Chapter 31: The Festive Dimension
I am bringing a new vision of religion to the world. This is the boldest attempt ever made: to accept life in its multidimensions, to enjoy it, to celebrate it, to rejoice in it. Renunciation is not my way, but rejoicing. Fasting is not my way, but feasting. And to be festive is to be religious. My definition of religion is the festive dimension.
No other animal can be festive, no other animal knows anything about festivals. Porpoises can play, chimpanzees can play, only man celebrates. Celebration is the highest growth of consciousness, expression, manifestation, flowering of the Golden Flower.
I teach you celebration. Celebration is my key.
And I teach you: celebrate your sex, it is a God-given gift; celebrate your body, it is God’s grace. Celebrate each moment that has been given to you, each breath, each heartbeat. It is such a benediction. Live God right now! I don’t give you God as a goal, I make God available to you right now, this very moment. Celebrate, and you are in God.
The old religions were sad. The old religions were serious. My religion is that of playfulness: everything has to be taken into the mood of playfulness. Don’t take life seriously. It is fun. And to take it as fun is to be prayerful. Then there is no complaint, then there is only gratefulness.
The question is important. A few things would be helpful.
There are people who are pathological, and the pathological mind has dominated in the past. Those people cannot enjoy, they don’t know how to enjoy. Because they are incapable of enjoying, they make a great virtue out of it. Non-enjoyment becomes virtue.
Everybody is born with the capacity to enjoy, but not with the art. People think just because they are alive and they breathe and they exist, so they know how to enjoy. That is sheer stupidity. Enjoyment is a great art, it is a great discipline. It is as subtle a discipline as music or poetry or painting. It is the greatest creativity.
People are born and they start thinking that they are ready to enjoy life, and they cannot enjoy because they don’t know how to enjoy it. They make a mess out of their lives, and sooner or later, when-you are making a mess, there are only two possibilities. One is: think that you are being stupid with life - that hurts the ego. The other is: that life is worthless, that life is misery - “There is no joy in life, that’s why I am not enjoying it. Nothing is wrong with me. If there is something wrong, it is in the very structure of life itself.” This has been the approach in the past: “If I cannot see light, then there is no light” - not that I am blind. “If I cannot hear sound, then there is no sound” - not that I am deaf.