The Ultimate Alchemy Vol 2 03

Third Discourse from the series of 12 discourses - The Ultimate Alchemy Vol 2 by Osho.
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Chidaditya swaroopam deepah.

To be established in the sun of awareness is the only lamp.
One day a lady came to Mulla Nasruddin’s school with her small son. The lady asked the Mulla to frighten the boy. He had become unruly and he would not listen to anyone. He needed to be frightened by some big authority. Of course, Mulla was a big authority in his village. Mulla took a very frightening posture, with eyes bulging, fiery, and he began to jump. The lady felt that “Now it seems impossible to stop the Mulla. He may even kill the boy!”
The lady fainted, the boy escaped, and Mulla became so frightened of himself that he had to run out of the school. He waited outside. When the lady came back he entered, slowly, solemnly, seriously. The lady said, “Mulla, it is strange. I never asked you to frighten me.”
Mulla said, “You don’t see the real fact. It was not only you that was frightened – I myself was frightened of myself. When fear takes over, it strikes all. To start it is easy, but to control it is difficult. So I was the master when I started, but soon fear took over and it became the master and I was just a slave. I couldn’t do anything. And, moreover, fear has no favorites. When it strikes, it strikes all.”

This is a beautiful parable, one which shows a very deep insight into the human mind. You are conscious in everything just in the beginning, and then the unconscious takes over. The unconscious takes charge and the unconscious becomes the master. You can start anger, but you never end it; rather, the anger ends you. You can start anything, but sooner or later the unconscious takes charge; you are relieved of your duty. So only the beginning is in your hands, never the end. And you are not the master of the consequences that follow.
This is natural because only a very small fragment of the mind is aware. It works just like the starter in your motor car. It starts, and then it is of no use; then the motor takes over. It is needed only to start. Without it, it is difficult to start. But don’t go on thinking that because you start a certain thing you are the master.
This is the secret of this parable. Because you start, you begin to feel that you are the master – because you started. You think you can stop. You could have not started, that’s another thing. But once started, soon the voluntary becomes nonvoluntary and the conscious becomes unconscious, because the conscious is just the upper layer, just the surface of the mind, and the whole mind is unconscious. You start, and the unconscious begins to move and work.
So Mulla said, “I am not responsible for what has happened. I am not responsible. I am responsible only for starting, and it is you who told me to start it. I started to frighten the boy, then the boy was frightened, then you fainted, then I was frightened, and then everything was a mess.” Everything is a mess in our life also.
This conscious starting and this unconscious taking it over every time, if you don’t feel it, if you don’t realize it, this mechanism, you will always be a slave. And the slavery becomes more convenient if you go on thinking that you are the master. It is difficult to be a slave knowing that you are a slave. It is easy to be a slave when you go on deceiving yourself that you are the master. Your love, your anger, your greed, your jealousy, your violence, your cruelty, even your sympathy, your compassion – I say “your” – are yours only in the beginning, just for a moment, just a spark. Then your mechanism is started. And your whole mechanism is unconscious.
Why is this so? Why this conflict between the conscious and the unconscious? And there is a conflict, because you cannot predict even yourself. Even you, your acts, are unpredictable to you, because you don’t know what is going to happen, you don’t know what you are going to do. The next moment what you will do even you are not aware of, because the doer is deep in darkness. You are not the doer. You are only a starting point. Unless your whole mechanism becomes conscious, you will be a problem to yourself, and a hell, and nothing but a long misery.
Only in two ways, as I have been emphasizing every day, can one become whole. Either lose this fragmentary consciousness, throw this fragment of the mind which has become conscious into the dark unconscious, dissolve it, and you are whole…. But then you are just like an animal, and that is impossible. Whatsoever you may do, it is not possible. It is only conceivable, but not possible. You will be thrown forward again and again.
That small part which has become conscious cannot now become unconscious. It is just like an egg which has become a hen: now the hen cannot move back to be an egg again. A seed which has sprouted, has begun the journey to be a tree, now cannot go back and regress and become a seed. The child which has come out of the womb of his mother now cannot go back, howsoever pleasant the womb may be, but there is no backward-going.
Life moves always in the future, never in the past. Only man can think of the past. That’s why I say it is conceivable, but it cannot be actualized. You can imagine, you can think to go back, you can believe, you can try to go back, but you cannot go. That is an impossibility.
