The Diamond Sutra 10

Tenth Discourse from the series of 11 discourses - The Diamond Sutra by Osho.
You can listen, download or read all of these discourses on oshoworld.com.

The first question:
Even in my relationship with you, words become less important all the time. Why should a buddha and a bodhisattva need to talk at all?
What are you talking about, what talk? It never happened. Nobody has said anything and nobody has heard anything. The Diamond Sutra has no sutras in it, Mahasattva, that’s why it is called The Diamond Sutra. It is an utter emptiness. If you get caught in the words you will miss the message. The Diamond Sutra is absolutely empty, there is no message in it. There is nothing to read and nothing to hear. It is utter silence.
If you read something in The Diamond Sutra you have missed it. If you find some doctrine in it, some philosophy in it, then you must be imagining, it must be your dream. Buddha has not said anything, neither has Subhuti heard anything. In that non-talking and non-hearing, something has happened – something which is beyond words. Ananda has tried to capture that for you in words, but it was not delivered in words. It was a communion between two emptinesses.
You just go to the sea and you see the morning, and the fresh air and the sunrays and the waves, and you come home and you relate to somebody what you have seen. Then you relate only words. The word sea is not the sea and the word sun is not the sun and the word freshness is not freshness. How do you commune? You have come back from the beach and your beloved asks, “What happened?” You bring all that has happened into words, knowing perfectly well that it cannot be brought into words, it cannot be reduced into words. Words are so pale.
Something has certainly happened between Buddha and Subhuti, something which is transcendental. Maybe they had just looked into each other’s eyes. Something was triggered in the consciousness of Subhuti by Buddha’s presence. Ananda is trying to report it for you. You are blind. You cannot see light, you can only hear the word light.
So remember: The Diamond Sutra is not a sutra at all, that’s why it is called The Diamond Sutra, the most precious, because it contains no philosophy, no system, no theory. It contains no words, it is an empty book.
If you can forget the words and you can go deeper into the gaps between the words, if you can forget the lines and can go deeper between the lines, in the intervals, in the pauses, then you will find what has happened. It is not a verbal communication.
I am also talking to you, but still I would like to remind you to remember that my message is not in my words. You will have to step upon the words to get it. Use the words as a staircase, as stepping stones. Remember, stepping stones can become hindrances if you don’t know how to step over them.
You have to listen in silence to silence.
Mahasattva, Buddha has not said a single word, neither has Subhuti heard a single word. It is the compassion of Ananda to make a few maps for you. Those maps are not the countries. If you have a map of India, that map is not India, it cannot be. How can it be? But it can be of some limited help to you; it can lead you to the real India. It is like the arrow on the milestone by the side of the road, it points towards something.
This whole Diamond Sutra points towards silence. Hence so many contradictions in it, because only through contradictions can silence be created. Each word has to be contradicted by its opposite immediately it is uttered so that they destroy each other and in the wake, silence is felt.

