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Chapter 1: Pursuit of Knowledge

A man of knowledge is a man of planning, and life is an unplanned flow. Life is freedom. You cannot pigeonhole it, you cannot categorize it. That’s why a man of knowledge misses life. He knows much, and he knows nothing. He knows too much and he is just empty and hollow. You cannot find more shallow a person than a man of knowledge. He is just surface and surface, he has no depth, because depth comes through eternity.

Time is horizontal, it moves in a line on the horizon. Eternity is vertical, it moves into depth and height. That is the meaning of Jesus’ cross: time crossing eternity, or eternity crossing time. Jesus’ hands are time, they move into past and future, crucified in time, resurrected into eternity. His being is vertical - everybody’s being is vertical, only the body, the hands, the material part of you, is horizontal.

Knowledge creates future, future creates worry. The more you know, the more worried, the more uneasy. You are never at ease, at home - a deep trembling inside. It is a pathology. A man of knowing is totally different - he lives here. This moment is all, as if tomorrow exists not - and really it exists not, it has never existed, it is part of the game of the mind. It is a dream of the man of knowledge.

This moment is all, and the total. Knowing moves into this moment vertically, goes deeper and deeper and deeper. A man of knowing has depth; even his surface is nothing but part of depth. He has no superficial surface, his surface is also part of depth. And a man of knowledge? He has no depth, his depth is also part of his surface.

And this is the paradox: that a man of knowing knows and a man of knowledge does not know, cannot know, because knowledge cannot meet life. That is the barrier, on the contrary, the only barrier, the hindrance. It is just like this: a mother knows that the child is hers; the father has knowledge that the child is his. The father has only a belief. Deep down he does not know. Only a mother knows!

It happened, Mulla Nasruddin was working as a vizier to a small kingdom. The king was very generous - not very rich, the kingdom was small - but still very generous. Every year Nasruddin would come and tell him that his wife had given birth to a child, and the king would give valuable presents to him, to the child, to the mother - but then it became too much because it was every year.

When the twelfth child was born and Nasruddin came, the king said, “Now Mulla, it is too much, and the world is suffering too much from overpopulation, what are you doing? If you go at this speed you will create a small nation. You go on, every year - stop it! Let this child be the last! And if you cannot stop, if you are unable to stop, then it is better to commit suicide rather than to overburden the earth.”

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