Chapter 1: The Search for the Bull and Discovering the Footprints
These ten bulls are a pictorial representation of the inquiry, the inquiry that I call man. Kakuan painted the pictures but he was not satisfied. They are tremendously beautiful pictures, but he was not satisfied. Truth is such that whatsoever you do you remain discontented. It cannot be expressed. Then he wrote poems - to substitute. First he painted these ten pictures; feeling dissatisfied, he wrote ten small poems to supplement them. Whatsoever was missing in the pictures he tried in the poems. Again he felt dissatisfied. Then he wrote ten commentaries in prose. I know then too he must have felt unsatisfied, but then there was nothing else to do. Truth is vast, expression limited, but he had tried his best. Nobody had done that before or after.
Painting is the language of the unconscious. It is the language of visualization. It is the language of children. Children think in pictures, hence in children’s books we have to make many, many pictures, colored pictures. The text is very small, pictures are very big - because that is the only way to persuade children to learn to read, because they can learn only through the pictures. The primitive mind thinks in pictures.
That’s why it is thought that languages like Chinese must be the most ancient, because they are pictorial. The language has no alphabet; Chinese, Japanese, Korean don’t have any alphabet - they have thousands of pictures. That’s why it is very difficult to learn Chinese; an alphabet makes things very simple. For each thing, a picture! How many things are there in the world?
And pictures can never be very accurate. They only give you a hint. For example, if in Chinese you have to write “war,” “fight,” “conflict,” then Chinese has a pictogram: a small roof, and under the roof two women are sitting - that is “fight.” One roof and two women! That means, one husband and two women - fight. But this is just indicative, a hint.
Children think in pictures, in dreams. Whatsoever they have to think, first they have to visualize it. All primitives do that. That is the language of the unconscious. You still do it; howsoever articulate you are with language, and howsoever proficient you have become in rational argumentation, still in the night you dream in pictures. The more primitive you are, the more colorful your pictures will be; the more civilized you have become, your pictures become less and less colorful. They become, by and by, black and white.
Black and white is the language of civilization. The rainbow is the language of the primitive. Black and white is not a true language, but we tend.all people who have been trained in Aristotelian logic tend to think in black and white, good and bad, night and day, summer and winter, God and devil - black and white! And there are no other mid-stages. Who is in between God and the devil? - nobody. This is not possible. Watch a rainbow: seven colors. Black on one side, white on the other side, and between these two a great range of colors, step by step.
The whole of life is colorful. Think in colors, don’t think in black and white. That is one of the greatest diseases that has happened to humanity. The name of the disease is “Aristotle-itis” - it comes from Aristotle. You say: This man is good. What do you mean? And then you say: That man is bad. What do you mean? You say: This man is a saint, and that man is a sinner. What do you mean? Have you ever seen a sinner in whom the saint has completely disappeared? Have you ever seen a saint in whom the sinner has completely disappeared? The difference may be of degrees; it is not that of black and white.