will push you in many ways to have a glimpse of it. If you miss you will be responsible, no one else. The river is flowing, but if you cannot bow down, if you cannot come down from your egoistic state of mind, you may go back thirsty. Don’t blame the river. The river was there but you were paralyzed by your ego.
That’s what Nan-in says: Empty the cup. That means empty the mind. Ego is there, overflowing, and when ego is overflowing nothing can be done. The whole existence is around you but nothing can be done. All around the divine…surrounded…but nothing can be done. From nowhere can the divine penetrate you, you have created such a citadel. Empty the cup. Rather, throw the cup completely. When I say throw the cup completely I mean be so empty that you don’t have even the feeling that “I am empty.”
Once it happened, a disciple came to Bodhidharma and said: “Master, you told me to be empty. Now I have become empty. Now what else do you say?”
Bodhidharma hit him hard with his staff on the head, and he said: “Go and throw this emptiness out.”
If you say: “I am empty,” the “I am” is there, and the “I” cannot be empty. So emptiness cannot be claimed. No one can say: “I am empty,” just as no one can say: “I am humble.” If you say: “I am humble,” you are not. Who claims this humility? Humbleness cannot be claimed. If you are humble, you are humble, but you cannot say it. Not only can you not say it, you cannot feel that you are humble because the very feeling will give birth to the ego again. Be empty, but don’t think that you are empty, otherwise you have deceived yourself.
You have brought many philosophies with you.
Drop them. They have not helped you at all, they have not done anything for you. It is time enough, the right time. Drop them wholesale, not in parts, not in fragments. For these few days you will be here with me just be without any thinking. I know it is difficult but still I say it is possible. And once you know the knack of it, you will laugh at the whole absurdity of the mind that you were carrying so long.
I have heard about a man who was traveling in a train for the first time, a villager. He was carrying his luggage on his head, thinking: “Putting it down will be too much for the train to carry, and I have paid only for my own self. I have purchased the ticket but I have not paid for the luggage.” So he was carrying the luggage on his head. The train was carrying him and his luggage, and whether he carried it on his head or put it down made no difference to the train.
Your mind is unnecessary luggage. It makes no difference to this existence that is carrying you; you are unnecessarily burdened. I say: Drop it. The trees exist without the mind and exist more beautifully than any human being; the birds exist without the mind and exist in a more ecstatic state than any human being. Look at children who are still not civilized, who are still wild. They exist without the mind, and even a Jesus or a Buddha will feel jealous of their innocence. There is no need for this mind. The whole world is going on and on without it. Why are you carrying it? Are you just thinking that it will be too much for God, too much for existence? Once you can put it down, even for a single minute, your whole existence will be transformed. You will enter into a new dimension, the dimension of weightlessness.
That’s what I’m going to give you: wings into the sky, into the heaven ? weightlessness gives you these wings ? and roots into the earth, a groundedness, a centering. This earth and that heaven: they are two parts of the whole. In this life, your so-called ordinary life, you must be rooted; and in your inner space, in the spiritual life, you must be weightless and flying and flowing, floating.
Roots and wings I can give to you, if you allow ? because I am only a midwife. I cannot force the child out of you. A forced child will be ugly, and a forced child may die. Just allow me. The child is there, you are already pregnant. Everybody is pregnant with God. The child is there and you have already carried too long; long ago the period of nine months passed. That may be the root cause of your anguish ? that you are carrying something in the womb which needs birth, which needs to come out, which needs to be born. Think of a woman, a mother, carrying a child after the ninth month. Then it becomes more and more burdensome, and if the birth is not going to happen the mother will die, because it will be too much to bear. That may be the reason why you are in so much anxiety, anguish, tension. Something needs to be born out of you; something needs to be created out of your womb. I can help.
This Samadhi Sadhana Shibir, this camp for inner ecstasy and enlightenment, is just going to be a help for you so that which you have carried like a seed up to now can come out of your soil and become an alive thing, an alive plant. But the basic thing will be that if you want to be with me you cannot be with your mind. Both cannot happen simultaneously.
Whenever you are with your mind you are not with me;
Whenever you are with your mind you are not with me;
whenever the mind is not there you are with me.
