Chapter 7: The Proper State of Mind
But how to come to an interval where the mind stops the inner chattering? If you try, again you will miss. But there is no need to try. In fact, the interval is continuously happening. Just a little alertness is needed. Between two thoughts there is an interval; even between two words there is a gap. Otherwise words will run over each other, otherwise thoughts will overlap each other.
They don’t overlap, whatsoever you say. You say, “A rose is a rose is a rose:” between two words there is a gap; between a and rose there is a gap, howsoever small, howsoever invisible, howsoever imperceptible. But the gap is there, otherwise a will run over ros’. With just a little alertness, just a little watchfulness and you can see the gap: a.rose.is.a.rose.is.a.rose. The gap is continuously recurring; after each word the gap is recurring.
The gestalt has to be changed. Ordinarily you look at the words, you don’t look at the gaps. You look at the a, you look at the rose, but you don’t look at the gap between the two. Change your attention.
Have you seen children’s books? There are many pictures, and you can look at the same picture in two ways: if you look one way there is an old woman, but if you go on looking, suddenly the picture changes and a young, beautiful woman can be seen. The same lines make both faces - of an old woman and a young woman. If you go on looking at the young face, again it changes because the mind cannot remain constant at anything; it is a flux. And if you go on looking again at the old face it will change back to a young face.
You will notice one thing: when you see the old face you cannot see the young face, though you know it is hidden somewhere, you have known it, you have seen it. And when you see the young face, the old face cannot be seen. It disappears although you know it is there. But you cannot see both together; they are contradictory. They cannot be seen together: when you see the figure the background disappears, when you see the background the figure disappears.
Mind has a limited capacity to know; it cannot know the contradictory. That’s why it cannot know godliness: godliness is contradictory. That’s why it cannot know the innermost core of your being: it is contradictory. It comprehends all contradictions, it is paradoxical.
The mind can see only one thing at a time, and the opposite is not possible at the same time. When you see the opposite, the first disappears. The mind goes on looking at the words so it cannot see the silences that come after each word.
Change the focus. Just sitting silently, start looking in the gaps - not with effort, no need to strain; relaxed, just easy, in a playful mood, just as a fun. No need to be religious about it, otherwise you become serious. And once you become serious it is very difficult to move from words to no words. It is very easy if you remain loose, flowing, non-serious, playful - as if it is just a fun.