Chapter 27: Soundlessness, Soundfulness and Total Awareness
For example, if a small drop of water meets the ocean, you can say that the drop has become nothingness, the drop has lost its individuality, the drop is no more. This is a Buddhist way of saying things. It is good, it is right as far as it goes, because no word goes very far. So as far as it goes, it is good. The drop is no more” that is what is meant by nirvana. The drop has become non-being, it is not. Or you can use Upanishadic terms. The Upanishads will say that the drop has become the ocean. They are also right, because when the boundaries are broken, the drop has become the ocean.
So these are simply attitudes. Buddha likes negative terms, because the moment you say anything positive it becomes limited, it looks limited. When you say that the drop has become the ocean, Buddha will say that the ocean is also finite. The drop remains the drop; it has become a little bigger, that is all. Howsoever bigger makes no difference. Buddha will say that it has become a little bigger, but it remains. The finite has not become infinite. The finite remains finite, so what is the difference? A small drop and a big drop. for Buddha, that is the only difference between ocean and drop - and it is right, mathematically it is so.
So Buddha says that if the drop has become the ocean, then nothing has happened. If you have become a god, then nothing has happened, you have only become a bigger man. If you have become the brahman nothing has happened, you are still finite. So Buddha says that you have to become nothing, you have to become shunya - empty of all boundaries and attributes, empty of everything that you can conceive of, just emptiness. But Upanishadic thinkers will say that even if you are empty you are. If you have become emptiness you are still there, because emptiness exists, emptiness is. Nothingness is also a way of being, a way of existence. So they say, why belabor the point and why unnecessarily use negative terms? It is good to be positive.
It is your choice, but Tantra almost always uses positive terms. The very philosophy of Tantra is positive. It says, do not allow no, do not allow the negation. Tantrikas are the greatest of yea-sayers. They have said yes to everything, so they use positive terms. The sutra says,
Intone a sound, as aum, slowly. As sound enters soundfulness, so do you.
Intone a sound, as aum, slowly. The intoning of a sound is a very subtle science. First you have to intone it loudly, outwardly; then others can hear it. And it is good to start loudly. Why? Because you can also hear it clearly when you intone it loudly; because whatsoever you say it is to others, and this has become a habit. Whenever you are talking you are talking to others, and you hear yourself talk only when you are talking to others. So start from the natural habit.
Intone the sound Aum, then by and by, feel attunement with the sound. When you intone the sound Aum, be filled with it, forget everything else. Become the Aum, become the sound. And it is very easy to become the sound, because sound can vibrate through your body, through your mind, through your whole nervous system. Feel the reverberation of Aum. Intone it, and feel it as if your whole body is being filled with it, every cell is vibrating with it.