The Tyranny of the Mind (Part 2)
dwaite at INTERALPHA.CO.UK
Sat Aug 9 13:10:54 CDT 1997
Acting from the past (memories, thoughts etc.) or responding in the present
When we act from thoughts and ideas about what is right or wrong, we act out
of the past, in a way which, though it might have been appropriate then, is
most unlikely to be appropriate now. (In fact it probably wasn't appropriate
then either, because we were probably reacting based on past experience then
too!). In this situation our mind is functioning like a photograph album,
carrying frozen representations of how something once happened in the past.
If we are to respond appropriately, now, in the present, our mind must
function more like a mirror.
When you act, you are always acting through the past, you are acting out of
experience that you have accumulated, you are acting out of the conclusions
that you have arrived at in the past. How can you be spontaneous? The past
dominates, and because of the past you cannot even see the present. Your
eyes are so full of the past, the smoke of the past is so much, that seeing
is impossible. You cannot see! You are almost completely blind -- blind
because of the smoke, blind because of the past conclusions, blind because
The knowledgeable man is the most blind man in the world. Because he
functions out of his knowledge, he does not see what the case is. He simply
goes on functioning mechanically. He has learned something; it has become a
ready-made mechanism in him...he acts out of it. There is a famous story:
There were two temples in Japan, both enemies to each other, as temples have
always been down the ages. The priests were so antagonistic that they had
stopped even looking at each other. If they came across each other on the
road, they would not look at each other. If they came across each other on
the road they stopped talking; for centuries those two temples and their
priests had not talked. But both the priests had two small boys -- to serve
them, just for running errands. Both the priests were afraid that boys,
after all, will be boys, and they might start becoming friends to each other.
The one priest said to his boy, "Remember, the other temple is our enemy.
Never talk to the boy of the other temple! They are dangerous people --
avoid them as one avoids a disease, as one avoids the plague. Avoid them!"
The boy was always interested, because he used to get tired of listening to
great sermons -- he could not understand them. Strange scriptures were read,
he could not understand the language. Great, ultimate problems were
discussed. There was nobody to play with, nobody even to talk with. And when
he was told, "Don't talk to the boy of the other temple," great temptation
arose in him.
That's how temptation arises. That day he could not avoid talking to the
other boy. When he saw him on the road he asked him, "Where are you going?"
The other boy was a little philosophical; listening to great philosophy he
had become philosophical. He said, "Going? There is nobody who comes and
goes! It is happening -- wherever the wind takes me...." He had heard the
master say many times that that's how a Buddha lives, like a dead leaf:
wherever the wind takes it, it goes. So the boy said, "I am not! There is no
doer. So how can I go? What nonsense are you talking? I am a dead leaf.
Wherever the wind takes me...."
The other boy was struck dumb. He could not even answer. He could not find
anything to say. He was really embarrassed, ashamed, and felt also, "My
master was right not to talk with these people -- these are dangerous
people! What kind of talk is this? I had asked a simple question: 'Where are
you going?' In fact I already knew where he was going, because we were both
going to purchase vegetables in the market. A simple answer would have done."
He went back, told his master, "I am sorry, excuse me. You had prohibited
me, I didn't listen to you. In fact, because of your prohibition I was
tempted. This is the first time I have talked to those dangerous people. I
just asked a simple question. 'Where are you going?' and he started saying
strange things: 'There is no going, no coming. Who comes? Who goes? I am
utter emptiness,' he was saying, 'just a dead leaf in the wind. And wherever
the wind takes me....'"
The master said, "I told you before! Now, tomorrow stand in the same place
and when he comes ask him again, 'Where are you going?' And when he says
these things, you simply say, 'That's true. Yes, you are a dead leaf, so am
I. But when the wind is not blowing, where are you going? Then where can you
go?' Just say that, and that will embarrass him -- and he has to be
embarrassed, he has to be defeated. We have been constantly quarrelling, and
those people have not been able to defeat us in any debate. So tomorrow it
has to be done!"
