Chapter 10: No Lower, No Higher
But in the crowd you always lose. In meditation you always gain. Why? What happens in meditation? In meditation you become simple: the future is your concern no more. That’s what meditation is all about: dropping the concern with past and future, being herenow. Only this moment exists. And whenever it happens, whenever only this moment exists - watching a sunrise, or looking at a white cloud floating in the sky, or just being with a tree, silently communing, or observing a bird on the wing - whenever you forget all about past and future and the present moment takes possession of you, when you are utterly possessed by this moment, you will feel rejuvenated. Why? The split disappears, the split created by the ideals. You are one in that moment, integrated; you are all together.
Simplicity is not an ideal; you cannot impose simplicity on yourself. That’s why I never say that people like Mahatma Gandhi are simple. They are not, they cannot be. Simplicity is their ideal, they are trying to attain it. Simplicity is a goal far away in the future, distant, and they are striving, they are straining, they are in great effort. How can you create simplicity out of effort? Simplicity simply means that which is. Out of effort you are trying to improve upon existence.
Existence is perfect as it is, it needs no improvement. The so-called saints go on constantly improving upon themselves - drop this, drop that, repress this, impose that, this is not good, that is good.. Continuous effort, and in this very effort they are lost.
Simplicity is a state of effortlessness; it is humbleness - not the humbleness created against arrogance, not humbleness created against the ego, not humbleness opposite to the proud mind. No, humbleness is not opposite to pride. Humbleness is simply absence of pride. Try to see the point. If your humbleness is against your pride, if you have strived to drop your pride, your ego, your arrogance, then what you have done is only repression. Now you will become proud about your humbleness; now you will start bragging, how humble you are. This is what happens. Just see the so-called humble people - they are constantly broadcasting that they are humble.
The really humble people will not know that they are humble; how can they then brag about it? How can the humble person know that he is humble? The humble person is a person no more. The humble person is in a state of fana: the humble person has dissolved. Now he is only a presence. Humbleness is a presence, not a characteristic of personality, not a trait, but just a presence. Others will feel it, but you will not be able to feel it yourself. So is the case with simplicity.
Simplicity simply means living moment to moment spontaneously, not according to some philosophy, not according to Jainism, Buddhism, Hinduism, not according to any philosophy. Whenever you live according to a philosophy you have betrayed yourself, you are an enemy to yourself. Simplicity means to be in a deep friendship with oneself, to live your life with no idea interfering.
It needs guts, certainly, because you will be living constantly in insecurity. The man who lives with ideals is secure. He is predictable; that is his security. He knows what he is going to do tomorrow. He knows, if a certain situation arises, this is the way he will react to it. He is always certain. The man who is simple knows nothing about tomorrow, knows nothing about the next moment, because he is not going to act out of his past. He will respond out of his present awareness.