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Dhammapada-Buddhism-Buddha

THE DHAMMAPADA: THE WAY OF THE BUDDHA, VOL. 6

Chapter 1: The security of insecurity

 

Energy Enhancement         Enlightened Texts         Dhammapada         The Way of the Buddha, Vol. 6

 

HE IS AWAKE.
THE VICTORY IS HIS.
HE HAS CONQUERED THE WORLD.

HOW CAN HE LOSE THE WAY
WHO IS BEYOND THE WAY?
HIS EYE IS OPEN.
HIS FOOT IS FREE.
WHO CAN FOLLOW AFTER HIM?

THE WORLD CANNOT RECLAIM HIM
OR LEAD HIM ASTRAY,
NOR CAN THE POISONED NET OF DESIRE HOLD HIM.

HE IS AWAKE!
THE GODS WATCH OVER HIM.

HE IS AWAKE
AND FINDS JOY IN THE STILLNESS OF MEDITATION
AND IN THE SWEETNESS OF SURRENDER.

HARD IT IS TO BE BORN,
HARD IT IS TO LIVE,
HARDER STILL TO HEAR OF THE WAY,
AND HARD TO RISE, FOLLOW, AND AWAKE.

YET THE TEACHING IS SIMPLE.
DO WHAT IS RIGHT.
BE PURE.
AT THE END OF THE WAY IS FREEDOM.
TILL THEN, PATIENCE.

IF YOU WOUND OR GRIEVE ANOTHER,
YOU HAVE NOT LEARNED DETACHMENT.

OFFEND IN NEITHER WORD NOR DEED.
EAT WITH MODERATION.
LIVE IN YOUR HEART.
SEEK THE HIGHEST CONSCIOUSNESS.

Gautama the Buddha is talking today about the very essence of buddhahood: the height of buddhahood and the depth of it, the glory and the grace, the tremendous freedom that it brings, the light that it showers, the love, the joy, the bliss, the awakening.

These sutras are rare -- rarest amongst the most rare sutras, because Buddha is opening his own heart to you. He is inviting you to become a guest into his innermost core. He is revealing, in simple words, the fragrance that has happened to him and that is possible for you too -- because each man is born to be a buddha.
Unless one becomes a buddha one has not lived and one has not known what life is. One has dreamed of course -- dreams of a thousand and one things -- but one has been asleep. And whether you dream beautiful dreams or ugly dreams it does not matter. In the morning of buddhahood, all those dreams, both good and bad, sweet and bitter, golden dreams and nightmares, will be known as false, illusory. It was a self-deception, and the capacity to deceive oneself is enormous. Beware of it! One can even dream that one is awake, one can even dream that one has become a buddha. That is the ultimate trick the mind can play upon you.

It happened in Baghdad:
A man was brought to the caliph, because the man had declared that he was the new messenger of God. The caliph was irritated, annoyed, and he said, "You must be mad, because Mohammed is the last messenger of God and there is not going to be anybody else. The message has arrived in the Koran. Yes, before Mohammed there had been other messages, but all those messages were fragmentary because man was not ready and ripe. Mohammed has brought the full message; now there is not going to be any other messenger in the world. You bring yourself to your senses; otherwise you will have to suffer for it!"
The man was thrown into the prison for seven days, tortured, beaten, starved. After seven days the caliph arrived. The man was bound to a pillar, bruised, wounded. The caliph said, "Now you must have come to your senses. What do you say now?"
The man laughed and he said, "All the torture and all the suffering that have been imposed upon me simply prove that I am really the messenger, because when God was sending me to the world he warned me that 'My messengers have always been tortured.' And I was doubting, 'Why are people not torturing me if I am the real messenger?' You have proved it! God was right, there was no need to doubt."
The caliph was at a loss -- what to say to this madman? But suddenly another man who was also bound to another pillar started laughing hysterically. The caliph asked him, "Why are you laughing?"
The man said, "This guy is a cheat -- because I am God myself, and I have never sent this man to the world as my messenger!"
That man had been imprisoned one month before, declaring himself God.