The second question:
The deeper I fall into myself, the more alone I feel. There is only nothingness. And sometimes, looking into your eyes, I get the same feeling of a vast emptiness. If it is natural – if being alone is basic, the very essence of my being – then how could the illusive idea of becoming one, of falling in love with somebody eternally, come into being in the first place? And why is it so painful to become aware that it is an illusion? Please clear my doubts.
You are the doubter and you are the doubt. There is no other doubt. First, when you say, “The deeper I fall into myself, the more alone I feel,” if you have really been falling deeper you will feel aloneness but you will not feel “I am alone,” because then there are two things, I and aloneness. Then you are not alone. Then there is the experiencer and the experienced, the observer and the observed. Then you are not alone, the other is there – the experience is the other.
When you really fall deep into yourself, you will not find yourself; that is the whole thing to understand. It is only on the surface that the waves exist. If you go deeper into the ocean you will not find waves…or can you? How can you find waves in the depth? They exist only on the surface, they can exist only on the surface. They need winds to exist.
The “I” can exist only on the surface because it needs “thou,” the wind of the “thou,” to exist. When you go deeper into yourself the winds are no longer there, “thous” are no longer there. How can there be “I”? I and thou exist in a pair, they are never divorced. Yes, you will find aloneness, but not I-ness. And aloneness is beautiful. Let me remind you again, the word alone means all one. That’s how it is constructed – all one. On the surface you are separate from all. In fact, on the surface you are lonely because you are separate from the all. In the depth, when you have disappeared, there is no distinction between you and all. All is one; you are no longer, aloneness is.
You say, “The deeper I fall into myself, the more alone I feel.” You must be imagining that you are falling deeper into yourself. The mind can go on playing games. It can play the game of being alone, it can play the game of being in prayer, it can play the game of being in meditation, but if “I” remains then you can be certain it is a game, nothing real has happened. That’s why again the desire for the other will arise.
The “I” cannot exist alone. It needs the other to support it, to feed it, to nourish it. It will bring you back to the other. That’s why when you are lonely you start thinking of your beloved, of your friend, of your mother, father, this and that, a thousand and one things. You create imaginary “thous.” If a man is put in isolation for more than three weeks he starts talking to himself. He creates the whole dialogue. He himself is divided in two – I and thou. He becomes two so the game can be played. “I” cannot exist separate from “thou.”
“The deeper I fall into myself, the more alone I feel.”
No, you must be feeling lonely. Never use these two words as synonymous. Loneliness is negative, aloneness is positive. Loneliness simply means you are missing the other. The other is absent, there is a gap in you. Aloneness means you are present, there is no gap in you. You are full of presence, you are utterly there. Loneliness is the absence of the other, aloneness is the presence of your eternal being.
You say: “There is only nothingness.” No, if there is only nothingness then there is no problem. If there is only nothingness and nobody to know it, nobody to feel it, then there is no problem. Then from where comes the doubt? How can the doubter arise? No, you are there. That nothingness is bogus because you are there. How can it be nothingness? It is just your idea.
This used to happen in my family when I was a child. I was so lazy – I am still – I was so lazy, utterly lazy, that my family lost all hope with me. By and by they started forgetting about me, because I would never do anything. I would sit in the corner and just sit, either with closed eyes or with open eyes, but I was so absent to them that by and by they became oblivious to me.
Sometimes it would happen that my mother would need something from the market, vegetables or something, and I would be sitting in front of her and she would say, “Nobody seems to be present here.” She was just sitting in front of me and talking to me: “Nobody seems to be here. I want somebody to go and fetch vegetables from the market.” And I was sitting in front of her and she said, “Nobody is here.”
I was counted as nobody. Even if a stray dog would enter in the house I would allow it. I was sitting at the gate and the dog would enter and I would watch. And my mother would come rushing out and she would say, “Nobody is here to prevent this dog” – and I was sitting there!
By and by they had accepted that I was as if not. But that does not make much difference; I was there. I had seen the dog coming, I was hearing their words. I knew I could manage to go to the marketplace and fetch vegetables for her. And I would laugh at the whole idea – that she went on saying that nobody was there.
That’s what is happening to you. You are there, and you say nothingness is. You are oblivious of yourself, you don’t take note of yourself, otherwise you are there. If you are not there, who is saying that nothingness is? Then there is nothingness when you are not there, then there is pure nothingness. In that purity is nirvana, enlightenment. That is the most valuable place to be, the most spacious place to be. It is the space everybody is searching for, because it is unlimited, infinite, and its purity is absolute. It is not polluted by anything; even you are not there. There is light and there is consciousness, but there is no “I.” “I” is like ice, frozen consciousness. Consciousness is like melted ice, liquid, or, even better, even the water has evaporated, has become invisible.
