Chapter 31: Into the Very Center of Silence
But nobody came to complain to him. He himself asked people, “Are you disappointed in me?”
They said, “No. The moment we became silent, we heard a very still, small voice within our own heart, within our own being. We have come to show our gratitude to you and touch your feet, because we would never have stopped, even for one minute - and would never have been able to discover that God is not in the sky, but within our own being.”
But God does not shout, he whispers - just the way lovers whisper to each other, just as secrets are whispered from one mouth to another ear.
It is said that if you want your wife to listen to what you are saying, don’t say it loudly; just whisper to somebody and she will hear it, certainly. The very whispering makes it clear that something is being hidden from her, something is being kept as a secret, and she is not included in it. But if you are talking loudly, no wife listens. This is an everyday ritual.
I was staying in Kolkatta, and I had to reach a meeting - and I hate to be late. The husband who was driving me was honking the horn for his wife to come. Everybody heard the honking of his horn: “Has he gone mad or what? The car is standing still, nobody is ahead - why is he honking?” And then his wife opened the window and said, “I have said to you at least one thousand times that I am coming in one minute, but you go on honking your horn. Go on - but I will take my time. I will come in one minute!”
I said, “My God, she cannot even say ‘in one minute’ one thousand times!”
The husband said, “You will not be able to understand; you are not a husband.”
I said, “I am not a husband because of people like you. Seeing all around me the situation of husbands, I decided that it is better not to be a husband than to remain in a constant hell.”
Almustafa is saying: You talk when you cease to be at peace with your thoughts. It has a different meaning also. I have given you the meaning that I would like, but you must be made aware of the different meaning. He is saying, “When you are not involved with your thoughts you cannot remain silent.” You have become so accustomed to continually talking inside your mind.
What else is your mind? - a talking machine, most of the time, like a gramophone whose needle has stuck at a certain point so you go on again and again - every day the same ritual, the same thought, the same fear - and it stops at the same point.