Chapter 15: Religion Is Desirelessness
Hence the search for the divine is not an outer search. In this search it is not necessary to go to the Himalayas or to wander in the mountains of Tibet; Mecca or Medina will not help either, nor will Kashi and Prayag or Girnar or Jerusalem. No outer search has anything to do with the divine; hence you will not find it in any temple or place of pilgrimage. And because of this a difficulty arises: if it were in some temple, in some holy place on Mount Everest or on Kailash, you could easily go there. That would be very easy because the outer journey is not difficult at all, you can travel anywhere you want.
But in the search for the divine, the difficulty is that it is not at the end of the journey - it is present within the seeker from the very beginning. It is not a goal to be reached, it is the innermost core of the traveler. If you are searching for it on the outside you will not find it, exactly because of your outside searching. You are looking in the wrong place. If you want to search for it you will have to look within. If you want to search you will have to stop wandering to holy places and look within. To seek the divine all the doors of the senses need to be closed, because the more you search on the outside the farther away you will go from it. The more you think that it is outside you the more you will forget that it is within you.
The divine is not a person, so there is no way to see it on the outside. The divine is an energy. But that energy also is not material: it is subjective, it is your innermost energy. This is why the first realization of it happens only when you look within yourself.
You never remember to look within yourself. You wander everywhere, you search everywhere; your eyes, your ears, your hands don’t leave any place unexplored. And everyone is not searching for the divine exactly: someone is searching for bliss, someone is searching for peace, someone else is searching for liberation. You may give it different names but all these names are for the same search, the search for the divine. One thing is certain: everyone is searching, though the names for their search are different.
And there are only two alternatives: you can either search within yourself or you can search on the outside. These are the two dimensions. And the one who searches on the outside will go on wandering, because even the first small glimpses will be happening from within. First it must be known within your innermost core of being. Because someone who cannot realize the divine within himself, how can he see it on the outside? If your inner flame is unlit you can go on searching everywhere, and wherever you will go you will find only darkness because you are carrying it within yourself. You will not find the light. But if your inner flame is lit you can go into deep darkness and there will be light because you carry your light within you. The search for the divine is a search into the depths of your own interiority, your own subjectivity.
This sutra says:
“The true nature of God is not seen as one sees sense-objects; it is not seen with those eyes. When brought into one’s meditation through persistent contemplation, it is seen by the pure intelligence of a clear and unwavering heart. The one who knows this to be so has gone beyond death.”