One has to move forward. Knowingly, unknowingly, one is moving every moment. If you move knowingly, then the speed is accelerated. If you move knowingly, then you don’t waste energy and time. Then the thing can happen even in one life which will not happen in a million lives if you just move unknowingly, because if you move unknowingly you move in a circle. Every day you repeat the same, in every life you repeat again the same. And life becomes just a habit, a mechanical habit, a repetition. Knowingly if you break the repetitive habit, there is a breakthrough.
So the first thing to know towards awareness is: you are aware in such a small measure that your awareness works only as a starter. Unless you have more awareness than unawareness, more consciousness than unconsciousness, the balance will not change. And what are the hindrances? Why is this the situation? Why this facticity? Why this conflict between conscious and unconscious? We should consider it.
It is natural. Whatsoever is is natural. Man has evolved through millions of years. This evolution has created you, your body, your mechanism. This evolution has been a long struggle, millions and millions of experiences – of failures, of successes. Your body has learned much; your body has been continuously learning things. Your body knows much, and its knowledge is fixed. It goes on repeating its own ways of behaving. Even if the situation has changed, the body remains the same.
For example, when you feel anger you feel it in the same way as any primitive man, you feel it in the same way as any animal, you feel it in the same way as any child. And this is the mechanism: when you feel anger your body has a fixed routine ritual, a routine work to do. The moment your mind says “Anger!” you have glands which begin to release chemicals into the blood. Adrenaline is released into the blood. It is a necessity, because in anger you will have to strike or you may be struck by your opponent. You will need more blood circulation; this chemical will help more circulation. You may need to fight, or you may need to escape from the situation, to run away. In both cases, this chemical will help.
So when some animal is angry, the body begins to be ready to fight or to take flight. And these are the two alternatives: if the animal feels that he is stronger than the opponent, he will fight; if he feels that he is not the stronger one, he will escape. And the mechanism works very smoothly.
But for man the situation has become totally different. When you feel anger, you may not even express it. That is impossible for the animal. It depends on the situation. If it is your servant, then you may express it. If it is your master, then you may not express it. Not only that: you may even laugh, smile; you may even persuade your master, your boss, that not only are you not angry, but you are very happy. Now you are confusing the whole mechanism of the body. The body is ready to fight, and now you are smiling. You are creating a mess in the body. The body cannot understand you: “What are you doing? Are you mad? Do two things which are natural: fight or escape.”
This smiling is something new. This deception is something new. The body has no mechanism for it, so you have to force the smile without the chemicals flowing in which help to smile, which help to laugh. No chemicals to laugh…you have to force a smile, a false smile. And the body has released chemicals into the blood – now what will the body do? The body has a language that it understands very well, but you are behaving in a very mad, insane way. Now there is a gap created between you and your body.
This mechanism is unconscious, this mechanism is nonvoluntary. Your volition, your will is not needed, because will takes time and there are situations when no time can be lost. A tiger has attacked you: now there is no time for mentation. You cannot contemplate what to do. You have to act without the mind. If mind comes in you are lost. You cannot think. You cannot say to the tiger, “Wait! Let me think about it, what to do.” You have to act immediately, without any consciousness.
So the body has a mechanism. The tiger is there: the mind just knows the tiger is there – body begins to work. That working is not dependent on the mind, because mind is a very slow worker, very inefficient. It cannot be relied upon in emergency situations, so body begins to work. You will run away. You are frightened, you will escape.
But the same thing happens when you are standing on a platform to address a big audience. There is no tiger, but you are frightened by the great gathering. Fear takes shape; the body is informed. That information is automatic, that you are in fear. The body begins to release chemicals – the same chemicals it will release when a tiger attacks you. There is no tiger, there is no one who is really attacking you. But an audience is a deep attack: everyone, really, is aggressive. That’s why you have become afraid.
Now the body is ready to fight or take flight, but both the alternatives are closed. You have to stand there and speak. Now your body begins to perspire, even on a cold night. Why? Because the body is ready to run or to fight. The blood is circulating more, heat is created, and you are standing there. So you begin to perspire, and then a subtle trembling takes over. Your whole body begins to tremble.
