God is Dead, Now Zen is the Only Living Truth Chapter 5 God is yourinsecurity

CHAPTER 5

God is your insecurity

10 February 1989 pm in Gautam the Buddha Auditorium

OUR BELOVED MASTER, SEKITO WROTE: THE MIND OF THE GREAT SAGE OF INDIA WAS INTIMATELY COMMUNICATED FROM INDIA TO CHINA. IN HUMAN BEINGS THERE ARE WISE MEN AND FOOLS, BUT ON THE WAY THERE IS NO NORTHERN OR SOUTHERN TEACHER. THE MYSTERIOUS SOURCE IS CLEAR AND BRIGHT, THE BRANCHING STREAMS FLOW THROUGH THE DARKNESS. TO BE ATTACHED TO THE RELATIVE, THIS IS ILLUSION, BUT TO TAKE TO ONESELF THE ABSOLUTE IS NOT ENLIGHTENMENT. EACH AND ALL THE ELEMENTS OF THE SUBJECTIVE AND OBJECTIVE SPHERES ARE RELATED, AND AT THE SAME TIME INDEPENDENT; RELATED, YET WORKING DIFFERENTLY, THOUGH EACH KEEPS ITS OWN PLACE. FORM MAKES THE CHARACTER AND APPEARANCE DIFFERENT; SOUND, TASTE, SMELL, DISTINGUISH COMFORT AND DISCOMFORT. THE DARK MAKES ALL THINGS ONE; THE BRIGHTNESS MAKES ALL THINGS DIFFERENT. THE FOUR ELEMENTS RETURN TO THEIR NATURE, AS A CHILD TO ITS MOTHER. FIRE IS HOT, WIND MOVES, WATER IS WET, EARTH HARD. EYES SEE, EARS HEAR; THE NOSE SMELLS, THE TONGUE TASTES, ONE SALT, ANOTHER SOUR.

EACH IS INDEPENDENT OF THE OTHER, BUT THE DIFFERENT LEAVES COME FROM THE SAME ROOT. Friends, first the questions. The first question: Question 1 COULD ONE SUMMARIZE THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A GOD-ORIENTED RELIGION AND THE QUALITY OF RELIGIOUSNESS AS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A JUDGE EXTERNAL TO US, A PROJECTED CONSCIENCE, AND A WITNESS WITHIN OUR CONSCIOUSNESS? The difference between God-oriented religions and the religions without God is immense. The Godoriented religions are simply fiction. But lies told again and again and again start appearing to be almost true. God as the ultimate lie creates many lies around itself, because no lie can stand alone. Because no lie is self-evident, it needs other lies to support it; hence, all God-oriented religions have created many lies to support God. Truth can stand on its own legs, but not a lie. Truth needs no argument, but not a lie; a lie needs many arguments, many fabricated proofs, many imaginary evidences. Truth is utterly naked ­ either you know it or you don't. God-oriented religions are a disease of the soul, a sickness of the mind, because God is only your fear, your dread, your anxiety, your insecurity. And then comes prayer, and then comes the priest, and then comes the organized religion, the church. True religiousness cannot be God-oriented. True religiousness is your own interiority, your own inner space. And you can see the differences between these two kinds of people. Those who follow a Godoriented religion don't show any compassion, don't show any ecstasy, don't show any blissfulness. On the contrary, they are very violent, they are very much against freedom. They are in constant fear that somebody will object to their lies and they will not be able to answer, because all that they have is only a belief system. A belief system can help you to forget your ignorance, but it does not destroy it. So the God-oriented man lives in ignorance and believes that he knows. And mere words, theories, hypotheses, are not going to change your character. They can at the most make you a hypocrite. They can give you a beautiful mask but not the original face. They can create a very convenient personality, but they cannot create or discover your beautiful individuality. And the personality, however convenient, is a heavy weight on your chest, on your heart, because you are living a lie. Nobody can feel at ease when he is living a lie. The man who has no belief system, but has encountered truth itself, suddenly finds himself changing into a new man. There is no effort involved. Grace comes by itself, compassion comes by itself, violence disappears, fear disappears, death and birth disappear. One starts feeling at home with the universe. There is no tension, one is absolutely relaxed. This is our home. One stops searching and seeking, one starts living, dancing, loving. Knowing one's own interiormost center is also knowing the center of the universe itself. Doors of all the mysteries open ­ not that you start getting answers, you become more mysterious.

All answers are mind products. Questions arise out of the mind, and answers are also from the same mind. Neither the questions lead you towards the truth, nor the answers. Answers only repress your questions, but they will surface again and again. A man without God finds himself in total aloneness. He has nowhere to go except withinwards. All roads leading out are meaningless; they don't lead you anywhere because there is nobody outside, no God, no paradise. Removing God is a great rebellion, and an absolute necessity to be awakened, to be enlightened. God is holding millions of people outside their own consciousness. And God being a fiction, your prayer is false, and your religiousness is imposed. Hence, all these religions demand: "Do this, don't do that." Everything is imposed from the outside. And whenever something is imposed from the outside, your dignity is destroyed, your individuality is crushed. Your freedom turns into slavery, and the ugliest slavery is spiritual slavery. With God you can only be a slave. With God you can never be liberated. Liberation begins with liberating yourself from God and all the lies that surround him. Liberation brings you to your own very center, and there you find a totally different experience that is not of the mind; it is of pure silence, truth and beauty, of eternity, of life as a constant festival. And because you experience this festivity inside you, it starts overflowing you. In your actions you become graceful, your eyes start shining with love, with depth, your very movement shows a centered, balanced, harmonious being. Your words carry something of that which is beyond words. Your silence is no longer the silence of a cemetery, it is not dead. It is very alive, throbbing, it has a heartbeat, it is a silent dance of pure awareness. It is a silent song without any sounds, but it is immensely alive. Anything imposed from outside destroys you, your freedom, your individuality. Your inner space is completely closed, and it is closed in such a beautiful way that you never think that your parents, your teachers, your priests, your leaders, politicians ­ all kinds of so-called wise men ­ are poisonous. With all good intentions they are poisoning every child. And God is the original sin, original sin because we created a great lie, the ultimate lie. Once I was in a court for the first time, in a strange case. There used to be a Christian church, a very beautiful church with a vast ground around it, huge ancient trees... You will be surprised that Indian Christianity is the oldest Christianity in the world. One of Jesus Christ's closest disciples, Thomas, came to India directly. His gospel is not included in the Bible, because his gospel was written in India, but it is the most beautiful gospel. Those four gospels included in the New Testament are nothing compared to it. Thomas became a transformed man here, because he started seeing the difference between Godoriented religion and a religion without a God. A religion without a God gives man dignity, because man becomes the ultimate evolved consciousness in the whole of existence. It gives man freedom from a burden imposed by the priest in the name of God. And you have asked, "Could one summarize the difference between a God-oriented religion and the quality of religiousness as the difference between a judge external to us...?"

There is no judge, and there is no religiousness in a God-oriented religion. It is mere theology, it is a mind-projection. It is not existential, it is not experiential. And you are asking, "Could one summarize the difference between a God-oriented religion...?" First remember, the God-oriented religion is only a name. God is fiction, so anything oriented in God cannot be anything else but a lie. And secondly, you are asking, "and the quality of religiousness...?" The God-oriented so-called religion has no religiousness in it. It has a certain morality, it has a certain discipline imposed against nature. God is the enemy of nature, because nature is truth and God is a lie. But the lie is dominating millions of people and telling them to withdraw from nature, which is the only truth. So there is no religiousness in a God-oriented person. What he has is a morality, which is nothing but a social convenience. It differs from place to place, from country to country, from race to race. What seems to be religious to one fragment of humanity is not religious to another fragment of humanity, because every society has its own climate, its own heritage, its own past ­ which is different from other societies. For example, the Hindu concept of heaven is that of a centrally air-conditioned place. Not that they have used the centrally air-conditioned word, but they say, "The whole day a cool breeze, fragrant, blows; it is never hot in heaven." Obviously, it shows that the people who have projected this lie are living in a hot country, and they don't want to live eternally in a hot place. The Tibetans have their heaven very warm, no snow at all; no winter ever happens in their heaven. They suffer from cold and winter and snow. They are projecting something which they can tolerate eternally. This life is small, but to suffer the same thing eternally would be too much. The human mind is too frail, too weak. Just watch what each country thinks of as religious. In India, you have to take a morning bath before sunrise, and do your prayer, and only then can you eat anything, your breakfast ­ not before that. In the religious scriptures of Tibet it says you should take a bath at least once a year. But the trouble is that people go on carrying their concepts even though they move into different climates. One of my friends, a very scholarly brahmin, wanted to go to Tibet. He was very interested in the Tibetan language and Tibetan scriptures. I said to him, "All that literature is available. You don't have to go to Tibet. And you will not be able to remain there for more than two days." He said, "Why not?" I said, "How will you manage a bath before sunrise? And without a bath you cannot take your breakfast. You cannot eat anything unless you do your prayer, but the prayer needs ­ an absolute necessity ­ that you take a bath." But he didn't listen to me. He went to Tibet, and after just two days he was back. He could not even reach Lhasa, he returned back from Ladakh, which is just in between Tibet and India. Even Ladakh gave him too much trouble.

