Hsin Hsin Ming 02

Second Discourse from the series of 10 discourses - Hsin Hsin Ming by Osho.
You can listen, download or read all of these discourses on oshoworld.com.

Sosan continues:
When the deep meaning of things is not understood
the mind’s essential peace is disturbed to no avail.

The way is perfect, like vast space
when nothing is lacking and nothing is in excess.
Indeed, it is due to our choosing to accept or reject
that we do not see the true nature of things.
Live neither in the entanglements of outer things,
nor in inner feelings of emptiness.
Be serene without striving for activity in the oneness of things
and such erroneous views will disappear by themselves.
When you try to stop activity to achieve passivity
your very effort fills you with activity.
As long as you remain in one extreme or the other
you will never know oneness.
Those who do not live in the single way
fail in both activity and passivity,
assertion and denial.
A few things before we enter this sutra of Sosan. In the West, just a few years back, there was a French hypnotist, Emile Coué; he happened to rediscover one of the basic laws of the human mind. He called it “the law of reverse effect” – that is one of the oldest sutras in Taoist and Zen thinking. Sosan is talking about this law. Try to understand this law, then his sayings will be simple to understand.
For example, if you don’t feel sleepy what will you do? You will try to get to sleep – you will make efforts, you will do this and that, but whatsoever you do will bring just the reverse; just that which you need will not come. Just the opposite will happen because any activity, any effort, is against sleep.
Sleep is a relaxation. You cannot bring it, you cannot do anything for it to happen. You cannot force it, you cannot will it – it is not a part of your will at all. It is moving into the unconscious, and your will is just a fragment of the conscious.
When you move into the unconscious, toward the depth, that fragment which is consciousness, that fragment which is will, is left on the surface. You cannot take your surface to the depth, you cannot take your circumference to the center. So when you make efforts to go to sleep, it is a self-destructive thing. You are doing something which will become just the opposite – you will become more awake. The only way to enter into sleep is not to do anything. If it is not coming, it is not coming. Wait, don’t do anything! Otherwise you will push it further away and a distance will be created. Just wait on the pillow, put off the light, close your eyes, relax and wait. Whenever it comes, it comes. You cannot bring it by any act of your will – will is against the unconscious.
And this happens in many things in life: just the opposite comes out of it. If you want to be silent, what will you do? – because silence is just like sleep, you cannot force it. You can allow it to happen, it is a let-go, but there is no way to work it out. What will you do if you want to be silent? If you do anything you will be less silent than ever.
If you want to be quiet, what will you do? – because quietness means non-doing. You simply float, you simply relax. And when I say simply relax, I mean simply. No method is to be used for relaxation, because method means again you are doing something.
There is a book; the title of it is You Must Relax! And “must” is just against relaxation; the “must” should not be brought in, otherwise you will become more tense.
This law was rediscovered by Emile Coué, and he said, “Let things happen, don’t force them.” There are things which can be forced – all that belongs to the conscious mind can be forced. But there are things which cannot be forced. All that belongs to the unconscious, to your depth, cannot be forced.
It happens many times: you are trying to remember a name or a face and it is not coming, but still you feel it is just on the tip of your tongue. The feeling is so deep that you feel it is going to come and you try to bring it. And the more you try, the more it is not coming. You even become suspicious whether the feeling is true or not. But you feel…Your whole being says it is there, just on the tip of your tongue. But why is it not coming if it is on the tip of your tongue? It will not come. Do whatsoever you want to do, it will not come.
Then you get frustrated, then you feel hopeless, then you drop the whole project. You go in the garden, you start working in the garden, or you start reading the newspaper, or you put on the radio and listen to music – and suddenly it pops up. What happened?
It belonged to the unconscious, it was deep in you. And the more you tried, the narrower you became; and the more you tried, the more the unconscious was disturbed. It became a chaos, then everything became unsettled. It was there just on the tip, but because you were too active to bring it out: you were using will, and will cannot bring anything out of your depth. Only surrender brings it, only when you let go.
So when you went into the park or into the garden, started reading the newspaper, digging a hole in the earth, listening to the music, you forgot about the whole project; suddenly it was there. This is the law of reverse effect. With the unconscious, remember, will is of no use – not only of no use, it is also dangerous, harmful.
Lao Tzu, Chuang Tzu, Bodhidharma, Sosan are the masters of this law of reverse effect. And this is the difference between Yoga and Zen. Yoga makes every effort and Zen makes no effort, and Zen is truer than any Yoga. But Yoga appeals, because as far as you are concerned doing is easy – howsoever hard, but doing is easy.
Non-doing is difficult. If someone says, “Don’t do anything,” you are at a loss. You again ask, “What to do?” If someone says, “Don’t do anything,” that is the most difficult thing for you. It should not be so if you understand.
Non-doing does not require any qualification. Doing may require qualification, doing may require practice. Non-doing requires no practice. That’s why Zen says enlightenment can happen in a single moment – because it is not a question of how to bring it, it is a question of how to allow it. It is just like sleep: you relax and it is there, you relax and it pops up. It is struggling within your heart to come up. You are not allowing it because you have too much activity on the surface.
Have you ever noticed the fact that almost ninety percent of children are born in the night, not in the day? Why? It should be fifty-fifty. Why do they choose the night more? And ninety percent! – because the mother is unconscious, in a let-go. She is sleeping and the child can come out easily.
If she is aware, she will make effort and the law of reverse effect will be there. When the mother is awake, she will make every effort so that she goes beyond the pain and the thing is finished, the child is born. And every effort is a barrier; she is putting up hindrances. The more she tries, the narrower becomes the passage, and the child cannot come out.
In primitive societies mothers have no pain when they give birth to a child, none at all, no pain. And this is a miracle. When for the first time Western medical science discovered this – that there are still primitive societies where the mothers have no pain at all – they could not believe it. How is it possible?
Then many experiments were tried, many research projects, and it was found that it is because they are unconscious. They live like wild animals; there is no fight, no struggle, no forcing. They don’t will anything, they simply float. They are primitive, they don’t have a very conscious mind. The more civilized, the more you have a conscious mind. The more civilized, the more your will is trained, and your unconscious goes further and further, deeper, and there exists a gap.
If something is to be done, howsoever difficult, you can find the know-how, how to do it. You can learn the technique; there are experts, you can be trained. But in Zen nobody can be trained. In existence there are no experts and no authorities – cannot be, because it is not a question of know-how, it is a question of relaxing into your being; not doing. The greatest thing will happen to you only when you are not there. And if you are doing something you are bound to be there.
Sleep comes when you are not there. Enlightenment also follows the same rule – it comes when you are not there. But when you are doing, how will you be absent at the same time? If you are doing something you will be there. Action feeds the ego. When you are not doing anything the ego cannot be fed. It simply disappears, it dies, it is not there. And when the ego is not there, the light descends.
So whatsoever you are doing willfully will be the barrier. In my meditations here, do them, but not willfully. Don’t force them; rather, let them happen. You float in them, you abandon yourself in them. Be absorbed, but not willfully. Don’t manipulate, because when you manipulate you are divided, you become two: the manipulator and the manipulated. Once you are two, heaven and hell are created immediately; then there is vast distance between you and the truth. Don’t manipulate, allow things to happen.