Early the boy got up, prepared his answer, repeated it many times before he
went. Then he stood in the place where the boy used to cross the road,
repeated again and again, prepared himself, and then he saw the boy coming.
He said, "Okay, now!"
The boy came. He asked, "Where are you going?" And he was hoping that now
the opportunity would come.... But the boy said, "Wherever the legs will
take me...." No mention of wind! No talk of nothingness! No question of the
nondoer! Now what to do? His whole ready-made answer looked absurd. Now to
talk about the wind would be irrelevant.
Again crestfallen, now really ashamed that he was simply stupid: "And this
boy certainly knows some strange things -- now he says, 'Wherever the legs
He went back to the master. The master said, "I have told you not to talk
with those people -- they are dangerous! This is our centuries-long
experience. But now something has to be done. So tomorrow you ask again,
'Where are you going?' and when he says, 'Wherever my legs take me,' tell
him, 'If you had no legs, then...?' He has to be silenced one way or other!"
So the next day he asked again, "Where are you going?" and waited. And the
boy said, "I am going to the market to fetch vegetables."
Man ordinarily functions out of the past, and life goes on changing.
Life has no obligation to fit with your conclusions. That's why life is very
confusing -- confusing to the knowledgeable person. He has all ready-made
answers: The Bhagavad Gita, the holy Koran, the Bible, the Vedas. He has
everything crammed, he knows all the answers. But life never raises the same
question again; hence the knowledgeable person always falls short. (Ref. 5)
The real man of understanding acts -- acts tremendously, acts totally, but
he acts in the moment, out of his consciousness.
He is like a mirror. The ordinary man, the unconscious man, is not like a
mirror, he is like a photo-plate. What is the difference between a mirror
and a photographic plate? A photographic plate, once exposed, becomes
useless. It receives the impression, becomes impressed by it -- it carries
the picture. But remember, the picture is not reality -- the reality goes on
You can go into the garden and you can take a picture of a rosebush.
Tomorrow the picture will be the same, the day after tomorrow the picture
will also be the same. Go again and see the rosebush: it is no longer the
same. The roses have gone, or new roses have arrived. A thousand and one
things have happened.
It is said that once a realist philosopher went to see the famous painter,
Picasso. The philosopher believed in realism and he had come to criticise
Picasso because Picasso's paintings are abstract, they are not realistic.
They don't depict reality as it is. On the contrary, they are symbolic, have
a totally different dimension. The realist said, "I don't like your
paintings. A painting should be real! If you paint my wife, then your
painting should look like my wife." And he took out a picture of his wife
and said, "Look at this picture! The painting should be like this." Picasso
looked at the picture and said, "This is your wife?" He said, "Yes, this is
my wife!" Picasso said, "I am surprised! She is very small and flat."
The picture cannot be the wife!
Another story is told:
A beautiful woman came to Picasso and said, "Just the other day I saw your
self-portrait in a friend's home. It was so beautiful, I was so influenced,
almost hypnotised, that I hugged the picture and kissed it." Picasso said,
"Really! And then what did the picture do to you? Did the picture kiss you
back?" The woman said, "Are you mad?! The picture did not kiss me back."
Picasso said, "Then it was not me."
A picture is a dead thing. The camera, the photo-plate, catches only a
static phenomenon. And life is never static, it goes on changing. Your mind
functions like a camera, it goes on collecting pictures -- it is an album.
And then out of those pictures you go on reacting. Hence, you are never true
to life, because whatsoever you do is wrong; whatsoever you do, I say, is
wrong. It never fits.
A woman was showing the family album to her child, and they came across a
picture of a beautiful man: long hair, beard, very young, very alive.
The boy asked, "Mummy, who is this man?"
And the woman said, "Can't you recognise him? He is your daddy!"
The boy looked puzzled and said, "If he is my daddy, then who is that bald
man who lives with us?"
