Chapter 14: Just by Celebrating
But he said, “They will not serve the purpose; they do not point to the moon. They will be beautiful statues, I have made all those statues before, but now I can make only that which is a teaching - and it will be invisible to millions of people, almost to all.”
Whenever I used to come to Bombay. When I came permanently he had died, but before, that whenever I used to come, I made it a point to go and visit the man. He worked on Juhu beach at that time. During the day it was more silent there. People only came in the evening and by that time his statue was ready - the whole day, no disturbance.
I said, “You can make statues. Why don’t you work on marble? They will remain forever.”
He said, “Nothing is permanent,” that is a quotation of Buddha, “and these statues represent Gautam Buddha better than any marble statue because a marble statue has a certain permanence and these statues are momentary: just a strong wind and they are gone, a wave of the ocean and they are gone. A child comes running and stumbles on the statue, and it is gone.”
I said, “Don’t you feel bad when you have been working the whole day, and the statue was just going to be completed, and something happens and the whole day’s work is gone?”
He said, “No. Because the whole of existence is momentary, there is no question of frustration. And I enjoyed making it, and if an ocean wave enjoys unmaking it, then two persons enjoyed! I enjoyed making it, the wave enjoyed unmaking it, so in existence there has been double the quantity of joy. Why should I be frustrated? The wave has as much power on the sand as I have; perhaps it has more.”
As I was talking to him he said, “You are a little strange, because nobody talks to me. People simply throw rupees. They enjoy the statue, but nobody enjoys me. When you come I feel so blissful that there is somebody who enjoys me, and who is not only concerned with the statue, but with its inner meaning - why I am making it. It’s because I cannot do anything else. My whole life I have been making statues; that is my only art. And now I am surrendered to existence; now existence can use me.”
But these people will remain unrecognized. A dancer may be a buddha, a singer may be a buddha, but these people will not be recognized, for the simple reason that their way of doing things cannot become a teaching. It cannot help people really to come out of their sleep. But they are doing their best. Whatever they can do, they are doing their best.