Taking an early morning bath in Ladakh can kill you. It is ice cold. So he came back, he did not go further. I said, "What happened? It is just two days and you are back?" He said, "You were right. I am a brahmin and I follow my religion. I cannot remain without a bath." Tibetan lamas came with the Dalai Lama as he escaped from Tibet when China invaded it. So hundreds of lamas came with him. I was holding a camp in Bodhgaya, the place where Gautam Buddha became enlightened. In the same campus, by the side of the same tree exactly, I was taking a meditation camp. And a group of Tibetan lamas came to pay their respects to the tree under which Gautam Buddha had become enlightened. You will not believe it, even from far away they stank. They were still following the idea that you should take one bath every year ­ in India! It was a hot summer and they were perspiring. And they were still using the same kind of clothes as they used in Tibet ­ layer upon layer. There are many layers of clothes, and these were so dirty, so oily, and dust had gathered on the oily clothes. They were good in Tibet, they prevented any cold reaching to the person's body, but in India...! They had not changed. I asked them, "Do you understand that all kinds of so-called religions are social conveniences. It was good in Tibet but here you are being stupid. So many layers of clothes upon clothes, you are being insane!" But they said, "Our religion says one bath a year is absolutely necessary. More than that is luxury. More than that is condemned, it is dangerous." And to make people afraid that if you go against the dictates of your scriptures you will fall into hell, they said, "It is better to stink than to fall into hell." I said, "That's right. You are already in hell. I don't think that the devil is even going to allow you into hell, because in no scripture of the world is it said that the devil stinks; he is a gentleman, a nice fellow." I said to those people, "You just keep these clothes on in India and they will save you from hell. As the devil starts sniffing you, he will close the doors: `Tibetan lamas no longer allowed! You go to the other place.'" Jesus used to drink alcohol. Now in India no religion can conceive that a man of understanding, a man who is enlightened, could drink alcohol. I don't see any problem, because if the body is illusory, the alcohol is going into the body, not into the soul. It is called spirit, but don't think that it is spiritual. It does not go into your spirit. It may affect your mind, and you may fall unconscious, but still it is not touching your consciousness at all, because the mind and brain are part of the body. Mind is the program and the brain is the computer that is programmed.

When a child is born, he has a brain but no mind. Mind is nothing but the whole collection of information, knowledge; it is the programming. So the brain will be affected by alcohol, but not your spirituality. So what is the problem? To me there is no problem. Even a buddha can once in a while have a little drink, enjoy a little party ­ Italian style. In Italy, "party" means something absolutely different to what you understand. It is a real party, with two partners. But why prohibit a buddha from enjoying a little party, a little spaghetti, a little wine? All these things are material, and they don't touch your spiritual being. But in India nobody can conceive that a buddha would drink ­ even tea he will not drink. One cannot think of Mahavira... The reason is simple. In this hot climate, drinking alcohol is not needed, but in a cold climate, alcohol is absolutely necessary. It keeps you warm; it does not make you intoxicated, it only keeps you warm. And there is no harm in feeling warm when snow is falling all around you. So in a cold country the morality will be different. In a hot country the morality will be different. This is just an example. On every point, different climates will create different moralities. Mohammed said to the Mohammedans, "You can marry four women." The reason was that in Saudi Arabia at that time, fourteen hundred years ago, the proportion of men to women was four women to one man. And it happened because the men were continuously fighting. It was a tribal world, and every tribe was fighting with another tribe. Of course, men were being killed, and women remained. So the proportion became such that there were four women to one man. So I don't condemn Mohammed, he was making it convenient for the society. Otherwise, what will three women do? They will disturb the whole society. They will start having love affairs with married people; they will become prostitutes. And such a vast number of prostitutes will create so much ugliness and perversion. It was better that a man married four women. And strangely enough... I have been in deep contact with a few Mohammedans who have been my friends. I was amazed. I used to think, theoretically, that one woman was enough to drive a man either insane or enlightened ­ the only two alternatives. What will four women do to a man? But my actual experience, when I came into contact with Mohammedans who had four wives, was totally different. That's what I always say, that theoretically something may look logical, but life has no obligation to follow your logic. I was surprised that the Mohammedan house has no quarrel the way one man and one woman are continuously nagging and fighting and jealous. The reason is, those four women are fighting amongst themselves, the man is simply out of it. They are not much concerned about the man, the whole question is about four women. So the man is far happier than anybody who lives with one woman. I asked those friends, "What is the matter? One woman drives people either insane or they renounce the world ­ really it is renouncing the woman ­ and they become enlightened."

And now I understand why no Mohammedan has ever been enlightened. They are very normal people, they don't even go insane either. It is those four women fighting amongst themselves, and the man is simply out of the game. He can watch the game, but he is no longer part of it. But now the proportion is not the same as then. In a country like India, the proportion of men to women is exactly the same, and now even in Saudi Arabia the proportion is exactly the same. Now, to go on marrying four women in Saudi Arabia will create problems and inconvenience for the society, because three men will be left without wives. Now these three men will create trouble. They will have love affairs with other people's wives. And always remember, the other person's wife is far more beautiful than your own wife, far greener ­ just as the lawn of the neighbor looks so green that you want to chew it. The neighbor's wife also you want to chew. The French actually have an expression. When you are in deep love in France, tell the woman, "I want to eat you," and she will be immensely happy. But only the French do that much. If you say that in India ­ that I want to eat you ­ the woman will give such a scream. And soon you will be arrested by the police: "What did you say to that woman that she was screaming so loudly?" And if you say, "I was just telling her I love her, and I told her, `I want to eat you'..." Even language changes, just as morals change, as religions change, according to climate, according to tradition, according to their past. I have heard about a very great French warrior. In the Middle Ages the warriors were always going on a crusade. The Christians were going to kill Mohammedans, and they were going to kill Jews, or convert them into Christians. The only chance was, if you want to stay alive, be a Christian; otherwise be finished. So the warrior was going, but he had a very beautiful wife. In the Middle Ages in Europe, they used to have locks. When the husband went out for a few days, he would put a certain lock on the woman's vagina. It was a belt with a lock, and strange locks were developed, so that nobody could make love to the woman. And a few locks, which the richer people used, had a knife inside. Anything entering the lock, and the knife would simply fall on it. They are exhibited in the great museums of Europe, particularly in London. So the warrior who was going away for months ­ and maybe it would take a year or two ­ locked his wife. But he was worried about taking the key with him, because it was war and if the key was lost it would be very difficult to open the lock. You would need to call some locksmith or somebody who could make another key. But it would be very embarrassing. So he called his best friend, and he told him, "I am going on a crusade, and I trust you, you are my best friend, so keep this key. When I come back I will take the key from you. This is the key of my wife's lock." The friend said, "Don't be worried." And just five minutes after the warrior had gone on his horse, he saw his friend coming fast on his horse. The warrior stopped and asked, "What is the matter?" The friend said, "You have given me the wrong key." Just five minutes after! When the number of men and women are not in proportion, what Mohammed said is good, there is nothing wrong in it. But it belonged to his time and the situation. It has now become a rule amongst Mohammedans, and because they cannot find so many wives in their own religion, they go on abducting other people's wives.

In India it is a game. You just catch hold of somebody's wife... and Hindus are very fussy about it. Once the wife has remained one night outside the house, she is finished. She cannot enter the husband's house again, the husband won't allow it. She cannot enter her parents' home again, the parents will throw her out because she has degraded their respectability, their prestige: "Just go and commit suicide, there is no other way." Rather than committing suicide the woman returns to the Mohammedan. That seems to be saner and more logical. A woman has to be out of the house just for one night. It does not matter whether she has made love to anybody or not. This is how Indian Mohammedans go on increasing their population. Obviously, one man with four wives, can give at least four children per year. The same is not possible for four husbands and one wife. They may not even give one child ­ the four husbands may kill the child before it is born. So remember, your God-oriented religions are only conveniences for the society. They should not be called religions, they are only moral precepts to keep the society together, and in the least inconvenient way. It is not religiousness. Religiousness arises only as a blossoming of your own consciousness. God-oriented religions certainly create a conscience, but not consciousness. And many people have the false notion that conscience and consciousness are one. Their root is one, but they are two separate branches moving in different, diametrically opposite directions. Conscience is forced on you by others. Consciousness is an evolution rising from your own depths to the ultimate heights. Conscience is just like a plastic flower. Once I had a neighbor. I had a beautiful garden with all kinds of flowers and all kinds of trees. And of course, he was jealous. So what he did... I could see only one of his windows. I could not see his whole house from my house. Tall trees hid the house from my garden, but one window was available for me to see ­ he brought a pot and arranged plastic flowers in it. And just to deceive me, because plastic flowers don't need watering, he would water them every day just to show me that he also had flowers. But I saw that the flowers remained the same ­ six months passed and the same flowers. I said, "He has found a great flowering tree!" So one day I jumped over my boundary wall and went close to the window. And I could not believe what kind of idiot he was. He had brought plastic flowers with plastic leaves and planted them in a flowerpot. And just to deceive me that they were real, he had to water them. He would only water when I was there to show me that his flowers were real. Plastic flowers are very permanent flowers. In fact, scientists are worried that plastic is one of the things the earth cannot absorb. And now so many plastic things are being thrown into the ocean, into the earth, that they are destroying the whole ecology. Plastic is something eternal. A tree grows out of the earth, a man grows out of the earth; you put the tree back into the earth and it will disappear into its basic elements. But plastic is man-made. You can put it into the earth and after many years you can dig and find the plastic exactly the same, nothing has changed. It is because of the American idea of using a thing once and throwing it away. It is cleaner, but it is dangerous. The whole bottom of the ocean around America is full of plastic things: plastic bags, plastic syringes; everything is plastic: plastic covers, plastic toys.

