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Chapter 8: The Psychology of the Buddhas

No, not yet. There are many problems. For the third psychology to be established the first two need to be completed. If you make a three story house, the first two have to be completed, and only then can the third be raised. In the past, the psychology for the pathological man never existed, the first sort of psychology never existed. Nobody bothered to enter into the realm of mental disease, particularly not in the East. Nobody bothered because the disease could be got rid of without getting into it. There was no need to analyze it, there was no need to travel into the pathological mind, there was no need to do anything about it. Certain techniques existed and still those techniques exist. You could simply cut it out.

For example, in Japan whenever there is a madman, some body gone neurotic, they take him to the Zen monastery, they take him to the religious people of the town. This has been one of the oldest ways: take him to the religious man. And what is done in the monastery? - nothing. In fact, nothing is done. When a madman is brought to the monastery, they don’t bother to analyze, diagnose. They don’t bother to think about what type of disease this is. There is no need because the disease can be dropped. They put the madman into an isolated room far away from the monastery, just in the corner, at the back. His needs are fulfilled: food is given and whatsoever he needs, but nobody talks about him, nobody pays any attention to his madness. The East knows that the more you pay attention to it, the more you feed the madness. The whole monastery remains indifferent, as if nobody has come in.

Indifference is one of the techniques, because a madman really needs much attention. It may be that he became mad just to get attention. That’s why psychoanalysis cannot be of much help, because the psychoanalyst gives so much attention to the mad, the neurotic, the psychotic, that he starts thriving on that attention: for years together somebody is paying attention to you.

You must have observed that neurotic people always force others to be attentive towards them. They will do anything if they can get the attention. In a Zen monastery they don’t give any attention, they remain indifferent. Nobody bothers and nobody thinks that he is mad, because if the whole group thinks that he is mad that thinking creates vibrations that help the madman to remain mad. For three weeks, four weeks, the madman is allowed to be with himself. Needs are fulfilled but no attention is given, no special attention; indifference is maintained. Nobody thinks that he is mad. And within three or four weeks, the madman, remaining with himself, by and by gets better. The madness subsides.

Even now they do the same in Zen monasteries. Western psychologists have become aware of the fact. Many have gone to Japan to study what is happening, and they have been simply wonder-struck. They work for years and nothing happens; and in a Zen monastery, without doing anything, the madman left to himself, and things start happening. Madmen need isolation. They need rest, they need indifference, they need inattention, and the waves that were rising in their minds, the tensions, simply dissolve and disappear. After the fourth week the man is ready to leave the monastery. He thanks the people there, the abbot and others, and leaves. He is completely okay.

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