Chapter 5: The Buddha Is Your Birthright
You think, you imagine, but you never watch. Watching is a totally different process. It means you don’t have any likes, any dislikes. You don’t condemn anything, you don’t appreciate either. You simply see and you are aware and you are alert - not dead like a mirror. You are aware. You are watching what is happening.
You see a roseflower; you reflect it and you watch it. You don’t say anything about the rose. You don’t bring words between you and the rose because all those words are useless. When you are confronting a real rose why bring words in? Why destroy the reality of the rose by bringing interpretations of the past? You may be quoting great poets - Shelley and Yeats - but by quoting them you are bringing between you and the rose a barrier. Leave your eyes utterly empty - but don’t fall asleep. Watch, just look silently. Be a witness.
Watching means looking at things without any evaluation, neither saying it is good nor saying it is bad - because nothing is good and nothing is bad. Things are simply what they are.
A rose is a rose and a thorn is a thorn; neither the thorn is bad nor the rose is good. If man disappears from the earth, roses will be there, thorns will be there, but there will be nobody to say that roses are good and thorns are bad. It is our mind that creates these values. And these go on changing.
Just a hundred years ago nobody would have ever thought to put a cactus in one’s home. A cactus is all thorns. If you had brought a cactus into your home, people would have thought you were mad, something had gone wrong with you! But now to grow roses in your home is orthodox. The avant-garde people grow cactuses; they are the really cultured people. They keep cactus plants in their bedrooms too - poisonous, dangerous, but the cactus is “in” and the rose is “out.” Fashions change.
In this century, ugly things have become beautiful and beautiful things have become ugly. Picasso is valuable - one of the ugliest painters the world has ever known! Just two hundred or three hundred years ago he would have been forced to live in a mental asylum if he had painted things like this. He would have been thought insane, utterly insane, because the world of Michelangelo is a totally different world; a different valuation existed. The world of Leonardo da Vinci is a totally different world.
Fashions go on changing. Every day man goes on changing. Nothing is, in fact, good or bad, beautiful or ugly. It all depends on you. Whatsoever you start thinking is good, beautiful, becomes good and beautiful. A Jaina monk moving naked is thought to be great by the Jainas, but others think it a little obscene. Many times problems arise.
Just a few days ago in a village, there was a riot because one Jaina monk entered in the town and the non-Jainas objected that a naked man walking inside the town.. “This is bad for our children and our wives and our daughters.”