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Chapter 5: First Freedom, then Expression

I am not promising you anything. But by following my suggestions, you may achieve something. I am saying that by doing such and such a thing, you will grow. That is not following me. By doing something you may gain much, but the whole responsibility remains with you. I am not going to feel responsible for you or anyone else. If you fall, you fall. If you rise, you rise. When you achieve something, you need not even be thankful to me; you can just forget me. That is the only thankfulness that can be given. If you have to be thankful to me when something is achieved then “the other” will be there. Then, if you don’t achieve anything, I am responsible.

You are not to follow me - really. The very word follow is not good. To be a disciple is not to be a follower. To be a disciple only means to learn: to learn, to be a learner, to be a receiver - not to be a follower, because a follower can never learn. Before he learns, he begins to follow. A follower means that you have decided that the other person is right “.and I have to follow him.” The decision to follow has come first.

A disciple is something quite different. He is not a follower, he is a learner. He has come to learn. He has come to no conclusions. With a conclusion, you become closed. Then you just close your eyes and follow me.

To follow someone you have to close your eyes, otherwise every moment there will be doubts, every moment there will be something that you can’t follow. So a follower has to be really blind. A blind follower is the only follower, the only bona fide follower. If your eyes are open, you cannot be a follower.

By disciple I mean a learner, and by learner I mean one who is open, one who is without enclosures, one who is ready to inquire. This opening creates receptivity and makes you a disciple. If you are near a mirror with this open consciousness, many things will begin to happen without any discipline being imposed. Neither the master is trying to change you nor are you trying to change yourself.

Just by having an open mind and being with a mirrorlike man, things will begin to happen. They go on happening and much is transformed, much is changed without any effort to change it. This is what the Indian term satsang means. The word means “in communion with truth” - in communion with someone who has become the truth.

What you talk about can mean so much to so many people. Your message has to spread, it has to bring about a spiritual explosion. That seems to be the only hope there is for us today. How do you intend to let your ideas grow and spread and blossom; flower into something more universal, more accepted, more usual?

This is a very difficult question. Difficult because, as I see it, the moment you begin to organize a thing, it begins to die. The moment you begin to propagate a thing, it becomes a dead dogma. The moment you say that everyone should live according to this, you become a very great enemy - with good, warm wishes!

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