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Chapter 1: Non-Being is the Way of Being

On witnessing this, the group of young people cast away their instruments, left their former ways, entered the khanigah, and became Sufis.

What happened to that group of young people? For the first time, they saw ecstasy, wajd, love, madness for God. For the first time, they came across a man who could risk his very life. This is ishq. Ishq means you are ready to lose your life for your love. Ishq means love has become a higher value than life itself.

Hence the people who are in love are thought to be mad by people who have not known love, are thought to be blind by people who have not seen through the eyes of love. The intellectual condemns the ways of love; he is afraid. Love is dangerous. To go through the heart is risky because the heart is non-calculative, illogical.

Just remember this man, this madman Ruzbihan, jumping from the roof of the khanigah just because a few people were singing a song and they said, “If you are ready to lose your soul, get up and come now, for the field is empty” - and he jumped, without hesitating for a single moment. This is madness. The calculative mind is going to condemn it. But he was not hurt. He was so drunk, he was not even aware of what was happening. Nothing was happening to him, because he was not there: as if God jumped through him. He was possessed by God, he was utterly drunk.

Seeing him coming from the roof, turning, whirling in the air.They had seen many dervishes, whirling dervishes, but not a man like this. And when he came onto the ground, he was so innocent, he was so silent, his joy was such, seeing him, just seeing him, was enough for them to renounce their old ways. They threw down their instruments, entered the khanigah, and became Sufis.

That’s how you have become Sufis with me. You have also jumped from your roofs. To become a sannyasin is a quantum leap: it is a non-calculated step. It is only for the mad ones. But God is only for the mad ones. Those who calculate remain part of the marketplace. Calculation keeps you in the world.

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