Chapter 8: The Conspiracy of the Mystics
For the last week I have known that I have cancer. From that time, except for a few moments of panic and fear, I have felt a deep calmness and relaxation coming into my being. Have I already given up my life, or is this the quietness of acceptance?
We have given up our lives at the very moment when we were born, because the birth is nothing but a beginning of death. Each moment you will be dying more and more.
It is not that on a certain day, at seventy years old, death comes; it is not an event, it is a process that begins with the birth. It takes seventy years. It is mighty lazy, but it is a process, not an event. And I am emphasizing this fact so that I can make it clear to you that life and death are not two things. They become two if death is an event which ends life. Then they become two; then they become antagonistic, enemies.
When I say that death is a process beginning with birth, I am saying that life is also a process beginning with the same birth - and these are not two processes. It is one process: it begins with birth, it ends with death. But life and death are like two wings of a bird, or two hands, or two legs.
Even your brain has two hemispheres, separate, the right hemisphere and the left hemisphere. You cannot exist without this dialectics. Life is a dialectics - and if you understand this, a tremendous acceptance of death naturally comes to you.
It is not against you, it is part of you; without it you cannot be alive. It is just like the background of a blackboard on which you write with white chalk: the blackboard is not against the white chalk, it simply gives it emphasis, prominence. Without the blackboard your white writing will disappear. It is like day and night - you see it everywhere, but you go on behaving like blind people. Without the night there is no day.
The deeper you enter into the dialectics.it is a miraculous experience. Without inaction there is no action; if you cannot relax, you cannot act. The more you can relax, the more perfection will be in your action. They appear to be opposites; they are not. The better you dissolve into sleep in the night, the sharper, the younger you will wake up in the morning. And everywhere in life you will find the same dialectical process.