And you say: “And why is it so painful to become aware that it is an illusion?” – the other. It is painful because the “I” starts dying. To recognize the other as the illusion, to recognize love as illusion is very hard, because then the “I” starts dying. If you drop the “you,” the “I” cannot exist. And you don’t know the beauty of dropping the “I.”
And you ask: “If it is natural – if being alone is basic, the very essence of my being – then how could the illusive idea of becoming one, of falling in love with somebody eternally, come into being in the first place?”
It came only because of that – because aloneness is basic, essential. The Hindu scriptures say that God was alone. Just think, just visualize God alone and alone and alone for eternity. He became fed up with his aloneness, it was monotonous. He wanted to have a little play. He created the other and started playing hide-and-seek.
When you are tired of the play, when you become fed up with the play, you become a buddha again. You again drop your toys. They are created by you, the value is imagined by you; you have put the value on them. The moment you withdraw your value they disappear, you are again alone.
The Hindu concept is tremendously valuable, significant. It says God was alone, it became monotonous, and he created the world, the other, just to have a little chitchat with the other, to have a little dialogue. Then again and again one comes and feels tired and bored with the other, disappears into oneself, again reaches to one’s nothingness and becomes a god.
You are all gods who are deceiving themselves. It is your choice. The day you choose not to be this way you will be free. It is your dream. Because of aloneness, because aloneness is the essential quality of your being, the other has been created.
You just try it: go for a few weeks to the mountains and sit alone and you will feel very good. Everybody is tired of relationship and fed up and bored. Go to the mountains and sit silently and you will feel so beautiful, but after three or four days, five days, seven days, three weeks, you will start thinking of the other. Your woman again starts being attractive to you. You forget all the nastiness and all the nagging. You forget all that she has been doing to you, you completely forget all. She is again beautiful, she is again lovely, she is again fantastic, mm? – you put value again.
Then you have to come down from the mountains to the plains, and for two or three days with the woman things are going beautifully – a new honeymoon – and after two or three days things become difficult again, and again you start thinking how to meditate, how to be silent. This is how you go on. Just watch your consciousness and its fluctuations and through it you will know the whole process of existence, because you are a miniature existence.
The pendulum of consciousness goes on swinging between meditation and love, between aloneness and togetherness. And because all the religions of the world up to now have been either of love or of meditation they were fragmentary, they were not total. I am giving you the total religion. I am not choosing.
For example, Buddha had chosen meditation. He gives you the love for meditation, no other love. He teaches you only to be alone, absolutely alone and nothing else. It is good, it is tremendously good for people who are tired and fed up with the world. He was tired and fed up with the world. He was a king, he was not a beggar. He was tired of women. His father had brought all the beautiful girls from the kingdom for him. He had one of the most beautiful harems. If you get all the beautiful women of the world in your house, how long will you be able to live there? Just think of it: one is more than enough. Now all the beautiful women of the kingdom were there. It must have been maddening. If he escaped, it is no wonder. All the pleasures were arranged for him, every kind of pleasure was arranged for him. If he became fed up, it is no wonder. He moved to the other pole. The other was too much. He escaped into the jungle, he became alone.
There are religions which are religions of meditation – Buddhism, Jainism. There are religions which are of love – Christianity, Mohammedanism. And this has to be understood. Jesus is a poor man, so is Mohammed. This can’t be accidental. Mahavira is a king, so is Buddha. The two kings have given to the world the religion of meditation, and the two poor people have given the religion of love to the world.
The poor cannot be fed up with the other. The poor man has not had that much of the other; the poor hankers for the other. The other may be the woman or money or power or prestige or God; it makes no difference – the other is needed.
Christianity and Islam are both religions of prayer, love – love for God, prayer for God. In Buddhism, in Jainism, there is no place for God at all because there is no place for the other. Aloneness is enough. In Jainism and in Buddhism there is no existence of anything like prayer, the word has not been heard; they know only of meditation. Christianity knows nothing of meditation. These are not accidental things, they show something about the founders.
I am giving you a total religion, a religion which allows both. When you are feeling tired with the other, move into meditation, swing into meditation. When you are feeling tired of aloneness, swing into love. Both are good. Both are contradictory, but through contradiction great joy arises. If you have only one you will not have that kind of richness. The one can give you silence or can give you great joy, but both can give you something infinitely precious, incomparable. Both together, they can give you a silent ecstasy, a peaceful joy. At the innermost core you remain utterly silent, and on the periphery, the dance. And when silence dances or silence sings, that is the richest, the peakest of peaks. Hence my insistence for both.