A picture is static. It remains as it is, it never changes. The unconscious
mind functions like a camera, it functions like a photographic plate. The
watchful mind, the meditative mind, functions like a mirror. It catches no
impression; it remains utterly empty, always empty. So whatsoever comes in
front of the mirror, it is reflected. If you are standing before the mirror,
it reflects you. If you are gone, don't say that the mirror betrays you. The
mirror is simply a mirror. When you are gone, it no longer reflects you; it
has no obligation to reflect you anymore. Now somebody else is facing it --
it reflects somebody else. If nobody is there, it reflects nothing. It is
always true to life.
The photographic plate is never true to life. Even if your photo is taken
right now, by the time the photographer has taken it out of the camera, you
are no longer the same! Much water has already gone down the Ganges. You
have grown, changed, you have become older. Maybe only one minute has
passed, but one minute can be a great thing -- you may be dead! Just one
minute before you were alive; after one minute, you may be dead. The picture
will never die.
But in the mirror, if you are alive, you are alive; if you are dead, you are
dead. Buddha says: Learn sitting silently -- become a mirror. Silence makes
a mirror out of your consciousness, and then you function moment to moment.
You reflect life. You don't carry an album within your head. Then your eyes
are clear and innocent, you have clarity, you have vision, and you are never
untrue to life. This is authentic living. (Ref. 5)
Mind doesn't function in the present
Activities of mind relate to past and future. We agonise over the former and
worry about the latter. We relive the past in dreams of how we ought to have
behaved and we fear for the future, wondering what we should do in this or
that eventuality. We have memories and we make plans. Experiences in the
past or concerns about the future (based upon events in the past) dictate
our behaviour in the present. Instead of just being, here and now, and
responding to what is in front of us, our action is limited often to the
point of becoming totally mechanical, because of our attachment to these
ghosts in the mind, endowed with a reality they do not themselves own by
virtue of the power of consciousness we give to them.
The only way to act appropriately is in response to what is here now in the
present moment. No matter what has gone before, that is now past. Awareness
and presence is important, not knowledge or memory.
For a man of awareness everything is for the first time, and a man of
awareness can do things -- even when he is doing them for the first time --
perfectly. His efficiency does not come out of his past, his efficiency
comes out of his present. Let this be remembered. You can do things in two
ways. You can do something because you have done it before -- so you know
how to do it, you need not be present, you can simply do it in a mechanical
way. But if you have not done it before, and you are going to do it for a
first time, you have to be tremendously alert because now you don't have any
past experience. So you cannot rely on the memory, you have to rely on
These are the two sources of functioning: either you function out of memory,
out of knowledge, out of the past, out of mind; or you function out of
awareness, out of the present, out of no-mind. (Ref. 8)
I have told you already that knowledge is most useful in dealing with
things. But it does not tell you how to deal with people and yourself, how
to live a life. We are not talking of driving a car, or earning money. For
this you need experience. But for being alight unto yourself material
knowledge will not help you. You need something much more intimate and
deeper than mediate knowledge, to be yourself in the true sense of the word.
Your outer life is unimportant. You can become a night watchman and live
happily. It is what you are inwardly that matters. Your inner peace and joy
you have to earn. It is much more difficult than earning money. No
university can teach you to be yourself. The only way to learn is by
practice. Right away begin to be yourself. Discard all you are not and go
ever deeper. Just as a man digging a well discards what is not water, until
he reaches the water-bearing strata, so must you discard what is not your
own, till nothing is left which you can disown. You will find that what is
left is nothing which the mind can hook onto. You are not even a human
being. You just are - a point of awareness, co-extensive with time and space
and beyond both, the ultimate cause, itself uncaused. If you ask me: 'Who
are you?', my answer would be: 'Nothing in particular. Yet I am.' (Ref 10)
We have to give up information, knowledge and even wisdom if we are to just
be our true self. What is required is Self-knowledge, knowledge of truth or
wisdom. St. Luke says "And which of you with taking thought can add to his
stature one cubit?" George S. Arundale:- " The conqueror and king in each of
us is the Knower of truth. Let that Knower awaken in us and drive the horses
of the mind, emotions, and physical body on the pathway which the king has
chosen." And George Gurdjieff:- "Without self knowledge, without
understanding the working and functions of his machine, man cannot be free,
he cannot govern himself and he will always remain a slave." But Lao Tzu
tells us that even wisdom must be given up before we can attain to the Tao
or true Self.
