Chapter 3: From Belief toward Truth
Friends have asked many questions.
One friend asks: “You say that truth is not obtained from words, much less from scriptures and from gurus, then what is the purport of your talk?”
Truth will not be obtained from my talk - please understand this well. Nobody’s words can convey truth. If a thorn gets embedded in your foot, you can use a second thorn to remove it; but once the thorn is out both become equally redundant. My words will not deliver truth, but they can act like the thorn to remove the thorn of illusion of knowledge that you hold as your own. When this happens, my words will have served their purpose and become equally useless.
Words, be they from anybody, do not convey truth. But if words delete words; if words are erased and if the mind is emptied so that words have no hold on it, then of itself the mind attains truth; for truth is nowhere outside, it is within each one of us. Once the mind gives up its habit of looking outward, truth is not difficult to attain. As long as we look to gurus we look outside; as long as we hold on to shastras, we are looking outward. As long as we cling to the cognition of other’s words, that which is attained in the “no word,” silent states remains unknown.
A poet once went to the seashore. It was early morning: The sun’s cool radiance filled the sky. The breeze came with a touch of the waves. The joy of the scene filled the poet’s heart too. Delighted he began to dance. Oh the bliss, the joy!.but his thoughts went back to his beloved lying in a hospital. How he wished that she were here beside him to share this beautiful morning. He was a poet, so the scene affected him more. Tears welled up in his eyes but soon he wiped them away. “What if I filled a casket with this beautiful morning and sent it to her?”
He brought a box and lovingly opened its lid to the wafting breeze and the dancing rays. He then sealed it with care and sent it to his beloved, explaining to her how much he had missed her in those lovely surroundings, but that he was sending them to her in a box.
The letter reached: so did the box, but when she opened it there were no rays of the sun, no cool breeze, no glory of the morning that her lover had described. It was only an empty box.
What is at the seashore cannot be carried in a box; and also there is no way to fill the experience of the ocean of truth in the chest of words.