And those layers of plastic have created something strange. Millions of fish have died because the plastic has made the water poisonous. Its aliveness has gone, it has become dead. And the fear is growing every day that more plastic thrown into the oceans, into the rivers, into the earth, will make everything dead; everything will be plastic. I knocked on his window. He came, and I said, "You have got great flowers. I have got very poor flowers; in the morning they blossom, by the evening they are gone. Although you have got only one pot, it is better than my whole garden." He was very much embarrassed. And I said, "You are a very intelligent man. You have been watering these plastic flowers." He had not a single word to say. His wife came behind him and said, "You are saying he is intelligent. He is an idiot. I have been telling him that plastic flowers don't need water." I told his wife, "You don't know. He was not watering the plastic flowers, he was trying to deceive me. And that's why I had to climb over the wall, committing an illegal act, to make him aware that he cannot deceive. These plastic flowers have been there for six months, and they will remain forever. This man will die, you will die," I told his wife, "but these plastic flowers will remain. They are immortal beings. But they are dead, that's why they are immortal ­ already dead." You cannot kill a dead man, can you? Once a man is dead he becomes immortal. You cannot kill him twice. Resurrection has happened only once, and that was also false. Once a man dies there is no more death. This is the difference between imposed morality and religion, and an inner growth of consciousness. They are totally different. Perhaps only in the French language are conscience and consciousness equivalent. But I am not certain, I don't know French. But I have a certain feeling that in French those two words are not different: conscience is used for both conscience and consciousness, but it is absolutely wrong. The French linguists have to change it. Conscience is God-oriented; consciousness is your own innermost being flowering. Then you have a spontaneous response to situations. The God-oriented morality cannot have a spontaneity in it. It consults what the holy scripture is saying, what Moses is saying, what Jesus is saying, it has to consult its memory system. But spontaneity has not to consult anybody ­ Manu, Moses, Mohammed, nobody. Spontaneous action simply arises in you, and because it arises in you it has an authenticity, an honesty. Then you are functioning as an individual, not as a sheep. You are functioning as a human being with dignity and splendor and honor. A God-oriented religion takes away everything that is beautiful in you and leaves behind just a dilapidated human being, crippled in every possible way, exploited by all kinds of parasites. God is the ultimate parasite. He goes on threatening you. Of course, because there is no God the priest is the spokesman, and he goes on threatening you: "You will be thrown into hell if you don't listen to me. I represent God." It is a pure invention of the priesthood all over the world, to dominate man, to exploit man. And what they are saying to the people, they themselves don't believe. How can they believe? They know it is a fiction. But it is a very good profession, it is a good business.

Just the other day, the archbishop of Jerusalem ­ which is a holy land for three religions, Jews, Christians, Mohammedans ­ the archbishop of this holy city was arrested in London because he was misbehaving in the railway station public toilet, exposing himself, exhibiting his sexual machinery to other people. And this is the archbishop of Jerusalem! One cannot believe that these people go on teaching celibacy to others, and they themselves behave in such stupid ways. I have told you, three bishops were going to Pittsburgh. But the woman at the window where they had to get their tickets had such beautiful tits.... The youngest bishop was sent to purchase the tickets. When he saw the tits of the woman, he forgot everything. He said, "Just give me three tickets for Tittsburgh." The woman was very angry, and the bishop felt very ashamed, so he came back. He said, "Forgive me, but I forgot myself completely." So the second one said, "Don't be worried. I will go." As he gave the money, he told the girl, "Give me the change in dimes and nipples." The girl was furious. She said, "You are all idiots of the same type! Can't you behave like human beings?" He ran away. And the oldest bishop said, "Don't be worried. I will take care." He went there, and he said, "Woman, you will be in trouble... If you go showing your tits like this, at the pearly gates Saint Finger will show his Peter to you!" What to do with these people? Once you repress something it is bound to come up. You simply become a fool. Now all three bishops proved to be utterly foolish and absolute idiots. But they are victims of a constant harassment by religion, by their abbots, by their popes ­ against nature. All moralities are against nature, and in favor of a certain social structure. And the social structure is man-made, it is not perfect, it needs to be changed. But all moralities, God-oriented religions, are protective of the social structure. They are against any revolution. They don't have any consciousness. They have created in place of consciousness a bogus conscience that is plastic consciousness. What they call conscience is simply implanted, it is programmed in you. So you have to act accordingly, but your inner being is not in favor. So when you want to say, "Pittsburgh," your inner being says, "Tittsburgh." When you want to say, "Saint Peter," your nature says, "Saint Finger will show his Peter." This dichotomy is created by your God-oriented religions. Man is suffering from schizophrenia, neurosis, psychosis ­ all kinds of mental diseases ­ because of one fiction that he cannot drop. Just drop God, and you will find yourself saner, natural, and a certain beauty will come to you which only comes to natural beings. If you believe in a God, you are bound to be afraid of his judgment. But if there is no God, there is no judgment. You have only a witness, and a witness is not a judge. A witness is only a mirror. It shows you clearly the situation, and it gives you a spontaneous response. Then it has tremendous beauty and harmony, and your life is without any regret. You don't look back, you remain constantly in the present, just a witness, acting, responding to whatever encounters you according to your own consciousness.

And remember one thing. Even if you fall in hell, but you have lived spontaneously and according to your consciousness, you will not regret it. On the other hand, if you enter heaven because others forced you to act according to certain precepts, certain commandments, you will regret even in heaven that you have not lived your life according to your own nature. There is only one blissfulness in the world, and that is to be in accordance with your nature, with your existence. Don't bother about any commandments, don't bother about any disciplines, don't bother about any morality. Just live according to your own consciousness, and go on growing your consciousness. Soon you will see the spring and all the flowers will bring a clarity of vision, and a certainty of action, a totality to every response. And your every response will be beautiful, because it will be coming out of a growing consciousness. Conscience is borrowed. Consciousness is your nature. The difference is vast. Question 2 The second question: IT SEEMS LIFE IS NOT THE ULTIMATE VALUE, THE MECHANICAL MAN IS EXPENDABLE. GOD IS NOTHING MORE THAN A SICK FANTASY; OBVIOUSLY, THAT CANNOT BE THE ULTIMATE VALUE. WHAT THEN, DOES THAT LEAVE US WITH? With nothing... just yourself. Once God is no more, there you are, alone and responsible. People are clinging to God for a certain reason. They are throwing all the responsibility on God. He will take care, all that we have to do is to go to the church every Sunday ­ that's enough ­ and God will take care. But you don't know. The moment you give your responsibility to God, you have also given your freedom into his hands, you have become a puppet. Once you know God is just a sick fantasy, that very understanding will make you healthy and whole. And your wholeness, your aloneness, is such a beautiful experience, you don't need any value, any ultimate value. You are the ultimate value. Your very being, when discovered in its totality, is a Gautam Buddha. You don't need any other value as an incentive to make the journey towards the goal. All that you need is to drop all sick fantasies. Then all your religions will disappear from the earth, and that will leave you absolutely healthy. Out of that health and aloneness, out of that freedom, you will find your ultimate peaks and ultimate depths. And this is what can be called the real meaning, the real significance, the ultimate value. You are the ultimate value. It is because of a sick fantasy that you are not looking at yourself, you are looking at the stars. Question 3 The third question: PRIMITIVE SOCIETIES HAVE ALWAYS CONCEPTUALIZED GOD AS PARTS OF THE ENVIRONMENT, SUCH AS RIVERS, TREES, AND THE SUN AND MOON. AS SOCIETIES

BECAME MORE CIVILIZED, THEY BEGAN TO CONCEPTUALIZE GOD AS A SEPARATE INDIVIDUAL. WHY IS THIS? Primitive societies had no private property. Primitive societies had no families, they were tribal. Nobody knew who was the father, people only knew about uncles and the mother. Primitive societies were matriarchal; the mother was the only person they knew, the father had not yet arrived. As societies started moving from hunting to cultivation, they stopped being gypsies; otherwise they were continuously moving wherever there was the possibility of finding more animals to hunt. They could not remain in one place, because soon the food was finished. And as animals were moving away from them, they had to follow the animals. Their whole concern was how to get food. There were no houses, there were no cities, there were only temporary camps. Private property had not yet arisen. With cultivation, private property came into being. The people who were stronger managed to get as much land as they wanted. The people who were weaker managed to live at the very minimum ­ whatever was left over from the stronger gangsters. Those strong criminals became finally your kings, and your lords, and your counts. These are basically criminal people, who have deprived humanity of much of their joys, forced them into a corner. But once private property arose, the father had to be certain that his son was his son. With private property the family came into being. And with private property the woman was transformed into a subhuman species. She became imprisoned. Now she was nothing but property, the property of a certain man. And her whole function was to be a factory to reproduce children. Tribal people have no idea of a father, but the tribal people and the primitive knew many things that we have forgotten: they felt life surging in the trees; they felt life moving in the rivers; they felt life in the tidal waves of the ocean, shattering continuously, eternally on the seashore. They were more sensitive people. They were illiterate, uncivilized, but they were more sensitive and more receptive. I have heard about the native Australians. Most of them have been killed by the white man, and killed in such an ugly way that the white man seems to be the most barbarious man on the earth. The native Australians were killed almost like animals. People used to go hunting the natives, because they thought them to be not human beings, but a far lower species. So almost ninety percent of the natives of Australia have been killed, and eaten, by the white people, because it was hunting. Just as you hunt tigers and lions and deer, you were hunting a different species from humanity. They were not white, their faces were different, their behavior was different. But I have heard about the natives of Australia ­ and a few scientists are still working on the project ­ that they had a very strange way. They had no post office, they had no telephone system, they had no wireless. They used to hypnotize a tree, a particular tree which is more hypnotizable. Their sensitivity must have found the right kind of tree that is ready to be hypnotized. In humanity thirty-three percent of people are immediately capable of being hypnotized, only thirtythree percent. But strangely enough, only thirty-three percent of people are intelligent; they are the same people. Only thirty-three percent of people are creative; they are the same people. The remaining ones are insensitive, unreceptive, unintelligent.