It is just the same if you start a car and press the accelerator and the brake both, simultaneously. The engine will be heated, raced, and you are braking also. The whole body of the car will tremble. The same happens when you are standing on a platform. You feel fear. The body is ready to run, the accelerator is pushed, but you cannot run. You have to address the gathering. You are a leader or something; you cannot run. You have to face them, and you have to be there standing on the platform. You have to take the floor.
Now you are doing two things simultaneously, very contradictory. You are also pressing the brake: “Don’t run!” And the body is ready to run. You begin to tremble, heat is created. Now your body feels, “How are you behaving?” The body cannot understand you. A gap is created. The unconscious goes on doing something else and the conscious goes on doing something else. You are divided. This gap has to be understood deeply. In our every act this gap is there.
You are looking at a film, an erotic film: your sex is aroused. Your body is ready to explode in a sexual experience, but you are just seeing a film, just sitting in your chair – and your body is ready for a sexual act. And the film will go on accelerating, it will go on pushing you. You are aroused, and you cannot do anything. The body is ready to do something and the situation is not. A gap is created. You begin to feel yourself different, and there is a barrier between you and your body. Because of that barrier and because of this constant arousal and suppression simultaneously, this acceleration and braking simultaneously, this constant contradiction in your existence, you are diseased.
Either fall back, be an animal…which is impossible. Then you will be whole and healthy. This is a strange fact: animals are not ill in their natural state, but put them in a zoo and they begin to imitate human diseases. No animal is homosexual in its natural surrounding and state. Put animals into a zoo and they begin to behave absurdly – they begin to behave homosexually. No animal goes insane naturally, but in a zoo animals go mad.
It has never been reported in the whole history of human understanding that any animal ever committed suicide, but in a zoo animals commit suicide. This is strange, but not strange really, because the moment man begins to force animals into a life which is not natural, they become divided inside. A division is created, a gap is created, the wholeness is lost.
And man is divided. Man is born divided. So what to do? How not to create this gap and how to bring awareness to every cell of the body, to every nook and corner of your being? How to bring awareness? That’s the only problem for all religions, for all yoga, and for all systems of enlightenment: how to bring consciousness to your total being so that nothing is unconscious.
Many methods have been tried, many methods are possible, so I will talk about some methods for how even the very cells of your body can become aware. And unless you as a total being become aware, you cannot be in bliss, you cannot be at peace. You will continue to be a madhouse.
Each cell of your body affects you. It has its own working, it has its own learning, its own conditioning. The moment you start, the cell takes over and begins to behave in its own way. Then you are disturbed: “What is happening? I never intended this. I never thought about this.” And you are right! Your desires may have been completely different. But once you give your cells, your body, something to do, it is going to do it in its own way, in its own learned way. Because of this, scientists, particularly Russian scientists, think that we cannot change man unless we change the cells.
There is a school, a behavioristic school of psychologists, which thinks that Buddha is a failure, that Jesus is a failure: “They are bound to be failures. There is nothing strange in it, because without changing the very structure of the body, the chemical structure of the body, nothing can be changed.”
These behaviorists – Watson, Pavlov, Skinner – they say, “If Buddha is silent, it only means that somehow he has a different chemical constitution and nothing else. If he is silent, if peace surrounds him, if he is never disturbed, never angry, it only shows that somehow the chemicals are lacking which create disturbance, which create anger.”
So Skinner says, “Sooner or later we will be able to create buddhas chemically. There is no need of any meditation, there is no need of becoming more aware. The only need is to change chemicals.”
And in a way he is right, but very dangerously right, because if certain chemicals are put out of your body, your behavior will change. If certain hormones are introduced into your body, your behavior will change. You are a man and you behave like a man. It is not you who behave like a man, it is only the hormones in you which behave like a man. If those hormones are changed and other hormones are introduced which belong to the feminine structure, you will behave like a woman. So really it is not your behavior, it is hormonal behavior. It is not you who are angry, but a certain hormone in you. It is not that you are silent and meditative, it is a certain hormone in you.
Skinner says, “That’s why Buddha is a failure, because he goes on talking about things which are irrelevant. You say to a man, ‘Don’t be angry,’ and he is filled with chemicals, hormones, which create anger.” So for a behaviorist, “It is just like a person has a high fever, a hundred-and-six-degree fever, and you go on saying beautiful things to him. You say, ‘Be silent, meditate. Don’t get feverish.’ It looks absurd. What can the man do? Unless you change something in his body, the fever will remain. Fever is created by a certain virus, certain chemical things. Unless that is changed, unless the proportion is changed, he will remain feverish. And there is no need to talk…it is absolutely absurd!”