And I can work only if you are with me. Empty the cup. Throw the cup away completely; destroy it.
This camp is going to be in many ways different. This night I start a completely new phase of my work. You are fortunate enough to be here because you will be witnesses to a new type of inner work. I must explain it to you because tomorrow morning the journey starts.
Three times you will be doing meditation. In the morning the dynamic, in the afternoon the kirtan, and in the night a new meditation has to be introduced: Sufi dervish dancing. All these three meditations are fragments of one whole.
The first meditation, which you will be doing in the morning, is related to the rising sun. It is a morning meditation. When the sleep is broken the whole of nature becomes alive. The night has gone, the darkness is no more, the sun is coming up, and everything becomes conscious and alert. So this first meditation is a meditation in which you have to be continuously alert, conscious, aware, whatsoever you do. The first step, breathing; the second step, catharsis; the third step, the mantra, the mahamantra, Hoo.
Remain a witness. Don’t get lost. It is easy to get lost. While you are breathing you can forget; you can become one with the breathing so much that you can forget the witness. But then you miss the point. Breathe as fast, as deep as possible, bring your total energy to it, but still remain a witness. Observe what is happening as if you are just a spectator, as if the whole thing is happening to somebody else, as if the whole thing is happening in the body and the consciousness is just centered and looking. This witnessing has to be carried in all the three steps. And when everything stops, and in the fourth step you have become completely inactive, frozen, then this alertness will come to its peak.
In the afternoon meditation ? kirtan, dancing, singing ? another inner work has to be done. In the morning you have to be fully conscious; in the afternoon meditation you have to be half conscious, half unconscious. It is a noontide meditation ? when you are alert but you feel sleepy. It is just like a man who is under the influence of some intoxicant. He walks, but cannot walk rightly; he knows where he is going, but everything is dim. He is conscious and not conscious. He knows he has taken alcohol, he knows his feet are wavering, but he knows this half-asleep, half-awake. So in the afternoon meditation remember this ? act as if you are intoxicated, drunk, ecstatic. Sometimes you will forget yourself completely like a drunkard, sometimes you will remember, but don’t try to be conscious just like the morning. No. Move with the day ? half-half in the noon. Then you are in tune with nature.
In the night, just the opposite of the morning ? be completely unconscious; don’t bother at all. The night has come, the sun has set, now everything is moving into unconsciousness. Move into unconsciousness. This whirling, Sufi whirling, is one of the most ancient techniques, one of the most forceful. It is so deep that even a single experience can make you totally different. You have to whirl with open eyes, just like small children go on twirling, as if your inner being has become a center and your whole body has become like a wheel, moving ? a potter’s wheel, moving. You are in the center, but the whole body is moving.
Start slowly, clockwise. If somebody feels it is very difficult to move clockwise then move anti-clockwise, but the rule is to move clockwise. If a few people are left-handed then they may feel it difficult; they can move anti-clockwise. And almost ten percent of people are left-handed, so if you find that clockwise you feel uneasy, move anti-clockwise; but start with clockwise, then feel. With open eyes, start moving.
Music will be there, slow, just to help you. In the beginning move very slowly; don’t go fast, very slowly, enjoying. And then, by and by, go faster. The first fifteen minutes go slowly; the second fifteen minutes fast; the third fifteen minutes faster; the fourth fifteen minutes, just completely mad. Then bring your total energy…you become a whirlpool, an energy whirlpool, lost completely in it: no witnessing, no effort to observe. Don’t try to see; be the whirlpool, be the whirling. One hour.
In the beginning you may not be able to stand so long, but remember one thing: don’t stop by yourself, don’t stop the whirling. If you feel it is impossible, the body will fall down automatically, but don’t you stop. If you fall down in the middle of the hour there is no problem; the process is complete. But don’t play tricks with yourself, don’t deceive; don’t think that now you are tired so it is better to stop. No, don’t make it a decision on your part. If you are tired, how can you go on? You will fall automatically. So don’t stop yourself; let the whirling itself come to a point where you fall down. When you fall down, fall down on your stomach; and it will be good if your stomach is in direct touch with the earth. Now close the eyes. Lie down on the earth as if lying down on the breast of your mother, a small child lying down on the breast of the mother. Become completely unconscious ? and this whirling will help.
