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Chapter 27: Soundlessness, Soundfulness and Total Awareness

A mother is sleeping with her child. She may not hear anything else, but if the child gives even a very small sound, a small signal, she will be awake. If a child feels a little uneasy, she will be awake. The reasoning mind is alert. You are asleep, but your reasoning mind is alert. So even sometimes in dreams, you can feel that they are dreams. Of course, the moment you feel this your dream will be broken. You can feel that it is absurd, but the moment you feel it the dream will be broken. Your mind is alert, a part is constantly watching.

But in hypnosis, or in yoga tandra, the watcher is asleep. That is the problem with all those who want to use sound to go into soundlessness or soundfulness, to go beyond. They must be aware that the mantra should not become an auto-hypnotic technique. It must not create auto-hypnosis.

So what can you do? You can do only one thing: while you are using your mantra, while you are intoning your mantra, do not simply intone it. At the same time be alert and listen to it also. Intone it and listen to it both. Otherwise, if you are not listening consciously, it will become your lullaby and you will fall into deep sleep. That sleep will be very good - you will feel refreshed after it, alive; you will feel a certain well-being - but this is not the point.

The fourth technique on sound:

In the beginning and gradual refinement of the sound of any letter, awake.

Sometimes teachers have used this technique very much. They have their ingenious ways. For example, if you enter a Zen master’s hut, he may suddenly give a scream. You will become startled, but if you know why he is doing this you know he is doing it just to make you awake. Any sudden thing makes you awake. Any sudden sound can make you awake.

Suddenness breaks your sleep, and ordinarily we are asleep. Unless something goes wrong, we are not out of sleep, we go on doing things sleepily. That is why we never feel the sleep. You go to your office, you drive the car, you come back to your home, you love your children, you talk to your wife, so you think you are not sleepy at all. How can you do all of these things in a sleep? You think that isn’t possible, but do you know anything about sleepwalkers - about those who walk in their sleep? Their eyes are open, and they are asleep, and they can do many things. But they will not remember in the morning that they have done them.

They may go to the police station and report that something is wrong, that someone came into their house at night and was creating mischief, and they themselves have been found to be responsible. But in the night, in their sleep, they walk and do certain things, then they come back into their beds and continue their sleep, and in the morning they cannot remember what has happened. They can open doors, they can use keys, they can do many things. Their eyes are open, and they are asleep.