Chapter 4: Let It Be So
But that comes not by analysis, not by dissection; it comes by absorbing the experience. Eat it! That which is inexpressible has to be eaten by you. Jesus says to his disciples, “Eat me.” That’s what he means: eat the inexpressible, eat the unknown. Digest it, let it circulate into your blood. Let it become part of you. And then you will know. And the knowing will arise as suddenly as the experience has arisen. Now a ray has entered in you. Allow it to become part of you - only then will you understand it.
This understanding is not the understanding you have been acquainted with up to now. You have known only the mind and its ways. It labels things very immediately. Whenever you ask what is this, what are you asking really? You see a bush and a flower and you say, “What is this?” Somebody says “a rosebush,” and you think you have understood. Somebody has just uttered a word rose and you think you have understood.
But if you don’t know the name you feel a little disturbed. That unknown flower confronts you, challenges you. You feel your prestige is at stake. Because that unknown flower continuously says, “You don’t know me, so what kind of knowledge is yours? You don’t know even me?” That flower goes on hitting hard at you and you start feeling disturbed. You want to know so that you can finish with this challenge. You go to the library, you look at the books, at the Encyclopedia Britannica; you find out what the name of this rose is. It is ‘rose’ - okay, you have labeled it. Now you can be at ease.
But what have you done? Just by putting a word to the rosebush do you think you have understood it? You have lost an opportunity of understanding. You have lost a great challenge. Because remember well - the name ‘rose’ is given by man to the rosebush, the rosebush does not know the name at all. If you talk about the rosebush to the rosebush, the rosebush will not understand it. What are you talking about? What nonsense are you talking about? The rosebush has no name as far as the bush itself is concerned - the name is given by others, given by people like you who cannot tolerate the unknowable anywhere.
The unknowable is such an uneasy thing, it creates so much discomfort. You see somebody; you say, “Who is this man?” And then somebody says he is a Chinese, or an African, or a Japanese, and you feel at ease. What have you known? Just by saying that he is a Chinese.. There are millions of Chinese - eight hundred million - and no other Chinese is like him. In fact, nothing exists like the Chinese. There are millions and millions of Chinese - each individual is unique, different; each has his own signature, his own being. What have you understood by labeling a man as a Chinese? But you feel at ease.
What religion does he belong to? He is a Buddhist. Another label has come into your hand. You know a little more now. To what party does he belong? He is a communist. Still a few more labels you gather - and then you think you have known the man.