Whirling gives intoxication to the body.
It is a chemical thing, it gives you intoxication, to be exact. That’s why sometimes you may feel giddy just like a drunkard. What is happening to the drunkard? Hidden behind your ears is a sixth sense, the sense of balance. When you take any drink, any alcoholic thing, any intoxicating drug, it goes directly to the seat of balance in the ear and disturbs it. That’s why a drunkard cannot walk, feels dizzy.
The same happens in whirling. If you whirl, really, the effect will be the same: you will feel intoxicated, drunk. But enjoy ? this drunkenness is worth something. This being in a drunken state is what Sufis have been calling ecstasy, masti. In the beginning you may feel giddy, in the beginning sometimes you may feel nausea, but within two, three days, these feelings will disappear, and by the fourth day you will feel a new energy in you that you have never known before. Then giddiness will disappear, and just a smooth feeling of drunkenness will be there. So don’t try to be alert about what is happening. Let it happen and become one with the happening.
In the morning, alert; in the afternoon, half alert, half unalert; in the night, completely unalert. The circle is complete.
And then fall down on the ground on your stomach. If anybody feels any sort of pain in the navel center lying down on the ground, then he can turn on the back, otherwise not. If you feel something, a very deep painful sensation in the stomach, then turn on your back, otherwise not. The navel in contact with the earth will give you such a blissful feeling ? just the same as once you had, but now you have forgotten, when you were a child lying down on your mother’s breast, completely unaware of any worry, any anxiety, so one with the mother, your heart beating with her heart, your breath in tune with her breath. The same will happen with the earth, because earth is the mother. That’s why Hindus have been calling earth the mother and sky the father. Be rooted in it. Feel a merger as if you have dissolved. The body has become one with the earth; the form is there no more. Only earth exists; you are not there. This is what I mean when I say break the cup completely: forget that you are. The earth is, dissolve into it.
During the one hour of whirling the music will continue. Many will fall before the hour but everybody has to fall by the time the music stops. So if you feel that you are still not in the state of falling then go faster and faster. After forty-five minutes go completely mad, so by the time the hour is complete you have fallen. And the feeling of falling is beautiful, so don’t manipulate it. Fall, and when you have fallen then turn on your stomach, be merged, close your eyes. This merger has to be there for one hour.
So the night meditation will be of two hours, from seven o’clock to nine o’clock. Don’t eat anything before it. At nine o’clock the suggestion will be given to come out of this deep drunkenness, this ecstasy. Even out of it you may not be able to walk correctly, but don’t be disturbed, enjoy it. Then take your food and go to sleep.
Another new thing: I will not be there; only my empty chair will be there. But don’t miss me because in a sense I will be there, and in a sense there has always been an empty chair before you.
Right now the chair is empty because there is no one sitting in it.
I am talking to you but there is no one who is talking to you. It is difficult to understand, but when the ego disappears processes can continue. Talking can continue, sitting and walking and eating can continue, but the center has disappeared. Even now, the chair is empty. But I was always with you up till now in all the camps because you were not ready. Now I feel you are ready. And you must be helped to get more ready to work in my absence, because feeling that I am there you may feel a certain enthusiasm that is false. Just feeling that I am present you may do things which you never wanted to do; just under my influence you may exert more. That is not of much help, because only that can be helpful which comes out of your being. My chair will be there, I will be watching you, but you feel completely free. And don’t think that I am not there because that may depress you, and then that depression will disturb your meditation.
I will be there, and if you meditate rightly, whenever your meditation is exactly tuned, you will see me. So that will be the criterion of whether you are really meditating or not. Many of you will be able to see me more intensely than you can see me right now, and whenever you see me, you can be certain that things are happening in a right direction. So this will be the criterion. By the end of this camp I hope ninety percent of you will have seen me. Ten percent may miss because of their minds. So if you see me don’t start thinking about it, what is happening, don’t start thinking whether it is imagination or a projection or am I really there. Don’t think, because if you think, immediately I will disappear; thinking will become a barrier. The dust will come on the mirror and there will be no reflection. Whenever the dust is not there, suddenly you will become aware of me more than you can be aware here right now. To be aware of the physical body is not much awareness; to be aware of the nonphysical being is real awareness.