If I am not tied to my own way of thinking, I shall be able to understand
and appreciate all other ways of looking at things. Then I begin to
understand that no matter how and where the rivers flow, one day they all
reach the ocean. Then I will not say that the river that flows to the east
will never reach the sea, just because my river is flowing to the west. Then
I get a glimpse of the ocean in all the rivers. But if the vision is tied
down, the difficulty is immense. Then there is no way to understand.
It is always better to understand the viewpoint of those who think contrary
to us. He who thinks as you do cannot change you, he can only add something
more to you. You had ten reasons to support yourself. Now you will have
twelve, fifteen. But one who thinks contrary to you opens up new horizons
for you. Then, not only do you add something more to your perception, but
you enrich your consciousness also.
We have three words: one is information, the second is knowledge and the
third is wisdom.
Mostly, information is regarded as knowledge. The more one knows, the more
knowledgeable he considers himself to be. Quantity means quality to him. But
what has happened is only that such a person's remembrance has increased. He
is now a bigger computer; he has not progressed. Information is not
knowledge; remembrance is not knowledge. When information increases, a man
becomes knowledgeable, educated, but he does not become wise.
There have been many people in the world who have said, "Do not gather
information. Attain knowledge. Information is of no use. However much
information you gather, it will all be borrowed. Knowledge is one's own.
Therefore leave the borrowed and attain by your own experience." This is
quite understandable to us. But Lao Tzu goes a step further and says. "Leave
knowledge also; for this knowing and not knowing is a play of duality. It
too is a conflict. Leave this also."
Even this we can understand. Buddha too has said, "What will you gain by
knowing? You have studied the shastras. To what avail?" The question is not
of knowing, but of developing our wisdom, our inner knowledge. Our
understanding should increase. Wisdom is the essence of knowledge. Just like
perfume is attained by squeezing the essence out of flowers, so wisdom is
the sum and substance of all knowledge, all experiences. Wisdom is a
fragrance. When a thousand experiences and knowledges are compressed, one
drop of wisdom is attained.
But Lao Tzu says, "Leave your wisdom also." This is too much! Leave
information this we can understand because it is all borrowed knowledge.
Leave knowledge this too we can understand because there is the duality of
knowledge and ignorance. But if we let go wisdom, the mind will say, "Then I
shall become like a stone! Then what will be the difference between me and
inert matter?" Then, you will argue, "what is the difference between me and
the chair I sit on?" These questions raised by the mind become a hindrance
in our understanding of Lao Tzu.
Lao Tzu says, "Leave your sagacity, your wisdom." What does he mean? He
means that what is grasped can be left also, for it does not belong to you.
That which you cannot let go of is your true wisdom. Whatever you can drop,
and does drop off, let it go. A moment will come when you will say, "I have
nothing more to give up." You have no house, no wealth, no information, no
knowledge, no wisdom, no experience. The moment you feel you have nothing
left that you can renounce, that very moment you attain true wisdom. The
wisdom you are afraid to give up for fear of becoming insentient is no wisdom.
Understand well: that which cannot be renounced is true wisdom. Therefore
Lao Tzu says, "Leave wisdom" -- for that which you can let go of cannot be
wisdom. Wisdom, according to Lao Tzu, is the very nature of the wise. One
cannot leave one's nature. That which we can leave cannot be our nature.
Says Lao Tzu, "Only that alone should remain which 'I am'." There should be
no collection of borrowed information and knowledge. Even if it is my own,
it is not worth carrying along. Borrowed experiences are useless. One's own
experiences are also dead. What I knew yesterday is dead today. The essence
of what I came to know yesterday is wisdom. It has become the past; it has
turned to dust. Live coal turns into ash though it was once a part and
parcel of a burning fire. But, if the embers are to be kept alive, we have
to shake off the ashes.
