Chapter 15: Witnessing: The Base of All Techniques
Drik swaroop awasthanam akshata
To be established in one’s own witnessing nature
is akshat - the unpolished and unbroken rice
used for the worship.
Witnessing is the technique for centering. We discussed centering. A man can live in two ways, he can live from his periphery or he can live from his center. The periphery belongs to the ego and the center belongs to the being. If you live from the ego, you are always related with the other. The periphery is related with the other.
Whatsoever you do is not an action, it is always a reaction. You do it in response to something done to you. From the periphery there is no action, everything is a reaction; nothing comes from your center. In a way, you are just a slave of the circumstances. You are not doing anything; rather, you are being forced to do. From the center the situation changes diametrically. From the center you begin to act. For the first time you begin to exist not as a relata but in your own right.
Buddha is passing a village. Some people are very angry, very much against his teachings. They abuse him, they insult him. The Buddha listens silently and then he says, “If you are finished then allow me to move. I am to reach to the other village and they will be waiting for me. If something is still remaining in your mind, then when I am passing back by this route you can finish it.”
They say, “We have abused you, insulted you. Are you not going to answer?”
Buddha says, “I never react now. What you do is up to you - I never react now. You cannot force me to do something. You can abuse me; that is up to you. I am not a slave. I have become a free man. I act from my center, not from my periphery, and your abuse can touch only the periphery, not my center. My center remains untouched.”
You are so much touched, not because your center is touched, but only because you have no center. You are just the periphery; identified with the periphery. The periphery is bound to be touched by everything - everything that happens. It is just your boundary, so whatsoever happens is bound to touch it.
You don’t have any center. The moment you have a center then you have a distance from your self, you have a distance from your periphery. Someone can abuse the periphery - but not you. You can remain aloof, detached. There is a distance between you and your self. Between you as your periphery and you as the center there is a distance, and that distance cannot be broken by anyone else because no one can penetrate to the center. The outside world can touch you only as the periphery.