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Chapter 9: This, Is That

Had Rinzai read this sutra of this Upanishad, he would have danced with joy! He would have said, “Right! That which is there is also here. The world and nirvana are one.” The only difference is because of the blind people: they don’t see it here, yet this does not make them realize that they have no eyes. Instead they think, “It is not here so there is no need to search for it. When we go to the next world..”

This is why as a man starts growing older and the next world feels as if it is coming closer, he starts becoming religious. In the temples, in the mosques, in the gurudwaras, you will find many old people; you won’t see many young people there. And if sometimes you do see a young man there you can be sure that for one reason or other he must have become old. Something has gone wrong with him. Even the old people will look at a young man in amazement: “Why is he here?” They tell their sons, “Religion is not for you yet. There is a right age for it. When you become old, then..”

In fact, when the phenomenon of death starts coming closer, when you begin to realize that soon now you may have to go to the next world, then you start becoming religious - because the ultimate reality is not in this world.

But this situation is deceptive: one who is not already religious here will not become religious just because of death. To one who is unable to see the ultimate reality here, death does not give him the eyes to be able to see the divine in the next world.

As you are, if you are suddenly brought into the middle of any other dimension, you will see the world there too. You will quickly begin to make some arrangements there also: you will start setting up a shop, you will start creating a marriage and a family, one thing or the other. Whatever your world was here, you will start arranging the same there.

But an intelligent person sees only freedom, only liberation already in this world. There is no way for him to see otherwise.

“The divine that is here is also there; the divine that is there is also here. The one who sees the divine in this world as many will wander from death to death.”

Not as one.. This too needs to be clearly understood. We see this world as the many: the trees are separate, the rocks are separate, you are separate, I am separate, the neighbor is separate. Everything is separate, divided, not united. Your situation is the same as when the moon rises in the night and there are thousands of ponds and lakes and reservoirs of water on the Earth and the moon is reflected in all of them. The moon in the sky is one, but all these reflections that are formed are in the millions. If you go on counting each and every reflection separately and think this must be the number of moons and you do not raise your eyes to the one moon that is being reflected in all these others..

All existence in this world, all the forms, they are all reflections of the one divine. Within you, in the lake of your consciousness, is the reflection of that one reality.