If you are doing the Kundalini Meditation, allow the shaking – don’t do it! Stand silently, feel it coming, and when your body starts a little trembling, help it, but don’t do it! Enjoy it, feel blissful about it, allow it, receive it, welcome it, but don’t will it.
If you force, it will become an exercise, a bodily physical exercise. Then the shaking will be there, but just on the surface. It will not penetrate you. You will remain solid, stone-like, rock-like within. You will remain the manipulator, the doer, and the body will only be following. The body is not the question, you are the question.
When I say shake, I mean your solidity, your rock-like being should shake to the very foundations so it becomes liquid, fluid, melts, flows. And when the rock-like being becomes liquid your body will follow. Then there is no shaker, only shaking; then nobody is doing it, it is simply happening. Then the doer is not.
Enjoy it, but don’t will it. And remember, whenever you will a thing you cannot enjoy it. They are reverse, opposites; they never meet. If you will a thing you cannot enjoy it, if you enjoy it you cannot will it.
For example, you can will your love. You can do it according to the manuals, but then you will not enjoy it. If you enjoy it you will have to throw away all manuals, all Kinseys and Masters and Johnsons; you will have to throw them all away. You have to forget completely about all that you have learned about love. In the beginning you will be at a loss, because there are no guidelines, no maps. How to start?
Just wait, and let your inner energy move, and follow that energy wherever it leads. It may take a little time, but when love comes it overtakes you. You are no longer there. Love is there but there is no lover. Love happens as an energy, but it has no ego within it. Then it is tremendous, then it is a great release. And then love becomes an ecstasy, and you know something that has been known to those who have come to the divine. You know a fragment of it, a drop of the ocean. You know a ray – and then the taste comes to you.
Meditation, godliness, enlightenment, nirvana, they all came into being through love, because through love a glimpse was achieved. And when the glimpse was there, daring souls went on an adventure to find the source from where this glimpse comes. Through love, God has been discovered. That’s why Jesus goes on saying, whenever somebody asks, “What is God?” he says, “God is love,” because through love the first glimpse comes.
But the process is the same: you cannot will love. If you will, the whole beauty is lost, the whole thing becomes mechanical. You go through the whole ritual, but nothing happens. There is no ecstasy – it is something to be done and be finished. It never reaches to your center, it never shakes your foundations, it never becomes an inner dance. It is not a throbbing of your being, it is just an act on the periphery.
Remember, love cannot be willed, and neither can meditation.
Throw all knowledge, because knowledge is needed only when you have to do something. When you don’t have to do anything, what knowledge is needed? You don’t need any knowledge. You need just to have a feel, a knack – how to drop, how not to be. And when I say “how” I don’t mean technically, when I say “how” I don’t mean that you have to know a technique. You have simply to search for it.
I will suggest two things which will be helpful. One is sleep: try to find out how sleep happens, how you fall into sleep. You may have a ritual but that ritual is not creating sleep, it helps. Everybody has a ritual. Small children have their rituals, a particular posture. Every child has his own posture, he may take his thumb in his mouth. It does not give you sleep, but it helps for that child – he has found his own ritual. If you follow that child you will not fall into sleep.
And the same is the case with all techniques of meditation – everybody finds his own ritual. It helps because it gives you a climate. You put off the light, you have a certain incense burning in the room, you have a certain type of pillow, a certain height, softness. You have a certain type of rug, you have a certain posture. This all helps, but this is not the cause of it. If somebody else follows it, this may become a hindrance. One has to find one’s own ritual.
A ritual is simply to help you to be at ease and wait. And when you are at ease and waiting, the thing happens. Just like sleep godliness comes to you, just like godliness love comes to you. You cannot will it, you cannot force it.
And your whole life has become a problem because you have learned too much how to do things. You have become very efficient in mechanical things because they can be done, but you have become absolutely inefficient in human things, because they cannot be learned and they cannot be technically done; you cannot become efficiency experts in them.
Whenever there is a mechanical thing to do there can be a training place for it, but consciousness cannot be trained. And you go after gurus, this and that, to find some technique, some mantra, so that you become enlightened. There is no mantra which can make you enlightened.
This is the mantra: Sosan says that you will have to become more understanding: less will, more let-go; less effort, more effortlessness; less doing of the conscious, more swimming in the unconscious.
Now try to understand the sutra:
When the deep meaning of things is not understood
the mind’s essential peace is disturbed to no avail.
If you understand, there will be peace. If you don’t understand, there will be disturbance, tension and anguish. Whenever somebody is in anguish it shows he has not understood the thing, the deeper meaning of things.
And you go on accusing others, that because of them you are in anguish. Nobody here is in anguish because of others. You are in anguish because of your nonunderstanding or your misunderstanding.
For example, somebody came to me – a husband, a father of five children – and he said that he was very much disturbed because his wife goes on quarreling, tries to dominate him and the children don’t listen to him. “Their mother has become too influential and the children listen to her, they don’t listen to me. I am nobody and I am in much anguish. Do something for me. Through your grace let my wife become a little more understanding.”
I said, “That’s impossible. Through my grace or through anybody’s grace, the other cannot be made more understanding. You can be. And when you ask for the other’s understanding you miss the whole point. Why does the wife look dominating? She looks dominating because you are also struggling for domination. If you are not struggling for domination she will not look dominating. It is a struggle, because you are after the same goal. And what is wrong if the children follow the mother? But you would like the children to follow you, hence the struggle.”
Try to understand! Everybody is trying to dominate. That is the nature of the ego, to make every effort to dominate the other. Whether the other is husband, wife, or children or friends, makes no difference – but to dominate, to find ways and means to dominate.
And if everybody is trying to dominate and you are also trying to dominate, there will be struggle. The struggle is not because others are trying to dominate, the struggle is because you are not trying to understand how the ego functions.
Drop out of it! The others cannot be changed, and you will be unnecessarily wasting your life if you try to change the others. That is their problem. They will suffer if they are not understanding, why should you suffer? Simply understand that everybody is trying to dominate. “I drop out of it, I will not try to dominate.” Your struggle disappears. And a very beautiful thing happens.
If you don’t try to dominate, the wife starts feeling foolish, and by and by she starts looking silly to herself – because the other is no longer there to fight. When you fight you strengthen the other’s ego, and this is a vicious circle.
When you don’t fight then the other feels he is fighting alone, in a vacuum: fighting with the wind or fighting with a ghost, but not fighting with anybody. And then you give an opportunity for the other also to see, to understand. Then the wife cannot throw the responsibility on you, she has to carry her own responsibility.
The same is the problem with everybody because human nature functions similarly, more or less; the differences are only of degrees. If you try to understand, you become a dropout. Not that you drop out of the society, not that you become a hippie and go and make a commune – that is not the point. Psychologically you are no longer in these trips of the ego; domination, aggression, violence, anger. You are no longer part of it. And then a distance is created, a detachedness. Now you can look at things and you can laugh. How foolish man is! And you can laugh. How ridiculous you have always been!

It is said about Rinzai that when he got up in the morning he would laugh a belly laugh so loud that the whole monastery – five hundred sannyasins were there – would hear it. In the evening when he went to sleep, he would again have a belly laugh.
Many people asked why, but he would simply laugh and he would not answer. When he was dying somebody asked, “One thing: tell us why you were laughing every day, morning and evening, the whole of your life? Nobody knows, and whenever we asked you laughed again. This is the only mystery. Please reveal it before you leave the body.”
Rinzai said, “I laughed because of the foolishness of the world. In the morning I laughed because now again I was entering the world and everybody around was a fool. And in the evening I laughed that one day passed so well!”

You will laugh, you will not be in anguish. The whole thing is so ridiculous all around, but you cannot see it because you are a part of it. You are so much involved in it you cannot see it. The ridiculousness cannot be known unless you gain a distance, a detachedness.
Says Sosan: When the deep meaning of things is not understood the mind’s essential peace is disturbed to no avail. And you gain nothing, you reach nowhere, you simply get disturbed. Where have you reached? What have you gained by your anxiety, tension, disturbedness? What are you? Where are you moving? Nothing is gained. Even if something is gained… It may seem that through your being disturbed you are gaining something. You are not gaining something. On the contrary, you are losing. You are losing the precious moments which can become blissful, the precious time, energy, life, in which you could have flowered. And you cannot flower.
But you always think – this is the ignorant point of view – you always think, “The whole world is wrong, and if I could change everybody then I would be happy.” You will never be happy, you cannot be happy. This is the base of unhappiness. Once you understand that it is not for you to change the whole world, the only thing that you can do is to change yourself…

Bayazid, a Sufi mystic, has written in his autobiography, “When I was young I thought and I said to God, and in all my prayers this was the base: ‘Give me energy so that I can change the whole world.’ Everybody looked wrong to me. I was a revolutionary and I wanted to change the face of the earth.
“When I became a little more mature I started praying: ‘This seems to be too much. Life is going out of my hands – almost half of my life is gone and I have not changed a single person, and the whole world is too much.’ So I said to God, ‘My family will be enough. Let me change my family.’
“And when I became old,” says Bayazid, “I realized that even the family is too much, and who am I to change them? Then I realized that if I can change myself that will be enough, more than enough. I prayed to God, ‘Now I have come to the right point. At least allow me to do this: I would like to change myself.’
“God replied, ‘Now there is no time left. This you should have asked in the beginning, then there was a possibility.’”

This, everybody asks in the end. One who asks in the beginning, he has understood the nature of things. He understands that even to change oneself is not an easy thing. You are a whole world within you; you carry the whole world. All that exists, exists within you. You are a whole universe, not a small thing – if this change can happen you have attained. Otherwise:
When the deep meaning of things is not understood,
the mind’s essential peace is disturbed to no avail.

The way is perfect, like vast space
where nothing is lacking and nothing is in excess.
Indeed, it is due to our choosing to accept or reject
that we do not see the true nature of things.
The way is perfect, like vast space where nothing is lacking and nothing is in excess. Everything is as it should be, you just have to settle in it; only you are unsettled. Everything is as it should be. Nothing is lacking and nothing is in excess.
Can you think of a better universe than this? If you are wise, you cannot; if you are a fool you can. Nothing can be better than this, as it is. The only problem is you are not settled in it. Be settled in it and: The way is perfect, like vast space, and nothing is lacking and nothing is in excess. Everything is balanced. Only you are the problem; the world is not the problem at all.
This is the difference between a political mind and a religious mind, and you are all political minds. A political mind thinks, “I am absolutely okay, everything else is wrong.” So he starts to change the world – a Lenin, a Gandhi, a Hitler, a Mao.
The political mind thinks, “Everything is wrong. If everything is settled then it will be beautiful.”
A religious mind thinks, “Only I am not settled. Otherwise, everything is as perfect as it can be.”
Perfect is the way like vast space: …nothing is lacking and nothing is in excess. Everything is as it should be, absolutely balanced. Only you are wavering, only you don’t know where to go, only you are divided. Just think: if man disappears from the earth, the world will be absolutely perfect, absolutely beautiful – there will be no problems.
Problems come with man, because man’s way of looking at things can go wrong – because man has a consciousness, and that consciousness creates trouble. Because you can be conscious you can divide things. Because you can be conscious you can say, “This is right and that is wrong.” Because you can be conscious you can say, “This is ugly and that is beautiful.”
This consciousness is not enough. If it becomes more, if it becomes a circle, perfect consciousness, then again everything is settled.
Nietzsche has said – and he has many insights to reveal – he has said that man is a bridge, he is not a being. He is a bridge, something to go beyond. You cannot make a house on the bridge. That’s what Jesus says: “Go through it. Don’t make a house on it, it is just a bridge.” Nietzsche’s sentence is: “Man is just a bridge between two eternities, the eternity of nature and the eternity of God.”
Everything is okay in nature, everything is okay in God. Man is a bridge, he is just in the middle, half nature, half God – that is the trouble. Divided, the past belongs to nature, the future belongs to God. Tense, like a rope stretched between two eternities, sometimes moving toward nature, sometimes moving toward God, sometimes this way, sometimes that way; a constant trembling and wavering, unsettled.
Become settled, and either way will do. Chuang Tzu is in favor of being settled again in nature. If you settle in nature you become like gods, you become gods. Buddha is in favor of moving ahead and becoming godliness, then you will be settled. Either go back or go to the very end, but don’t stay on the bridge.
And this is the thing to be understood – one of the very significant things, one of the foundations – that whether you go back or you go ahead, you reach the same goal. The question is not of backward or forward, the question is not to be on the bridge.
Lao Tzu, Chuang Tzu, they say to fall back into nature, Tao. Shankara, Buddha, Jesus, they say to go ahead, pass through the bridge, reach the divine. This will look very paradoxical, but it is not – because both banks are the same, because this bridge is a circle.
Whether you go back or you go forward you reach the same goal, the same point of being at ease, whatsoever you choose. If you feel that let-go is impossible for you, then follow Patanjali: effort, will, striving, seeking. Then you will move forward. If you feel that you can understand the law of reverse effect, not only understand, but let it happen within you, then follow Sosan, Chuang Tzu: fall back. But don’t remain where you are; you will be divided on the bridge. You cannot be at ease there, you cannot make your home there. The bridge is not a place to make a home. It is not a goal, it is just something to be passed.
Nietzsche says man is something to be transcended, man is not a being. Animals have being, God has being, man has no being yet. He is just a transition, a transitory stage, a passing from one perfection to another. In between, he is divided.
Sosan says fall back, and if you ask me I will say Sosan is easier than Patanjali. The same will happen in the end. Much effort will bring you to effortlessness, no-effort also will bring you to effortlessness – because effort can never be the goal, effort can only be the means. You cannot go on making effort forever and forever. You make effort to reach a state of effortlessness.
With Patanjali, effort is the path, effortlessness is the goal; effort is the means, effortlessness is the end. With Sosan effortlessness is the means, effortlessness is the goal. With Sosan the first step is the last step; with Sosan there is no distinction between means and goals. But with Patanjali there is – you have to make many steps.
So with Patanjali the enlightenment will be gradual. With Sosan the enlightenment can be instantaneous, in this very moment – it can be sudden. If you can understand Sosan then there is nothing more beautiful than that. But if you cannot understand, then Patanjali is the only way.
The way is perfect, like vast space where nothing is lacking and nothing is in excess. Indeed, it is due to our choosing to accept or reject that we do not see the true nature of things. Because we accept or reject, that’s why we cannot see the true nature. Then you bring your ideas, opinions, prejudices, and then you color everything. Otherwise everything is perfect. You have just to look. Pure… A look without any ideas, a look without any rejection. Acceptance… A pure look, as if your eyes don’t have a mind behind them, as if your eyes are just mirrors: they don’t say, “Beautiful. Ugly.” A mirror simply mirrors whosoever comes before it, it has no judgment.
If your eyes have no mind behind them, they just mirror. They simply look. They don’t say, “This is good and that is bad” – they don’t condemn, they don’t appreciate. Then everything is as clear as it can be, nothing is to be done. This clarity, these eyes without opinions and prejudices – and you have become enlightened.
Then there is no problem to be solved. Then life is no longer a riddle. It is a mystery to be lived, enjoyed, a dance to be danced. Then you are not in any conflict with it, then you are not doing anything here. Then you are simply enjoying, then you are blissful.
This is what heaven means: where you are not expected to do anything, where you don’t try to earn bliss – where bliss is natural, where it showers on you. This can happen here and now. It has happened to Sosan, it has happened to me, it can happen to you. If it can happen to one, it can happen to all.
