Chapter 2: Firewood and Ash
You look.almost three thousand stones fall every day on the earth, all over the earth. You think they are stars falling. Stars are very big, but these are just small stones which have been caught in the gravitational area of the earth, and the earth has pulled them. But the force of the pull is such that even the stones burn up. Most of these three thousand stones never reach to the earth; they are burned before reaching it. A few stones have reached the earth and they have become great sacred places. For example, the Kaaba - the holy place of the Mohammedans; the stone there is an asteroid, it is not of the earth. Just because people saw that big stone coming from the sky.the primitive mind thought it must be from God. And it was coming, burning bright like a sun, so big that it reached to the earth. In many museums you will find those stones, which are called meteorites.
These stones burn up because of the speed. So if we make a vehicle we have to find something which will not burn up at the speed of light. Up to now, there is no indication that we can create a vehicle or any material that can move with the speed of light. And unless we move with the speed of light we cannot reach the nearest star. With that speed in mind, the nearest star is four light years away. It is such a long distance, and our small boats and our airplanes and our rockets are still, in terms of the future, just toys.
But consciousness needs no form to travel, hence it can move with the speed of light. That is the Eastern way of looking at things: you have been around on many planets in many different lives, not only on this earth. Scientists accept that there are at least five hundred planets with life, but there is no communication. All kinds of efforts are being made to have some kind of dialogue or to find some way to know exactly who is there. But that is a limitation of the body.
For a man of consciousness, for a man who is a buddha, there is no limitation. No gravitation prevents him, no heat can burn him. He can travel around in different forms, taking birth on different planets.
The idea of reincarnation is a very great challenge. It is not a question of arguing; it is a question of experiencing in yourself that which cannot be burned, that which remembers having been in other bodies. And if it can move from one body to another body, there is no difficulty for it to move from one planet to another planet. And ultimately it has to move from all forms and disperse itself into the universal being. That is nirvana.
Nirvana is one of the most beautiful words; I don’t think there is any other word in any language which has so much significance and meaning. Ordinarily it simply means blowing out the flame. You have a candle, and the flame is dancing, and you blow it out. Can you answer where the flame has gone? It must have gone somewhere. Nirvana means: your life is just like a flame - when it becomes difficult to live in one body, one form, it simply moves into another form. The other form is determined by its desires, its longings. Be very conscious about your desires and your longings because they are creating the seed of a new form already, without your knowing.
I have experienced, with many people, taking them back to their old forms. And I was surprised - because there is no mention of this fact in any Eastern scripture - that somebody who is a man, when he remembers, he remembers himself as a woman in his past life. If he goes deeper he again remembers himself as a man.