You must learn to work without me. You cannot be here always, you will have to go far away; you cannot hang around me forever, you have other work to do. You have come from different countries all over the world; you will have to go. For a few days you will be here with me, but if you become addicted to my physical presence, then rather than being a help it may become a disturbance, because then when you go away you will miss me. Your meditation should be such here that it can happen without my presence; then wherever you go the meditation will not be in any way affected.
And this too has to be remembered: I cannot always be in this physical body with you; one day or another the physical vehicle has to be dropped. My work is complete as far as I am concerned. If I am carrying this physical vehicle, it is just for you; some day it has to be dropped. Before it happens you must be ready to work in my absence, or in my nonphysical presence which means the same.
And once you can feel me in my absence you are free of me, and then even if I am not here in this body the contact will not be lost.
It always happens when a Buddha is there: his physical presence becomes so meaningful. Then, when he dies, everything is shattered. Even a disciple like Ananda, Gautam Buddha’s most intimate disciple, started crying and weeping when Buddha said: “Now I have to leave this body.” For forty years Ananda was with Buddha twenty-four hours, just like a shadow. He started crying and weeping like a child; suddenly he had become an orphan.
Buddha asked: “What are you doing?”
Ananda said: “It will be impossible now for me to grow. I couldn’t grow when you were there so how can I grow now? It may now be millions of lives before I come across a Buddha again, so I am lost.”
Buddha said: “My understanding is different, Ananda. When I am not there you may become enlightened immediately, because this has been my feeling ? you have become too much attached to me, and that attachment is working like a block. You have become too attached to me; that very attachment is working like a barrier.”
And this happened as Buddha said. The day Buddha died, Ananda became enlightened. There was nothing to cling to then. But why wait? When I die, then you will become enlightened? Why wait?
My chair can be empty; you can feel my absence. And remember, only when you can feel my absence can you feel my presence. If you cannot see me while my physical vehicle is not there, you have not seen me at all. This is my promise: I will be there in the empty chair, the empty chair will not really be empty. So behave ? the chair will not be empty! But it is better that you learn to be in contact with my nonphysical being. That is a deeper, more intimate touch and contact.
That is why I say a new phase of my work starts with this camp, and I am calling it a Samadhi Sadhana Shibir. It is not only meditation, it is absolute ecstasy that I am going to teach you. It is not only the first step, it is the last. Only no mind on your part is needed and everything is ready. Just be alert not to think much. The remaining time between these three meditations, remain more and more silent, don’t talk. If you want to do something, laugh, dance: do something intense and physical but not mental. Go for a long walk, go jogging in the grounds, jump under the sun, lie down on the earth, look at the sky, enjoy, but don’t allow the mind to function much. Laugh, cry, weep, but don’t think.
If you can be without thinking for these three meditations and the time between them, then after three, four days you will feel suddenly a burden has disappeared. The heart has become light, the body weightless and you are ready to take a jump into the unknown.
The last part of what you said to us is very beautiful and blissful, but the first part is very frightening ? breaking the cup, suffering, falling down on the ground, You not being there. Then our minds come in and we play tricks with our bodies. We say: “I have this pain. I have this blister….”
Can you give us some clue as to how we can get over the barriers we create for ourselves when we come up against fear?
Any conflict will create more barriers. If there is fear and you start doing something about it, then a new fear has entered: fear of the fear. It has become more complex. So the one thing to be done is, if fear is there, accept it. Don’t do anything about it because doing will not help. Anything that you do out of fear will create more fear; anything that you do out of confusion will add more to confusion. Don’t do anything.
If fear is there note down that fear is there and accept it. What can you do? Nothing can be done; fear is there. See, if you can just note down the fact that fear is there, where is the fear then? You have accepted it; it has dissolved. Acceptance dissolves; only acceptance, nothing else. If you fight you create another disturbance and this can go on ad infinitum, then there is no end to it.
People come to me and they say: “We are very afraid, what should we do?” If I give them something to do they will do it with the being which is full of fear, so action will come out of their fear. And the action that comes out of fear cannot be anything other than fear.
