Chapter 21: This Too Will Pass.
Who was the master who discovered or invented the latihan meditation technique? Would you like explain this meditation technique?
Latihan is a unique method - unique in the sense that it is the only method that has come out of this century, and unique also because it happened to a man who was not searching for truth, who was not a seeker. It is also unique in that it has no parallel in any old methods of meditation.
Latihan was found by a Mohammedan in Indonesia, Bapak Subud. He was not in any way involved with the other world, with life beyond death, or with life herenow. He was just chopping wood on his farm and suddenly it happened: his ax fell from his hands and he started to make gestures, postures which he had never done. He himself could not believe what he was doing and why, but the force was so tremendous that in spite of himself, he had to do it.
He went into something almost like a dynamic meditation - shouting, running, jumping, just a pure play of energy for no reason at all.
And then he fell into a deep silence, the deepest he had ever dreamt of, and when he woke up in the afternoon, just three or four hours afterwards, he was totally a new man. That happening changed him. He was no more a Mohammedan, he was no more his old personality, his old self.
He started teaching his close friends. To whomsoever he said this was a meditation, they laughed. But his intimate circle of friends were persuaded by him.”At least you should give it a try.”
A few tried, a few succeeded - and this happened just thirty years ago.
After the experience, one feels utterly relaxed, no tensions in the mind, no tensions in the body. And a great joy arises from your interiority, not dependent on anything outside you. You are for the first time a universe unto yourself. For your happiness, for your joy, you are no longer dependent. You alone can live on a deserted star, joyously.
Slowly, latihan became a world movement. But there were a few basic flaws in it; hence, the movement has disappeared - like a fashion that has come in vogue and now it seems to be some historical fact - and it has happened just within these thirty years.
First, Bapak Subud could not explain it, or why it happened to him. He was not religious, he was not philosophical, he was not interested in the esoteric side of life. The mysteries of life had never been a challenge to him. He was a very earthly man. He simply said, “It descended upon me from beyond. I don’t know why - I have no explanation for why I was chosen.”
But because it happened to a man who knew nothing about meditations, who never meditated - at least according to his conscious memory - it was natural that the method, the technique, must have some weaknesses, some loopholes. It is not a device created by a master; it is a very accidental thing.