Chapter 4: What Is the Way?
A master who lived as a hermit on a mountain was asked by a monk: “What is the way?” “What a fine mountain this is,” the master said in reply. “I am not asking you about the mountain,” said the monk, “but the way.”
The master replied: “So long as you cannot go beyond the mountain, my son, you cannot reach the way.”
The Way is easy - but you are the mountain and beyond lies the Way. Crossing yourself is very difficult. Once you are on the Way there is no problem, but the Way is very far from you.
And you are such a mass of contradictions! One fragment of you goes to the east, another goes to the west - you are not moving in one direction. You cannot as you are, because to move in one direction you need an inner unity, a crystallized being. As you are you are a crowd, with many selves, with no unity.
At the most, if you make some arrangement, as everybody has to make - if you control yourself, at the most you can become an assembly, not a crowd; and then too you will be the Indian assembly, not the British: at the most the majority of your fragments can move in one direction, but the minority will always be there, going somewhere else.
So even a very controlled man, disciplined, a man of character, of thinking, that man too never reaches the Way. He may be able to adjust to the society, but he is also unable to reach the Way from where the door towards the divine opens.
You are really a mountain.
The first thing to be understood is that the crowd must go. The polypsychic existence must become unipsychic; you must be one. That means you must be thoughtless, because thoughts are a crowd; they divide you, and every thought pulls you apart. They create chaos within you and they are always contradictory. Even when you decide, the decision is always against some part within you, it is never total.
I have heard it happened:
Mulla Nasruddin was very ill - tense, psychiatrically ill. And the illness was that he became, by and by, absolutely unable to make any decision - not big decisions at that, but small ones also: whether to take a bath or not, whether to wear this tie or that, whether to take a taxi to the office or drive the car - not big ones, small decisions, but he became unable to make them so he was put in a psychiatric hospital.
Six months of treatment and everything settled, and the doctors felt that now he was okay. They said one day, “Now, Nasruddin, you are absolutely okay. You can go back in the world, take your job, start working and functioning. We are completely satisfied that now there is nothing wrong.” But seeing a slight indecision on Nasruddin’s part the doctor said, “Don’t you feel that now you are ready to go into the world and start working and functioning?”
Nasruddin said, “Yes and no.”