Chapter 7: I Have Been Fooled!
The second type of listener hears what is being said. The second type of listener will take a little time, because even after hearing what has been said, courage to translate it into action it is still lacking. But if he has heard, courage will come because it is impossible to remain long in the false after hearing the truth. Once truth is seen, then no matter how old a habit is it will have to be dropped. When you find out that two plus two equals four, then no matter how old your conditioning is that two plus two equals five, it will have to drop. Once you know where the door is, it is impossible to try getting out through the wall. Now it will not be possible to go on beating your head on the wall. When the truth is understood, sooner or later enough courage will come so that one takes the jump and transforms oneself.
Then there is the first type of listener. If you have both understanding and courage you will become the first type of listener. The first type of listener means that understanding and courage happen simultaneously - understanding arises and courage is ready. There is no gap between understanding and courage. It is not that today you understand and that tomorrow you have the courage, that you understand this lifetime and in the next life you find courage. You understand, and the courage is right here. You understand this very moment, and this very moment there is courage. Then a spontaneous happening occurs. Then the sun suddenly rises. Janak is the first type of listener.
One more thing related to this has to be understood. Janak is an emperor. He has everything. He has more than he needs. He has enjoyed the world. The revolution of consciousness happens easily in the life of a man who has experienced the world because that life experience tells him: “What I have known as life is meaningless.” Half the work is done by life; the life he knows is meaningless.
Questions began arising in his mind: Where is more life? Is there another life? Where is true life? But someone who has not enjoyed the world, who has only wanted to enjoy, who has only wanted to get but has not got anything - for him there will be tremendous difficulties. So don’t be surprised if all of India’s great masters, all the great seers - whether Jaina or Buddhist or Hindu - if they were all princes, don’t be shocked. It is not accidental. It is an indication that one becomes free of the world through enjoying it. An emperor can see that there is nothing in wealth because he has a mass of wealth but inside nothingness, emptiness. He has a harem of beautiful women and nothing inside himself. He has beautiful palaces, yet inside all is desolation, a desert. When one has all, it starts to be clear that there is nothing in any of it. When one has nothing one lives in hopes.
It is difficult to get rid of hopes because there is no way that hopes can be checked against reality. The poor man thinks he will live happily if he gets money tomorrow. The rich man already has wealth; there is no way for him to hope. Hence when a society becomes prosperous it becomes religious. Don’t be surprised if the winds of religion have begun to blow strongly in America. This has always happened.. When India was wealthy - as it surely was in the days of Ashtavakra; it was wealthy in the days of Buddha, it was wealthy in the days of Mahavira - when India was at the peak of its prosperity it reached the great heights of yoga. It took the ultimate flight into spirituality because then people saw that there is nothing in wealth; they had everything and still nothing had meaning. If a country is poor then it is very difficult to see this.