It is the same with anger for Skinner, for Pavlov; the same is with sex. “You go on talking about brahmacharya, celibacy, et cetera, and the body is filled with sex energy, sex cells. That sex energy is not dependent on you; rather, you are dependent on that energy. So go on talking about brahmacharya – nothing is possible with these talks.”
And they are right in a way, but still only in a way. They are right: if the chemicals are changed, if every sex hormone is thrown out of your body, you will not be able to be sexual. But you will not become a buddha. You will be simply impotent – simply impotent, incapable. You will lack something.
Buddha is not lacking something. Rather, on the contrary, something new has come to his life. It is not that he has no sex hormones – they are there. So what has happened to him? His consciousness has deepened, and the consciousness has entered even the sex cells. Now the sex cells are there, but they cannot behave independently. Unless the center orders them to act, they cannot act. They will remain inactive.
In an impotent person sex cells are not there. In a buddha they are there, and more strong than an ordinary person’s – stronger because never used, unused. Energy is accumulated in them, bubbling with energy, but consciousness has penetrated into the cells. Now the consciousness is not only a starting point but it has become the master.
Skinner may prevail in the coming days. He may become a very great force. Just like Marx suddenly became a great force for the outer economy of society, just like Marx, any day Pavlov and Skinner can become a very central force for the inner economy of the human body and the human mind. And they can prove it: whatsoever they say they can prove. But the phenomenon has two aspects.
You see an electric bulb. If you destroy the bulb, the light will disappear – not that the electricity has disappeared. You put off the current, the bulb is there, intact, but the light will disappear. So the light can disappear in two ways. Destroy the bulb: electricity will be there, but because there is no medium to express it, it cannot become light. If your sex cells are destroyed, sexuality will be in you but with no medium to express. This is one way.
Skinner has experimented with many animals. Just by operating on a particular gland, a ferocious dog becomes buddhalike. He sits silently, as if in meditation. You cannot tempt him to be ferocious again. Whatsoever you do, he will look at you without any anger – not that the dog has become a buddha, not that the inner mind has disappeared. It is there the same, but the medium is absent through which the anger can be expressed. This is impotency. The medium has disappeared, not the desire. But if the medium is destroyed, when the bulb is not, you can say, “Where is your light and where is your electricity?” It is there, now hidden.
Religions have been working from the other corner…not to destroy the bulb. That is stupid, because if you destroy the bulb then you will not even be aware of the current running behind. Change the current, transform the current, let the current move in a new dimension, and the bulb will be there intact, alive, but with no light.
Skinner, I say, can prevail, because he shows a very easy way. You are angry? You can be operated upon. You feel sexual? You can be operated upon. Your problems will be solved, but not by you – by a surgeon, by someone else. And whenever a problem is solved by someone else, you have missed a very great opportunity, because when you solve it you grow. When someone else solves it, you remain the same. The problem can be solved through the body; there will be no problems, but you will also no longer be a human being.
The religious emphasis is on transformation of the consciousness. And the first thing is to create a greater force of awareness inside so that that awareness can spread.
This sutra is beautiful. It says:
To be established in the sun of awareness is the only lamp.
The sun is very, very far away. The light takes ten minutes to travel to the earth, and the light travels very fast – 186,000 miles per second. It takes ten minutes for the sun to reach the earth; it is very, very far. But in the morning the sun rises, and it reaches even to the flower in your garden. The word reach has a different meaning; just the rays reach, not the sun.
So if your energy becomes a sun deep inside at the center, a solar center, if you become aware, centrally aware, and if your awareness grows, then your rays of awareness reach to every part of the body, to every cell. Then your awareness penetrates every cell of the body.
It is just like when the sun rises in the morning and everything begins to be alive on the earth, suddenly. Suddenly there is life. Sleep disappears, the monotonous night disappears. Suddenly everything begins to be reborn. The birds begin to sing and they are again on the wing, and the flowers flower, and everything is alive again. Just the touch, just the warmth!
