Chapter 6: You Don’t Have to Become a Mountain Climber
Just this much has happened, that you have forgotten something which is very essential. The original root from which the word sin comes, means forgetfulness. To me this is the only sin. All else are just mistakes which can be corrected. And once this sin is dropped, many other mistakes, fallacies, will disappear on their own accord.
A simple strategy is needed; I call it meditation. You can call it anything - awareness, alertness, remembering, watchfulness; the names don’t matter. What matters is that you should be able not to get into the chattering of the mind. Just be a watcher. Don’t participate. Just stand aside and see. Don’t even try to stop its chattering, because even in stopping it you have lost your watchfulness. You have become a participant - unfriendly, but still you have become a participant in the process.
This is a very simple phenomenon once you see the point that you can stand aside and let the mind go. Don’t judge what is going on in the mind as right or wrong. Don’t evaluate, just remain an indifferent watcher. The mind is almost like the traffic on the road. It is none of your concern to think about everybody who is passing on the road; it is just a habit.
You may have heard about a great English linguist, Dr. Johnson, whose dictionary is still used. He had got into the habit, while going for a walk, of touching every electric pole. If by some chance, he would forget to touch and then remember, he would go back. He could not go ahead without touching it because he would feel something is missing. He became so identified with the habit that no friend liked to go with him, even for a morning walk, because it looked so stupid.
“I am standing in the middle of the road and you have gone back to touch an electric pole? Why do you do that?”
And he said, “That’s the question: Why do I do it? But if I don’t do it, it seems something is missing.”
Your mind and your getting involved with it, are not very different. You have to learn to disidentify yourself.
See the mind working.
But don’t make any judgment, either to stop it, or to help it, or to prevent it. In no other sense should you move from your indifference.
You will be surprised: a miracle is waiting for you. The moment you are completely indifferent, standing by the side, the traffic on the road slows down. Less thoughts are coming; bigger gaps between thoughts are happening. And those bigger gaps will give you such a beautiful peace, such silence.
So two things are happening: the mind is slowing down and gaps of silence are enriching you, nourishing you, making you stronger to become disidentified. You have learnt the secret; now the key is in your hand. Watching, finally one comes to a point when one thought leaves and another thought does not come for hours. One is simply watching and the road is empty.
This silence is yours.