Lao Tzu says: "Your wisdom is like ash, covering your nature." It comes from
your very self; you are the ember. Keep flicking off the ashes, let the live
ember remain; let only your nature remain. Let nothing cover it. Whether it
is the ashes of borrowed knowledge or your own knowledge -- both are ashes
-- they have to be wiped off. Do not hold on to the ashes of your own embers
just because it is your own.
If you live for fifty years, the ashes of fifty years' experience has
gathered on you. In this what you have learned from others is information;
what you have known yourself is knowledge. The sum total of this information
and knowledge, the essence that creates the fragrance within you, is your
wisdom. But Lao Tzu says, "Leave this also. Just be your pure self." Become
your naked nature -- that which you are. This is what Mahavira calls the
atman and Buddha calls the emptiness. These are just verbal differences. Lao
Tzu calls it nature, Tao.
"Discard knowledge, banish wisdom and people will benefit a hundredfold." If
people revert back and become fixed in their pure nature, then sorrow and
pain, agony and anxiety, tension and worry shall disappear; and the innocent
will flower within themselves. Once the load of your experiences is removed
from the consciousness, the soul or consciousness, or whatever we choose to
call that which is within us -- remains in what Heidegger refers to as its
pure being. This is what Lao Tzu is talking about. Then people will prosper
We feel people will prosper as knowledge increases, as experience and
information increase, intelligence increases. Lao Tzu says just the
opposite. Actually, as all these increase, their dust begins to gather layer
by layer on our nature and the embers within are hidden under their weight.
Then it becomes a Herculean task to reach to oneself. There will be so many
layers to uncover that it will be almost impossible to reach the self.
A human being is like an onion. Remove one layer, and there is another
layer; remove this and there is yet another. You are nothing but a
collection of knowledge, experience, information, understanding, education,
impressions, culture and tradition. Where you yourself are, you do not know.
A man is hidden by his own coverings. Lao Tzu tells us to remove all our
coverings and be in that which you cannot remove. Then you shall really
profit. The greatest calamity that can happen to a person is to lose his own
self. (Ref. 9)
What to do
Don't fight your thoughts. Just do nothing about them, let them be, whatever
they are. Your very fighting gives them life. Just disregard. Look through.
Remember to remember: 'whatever happens - happens because I am'. All reminds
you that you are. Take full advantage of the fact that to experience you
must be. You need not stop thinking. Just cease being interested. It is
disinterestedness that liberates. Don't hold on, that is all. The world is
made of rings. The hooks are all yours. Make straight your hooks and nothing
can hold you. Give up your addictions. There is nothing else to give up.
Stop your routine of acquisitiveness, your habit of looking for results and
the freedom of the universe is yours. Be effortless. (Ref. 10)
And meditation is the most powerful tool in our arsenal to begin the process
of dissolving the accumulation of detritus in the mind and uncovering our
Meditation is a state of clarity, not a state of mind. Mind is confusion.
Mind is never clear. It cannot be. Thoughts create clouds around you - they
are subtle clouds. A mist is created by them and the clarity is lost. When
thoughts disappear, when there are no more clouds around you, when you are
in your simple beingness, clarity happens. Then you can see far away; then
you can see to the very end of existence; then your gaze becomes penetrating
- to the very core of your being.
Meditation is clarity; absolute clarity of vision. You cannot think about
it. You have to drop thinking. (Ref. 13)
Growing old is not of any worth, every animal does it, it needs no
intelligence. Growing up is a totally different experience. Growing old is
horizontal; growing up is vertical, it leads you to heights, it leads you to
depths. And strangely enough, you will be surprised to know that time is
horizontal. One moment passes, another moment comes, another moment, another
moment.... in a line, a horizontal line. Time is horizontal, and mind also
is horizontal. One thought is followed by another thought, and by another
thought, and by another thought, but in a line, in a row, a procession, or
just traffic - but it is going horizontal.
