Chapter 10: The Master of Silence
Then he worked much - he worked at long distances. The plant was removed one thousand miles; his plant, the plant he had helped to grow, had watered, loved, was removed one thousand miles away. Here he thought against the plant and there, one thousand miles away, the plant became disturbed. So now, it could be scientifically recorded that the plant’s emotions were disturbed. Not only this, but if you think of cutting one plant all the other plants surrounding the area become emotionally disturbed. And not only that: if someone has cut a plant and he comes into the garden, all the plants become disturbed, because this man is not good and they carry the memory. Whenever this man enters the garden the whole garden feels that an evil person is coming in.
Now a few scientists think that plants can be used for telepathic communication, because they are more sensitive than the human mind; and a few scientists think that plants can be used to receive communications from other planets, because our other instruments are not so refined.
In the East it has always been known that a flower is the most receptive thing. When Buddha looked at the flower and continued to look at the flower, something of him was transferred to that flower. Buddha entered the flower. The quality of his being, the alertness, the awareness, the peace, the ecstasy, the inner dance, touched the flower. With Buddha looking at the flower, so at ease, at home, without any desire, the flower must have danced in its inner being. He looked to transfer something to the flower - one thing to be understood. Only the flower and he existed for a long period of time. The whole world dropped. Only Buddha and the flower were there. The flower entered Buddha’s being, and Buddha entered the flower’s being.
Then the flower was given to Mahakashyapa. It is not just a flower now, it carries buddhahood. It carries the inner quality of Buddha’s being. And why to Mahakashyapa? There were other great scholars, ten great disciples; Mahakashyapa was only one, and he was included in the ten only because of this story, otherwise he would never have been included.
Nothing much is known about Mahakashyapa. There were great scholars like Sariputta there - you could not find a more keen intellect - and Moggalayan was also there, a very great scholar. He had all the Vedas in his memory, and nothing that had ever been written was unknown to him. A great logician in his own right, he had thousands of disciples. And there were others - Ananda was there, Buddha’s cousin-brother, who for forty years was continuously moving with Buddha. But no, someone who was unknown before, Mahakashyapa, suddenly became most important. The whole gestalt changed. Whenever Buddha was speaking, Sariputta was the significant man because he could understand words more than anybody else; and when Buddha was arguing, Moggalayan was the significant man. Nobody thought about Mahakashyapa very much. He remained in the crowd, he was just part of the crowd.
But when Buddha became silent, the whole gestalt changed. Now Moggalayan and Sariputta were not significant; they simply dropped out of existence, as if they were not there. They just became a part of the crowd. A new man, Mahakashyapa, became the most important. A new dimension opened. Everybody was restless, thinking, “Why is Buddha not speaking? Why is he keeping silent? What is going to happen? When will it end?” They became uncomfortable, restless.