Chapter 1: The Significance of Zen
The feminine consciousness is extremely introvert. A woman lives in herself; she has a very small world around her, the most minimum possible. That is why you cannot interest a woman in things of great vastness. No. You cannot talk about Vietnam to her, she doesn’t bother. Vietnam is too far away, too outer. She is concerned with her family, her husband, the child, the dog, the furniture, the radio set, the TV. A very small world is around her, just the minimum. Because she doesn’t have a very big world around it is very difficult for man and woman to talk intelligently - they live in different worlds. A woman is beautiful only when she keeps quiet; the moment she starts talking then stupid things come out of her. She cannot talk intelligently. She cannot be very philosophic, no, that’s not possible. These things are too far away, she doesn’t bother. She lives in the very small circle of her own world, and she is the center. And whatsoever is meaningful is meaningful only in concern to herself - otherwise it is not meaningful. She cannot see why you are bothered about Vietnam. What is the matter with you? You are not related to the Vietnamese at all. Whether there is a war happening or not, it is no concern of yours. And the child is ill and you are bothering about Vietnam! She cannot believe that she is present near you and you are reading the newspaper.
Women live in a different world. A woman is centripetal, introvert. All women are Indian - wherever they are it makes no difference. Man is centrifugal, he goes out. The moment he can find an excuse he will escape from the home. He comes to the home only when he cannot go anywhere else; when all the clubs and hotels are closed, then, what to do? He comes back home. Nowhere to go, he comes home.
A woman is always home-centered, home based. She goes out only when it is absolutely necessary, when she cannot do otherwise. When it has become an absolute necessity she goes out. Otherwise she is home based.
Man is a vagabond, a wanderer. The whole of family life is created by women, not by men. In fact, civilization exists because of woman, not because of man. If he is allowed he will be a wanderer - no home, no civilization. Man is outgoing, woman is ingoing; man is extrovert, woman is introvert. Man is always interested in something other than himself, that’s why he looks more healthy. Because when you are too concerned with yourself, you become ill. Man is more happy looking.
You will always find women sad and too concerned with themselves. A little headache, and they are very concerned, because they live inside - the headache becomes something big, out of proportion. But a man can forget the headache, he has too many other headaches. He creates so many headaches around himself that there is no possibility of coming upon his own headache and making something out of it. It is always so little he can forget about it. A woman is always concerned - something is happening in the leg, something in the hand, something in the back, something in the stomach, always something - because her own consciousness is focused inwards. A man is less pathological, more healthy, more out-going, more concerned about what is happening to others.
That’s why, in all religions, you will find that if there are five persons present, four will be women, and one a man. And that one man may have only come because of some woman - the wife was going to the temple so he had to go with her. Or, she was going to listen to a talk on religion, so he came with her. In all churches this will be the proportion, in all churches, temples, wherever you go. Even with Buddha this was the proportion, with Mahavira this was the proportion. With Buddha there were fifty thousand sannyasins - forty thousand women and ten thousand men. Why?