So when you have a central consciousness, awareness in you, it begins to reach to every pore, nook and corner; to every cell it penetrates. And you have many, many cells – sixty trillion cells in your body. You are a big city, a big nation. Sixty trillion cells, and now they are all unconscious. Your consciousness has never reached them. Grow in this consciousness and every cell is penetrated. And the moment your consciousness touches a cell, it is different. The very quality changes.
A man is asleep. The sun rises, and the man is awakened. Is he the same man who was asleep? Are sleep and awakening the same? There was a bud, closed, dead, and the sun has risen, and the bud opens and becomes a flower. Is this flower the same? Something new has penetrated. The aliveness, the capacity to grow and blossom, has appeared. The bird was just asleep, as if dead, as if just dead matter. Now the sun has come up and the bird is on the wing. Is it the same bird? It is a different phenomenon. Something has touched…and the bird has become alive. Everything was silent, and now everything is singing. The morning is a song.
The same phenomenon happens inside the cells of a buddha body. It is known as buddhakaya, the body of the buddha. It is a different body. It is not the same body as you have, not even the same body as Gautama had before he became Buddha.

Buddha is just on the verge of death and someone asks him, “Are you dying? Then where will you be?”
Buddha says, “The body that was born will die. But there is another body – buddhakaya, the body of the buddha – which is neither born nor can die. But I have left that body that was given to me, that came to me from my parents. I have left it long ago. Just as a snake leaves the old body every year, I have left it. This is a buddhakaya, a buddha body.”

What does this mean? Your body can become a buddha body. When your consciousness reaches to every cell, the very quality of your being changes, is transmuted, because then every cell is alive, conscious, enlightened. And now there is no slavery. You have become the master. Just by becoming a conscious center, you become a master.
This sutra says: To be established in the sun of awareness is the only lamp. So why are you taking this earthen lamp to the temple? Take the inner lamp. Why are you burning these candles on the altar? They will not help. Kindle the inner candle, become a buddha body – let your every cell become conscious. Don’t allow any part of your being to remain unconscious.
Buddhists have preserved some bones of Buddha. People think that they are just superstitious. They are not, because they are not ordinary bones. They are not. The cells, the particles, the electrons of those bones, have known something which happens rarely. In Kashmir, in a mosque, one hair of Mohammed is preserved. That is no ordinary hair. It is not just superstitious – that hair has known something.
Just try to understand it in this way: a flower which has never known any sunrise, and a flower which has known, encountered the sun, are not the same, cannot be the same. The flower that has never known a sunrise has never known a life arise in it, because it arises with the sun arising. That flower is just dead – a potentiality. It has never known its own spirit. A flower which has seen the sun rise has also seen something rise in itself. It has known a soul. Now the flower is not just a flower, it has known a deep stirring inside. Something has stirred, something has become alive in it.
So the hair of Mohammed is a different thing; a different quality it has. It has known a man, it has been with a man who was an inner sun, an inner light. This hair has taken a deep bath in something mysterious, which rarely happens.
To be established in this inner light is the only lamp worth taking to the altar of the deity. Nothing else will do. How to create this center of awareness? I will discuss one or two or three methods. Because I was talking of Buddha and buddhakaya, it will be good to start with Buddha. He invented a method, one of the most wonderful methods, most powerful methods, to create an inner fire, an inner sun of awareness. And not only to create it, but the method is such that simultaneously that inner light begins to penetrate to the very cells of the body, to your whole being.
Buddha used breathing as the method: breathing with awareness. The method is known as anapansati yoga, the yoga of incoming and outgoing breath awareness. You are breathing, but it is an unconscious thing. And breath is prana, breath is the Bergsonian élan vital, the vitality, the very vitality, the very life – and it is unconscious. You are not aware of it. If you need to be aware of it, you may drop dead any moment because then it will be very difficult to breathe.
I have heard about certain fish which cannot sleep for more than six minutes, because if they sleep more they die – they forget to breathe. If their sleep is deepened, they forget to breathe, so they die. Those particular fish cannot sleep for more than six minutes. They have to live in a group, always in a group. Some fish is sleeping, other fish have to be constantly alert not to allow that fish to go more into sleep. When the time is over, they will disturb the sleep; otherwise the fish will just go dead. She will not come back again.
This is a scientific observation. It will be a problem with you also if you have to remember it, if you have to do breathing. Then you will have to remember constantly to do it, and you cannot remember anything even for a single moment. One moment missed and you are no more! So breathing is unconscious; it doesn’t depend on you. Even if you are in a coma for months together, you will go on breathing.
