Chapter 10: The Open Secret
Love is certainly a secret, but not an ordinary secret - an extraordinary secret. And its extraordinariness consists in its being an open secret. Everybody knows it and yet nobody knows it; hence I call it the open secret. Everybody knows it in his deepest heart, but nobody knows it in his head. It is a totally different kind of knowing. It is not knowledge. You cannot learn about it, you can only live it. Living is knowing. It is not something that scriptures can give to you; nobody can give it to you. Only you are capable of conferring this gift upon yourself; it is your responsibility. You can know it, but knowing is intuitive.
This word intuition is beautiful. You know the other word, tuition; tuition means somebody else is giving it to you. Intuition means nobody is giving it to you; it is growing within yourself. And because it is not given to you by somebody else, it cannot be put into words.
Language is needed when we are talking to each other. Language is not needed when something is growing in your consciousness, because there is no dialogue. It grows in silence, it blooms in silence; hence when you try to put it into words it escapes. Its very climate is silence. It can’t be brought into language; it can’t be reduced to theories, concepts, ideologies. That’s why it is an open secret: knowing is possible, knowledge is impossible.
Saint Augustine is reported to have said once - somebody asked him: “What is love?”
He said, “Love is like time.”
The questioner was puzzled. He said, “Okay, then - what is time?”
Augustine said, “You misunderstood me. I meant it is like time because everybody knows what time is, but if somebody asks you what it is, you can’t answer.”
Can you answer what time is? And you know - it is not that you don’t know - but knowing seems to be so deep that it cannot be brought to the surface. Or if you try to bring it to the surface it becomes so distorted that it is no longer the same. In the depth it is a diamond; the moment you bring it to the surface it turns out to be an ordinary pebble. And because you know it is a diamond, you cannot use the pebble to represent it.
Love is one of the most mysterious phenomena in existence, next to God. That’s why love is closer to godliness than anything else. If you can understand love, if you can be love - because that is the only way to understand it - you will become aware of the presence of God, immediately, instantly! The moment of love is the moment of the experience of God. Suddenly he is everywhere.