I have heard that Adolf Hitler was suffering from deep depression, melancholy, and psychologists were saying that it was due to some hidden inferiority complex. So all the Aryan psychologists were called. They tried but they couldn’t help, nothing came out of their analysis. So they suggested that a Jewish psychoanalyst should be called. Hitler was not ready in the beginning to call a Jew, but seeing no way out of it he had to yield. A great Jewish psychoanalyst was called. He analyzed, penetrated deep into Hitler’s mind, dreams, and then he suggested: “Nothing much is a problem. Simply repeat one thing continuously: ‘I am important, I am significant, I am indispensable.’ Let it be a mantra. Night, day, whenever you remember, repeat: ‘I am important, I am significant, I am indispensable.'”
Hitler said: “Stop! You are giving me bad advice.”
The psychoanalyst couldn’t understand. He said: “What do you mean? Why do you call this bad advice?”
Hitler said: “Because whatsoever I say, I am such a liar I cannot believe it. I am such a liar, whatsoever I say I cannot believe. If you say: Repeat ‘I am indispensable,’ I know that this is a lie. I am saying it. I am a liar.”
Out of lies, if you repeat something it will become a lie; out of fear, if you do something it will become a fear again. Out of hate, if you try to love, that love will just be a hidden hate; it cannot be anything else ? you are full of hate. Go to the preachers and they will say: “Try to love.” They are talking nonsense because how can a person who is full of hate try to love? If he tries to love, this love will come out of hatred; it will be poisoned already, poisoned from the very source. And this is what the misery of all preachers is.
Gandhi said to people who were violent: Try to be nonviolent. Then their nonviolence comes out of violence, so their nonviolence is just a façade, just a face to show. Deep down, they are boiling with violence. If your brahmacharya, your celibacy, comes out of too much sexuality, it will be perverted sex, nothing else.
So please don’t create any conflict.
If you have one problem, don’t create another; remain with the one, don’t fight and create another. It is easier to solve one problem than to solve another; and the first is near the source, the second will be removed. The further removed, the more impossible it becomes to solve it.
If you have fear, you have fear ? why make a problem out of it? Then you know that you have fear, just as you have two hands. Why create a problem out of it ? as if you have only one nose, not two? Why create a problem out of it? Fear is there: accept it, note it. Accept it, don’t bother about it. What will happen? Suddenly you will feel it has disappeared. And this is the inner alchemy ? a problem disappears if you accept it, and a problem grows more and more complex if you create any conflict with it. Yes, suffering is there, and suddenly fear comes ? accept it. It is there and nothing can be done about it. And when I say nothing can be done about it, don’t think that I am talking to you about pessimism. When I say nothing can be done about it I am giving you the key to solve it.
Suffering is there. It is part of life and part of growth; nothing is bad in it. Suffering becomes evil only when it is simply destructive and not creative at all; suffering becomes bad only when you suffer and nothing is gained out of it. But I am telling you the divine can be gained through suffering; then it becomes creative. Darkness is beautiful if the dawn is coming out of it soon; darkness is dangerous if it is endless, leads to no dawn, simply continues and continues and you go on moving in a rut, in a vicious circle.
This is what is happening to you. Just to escape from one suffering you create another; then to escape from another, another. And this goes on and on, and all those sufferings which you have not lived are waiting for you. You have escaped…and you escape from one suffering to another, because a mind which was creating a suffering will create another. So you can escape from this suffering to that, but suffering will be there because your mind is the creative force.
Accept the suffering and pass through it; don’t escape. This is a totally different dimension to work in. Suffering is there: encounter it, go through it. Fear will be there, accept it. You will tremble, so tremble. Why create a façade that you don’t tremble, that you are not afraid?
If you are a coward, accept it.
Everyone is a coward. People you call brave are just façades. Deep down they are as cowardly as anyone else; rather, more cowardly. Just to hide that cowardliness they have created a bravery around them, and sometimes they act in such a way that everyone knows they are not cowards. Their bravery is just a screen. How can man be brave?… Because death is there. How can man be brave?… Because man is just a leaf in the winds. How can the leaf help trembling? When the wind blows the leaf will tremble. But you never say to the leaf: “You are a coward.” You only say that the leaf is alive. So when you tremble and fear takes grip of you, you are a leaf in the wind. Beautiful ? why create a problem out of it? But society has created problems out of everything.