Once George Bernard Shaw was sitting alone at the edge of the room at a party. His hostess came over to him and inquired solicitously, “Aren’t you enjoying yourself?”
Shaw replied, “That’s all I am enjoying.”

He has hit upon a great truth, a great insight is there: one’s self is all anyone can enjoy. Life starts taking the quality of silence. But if you can enjoy only yourself and never the other then you will miss the other dimension. One should be capable of enjoying oneself and the other too. That’s what I call the whole man, the holy man.

The third question:
When I hear your discourses and at other times, I know that I know all that is needed to be enlightened. At those times am I enlightened? Please comment on how this obviously superficial “knowing” can penetrate and become beingness. It seems that this knowing is robbing me of innocence and more complete experiential realization, that knowledge has far outpaced the growth of my being, and yet, knowing there is no such thing as my being, I don't feel wholly motivated towards growing one.
The first thing: you say, “When I hear your discourses and at other times, I know that I know all that is needed to be enlightened.” Nothing is needed to be enlightened, so how can you know all that is needed to be enlightened? Nothing is needed to be enlightened. Enlightenment is your natural state; it is not something that has to be produced, manufactured, created. If you are manufacturing something new, then many things will be needed. If you are not manufacturing anything new, what is needed? You are enlightened. How can anything be needed? Nothing is needed.
So your idea that you think “I know that I know all that is needed to be enlightened” is barring your way. Nothing is needed to be enlightened, and nothing is needed to be known to be enlightened. Enlightenment is already there, is already the case. It is not a realization, it is only a recognition. It is not that you have to make efforts to bring it; all that you need is not to make any effort. Drop all efforts – and suddenly it is there. You cannot see it because you are continuously making efforts to see it. Your very effort to see it is functioning as a barrier.
And you say: “At those times am I enlightened?” You are enlightened all the time, not when you hear me, not when you read something from The Diamond Sutra – not only in those moments. You are all the time enlightened. From the very beginning to the very end, you remain enlightened. You can go on deceiving yourself that you are not enlightened as long as you want, but all the same you are enlightened.
It is like a man who is pretending to be a woman in a drama. He is all the time a man. He can go on pretending, sometimes even he may forget. If he is a good actor, a really good actor, he may get into the idea and forget about it. For a few moments he may think that he is a woman, but again and again he will know that he is a man.
It is a miracle that you forget that you are enlightened, that you go on forgetting it, but you are enlightened. Remember, enlightenment is not a quality that is going to happen to you in some future. You have brought it from the very beginning. It is in your breathing, it is in your heartbeat. It is the stuff you are made of.
“At those times am I enlightened?” No, if you think that sometimes you are enlightened and sometimes not, then you are not enlightened. The day you know, the moment you know you are always enlightened, then you are enlightened. Once you have felt enlightenment, it is always there surrounding you like an aroma.
Still you can go on playing a thousand and one games. I am playing, Buddha is playing, but that doesn’t make any difference. Then it is with full awareness that the game is played. It does not entangle, it does not imprison.
Once you play a game knowing that it is a game, then there is no problem. Then you can be in the world, then you can be whatsoever you enjoy to be, but deep down you know you are not that. Deep down you remain far away. You become a lotus flower – in the water and yet the water touches you not.
“At those times am I enlightened?” you ask. “Please comment on how this obviously superficial knowing can penetrate and become beingness.”
Superficial knowing can never become beingness. Even deep and profound knowing can never become beingness. Knowledge itself is the obstacle. Knowing can never become being – superficial or profound. Don’t make these distinctions. These are tricks of the mind again. It is the knowledgeable mind.
The knowledgeable mind can say to you, “It is right, superficial knowledge cannot give you enlightenment, but what about profound knowledge?”
This is again a trick played upon you. Profound? Then certainly you are caught again in the same net. Profound or not profound, knowledge as such is superficial. The profoundest knowledge is superficial, to know is superficial. To be is to be in that profoundness you are talking about.
You will have to be aware. Mind is very cunning. It can accept many things and again bring them back from the back door. It can say, “Right, I perfectly agree with you. How can superficial knowledge give you enlightenment? That is not possible. I will show you the way to get profound knowledge.”
What will you do to get profound knowledge? It will be superficial knowledge again because knowledge is superficial. At the most you will have more superficial knowledge, the quantity will grow, and through the quantity you will have the illusion that you are becoming profound.
You may go into deeper details, but details don’t lead you to depth. You can know one thing about one thing or a thousand things about that one thing; it makes no difference – knowledge is about and about. It never hits the point, it never reaches the target. The target is reached only by being, and to be, knowledge has to be dropped absolutely, totally, with no conditions, with no choice that “This is good, keep it, and that is bad, drop it. This is profound, keep it, and that is not profound, drop it.” If you keep anything of knowledge, you will remain unenlightened. And the wonder of wonders is that you are enlightened and you go on remaining unenlightened.
The question is from Chipper Roth. He must be a newcomer to this place, he must be an outsider. Be here. We will take away your knowledge slowly slowly. My whole work consists of making people ignorant. Ignorance has depth, ignorance has innocence, ignorance is profound – not knowing has no limits to it. Knowing is always limited. How can it be profound? Howsoever great your knowledge, it will have a limit, a boundary to it. Only ignorance has no boundary.
They say that science is an effort to know more about less and less. If you go on and on with this approach – to know more and more about less and less – what will be the end? The end will be that you know all about nothing. That will be the logical conclusion.
I would like to say that religion is just the opposite approach: to know less and less about more and more. And what will be the ultimate result? One day…you go on knowing less and less about more and more; one day you know nothing about all. And that is the experience – to know nothing about all. That’s what I call ignorance.
Roth, please be here a little longer, hang around.

