Chapter 3: An Opening to the Unknown
So the outer can be without the inner, we can impose it. There is no reason, there is no basis, no necessity, no inevitability, that the inner should follow the outer. The outer always follows the inner, but never the vice versa. Ritual is born because of this fallacy.
We see a buddha sitting in a silent posture - in siddhasan, the most relaxed posture for the body. This posture is a consequence of an inner quietude because the consciousness has become so still that the body follows it, and the body spontaneously takes the most relaxed posture. But for us the body is the first thing to be noticed. We see the body first, so we say that Buddha achieved liberation in this posture. Really, quite the reverse is the case: because Buddha achieved liberation, this posture followed. This posture is not a cause. So you can practice the posture, you can become efficient in the posture - but don’t wait for the liberation to come. The posture will be there, but liberation will not come.
Someone is praying. His hands are raised or his head is surrendered unto some unknown feet. This is an outward posture. When surrendering really happens inside, this posture follows. When surrendering happens inside, when one begins to feel a nothingness, when one begins to feel to just dissolve into the infinite, this posture follows. You can imitate the posture, but surrendering will not follow.
When I say this posture follows, I don’t mean that it is bound to follow for everyone. With every individual there will be differences. It will depend on the culture, on the upbringing, on the climate, on many things. There is no intrinsic necessity for the posture to follow. What will follow will depend on many many things. For example, if a buddha is not born in India but in a culture, in a society, where no one sits on the ground, do you think enlightenment will not come to him? It will come on a chair! Of course, when he is sitting in a chair he will sit in a different way. When enlightenment comes to him he will totally relax, but that relaxation will be different, outwardly, from a siddhasan.
Mahavira achieved liberation in a very strange posture. It is known as goduhasan, the posture of a cowherd milking a cow - the same posture as a cowherd milking a cow. In that posture Mahavira was enlightened. Never before and never afterwards has anyone achieved liberation in that posture. He was not milking a cow! Why did this happen? It must have something to do with Mahavira’s own bodily habits; it might be concerned with his past incarnations. Nothing is known about why this happened.
The basic thing is that outward things follow some in-ward happenings. They, too, are not fixed laws. From individual to individual they differ. It depends; it depends on many things. But the society begins to feel a necessary connection, a cause-effect connection, between outward things and inward. Then the ritual is born. “Ritual” means that we will do something outward, and the inner will follow. This is the most fallacious thing possible. This fallacy destroys every religion, and every religion ultimately becomes just a ritualistic nonsense.