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Chapter 7: Awareness: The Fire That Burns the Past

The second thing is that when the past account is closed, then you are finished with it: all the records burned, the seeds burned, as if you never existed, as if you are born right this moment; fresh, fresh like the dewdrops in the morning. Then live with awareness. Whatsoever you did with your past memories, now do the same with your present phenomena. You relived with consciousness, now live every moment with consciousness. If you can live every moment with consciousness you don’t accumulate karmas, you don’t accumulate wounds, you don’t accumulate at all. You live an unburdened life.

This is the meaning of sannyas: to live unburdened. Clean the mirror every moment so that no dust gathers, and the mirror will always reflect life as it is. To live an unburdened life, to live a life without any gravitation, to live a life with wings, to live a life of the open sky is to be a sannyasin. In old, ancient books it is said that a sannyasin is a bird of the sky - he is! Just as the birds in the sky don’t leave any footprints, he leaves no footprints. If you walk on the earth, you leave footprints.

A man who is unaware walks on the earth - not only on the earth but on wet earth, leaves footprints - the past. A man of awareness flies like a bird; he leaves no footprints in the sky, nothing is left. If you look backwards there is sky, if you look forward there is sky - no footprints, no memories.

When I say this I don’t mean that if a Buddha knows you, he will not remember you. He has existential memories, but no psychological memories. Mind functions, but it functions as a mechanism, separately. He is not identified with the mind. If you go to Buddha and you say, “I have been here before, do you remember me?” He will remember you. He will remember you better than anybody else because he has no burdens. He has a clean, mirrorlike mind.

You have to understand the difference, because sometimes people think that when a man becomes perfectly alert and aware and the mind is dropped, he will forget everything. No, he does not carry anything, he remembers. His functioning is better now: mind is more clear, mirror like. He has existential memories, but he doesn’t have any psychological memories. The distinction is very subtle.

For example: you came to me yesterday and you were angry at me. You come again today and I will remember you because you had come yesterday. I will remember your face, I will recognize you, but I don’t carry the wound of your anger. That is for you to do. I don’t carry the wound that you were angry. In the first place I never allowed the wound to be there. When you were angry it was something that you were doing to yourself, not to me. It was just a coincidence that I was there. I don’t carry the wound. I will not behave as if you are the same person that was angry yesterday. The anger will not be between me and you. The anger will not color the relationship in the present. If anger colors the present relationship, this is psychological memory; a wound is carried.