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Chapter 9: Rejoice to Abandon!

And it is very rare, almost impossible, to find a man to fit a ready-made bed. The average person does not exist, remember; the average person is a fiction, and the bed was made for the average person. The king was a mathematician - great calculation had gone into it. He had measured the height of all the citizens of his capital, and then the height was divided by the number of all the citizens; he had come to a fixed average. Now, there were small children in the capital, young people, old people, pygmies, giants, but the average was a totally different phenomenon. There was not a single person in his whole capital who was really average. I have never come across the average person - the average person is a fiction.

So whosoever was going to be the guest was in trouble. If he was shorter than the bed, then the king had great wrestlers who would pull the man to size. That must have been the beginning of Rolfing! Ida Rolf must have learned it from that king. Of course, each guest died, but that was not the king’s fault - he was doing everything with the best intentions in the world!

When you have a certain attitude towards life you will miss life itself. Life is vast, uncontainable by any attitude; it is impossible to put it into a certain definition. Yes, your attitude may cover a certain aspect, but it will be only an aspect. And the tendency of the mind is to proclaim its aspect as the whole, and the moment the aspect is claimed as the whole you have missed the very connection with life. Then you will live surrounded by your attitude in a kind of cocoon, encapsulated, and you will be miserable. And then all your so-called religions will be very happy because that’s what they have been telling to you: that life is misery.

Buddha says birth is misery, youth is misery, old age is misery, death is misery - the whole of life is nothing but a long, long tragedy. If you start with attitudes you will find Buddha absolutely correct; you will be a proof of it.

But I want to tell you that life is not misery, and I don’t agree with Buddha at all. Life becomes a misery, but that is your doing; otherwise life is eternal joy. But to know that eternal joy you have to come open-hearted, open-handed.

Don’t approach life with your fists closed, clenched. Open your hands. Go into life with immense innocence. Attitudes are cunning: you have already decided without tasting, without experiencing, without living. You have already arrived at certain conclusions, and of course if those conclusions are there already in you a priori, you will find them confirmed by life. It is not that life confirms them, but your whole mind will try to find out ways and means, arguments, data to support them.

Mind is like a sponge: it goes on sucking. It is a parasite. Once there is the center of a certain a priori conclusion then that center starts becoming crystallized.

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