Chapter 9: Save the Cat
This disciple didn’t miss a single moment. He heard the story, took off his shoes, put them on his head and walked out. If he had waited a single moment to think, Nansen would have beaten him. I tell you, he would have been beaten. Because the cat was not there any more Nansen might have chopped this disciple - but he acted.
Action without mind is the most beautiful thing possible. But you are afraid because you think if you act without mind you may do something wrong. Because this fear exists the mind exploits it - think first, then act. But you go on missing the train. Leave this fear, otherwise you will never be meditative. Act! In the beginning there will be a deep shaking and trembling, because you have always been acting out of thinking.
It is just like a man who has been living in a prison, in a dark cell, for many years. His eyes have become attuned to darkness. If he is brought out of the cell he will not immediately be able to open his eyes. The sun will be too much, the light will be too much. His whole being will tremble and he will say, “Let me go back to my cell.”
This is what has happened to you, to everybody. We have lived in the mind for many many lives, and we have become attuned to its darkness, its ugliness, futility. When you act without the mind, your whole being trembles. You are moving on a dangerous path. The mind says, “Be alert! Think first, then act.” But if you think first and then do something, your doing will always be dead, stale. It will be out of thought, it will not be real and authentic. Then you cannot love, then you cannot meditate, then you cannot really live and you cannot die. You become a phantom, a phony existence. Love knocks at your heart and you say, “Wait! I will think about it.” Life goes on knocking at your gates and you say, “Wait! I will think about it.”
This disciple must have been deep in meditation. He acted, he simply acted. He could have saved the cat. This means he has already saved it - he has already saved all that is alive. Don’t think about the story, otherwise I will have to chop the cat. You can save it; otherwise the cat will have to be chopped again, and you will be responsible. Act!
But the story won’t help you. Don’t try to put your shoes on your head, that won’t help. It helped that disciple but it won’t help you. The cat will have to be chopped if you put the shoes on your head and walk out, because that will be false again, that will be from the mind. You know the story. Mind cannot give you the real. Whatsoever you do, don’t imitate.
I have heard that in a Chinese town there was one big restaurant, very rich, the most beautiful, rich restaurant in the town. And just near that restaurant lived a poor Chinese. He couldn’t go in the restaurant, it was too costly. But the smell of the food, the aroma.he used to sniff it. And when he took his lunch or dinner he took a chair out of his house and went as near to the restaurant as he dared, and he would sit there and sniff the aroma, the smell that was coming from the restaurant, and eat his food. He enjoyed it. He ran a small laundry.