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Chapter 1: Pursuit of Knowledge

Nasruddin was very depressed. Then the thirteenth child was born - what to do? So he thought, it is better now not to go to the king - go to the forest and commit suicide, as the king has said. So he went to the forest, he prepared everything to hang himself, just a split second and he would have been hanging under the tree dead - and then suddenly he said to himself, “Nasruddin! Beware! You may be hanging the wrong man!”

A father simply believes, a mother knows. Knowing is like a mother, knowledge is like a father.

All knowledge is belief. Knowing is not belief, it is knowing. It is your perception it is your vision it is your growth. It is just like the mother - the child grows in her womb, she knows, the child is her part, her own extension, her own being, blood and bone. A father is extrinsic, he is not intrinsic. He simply believes that the child is his.

A man of knowledge believes that he knows. A man of knowing knows.

Knowing is a transformation in your being, it is like a pregnancy - you have to carry it. u have to give birth to yourself. A resurrection into eternity, a turning away from time and a moving in no time, a conversion from mind to no mind, but something so tremendous that you know it is happening in you.

A man of knowledge goes on collecting dust from buddhas. Those who have known, he believes in them. Whatsoever he believes in is dead. He has not given birth to himself. He has collected knowledge from others, everything is borrowed - and how can knowledge be borrowed? How can being be borrowed? If knowledge is going to be true it is going to be of the nature of being.

George Gurdjieff used to ask people - seekers who would come to him - the first thing he used to ask is: “Are you interested in knowledge or being? Because here we give being and we are not concerned about knowledge, so you decide well. If you are concerned with knowledge, go somewhere else. If you are concerned with being, remain here. But make a very clear decision.”

What is the difference between being and knowledge? The same as the difference between knowledge and knowing. Knowing is being.

It is not something that is being added to you, it is something you grow into. Knowledge is something which is added to you. You don’t grow through it; rather you carry it as a burden. So you will always find a man of knowledge burdened, heavily burdened. Mountains of knowledge he is carrying on his shoulders. You will see his face very serious, deadly serious, and his heart completely crushed under the burden.

A man of knowing is weightless. He has nothing to carry, he can fly into the sky. The gravitation of the earth does not affect him. He is not pulled towards the earth because the earth can pull only that which is heavy. He remains on the earth but he is not of the earth. That is the meaning of Jesus’ saying, he says again and again, “My kingdom is not of this world.” It is of some other world, the world of being, of eternity.

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