Really, just by the way, I would like to tell you those fish are rare. And some day science may come to know that they have a certain deep awareness which even man lacks, because to breathe consciously is a very difficult thing. Those fish may have attained a certain awareness which is not with us.
Buddha used this breath as the vehicle to do two things simultaneously: one, to create consciousness; and the other, to allow that consciousness to penetrate to the very cells of the body. He said, “Breathe consciously.” It is not a pranayama; it is just making breath an object of awareness – with no change, no need to change your breath. Just as it is, natural, let it be as it is. Don’t change it. Do something else: when you breathe in, breathe consciously. Let your consciousness move with the breath going in. When the breath goes out, move out. Go in, come out…consciously, move with the breath. Let your attention be with the breath, flowing with it. Don’t forget even a single breath.
Buddha is reported to have said that if you can be aware of your breath even for a single hour, you are already enlightened. But not a single breath should be missed. One hour is enough. It looks so small, a fragment of time. It is not. When you try awareness, one hour will look like millennia, because you cannot be aware, ordinarily, for more than five or six seconds, and that too a very alert man. Otherwise, every second you will miss. You will start: breath is going in, and breath has gone in, and you have gone somewhere else. Suddenly you remember again: the breath is going out, the breath has gone out, you have moved somewhere else.
To move with the breath means no thought should be allowed, because thought will take your attention, thought will distract you. So Buddha never says to stop thinking. He says, “Just breathe consciously.” Automatically, thinking will stop. You cannot do both, think and breathe, consciously.
A thought comes to your mind, your attention is withdrawn. A single thought and you become unconscious of your breathing process. So Buddha used a very simple technique and very vital. He would say to his bhikkhus, “Do whatsoever you are doing, but don’t forget a simple thing: remember the incoming, outgoing breath. Move with it, flow with it.”
The more you try, the more you endeavor, the more you can be conscious. It will increase by seconds and seconds. It is arduous, a difficult thing, but once you can feel it you are a different man, a different being in a different world.
This works in a double way: when you consciously breathe in and out, you come to your center, by and by, because your breath touches the center of your being. Every moment…the breath goes in, it touches your center of being.
Physiologically, you think that breath is just for the purification of the blood, so it is just a function of your heart. It is – bodily it is a function of your heart, just a pumping system to refresh your blood circulation, to give to your blood more oxygen which is needed, and to throw out carbon dioxide which is excreta, used stuff, to throw it out, and renew it and replace it. But this is only physiologically.
If you begin to be aware of your breath, by and by you will go deep – deeper than your heart. And one day you begin to feel a center just near your navel. That center can only be felt if you move with the breath, continuously, because the nearer you reach to the center, the more you will lose consciousness. You can start when the breath is going in, just touching your nose, you can start being very alert. The further inward it moves, the more and more difficult consciousness will become. And a thought will come or some sound, or something will happen, and you will move.
If you can go to the very center, where for a subtle moment breath stops, there is a gap. The breath goes in, the breath goes out: between these two there is a subtle gap. That gap is your center. When you move with the breath, then only, after a very long effort, you will become aware of the gap – when there is no movement of the breath, breath is neither coming nor going. Between two breaths there is a subtle gap, an interval. In that interval you are at the center.
So breath is used by Buddha as a passage to come nearer and nearer and nearer to the center. When you move out, be conscious of the breath. Again there is a gap. There are two gaps: one gap inside, one gap outside. The breath goes in and goes out…there is a gap. The breath goes out and goes in…there is a gap. The second gap is even more difficult to be aware of.
Look at this process. Your center is between the incoming breath and outgoing breath. There is another center, the cosmic center; you may call it godliness. When the breath goes out and comes in, there is again a gap. In that gap is the cosmic center. These two centers are not two different things, but first you will become aware of your inner center and then you will become aware of an outer center. And then ultimately you will become aware that both these centers are one. Then out and in lose meaning.
Buddha says move with the breath consciously and you will create a center of awareness. And once the center is created, awareness begins to move with the breath into your blood, to the very cells, because every cell needs air and every cell needs oxygen and every cell, so to speak, breathes – every cell! And now the scientists say that it even seems that the earth breathes. And because of the Einsteinian concept of an expanding universe, now theoretical scientists say that it seems that the whole universe is breathing.