Live neither in the entanglements of outer things,
nor in inner feelings of emptiness.
Be serene, without striving activity in the oneness of things
and such erroneous views will disappear by themselves.
Don’t divide the outer from the inner. Sosan says, “Don’t say, ‘I am interested in the outer.’” There are two types of people, and both will be in misery. C. G. Jung divides humanity into two types: one he calls extroverts, the other he calls introverts. Extroverts are interested in the outer. They are active people, worldly – after wealth, prestige, position, power. They become politicians, they become social reformers, they become great leaders, great industrialists. They are interested in things, the outer world; they are not interested in themselves.
Then there are introverts. They are not very active people. If they have to do something they will do, otherwise they have no inclination to do. They would like to remain with closed eyes. They become poets, mystics, meditators, contemplatives. They are not interested in the world, they are interested only in themselves; they close their eyes and they introvert their energies. But Sosan says these both are wrong because they are divided.
A person who is an extrovert will always feel inside that something is lacking. He may become a very powerful man: deep inside he will feel he is impotent, powerless. Outwardly he may accumulate much wealth, inwardly he will feel poor. He may be a great success in the world; deep down, if you inquire, he knows he has been a failure. He is imbalanced, he has paid too much attention to the outer. He has moved in one extreme, and whenever there is extreme there is imbalance.
And the person who has been the poet, a contemplative, a mystic, who has always remained within himself, will always feel something is lacking because he is not rich in the outer world. And the outer world is also beautiful: flowers are there, and stars, and the sun rises there, and rivers flow and waterfalls sing. He is poor because he has been denying the whole universe; unnecessarily, he has lived in his own cave when he could have moved and known the many mysteries, the million mysteries around. He has remained a closed man, enclosed in himself, imprisoned. These two are the extremes.
Avoid extremes. Don’t make a distinction between outer and inner, and don’t become one of Jung’s types, either extrovert or introvert.
Sosan says: Be flowing, balancing. Outer and inner are just like the right and left leg. Why choose one? If you choose one, all movement stops. They are like two eyes: if you choose one then you will be able to see, but your vision is not three dimensional anymore, the depth is lost. You have two ears: you can use one, you can be addicted to the idea that you are a left ear type or a right ear type, but then you lose. Then half the world is closed to you.
The inner and outer are just like two eyes, two ears, two legs – why choose? Why not use both choicelessly? And why divide? – because you are one! The left leg and the right leg only appear to be two. You flow within both – the same energy, the same being. You look through both your eyes. Why not use inner and outer and give them a balance? Why move to the extreme?
Remember, not only have people moved to the extreme, societies have also moved to the extreme. The East has remained introvert, hence the poverty. Who is responsible for it? Millions of men, dying every day. And those who are alive, they are also not alive – they are half starved. Who is responsible for this? – the introverts, the mystics, the poets, who talked too much of the inner and who condemned the outer, who said, “Outside is not for us”; who said, “Outside is wrong”; who said, “The outer world is something to be condemned. Live in the inner.” They raised the inner higher than the outer and the balance was lost.
The East has created introverts, but the outer beauty is lost. You see dirtiness all over in the East. I know how difficult it is for a Western man to come and live in the dirtiness of India. It is dirty – who is responsible? Why so much dirtiness? Why so much disease? Why so much ill health, starvation? – because the outer was neglected.
We were interested in purifying the inner, so: “Why bother about the outer dirtiness? Let it be. It is material, nothing to worry about. We are interested in the inner purity. Why bother about the body? Why bother about others?”
The result is that the East is one sort of imbalance. And the West is another sort: they are extroverts. They have created much wealth never created before, much cleanliness outside, better clothes – emperors may feel envious – better food, better hygienic conditions, beautiful surroundings, everything, but extrovert. And the inner being is poor, the inner being is empty.
So the East goes on teaching the West about the inner being. Eastern gurus go on teaching the West how to meditate, and Western gurus go on teaching the East how to be better engineers, how to be better electricians, how to be better city planners, how to create more wealth, how to advance technologically, how to raise the standard of living. So if you have to learn medicine you have to go to the West; if you have to learn meditation you have to come to the East.
But both are extremes and both are dangerous. Extremes are always dangerous. And the danger is that the wheel can turn, and the East can become materialist and the West can become spiritualist. There is every possibility that this is going to happen, because now the East is turning communist – that is the extreme of materialism – and the West is becoming too much spiritualist. The danger is there: the wheel may turn, because you are fed up with the outside world you want to move inside, you need an inner trip.
You may go on the inner trip. Look at the hippies; they are the future of the West. They are against technology – the same type, the introvert type that has devastated the whole East, that has been catastrophic to the East. They are against technology, they are against outside cleanliness. You cannot find more dirty people than hippies; they will not take a bath, they will not change their clothes. They say these are outside things, they are on the inner trip. They are interested in meditation, but they are not interested in sanitation. No! The same foolishness, the same extreme, the same opposite. It is appealing, because when you have lived on one extreme the mind says, “Now move to the other because this has not been fulfilling. This extreme has failed, so move to the opposite.” But remember, it is easy to move from one extreme to another, but extremes never fulfill. Look at the East: the inner extreme has also not been a fulfillment, it has also been a failure. It is not a question of outer and inner, it is a question of balance. Balance succeeds, imbalance fails.
And outer and inner are not two. Where does outer end and inner start? Can you demark, can you make a boundary? Can you say, “Here the outer ends and the inner starts?” Where? They are not divided. Those divisions are of the mind. Inner and outer are one: the outer is just the inner extended, the inner is just the outer penetrating. They are one – two hands, two legs, two eyes of one being.
