Chapter 12: “Instant” Pathology
For the first time in human history the politician is immensely powerful, tremendously powerful. The politician has always been dangerous - the politician is the most insane person possible - but he has never been so powerful. He has always been mad, but this time the mad man has the H-bomb.
Hence the children who were born after the second world war are very conscious that something has to be done soon, and fast; immediately. Hence the word instant has become very, very important - instant coffee and instant sex and instant enlightenment. Everything has to be just now - now or never. Who knows about tomorrow? You cannot trust. Tomorrow has never been so uncertain as it is today. That’s why.
First, the Western idea of one life, then second, the Western invention of the H-bomb, the possibility of the whole world disappearing in flames, have created an intense desire to know, to love, to be.
Time-consciousness, too much time-consciousness, is a tension in the being. It does not allow you to relax. And now comes the dilemma: if you really want to be enlightened, the most necessary requirement is not to be tense. And if you want enlightenment instantly, then it is impossible because you are so tense. That’s why you ask for it to be right now.
If you ever want enlightenment to happen, you have to be ready to wait for it. Even if it comes in eternity you are ready to accept it, you are not in a hurry. Then it can come instantly too. A man who is ready to wait forever is very relaxed, knows no tension, no anxiety, no anguish. In that relaxed moment, satori, samadhi, enlightenment is possible.
I will tell you an ancient Hindu parable.
A great saint, Narada, was going to paradise. He used to travel between paradise and earth; he used to function like a postman between that world and this world. He was a bridge.
He came across an ancient sage, very old, doing his transcendental meditation - TM - under a tree, repeating his mantra. He had been repeating that mantra for many years and many lives. Narada asked him, “Would you like to inquire about something? Would you like some message to be given to the lord?”
The old man opened his eyes and said, “You just inquire about one thing: how much longer do I have to wait? How long? Tell him it is too much; for many lives I have been doing this mantra, now how long am I expected to do it? Just ask this. I am tired of it. I am bored with it.”
Just by the side of the ancient sage, underneath another tree, was a young man with an ektara, a one-stringed instrument, playing it and dancing. Must have been a kind of Baul.
Narada asked him jokingly, “Would you also like to inquire about how long it will take for your enlightenment to happen?” But the young man did not even bother to answer, he continued his dance. Narada asked again, “I am going to the lord. Have you some message?” But the young man laughed and continued to dance.