“…completely quiet, neither thinking nor afraid, and yet be extraordinarily, passionately alive…”
…we do not ask. We want to be told. One of the most curious things in the structure of our psyche is that we all want to be told because we are the result of the propaganda of ten thousand years. We want to have our thinking confirmed and corroborated by another, whereas to ask a question is to ask it of yourself. What I say has very little value. You will forget it the moment you shut this book, or you will remember and repeat certain phrases, or you will compare what you have read here with some other book – but you will not face your own life. And that is all that matters – your life, yourself, your pettiness, your shallowness, your brutality, your violence, your greed, your ambition, your daily agony and endless sorrow – that is what you have to understand and nobody on earth or in heaven is going to save you from it but yourself.
Seeing everything that goes on in your daily life, your daily activities – when you pick up a pen, when you talk, when you go out for a drive or when you are walking alone in the woods – can you with one breath, with one look, know yourself very simply as you are?
When you know yourself as you are, then you understand the whole structure of man’s endeavor, his deceptions, his hypocrisies, his search. To do this you must be tremendously honest with yourself throughout your being. When you act according to your principles you are being dishonest because when you act according to what you think you ought to be you are not what you are. It is a brutal thing to have ideals. If you have any ideals, beliefs or principles you cannot possibly look at yourself directly. So can you be completely negative, completely quiet, neither thinking nor afraid, and yet be extraordinarily, passionately alive?
That state of mind which is no longer capable of striving is the true religious mind, and in that state of mind you may come upon this thing called truth or reality or bliss or God or beauty or love. This thing cannot be invited. please understand that very simple fact. It cannot be invited, it cannot be sought after, because the mind is too silly, too small, your emotions are too shoddy, your way of life too confused for that enormity, that immense something, to be invited into your little house, your little corner of living which has been trampled and spat upon. You cannot invite it. To invite it you must know it and you cannot know it. It doesn’t matter who says it, the moment he says, `I know’, he does not know. The moment you say you have found it you have not found it. If you say you have experienced it, you have never experienced it.