Chapter 8: I Treat Jesus as a Poet
You carry an inner climate that goes on changing, just like the outer climate. Have you watched it? Sometimes you are sad and you look at the moon and the moon looks sad, very sad. You are sad and a fragrance comes from the garden and it seems very sad. You look at the flowers: rather than making you happy, they make you heavy. Then in another moment you are happy, alive, flowing, smiling - the same fragrance comes and surrounds you, dances around you, and makes you tremendously happy. The same flower.and when you see it opening, something opens within you also. The same moon, and you cannot believe how much silence and how much beauty descends on you. There is a deep participation: you become partners in some deep mystery. But it depends on you. The moon is the same, the flower is the same - it depends on you.
Old languages are very flowing. In Sanskrit there are words.. One word can have twelve meanings. You can go on playing with it and it will reveal many things to you. It will change with you, it will always adjust to you. That’s why great works of classical literature are eternal. They are never exhausted.
But today’s newspaper will be worthless tomorrow, because it has no vitality of meaning. It simply says what it means; it has nothing more in it. Tomorrow you will look foolish reading it. It is ordinary prose; it gives you information but it has no depth, it is flat.
Two thousand years have passed since Jesus spoke and his words are still as alive and fresh as ever. They are never going to be old. They don’t age, they remain fresh and young. What is their secret? The secret is that they mean so many things that you can always find a new door in them. It is not a one-room apartment. Jesus says, “My God’s house has many mansions.” You can enter from many doors, and there are always new treasures to be revealed, to be discovered. You never come on the old landscape again. It has a certain infinity. That’s why I go on changing. Yes, whenever I feel, I change the meaning. But that is the way Jesus himself has done it.
In translating the Hebrew Bible into English, much has been lost. In translating the Gita into modern languages, much has been lost. In translating the Koran, the whole beauty is gone because the Koran is a poetry. It is something to be sung, it is something you should dance with. It is not prose. Prose is not the way of religion; poetry is the way.
Remember this always and don’t get confined. Jesus is vast and the English Bible is very small. I can understand the resistance of old people that their books should not be translated. It has a deep significance. You can translate prose, there is no trouble. If you want to translate a book on the theory of relativity into any language it may be difficult, but the difficulty is not the same as it is with the Bible, the Gita or the Koran. It can be translated, nothing will be lost; it has no poetry in it. But when you translate poetry, much will be lost because each language has its own rhythm and each language has its own ways of expression. Each language has its own meter and music; it cannot be translated into another language. That music will be missed, that rhythm will be missed. You will have to replace it by some other rhythm and some other music. So it is possible.ordinary poetry may be translated, but when the poetry is really superb, of the other world.the more deep and great it is, the more difficult it is - almost impossible.