Chapter 2: Happy for No Reason
The West cannot understand it. They think these are just myths, stories, they are not true. That is not the point. Who said they are true? They are truer than truth. They are not just true. They are truth told in beautiful language so that people who cannot understand truth, even they can understand it. They are cosmic gossips. They are indicators of something beyond the known, beyond the word, beyond the expressed. They are fingers raised towards the ineffable.
“If you take gossiping out of social interaction, it seems little is left except uncomfortable silences.”
Right now it will be so, because your social interacting is nothing but gossiping, criticizing, slandering. Your social interaction is nothing but subtle violence. If it is left, you don’t know how to be silent. It will be uncomfortable, it will be embarrassing.
First learn how to be silent. Learn it with trees and rocks. They are silent and they are not uncomfortable at all. Learn it from the stars. They are silent, not embarrassed at all. Learn what positive silence is. Be meditative; it will come to you.
And then by and by stop destructive gossiping. Gossip about something beautiful. Gossip something about the really significant. Let your gossiping also be a sort of communication for that which cannot be communicated. And of course you will never feel embarrassed, and your social interaction will not be just an impotent gesture; it will be real communication.
I have heard:
Mulla Nasruddin’s wife told him that he must stop exaggerating about “the one that got away” and said that next time he did it in company, she would cough to remind him.
Some friends called on them shortly afterwards and Nasruddin, after behaving himself for a while, suddenly said, “I had this fish on my line last week. It must have been six feet long.” Just here his wife coughed loudly. “And,” continued Nasruddin, “half an inch wide.”
I’m not saying to change it so abruptly. Go slowly. I’m not saying to be so abruptly dramatic. First learn silence, then learn what beautiful gossiping is, mm? Then start practicing it. Not only you will be benefited by it, others will also be benefited by it.
All beautiful poetry is gossiping. All beautiful story-telling is gossiping. Tell beautiful stories, invent beautiful stories, be a little creative. And that very thing will change your relationship with others. Your relationship will not be just a formality, it will become really intimate.
What did we do to deserve you as our guru, our master?
I don’t know anything about you, but I must have done terrible karma to deserve you!