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Chapter 6: Sannyas Is for Lions

But effacing oneself is dangerous. It means you have accepted already that the ego is there and it has to be effaced. You have accepted an illusion, and now you want to destroy it. You have missed the first point. You have accepted that the rope is a snake, and now you are trying to kill the snake. You will be in great trouble. You will never be able to kill the snake, because in the first place there is none. You can go on beating the rope, but what about the snake? The snake will remain there.

The snake exists in your illusion; the snake does not exist outside, otherwise you could have killed it. But how can you kill a snake which is not? You are fighting with a shadow, and you are bound to be defeated.

Let this fundamental be remembered always: if you fight with anything false, you will be defeated. The false cannot be defeated, because it is false. How can you defeat something which is non-existential? There is no way. The only way is bring light and see.

Ihi passiko, come and see! In that very seeing, the snake is not found. The rope is there, the snake has disappeared. Now there is no need to efface yourself, no need to fight.

There are millions of people who try to become humble, but their whole effort is nonsense, sheer stupidity.

Once a man asked me, “Are you an egoist or a humble person?”

I said. “Neither. Neti neti, neither this nor that. I cannot be either.”

He said, “What are you talking about? One has to be either an egoist or a humble person.”

I said, “You don’t understand. You know nothing; you have never gone within yourself. If you are humble, you are an egoist standing on his head. Humbleness is an expression of the ego. I am neither. I am simply whatsoever I am, neither humble nor egoistic, because I have seen that there is no ego. How can there be humbleness then?”

Humbleness is diluted ego. But if there is no ego, how can you dilute it? If there is no snake, how can you take the poisonous teeth of the snake away? That’s what humbleness is. The poisonous teeth have been removed from the snake; now the snake cannot hurt, now the snake cannot bite, now the snake cannot do any harm - but the snake is there.

Those teeth were false, because the snake itself is false.

Buddha is neither egoistic nor humble. Both are impossible for the man of understanding. The ignorant person can be egoistic, can be humble - both are aspects of ignorance. And the ignorant person can try to efface the ego, because it is so respectable not to have the ego. One becomes a saint by effacing the ego, one attains great prestige and power by effacing the ego. But it is the same game; the game has not changed.

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