Chapter 30: Laughter and Tears - a Cleansing of the Heart
Two old people appeared in the court, husband and wife - the husband was ninety-five years old, the wife ninety years old, and they wanted a divorce. The magistrate could not believe it. He said, “My god, at this age! For what? How long have you been married?”
They said, “Who remembers? Maybe sixty years, seventy years, but we cannot give you a certain date. It was long before.”
The magistrate said, “If you have lived together so long that you cannot even remember when you started living together, then why are you divorcing now? If life was not good, and things were not going well, you should have appeared before the court long ago!”
The old man said, “We wanted to come, but the children.Now all the children are dead, so we decided there is no point in torturing each other. Now we should get a divorce: you torture somebody else if you can find anybody; I will torture somebody else if I can find. Otherwise we can be alone far better than we are together. Together we become so sad that ‘This woman destroyed my life’ or, ‘This man destroyed my life.’”
People marry not because of love - love knows no marriage, because love will not create any contract. It is not business. Love knows no marriage because it is not business, it is not law. It won’t reduce the freedom of the other. If anything, it will increase and enhance the freedom of the other.
Love cannot cut the wings of the other. It will give you more wings, more skies, vast spaces to fly and to be.
But that does not happen. Marriage is a utility. It is a need, it is not a celebration.
Everything in life has become so mundane, so burdensome, but you don’t know what else to do, where to go. Everybody is suffering his own suffering. You cannot change places. Even if it were possible to change places you would not change, because our own misery is at least ours and we are well acquainted.
At a party one man was asked by his wife, “I hear that the woman sitting over there is your mistress?”
The man did not want to create a fuss in the party, so he whispered; he said, “Yes, everybody has mistresses here, so don’t make any trouble.”
She said, “Then tell me who is whose mistress?”
So he told her: “This man has that mistress, and his wife is somebody else’s mistress. Things are so puzzled.”
He told her about everybody. The same women, the same men, but all have mistresses, all have wives.
The woman looked at all of them and finally said, “But ours is the best.”
Her husband’s mistress! It was an agony, but ours.! “Others are being more idiotic - these horrible women.I know all of them.”
Even the agony, the pain becomes by and by an acquaintance, old and familiar. You cannot part with it, you will miss it.