Mohammedans are very fanatic; they can't allow -- sometimes even when it is the truth. When al-Hillaj Mansoor declared, "ANA'L HAQ! -- I am God himself!" it was a truth, he was not dreaming. But he was crucified. When Sarmad, another Sufi mystic, declared, "I am God!" his head was cut off. And these people were not dreaming. But it is very difficult from the outside to decide who is dreaming, who has gone mad, who is imagining, and who is declaring the truth. Because sometimes the dreamer believes in his dream, believes absolutely, so belief cannot prove anything. It may be just an ego trip.
The last deception that the mind can play on you is to say to you, "Why are you unnecessarily bothering? You are a buddha!" And I want you to be aware of it, because this is going to happen to many people. People can believe anything.
Just the other day a man wrote a letter to me saying, "I want to become a sannyasin, but I am a little afraid because I know that I am a Judas and I will prove to be a Judas to you." People can believe they are Christ, they can believe they are Judas. And he must be believing it really deeply.
I have sent him a message that "You can become a sannyasin. I already have many other Judases, so what difference does it make? One more is welcome!" Jesus had only one Judas: I have many, and it is better to have many -- one can prove more dangerous. If you have many Judases, first they will have to compete with each other. Their energies will be wasted amongst themselves. They will fight with each other; they will betray each other first. And Judas could betray Jesus because Jesus had only twelve disciples; I have one hundred thousand disciples.
I cannot take too much care as to who is a Judas and who is not; and I need not, because whatsoever happens is God's will. If a Judas is needed then he will have to come, that is the way God wants it to be. But your mind can play tricks with you. You can't just be a nobody -- if you cannot be Christ, at least you can be Judas. You can't accept the fact of anonymity.
And that is the very fundamental -- the first basic requirement, to enter into the world of religion: to accept oneself as anonymous, as if you have no name, no form, no identity. Then the mind cannot deceive you. Then the mind cannot seduce you into some idea, into some imagination.
Buddha is talking about what happens when a person becomes awakened. Ordinarily man is asleep, all men are asleep. Irrespective of their religion, nation, race, on one thing they all agree: they are all fast asleep -- dreaming different dreams, but the sleep is the same. The difference of dreams makes no difference to the quality of the sleep. One is dreaming Christian dreams, another is dreaming Jewish dreams, another is dreaming Hindu dreams, and so on and so forth, but dreams can't change your consciousness. In fact they are hindrances.
The sleep has to be broken, the sleep has to be shattered; otherwise you don't know who you are, you don't know what you are doing. You don't know where you are coming from, you don't know where you are going. You don't know what you are saying and what you are doing, to yourself and to others. You are accidental. You are like driftwood at the mercy of the blind winds -- there is no destiny. The winds throw you on this shore or on that shore, but you are not the master of your own being. You are a slave, a slave of blind forces.
The first thing to be done is to come out of your sleep.
Buddha says... the first sutra:

HE IS AWAKE.

He is defining buddhahood, or you can call it christhood; it is the same. Buddha and Christ are synonymous.
HE IS AWAKE. That is the most essential quality: he is no longer asleep, he is no longer dreaming. He has no thoughts, no memories, no imagination. He is utterly silent and alert. His silence is not a dead, cold silence; his silence is wakeful, warm, alive.
HE IS AWAKE: you are not -- you are so full of junk. Unless you become empty of the junk you will not be awake. And you go on doing the same things again and again, you go on repeating. You move in circles, never seeing the fact that you are functioning like a robot, like a machine.

The legend goes that in the days of ancient Rome an officer called away to the wars locked his beautiful young wife in a chastity belt and gave the key to his best friend with the admonition, "If I don't return in a year, use this key. To you, my dear friend, I entrust it."
He then galloped off to the wars. Ten miles away from home he heard the clatter of hoofbeats behind him and he waited. His friend on horseback galloped up saying, "You gave me the wrong key!"
Man is so deeply unconscious!

A couple of drunks in a bar started talking about sex. "Say," said the first one, "have you ever gotten so drunk you kissed a broad's navel?"
"Drunker!" answered his pal.

Just watch your life and you will be absolutely in agreement with him: "Drunker!" What have you been doing? Can you say you have lived your life with awareness? Can you say your actions have the quality of awareness? Somebody insults you: do you respond or do you react? If you react, you are asleep; if you respond, you are awake.
And what is the difference between reaction and response? -- the difference is great.

Once Buddha was being insulted very much by a few people. They were shouting at him, saying all kinds of dirty words to him, and he was standing there listening to them as totally as possible.
After a few minutes they felt frustrated, because he was not saying anything, and one of them asked, "Are you deaf or something? Why don't you answer?"
Buddha said, "I am answering, but my answer is a response, not a reaction."
Naturally they asked, "What is the difference between reaction and response?"
And Buddha said, "Sit down and I will explain it to you."
And the enemies turned into disciples! They were listening to Buddha, sitting silently; listening to what he was saying. They were converted. Buddha said, "If you had come ten years ago, when I was asleep just as you are, I would have reacted. You would have pushed my buttons."
When you push the button and the fan goes on it is not a response; it is a reaction, it is mechanical. When you push the button and the lights go on or off, it is a reaction not a response. The light, the fan, or any other mechanism, has no freedom to choose; it simply reacts. Response means choice, response means "chosen with consciousness."
Buddha said, "Ten years ago if you had said these words to me I would have cut off your heads -- I used to carry a sword with me. But now I am awake. I listened to your words and I felt deep compassion for you -- that you were torturing yourselves unnecessarily. You cannot force me to do something -- I am not a machine, now I am a man. You cannot force me to do anything; I act out of my own choice. Hence it is not reaction, it is action, and action is a response. I see the whole situation, then out of my consciousness I act. At this moment I am feeling so compassionate for you, so sorry for you, that I cannot speak the same language that you are speaking to me."

The man who is asleep reacts; he knows nothing of action. And reaction is a binding: it binds you into new prisons, new chains. Response is out of freedom, hence it brings more freedom. Reaction is out of the past; you act according to your memories, built-in by your experiences, conditionings. You react not to the present, not in the present. You don't reflect the real situation as it is; you go on interpreting it according to your past, your past experiences.
The man who is awake is like a mirror: he reflects that which is the case. HE IS AWAKE.

THE VICTORY IS HIS.
HE HAS CONQUERED THE WORLD.

