Chapter 43: Living in Consciousness
When suffering is acute - not just a tantrum, not just an act that you are putting on, not just a habit but a real suffering, a despair; when you see that life has no meaning, that each breath seems to be simply unnecessary - why do you go on living, for what? Nothing is going to happen, and there is no exit either. When the pain of it becomes so intense that it goes beyond the limit of human toleration, suddenly you may come out of a nightmare. Then, this so-called waking state will prove only a different kind of sleep, with open eyes.
You can be awakened. In existence there is nothing which is not ready to help you; just you have to be available to take the help.
People talk about misery - I have listened to many people about their misery - but the way they talk about their misery, it seems they are feeling very happy. Their misery is something like a piece of art. They exaggerate it. They go on making it more and more bigger - and they enjoy it.
I have heard about a woman who was confessing to the Catholic priest, “I have been raped and I am dying with shame. You cannot understand how miserable I am.”
“But,” the priest said, “this is strange! For three weeks you have been coming every Sunday - how do you manage to be raped every week?”
She said, “Who told you that I am raped every week? It is just the first rape.”
The priest said, “Then for that you have already confessed. Why do you bother me - every Sunday the same rape, the same misery, the same suffering?”
The woman said, “To tell you the truth, I enjoy it. And I cannot tell it to anybody else, so I have to wait for Sunday to confess. But it was really a great experience!”
People are talking about misery and you must think that they want to get rid of that misery - you are wrong. Never try to belittle their misery: they will be very angry and they will never forgive you. They are rejoicing that they have the greatest misery in the world - and you are trying to belittle it or ignore it!
The human mind is a very strange creature. Rather than trying to understand your misery, you start glorifying it. You start feeling a kind of martyrdom - and martyrdom is a disease, a sickness of the soul.
But the whole tradition of humanity has praised the martyrs as great human beings. They were simply masochists who wanted an opportunity to be tortured! Nobody says it is so because that means your whole history has to be written again: it is not about the sincere and the real people, it is about the sick psychopaths.
So if you start enjoying your misery, then there is trouble. It is again the same thing: somebody is enjoying his music; you are enjoying your misery. It has become your music. The moment you enjoy something it becomes difficult for you to watch it. Anything that you have no relationship with can be used as an object of watchfulness - that will be easier.
Once your watchfulness becomes grounded - for example, watch a tree, watch the ocean; watch things with which you don’t have any emotional attachment. Watch the street: people walking, cars moving. Just watch - just a training in watchfulness and watch things with which you don’t have any emotional attachment, investment.