The fourth question:
I am enjoying the play very much these days. A very masterful performance this morning. Every morning I wait eagerly wondering what the curtain's rise will bring. I overflow with you but it brings laughter, not tears. Where are the tears?
Sucheta, they are in your laughter. Laughter and tears are not different. There are two types of people, the tear people and the laughter people. There are always two kinds everywhere; the whole existence is divided into duality – man and woman, yin and yang, positive/negative, day/night, life/death. So there is this division, the laughter people and the tear people.
The tear people are introverts, they are easily ingoing. And when you go in, the deeper you go in the more and more your eyes will be filled with tears. Sucheta is an extrovert, she is a laughing buddha; Geet Govind is a tearful buddha. She is an extrovert, outgoing, a real American, so when something overwhelms her she will laugh.
And remember always, never imitate anybody. If Geet Govind tries to imitate Sucheta he will be in difficulty, his laughter will be very poor and it will look phony. If Sucheta tries to imitate Geet Govind it will be very difficult to bring tears, and even if she can manage with some artificial aid they will not be true, they will be false.
Extroverts should follow their way. In their life, laughter will be their overflowing energy. Love will be easier for them, meditation will be a little difficult. For the introverts, meditation will be easier, love will be a little difficult; tears will be easier, laughter will be a little difficult.
Never imitate anybody, just go on your own way, and by and by you will see a transformation coming when you have touched the extreme. For example, if you go on laughing…for example, if Sucheta goes on laughing to the utter extreme, tears will come. There will come a moment in laughter when the laughter will start disappearing and tears will come. If Geet Govind goes on crying and crying and crying, in tears and tears and tears to the very end, suddenly he will find a change happening: laughter will arise. The revolution is only from the extreme.
Once I was talking to a council of Buddhists. Now to say to Buddhists that the revolution is from the extreme, or that truth is only at the extreme, is very difficult because they believe in the middle way, the golden mean. Buddha’s path is known as majjhim nikaya, the middle way.
I forgot that they were Buddhists. I talked about the extreme and I told them that the revolution happens only from the extreme, from the utter extreme. Unless you reach to the utter extreme there is no truth. Truth is at the extreme, this or that – but at the extreme. Either love at the extreme or meditation at the extreme.
They were patient – Buddhists are patient; they are not like Mohammedans, they will not start fighting – but still, patience has a boundary. One Buddhist could not tolerate it – although Buddha has said to tolerate. He stood up. He said, “This is too much. Have you forgotten completely that Buddha’s path is known as the middle path?”
Then I remembered and I said, “True, I know, but unless you are at the extreme middle there is no truth.” I was talking about the extreme, it had nothing to do with the middle. “If you are at the extreme middle, exactly the middle, then again, truth. Truth happens only with the extreme.”
From the extreme the pendulum swings towards the other polarity. So, good, Sucheta, laugh – laugh to the extreme. One day you will see your laughter is bringing beautiful tears.

The fifth question:
Cannot one declare that one has experienced God?
If you have experienced, your very existence will be the declaration, you need not declare. At least you need not ask. If the declaration comes it comes, what can you do? One who has experienced God will not decide anything, not even this – whether he has to declare or not. One who has experienced God has dropped the mind. Now whatsoever happens he will be into it, he will be totally into it. If declaration comes it comes.
It came to Mansoor. He declared, “Ana’l haq, I am God.” His master, Junnaid, told him, “Mansoor, this is not right. You will get into trouble. I also know, but I have never declared because you know these Mohammedans who are all around – they will kill you.”
But Mansoor said, “What can I do? When he declares what can I do? Suddenly he catches hold of me and declares.”
Junnaid was so afraid that he expelled Mansoor from his school. He said, “You go away, go somewhere else. You will get into trouble, and you will also get me into trouble.”
But Mansoor said, “What can I do? If he wants to get into trouble himself, what can I do?” And he got into trouble. But it was true that he could not do anything. He declared at the last moment also from the cross, “Ana’l haq, I am God” – and laughed.
Somebody asked from the crowd, “If you can still deny, if you can still say that you were wrong in declaring yourself God, there is still hope that you can be forgiven.”
He laughed and he said, “But what can I do? He declares.”
And you are asking me: “Cannot one declare that one has experienced God?” If God declares, good. If God is not declaring, you please keep quiet. Leave it to him.
J. Donald Walters writes:

A few years ago I met a man who was holding forth, somewhat drunkenly, and with massive self-importance, on his version of how the universe ought to be run. I forget how it came about, but I happened to mention that I thought I had met perhaps six people in my life who knew God. My companion held out a huge, hairy paw. “Shake!” he cried hoarsely. “Ya just met the seventh.”
Donald Walters writes that he could not believe that this man had experienced God, because he thinks how, if you have experienced God, will you declare so blatantly, “Shake! Ya just met the seventh.”?