Meditation is vertical, it is going beyond mind and beyond time. And
perhaps, ultimately you will find that time and mind are equivalent, two
names of the same phenomenon - the horizontal procession of thoughts, of
moments, Meditation is to stop time and mind both, and suddenly you start
rising up in eternity. Eternity is not part of time, and eternity is not a
thought; it is an experience. (Ref. 15)
Sri Ramana Maharshi has said "The mind is like the moon, deriving its light
of consciousness from the Self, which thus resembles the sun. Hence when the
Self begins to shine, the mind, like the moon, becomes useless". Greg Goebel
is perhaps saying the same thing when he states "Reality is what refuses to
go away when I stop thinking about it".
Man's essential nature is pure Consciousness. The knowledge of an object is
gained by the experience "I know". This experience is produced when a
thought is enlivened by this Consciousness. A thought by itself is inert and
insentient. Consciousness is the knowing principle - pure and absolute. It
is the subject knowing and not an object of knowledge. When however pure
Consciousness is in contact with a thought, the
thought-conditioned-consciousness creates the concept of "I know". The
knower-of-the-thoughts created by the knowing principle functioning through
thoughts is man.
Compare this to the phenomenon of perception. An object is perceptible only
when it is illumined. An object itself is not perceptible as is evidenced in
darkness. Pure light is also imperceptible. When light strikes an object, it
gets reflected and the object-conditioned-light is that which is
perceptible. Perception, therefore, is light plus object. Likewise,
knowledge is consciousness plus thought.
You, being the knower-of-thoughts are a product of the union of pure
Consciousness with thoughts. Thoughts cause your individualisation and
consequent limitation. The way to regain your original divine nature is
therefore to follow all means of transcending thoughts. (Ref. 14)
Even the experiencer is secondary. Primary is the infinite expanse of
consciousness, the eternal possibility, the immeasurable potential of all
that was, is, and will be. When you look at anything, it is the ultimate you
see, but you imagine that you see a cloud or a tree.
Learn to look without imagination, to listen without distortion: that is
all. Stop attributing names and shapes to the essentially nameless and
formless. Realise that every mode of perception is subjective; that what is
seen or heard, touched or smelt, felt or thought, expected or imagined, is
in the mind and not in reality, and you will experience peace and freedom
Even the sense of 'I am' is composed of the pure light and the sense of
being. The 'I' is there even without the 'am'. So is the pure light there
whether you say 'I' or not. Become aware of that pure light and you will
never lose it. The beingness in being, the awareness in consciousness, the
interest in every experience - that is not describable, yet perfectly
accessible, for there is nothing else. (Ref. 10)
Dennis Waite 9th August 1997
Ref. 1 Peter Smith and O. R. Jones - 'The Philosophy of Mind'
Ref. 2 Francis Lucille - Response to my Internet query.
Ref. 3 Ramesh S. Balsekar - Pointers from Nisargadatta Maharaj
Ref. 4 Sri H. W. L. Poonja - The Truth Is
Ref. 5 Osho - The Dhammapada: The Way of the Buddha
Ref. 6 A. Parthasarathy - Vedanta Treatise
Ref. 7 Osho - The Discipline of Transcendence
Ref. 8 Osho - The Art of Dying
Ref. 9 Osho - The Way of Tao
Ref. 10 Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj - I Am That
Ref. 11 Alan Watts - The Nature of Consciousness
Ref. 12 Alan Watts - The Wisdom of Insecurity
Ref. 13 Osho - Ancient Music in the Pines
Ref. 14 A. Parthasarathy - Atmabodha - Knowledge of Self
Ref 15 Osho - I celebrate myself: God is Nowhere, Life is Now Here
Types of thinking (Lucille)
There are three kinds of thoughts:
1. Practical thoughts, which are useful in conducting our business or our
daily life, like, for instance, "I need to get some gas". This type of
thought should not be suppressed (we don't want to run out of gas!). Once it
has been given due consideration and the required steps have been taken,
these thoughts leave us spontaneously.
2. Thoughts related to the Ultimate, to our understanding of the non-dual
perspective, such as "there is, in truth, nothing to be done". These
thoughts come from the Ultimate. If we welcome them, they purify the mind
from its dualistic conditioning and eventually take us back to their source.
