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Chapter 21: Nature Is Not Anguish, It Is Blissfulness

I have not done anything to time! - but you have realized a certain quality of time. When you are in a certain stable situation, you will feel the movement of time differently, on two counts. One is that when you are in that false, permanent state, time will go slower, that is your feeling. But when that state is no more, remembering it, you will be surprised that it looks as if time went fast.

And when you are in a state of moment-to-moment living, time may feel just the opposite of the first: it will look as if it is going so fast that you cannot believe it. But looking backwards, it will look as if lives of time have passed - and perhaps only months have passed. This is part of the relativity theory of Albert Einstein, and I feel that he has come very close to the truth.

I have not done anything to time; just the situation from being in a commune which looked stable - everything unchanging, tomorrow was certain, it will be just like today - the time moved slowly. But looking backwards you will be surprised at those four and a half years, just how long they were.

And when the commune is dispersed and there is no home, each moment has got a tremendous reality, because the next moment nobody knows what is going to happen. So you start living in the moment, and when you live in the moment, it is big, it is deep. Moment to moment it will look as if you are living a long time, but looking backwards you will be surprised that you have been in this position only for two or three months.

What has happened? When you feel a kind of permanent state, you don’t go deep into the moment. You just touch the surface and move on to another.

When you are living moment to moment, you have to go deep into the moment, live it totally, squeeze the whole juice of it, because the other moment may not be there - this may be the last moment. In this way you make time a tremendously deep phenomenon, but when you look backwards, you will not think that it was a long time.

Albert Einstein was asked again and again about his theory of relativity, and he used to give this example: If you are sitting on a hot stove, time seems to be too long; and when you are sitting with your girlfriend, time seems to be too short. The whole night has passed and you wonder - how quickly! Time is the same - just our attitudes, our experiences change the perspective.

And being homeless is a great experience of freedom, of no boundaries, of no shelter, of no security. The home is, on one hand, a cozy place, secure, safe; but on the other hand, it is a kind of imprisonment. And you have to make so many compromises to be in the home, with the wife, with the children, with the parents - everything. You are not free; you have compromised on so many things, you cannot feel that you are yourself.

Homeless, you are yourself: no compromise, no security. And in fact life is insecure - that’s a reality. It is not safe - that’s a reality. Whatever you do is not going to help you.

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