Chapter 8: He Alone Wins Who Does Not Want to Win
It is good to understand if the divine vision, once gifted, can be withdrawn. Divine vision, really, can neither be given as a gift nor withdrawn. It happens in some moments and it can be lost again. It is really a happening. In some moments you touch the peak of your consciousness where everything is seen so clearly. But it is very arduous to live on that peak; it takes millions of lives to deserve it, to earn this blessing. Ordinarily one has to come down from that peak again and again. It is as if you jump off the ground. and for a moment, like a bird on the wing, you are out of the gravitational pull of the earth - but only for a moment. With the passing of the moment you are back on the ground again. But you have known how it is to fly like a bird on the wing for a moment.
In the same way consciousness has its own field of gravitation, its magnetic pull which keeps it down. In a particular situation your consciousness is able to take such a high jump that, like a flash of lightning, you can have a glimpse of the immense, and then you return to the earth. For sure, now you are not the same person you were before you had the glimpse. You cannot be the same again, because even a momentary glimpse of the immense is enough to change you; you are now a different person. But the glimpse is again lost.
It is as though I am walking on a dark night and there is a sudden flash of lightning which enables me to see clearly the flowers and the hills before me. With the lightning gone, the flowers and the hills are again enveloped in darkness. But now I am not the same person I was before the lightning occurred, although I am back in the same darkness. It is even worse. Before the lightning, I was not aware that there are hills and flowers and trees, but now I am aware that they are there. Although the darkness is as deep as before, now it cannot deprive me of my awareness of the hills and trees and flowers; now they have become parts of my being. Whether I see them again or not, I know in the depths of my being that they are there, that they exist. Now the fragrance of the flowers will reach me even in the dark, and the winds will bring me a message from the hills. Darkness can hide them from me, but it cannot erase my awareness that they exist.
No one can give you the divine vision, but Krishna seems to be telling Arjuna that he will give it to him. This is what creates difficulty for you. Really, human language suffers from obscurity; it still lacks clarity of expression. We have to use words that don’t have the vitality to convey what one really means to say. One often says, “I gave so and so my love.” But love cannot be given, it is not a commodity. Love simply happens; it is neither given nor taken. But putting it into words, a mother says, “I give so much love to my son.” It is a wrong statement. Love has just happened between the mother and her son.
It is the same linguistic clumsiness that has led to this question with regard to Krishna’s statement about divine vision. It is nothing more than that. Like love, it happens; it cannot be given or taken. And like love, it can also be lost. Heights are attained and lost; it is difficult to stay at great heights. Hillary and Tensing climbed Everest, hoisted a flag there, and then returned to the plains. It is hard to live on Everest, or on any great height for that matter. It is possible, however, that some day we will manage to live on Everest for a long period. But to live at the peak of consciousness is still more difficult, tremendously difficult. But it is not impossible. People like Krishna live there. People like Arjuna once in a while leap to it, see it and drop back to the earth.