And Buddha says: It is only by awakening that one becomes victorious; not by conquering the world but by conquering one's unconsciousness.
There are only two types of people in the world: the Alexander the Great type and the Buddha type. There are millions... in fact ninety-nine point nine percent of people belong to the Alexander type -- small Alexanders and big Alexanders, but Alexanders all. Everybody is trying to conquer the world in his own way, big or small, through money, power, prestige. And everybody is carrying a deep desire, a great longing to succeed one day in becoming the most famous man in the world, the most powerful man in the world. This is the Alexander type, the extrovert, the worldly; he accumulates money, possessions, but he loses his soul.
And there are very rare, very few people in the world who belong to the Buddha type, who are no longer interested in the world, whose whole interest is in self-actualization, in self-realization, in becoming more aware of the reality that they are.
These are not fixed types, they are liquid. Anyone who belongs to the Alexander category can move to the category of being a buddha. And all the buddhas, in their past, had belonged to the Alexander category, and all those who are Alexanders now can become buddhas one day. It all depends on you; a conscious, deliberate choice is needed: that you turn your energies from extroversion into introversion, that you become more interested in the inner reality, that you become more interested in your subjectivity rather than in objects. You start moving, diving deeply into your interiority to find the center of your being.
And the magic is, the moment you find the center of your being you have found the center of the whole existence -- because there is only one center; my center and your center are not two centers. Anybody who moves inwards comes to the same center. On the periphery we are different people; at the center we are one.
HE IS AWAKE. THE VICTORY IS HIS. And Buddha says: The real conqueror is not the one who has conquered the world but the one who has conquered himself. He has conquered the world too, not in a visible way but in a very very invisible way. He becomes the master.

Buddha came to a town. The king of the town was reluctant to go and receive him, because he said, "I am a great king and he is just a beggar."
But his prime minister -- an old man, a wise man -- insisted that, "Either you come to receive Buddha or accept my resignation."
This was too much, because that old man was absolutely needed by the kingdom. The king was utterly dependent on the old man and his advice; he could not afford to lose him. He said, "But why? Why are you so insistent? He is just a beggar, and I am a king!"
The prime minister said, "To be frank, he is the king and you are the beggar! Either you come with me to receive him or accept my resignation, because I cannot serve such a stupid person who can't see a simple fact: Buddha is the real conqueror of the world. What do YOU possess? -- a few things; they will be taken when death comes. But what HE possesses, nobody can take away, not even death. He has conquered himself, and conquering himself is conquering the world."
The young king had to go to receive Buddha. When he was bowing down to Buddha, Buddha said, "No need to bow down to a beggar!"
He was very much shocked: "How does he know?" In that shock his eyes were opened. He looked at Buddha: that grace, that beauty, that silence, that light, that love -- he had never seen it anywhere else. He bowed again.
Buddha said, "Now it is right, now it is of your heart! Otherwise you were following the advice of your prime minister. Now you are really bowing down because you have seen me."
It is rare to find a buddha and more rare to recognize him, because you go on seeing with your old eyes, with your old, stupid mind. Your stupid mind is unable to see buddhahood. It can see only things; it cannot see the immaterial, the mysterious. It can only see the gross, not the subtle.

One Friday night Bob came home earlier than usual and surprised his attractive wife in bed with another man. Becoming enraged, he seized a pistol he kept hidden in his dresser and shot the lovers to death.
A next-door neighbor, Jim, was discussing the tragedy with some friends a few days later. Jim said, "Well, after all, it is not the worst thing that could have happened."
The others jumped on him. "What do you mean? Two people dead, and Bob may be about to be executed!"
Jim replied, "Well, I still say it could have been worse. If Bob had come home early on Thursday night, I would be dead!"

Man lives in such unconsciousness. He goes on doing things motivated by the unconscious. He is not master of his own soul. He does not know where these desires arise from; they simply possess him. And when he is possessed by a desire, he is utterly helpless.
The buddha is awake, awake to all that is happening in his being; so alert that nothing can take possession of him, so full of light that no darkness can enter into his own being. He lives in that light, he lives with that awareness. His every movement, his every act, comes out of this consciousness. Hence there is never any repentance in a buddha. He never looks back; there is no point. Each thing that he has done, he has done totally and perfectly.
You always have to look back, for the simple reason that you are always partial, fragmentary. Only a part of your being gets involved, and you do everything in such a way that you are not totally in it, never wholly in it. Later on you start thinking, "I should have done that," or "I should have done this," or "maybe a better way of doing it was possible." You start repenting, you start feeling guilty. Your actions are so incomplete, that's why there is this hang-up. When some action is done with your totality, when you are entirely in it, then once you are out of it, you are entirely out of it.
Remember this fundamental law: if you are totally into something, you can be totally out of it. If you are not totally in it you will remain involved in it even when the time is past; even when its days are gone you will remain involved in it. Some part of you will go on clinging to the past, and you will always feel miserable. Whatsoever you choose, misery is bound to follow, because sooner or later you will realize that you could have done better.
But a man of awareness knows that there is no possibility of doing it any better. Then what is the point of remembering it? He does not remember the past. Not that he has no memory -- he has a clearer memory than you have -- but that memory is just a silent storage. If he needs it, that memory can be used, but he is not a slave to the memory.
And he never thinks of the future. He never rehearses for the future, because he knows that "Whatsoever happens, I will always be there with my totality. More than that is not possible." So he simply acts spontaneously, with no memory, with no future projection. His act is total AND of the present -- and the act which is total AND of the present brings freedom.

HOW CAN HE LOSE THE WAY
WHO IS BEYOND THE WAY?
HIS EYE IS OPEN.
HIS FOOT IS FREE.
WHO CAN FOLLOW AFTER HIM?

