Chapter 9: Experience: The Heart of the Matter
Buddha can be seen only when there is darkness all around. If there are millions of buddhas, Buddha will disappear. Not that he will not be there! He will be there but how will you see him? How will you find him? In a really spiritual world, again, there will be no enlightened people. Not that there will not be enlightened people; but enlightenment will be so natural, so spontaneous, that you will not be able to find who is Buddha. All will be buddhas!
Enlightened people can be seen only against the darkness.
In India enlightened people have existed against the darkness. The society is very unenlightened. People are dark holes. Amidst such darkness, whenever a star is born it is brilliant, it is bright. You can see it, you cannot forget it for centuries and centuries! You worship it because it is so rare.
One thing to be remembered: for an enlightened person to be recognized as enlightened, great masses of unenlightened people are needed, but the vice versa is not true. I am not saying that if in a certain society no enlightened person exists, that it means that the whole society is enlightened; the vice versa is not true. But this is absolutely true: that an enlightened person can be recognized only against the unenlightened. The rich person can be recognized only against the poor, and the beautiful person can be recognized only against the ugly. If all people are beautiful, as plastic surgeons think that soon it will be possible - all people will have beauty - then beauty contests will disappear. There will be no beauty queens anymore. The beauty queen can exist, Miss Universe can exist, only amidst great ugliness; otherwise it is not possible. If all people become meditators, if all people become silent, how will you feel a Buddha? Not that Buddha will disappear; Buddha will be there. And Buddha will be very happy that he need not be recognized at all, and he will be very happy because no work will be left for him, he can rest and relax. But he will not be recognized at all.
You can count enlightened people on your fingers: a Buddha, a Christ, a Krishna, a Lao Tzu. Why? - because the greater mass of people has remained immensely dark, immensely ugly, immensely barbarian.
Remember this: a buddha, his existence, does not make a country enlightened. The people start repeating his words easily but the people are not enlightened. It is like this: Edison discovered electricity; now everybody uses electricity, but everybody is not an Edison. And even when you use electricity what do you know about it? Just pushing the button, you think you know much about electricity? You can put it on and off - do you think you know much about electricity? In fact Edison himself had said that he does not know what this electricity is. He had stumbled upon its utility but its inner reality remained a mystery.