Chapter 4: Returning to the Source
It is interesting that the machines keep recording movement inside the man while he is in the dreaming state, but as soon as he falls into dreamless sleep, the machine shows a gap. They don’t know where the man disappeared in that gap. So dreamless sleep means the man has reached a place beyond the machine’s range. It is in this gap that man enters the divine.
The machine is unable to detect this space in between, this gap. The machine records the internal activity as long as the man is dreaming - then comes the gap and the man disappears somewhere. And then, after ten minutes, the machine starts recording again. It is difficult to say where the man was during that ten-minute interval. American psychologists are very intrigued by this gap; hence they consider sleep the biggest mystery. The fact is that next to godliness, sleep is the only mystery. There is no other mystery.
You sleep every day, yet you have no idea what sleep is. A man sleeps all through his life, and yet nothing changes - he knows nothing about sleep. The reason you don’t know anything about sleep is that when sleep is there, you are not. Remember, you are only as long as sleep is not. And so, you come to know only as much as the machine knows. Just as in the face of the gap the machine stops and is unable to reach where the man has been transported; you cannot reach there either - because you are no more than a machine as well.
Since you do not come across that gap either, sleep remains a mystery; it remains beyond your reach. This is so because a man falls into wakeless sleep only when he ceases to exist in his “I-am-ness.” And therefore, as the ego keeps growing, sleep becomes less and less. An egoistic person loses his capacity to sleep because his ego, the I, keeps asserting itself twenty-four hours a day. It is the I that wakes up, the same I that walks on the street. The I remains so present the entire twenty-four hours that at the moment of falling asleep, when the time approaches to drop the I, one is unable to get rid of it. Obviously, it becomes difficult to fall asleep. As long as the I exists, sleep is impossible. And, as I told you yesterday, as long as the I exists, entering into godliness is impossible.
Entering into sleep and entering into godliness are exactly one and the same thing; the only difference is that through sleep one enters into godliness in an unconscious state, while through meditation one enters into godliness in a conscious state. But this is a very big difference. You may enter godliness through sleep for thousands of lives, yet you will never come to know godliness. But if, even for a moment, you enter meditation you will have reached the same place you have reached in deep sleep for thousands and millions of lives - although always in an unconscious state - and it will transform your life totally.