HOW CAN HE LOSE THE WAY WHO IS BEYOND THE WAY? By becoming fully aware you are freed from all ways, all methods, all techniques. All techniques and methods are just to bring you to the way -- the way that leads inwards. But once you have reached your innermost core, no method, no technique, no way, is needed. You have gone beyond, you have transcended all. Now you cannot go astray. How can you go astray if there is no way? Now you cannot do anything wrong. If there is no method, how are you going to do anything wrong? HOW CAN HE LOSE THE WAY WHO IS BEYOND THE WAY?
That is the state of a buddha. He cannot fall from that state, because it is not something like an achievement; it is your natural, spontaneous being. Once known it is forever yours. Even if you want to escape from it you cannot.
HIS EYE IS OPEN. Remember, Buddha is not saying: His EYES are open. He says: HIS EYE IS OPEN. We have two eyes; these two eyes look outwards. To look at the objective world we need two eyes, because the objective world is the world of duality. But there is one more eye which looks inwards; your two eyes looking inwards become one. Hence the idea of the third eye.
The third eye is only a metaphysical idea, but of great significance -- a metaphor. Not that there actually is a third eye, that if you operate on your skull you will find a third eye inside -- no. But there is an insight which is not divided in two; it is single, singular, it is one. Hence Buddha says: HIS EYE IS OPEN. Not "eyes" but "eye"; he can see inwards.
And again he says: HIS FOOT IS FREE. Not his feet, because the question is not of moving outwards but moving inwards.
In the inner world, everything is one; in the outer world, everything is two.
WHO CAN FOLLOW AFTER HIM? You cannot follow a buddha; you can understand him. You can learn much from a buddha, but you cannot follow him. You can't be a blind follower to him; you cannot simply say, "I believe."
There are a few people, particularly Indians, who come to me and say, "We don't need any meditation -- we believe in you. We don't need to go into any therapy groups -- we trust that your blessing is enough." Now these people are using beautiful words, but they are deceiving themselves.
Buddha has said: Buddhas can only point the way, but you have to go on it on your own. Nobody else can walk for you and nobody else can see for you. You will have to see your inner being yourself. There, at your innermost core, you will have to go alone, absolutely alone.
But you can learn much in the presence of a buddha. You can imbibe his spirit, you can start pulsating with his energy. You can be so utterly silent in his presence that his presence becomes a great transformation for you. But ultimately you have to go inwards alone; there, nobody can accompany you.
Buddha has said: Buddhas are like birds flying in the sky -- they don't leave any footprints. You cannot follow them, you cannot go after them. You cannot simply say, "I believe in Buddha, I believe in his compassion, and that's enough." No, it is not enough. Belief is not enough; only knowing can bring freedom. Belief brings bondage -- all beliefs bring bondage.

THE WORLD CANNOT RECLAIM HIM
OR LEAD HIM ASTRAY.
NOR CAN THE POISONED NET OF DESIRE HOLD HIM.

Once you have become awake at the center of your being, then a few things become impossible. THE WORLD CANNOT RECLAIM HIM....
The whole world with all its allurements, seductions, is absolutely impotent in impressing the buddha. He remains centered, he cannot be distracted. Distraction is possible only while you are asleep. In sleep you can decide not to be distracted, but you will be distracted. In sleep you can decide, "I will not do this," but you will have to do it.
In sleep, how many times have you decided not to be angry again? But when the opportunity arises you forget all your decisions; you are angry again. In fact, while you are deciding that "I am not going to be angry again," even then in that moment, if you look deep down, somebody is laughing, because somebody deep down knows that this is all nonsense, rubbish! And if someone else insists, "No, you have made this decision many times before and again and again you forget, and I say to you that you will be angry again," you could become so annoyed that you become angry with that person immediately -- even that may be enough to make you angry!