When you breathe in, your chest expands. When you breathe out, your chest shrinks. Now theoretical scientists say it seems that the whole universe breathes. When the whole universe is breathing in, it expands. When the whole universe breathes out, it shrinks. In the old Hindu puranas it is said that creation is Brahma’s one breath, the incoming breath; and destruction, pralaya, the end of the world, is the outgoing breath. One breath, one creation.
In a very miniature way, in a very atomic way, the same is happening in you. When your awareness becomes so one with breathing, your breathing takes your awareness to the very cells. Rays now penetrate and the whole body becomes a buddha body. Really, then you have no material body at all. You have a body of awareness.
This is what is meant by this sutra: …be established in the sun of awareness – this is the only lamp.
Just like Buddha’s method, it will be good to understand another method, one method more. Tantra has used sex. That is again another very vital force. If you want to go deep, you have to use very vital forces, the deepest in you. Tantra uses sex. When you are in a sex act, you are very near to the center of creation, to the very source of life. If you can go into a sex act consciously, it becomes meditation.
It is very difficult, more difficult than breath. You can breathe consciously in a small measure, of course, but you can. But the very phenomenon of sex requires your unconsciousness. If you become conscious, you will lose sexual desire and lust. If you become conscious, there will be no sex desire inside. So Tantra has done the most difficult thing in the world. In the history of experiments with consciousness, Tantra goes the deepest.
Of course, one can deceive oneself. And with Tantra deception is very easy, because no one other than you knows what the fact is, and no one else can know. But only one in a hundred can succeed in a tantric method of awareness, because sex means unconsciousness. So a tantrica, a tantric disciple, has to work, just like with breathing, he has to work with sex, sex desire. He has to be conscious of it; actually going into the sex act, he has to be conscious.
Your very body, the sex energy, comes to a peak to explode. The tantric sadhak comes to this peak consciously, and there is a method to judge. If sex release happens automatically and you are not the master, then you are not conscious of it. Then the unconscious has taken over. Sex comes to a peak, and then you cannot do anything but release. That release is not done by you. You can start a sexual process, but you never end it. The end is always taken over by the unconscious.
If you can retain the peak, and if it becomes your conscious act to release it or not to release it, if you can come back from the peak without release, or if you can maintain that peak for hours together – if it is your conscious act, then you are the master. And if someone can come to a sexual peak, just on the verge of orgasm, and can retain it and be conscious of it, suddenly he becomes aware of the deepest center inside, suddenly. And it is not only that he is aware of the deepest center inside of himself, he is also aware of the center of his partner, the deepest center.
That’s why a tantra practitioner, if he is a man, will always worship the partner. The partner is not just a sex object. She is divine, she is a goddess. And the act is not carnal at all. If you can go into it consciously, it is the deepest spiritual act possible. But the deepest is bound to be virtually impossible.
So either breath or sex.
Mahavira has used hunger. That again is a very deep thing. Hunger is not just hunger for your taste or for something else – it is for your very survival. Mahavira used hunger, fasting, as a method of awareness. It is not austerity. Mahavira was not an ascetic. People have misunderstood him completely. He was not an ascetic at all. No wise man ever is. But he was using fasting, hunger, as a vehicle to awareness.
You might have stumbled upon the fact that when your stomach is full, you begin to feel sleepy, you begin to feel unconscious. You want to go to sleep. When you are hungry, fasting, you cannot sleep. Even in the night you will turn this way and that; you cannot sleep. On a fast, why can’t you sleep? Because it is dangerous to life. Now, sleep is a secondary need. First need is food – get food! That’s the first need. Sleep is not a problem now.
But Mahavira used it in a very, very scientific way – because you cannot fall asleep when you are fasting, you can remember things more easily, consciousness comes to you more easily. And Mahavira used this very hunger as an object of consciousness. He would stand continuously. You might have seen Buddha’s statue sitting; Mahavira’s statues are, more or less, all standing. He was always standing. You can feel your hunger more when you are standing. If you are sitting you will feel it less; if you lie down you will feel it even less.
When you are standing, the whole body begins to be hungry. You feel the hunger all over the body. The whole body flows, it becomes one river of hunger. From head to foot you are hungry. It is not only the belly that feels it; the whole body feels hunger. And Mahavira would stand silently watching, moving with hunger – just like moving with breath, moving with hunger. It is reported that in his twelve-year period of silence, he fasted, now and then, more or less, for eleven years. Only for three hundred and sixty days in twelve years did he take food. Hunger was the method.
