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Chapter 1: When the Shoe Fits

Nothing fails like the ego in the ultimate; nothing succeeds like the ego in this world. In the world of matter nothing succeeds like the ego; in the world of consciousness nothing fails like the ego. The case is just the opposite - and it has to be so because the dimension is just the opposite.

Buddha failed absolutely. After six years he was completely frustrated, and when I say completely, then I mean completely. Not even a single fragment of hope remained; he became absolutely hopeless. In that hopelessness he dropped all effort. He had already dropped the world, he had already left his kingdom; all that belongs to this visible world he had left, renounced.

Now after six years of strenuous effort he also left all that belongs to the other world. He was in a complete vacuum - empty. That night his sleep was of a different quality because there was no ego; a different quality of silence arose because there was no effort; a different quality of being happened to him that night because there was no dreaming.

If there is no effort, nothing is incomplete - then there is no need to dream. A dream is always to complete something: something which has remained incomplete in the day will be completed in a dream because mind has a tendency to complete everything. If it is not complete then the mind will always be uneasy. Effort is put into many things and if they remain incomplete, a dream is needed. When there is desire, there is bound to be dreaming, because desiring is dreaming - dreaming is just a shadow of desiring.

That night, when there was nothing to be done - this world was already useless, now the other world was also useless - all motivation to move ceased. There was nowhere to go, and there was no one to go anywhere. That night sleep became samadhi, it became satori; it became the ultimate thing that can happen to a man. Buddha flowered that night and in the morning he was enlightened. He opened his eyes, looked at the last star disappearing in the sky, and everything was there. It had always been there, but he had wanted it so much that he couldn’t see it. It had always been there, but he had been moving so much in the future with desire that he could not look at the here and now.

That night there was no desire, no goal, nowhere to go, and no one to go anywhere - all effort ceased. Suddenly he became aware of himself, suddenly he became aware of reality as it is.

Chuang Tzu says from the very beginning: Don’t make any effort. And he is right, because you will never make such a total effort as Buddha. You will never be so frustrated that the effort drops by itself; it will always be incomplete. And your mind will always go on saying, “A little more and something will happen, just a little more.. The goal is near, why are you getting dejected? Just a little more effort is needed, because the goal is coming nearer every day.”

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