Chapter 3: Tariqa - The Method
Ordinarily a man is exactly like what his behavior is. What you do, that you are. But when a Buddha is there then the difference is tremendous, the distance is vast. What he is doing is very, very ordinary and what he is, is tremendously extraordinary. The distance is so vast that you cannot fathom his being through his behavior.
But the modern mind suffers very much from this disease. You can go and see B.F. Skinner and other psychologists - Pavlov and others - just watching the behavior of rats to decide what the human mind is. Watching the behavior of a rat to decide about man.!
A rat is just his behavior. He has not yet grown an individuality, he has not yet grown a self. But one thing has to be said in favor of Skinner and others of his kind: about the mass they are right, about the crowd they are right. The crowd has the same state as the rat. But they miss the exceptional, and the exceptional is the essence of humanity.
They can explain your behavior through the study of rats, but they cannot explain a Buddha or a Mohammed. But they try - and there they go berserk.
The sharia is created by watching the behavior of the enlightened person. It is okay when the enlightened person is in his body, but when he has disappeared from it then what will you do? You will start worshipping the body, the clothes.. And sometimes it happens that when a great man dies - like a Mohammed or a Buddha - for a few days something hovers around him, as if he is still alive. That also creates trouble.
You must have heard the famous Greek story.. The story is told that the runner of a marathon was dead an hour before he reached Athens. He was dead, yet he still ran. And as a dead man he announced the victory of the Greeks.
It is a beautiful myth. It shows that the dead masters act for a while as if they were still alive. But only a little while - one year, ten years, fifty years perhaps. In any case, a finite period. Yes, this happens.
When a Mohammed disappears from the body, the body has tasted so much joy, the body has known so much celebration that it goes on dancing - the runner goes on running. That myth is really beautiful and meaningful.
At least about the great masters it is true. For a few years things go on happening as if they are still alive. This happens because of the tremendous energy released by the dying master. His very place becomes a sacred place for pilgrimage. That’s how a Mecca is created; that’s how Kailash becomes of great significance; that’s how Jainas have Girnar and Shikharji. On the mountains of Shikharji, twenty-three Jaina tirthankaras have died - out of twenty-four. Out of twenty-four great masters, twenty-three masters have died on a small hill. The whole hill has become suffused with the vibe of the beyond.
But that continues only for a while. That also creates a problem; then the disciples think that the corpse is still alive because things go on happening. When I am gone things will go on happening for a few years, and for those who are deeply in love with me it will be as if I am still alive. Naturally, they will think that everything is as it was before.