Now, food and sex are the deepest things, just like breath is. When you go on, go on, go on being conscious of your hunger, doing nothing, just being conscious, suddenly you are thrown to your center, to your being. Because first hunger moves from the surface. If you don’t feed the surface, then deeper layers become hungry. If you don’t feed the deeper layers, then still deeper layers become hungry. And it goes on and on and on. Ultimately, the whole body begins to be hungry. When the whole body is hungry, you are thrown to the center.
So when you feel hunger, that is a false hunger. Really, that is more or less a habit, not hunger. If you take your lunch at a particular time, at one o’clock, then at one o’clock you begin to feel hunger. This is a false hunger, not connected with the body at all. If you don’t take food at one o’clock, at two o’clock you will feel that the hunger has disappeared. If it was natural, it would have grown more. Why should it disappear? If it was real, then you would feel it more at two and more at three and more at four. But it has disappeared. It was just a habit, a very superficial thing.
If you fast for three weeks, then only a well-fed man can come to a real hunger. Then for the first time you will know what real hunger is. Just now, you can never feel that hunger is as forceful as sex. It is more forceful – but real hunger. So it happens if you are on a fast that your sex desire will die, because now a more foundational thing is at stake.
Food is for your survival, sex is for the survival of your race. It is a distant phenomenon, not related with you. Sex is food for the race, not for you. You will die, but through sex humanity can live. So it is not really your problem; it is a racial problem. You can even give it up, but you cannot give up food, because that is your problem, it is concerned with you. So if you go on a fast, by and by sex will disappear; it will become more and more distant.
Because of this, many people are just befooling themselves. They think that if they take less food, they have become celibate, brahmacharins. They have not. The problem has only been shifted. Give them proper food and the sex desire will come back – more forcibly, more fresh, more young.
If you fast even further than three weeks, then your whole body hungers. Each cell, every cell of your body, begins to feel the hunger. Then for the first time not only is your stomach hungry, your whole body is hungry. You are surrounded by a deep fire of hunger. Mahavira used this as a method to be aware; so he would be hungry, fasting, and be aware.
A man can live without food for three months, a healthy man, of course. A normally healthy man can live for three months without food – for three months! If you go on fasting for three months, then suddenly one day you will be just on the verge of death. This is a conscious encounter with death. And that encounter comes only when you are on the verge of leaving your body and jumping to your center inside. Now the whole body is exhausted. It cannot continue. You are thrown back to your source. You cannot live in the body. By and by, you have been thrown by the body inside, inside, inside.
Food takes you outside, fasting takes you inside. A moment comes when the body cannot carry you any further – you are thrown to your center. In that moment the inner sun is released.
So Mahavira would fast for three months, even for four months. He was extraordinarily healthy. And then, suddenly, he would go into the village to beg for food. It has been so far a secret why suddenly, after three or four months, he would go into the village to beg for food. Really, whenever he came to the verge where even a single moment could prove fatal, only then would he go to beg for food. He would again enter the body, and then again he would fast, again go to the center, enter the body, go to the center….
Now you can feel the process: just breath coming in, going out; life coming into the body, life going out of the body, life coming into the body, life going out of the body. And Mahavira would be aware of this process. He would take food, he would be back in the body, so to speak, and then he would fast again. This he was doing continuously for twelve years. This was an inner process.
So I discussed three things: breath, sex, hunger – very primary, very basic, foundational things. Be conscious of any one of them. Breath is the easiest. It will be difficult to use a tantra method. The mind would like to use it, but it will be difficult. It will be difficult to use the hunger method, the mind will not like it. These two are very difficult. Whether you like them or not, they are difficult. Only the breath process is simple.
And for the coming age, I think Buddha’s method will be very helpful. It is moderate, easy, not very dangerous. That’s why Buddha is known always as the originator of the middle path, majjhimnikaya, the golden mean. Sex and food, between these two, breath is the golden mean, the exact middle – the exact middle.
And with any method – there are many more – any method, you are established into the inner light. And once established, your light begins to flow to your body cells. Then your whole mechanism is refreshed: you have a buddha body, an enlightened body.

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