The natives of Australia have found which tree is more hypnotizable, so each village has its own hypnotized tree. And through the tree they used to send messages to another tree in another village. For example, somebody's son has gone to another village, and the father wants to send a message to him. When the son was leaving, the father would say, "If I have to send a message to you, I will send it exactly when the sun is rising. At that time you listen to the hypnotized tree in that village." It may be hundreds of miles away. And early, exactly when the sun is rising, the father will go to the tree of his village if he wants to send a message to the son. He will tell the tree, "Please inform the tree in a certain village where my son must be waiting for a message..." And then he will tell the tree the message, and the son will be listening to the tree a hundred miles away. And the message was received, "You can stay two days more, but finish the work" ­ or any message. For thousands of years they practiced it, but slowly slowly they have forgotten, most of them have forgotten how to hypnotize, because Christianity is forcing them into schools to learn to read. And Christianity is absolutely against hypnotism. It thinks it is something to do with the devil. Hypnotism or mesmerism or anything is accounted dangerous. So they have destroyed, along with the natives, those trees, which had been hypnotized for centuries. They had become so sensitive that they immediately sent the message to the other tree hundreds of miles away, maybe thousands of miles away. The space did not matter, nor the distance. Primitive man was very sensitive because he lived with trees, he lived with animals, he lived with rivers, he lived with oceans, he lived with mountains. He was part of nature. The primitive man had no religion, no organized church, no priesthood. Obviously, the primitive man was aware of a surging life all around. He lived amidst an ocean of life. And obviously, his love for trees, his love for rivers, his love for the ocean, his love for the high mountains, the stars, the sun and moon, was immense. He lived in a totally different world ­ very related. He was one of the members of the cosmos, just as every living thing is. As far as sensitivity is concerned, he was far more human than the so-called civilized man, who has become hard, has become more mechanical, more robotlike; he has lost much of his sensitivity. You can watch, holding hands with different people. Some hands will feel almost as if you are holding the hand of a dead man, no energy, no warmth, no throbbing of life, no transfer of any loving, friendly energy ­ just closed, dead. And you will find hands which suck you. You find afterwards that you are feeling weaker. There are people with whom you don't want to be, because being with them you feel your energy sucked out, as if somebody has taken blood out of you. They are parasites of energy. They don't have any energy to give, but they are ready to take any energy possible. And you will find the opposite also: holding their hand you will feel healthier, fresher. Their hands will be flowing into your being, pouring some energy into you, some love, some warmth. Just the other day, Anando brought one very rich woman. She owns some newspapers and magazines, a very beautiful woman. She wants to write an article about me, so she wanted a photograph of me with her. I took her hand in my hand, and it was a sad shock to me. The woman was smiling, but her heart was sad. I could feel in her hand immense sadness.

If you are sensitive, you will be able to feel whether a person is blissful, sad, feeling unworthy, feeling a sinner, or is standing on his own feet, feeling the dignity of being human, feeling rooted, centered; feeling that he has a place in existence of his own, that he is not accidental, that existence needs him otherwise he would not be here. "The very fact that I am here shows clearly that existence needs me. There is some tremendous purpose, some destiny that existence wants to be fulfilled by me. I am existence's ambition, just as you are." The moment you feel this, you have a great gratitude arising in you. Out of that gratitude primitive man was bowing down to the trees, to the rivers, to the sun, to the moon. It was far more beautiful than going into a church and bowing down to a sad Jesus Christ. And obviously, he has to be sad, he is crucified. You don't expect him to laugh; that would have been absolutely inappropriate. I would have done it. But Jesus has a long face, utterly sad. You will find all God-oriented people serious and sad, because deep down there is doubt. God is not their experience, it is just a belief. And how can you make belief a truth? It will remain a belief. You can repress your doubt as much as possible in the unconscious, but it is there and very alive and kicking. It makes you sad because you are living a fictitious life, a life that is not your own, a life that others have imposed on you. And God is the most responsible for taking away your prestige, your dignity, your pride. The primitive man loved existence. To me, he was more religious than the civilized man. With private property the father came in. The father can protect you when you are a child, but when you become young, you get married, you have to live your own life. By that time perhaps your father will have died, or will have become sick and old. And you have lived from your very first breath under the protection of your father. He was the big man in your life, the first big man. When you are alone, you start feeling some vacuum in you which the father used to fill. Hence, God became the father, a father who is not going to die. Your father betrayed you, he left you alone, and you trusted him so much. And he did not care about you that you will be left alone. You have lived with that program from the very first breath. So when the father leaves you and you are on your own, suddenly you feel a vacuum. That vacuum can be filled by another father, but that father cannot be a human being, because a human being has already deceived you. You are feeling hurt, so you project a father which is eternal and immortal, and far away, and omnipotent ­ not like your father, whom you used to think in your childhood... You can see it ­ small children continuously fighting that "My dad is the greatest man in the world!" "Your dad is just a chicken!" Every child thinks his dad is all-powerful, he can do anything, because as he looks around him his dad is doing all kinds of things. He repairs the car, repairs the television, beats his mother... he knows he is powerful. But that powerful father... slowly slowly, as you grow in intelligence, you start seeing his frailties, his weaknesses. Suddenly there is a gap. Even if the father is alive and with you, you know he is not omnipotent. He is becoming older, soon he will die. You know he is not all-powerful. Before his boss he starts wagging his tail, his invisible tail.

There is a place in your backbone, just at the end, where some million years ago there used to be a tail connected. The place is still there. That was the greatest argument by Charles Darwin that if there was no tail connected to you, then why this space? This space would not have been here. The tail has dropped, leaving the hole, leaving the space where it used to be attached. Why do you start smiling as you see your boss? You don't smile at your servant; the servant has to smile, not you. You don't take any notice, you go on reading your newspaper; you know he is passing by, smiling, but you don't even look at him. Your boss is doing the same with you. You smile, and he goes on writing. Perhaps he is not writing anything, but just seeing you coming in, he starts getting engaged in the file, turning pages, looking very occupied and busy. I used to stay with one of the presidents of the ruling congress party, U.N. Dhebar. He was very much interested in me. He used to attend my camps, even though all his political friends tried to prevent him, telling him, "Don't go to this man." But he was not a politician, not cunning, a very simple and very authentic man. It was just by chance, accidentally, that he had become the president. It happens in most cases. He was chosen as the president because he was the most polite ­ a nice man who would never say no. And Pandit Jawaharlal needed a yes-man. He was the prime minister and he wanted the organization of congress to be ruled either by himself ­ which would look dictatorial ­ or by a yes-man. And U.N. Dhebar was such a simple man that he would say yes to whatever Jawaharlal wanted. So it was Jawaharlal who was dictating almost everything. I was staying once in his house in New Delhi, and he was talking to me and gossiping about all the political leaders, what kind of people we have got; all kinds of idiots he was telling me about. There was one Maulana Azad, a Mohammedan, who knew no English and knew no Hindustani. He was a scholar of Arabic and Persian, and he was the education minister of India. U.N. Dhebar was talking about this Maulana Azad. Once Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru had gone to a conference in London, a conference of the commonwealth nations. At that time India was part of the commonwealth, now it is no more. And Maulana Azad was the second man in the cabinet. He had been given that second place because he was a Mohammedan, to satisfy the Mohammedans of India. You will be surprised to know India is the biggest Mohammedan country. No other Mohammedan country has as many Mohammedans as India. Even after Pakistan has been separated and Bangladesh has been separated, still India has a greater population of Mohammedans than any other country in the world. To satisfy the Mohammedans a Mohammedan has to be number two in the cabinet. And when Jawaharlal went to London, Maulana Azad thought, "Perhaps now I am the acting prime minister, because I am the second man." Prime ministers are prime minsters wherever they are. There is no such thing as an acting prime minister. If the president, who is the head of the government, goes out of the country then the vice president becomes the acting president. But the prime minister is not the head of the government in

