Chapter 9: Techniques for Centering
Head, heart, navel - these are the three centers. The navel is the given center, the original one. Heart can be developed, and it is good to develop it for many reasons. Reason is necessary to develop also, but reason must not be developed at the cost of the heart - because if reason is developed at the cost of the heart then you miss the link and you cannot come to the navel again. The development is from reason to existence to being. Let us try to understand it in this way.
The center of the navel is in being; the center of the heart is in feeling; the center of the head is in knowing. Knowing is the farthest from being - feeling is nearer. If you miss the feeling center, then it is very difficult to create a bridge between reason and being - really, very difficult. That is why a loving person may realize his at-homeness in the world more easily than a person who lives through intellect.
Western culture has basically emphasized the head center. That is why in the West a deep concern is felt for man. And the deep concern is with his homelessness, his emptiness, his uprootedness. Simone Weil wrote a book, The Need for Roots. Western man feels uprooted, as if with no roots. The reason is because only the head has become the center. The heart has not been trained, it is missing.
The beating of the heart is not your heart, it is just a physiological function. So if you feel the beating, do not misunderstand that you have a heart. Heart is something else. Heart means the capacity to feel; head means the capacity to know. Heart means the capacity to feel, and being means the capacity to be one - to be one with something. the capacity to be one with something.
Religion is concerned with the being; poetry is concerned with the heart; philosophy and science are concerned with the head. These two centers, heart and head, are peripheral centers, not real centers, just false centers. The real center is the navel, the hara. How to attain it again? Or how to realize it?
Ordinarily it happens only sometimes - rarely, accidentally it happens - that you come near the hara. That moment will become a very deep, blissful moment. For example, in sex sometimes you come near the hara, because in sex your mind, your consciousness moves downwards again. You have to leave your head and fall down. In a deep sexual orgasm, sometimes it happens that you are near your hara. That is why there is so much fascination about sex. It is not really sex which gives you the blissful experience, really, it is the hara.
In falling down toward sex you pass through the hara, you touch it. But for modern man even that has become impossible, because for modern man even sex is a cerebral affair, a mental affair. Even sex has gone into the head; he thinks about it. That is why there are so many films, so many novels, so much literature, pornography and the like. Man thinks about sex, but that is absurdity. Sex is an experience; you cannot think about it. And if you start thinking about it, it will be more and more difficult to experience it because it is not a concern of the head at all. Reason is not needed.