I have heard:
One man suffered from great anger, so much so that he killed his wife and threw his child into a well. Once he became so angry that he burned his whole house. That was too much! And later on he repented very much.
Accidentally a Jaina monk had come to the place. He went to the Jaina monk and he said, "Initiate me, because I don't think that I will ever get rid of my anger if I don't change my life drastically."
Now, that "drastically" changing your life is again an expression of anger. A drastic change is an angry change. But the Jaina monk was as asleep as this person -- he was very happy, he was getting one disciple! He immediately initiated him.
Jaina monks live naked. He immediately threw off all his clothes. The teacher was very impressed. He said, "It took me five years, slowly slowly to drop my clothes. You are a rare man -- within a moment you have thrown off all your clothes!"
There is a procedure in the Jaina system that first you reduce your clothes to three, then to two, then to one, and then finally you drop that one too. Go slowly, practice, so that you don't feel ashamed of being naked. But a practiced thing is not a real thing; all that is cultivated is false.
The teacher was very much impressed -- but in fact it was also part of the anger of this man... who could burn his house, who could kill his wife, who could throw his innocent child into a well and kill him. This man was capable of doing anything! He could throw off his clothes and be naked. It looks like great renunciation -- it is nothing. If you look deep down, it is anger standing on its head; it is anger against anger.
Soon the man became very famous. Such people can become very famous, because whatsoever they do, they do with passion, with a certain intensity, with fire. He fasted long....
The teacher gave him the name Shantinath -- SHANTINATH means "lord of peace" -- just to remind him that he had renounced anger, now peace had to be his style of life.
And for ten years he was not angry -- not even for a single moment. In fact there was no need, no opportunity arose. Anger does not come from out of the blue; it needs a certain context. His wife was not there, his child was not there, the house, the family, the business, the people, nobody was there. And he was so highly respected; the whole country came to know about this great man, this mahatma.
He was in New Delhi. One of his old friends came to the capital, for some business purpose, but when he came to know that his friend was staying in Delhi and he had become a well-known personality -- the whole land worshipped him -- naturally he went to see him and pay his homage. But deep down he was a little suspicious, because he had known this man from his very childhood; he could not believe that he had really become "lord of peace." He was a devil incarnate! Was it possible -- such a change and so suddenly? He was suspicious, but changes happen in the world. He went.
He had hoped that the great man would at least recognize him; they were old childhood friends -- for forty years they had known each other. But the great man had become so great now, how could he recognize his friend? He recognized -- the friend immediately knew that he had recognized him -- but he wouldn't look at him. In fact, he avoided him; that very avoiding was an indication that he had recognized him.
The friend thought that nothing had changed -- the anger had now become his ego.
When all the other people were gone the friend remained there; he came close. He asked, "Sir, can I ask your name?"
Shantinath, Lord of Peace, was a little disturbed. What stupidity! All the newspapers printed his pictures and his name. On All-India Radio his name was broadcasted, he was shown on television. Everybody knew about him, he was a household name, and this fool was asking his name! But he didn't show anything on the surface. He simply said, "My name is Shantinath."
Some metaphysical dialogue followed, and the man again asked, "Sir, I have forgotten your name. What is your name?"
Now fire came to the eyes of the mahatma! But still he tried to control, though his face was getting red. He said, "I have told you. You seem to be an idiot! Can't you understand a simple name? My name is Shantinath!"
Again some little spiritual discussion followed, and the man said, "Sir, I have forgotten your name."
Shantinath took his staff in his hand and he said, "This is the last time -- enough is enough! If you ask me the fourth time I will break your skull! My name is Shantinath -- Lord of Peace."
And the friend said, "Now I have understood. You certainly are Lord of Peace -- your red eyes, your face, your fire and the staff in your hand! No, I will not ask the fourth time. I know that you killed your wife, you killed your child -- you can kill me!"

People don't change: so unconscious, so deeply unconscious are the desires, longings -- anger, greed, sexuality -- that on the surface they may seem to be changing, but deep down they don't change. By changing your character you can't change your consciousness, but vice versa it can happen: if you change your consciousness, then your character changes.
And that is the Buddha's way, that is my way too. I give you keys to change your consciousness from sleep to awakening; that is the real thing to be done. Then all that was part of sleep disappears with sleep -- anger, greed, possessiveness, jealousy; all that was part of sleep disappears. You cannot change those things unless your sleep is gone.

Enrico Caruso was the magni-idol of the world opera society in the early 1900's. He was also privately one of the more active lovers of his time. The following remark is attributed to the great Italian tenor: "I never make love in the morning," Caruso is supposed to have said. "It is bad for the voice, it is bad for the health, and besides you never know who you might meet in the afternoon."

Now you see the unconsciousness! And this is the way of almost everybody.

Two young women were having a conversation. One of them said, "I don't see what fun you and your husband have going out and getting drunk every weekend."
The other replied, "Well, every time he gets boozed up he thinks I am somebody else and sneaks me home the back way!"

Yes, when you are drunk you can even love your own wife. Even the impossible becomes possible when you are drunk. And this drunkenness is not new; it is very ancient, millions of years old. Hence it takes great effort to wake up. Once you are awake: THE WORLD CANNOT RECLAIM HIM OR LEAD HIM ASTRAY, NOR CAN THE POISONED NET OF DESIRE HOLD HIM.

HE IS AWAKE!

Again and again Buddha repeats: HE IS AWAKE!

THE GODS WATCH OVER HIM.

The moment you are awake the whole existence supports you, the whole existence becomes tremendously friendly. That is what Buddha means by "gods watch him, watch over him" -- every care is taken of him. Not that there are gods, but the whole existence itself, all the elements of nature, visible, invisible, start becoming very friendly towards the man who is awake, because he is the most precious treasure. In him nature has become fulfilled, in him existence has blossomed. He is the goal of all existence: the whole existence is moving towards buddhahood. And whenever one person becomes a buddha, a shiver of joy goes all over the universe... ripples of joy, great rejoicing.
HE IS AWAKE! Remind yourself again and again, the definition of a buddha is: HE IS AWAKE! -- and you are asleep.

A couple named George and Christine had been engaged for years and had put off their wedding day repeatedly because George's work was so important to him he didn't feel he could take any time off even for a honeymoon. Finally, however, Christine's constant prodding made him weaken and they were married. They were all set to drive off to Hollywood on their honeymoon when George got a phone call from his boss.
"Yes, sir," George said, "I will be right there."
"But George," wailed Christine, "what about our honeymoon?"
"I am sorry, honey," he said, "it can't be helped. There is an emergency situation at the office and I am the only one who can take care of it. I will tell you what: you drive out to Hollywood as we planned and I will catch a plane after things are straightened out and meet you there."
"But what if I arrive before you do?" she asked. "What can I do about our honeymoon?"
"Well," George replied, "just begin without me."

