Chapter 8: Trust is a touchstone,

Question 1



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Question 1


Nothing sir, nothing in particular. Exactly nothing: that's the commodity I deal in. Literally, it is much ado about nothing. But the nothing is not just nothing; it is the source of all.

Sannyas means you are tired of being yourself and you are ready to drop that burden. You are tired of being and you would like to rest in nonbeing. Sannyas is a state of nonbeing. You drop yourself and you enter the realm of nothingness... and suddenly everything is beautiful -- because things were ugly because of you. They were not ugly in the first place, not ugly themselves, it was your interpretation; you were corrupting them. Now the corrupting agent is no more there, eyes are clear and one can see through and through; one's vision is transparent. YOU disappear in sannyas. And the moment you disappear, immediately, instantly, God appears. When you are not, God is.

So sannyas is not a way to decorate your being. Sannyas is utterly destructive. I annihilate you. In the old Eastern scriptures it is said, "The master is a death." The master is the greatest death -- but only through death, new life becomes possible. The greater the death, the greater the resurrection. Let me be your cross. Die in me so that you can be reborn.

You ask what will happen if you take sannyas. This question arises out of fear, out of greed. You would like to be certain, promised, what will happen. If I promise you anything that very promise will become the barrier; then sannyas will not happen -- because to whom am I promising? To you: to your greed, to your ambition, to your desire -- to all that nonsense I am promising -- and that whole nonsense has to go. Not even a bit can be allowed to remain. If even a bit remains, that's enough. Ego is like cancer: you have to utterly annihilate it. Even if a small part remains somewhere, it will grow again... and cancer grows fast.

Kamal has sent me a beautiful anecdote; I would like you to meditate over it...

Once Mulla Nasruddin came home, as usual very drunk. His wife was in a rage, more so because he had just promised the other day that he was trying to leave his habit by and by. And the wife said, "Now, what about your leaving the habit?" Mulla said he had tried his best to break the habit, but when he cut `h' from the word `habit' still `a bit' remained. When he cut `a' still `bit' remained, and when he cut `b' still `it' remained.

Ego is like that. You go on cutting: `a bit' remains... `bit' remains... `it' remains -- but it REMAINS. And this desire to be certain what is going to happen, is an effort of the ego to survive even sannyas. No, I cannot promise you. You are to go TOTALLY -- then something is going to happen. But you cannot even conceive it, what it is.

It is just like a blind man asking, "What is going to happen when my eyes will be operated on and I will be able to see? What is going to happen? Tell me -- otherwise I am not going to take this operation. Let me first be certain. Let me feel what is going to happen." What can you say to the blind man? Can you say, "You will be able to see colors and the rainbow and the butterflies and the flowers"? "you will be able to see light -- light playing on water, sunrays being reflected by dewdrops"? He will say, "What you are saying is all nonsense. I don't know what you are talking about. Talk sense!" Because to talk to a blind person in the language of those who have eyes is nonsense. I cannot say to you what is going to happen, and whatsoever I say you will not be able to understand, and whatsoever YOU can understand is not going to happen. Hence trust is needed.

Sannyas is not a conversion, it is a quantum leap in trust. Sannyas is a gambling, it is not a bargain. I can say only one thing: you will not be there. Something will be there -- call it "x". Old religions call it God. Buddha calls it nirvana, Jesus calls it the kingdom of God. But all those words are meaningless to you. Kingdom of God? -- talking about a rainbow to a blind man? talking about Beethoven's symphony to a deaf man? No, it does not carry any meaning. I cannot say what is going to happen. The only meaningful word that I can say is: Nothing is going to happen, exactly nothing. But remember, nothing does not mean nothing; it means the source of all. That's what Buddha's word `nirvana' means: nirvana means `nothing'. Nirvana simply means you will cease to be, you will not be there.

The word `nirvana' means exactly as when you put off a candle. When you blow a candle out, if somebody asks where the light has gone what will you say? You will say it has disappeared into nothingness; it is no more, it is lost into the whole. To put a candle off, to blow a candle out, is the literal meaning of the word `nirvana'. Sannyas is a readiness to be put off: the candle that is burning in you, the candle of ego, will not longer be there. Instead of it there will be a tremendous space.... But that space is not known to you, it is not your experience.

You can see it in my eyes if you try. You can feel it in my presence if you allow. But to say anything about it will not carry meaning. It will become philosophy; it will not be truth. Truth uttered becomes false -- not because it is uttered but because those who will hear it are bound to misunderstand it. Either they know it -- then they can understand it, but then there is no need to utter it; or they know not -- then the need is there to utter it but then they cannot understand it, they can only misunderstand.

If you allow me, totally, unconditionally, something is going to happen -- something of tremendous import, immeasurable.... Even the sky is not the limit for it, because it has no limit. It is tremendous, huge; it is oceanic. But if you don't allow me, then too, nothing will happen -- nothing in the sense that you know the word. If you allow me then nothing will happen in the sense I am using the word. If you don't allow me, you can take sannyas, you will be in orange -- but the same old ego will now be hiding behind orange. Maybe the ego will even become more strengthened.

I have heard...

An organ-grinder appeared beneath Mascagni's window one morning and began to play the famous "Intermezzo". He played at such a fast tempo that the composer could not stand it. Rushing to the street, Mascagni seized the handle of the instrument and turned it at the proper speed, explaining to the bewildered organ-grinder that, since he had composed the piece, he wished it to be played correctly.

The next morning, the organ-grinder appeared outside the composer's house with a huge sign in front of his organ, which read: "Pupil of the Celebrated Mascagni."

So if you don't allow me, this will happen: you will have a huge sign -- "Pupil of so-and-so, Disciple of so-and-so" -- but the sign will only be a new injection of vitality to the dying ego. it depends, because when you take sannyas two persons are involved: I am involved and you are involved. So what will be the outcome depends on us both -- me and you. If you allow me, then nothing will happen -- nothing in the sense of the vastness out of which everything arises, in the sense of God. If you don't allow me, then too, nothing will happen -- in the sense you know the word. Or, something can even go very wrong: you can become a new egoist -- the ego of the sannyasin, the ego of the meditator, the ego of the righteous, the ego of the knower.

So it depends. If you are really going to take sannyas then let it be in my way not in your way, because in your way it only appears that it has happened -- it has not happened. It can happen only in my way. In fact, you cannot take sannyas, you can only allow me to give it to you.


Next: Chapter 8: Trust is a touchstone, Question 2


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Chapter 8






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