If a child is afraid in the dark, we say: “Don’t be afraid, be brave.” Why? The child is innocent ? naturally he feels fear in the dark. You force him: “Be brave.” So he also forces, then he becomes tense. Then he endures the darkness but now tense; now his whole being is ready to tremble and he suppresses it. This suppressed trembling will follow him now his whole life. It was good to tremble in the darkness, nothing was wrong. It was good to cry and run, nothing was wrong. The child would have come out of darkness more experienced, more knowing. And he would have realized, if he passed through darkness trembling and crying and weeping, that there was nothing to fear. Suppressed, you never experience the thing in its totality, you never gain anything out of it. Wisdom comes through suffering and wisdom comes through acceptance. Whatsoever the case, be at ease with it.
Don’t look to society and its condemnation. Nobody is to judge you here and nobody can pretend to be a judge. Don’t judge others and don’t be perturbed and disturbed by others’ judgment. You are alone and you are unique. You never were before, you never will be again. You are beautiful. Accept it. And whatsoever happens, allow it to happen and pass through it. Soon, suffering will be a learning; then it has become creative.
Fear will give you fearlessness. Out of anger will come compassion. Out of the understanding of hate, love will be born to you. But this happens not in a conflict, but in a passing-through with alert awareness. Accept, and pass through it. And if you make it a point to pass through every experience, then there will be death, the most intense experience. Life is nothing before it because life cannot be so intense as death.
Life is spread out over a long time ? seventy years, one hundred years. Death is intense because it is not spread out ? it is in a single moment. Life has to pass one hundred years or seventy years, it cannot be so intense. Death comes in a single moment; it comes whole, not fragmentary. It will be so intense you cannot know anything more intense. But if you are afraid, if before death comes you have escaped, you have become unconscious because of the fear, you have missed one of the golden opportunities, the golden gate. If your whole life you have been accepting things, when death comes, patiently, passively you will accept and enter into it without any effort to escape. If you can enter death passively, silently, without any effort, death disappears. When Krishna, Christ, Buddha, Mahavira say you are deathless, they are not talking about a doctrine, they are talking about their own experience.
This can happen here in this camp also, because samadhi is death, dhyan is death, meditation is death. Many times there will be moments when you will suddenly feel you are dying. Don’t escape, allow it to happen. If you allow it to happen, death has gone, death is there no more, and the inner flame, beginningless, endless, has come into being. It has always been there, now you can feel it.
So this should be the sutra. With fear, hate, jealousy, anything whatsoever, don’t create a problem out of it. Accept it, allow it, pass through it, and you will defeat all suffering, all death. And you will become a jinna ? a victorious one.
When you talk about our having to suffer, you tell us to be joyful at the same time. Trying to compromise these two things seems difficult.
When I say suffer joyfully it looks paradoxical and your mind starts thinking how to compromise both, because to you they are contradictory. They are not, they only appear contradictory. You can enjoy suffering.
What is the secret ? how to enjoy suffering? The first thing is: if you don’t escape, if you allow the suffering to be there, if you are ready to face it, if you are not trying somehow to forget it, then you are different. Suffering is there but just around you; it is not in the center, it is on the periphery. It is impossible for suffering to be in the center; it is not in the nature of things. It is always on the periphery and you are the center.
So when you allow it to happen, you don’t escape, you don’t run, you are not in a panic, suddenly you become aware that suffering is there on the periphery as if happening to someone else, not to you, and you are looking at it. A subtle joy spreads all over your being because you have realized one of the basic truths of life, that you are bliss and not suffering.
So when I say enjoy it I don’t mean become a masochist; I don’t mean create suffering for yourself and enjoy it. I don’t mean: go on, fall down from a cliff, have fractures and then enjoy it ? no. There are people of that type and many of them have become ascetics, tapasvis, and they are creating suffering for themselves. They are masochists, they are ill. They are very dangerous people. They wanted to make others suffer but they were not so courageous. They wanted to kill others, be violent with others, cripple others, but they were not so courageous, so their whole violence has turned within. Now they are crippling themselves, torturing themselves, and enjoying it.
