Chapter 1: The Tradition of the Upanishads and the Secrets of Meditation
The traditional term for the third listening is “faith.” So we can divide through reason, the method is doubt; through feeling the method is love, sympathy; through being the method is faith, trust - because if we are going into the unknown, how can you doubt? You can doubt the known, but that which is not known at all - how can you doubt it?
Doubt becomes valid if it is concerned with the known. With the unknown, doubt is just impossible. How can you love the unknown? You can love the known; you cannot love the unknown, you cannot create a relationship with the unknown. Relationship is impossible; you cannot relate with it. You can dissolve into it - that is another thing - but you cannot relate with it. You can surrender to it, but you cannot relate to it. Surrender is not a relationship. It is not a relationship at all. It is just dissolving the duality.
So with reason the duality remains: you are in conflict with the other. With love the duality remains: you are in sympathy with the other. But with being the duality dissolves: you are neither in conflict nor in love, you are not related at all. This third is known traditionally as faith, trust - shraddha. As far as the unknown is concerned, faith is the key.
If someone says, “How can I believe,” then he misunderstands, then he misses the very point. Faith is not belief. Belief is, again, a rational thing. You can believe, you can disbelieve. You can believe because you have arguments for believing, you can disbelieve because you have arguments for disbelieving. Belief is never deeper than reason. So theists, atheists, believers, nonbelievers, they all belong to the most shallow realm. Faith is not belief because for the unknown there is no reason for or against. You can neither believe nor disbelieve.
So what remains to be done? You can either be open to it or you can be closed to it. It is not a question of believing or not believing, it is a question of being open or being closed to it. If you trust, then you open. If you distrust, then you remain closed. This is just a key. If you want to open to the unknown then you will have to be in trust, in faith. If you do not want to be open to it you can remain closed - but no one is missing except you, no one is at a loss except you. You will remain closed like a seed. When I say it, I mean it.
A seed has to break, has to die, only then is the tree born. But the seed has never known the tree. The dying of the seed can happen only in faith. The tree is unknown, and the seed will never meet the tree. The seed can remain closed in fear, in fear of death - then the seed will remain a seed and ultimately will die without being reborn. But if the seed can die in faith that the unknown may be born out of its death, only then does it open. In a way it dies, in a way it is reborn - reborn into greater mysteries, reborn into a richer life. The same is the phenomenon with faith. So it is not belief: never misunderstand it as belief. It is not feeling. It is deeper than both. It is your totality.