Chapter 21: Sunrise in the Soviet Union, Sunset in America
How can the world ever become a paradise when all enlightened people always choose not to be born again?
One of the most fundamental things about the enlightened person is that he attains to enlightenment by dropping all choices; he attains it in a choiceless awareness. After enlightenment there is no way for him to choose anything.
It is not that he chooses not to be born; it is simply the law of existence that once you are enlightened you do not need the body and the mind and the whole imprisonment which we call life. It is not that the enlightened person goes into nonexistence; he becomes part of existence itself - just like a fragrance, spread all over. In this way he helps the world to become a paradise. The more enlightened people disappear in the world as fragrance, the more light it will become.blissful, ecstatic.
And the question of making life a paradise is for you, not for the enlightened person. For him it is already a paradise. Even in this whole misery, and anguish, he remains above and beyond. He showers his love and compassion, but he is not touched by the anguish and anxiety, the misery and the hell that people are living in. His heart is full of compassion for them, and he does everything to help them to come out of their darkness.
Paradise is not a location; it is not part of geography. Paradise is a certain attitude towards existence; it is a way of life. The same energy that becomes misery becomes bliss; the same energy that creates jealousy and anger is transformed into love, into peace, into silence. It is not a question of only the enlightened person changing the world into a paradise; everybody has to change it by changing himself.
All those people who have been dreaming of a better world can be divided into two categories. The major part of the dreamers who want the world to become a paradise think in terms of changing the world - its social structure, its economics, its politics. These people have been working for thousands of years.
Their intentions are immensely beautiful, but they are ignorant about the basic fact that except for the individual, there is no world. You cannot change the world because the world is only a word, it is not a reality. If you go in search to meet the world you will always meet the individual. The individual is the reality. It is not just a word; it is existential.
The small part, the minor part of dreamers who want to bring a utopia into the world have a totally different approach. Their approach is to teach you how to be silent, how to be peaceful, how to beautify existence around you, how to take everything and change it.to create a harmony, an accord.