I am not saying be a masochist; I am simply saying suffering is there, you need not seek for it.
Enough suffering is there already, you need not go in search. Suffering is already there; life by its very nature creates suffering. Illness is there, death is there, the body is there ? by their very nature suffering is created. See it, look at it with a very dispassionate eye. Look at it ? what it is, what is happening. Don’t escape. Immediately the mind says: “Escape from here, don’t look at it.” But if you escape then you cannot be blissful.
Next time you fall ill and the doctor suggests to remain in bed, take it as a blessing. Close your eyes and rest on the bed and just look at the illness. Watch it, what it is. Don’t try to analyze it, don’t go into theories, just watch it, what it is. The whole body tired, feverish ? watch it. Suddenly you will feel that you are surrounded by fever but there is a very cool point within you; the fever cannot touch it, cannot influence it. The whole body may be burning but that cool point cannot be touched.
I have heard about one Zen nun. She died, but before she died she asked her disciples: “What do you suggest? How should I die?”
It is an old tradition in Zen that masters ask. They can die consciously, so they can ask. And they are so playful even about death, so humorous about it, joking, laughing, they enjoy devising methods how to die.
So disciples may suggest: “Master, this will be good; die standing on your head.” Or someone suggests: “Walking…because we have never seen anyone die walking.”
So this Zen nun asked: “What do you suggest?”
They said: “It will be good if we prepare a fire, and you sit in it and die meditating.”
She said: “This is beautiful and never heard of before.” So they pre-pared a funeral pyre, the nun made herself comfortable in it, sat in a buddha posture, and then they lit the fire.
One man from the crowd asked: “How does it feel there? It is so hot that I cannot even come nearer to ask you ? that’s why I am shouting. How does it feel there?”
The nun laughed and said: “Only a fool can ask such a question: How does it feel there? There it always feels cool, perfectly cool.”
She is talking of her inner being, the center. There it is always cool, and only a foolish person can ask. Why does she say that only a foolish person can ask? It is obvious. When a person is ready to sit in the fire meditating, and then the fire is burnt and she is sitting silently, obviously it shows that this person must have achieved the innermost cool point which cannot be disturbed by any fire; otherwise, it is not possible.
So when you are lying on your bed feverish, on fire, the whole body burning, just watch it. Watching, you will recede towards the source. Watching, you will gain balance, a rhythm. Watching, not doing anything…what can you do? The fever is there, you have to pass through it; it is no use unnecessarily fighting with it. You are resting, and if you fight with the fever you will become more feverish, that’s all. So watch it. Watching fever, you become cool; watching more, you become cooler. Just watching, you reach to a peak, such a cool peak, even the Himalayas will feel jealous; even their peaks are not so cool. This is the Gourishankar, the Everest within. And when you feel that the fever has disappeared…. It has never really been there; it has only been in the body, very, very far away.
Infinite space exists between you and your body ? infinite space, I say. An unbridgeable gap exists between you and your body. And all suffering exists on the periphery. Hindus say it is a dream because the distance is so vast, unbridgeable. It is just like a dream happening somewhere else ? not happening to you ? in some other world, on some other planet.
When you watch suffering suddenly you are not the sufferer, and you start enjoying. Through suffering you become aware of the opposite pole, the blissful inner being. So when I say enjoy, I am saying: Watch. Return to the source, get centered. Then, suddenly, there is no agony; only ecstasy exists. Those who are on the periphery exist in agony. For them, no ecstasy. For those who have come to their center no agony exists. For them, only ecstasy.
When I say break the cup, it is breaking the periphery. And when I say be totally empty, it is coming back to the original source, because through emptiness we are born and into emptiness we return. Emptiness is the word, really, which is better to use than God, because with God we start feeling there is some person. So Buddha never uses God, he always uses shunyata ? emptiness, nothingness. In the center you are a non-being, nothingness, just a vast space, eternally cool, silent, blissful. So when I say enjoy I mean watch, and you will enjoy. When I say enjoy, I mean don’t escape.