They bring about clarity and give us an adumbration of the bliss which is
inherent to our real nature.
3. Thoughts related to the notion of being a personal entity, such as
desires, fears, doubts, which includes day-dreaming and other kinds of
wishful thinking. Some thoughts of this third kind are apparently innocuous
and, for this reason, difficult to detect in the beginning. A strong emotion
conducive to suffering and disharmony such as jealousy or fear will be
easily detected, whereas I may indulge for some time, without noticing it,
into picturing myself on the beaches of the French Riviera with a beautiful
It is a common and frequent error to consider any kind of thought as an
obstacle to self-realisation. The thoughts of the third kind are the only
ones that are obstacles to being knowingly established in the Absolute.
There are two ways to deal with these thoughts as they arise:
A. If we are not yet convinced that we are not a limited personal entity,
whenever we notice such a thought, we should attempt to find its source, the
ego. Of course, our attempt to catch the ego fails, as Ramakrishna points
out, which takes us directly to the non-existent center of the onion. At
this moment, the ego vanishes and we experience our innate freedom (for what
looks like a very short moment). This glimpse at the truth reinforces our
conviction that we are not a personal entity.
B. Once we are convinced that we are not a personal entity, the thoughts of
the third kind usually keep reoccurring for some time as a matter of habit,
in the same way as inertia keeps an electrical motor running after its power
cord has been unplugged. In this case, there is no need to investigate the
origin of these thoughts; we can simply drop them as soon as we notice them.
When you profess a belief in something, what you are effectively saying is
that it is so 'to the best of your knowledge'. No matter how strongly you
believe, there is still some room for doubt. When information has been
transformed, through experience, into knowledge, that doubt is removed.
Another mechanism is possible, however, where it has not been possible, for
whatever reason, to have the experience. This is 'trust', in which the
question of doubt simply does not arise.
Trust in life then you cannot lose anything.
But that trust cannot come by indoctrination, that trust cannot come by
education, preaching, studying, thinking -- that trust can only come by
experiencing life in all its opposites, in all its contradictions, in all
its paradoxes. When with in all the paradoxes you come to the point of
balance, there is trust. Trust is a perfume of balance, the fragrance of
If you really want to attain to trust, drop all your beliefs. They will not
help. A believing mind is a stupid mind; a trusting mind has pure
intelligence in it. A believing mind is a mediocre mind; a trusting mind
becomes perfect. Trust makes perfect.
And the difference between belief and trust is simple. I am not talking
about the dictionary meaning of the words -- in the dictionary it may be so:
belief means trust, trust means faith, faith means belief -- I am talking
about existence. In an existential way belief is borrowed, trust is yours.
Belief you believe in but doubt exists just underneath. Trust has no doubt
element in it; it is simply devoid of doubt. Belief creates a division in
you: a part of your mind believes, a part of your mind denies. Trust is a
unity in your being, your totality.
But how can your totality trust unless you have experienced it? The God of
Jesus won't do, the God of my experience won't do for you, the God of
Buddha's experience won't do -- it has to be your experience. And if you
carry beliefs you will come again and again to experiences which don't fit
the belief, and then there is the tendency of the mind not to see those
experiences, not to take note of them because they are very disturbing. They
destroy your belief and you want to cling to your belief. Then you become
more and more blind to life -- belief becomes a blindfold on the eyes.
Trust opens the eyes; trust has nothing to lose.
Trust means whatsoever is real is real -- "I can put my desires and wishes
aside, they don't make any difference to reality. They can only distract my
mind from reality."
If you have a belief and you come against an experience which the belief
says is not possible, or, the experience is such that you have to drop the
belief, what are you going to choose -- the belief or the experience? The
tendency of the mind is to choose the belief, to forget about the
experience. That's how you have been missing many opportunities when God has
knocked at your door.
Remember -- it is not only you who are seeking truth -- truth is also
seeking you. Many times the hand has come very close to you, it has almost
touched you, but you shrugged yourself away. It was not fitting with your
belief and you chose to choose your belief. (Ref. 8)
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