Is the outer, outside of existence? It cannot be, because nothing can be outer to existence, nothing can be out of it. The whole must include the outer and the whole must include the inner. For the whole there is nothing like outer and nothing like inner. This is what Sosan says. He says: Live neither in the entanglements of outer things, nor in inner feelings of emptiness. Be serene without striving activity in the oneness of things and such erroneous views will disappear by themselves.
People come to me – and mind is so cunning – they come to me and they say, “We would like to take sannyas but we want inner sannyas, not outer. We will not change clothes.” And they say, “Why outer? Let it be just inner!” They don’t know what they are saying. Where does the inner start?
When you eat food you never say, “Let it be inner.” When you are thirsty and you drink water, you never say, “Let it be inner. Thirst is inner, so why take outer water?” But where does the water end and where does the thirst start? – because if you take water the thirst disappears, so it means there is a meeting. Somewhere the outer water meets the inner thirst, otherwise how can it disappear?
You feel hungry and you take food. Food is outer, hunger is inner; for inner hunger why take outer food? Why be foolish? Take something inner. But there is no inner food. Hunger is inner, food is outer, but somewhere the food goes in. It changes territory: it becomes your blood, it becomes your bones. It becomes the very stuff your mind is made of, it becomes your thinking.
Food becomes your thought. And if food becomes your thought, remember, food will also become your no-thought. Food becomes your mind, food becomes your meditation. Without mind can you meditate? Without mind how will you become no-mind? Without thinking how will you drop thinking? Mind is very subtle food, no-mind is the subtlest food – but there is no division.
So when you want to take sannyas, even the color transcends territory. It starts from the outer and by and by penetrates into the deeper. It colors your very being; even the clothing touches your soul. It has to be so because outer and inner are not two, they are one. A simple gesture – it looks outer, goes to the very being, and it comes from there. Remember, don’t play games and don’t divide existence. It is undivided.
When you love a person you would like to hug the body. You will not say, “I love you, but I love you in the inner.” There was a fat girl here, very very fat. She told me, “I have got only one boyfriend and he also says, ‘I love only your spirit, not your body.’”
She felt very hurt, because when you say to a person, “I only love your soul, not your body,” what does it mean? When you love a person you love totally, you cannot make divisions. This is a cunning trick. That boy does not really love the girl, he is playing a game. He wants to say, “I don’t love,” but he cannot say that.
If you don’t want to take sannyas, don’t take it! But don’t play games, don’t be cunning, don’t try to be clever. Don’t say, “This is outer and I would like something inner.”
In existence, the outer meets the inner, the inner meets the outer; they are two wings of one being. And no bird can fly with one wing, and no being can grow with one wing – you need both. This world needs godliness as much as godliness needs this world. This world cannot exist without godliness; godliness also cannot exist without this world.
I love one rabbi – his name is Baal Shem, a Jewish mystic, one of the few enlightened Jews. He used to say in every prayer, “Remember, as much as I need you, you also need me. Without Baal Shem, where will you be?” He used to say to God, “I need you, you also need me. Without Baal Shem, where will you be? Who will pray?”
Remember that. He knows something, he is right. The inner needs the outer, because the outer is nothing but the inner extended. The outer needs the inner, because the inner is nothing but the center of the periphery.
Can there be a center without a periphery? Can there be a periphery without a center? It is impossible. How can you have a center without a circumference? If you have a center, if you call it a center, that very moment a circumference comes in. How can you have a circumference if there is no center? It may not be visible but it is there, otherwise the circumference cannot be there. Then, if you look rightly and deeply, the circumference is nothing but the center extended, and the center is nothing but the circumference in seed, condensed, concentrated, in essence.
Live neither in the entanglements of outer things,
nor in inner feelings of emptiness.
Be serene without striving for activity in the oneness of things
and such erroneous views will disappear by themselves.
When you try to stop activity to achieve passivity
your very effort fills you with activity.
This is the law of reverse effect.
When you try to stop activity to achieve passivity
your very effort fills you with activity.
As long as you remain in one extreme or the other
you will never know oneness.
Those who do not live in the single way
fail in both activity and passivity,
assertion and denial.
Don’t try to be passive because effort belongs to activity. Nobody can try to be passive. Then what to do? – be totally active, and then passivity comes. It follows like a shadow, it has to come. Think perfectly and then no-thinking comes. You cannot drop thinking. Nothing can be dropped which is incomplete, only the perfect can be dropped. In fact, the perfect drops itself automatically.
Be active. The activity itself creates the situation in which passivity happens. If you have been active the whole day, totally active whatsoever you were doing – digging a hole in the garden or working in a factory or in a shop or teaching in a school. Whatsoever you are doing, do it totally, and when the evening comes and the sun sets you will have a passivity descending upon you. That passivity is beautiful, it is as beautiful as activity. Nothing to choose! Both are beautiful and both are needed.
Don’t try to be passive. How can you try to be passive? You can sit like a buddha, but that passivity will just be skin deep. Deep down you will be in a turmoil, you will be boiling, a volcano – you can erupt at any moment. You can force the body to sit silently – how will you force the being? The being goes on and on and on. That’s why you cannot stop thinking. People sit in zazen for years, twenty years, twenty-five years, sitting for six hours, continuously just trying to make the mind silent, and it goes on working, goes on working, goes on working.
Hence my emphasis on active meditations. That’s a balance. First, be active so totally that passivity follows automatically. When you have been active and the whole energy has moved, you would like to rest. If you have not been active, how can rest follow?
Logic will say something absolutely different. Logic will say, “Practice rest the whole day, so in the night you can rest beautifully.”

