Chapter 35: Turning Inward toward the Real
Dissatisfactions are felt, miseries are felt, pains are felt. Whenever you suffer, you become the suffering. That is why the whole life becomes a hell. You have never felt the positive; you have always felt the negative. Life is not such a misery as we have made it; misery is just our interpretation. A Buddha is happy here and now, in this very life. A Krishna is dancing and playing on a flute. In this very life here and now, where we are in misery, Krishna is dancing. Life is neither misery, nor is life bliss. Bliss and misery are our interpretations, our attitudes, our approaches, how we look at it. It is your mind - how it takes it.
Remember, and analyze your own life. Have you ever taken account of happy moments, of contents, of satisfactions, of blissful glimpses? You have not taken any account, but you have taken every account of your pain, suffering, misery, and you go on accumulating. You are an accumulated hell, and this is your own choice. No one else is forcing you into this hell; this is your own choice. The mind takes the negative, accumulates it and becomes negative itself. And then this is a self-perpetuating misery. The more negatives you have within the mind, the more negative you become, the more negatives are accumulated. The similar attracts the similar, and this has been for lives and lives. You miss everything because of your negative approach.
This technique gives you a positive approach, a total reversal to the ordinary mind and its process. Wherever satisfaction is found, in whatever act, actualize this, feel it, become one with it. Don’t take it just as a passing phase. The satisfaction can become a glimpse of a greater positive existence.
Everything is just a window. If you become identified with a pain, you are looking from a window, and the window of pain, of suffering, opens only towards hell. If you are one with a satisfactory moment, a blissful moment, an ecstatic moment, you are opening another window. The existence is the same, but your windows are different.
Wherever satisfaction is found, in whatsoever act, actualize it - wherever! No conditions: wherever! You see a friend and you feel happy; you meet your lover or beloved and you feel happy: actualize this. Be happiness in that moment, and make that happiness a door. Then you are changing the mind, and you will start accumulating happiness. Your mind will turn positive, and the same world will look different.
One Zen monk, Bokuju, is reported to have said, “The world is the same, but nothing is the same because the mind changes. Everything remains the same, but nothing is the same because I am not the same.”
You go on trying to change the world, and no matter what you do the world will remain the same because you remain the same. You can get a bigger house, you can get a bigger car, you can get a more beautiful wife or a husband, but nothing will change. The bigger house will not be bigger. The beautiful wife or husband will not be more beautiful. The bigger car will remain the smaller one because you are the same. Your mind, your approach, your ways of seeing are the same. You go on changing things without changing yourself. So only a miserable person leaves a hut and moves to a palace, but the miserable person remains the same. He was miserable in a hut; now he will be miserable in a palace. This misery may be palatial, but he will be miserable.