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Chapter 6: Just Shadows Lingering

This has happened always: revolutions fail because they are reactions. Never be a revolutionary: be a rebel. A rebel is not against the past; the past is not even worth that. To be against it means to be focused on it; to be against it means you are paying too much attention to it. To be against it means you are hypnotized by it.

A few are for it - they are hypnotized. And a few are against it - they are hypnotized. The rebel is one who simply sees the whole futility of it, and without fighting drops it. If you fight, it will cling to you; if you fight, you have to cling to it. It will become your definition. Don’t let the past define you; simply slip out of it, just like a snake slips out of the old skin - and never even looks back. That is the way of the rebel.

I teach the way of the rebel. That is the way of religion - religion is rebellion, not revolution. And it gives immense respect to the individual. Each one can be a rebel in his own way: just simply slip out of the past. There is no need to struggle with it - it is no more there. And if you go on fighting.you don’t have that long a life. The past has been very long - millions of years - how are you going to fight with it in a life that consists at the most of seventy or eighty years? In this small life span, how are you going to fight with the past which is so huge, immense?

The only wise way is to slip out of it; there is no need to fight with it. And this has to be understood on many levels.

Politically, people fight with the past - the Hindu past, the Christian past, the Mohammedan past - and they become like the past they are fighting with. Psychologically, since Sigmund Freud, people are fighting with their own individual pasts - the childhood traumas. That too is big, and if you have to sort it out and fight with everything and put everything right, your whole present and future will be wasted in it. The past is already wasted, the present will be wasted in psychoanalysis, and the whole future you will be fighting, and fighting with the past. And to fight with the past is to fight with a shadow - you can never win. How can you win against a shadow? It does not exist in the first place. You have only to see that it is a shadow, and that is that.

That is the basic difference between the psychological approach towards life and the religious approach. Religion simply says: “Be more meditative, be more aware. Be right now here.” In that very awareness, in that crystal-clear consciousness, you see that the past is an unnecessary burden - you need not carry it. Nobody can force you to carry it; you are carrying it on your own, it is your decision.

Your parents are not there to enforce it - it is already gone. Just shadows are lingering. See that they are shadows, and you are free. In that very seeing is freedom. In that very understanding is liberation. And then all your energies are available to be herenow. Then you can bloom; then you can blossom. Then, your life can have some fulfillment, some joy, some celebration.

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