Mulla Nasruddin went to his doctor. Coughing, he entered. The doctor said, “Still coughing? But it seems better.”
Nasruddin said, “It has to, because the whole night I practiced it.”

If the whole day you practice rest, don’t expect any sleep in the night. Practicing rest will not bring more rest; practicing rest will bring activity. Then lying on your bed you will think, and move from this side to that. You will be doing exercises the whole night. And if you force your body then the mind will have to substitute, then the mind will go on in nightmares.
No, a wise man balances, and he knows life balances itself. If you do one – but totally, so nothing is left, the whole energy has enjoyed activity – then rest is automatic, then rest follows. And when you enjoy rest then activity follows, because when you rest you gain energy, you become rejuvenated. Then the whole body is filled, flooded with energy. Now, again you have to share it, and in activity you have to release it. Again you will be filled.
It is just like clouds: they have to rain, again they will be filled – the ocean is there to fill them. They have to rain, again they will be filled. The river has to pour itself into the ocean, it will be filled again. The more it pours, the more it will be filled.
Sosan says: Be active totally, then you will be able to be passive totally. Then both the extremes meet and a subtle balance is achieved. That subtle balance is samyaktva, that subtle balance is tranquility. That subtle balance is the highest peace possible, the peak, the climax, the crescendo, because when two things balance – outer and inner, activity and passivity – suddenly you transcend them both. When they both balance you are no longer this, no longer that. Suddenly you are a third force – the onlooker, the witness. But you cannot strive for it.
When you try to stop activity to achieve passivity your very effort fills you with activity. As long as you remain in one extreme or the other you will never know oneness. Transcend extremes. Don’t be a worldly man and don’t be a so-called spiritual man. Don’t be a theist, don’t be an atheist. Don’t be mad for outer wealth and don’t be obsessed with inner tranquility. Balance – balance should be the motto.
Those who do not live in the single way fail in both activity and passivity, assertion and denial. And this is the result: those who choose extremes fail in both, because if you go on being active and active and active, and no passivity is allowed, from where are you going to revitalize yourself? You will become an empty shell, impotent, powerless, poor.
That happens to so-called successful people in the world: politicians, presidents, prime ministers. By the time they have achieved, they have lost everything. They are no longer there. Success is there, but in the bargain they have sold themselves, they are no longer there. And the same happens to those who choose the inner, the introverts: by the time they reach inside, they find only turmoil all around.
If you choose the extreme, you will fail in both. If you don’t choose, you will succeed in both. Balance succeeds, extremes fail. This balance is called by Buddha the middle path, majjhim nikaya; by Confucius, “the golden mean.”
Just be in the middle. This is the greatest skill and art, just to be in the middle, not choosing, not moving left, not moving right. Don’t be a leftist and don’t be a rightist – just be exactly in the middle.
If you are exactly in the middle you transcend the world. Then you are no longer a man, no longer a woman. That’s what Jesus says. Then you are no longer a materialist, no longer a spiritualist. Then no longer are you alive, no longer will you be dead.
Neither this nor that – the bridge is passed over. You have reached the goal. And the goal is not somewhere in the future, it is here between two extremes. Neither hate nor love.
Always remember, wherever you find two extremes, don’t choose. Just try to find a balance in between. It will be difficult in the beginning just because of the old habit.
It happened…

