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Chapter 7: The Upward Flow of the Mind

This sutra says, “The upward flow of the mind is the water for the divine feet.” No other water will do. It goes even deeper than Mansoor’s blood, because blood is not so deep, it is only skin-deep. You can do wazu with your blood; it is not so deep yet. But the upward-flowing mind is the deepest possibility, for two reasons: because, basically, the mind is downward flowing; basically, the trend is to flow downward because it is easy. The downward flow is always easy. The upward needs effort, the upward needs a fight with the gravitation, the upward means austerity. You cannot flow upward unless you change your nature completely. It is a transformation. The downward flow is but natural, it is in the very nature of things. So mind naturally has a downward flow.

Think of it in this way: if you want to think and concentrate on the divine you will feel much difficulty. The mind will be wavering constantly. You will not be able to concentrate even for a single moment, really. It will be going here and there. Concentration will not be possible, contemplation will not be possible, meditation will not be possible. Mind will not be ready. Even with much effort you will find it is not coming to the divine, towards the divine. But think of sex, and mind is absorbed. No need to concentrate - it concentrates. No need to make any effort, mind flows easily.

Really, we don’t know anything else except sex by which we can understand what concentration means. So it always happens that whenever a person can concentrate on any other thing, sex will not be a problem for him - whenever! Even if he is just a scientist, a research-worker working in his lab, if he can concentrate on his work then sex will not be a problem in his life at all. But if you cannot concentrate on anything else, then your mind will constantly be flowing through the channel of sex.

One thing must be understood: when you are thinking about sex you are totally absorbed, there is no wavering. You even forget that you are thinking about sex. You may remember afterwards. Even this much wavering is not there. You forget that you are different and that this procession of sexual thoughts and images is different, you become one with them. This is what is meant when bhaktas say, “The constant remembering of the divine - without “you,” without “I.” The same phenomenon occurs, only the object changes. It is not sex now; the object becomes the divine. And unless the divine becomes as absorbing as sex naturally is, you cannot flow upward.

So the upward flow is an effort: you have to pull yourself together for it. The downward flow is easy. That’s why, whenever you feel tense, sex becomes a relaxation, a relief - because every tension means that you have been pulling yourself together towards something which is not natural. Then if you can relax to the downward flow you will feel a relief. So in the West particularly, sex has become just a relief, just a relief from tensions. It is, and it is because when you flow downward no effort is needed. So sex is used by many - really by ninety-nine percent of people - as a tranquilizer. If you move in sex then you can sleep well. Why? - because when the mind is flowing downward your whole body is relaxed. Unless you are relaxed in the same way when your mind is going upward, you are not a religious person at all.

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