But that is not my opinion. It is possible…because sometimes God is hoarse; sometimes very polite and sometimes very hoarse. God comes in all shapes and sizes. Sometimes his hands are very very smooth and sometimes very hairy. He comes in all the ways. His ways are mysterious.
So if he wants to declare through you, go to the housetops and let him declare. But if he does not want to declare and you declare on your own, you will get into trouble. If he wants to get into trouble that is his business, but don’t decide on your own, otherwise it will be just an ego trip.
Reading this story of Donald Walters, I felt very much for the man who said, “Shake! Ya just met the seventh.”
Walters writes condemningly. He thinks this is not the way. Who will decide what is the way? No one should decide. Who am I to tell you that you should not declare? If he wants to declare, who am I to tell you? Let his will be done.
But remember always, it should not be your decision. If you decide to declare, that simply means you have not known. Then the mind is playing the greatest megalomaniac trick. Then the mind is going mad.

The sixth question:
A dear friend of mine sent a letter to you from the West asking for a sannyas name and then came here before she received an answer and took sannyas here. The name she was given by letter was a totally different kind of name from the one you gave her here. I was very disturbed when I heard about this because I have always thought of my name as my path. I have used it to direct me when I have been confused. What really is the significance of the name you give to us?
All holy cow dung! Don’t be deceived by the names. You are always hankering to catch hold of something, to make something big out of nothings. The names I give you are just like lovers’ sweet nothings. Don’t make much fuss about them.
In fact, once I have given you the name, never come and ask me about its meaning again because I forget. It is in that moment that I create the meaning around it. Then how am I supposed to remember? I must have given thirty thousand names or more.
A name is just a name; you are nameless. No name confines you, no name can confine you. They are just labels to be used – utilitarian, nothing spiritual in it. But because I pay so much attention to your name and I explain it to you, you get hooked with it. That is just my way of showering my attention on you, nothing else; just my way of showing my love to you, nothing else.

The seventh question:
Why do I always fall asleep in discourse? Sometimes I can't help comparing myself to those people who sit absolutely still, just imbibing you, and that makes me feel like I have so far to go, especially every time when people come up to me after the lecture and say, “Wasn't it amazing today?” Maybe more would come through to me if I just accept that discourse is a good place for me to sleep.
It is the perfect place. Don’t be worried about those people who come and tell you, they must be joking. Sleep well. They must be trying to disturb you, they must be trying to create some jealousy in you. They must be really jealous of you – that you are sleeping so well and snoring, and those poor people are just sitting. They want to disturb you. Don’t be worried. Go on sleeping. You have to go far, but in sleep, nowhere else.

The game was drifting off into total boredom when a man in the crowd suddenly burst into a round of applause. The man next to him said, “Why did you do that?”
“Sorry,” he replied. “I was trying to keep myself awake.”

You don’t know how much difficulty people are having in keeping themselves awake. You just go into your sleep, relax into it. If you can accept it totally, that will become a great experience.
The mind always creates conflict. If you don’t sleep, the mind says, “I am feeling like it would be good if I could sleep.” If you sleep, the mind says, “You have missed something, you should not do this.” The mind always creates conflict, friction. It is never happy with anything. Drop that mind. If sleep comes naturally, then allow it. In that very acceptance and the disappearance of the mind, you will be hearing The Diamond Sutra.
Patanjali says sleep is just next to samadhi. A good sleep, a deep sleep and samadhi are different only in one sense: samadhi has awareness, sleep has no awareness. But awareness can happen in sleep. Don’t make trouble for yourself, don’t divide yourself. If sleep is not coming, perfectly good, keep awake, but then it will not be an effort. If sleep is coming then fall asleep, then don’t try to keep yourself awake. And I am not saying that if sleep is not coming you have to try to go to sleep. Accept whatsoever is the case. Accept reality as it happens in a certain moment. Be totally in the moment.
That’s my whole message, to be utterly with the moment. This is desire: “I should not be asleep.” Why? “This is not spiritual,” to sit in a discourse and fall asleep. Why? Sleep is a perfectly spiritual activity, a great spiritual activity. It is as good as sitting there and thinking; dreaming is as good. Dreaming is just a primitive form of thinking, more colorful. Others are thinking, you are dreaming. What is the difference? Dream well, sleep well, relax.
One day, out of this relaxation you will start becoming aware and alert, but that alertness will have a different quality to it. It will not be forced, it will not be manipulated by you, it will come. One day suddenly in the middle of the discourse you will open your eyes, fresh, young, from the deep sleep, and something, just a word, may go into your being and will transform you.
The whole Diamond Sutra was not needed when Hui Neng heard four lines – that was enough. Sometimes a single word from a buddha is enough; it just goes like an arrow and pierces your heart and you are no longer the same.
So don’t be worried. Relax well. And if you have relaxed well and you open your eyes, some time it is possible – there may happen the meeting between you and me. And you will be so fresh from sleep, unthinking, not knowing who you are….
Don’t you know? – sometimes it happens in the morning when you wake, it takes a few seconds for you to recognize who you are, the mind takes time to come back. Sometimes you cannot even recognize where you are. Suddenly awakened in the middle of the night, everybody will wonder who he is, where he is. He will take a little time to gather himself together.
So it is possible, sleeping, one day in the middle you hear my shouting. Suddenly you wake up and you don’t know who you are and you don’t know where you are. That is the right moment I can enter in you.
So don’t be worried, whatsoever happens is good. All is accepted here. I accept you as you are, I have no “shoulds” for you.