a constitution such as India or England has. The prime minister is not the head, so there is no need for any acting prime minister. But he thought otherwise, and U.N. Dhebar was saying to me, "We all told him that this is absolutely unconstitutional. There is no place in the constitution for any acting prime minister. There is only a place for an acting president." But he did not listen. He immediately phoned the chauffeur of Jawaharlal, "Bring his limousine to my house, while he is away I am the acting prime minister." And with the flag of the prime minister on the car, and two motorbikes ahead, and two motorbikes by the side, and two motorbikes behind, he went into the parliament, and everybody laughed. So U.N. Dhebar was telling me, "Such idiots there are! And Jawaharlal had to phone from London, `Don't do this stupid thing. It is absolutely unconstitutional. There is no such thing as an acting prime minister.'" And then suddenly came a phone call. U.N. Dhebar took the phone and said, "I am very busy and I cannot give you any appointment for at least seven days," and put the phone down. I said, "You are not busy, you are just gossiping with me." He said, "This is the trouble in politics. You have to pretend that you are very busy, that you don't have any time ­ and you have all the time. But you have to show the people that you are a very busy man, not approachable so easily. So I have told him after seven days he should phone again. If I have time, then I will see him. Although I am completely free... because you are here I have canceled all my programs. While you are here in my house, I don't want to waste my time with anybody else. I want to be with you. This is a rare chance, because in the camps I cannot have much time with you. This is a great opportunity. And I have told everybody ­ the guards ­ `Don't allow anybody...'" I said, "This is strange. That man may have some important work." He said, "Who cares? Nobody cares about anybody." Such a nice person, very cultured, educated, but who cares? The moment he said it to me, I said, "This is very insensitive. And you pray every day to God." He had a small temple in his house with the statue of Krishna. He was a devotee of Krishna. "Your prayer is meaningless. It is better to go outside and pray to a rose bush. At least the rose bush is alive! This Krishna that you are praying to is man-made, just a stone, cut into a statue. Can't you see the deadness of your Krishna? Look outside, the whole world is alive. Birds are singing, flowers are blossoming, the sun is setting. Soon the whole sky will be full of stars." The primitive man lived in the universe as an essential part of it, and he was grateful just to be alive. His gratitude was more authentic than the God-oriented religions' thankfulness to God. You are being thankful to a fiction. One of the English writers, a well-known linguist, Dr. Johnson, had a strange habit, almost neurotic. Whenever he went for a morning walk he had to touch every lamppost. If he forgot to touch some

lamppost, he would go back, touch it and then go ahead. Whoever was with him would say, "What are you doing?" He said, "What can I do? I feel such an urgency that it has to be done. I know it looks stupid, and I know there is something wrong with me, but what to do? If I leave one post, it creates so much upset, so many sentiments, emotions, feelings ­ `What are you doing? Just go back!' And I have to go back." A lamppost! I used to go for a morning walk, and an old retired professor of mathematics started... He was also always going for a morning walk, so he became friendly with me and started going with me. But he had the habit... In India you find temples everywhere. Just after a few houses, again a temple. If not a temple, then under the tree, a red stone representing the monkey god. And he would bow down. And I said, "This is torture to me. Either you leave me or leave your gods. What nonsense! Every place... and this whole city is full of temples of this god and that god, and you have to... And I have to stand with you, and I look embarrassed. What kind of companion have I got? So either you stop following me ­ you can go on your own way ­ or you have to stop this stupid habit. All those stones are dead. "If you want, then look at something living. And I don't see you ever looking at the trees, looking at the flowers, or looking at the last star that is disappearing." And it is such a quiet moment in the early morning: the sun has not risen yet, it is still dark and the last star is disappearing. At this moment, such a moment, Gautam Buddha became enlightened. The last star was disappearing, and as the last star disappeared, something in him also disappeared. Suddenly the sky was there, empty, and he looked inside. There was also utter emptiness: two skies ­ one outside, one inside ­ and a great silence. And for the first time he bowed down, not to anybody in particular, but to the whole existence. This is gratitude, this is authentic sensitivity. But with private property, the father became important. And when the father was seen in his true reality, was found lacking in omnipotence, in omniscience, in omnipresence, he was not a god; you had to create a god as a substitute for your father. So when Jesus falls down on the ground on his knees and calls, "Abba!" in the Aramaic language which Jesus spoke... He never spoke Hebrew; Hebrew was the language of the highly-cultured scholars, rich people, educated people. Aramaic was the language of the villagers, uneducated people; it is Hebrew but not sophisticated. Abba is father in Aramaic. But the way he used to fall on the ground and look at the sky and call "Abba!" shows that he had not grown beyond his childhood. It is childish. And remember the difference between childlike and childish. The awakened one becomes childLIKE, he is not childish. And the God-oriented person becomes childish. His behavior is just like a child who has lost his way in a fair and is searching for the father. "Abba!" he is crying. "Where is my father?" Without his father he is not safe, he is not secure. All these prayers show your fear, all these prayers show your disappointment in your father. You have created a fantasy, the fantasy is sick. A little biographical note before the sutras.

SEKITO'S ENLIGHTENMENT WAS REALIZED WHILE HE WAS READING THE Chaolun, A WORK WRITTEN BY SENGCHAO IN THE YEAR 400. SENGCHAO HAD COMPOSED THIS WORK WHILE IN PRISON AWAITING EXECUTION. THE PASSAGE WHICH INSPIRED SEKITO'S ENLIGHTENMENT WAS: "HE WHO MAKES HIMSELF TO BE ALL THINGS OF THE UNIVERSE, IS NOT HE THE REAL SAGE?" One who makes himself the whole of existence, is not he a real sage? Just this statement, and there suddenly transpired in him a great revolution. From ignorance he took a quantum leap towards enlightenment. This is just what I have been saying to you: religiousness without God simply means feeling yourself one with the whole universe. Just this statement: he must have been just on the brink, just on the borderline. And as he read this sentence, "HE WHO MAKES HIMSELF TO BE ALL THINGS OF THE UNIVERSE, IS NOT HE THE REAL SAGE?" ­ just reading this sutra, a metamorphosis. He became a totally new man. The old personality dropped and he was for the first time an individual, in tune with existence. And this man, Sengchao, was also a great master. But the greater a master is, the more the society goes against him. He was imprisoned just because he was talking against the old religion of Japan ­ which is not much of a religion. It is just as ordinary a religion as Hinduism, Mohammedanism, Christianity. It has no flavor of the genius and the giants. But whenever a genius and a giant appears, the little man in the masses becomes angry, feels inferior, becomes enraged. He has killed Socrates, and he has killed Jesus, and he has killed Mansoor. He also killed Sengchao. Because the whole crowd was against him, the emperor had to arrest him. He was causing great turmoil in the country by his statements. And his statements are so beautiful that a single sentence made Sekito enlightened. Sengchao's small book, CHAOLUN, consists of very condensed statements, because he wrote that book before he was sentenced to death. But what a man, not bothering about death, but writing his last testament, with no fear of death, no question of death! His book, you cannot imagine, was written just before he was going to be sentenced. It is a small book. You will not find the shadow of the cross on it. If you didn't know, you would never dream or imagine that this book was written just before he was going to be sentenced to death. This shows the caliber of the man; this shows the depth and the height of his enlightenment; this shows his grandeur, his splendor. A small statement in that book made Sekito enlightened. And inspired by CHAOLUN, Sekito wrote a book called SANDOKAI. It is as beautiful as CHAOLUN. Very rarely have such cases happened in the contemporary world. It was Friedrich Nietzsche's THUS SPAKE ZARATHUSTRA that inspired Kahlil Gibran to write THE PROPHET. He wrote THE PROPHET when he was only twenty-one, and in his whole life he must have written at least fifty books. In every book he was trying to go beyond THE PROPHET but could not because THE PROPHET was an inspired book. He was so overflowing with Friedrich Nietzsche's insights that they triggered him also into new spaces.

THE PROPHET is a great work, but all his other books... He wrote THE GARDEN OF THE PROPHET, a desire to go beyond THE PROPHET, but failed. At least fifty books he has written: thirty in English; twenty in Lebanese, his mother tongue. But in no other book could he even come close to THE PROPHET ­ these books he was writing. Perhaps THE PROPHET was written under the vast shadow of Friedrich Nietzsche's insights. It is not to be compared with THUS SPAKE ZARATHUSTRA, but it comes very close. The same thing happened with Sengchao's CHAOLUN, and Sekito's SANDOKAI. But the difference is that both were enlightened. So SANDOKAI reaches the same height as CHAOLUN. Neither was Friedrich Nietzsche enlightened, nor Kahlil Gibran, but Friedrich Nietzsche was a giant compared to Kahlil Gibran. Both were unenlightened, but Nietzsche reached the very boundary of the mind. Just one step more and he would have become enlightened. Kahlil Gibran could not reach even to the boundary, that's why he never became mad. Nietzsche's madness is a symbol that he was almost ready to become enlightened, but could not find the door. He had no idea that there is something beyond the mind. And he was rushing against the wall, forcing his way beyond the mind. But you cannot force your way. There is a door, you have to know the door; meditation is the name of the door. Otherwise you will hurt yourself by rushing against the wall. That's how he became mad. Kahlil Gibran never became mad. He never reached even to the boundary of the mind. The question of no-mind does not arise. But just the shadow of Nietzsche's giant intellect triggered in him a tremendous inspiration, and he created THE PROPHET. These two books, CHAOLUN and SANDOKAI stand on the same ground, on the same height. You are going into SANDOKAI, these sutras are from SANDOKAI. Each statement is magical. The sutras: OUR BELOVED MASTER, THE MIND OF THE GREAT SAGE OF INDIA WAS INTIMATELY COMMUNICATED FROM INDIA TO CHINA. It was intimately communicated because a man of the same height as Gautam Buddha, Bodhidharma, went to China, full of the light, full of the joy, full of the ecstasy. His spring had come. He went to China as the awakened one. That's why the word `intimate' is used. It was not transferred, because before Bodhidharma reached China thousands of Buddhist scholars had reached China. Hundreds of Buddhist scriptures were translated into Chinese. Almost the whole of China had already become Buddhist before Bodhidharma reached it. But none of those were awakened ones. They were great scholars who had gone and translated... And the scriptures were beautiful. China had nothing compared to it. It had only one book written by Lao Tzu on Tao, but that too does not come to the height of Gautam Buddha's sutras, because it was a written book, and written under force, compulsion.

