Chapter 9: Means and Ends
Where are you seeking - in words, in scriptures? Then one day or other you will become an atheist. A pundit, a scholar, cannot remain a theist for long. Remember, howsoever he knows, whatsoever he knows about the Bible and the Gita and the Koran, a scholar is bound to become an atheist some day or other, because that is the logical consequence of gathering words. Sooner or later he will ask: “Where is God?” No Bible can reply, no Gita can supply the answer. Rather, when Bibles and Gitas and Korans are too much on your mind, you miss the divine - because the whole space in you is filled with too much furniture. God cannot move, he may not be able to make any contact with you if the mind is too wordy. Then it is impossible to listen, and if you cannot listen, how can you pray? It is impossible to wait, words are too impatient, they are knocking from within to get out.
I have heard.
Once it happened. At three o’clock one morning Mulla Nasruddin phoned the bartender and said, “What time is the bar going to open?”
The bartender said, “This is no time to inquire such a thing. You are a regular customer, Nasruddin, and you know well that not before nine in the morning do we open. Go to sleep and wait until nine.”
But after ten minutes he phoned again and he said, “This is urgent. Tell me when the bar is going to open.”
Now the bartender felt annoyed. He said, “What are you doing? I told you, not a single minute before nine. And don’t go on phoning me again and again.”
But after ten minutes he phoned again. The bartender said, “Now you really are something. Have you gone mad? You will have to wait until nine.
Nasruddin said, “You don’t understand. I am locked in the bar and I want to get out!”
If your mind is too burdened with words, theories, scriptures, they will go on knocking: “Give way, we want to get out!” And when you want to get out, God cannot enter. When the mind wants to get out, it is not open for anything that is incoming. It is closed, it is one-way traffic - two-way traffic is not possible.
When you are aggressive through words going out, nothing can penetrate you, neither love, nor meditation, nor existence. And all that is beautiful happens as an ingoing process. When you are silent, no words knocking within to get out, when you are waiting. In that moment of waiting beauty happens, love happens, prayerfulness happens, godliness happens. But if a man is too addicted to words, he will miss it all. In the end he will have a long collection of words and theories, logic, everything - but nothing is worthwhile because the content is missing.
You have the net, the trap, but no fish are there. If you had really caught the fish you would have thrown away the net immediately. Who bothers? If you have really used the ladder, you forget it. Who thinks about it? You have transcended it, it has been used.
So whenever a man really comes to know, knowledge is forgotten. That’s what we call wisdom. A wise man is one who has been able to unlearn the knowledge. He simply drops all that is nonessential.
Says Chuang Tzu:
Where can I find a man
who has forgotten words?
He is the one I would like to talk to.