Chapter 14: The Function of a Master
Santa Ana Register, Orange County, California, United States
The Santa Ana Register is in Orange County, which is appropriate, I think. I’ve done many articles about Rajneeshees but I never thought I’d get the chance to come here.
They said it was safe to tell you that I’m a little nervous!
One of the things that I’ve heard you say on videotape, is that you tell jokes to wake the world up. When did the world go to sleep, and is it waking up?
It has been always asleep; only a few individuals in the whole history of man have been awakened - their names can be counted on the ten fingers - not more than that. And it was natural: man has evolved out of the animals, animals are in a deep sleep, they don’t know that they are. That is the meaning of sleep: one is, but one is not aware that one is. No animal is aware of himself.
I agree with Charles Darwin, on different grounds. His grounds are ordinary, mundane, and can be criticized - have been criticized. In fact, he is no longer an accepted scientist about the evolution of humanity, the majority of scientists have deserted him. But I support him on totally different grounds. My grounds are, looking at man’s sleep it is the only possibility that he has grown up from the animals - monkeys, chimpanzees - whatsoever, whosoever was there in the beginning. Man’s sleep proves it. And only rarely, once in a while, a Gautam Buddha, a Bodhidharma, a Socrates. Once in a while there has been a man who has the guts to come out of sleep.
It needs tremendous courage to come out of sleep because we have so much invested in sleep. It is just like a man who is dreaming that he is living in a golden palace, with a great kingdom, with all the luxuries, and you try to wake him up. He is just a beggar on the street.
Only beggars dream of being emperors; emperors never dream of being emperors, that will be simply illogical. The beggar has so much investment in his sleep and his dream that he will resist being awakened in every possible way. He will get irritated, he will oppose you: “Who are you to interfere in my life? Can’t you even tolerate a man who is having a sweet dream?” And even if you force him to be awakened, he is going to fall asleep again, because waking he is only a beggar, asleep he becomes an emperor.
The investment in psychological sleep is tremendous. That’s why all those people - Gautam Buddha, Bodhidharma, Chuang Tzu, Plotinus, Heraclitus - have failed. They did their best; they struggled against the sleep of man, but still man is asleep, and whatever he is doing proves that he is asleep.