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Chapter 24: Doubt or Faith, Life or Death: The Bases of Different Paths

First think about your type and then choose methods. In these one hundred and twelve methods, many are for the intellectual type, many are for the emotional type. But do not think that because you are a mixed type you have to follow both. That will create more confusion, and you will be divided so deeply that you may even go mad, schizophrenic; you may become split. Do not do that.

The second question:

To know death is certain, you said yesterday. This seems to be the approach of buddha, who was life-negative. But Tantra’s approach is life affirmative, not negative, so how can this death orientation be used in Tantra?

Buddha is not really life-negative. He appears so: he appears to be live-negative because he focuses on death. To us he appears to be in love with death, but he is not. On the contrary, he is in love with eternal life. To find that life which is deathless, he focuses on death. Death is not his love, he has to focus on death just to find something which is beyond death. And Buddha says that if there is nothing beyond death then life is futile - but only then is life futile. He never says life is futile; he says that if nothing is beyond death, then life is futile. And your life is futile, he says, because your life is not beyond death. Whatsoever you think is your life is just a part of death. You are fooled by that. You think it is life and it is nothing but death on its way.

A man is born - he is on his way to die. Whatsoever he becomes, whatsoever he achieves, possesses, nothing will help: he is moving toward death. This so-called life is moving toward death. How can we call it life? That is Buddha’s question. A life which moves toward death, how call it life? Life which implies death inevitably is just hidden death, not life; it is gradual death. By and by you are dying, and you go on thinking that you are living.

Right now you feel you are living, but you are dying. Every moment you are losing life and gaining death. A tree is known by its fruits, Buddha says, so your tree of life cannot be called life because death is the fruit. A tree is known by its fruit, and if on your tree of life only fruits of death come, then you were deceived by the tree. And another thing: if a tree gives a particular fruit, it shows that that particular fruit was the seed of the tree; otherwise that particular fruit could not come out of the tree. So if life gives the fruit of death, death must have been the seed.

Let us understand this. You are born, and you think that birth is the beginning - it is not. Before this birth, you died in another life. That death was the seed of this birth, and then again, death will become the fruit. And that fruit will become the seed for another birth.

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