Man thinks he is living, but without awareness there is no possibility of life. How can you have a honeymoon without a husband? How can you begin it?
We are born, that is true, but we are not yet alive -- and that is far more true. We have to be reborn. Just as one day a child comes out of the mother's womb; that is a physical birth... the mother's womb is a physical phenomenon. Then one day you have to come out of the womb of your psychology, of your mind.
Unless you come out of your mind and become a no-mind you will not know what life is all about, you will live in vain. You will not have your honeymoon, it is impossible. You will not know the sweetness that existence is full of and the ecstasy. That is all yours just for the asking, but you have to do one thing -- you have to risk.
The child coming out of the mother's womb risks. His risk is great, because for nine months he has known a certain way of life, the most relaxed way he will ever know: no worries, no responsibilities. He is simply enjoying. It is a long long holiday, nine months' holiday, and everything is provided for. He has not even to breathe -- the mother breathes for him. Food is supplied, everything reaches him. He goes on growing, he simply rests. Now coming out of this womb there is a risk, a great risk: losing your old style of life, so comfortable, so secure, so silent, so immensely relaxed. But every child takes the risk, comes out of the womb, enters into the world of worries, responsibilities, anxieties, challenges. And they are needed for your maturity, for your growth.
One more time you will have to come out of the womb. That womb is your mind, and it is far more difficult to leave it. And many die in that womb, they never come out of it. Those who come out of it are the buddhas.
The way to come out of it is to become more and more a witness of your own mind; that is the way of coming out of your mind. Your witnessing creates distance, your witnessing creates a separation from the mind. Your umbilical cord is cut. Slowly slowly, your identity with your mind is dropped. You start looking at yourself as consciousness; not as mind, not as thought, but as consciousness. That is the great beginning, the real life, the real honeymoon with life, honeymoon with God.
HE IS AWAKE! THE GODS WATCH OVER HIM. And don't be worried that out of your mind you may be unprotected, insecure. The whole existence will care about you, you will be taken care of. The whole existence becomes a mother to you.
Move into the insecurity of no-mind and you will find the real security: the security of insecurity. That's the definition of sannyas: the security of insecurity.

HE IS AWAKE
AND FINDS JOY IN THE STILLNESS OF MEDITATION
AND IN THE SWEETNESS OF SURRENDER.

Again and again Buddha repeats: HE IS AWAKE -- because that is the most essential quality. Everything else follows it, everything else is secondary.

The husband came home to discover his wife in the passionate embrace of his best friend.
"I love him, John," she said to her astonished spouse.
"See here," said the friend, "we are all too sophisticated to let a situation like this get out of hand. Tell you what we will do -- we are both sportsmen; I will play you a game of gin rummy for her."
The husband thought about that for a moment. "Alright," he said, "but let us play for a penny a point on the side, just to keep it interesting."

You cannot hide your unconsciousness; it surfaces. Your reality goes on expressing itself -- you may not be able to see it, but everybody else can see it. This is a strange world! You may not see your unconsciousness, but everybody knows about it, just as YOU know about everybody else's. Because we pay more attention to people than we do to our own mind, we are capable of knowing their faults, their reasons for misery, their causes of hell. We are very wise as far as others are concerned and we are very unwise as far as we are concerned -- with our own inner being.
We are focused on others, and this creates two things: you can't help others, you can only condemn them. And your condemnation is not going to change them; in return they will condemn you.
So society becomes a game of condemning each other. Nobody sees his own faults; on the contrary, everybody tries to cover them up. Not that he does not want to see them, he does not want them to be seen by others. But you can't help it: others are bound to see, because whatsoever there is in your unconscious goes on surfacing.

Doris, Carol and Maria were arrested and brought into night court.
The judge looked at Doris and she rolled her eyes and exhibited her legs.
"What is your business?" the judge demanded.
"Well, Judge," she cooed, "I am a dressmaker and this awful cop...."
"Thirty days!" interrupted His Honor.
Carol was called and she tried the weeping stunt. "Ah, Your Honor, I am a respectable dressmaker with a family to support, a crippled mother and a dying baby."
"Thirty days!" rasped the judge.
Maria was called to order and the judge asked, "What is your business?"
"I am a whore," she answered.
"How is business?" he asked.
"Just lousy," said Maria, "what with all these dressmakers around!"

It is very easy, very very easy, to see others. Everybody is transparent to everybody else; just to himself he is completely blind.
And when Buddha says: HE IS AWAKE, he means: he has started changing his focus, his attention, from others to himself. He is turning inwards. He is showering his whole consciousness upon his own being. In that very showering he is bathed, he becomes new, he is reborn -- AND FINDS JOY IN THE STILLNESS OF MEDITATION.
And meditation in the East is not what is understood in the West by the word. In the West, meditation means contemplation: meditating on God, meditating on truth, meditating on love.
People ask me sometimes, "You tell us to meditate, but on what?"
If you meditate ON something, you are not meditating at all, because you are again focused on something outside of yourself. It may be love, it may be truth, it may be God, it makes no difference.
Meditation in the East has a totally different meaning, just the opposite of the Western meaning. Meditation in the East means no object in the mind, no content in the mind; not meditating upon something but dropping everything; NETI, NETI, neither this nor that. Meditation is emptying yourself of all content. When there is no thought moving inside you there is stillness; that stillness is meditation. Not even a ripple arises in the lake of your consciousness; that silent lake, absolutely still, that is meditation.
And in that meditation you will know -- you will know what truth is, you will know what love is, you will know what God is. Not by meditating on God.... See the point: how can you meditate on God? You don't know anything about God. All your meditation is going to be just imagination, an exercise of imagination. You don't know truth -- what are you going to meditate upon? Some idea given by others, some belief, some concept! It is not going to help.
Buddha's way is: first become meditation, and then in meditation, truth, God, love, and all that is transcendental will be revealed to you. Meditation opens the eye and frees the foot.
... AND IN THE SWEETNESS OF SURRENDER. And in meditation, surrender happens -- surrender to the whole. Not to any idea, not to any idol, but to the whole. Not surrender to Krishna or Christ, but to the whole of existence. Nothing is excluded, everything is included in it, from the rocks to the stars, from a blade of grass to the sun. Everything is included: this whole organic, ecstatic celebration which we call the universe.
Why do we call it the universe? Because it is one -- 'uni' means one. Although we go on behaving as if it is a multiverse; it is not, it is a universe. It is one organic unity; it is a dynamic unity and it is organic too. It is tremendous ecstasy to meet and merge into it, to dissolve yourself into it. That is surrender. The river moving into the ocean is surrender. Two lovers dissolving into each other is surrender. But these are small surrenders, indicative only, fingers pointing to the moon.
The ultimate surrender is your individuality moving into the universality. You are becoming part of the whole.

