Chapter 2: Choice Is Hell
You cannot do anything to change it. You can simply see the point that nothing is needed on your part. And once you drop it - or rather it will be better to say: once in your deep understanding it drops - you are open to life. Then life starts flowing through you, like a cool breeze in an open room. You are like a room, windowless: all doors, windows closed, no ray of light enters in you, no new breeze passes through you. You are caved in within yourself, closed. And of course if you start feeling suffocated it is natural.
But I know it is difficult to allow yourself to drown. It takes time. Just a few glimpses will be needed. Sometimes float, don’t swim, and just feel the river taking you over. Sometimes just sit in the garden, don’t choose. Don’t say what is beautiful, what is ugly; don’t divide. Just be there, present to everything. Sometimes move in the marketplace, not saying, not condemning, not appreciating. In many ways learn how just to be, without any evaluation. Because the moment you evaluate you have chosen. The moment you say this is good, you are saying, “I would like to have it.” The moment you say this is bad, you say, “I don’t want it; I would not like to have it.” The moment you say this woman is beautiful, you have desired. The moment you say this woman is ugly, you have already felt repulsion. You are already caught in the duality of good and bad, ugly and beautiful; and the choice has entered in you.
Subtle are the ways of the ego. One has to be very alert.
And once you know - once even for a single moment the ego is not there, you are not creating it - suddenly all doors open, and from everywhere, from all directions, life rushes towards you. That rush is very fragile. If you are not alert you will not be able to see it, you will not be able to feel it. Existence’s touch is very delicate. Great sensitivity is needed to feel it.
Just the other day I was reading a small poem of Huub Oosterhuis.
God does not send us his word
like a great torrent of water
raging in tempest and flood
sweeping us blindly along
but like a glimpse of the sun
or a green branch in the winter,
rain falling softly on earth:
this is how God comes to us.
“.rain falling softly on earth: this is how God comes to us.”
In deep surrender, sensitivity, awareness, suddenly you are full of something which you had never known before. It has always been there, but you were too gross to know it. It has always been there, but you were too much occupied in fighting, in the ways of the ego, that you couldn’t look back and feel it. It was always there, but you were not present. It was always waiting for you, but you had forgotten how to come back home. Dropping the ego is the way back home.
So drown yourself. That’s the whole art I am teaching you here. If I am teaching anything, I am teaching you death, because I know only through death is resurrection.
The second question: