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Chapter 9: The Voice of Silence

Buddha sows, Mahavira sows, Krishna sows, Christ sows, Mohammed sows - he who attains bliss, sows it. First he reaps it and then he sows it - because you can only sow after you have reaped. You must have something to sow! How will you sow what you do not have? Only that which you have can be sown, so if you do not have bliss what will you sow?

All of us are making this mistake - that is why the world is in such a mess: we are all trying to give each other bliss, without bothering whether we have any of it ourselves in the first place. The result is that we all want to give happiness, we all want to give bliss, but we only succeed in making each other more miserable. No one is able to give happiness to anyone else.

The husband is trying very hard to make his wife happy but she is just becoming more miserable. The wife is trying very hard to make her husband happy, but he is thinking, “What sort of trouble have I landed myself into? How can I escape?” The father is trying to please his son and the son is thinking about when he will get a chance to escape from the clutches of the father. Sons are trying to please their fathers and fathers are hitting their heads and saying, “What sort of terrible sons were born into my family?”

We are all trying to please each other. It is not that we are not really trying - we are. There is no question about it, there is no doubt that we are trying. But we are trying without ever pausing to consider how we can give something to someone else which we ourselves do not possess. The wife herself is not happy and she is trying to make her husband happy. He himself is unhappy and is trying to make her happy. The father is unhappy and is trying to please his son. This is madness. What sort of arithmetic is this? I cannot give you what I do not have.

And this is also a part of it, that I do not have bliss but I am trying to get it from others. I never realize that those people I am expecting bliss from are expecting the same from me. When you are expecting happiness from someone and he is expecting it from you, then your state is like that of two beggars expecting charity from one another! How can there be any giving? Both are going to be disheartened, because both will be unsuccessful and will accuse the other one of cheating - that he could have given but he didn’t. If he were capable of giving he would have.

Bliss is something which increases if given; hence one who is capable of giving is bound to give. He cannot withhold it, because by withholding, bliss rots; by withholding, bliss decreases; by withholding, bliss is lost. So when something increases by being shared, who won’t share it? Everyone wants to share, but they don’t have anything to share. Everyone wants to receive, but the very person they have gone to receive from is himself asking for something.

So a world full of beggars makes everyone suffer profoundly, the grief is acute. In the beginning everything seems joyous, but after a while everything becomes sorrowful. There is only happiness while there is still the hope that it is attainable. When hope is shattered, when every ray of hope is dimmed and every root is crushed, sorrow becomes visible.

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