HARD IT IS TO BE BORN....

Buddha means it is hard to be born as a human being. It takes millions of lives to arrive at this stage.

HARD IT IS TO LIVE....

And even if you are born, life is not easy. It is very hard, it is difficult, arduous, a thousand and one problems always surrounding you and no solution seems possible -- insoluble problems. But these are nothing compared to the third thing:

HARDER STILL TO HEAR OF THE WAY....

To be born is hard, because you could have been a dog or a tiger or an elephant or an ant or a rosebush. There are millions of forms; from all those planes you cannot enter into buddhahood. After millions and millions of births you have come to the crossroads. Man is a crossroad: from man all the dimensions are open. And it is up to you to move, up to you to choose, up to you to be whatsoever you want to be. In the whole of existence only man is a free being. It is a glory, a great gift of God.
HARD IT IS TO BE BORN, and HARD IT IS TO LIVE. Life is not easy. And a life of unconsciousness -- how can it be easy? You create your own problems. You dig ditches into which you yourself are going to fall, you create walls which become imprisonments for you. You are your worst enemy.
Life is hard, but the hardest thing is to hear of the way: to find a buddha, a master -- a Christ, a Zarathustra, a Lao Tzu. It is very hard to find a buddha, and harder to hear him and to understand what he is saying. It is easier to misunderstand him, it is easier not to recognize him. You can find a thousand and one rationalizations and deny him. In fact you will try, because your ego is at stake. If you recognize somebody as a buddha, that means you have to surrender. Recognizing a buddha and not surrendering to him is impossible. Recognizing a buddha and surrendering to him is a natural phenomenon.
Once you recognize somebody as awakened, enlightened, there is no way to escape, you have to surrender. If you want to escape, then be alert. From the very beginning don't recognize, from the very beginning create barriers -- as many as you can. Distort everything, bring in all your prejudices. Don't see -- close your eyes. Don't listen, become deaf. Don't feel, and escape from the buddhafield, because who knows -- sometimes it happens in spite of you.
It is happening to many here in spite of themselves. They had not come here to stay forever. They had come out of curiosity, or a friend was coming and they accompanied him, or they were just passing from Kabul to Goa, or Kathmandu to Goa... and they were trapped in Poona! Then they forgot about Kathmandu and Kabul and Goa and all disappeared, the whole world disappeared. They entered into a totally different reality. They may not have come consciously, they may have resisted, reluctantly they may have decided to be here for a few days. Seeing so many people involved, they may have thought there must be something.
It is hard to recognize a buddha, to hear him silently, without distorting, without bringing your mind in. It is hard to understand him, because he speaks from a different altitude. He speaks from the peaks of the Himalayas, and you live in the dark valleys down below. The distance is great. He shouts so that he can reach you, but by the time his words reach you they are no longer the same. By the time they reach to your heart, much of their flavor, their authenticity, their truth, is lost. But though it is hard it happens -- and if you are courageous enough it can happen to you.
It has never been that there was not a buddha alive in the world, somewhere, in some part of the world. There has always been a source, there has always been a boat ready to take you to the other shore. If anything is missing it is just readiness on your part.
HARDER STILL TO HEAR OF THE WAY....

AND HARD TO RISE, FOLLOW, AND AWAKE.

And the hardest thing, Buddha says, is: Even if you hear a buddha it is hard to rise to those heights. It is a tremendous effort, an arduous journey, a great pilgrimage to rise to those heights... because you cannot truly understand a buddha unless YOU become a buddha yourself. The only way to understand a buddha is to be a buddha.
... HARD TO RISE, FOLLOW, AND AWAKE. Yes, you can understand intellectually, but intellectual understanding is not going to help; it may even become a hindrance. It will give you the idea in your sleep that you have understood... now there is no need to bother much more, you already know.
Intellectually, many people who come here know what Jesus says, what Buddha says. Intellectually they can analyze, they can discuss, but that is not the point. Knowing has to be existential, not intellectual. Intellect can be used as a stepping-stone, but it is not the real temple, it is only a stepping-stone.
You have to experience what Buddha is saying; what Buddha teaches has to become your own experience. You have to become a witness to this experience. Then only have you followed, then only have you risen, then only are you awake.