He had never written in his whole life, and he never spoke. People used to sit by his side in silence, and if something happened in the silence, good. If nothing happened, "What can I do?" That was his answer. A few people became enlightened, but very few. One Chuang Tzu, one Lieh Tzu ­ just two persons became enlightened sitting silently by the side of Lao Tzu. To understand silence is not easy, you have to reach to that same depth. Otherwise you may be sitting by the side of Lao Tzu, but your mind will be going in circles, a continuous rush of thoughts. You may be silent from the outside, but inside there is too much talk going on. When for the first time talking movies came into existence... before that there were silent movies. The first name that was given to the talking movies was "talky." And in India the movie house is still called the talkies. In your mind that "talky" is continuously going on. Whether you want it or not, that does not matter. In spite of you, it is continuously there. So although thousands of Buddhist scholars had reached China and the whole country had been converted to Buddhism, the emperor of China had been converted to Buddhism, nobody had given the taste; it was not an intimate phenomenon. It became intimate only when Bodhidharma reached China. Now a buddha himself has reached China, a different body but the same consciousness, a different body but the same height and the same depth. It is perfectly good of Sekito to call it an intimate communication from India to China. IN HUMAN BEINGS THERE ARE WISE MEN AND FOOLS, BUT ON THE WAY THERE IS NO NORTHERN OR SOUTHERN TEACHER. Neither teachers from India nor teachers from China are of any help on the way. You need a master, you need an intimate communion with the master, not a teaching. You don't need a teacher in the real religious world, you need a master. You need a buddha who has already arrived, and who can provoke you, challenge you to come. A buddha is nothing but a clarion call to everybody: Whoever wants to know can come close. The master has arrived, the teacher has only heard, he has no individual intimate experience of the truth. So in the ordinary world there are wise people and there are "otherwise" people, but on the path neither the wise are of any help, nor the otherwise. On the path you need someone who has gone beyond mind, beyond wisdom, beyond foolishness, who has gone beyond intellect and beyond retardedness, who has simply moved into the silence of the beyond. You need someone who has found the truth. Just in his finding the truth, he has become a radiation. Around him there is a field of energy which can penetrate you, which can wake you up. THE MYSTERIOUS SOURCE IS CLEAR AND BRIGHT, THE BRANCHING STREAMS FLOW THROUGH THE DARKNESS. As far as the master is concerned, THE MYSTERIOUS SOURCE IS CLEAR AND BRIGHT, THE BRANCHING STREAMS FLOW THROUGH THE DARKNESS. But the moment the master speaks,

his words start moving towards darkness. By the time they reach to you, they are streams flowing in darkness, branches moving towards darkness. You have to come into deep intimacy with the master, so you can share his brightness, his clearness, his clarity, his transparency. If you only hear his words and note down those words, you are already going wrong. The master does not consist of words. He may use words to call you closer. The master consists only of absolute silence, pure silence. TO BE ATTACHED TO THE RELATIVE, THIS IS ILLUSION... The whole world is relative. Albert Einstein was not the only one to bring the word `relativity' into the world. Long before him mystics in different lands had found that everything outside is relative. That has created a problem for the philosophers, but not for the mystics. Philosophers have heard the mystics say that everything outside is relative, and whatever is relative is illusory. Why is it illusory? It is a little bit subtle, but you have to understand it. You think yourself homely when you see a beautiful woman; you see a tall man and you feel small. But your smallness is relative. Until the tall man came, you were perfectly okay, there was no problem. You were not worried about your smallness. In India there is a saying that the camels never like to go to the mountains. They love deserts where they are the mountains. They live in the desert, they don't like mountains at all, because a mountain makes them feel very inferior. It is very psychological. Why do you feel that you are small, unworthy, that you don't deserve any respect, that you are a sinner? These are all relative things; that you are beautiful, that you are very educated... these are all relative. Anything relative is illusory, illusory in the sense that if you don't compare, you are yourself, somebody else is himself. What does it matter if he is tall? What does it matter if you are small? Both of your feet reach to the earth just as the tall man's feet reach to the earth. It is not that you are small and dangling in the air. What is the problem? Comparison creates relative illusions. Trees are not worried. The rose bush is small, and the cedar goes two hundred feet high. Neither is the rose bush worried why the cedar is so tall, nor is the cedar worried why the rose bush has such beautiful flowers. A rose bush is a rose bush, a cedar is a cedar. One Zen master was asked, "Why are we miserable?" He said, "Look at the cypress tree in the courtyard." The questioner looked at the courtyard and the cypress tree. He said, "But I don't understand." The master said, "Look again. By the side of the cypress there is a rose bush. I have never heard the rose bush complaining, `Why am I small?' And I have never heard the cypress tree complain, `Why do no roses blossom? And I have gone so far up in search of the roses ­ two hundred feet ­ and no roses? What kind of justice is this?' "No, there is no quarrel. I go every day in the morning ­ sometimes at dusk, sometimes in the night ­ just to see whether they are quarreling or having a dialogue and discussion. There is absolute

silence, both are satisfied as they are, because no comparison is arising, no relative idea of inferiority or superiority is arising." The relative is called illusory because it is your creation, it does not exist anywhere. Otherwise you would go mad. You are passing by the side of beautiful trees, and you could start thinking, "Why am I not green?" You don't do it, because you are not that neurotic yet. Because you don't compare, there is no problem. But you pass by a woman who is beautiful, and if you are a woman, immediately the comparison, anger, jealousy. But what is the problem? She has just a little longer nose. And what will you do with a long nose? In the dark every woman is the same. Just put the light off! That is why people make love... First they put the light off, then every woman is a Sophia Loren. What is the difference? The same skeleton, the same bones, the same blood, the same mucus, the same deodorant, the same perspiration, the same huffing and puffing. Darkness has a great quality. It makes everybody equal. Who cares? In darkness you can make love to the ugliest woman, thinking she is Cleopatra. I have heard about a drunkard who was brought to the court because he was making love on the beach to a dead woman. The drunkard stumbled into the court, and the judge asked, "Can't you tell the difference between dead and alive?" The drunkard said, "I can." "Then why were you making love to that dead woman on the beach?" He said, "I thought she was English. I never thought she was dead." Ladies behave as dead. That is the difference between a lady and a woman. A real woman will groan and moan and beat you. She will go crazy and scream and wake up the whole neighborhood ­ that is a real woman. The lady is just a good lay, silent, just like a Japanese doll. You lay the doll down, she closes her eyes; you put the doll back, she opens her eyes. A good lady is just a doll, cultured, sophisticated, snobbish. So the poor drunkard was not wrong. I am a hundred percent in favor of the poor drunkard. I don't want ladies in the world at all. The world needs real men, real women. And who cares about the neighborhood? They can celebrate if they want. Whenever you compare, the very comparison brings you into an illusory space. ... BUT TO TAKE TO ONESELF THE ABSOLUTE IS NOT ENLIGHTENMENT. That's what philosophers have been moving into. They think the world is illusory, so God is the absolute, non-relative, beyond relativeness. The world is relative, changing moment-to-moment, nothing is permanent, nothing is stable, it is flux. God is absolute. The absolute is another name