Mulla Nasruddin was ill and he was hospitalized. After just a few minutes somebody knocked on the door and a snappy little woman entered.
She said, “I am your doctor. Undress, I have come to examine you.”
Mulla asked, “Do you mean completely?”
The doctor said, “Yes, that’s what I mean.”
So he undressed. The woman checked, examined him. Then she said, “Now you can get into bed. Do you have any questions?”
Mulla Nasruddin said, “Only one: why did you bother to knock?”
The woman said, “Just old habit.”

Even in your gestures, old habits persist. Habits are easy to follow because you need not be aware – they go on, on their own. Awareness is difficult because it has never been a habit for you.
You choose easily: you condemn, appreciate easily; you reject, accept easily. You say, “This is good, that is wrong” easily, because this has become a habit: for millions of lives, you have always been choosing. This is just a robot-like phenomenon.
Without any awareness, the moment you see something, you have decided and judged. A flower is there: you look and you say, “Beautiful,” or, “Not beautiful.” Immediate judgment comes; with the perception, judgment comes. Then you will never be able to remain in the middle.

Somebody came to Chuang Tzu and he talked about a man in town and said, “He is a sinner, a very bad man, a thief,” and condemned him in many, many ways.
Chuang Tzu listened and said, “But he plays the flute beautifully.”
Then came another man, and the first was sitting there, and the other said, “This man in the town is really a beautiful flute player.”
Chuang Tzu said, “But he is a thief.”
Both were present, so they said, “What do you mean?”
Chuang Tzu said, “Just balancing. And who am I to judge? – he is a thief, he is a good flute player. For me there is no rejection, no acceptance. For me there is no choice. He is whatsoever he is. Who am I to judge or choose this extreme or that? For me he is neither good nor bad. He is himself and that is his business. Who am I here to say anything? I had to say something just to balance you both.”

It is difficult not to choose, but try, and in everything. When you feel hate, try to move to the middle. When you feel love, try to move to the middle. Whatsoever you feel, try to move to the middle. And you will be surprised that there is a point between every two extremes where both cease to exist – when neither do you feel hate nor do you feel love. This is what Buddha called upeksha, indifference.
Indifference is not the right word: upeksha means such a middle point from where you are neither this nor that. You cannot say, “I love,” you cannot say, “I hate.” You simply cannot say anything, you are simply in the middle. You are not identified. A transcendence happens, and transcendence is the flowering. That is the maturity to be attained, that is the goal.
Enough for today.

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