Chapter 7: On the Utility of Not-Being
That’s why my insistence is always on a dancing meditation. It is not only an outward dance. The outward is nothing but a training for the inner. You dance outwardly, you go on dancing outwardly - by and by an inner dance arises and then you can dance inwardly and move toward the innermost center, the very core of being. Remember - death can be crossed only by dance, death can be won over only by a deep laughter. One can carry one’s cross only happily, blissfully, ecstatically. Sad, serious, it will become such a burden. Your own emptiness will become such a burden that you will want to escape from it, you will come out and move into the world.
Learn how to dance outwardly, just as a training, as a discipline, so that the inner dance becomes possible. It is a mood, a climate - dance is a climate, it has nothing to do with any activity of dancing. It is a climate, an inner bubbling of bliss, an inner throbbing of bliss. Only on that boat can the part which is very very difficult for you to cross be crossed. Otherwise one escapes. The moment you face your inner emptiness you escape, you become scared to death. That’s why so many people never think about themselves. They think of the whole world, they worry for the whole world, but they never think about themselves, because that point seems to be touching a wound inside. They are afraid.
Don’t be afraid. The existence of things is good; you can profit by it, but it is not enough. Unless you learn now to be served by emptiness also, you have not learned the art, the total art. If you know only how to live, you know only half the art; if you know also how to die, then you know the whole art - and the whole art will make you whole.
Remember, until you die you cannot be reborn. As you are you have to pass through death. And you are clinging too much to life. That won’t help - death will come. But death comes in two ways. One way, the usual way it comes is you are clinging to life and it comes as the enemy; you fight with it, you resist it, you do everything that you can do to avoid it. But how can you avoid it? The day you were born death became certain; every birth carries the seed of death. In fact, in life nothing else is certain but that. Everything is at the most probable, but death is certain. It will happen. You can avoid it, you can postpone it a little, but that doesn’t change the situation. It will happen. One way to face death is as the enemy, which is the way ninety-nine percent of people face it - and miss it. Because of their enmity they cannot use it, they cannot be profited by it, they cannot be served by death.
There is another way: to accept death as a friend, to accept it as an innermost part of your being, to enjoy it, to welcome it, to be ready for it and when it comes to embrace it. Suddenly the quality of death changes. It is no more death, it becomes a door. It no longer destroys you; on the contrary, you are served by it. It leads you to the deathless.
Die - you will have to die. But die gracefully. I am not saying die like a stoic, I am not saying die like a very controlled man. No, I’m saying die gracefully, beautifully, as if a friend is coming, knocks at your door, and you are happy. You embrace the friend and invite him in, you have been waiting for him so long..