Chapter 6: The Power That Shall Make You Nothing
The tenth sutra:
Desire power ardently.
And that power which the disciple shall covet is that which shall make him appear as nothing in the eyes of men.
We will be moving more and more into contradictions. The language of religion is bound to be contradictory. On the face of it, it looks irrational. In a way it is, because it goes beyond reason, it transcends reason. This sutra says: Desire power ardently - but that power which makes you nothing. You become a non-being.
We desire power to become something. The power that wealth can give, the power that politics can give, the power that prestige can give. We desire power to be something, and this sutra says: Desire power ardently - but that power which makes you nobody, nothing.
There are two types of power. One: that which you can accumulate from others - that which can be given to you by others or can be taken by you from others. It depends on others. The power that depends on others will make you somebody in the eyes of others. You will remain the same as you were, but in the eyes of others you will become somebody. This somebodyness is what is meant by the ego - and the ego is the barrier.
Desire that power - the second type - that allows you to feel that you are nobody. It is difficult to feel “I am nobody.” Everyone thinks that he is somebody, whether others agree or not. Everyone thinks that he is somebody. This is ordinariness: every ordinary mind thinks that he is somebody. The moment you come to realize that you are nobody, you have become extraordinary, rare, a unique flower, incomparable.
This feeling of nobodyness creates space within you.
The ego dissolves, your false center is no longer there. You have become roomy, now the eternal can enter you. Now, this space, this emptiness, can allow existence to flower in you.
You are filled with your somebodyness: you are this and that. The mind is so cunning that you can even create this somebodyness through nobodyness. I will tell you an anecdote:
An emperor, a Mohammedan emperor, was praying in the mosque on a religious day. He was talking to the divine and saying, “I am nobody. I am nothing. Have mercy on me.”
Then suddenly he heard a beggar who was also praying nearby. He was also saying, “I am nobody. Have mercy on me.”