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Chapter 1: The World of Tantra

So this is rare: Devi is sitting in the lap of Shiva and asking, and Shiva answers. It is a love dialogue - no conflict, as if Shiva is speaking to himself. Why this emphasis on love - love language? Because if you are in love with your master, then the whole gestalt changes; it becomes different. Then you are not hearing his words. Then you are drinking him. Then words are irrelevant. Really, the silence between the words becomes more significant. What he is saying may be meaningful or it may not be meaningful. but it is his eyes, his gestures, his compassion, his love.

That is why Tantra has a fixed device, a structure. Every treatise starts with Devi asking and Shiva answering. No argument is going to be there, no wastage of words. There are very simple statements of fact, telegraphic messages with no view to convince, but just to relate.

If you encounter Shiva with a question with a closed mind, he will not answer you in this way. First your closedness has to be broken. Then he will have to be aggressive. Then your prejudices, then your preconceptions have to be destroyed. Unless you are cleared completely of your past, nothing can be given to you. But this is not so with his consort Devi; with Devi there is no past.

Remember, when you are deeply in love your mind ceases to be. There is no past; only the present moment becomes everything. When you are in love the present is the only time, the now is all - no past, no future. So Devi is just open. There is no defense - nothing to be cleared, nothing to be destroyed. The ground is ready, only a seed has to be dropped. The ground is not only ready, but welcoming, receptive, asking to be impregnated.

So all these sayings that we are going to discuss will be telegraphic. They are just sutras, but each sutra, each telegraphic message given by Shiva is worth a Veda, worth a Bible, worth a Koran. Each single sentence can become the base of a great scripture. Scriptures are logical - you have to propose, defend, argue. Here there is no argument, just simple statements of love.

Thirdly, the very words Vigyan Bhairav Tantra mean the technique of going beyond consciousness. Vigyan means consciousness, bhairav means the state which is beyond consciousness, and tantra means the method: the method of going beyond consciousness. This is the supreme doctrine - without any doctrine.

We are unconscious, so all the religious teachings are concerned with how to go beyond unconsciousness, how to be conscious. For example, Krishnamurti, Zen, they are all concerned with how to create more consciousness, because we are unconscious. So how to be more aware, alert? From unconsciousness, how to move toward consciousness?

But Tantra says that this is a duality - unconscious and conscious. If you move from unconsciousness to consciousness, you are moving from one duality to another. Move beyond both! Unless you move beyond both you can never reach the ultimate, so be neither the unconscious nor the conscious; just go beyond, just be. Be neither the conscious nor the unconscious - just be! This is going beyond Yoga, going beyond Zen, going beyond all teachings.

Vigyan means consciousness, and bhairav is a specific term, a Tantra term for one who has gone beyond. That is why Shiva is known as Bhairava and Devi is known as Bhairavi - those who have gone beyond the dualities.

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