YET THE TEACHING IS SIMPLE.

Buddha says: Although it is hard to find and recognize a master, hard to understand, hard to realize the understanding, actualize the understanding in your life, it still has to be said that the teaching is simple. The difficulty arises from you; the teaching is very simple. It has to be so: truth is always simple.
The complexity is in you, and it is because of your complexity that a simple truth becomes very complex. You don't want to hear or you want to hear something else. You come for consolations, not for revolutions. You come to be patted, you come to be told that you are perfectly right. You come to be accepted and loved, not to be transformed. You come to be respected. You also come so that you can feel that you are important, needed.
The deepest need of the mind is to be needed. And if you start feeling that a master needs you, that you are indispensable, that gives you a great ego, but you have missed the whole point. You come so full of ideas -- and those ideas go on making such noise in you -- that when Buddha is shouting from the housetops, even then you listen only to that which you want to listen to.

A man walks into an ice cream shop. "I will have a gallon of chocolate ice cream."
"Sorry, we are all out of chocolate," says the clerk.
"In that case I will have a quart of chocolate ice cream."
"Listen, we don't have any chocolate."
"Well, in that case I will have a double scoop chocolate cone."
"Mister, we are all out of chocolate, all out!"
"Well, I guess I will just have some chocolate ice cream in a cup."
"Wait a second!" cries the clerk. "Can you spell the water in watermelon?"
"Sure!" says the man.
"Can you spell the gold in goldfish?"
"Easy!" says the man.
"Well, can you spell the fuck in chocolate?"
"Wait a second, there is no fuck in chocolate."
"That's what I have been trying to tell you!"

But it is very difficult when you are obsessed with something to understand a simple thing. YET THE TEACHING IS SIMPLE.

DO WHAT IS RIGHT.

And in Buddha's way, the right is that which is done consciously. That is his definition of right. DO WHAT IS RIGHT.

BE PURE.

And by purity he always means innocence: a state of not-knowing, a state of functioning like a child. He perfectly agrees with Christ, that: Unless you are like a small child you will not enter into my kingdom of God.
Be a child again. Your knowledgeability is a great obstruction in the way -- remove it. Be innocent.

AT THE END OF THE WAY IS FREEDOM.

And if you can fulfill these simple things -- awareness, rightness, innocence -- which are just three faces of the same phenomenon of being conscious, of being meditative, then: AT THE END OF THE WAY IS FREEDOM. Then you will attain to absolute freedom. His word is nirvana. Nirvana means absolute freedom: not freedom for the ego, but freedom FROM the ego; not freedom for you, but freedom from yourself. Freedom to Buddha is equivalent to God. He never uses the word 'God', because God has become a bondage to many people. He uses the word 'freedom' -- moksha or nirvana.
Nirvana means cessation of the ego; literally it means blowing out a candle. Just as you blow out a candle and it disappears and cannot be found anywhere -- it disappears into the whole -- so disappears the ego of the awakened one. And in that disappearance of the ego you become unlimited. The dewdrop falling into the ocean becomes the ocean itself; then there is no limit to you. That is freedom.

TILL THEN, PATIENCE.

But it may not happen today. You may not be immediately ready to take the jump. Till then, patience is needed. Buddha says: YET THE TEACHING IS VERY SIMPLE. He has reduced it to a few words: DO WHAT IS RIGHT. That is, do everything consciously. BE PURE... innocent, childlike... and be patient. Don't be in a hurry. At the end, freedom is inevitable; it is a by-product of total awareness.

IF YOU WOUND OR GRIEVE ANOTHER,
YOU HAVE NOT LEARNED DETACHMENT.

Detachment is also one of the by-products of awareness. If you are alert you cannot wound or grieve another, because you know there is no other; it is all one reality. Wounding somebody else... is as if you are wounding yourself -- maybe your right hand wounding your left hand -- and the pain will be yours. You can wound somebody, but ultimately you have wounded yourself because there is nobody else, it is all oneness.

OFFEND IN NEITHER WORD NOR DEED.
EAT WITH MODERATION.
LIVE IN YOUR HEART.
SEEK THE HIGHEST CONSCIOUSNESS.

Simple statements, not a very complex theology that he gives to the world. He says: Don't offend anybody, avoid it. Don't hurt anybody. People enjoy hurting, because the more you can hurt, the more power you feel. But the power is of the ego, and the ego is going to become, more and more, a heavy load for you. Don't hurt. Don't feed the ego.
EAT WITH MODERATION. Buddha is always in favor of moderation: avoid excess in everything. He is not in favor of fasting. He says don't eat too much, and he says don't eat too little -- moderation. Just be in the middle, always in the middle. Be balanced, keep an equilibrium. LIVE IN YOUR HEART. And slip down from the head to the heart, from thinking to feeling, from logic to love.
AND SEEK THE HIGHEST CONSCIOUSNESS. And keep only one goal: constantly be mindful of it, remember it -- that you have to become a buddha. Less than that is not going to fulfill you.
SEEK THE HIGHEST CONSCIOUSNESS. With these simple requirements fulfilled, one day you will bloom into a one-thousand-petaled lotus. You have the potential to be a buddha; if you don't fulfill it you will live in misery, you will die in misery, you will be born again in misery, and the wheel will continue.
This is an opportunity here for you to jump out of the wheel. Don't miss the opportunity.

Enough for today.


Next: Chapter 2: Many are called; few are chosen, Question 1

 


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