Chapter 10: Cutting the Root of Misery
What is the goal of meditation?
There is no goal of meditation. Meditation is the dropping of all goals, hence it can’t have a goal of its own; that will be against its very nature. Goals exist in the future; meditation is to be in the present. There is no meeting ground between the present and the future - the future exists not - how can the nonexistential meet the existential? That is impossible The future is our creation, it is our imagination. We create it for a certain purpose; the purpose is to avoid the present. We don’t want to be in the present, we want to escape from the present. The future gives us an escape. To live in the future is to be an escapist.
Whatsoever the goal - it does not matter what that goal is - it may be God-realization, it may be attainment of nirvana - still it is a goal and any goal is against meditation. But our whole mind exists in the future; our mind is against the present. In the present the mind dies. How can the mind exist in the present? If you are utterly now, utterly here, there is no question of mind. You cannot think because thinking needs space and the present has no space in it. It is just like a needle point - it cannot contain anything, not even a single thought.
Hence if you want to live in the mind, either you have to live in the past or in the future; these are the two ways. The old-fashioned, the orthodox, the conventional - the Christians, the Mohammedans, the Hindus - they live in the past, and the so-called revolutionaries, the progressives, the avant-garde, they live in the future. The communists, the socialists, the Fabians, the utopians, all kinds of idealists, they live in the future. On the surface they seem to be very different - the Catholic and the communist seem to be antagonistic. Deep down they are not antagonistic at all. They belong to the same category, they are doing the same work: they both are escaping from the present.
The Hindu lives in the golden age that has passed. His golden age was somewhere far, far away in the past, it is only a memory, it has never been there. That past is simply a creation of imaginative people, but it helps them to escape from the present. Hindus call it ramrajya - the kingdom of God; it was so in the past, and since then man has been falling down. Hence Hindus cannot agree with Charles Darwin, with the idea of evolution. Hindus have a totally different idea - the idea of involution, not evolution. Man is not progressing, man is regressing Man is falling every day, man is going downhill. The peaks are left in the past - the golden peaks, the sunlit peaks.