Chapter 10: The Song of All Songs
The only way to make a connection is to find a living master to whom you can surrender - a living master who is still in the body, whose emptiness is still shrouded and enshrined in a body and a mind, whose inner space exists still within flesh. Through him you will have a taste of emptiness and through that taste you will know all the people who have ever existed on the earth - because the taste of emptiness is the same.
Just think of it in this way. When you go into a palace the walls are of marble, but when you go into a poor man’s cottage, a hut, the walls are different. They may consist only of bricks, or maybe just of leaves and bamboos. But the inner space of the palace and the hut are the same. The walls differ - the palace has marble walls, very costly, and the poor man’s hut has bamboo walls - but the emptiness that is surrounded by the palace walls and the hut walls is the same.
The space is the same. Krishna speaks one language, Buddha another, Jesus another still, but the meditation, the inner experience, is the same.
If you have chosen me - let me say it to you - if you have chosen me you have chosen all. Through me you will be able to understand all those who have lived before and all who are going to live after. I can promise about the future even, because the taste of emptiness is never going to be different. Many more enlightened people will walk on the earth - tomorrow, the day after tomorrow, centuries after centuries. We don’t know their names but that doesn’t matter because whenever there is an enlightened man on the earth the taste will be the same. You try to taste me. The taste is so clear - it is the taste of hot chilies - you cannot miss it!
“Jesus, Buddha and T.D. Suzuki have been my masters for five years now.” Good, they prepared you to come to me, otherwise you would not have been here. Feel grateful, feel thankful. And always remain thankful to them because without them you would not have been here. They have prepared the path. Sometimes it happens that if you had come to me five years before, you may not have understood a word. Suzuki must have prepared you, Krishnamurti must have helped you. They have given you a direction, now you can understand me better.
Let me tell you one very beautiful story.
Master Tennen Tanka, a great Zen master, once visited a temple and stayed there for the night. The abbot of the temple was very happy because Tennen Tanka was a very famous master and it was a great blessing to the temple that he had come. But during the night Tennen did something which was unbelievable to the abbot. It was a cold night and Tennen burned a wooden Buddha to create a fire. The abbot of the temple was shocked. When he saw the fire in the temple he rushed in and found that one great Buddha statue was missing and the head was there just half burnt. He cried, “What have you done? Are you mad? You have burned my Buddha!”
Tennen laughed and poked the ashes with his staff. The abbot asked, “What are you doing now, you mad man?” Tennen said, “I’m trying to find the relics of the Buddha” - the bones, what the Hindus call flowers.