for God. He never changes, he is the same, always the same, from eternity to eternity. This is the philosopher's idea: because of an illusory world he creates the extreme opposite of an absolute God. One of my professors, S.S. Roy, who is now a retired professor, an old man, loved me very much. It was because of him that I entered the university where he was a professor. He was continuously persuading me... I was in another university, but I used to go for debates, discussions, eloquence competitions to the university where S.S. Roy was a professor. And the very first time, at first sight, he fell in love with me. He was a judge ­ there were three judges ­ and he gave me ninety-nine out of a hundred marks, and I came first. I won the shield and as I was leaving with the shield, he came by my side and he said, "Wait. I have to apologize to you." I said, "For what?" He said, "I wanted to give you a hundred percent, but feeling that people would think I was being favorable to you, I cut one number. I gave you ninety-nine percent. Please forgive me. I wanted to give you... but I could not be that strong. I knew that other professors would say that I was being too favorable." I said, "There is no harm. I won the shield anyway, and others have also given good marks. Somebody has given eighty percent, somebody else has given eighty-five percent. So there is no problem. The people are far below ­ the other competitors ­ so your not giving me one mark makes no difference." He said, "It does not make any difference to you, but it makes a difference to me because I went against myself. I wanted to give you a hundred percent." I said, "Next time. I will be coming again and again," because I was going to all the universities, to all the colleges, wherever there was any competition for eloquence or for debate. And it was only one time that I got the second prize. Otherwise I had hundreds of prizes, always first. The day I got the second prize, the whole audience of the university could not believe it. And I had to stand up. I told the vice chancellor, who was presiding, "I know why I have got the second prize, and you must be puzzling yourself also." A girl had got the first prize. So I said, "I have to be absolutely clear about the matter, because I know what happened. "One of the professors, who is the judge, is in love with the girl, and he has given too many marks to her. The other two judges had no idea. They have both given me the highest marks, but that man has given her so much that she has come just one mark ahead." And I said, "You have to ask the professor because I know they have both been walking in the park together at night. "The park is in front of my house, so I know perfectly well. And I can produce witnesses, because all the gardeners in the park know that these two people come late at night when the park is closed. They bribe the gardeners and enter the park, because that is the safest place in the night." The girl and the professor both started perspiring. I said, "Look at their perspiration! Nobody in this whole hall" ­ there were at least a thousand people ­ "is perspiring. Only these two people. Why are they perspiring?" I said, "Stand up!" I said it so loudly that even the professor stood up.

And the vice-chancellor said, "You are creating such trouble, but I can understand." I said, "You have to cancel this whole debate; it has to be done again, and this man has not to be a judge." He felt so ashamed that he resigned from the college that very night and escaped from the town. After twenty years I came across him in a train. I said, "Hello." He said, "My God! I wanted never to see you again." I said, "Life is mysterious. Where is the girl?" He said, "You have not forgotten yet?" I said, "I have neither forgotten, nor have I forgiven. Where is the girl?" He said, "That girl, because of you, deserted me! She became so ashamed that she stopped meeting me." I said, "That's great! Now I forgive you and I will forget you. I wanted to finish that relationship because you were doing an injustice to me. You thought I would remain silent." And from that day every judge was aware not to do anything, because, "This man seems to be strange." Everybody felt that it was an absolute injustice. The girl was not even worth being fourth! And S.S. Roy became interested in me, because I had spoken up. He loved it, and he said, "I will arrange every facility for you, a scholarship, whatever you want I will arrange; you just change university. I want you to be my student." He was a professor of philosophy. So I changed university, and he was a very well-known scholar, particularly on Shankara, whose whole philosophy is that the world is illusion and God is the absolute truth, and on Bradley, an English philosopher, whose philosophy is the same: the world is illusory and God is the absolute truth. He had his doctoral thesis on Shankara and Bradley. And the very first day I entered his class... He had invited me, but he had not been aware that he was inviting trouble. He was talking about illusion and the absolute, the world and God, and I told him, "If God is unchanging, he must be dead. Any living thing cannot be unchanging. You show me any living thing in the whole world ­ every living thing is moving, growing, going. It is a constant flux. Life is a flux. If God is alive, it is not possible that he can remain stable, the same forever. Then how will you differentiate between a dead god and a living god? "Just tell me. Both are sitting in front of you, the living god, the dead god. Neither the dead god changes nor the living god changes. How will you find who is the living God?" He said, "My God! I have got a doctoral degree on my thesis, but I never thought about this." I said, "The very word `absolute' is a reaction. First you call the world illusory, which it is not. You know perfectly well, you don't enter into just anybody's house. If it is illusory, what does it matter?

Why do you go on entering your own house every day? What does it matter? You can enter somebody else's house." He said, "Your philosophical discussion is dangerous. I have discussed problems, but you are telling me to enter somebody else's house?" I said, "Yes, because if it is illusory, all dream, what does it matter whether it is your wife or somebody else's wife? Whether they are your children or somebody else's children, all is illusory. And your God is only a philosophical concept: because the world is changing, God has to be unchanging. But it is only logic. If there is a God he has to be changing, otherwise he will be dead." And I told him that day, the first day of my encountering his class, "God is certainly dead, that's why he is not changing." But this absolute idea of God is only a philosophical concept, that's why Sekito says: "TO BE ATTACHED TO THE RELATIVE, THIS IS ILLUSION..." He is not saying that the world is illusion: to be attached to this world is illusion. Remain unattached, the world is perfectly real. Attachment is illusion, not the world; not the woman but the attachment, not the money but the attachment, not the body but the attachment. Sekito is making a tremendously significant statement. No philosopher has said that. They say the world is illusory. He is making a distinction: not the world, but the attachment to the world, to the relative, is illusory. And because of this, philosophers have moved to the other extreme: God is not illusory, he is the most real, the absolutely real. And Sekito immediately counters these philosophers. He says, "... BUT TO TAKE TO ONESELF THE ABSOLUTE IS NOT ENLIGHTENMENT." Don't think in terms of absolute. There is nothing absolute, everything is always becoming absolute, but it is becoming and becoming and becoming, and it never comes to a full stop, because a full stop will be dead. The day existence comes to perfection, there is nowhere to go, a full stop. Perfection is death. To be absolute is to be dead. Sekito is saying something which only a mystic, only a buddha can say, "Even the experience of buddhahood goes on growing. There are no limits to its growth. It is not that once you have become a buddha you have come to the full point. No, the path is endless, the journey is infinite, the pilgrimage goes on and on and on. And that is the beauty of existence, that nothing comes to an end. Everything goes on moving eternally." So the concept of the absolute is the concept of the philosophers, not of those who are enlightened. EACH AND ALL THE ELEMENTS OF THE SUBJECTIVE AND OBJECTIVE SPHERES ARE RELATED, AND AT THE SAME TIME INDEPENDENT... He is saying, the outer world and the inner world are both independent but related, because their functions are different. They are related because they cannot exist separately. The outer cannot exist

without the inner, the inner cannot exist without the outer, so they are related. But their functions are different: the outer is moving towards the objects, and the inner is moving towards subjectivity. Their directions are different, their realizations are different, but they are related at a point. He is making immensely significant statements which will be clear to you only when you stand at your very center ­ absolutely clear, no dust in your eyes ­ and you see the objective world has a beauty of its own, a reality of its own, a life of its own, a hidden consciousness of its own, just as the inner has its own stars, its own sky, its own expanse, its own universe. Outside you there is an infinite universe, inside you also there is an infinite universe. Both are related, both are dependent on each other, but their functions are different. If you move on the outer line, you will find yourself becoming more and more scientific. If you move on the inner line, you will find yourself becoming more and more a mystic. RELATED YET WORKING DIFFERENTLY, THOUGH EACH KEEPS ITS OWN PLACE. FORM MAKES THE CHARACTER AND APPEARANCE DIFFERENT; SOUND, TASTE, SMELL, DISTINGUISH COMFORT AND DISCOMFORT. THE DARK MAKES ALL THINGS ONE; THE BRIGHTNESS MAKES ALL THINGS DIFFERENT. But it is only appearance. In darkness you cannot see, hence everything seems to be one. In light you can see, hence everything seems to be separate. But these separate things in their deepest roots are joined. We are all joined to one center of the universe. As branches, as leaves, we are separate, but as we go deeper into the roots, all the branches, all the leaves, all the flowers are getting the nourishment from the same roots. Existence nourishes you and the trees and the mountains and the birds equally. So it is a mystery that one existence manifests in so many ways. This variety of expression makes life beautiful. This variety makes life unboring. The variety is a richness, but this oneness makes life equal. Nobody is inferior, nobody is superior, hence there is no need of any comparison. THE FOUR ELEMENTS RETURN TO THEIR NATURE, AS A CHILD TO ITS MOTHER. That's what I have been telling you. When the source of life also becomes the goal of life, the circle is complete. And whenever the circle is complete, you don't have to move unnecessarily into birth and death, and again birth, and again death. You have been moving into this wheel of birth and death for millions of years. It is time to jump out of the circle. This very jumping out of the circle is enlightenment. FIRE IS HOT, WIND MOVES, WATER IS WET, EARTH HARD. EYES SEE, EARS HEAR; THE NOSE SMELLS, THE TONGUE TASTES, ONE SALT, ANOTHER SOUR. EACH IS INDEPENDENT OF THE OTHER, BUT THE DIFFERENT LEAVES COME FROM THE SAME ROOT. You taste from your tongue, you see from your eyes, you touch from your hand. All your senses are different: you cannot see by your hand, and you cannot taste by your eyes, and you cannot smell by your ears. They are all separate, but they are all joined in one brain from where they come like separate branches. They all feed the same brain, and the same brain nourishes them.

Whatever hands bring from touch reaches to the same brain. Whatever noses bring from fragrances reaches to the same brain. Eyes bring their survey of the world to the same brain. These senses are just branches spreading in different directions, to collect different experiences, and to make the brain richer. But they are all rooted in one brain. He is just giving an example. We are all separate, independent, but we are rooted in the same existence. We should be independent, we should be individuals, but we should not forget that finally we are one, waves of the same ocean. Basho wrote: WHAT HAPPINESS, CROSSING THIS SUMMER RIVER, SANDALS IN HAND! A man who is enlightened, everything to him becomes a mystery. Now such a small thing! You will say, "What is there?" WHAT HAPPINESS, CROSSING THIS SUMMER RIVER, SANDALS IN HAND! You will say, "There is nothing in it. Sandals in hand? The summer river must have become very shallow. What is there to be happy about?" But that is the very point of Zen, you don't have any reason to be happy; even this, crossing the summer river, sandals in hand, what happiness! Any act or no act, doing or no doing, becomes utterly blissful. It does not have to be caused by something. When your happiness is caused, you become attached to the cause, because you are afraid that if you lose the cause your happiness will disappear. If you are happy with a woman or with a man, you become attached; not only attached, you start creating prisons for each other, because without this woman, without this man, you cannot be happy. So your happiness turns into misery for both. Meditation brings you a great experience that happiness need not be caused, and when you have found a happiness which is not caused by anything, you are simply happy ­ just to be is to be happy ­ then you don't create any prisons for anybody. Then you don't possess anybody, and you don't destroy anybody's dignity as a human being. You don't enslave people. You love, you share, just because of your abundance, not that you want anything in return. Without your asking, much comes to you. The moment you start asking, you have lost the very ground of being happy.

Hence, I have been contradicting Jesus' statement. He says, "Seek and ye shall find," and I say unto you, "DON'T seek and ye shall find." Jesus says, "Ask, and ye shall be answered," and I say unto you, "Don't ask, and you are the answer." Jesus says, "Knock, and the doors shall be opened unto you." I say to you, "There is no need to knock, the doors are already open. They have always been open, just open your eyes!" Question 4 Maneesha's question: OUR BELOVED MASTER, FRIEDRICH NIETZSCHE CONDEMNS MAN FOR HIS LACK OF CREATIVITY IN NOT BEING ABLE TO PRODUCE A BETTER CONCEPT OF GOD THAN THE CHRISTIAN ONE ­ WHICH HE REGARDS AS THE SICKEST, THE MOST DECREPIT, WHICH HE CALLS "THIS PITIABLE GOD OF CHRISTIAN MONOTONO-THEISM." DO YOU AGREE THAT THE CHRISTIAN VERSION OF GOD IS THE MOST UGLY? Maneesha, all concepts of God are fiction, so there is no question of any God being ugly or beautiful. God does not exist. Nietzsche has forgotten that God is dead. That's what happens to people who are not enlightened. He has been writing, "God is dead," and suddenly starts saying that man is not very creative because he has not been able to produce a better concept of God. That would be a better fiction only, a better lie. But he has forgotten completely that he has declared that God is dead. And even if it were a better fiction it would still have been dead. Fiction is fiction, a lie is a lie; however polished, however refined, you cannot make it true. So Christian god, or Hindu god, or Mohammedan god, it does not matter. God is a fiction, and the fiction is out of sickness of mind. He was a Christian and had no idea of Eastern gods, he only had the idea of the Jewish god and the Christian god. If he had known the Hindu gods, he would not have written this sentence. The Christian god is not the only ugly god; all gods are ugly in different ways. But in the first place they are lies, so there is no need to refine. Man certainly is not creative, but that does not mean that he should create a better god. A better god will be a better prison. A better god will be a far stronger chain. A better god will destroy you more efficiently than the ordinary gods are doing. Do you want a better god, a better prison, a better poison? Nietzsche has completely forgotten that lies are lies. There are no good lies and there are no bad lies. Lies are simply lies, you cannot make the distinction. Truth is truth. There is no better truth, you cannot refine it. Lies are lies. You can refine them, but still they will be lies, they cannot become truth. So I cannot agree, Maneesha, with Nietzsche; he has forgotten. That is the trouble with philosophers. He is a great philosopher, but he is not beyond the mind. He cannot have the clarity of the enlightened person.

Man is certainly not creative, but his creativity should not be concerned with God. His creativity should be concerned with making a better world, a better society, better literature, better poetry, better paintings, better sculpture, better human beings. A better god is not needed, a better god will be more dangerous. I hate the very word `God'. And I would hate it more if somebody refined the concept of God, because lies have to be destroyed! And you cannot destroy them unless you hate them. All your love for God has to be completely demolished. Now is the right time for Sardar Gurudayal Singh. He is a great iconoclast. He destroys things so creatively. Dilly Dump is the manager of the Last Resort Old People's Home. One morning, he is going from house to house collecting donations throughout the nice, mediocre American suburb called Yuppy Acres. Dilly walks up to the Poke household and rings the doorbell. When Porky Poke answers the door, Dilly says, "Good morning, sir. Would you like to make a contribution to the Last Resort Old People's Home?" "Okay," replies Porky. Then he turns around and calls back to the house, "Hey, Grandma! Get your hat and coat on!" The famous psychiatrist, Doctor Mindbender, is sitting in his chair and looking intently at his patient, Moishe Finklestein. Doctor Mindbender closes his notebook, smiles and says, "Yes, Mr. Finklestein, I am pleased to pronounce you a hundred percent cured!" "Rats!" sighs Moishe, looking depressed. "What happened?" "I don't understand," replies the shrink. "Are you not happy? I have cured you!" "Happy?" asks Moishe. "Why should I be happy? Last week I was Jesus Christ. And now I am nobody!" It is nine o'clock in the morning, in the Glorious Endings funeral parlor on the little Greek island of Crete. Pappa Acidophilus, the undertaker, hears the phone ring and picks it up. "This is Bishop Kretin," says the voice at the other end. "There has been an accident at the Holy Orthodox Church of Our Blessed Bleeding Virgin. I am sending over the church janitors, Rastus and Leroy, with the dead body immediately!" "Right!" says Pappa Acidophilus. "I will get the formaldehyde ready!" He puts down the phone and dashes off into his embalming room, rubbing his hands with glee. Three hours later, Rastus and Leroy come in carrying Old Mrs. Suflaki, who is as dead as a dodo. "Jesus Christ!" shouts Pappa Acidophilus, looking at his watch and shaking his fist. "Bishop Kretin called me three hours ago. What took you guys so long?"

"Sorry, boss," drawls Leroy, "but we had to wait until the good bishop had finished preaching to find out which one of the old ladies was dead!" Nivedano... (Drumbeat) (Gibberish) Nivedano... (Drumbeat) Be silent... Close your eyes, and feel your body to be completely frozen. This is the right moment to go inwards. Gather your energies, your total consciousness, and rush towards your center with a great urgency, as if this is going to be your last moment. Only with such urgency can one reach to the center immediately! Faster and faster... Deeper and deeper... As you come closer to the center, a great silence descends over you, just like soft rain, very tangible, very cool. A little closer, and you find a tremendous peacefulness surrounding your inner space. Flowers of the beyond start raining on you. One step more and you are at the center. For the first time you see your original face. For the first time you encounter your eternity. The East calls this original face the face of the buddha, the awakened one. It has nothing to do with Gautam Buddha personally, it is everybody's original face: peaceful, graceful, with a grandeur, with tremendous clarity, transparency, majesty. Your splendor is great, your treasure is great. Just one quality of the buddha has to be remembered. He consists only of one quality: witnessing. This small word `witnessing' contains the whole of spirituality. Witness that you are not the body. Witness that you are not the mind. Witness that you are only a witness.

As the witnessing deepens, you start becoming drunk with the divine. This is what is called ecstasy. To make the witnessing deeper, Nivedano... (Drumbeat) Relax... Let go of the body and the mind. Just remember only one thing: you are a buddha, a witness, a pure eternal awareness. And by and by you will start feeling a certain melting; separations disappear, Gautama the Buddha Auditorium becomes an ocean. Ten thousand buddhas disappear into the ocean. This oceanic consciousness is the very essence of Zen, the very essence of authentic religiousness. Gather as much as you can of all the ecstasy, of all the divine drunkenness, all the flowers that are showering on you, the grace, the beauty, the truth, the godliness. You have to bring them with you, and you have to express them in their utter beautifulness in your day-to-day activity. Chopping the wood, you are a buddha. Be graceful with the tree, it is also a potential buddha. Carrying water from the well, be a buddha. Every act has to turn into grace, into gratitude. Only then will the buddha be coming closer and closer to you. Before Nivedano calls you, persuade the buddha to come behind you as a great presence. Persuade him to remain with you twenty-four hours a day. His presence is going to become the alchemy of your transformation. These are the three steps: on the first step buddha comes behind you, you feel his warmth, his love, his compassion, his beautitude; on the second step, you become the shadow, buddha comes in front of you; in the third step, your shadow disappears into the buddha, you are no more, only buddha is. You are no more, only existence is. God is dead, and Zen is the only living truth. Nivedano... (Drumbeat) Come back, but come back as a buddha. Even your movements should be graceful and beautiful, blissful, radiating your consciousness and awareness.

Sit for a few moments to remind yourself of the golden path that you have traveled, and the inner space that you have touched, tasted, the fragrance of the beyond that is still surrounding you, and the presence of the buddha who is just behind you, almost touching you. Let buddha become your very reality, and you dissolve yourself, you disappear completely. You are the disease; the buddha is the cure. You are birth and death; buddha is transcendence from the circle of birth and death. You are momentary, just a soap bubble; buddha is your eternity. Okay, Maneesha? Yes, Beloved Master.

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