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Chapter 15: The Death of the Old, the Birth of the New

If you start looking at the new then you will feel at home. That too is happening. In a very, very vague way you are becoming aware of that too. Slowly, slowly the new will become settled; the old will become just a memory, a fading memory, a dream that you had dreamt while you were asleep, something that had not happened to you - maybe you had seen it in a movie or read it in a novel; it was somebody else’s story. And slowly, slowly it will go so far away from you that it will become difficult even to recollect it. Then the discontinuity has happened totally. Your umbilical cord is cut; you are really out of the womb of the past. You have started breathing on your own, in a new way, as a nobody.

It feels strange to be impersonal, but to be impersonal is the only way to be universal. Not to be is the only way of being. Shakespeare’s dilemma, “To be or not to be.” cannot be resolved by philosophy, it can be resolved only by meditation, because in meditation not to be prepares the way for you to be. There is no question of choosing - you need not choose between the two, there is no question of either/or - not to be is the way for you to be. If you choose not to be you have chosen the other too: if you choose to be you will have to pass through the process of nonbeing.

Meditation is a process of death, of nonbeing, of becoming nothing on your own accord, of disappearing into the whole, into the harmony of the whole. But it is a miracle, the greatest paradoxical experience of life. There is no contradiction in it, but there is a paradox. Seen from the intellectual standpoint, there is a paradox.

You ask: “How does it happen that I feel so at home and so lost in this buddhafield?” That’s how it happens, that’s the way it happens. That’s the way of the ultimate law - aes dhammo sanantano. If you had asked Buddha he would have said: “Suchness, tathata.” This is how the universal law functions. You disappear and you appear for the first time. But you appear in such a new way - not as a person, not as a name, not as a form, not as a separate identity but just as a total oneness with the whole, in unison with the whole.

That’s what is happening here. Slowly, slowly the energies of the sannyasins are melting and merging and becoming one. Thousands of my sannyasins are functioning in a kind of deep orchestra; they are no longer solo players. They have drowned themselves in this buddhafield.

It needs guts, it needs courage, it needs intelligence, it needs awareness to move from the known into the unknown, to go into the uncharted sea.

You have left this shore. Your small boat is moving toward the unknown. Never look back. The old shore will call you back, it will try to seduce you, it will give you many promises, but remember, it has never fulfilled any promise. And you have lived on this shore for so long; don’t forget the misery, the pain, the anguish, the nightmare that it has been for you for years together. Now go on moving. Don’t look back, look ahead. And always look for the new, the fragile, that which is just arriving on the scene. You will need alertness to recognize it.

The second question:

I have been a sannyasin for only three days and yet I have started to dislike the non-sannyasins. What is happening?

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