Chapter 16: It Is Already the Best
The first question:
I am feeling helpless. I don’t know what I can do any more. It is as if everything I do won’t change this, it only makes things worse. But also doing nothing does not make things better. You say that emptiness is bliss. For me it seems to be dull and boring; it is like being dead. When there is nothing I cannot see any beauty in it. I am fed up with it, I want to get out of it. Please answer me, but please don’t answer me like this: that taking sannyas would change everything and make everything beautiful. Thank you.
The first thing is to understand that life remains the same whatsoever you do. It is already perfect; it cannot be improved upon. The very idea of improving it is egoistic; it is the cause of our misery. It is the way it is - there is no need to improve it. Enjoy it! Don’t waste your time in improving it. If you try to improve it you will feel helpless, obviously, because you will be failing again and again, falling short. And your desire can never be fulfilled - it isn’t in the very nature of things.
Aes dhammo sanantano, Gautam the Buddha has said: This is the way things are. Whenever people used to ask him, “How can we improve upon things?” he will always say, “Aes dhammo sanantano.” There is no need to improve, there is no way to improve.
And in this Isa Upanishad we have come across this truth again and again: aum. That is perfect, that is whole. This is perfect, this is whole. The whole comes from the whole, the perfect comes from the perfect. How it can be imperfect? The whole comes from the whole, yet the whole remains behind. Everything is as it should be.
Unless this is understood.Buddha calls it tathata, suchness. The rose is rose, the marigold is marigold. The effort to make a marigold a rose is doomed to fail. Then there is helplessness, misery, failure. The ego feels hurt, wounded.
This is the first thing: a deep, total acceptance of things as they are. Then life enters into a different dimension - the dimension of joy, celebration - because then the whole energy is available to dance, sing, to be.
Now the whole energy is engaged into improving, into changing, into making things better.
You say: “I am feeling helpless.”
You are causing this helplessness yourself.
You say: “I don’t know what I can do any more.”