The last question:
Why can't people understand each other's religions? Why is there always so much conflict?
The ego. It has nothing to do with religions, just the ego. Whatsoever is yours has to be the best in the world. Whatsoever is others’ cannot be the best, cannot be allowed to be the best in the world.
Your wife is the most beautiful woman, your husband is the most beautiful person; you are the greatest man in the world. You may not say so, but you say it in a thousand and one ways. And whatsoever belongs to you has to be the best. People are just like small children. Small children go on fighting: “My daddy can lick your daddy anytime.”

A small boy was telling another boy, “My mother is a great orator. She can speak on any subject for hours.”
The other said, “That’s nothing. My mother is such a great orator she can speak without any subject for hours. Nobody knows what she is speaking about.”

People go on bragging about their things, about everything, about religion too.

Mulla Nasruddin’s son asked him, “Pop, if a Mohammedan leaves his religion and becomes a Hindu or a Christian, what would you call him?”
The Mulla became very angry and he said, “He is a traitor! He should be shot. This is the greatest sin in the world – to change your religion, to betray your religion. He is namak haram – he has betrayed his salt.”
Then the boy asked, “Then Pop, if a Hindu or a Christian becomes a Mohammedan?”
Mulla was all smiles, Jimmy Carter smiles. He said, “That is great. That man is wise. That man should be welcomed and respected and honored. He knows what truth is and he is courageous. He is a convert, my son!”

Now the thing has changed. If a Mohammedan becomes a Hindu or a Christian he is a traitor; if a Hindu or a Christian becomes a Mohammedan he is a convert and he is a great man and he should be honored and respected. He is wise, because he has recognized what is the real religion.
That’s how our egos function. That’s why religions, rather than bringing peace to the world, have been the cause of bloody wars. Many more people have been killed in the name of religion than in any other name. Not even politicians have been able to surpass the so-called religious people in murder. The greatest murderers have been the churches and the mosques and the temples.
In the future this ugliness has to be dropped; it should be immediately dropped. A religion is a personal choice. If somebody does not like the roseflower, you don’t kill him and you don’t say that he is ugly, you don’t say that he is wrong. You say that that is his liking. He does not like the roseflower, it is finished. I like the roseflower. But it is a question of liking, there is no question of truth in it, there is no question of arguing about it and there is no reason to prove why I don’t like the rose. If I don’t like, I don’t like. If you like, you like. There is no conflict. Religion should be like that.
Somebody likes Jesus – perfectly beautiful. Somebody likes Buddha, somebody likes Krishna – likings. A religion should not have anything to do with birth, it should be a pure liking. Then there will be no conflict, then there will be no unnecessary arguing which goes on and on down the centuries. Rather than praying, people have been arguing. The whole energy that they have put to argument, if it would have been put into prayer they would have known what the divine is. But they go on arguing, great debates continue, and nothing is ever proved because nothing can ever be proved.
If you like Jesus, it is just like when you fall in love with a woman. You cannot prove anything. Why?…And whatsoever you prove will look foolish to others. If you say, “Look at her nose – how long, how beautiful,” people will say, “That looks ugly, it is out of shape, it is too big, the face is not in proportion.” If you say, “Look at the eyes – so big, so beautiful,” then somebody will say, “They look frightening. I cannot stay with that woman in the night. Those two big eyes…I am scared…and they are too big and not symmetrical!”
There is no way to prove your liking. Somebody likes Jesus and somebody likes Buddha: this is falling in love – you need not prove it. And if you prove it you will look a fool to others. That’s how it looks. Hindus think people who are in love with Jesus are foolish: What is there in this man? You ask the Hindus – they have a beautiful theory of karma. They say you suffer only if you have done wrong in your past lives. Why was Jesus crucified? He must have done great sins; otherwise why? Krishna is not crucified, Rama is not crucified – why is Jesus crucified? He must have been a sinner.
Now the whole perspective changes. Now you ask a Christian about Krishna playing upon the flute – it looks so beautiful, and Jesus on the cross looks so sad – and he will say, “What are you talking about? This world is in such misery this man Krishna must have been of a very stony heart. He is playing on the flute, and people are dying and people are in misery and there is death and disease, and this man is playing on the flute? He must have a very very rocklike heart. He has no heart. If he had any heart he would have sacrificed himself for the downtrodden, for the oppressed, for those who are in misery. Look at Jesus – he is the savior. He died for us so that we can be redeemed. This Krishna looks shallow.”
But ask the Hindu who follows Krishna. He will say, “What are you talking about? There is no misery. All misery is illusion. And if people are suffering they are suffering for their sins. Nobody else can redeem them. And the only redeemer that can be of any help is one who brings joy into the world. Only joy is the healing force. How can you redeem?”
Hindus say if somebody is crying and you sit by the side and you also cry, can you redeem him? Crying is doubled. Somebody is ill and you fall ill in sympathy and lie down by their side – how are you helping? To help you have to be healthy. You need not fall ill. Krishna is healthy, Krishna is joy. The world is so in misery, that’s why he brings his flute. Everybody is carrying crosses already – what is there in carrying a cross? Everybody is carrying a cross; a flute is needed. Now these are two ways and everybody can go on arguing for and against.
To me, religion is a love affair. It has nothing to do with intellect, it has nothing to do with reason. It is falling in love. With whomsoever you have fallen in love, that is your way. Go through it – that is your door.
Love is the door, it is irrelevant with whom you have fallen in love. Love redeems – neither Jesus nor Krishna. Love redeems. Fall in love. Love is the only redeeming force. Love is the savior, but your egos….
Meditate over this beautiful story:

Patrick the First, the Irish pope, was sitting in his office in the Vatican one day reading the Catholic Herald, when a small article in the Irish section entitled “Record Births” caught his attention.
“Holy Mary, Michael!” said the pope to his secretary, Cardinal Fitz-Michael. “Do you see this, bejaisus?”
“And what is that, Monsignor?” said Michael, jumping up from his paperwork.
“It says the wife of Paddy O’Flynn from Dublin has just presented him with his fifty-sixth child,” said the pope.
“The saints be praised, sir,” said Michael. “Some miracle indeed, is it not?”
“The Lord’s work, to be sure,” cried the pope, “and should be commemorated in some way for the unity of the Catholic church, world faith in general, and the Emerald Isle in particular.”
“Indeed sir, what exactly do you have in mind?”
“No mind, Michael,” replied the pope excitedly, “action! Go this very moment to the workshop, have a golden madonna struck up, top priority job, then run around to the travel agents and book me a first class return flight to Dublin on Aer Lingus. I myself will personally take the madonna as a little gift and present it to the O’Flynns. I could do with a little holiday in the old country.”
The next morning sharp, Pope Pat, clutching the madonna, the Herald, and a bottle of Irish whiskey for the flight, boarded the plane for Dublin. On arrival he went straight to O’Flynn’s home, whereupon he was taken to the local pub by one of the family to where the main celebrations were taking place.
“Someone to see you, Dad,” yelled the kid to the roomful of drinkers.
“Tell him to grab a Guinness and come over!” a voice replied.
The pope grabbed a Guinness and pushed his way, madonna first, into the center of the high-spirited group of inebriates. Some hours and many Guinnesses later, the pope finally staggered up to Paddy and, thrusting the madonna at him, slurred, “I would like to offer my sincere congratulations to you.”
“And who do I have the honor of addressing, sir?’ said Paddy, beholding the drunken cleric, Guinness in one hand, madonna in the other.
“Well, you don’t know me personally, Paddy, but in fact I am the pope.”
“The pope!” exclaimed Paddy. “And you are in a dangerous place to be sure. Will you have another little Guinness?”
“I will indeed,” said the pope, “if you will just promise me one thing before I do.”
“For a drinking man,” said Paddy, “it will be hard to refuse.”
“I would like you to accept this madonna as a little gift from us all at the Vatican and take it and put it on the altar of your local Catholic church.”
“Ah now, sir,” said Paddy. “I will take the madonna, sir, to be sure, and very grateful I am, but put it on the altar of me local Catholic church I cannot do.”
“And why ever not,” said the pope in amazement, “as a gift to Mother Mary?”
“Well, the truth is, sir,” said Paddy, “I am not a Catholic, I am a Protestant.”
“What!” screamed the pope. “You mean to say I have come all this way to present me golden madonna to a fucking sex maniac?”

Enough for today.

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