He who goes naked,
with matted hair, mud-bespattered,
who fasts and sleeps on the ground
and smears his body with ashes
and sits in endless meditation –
so long as he is not free from doubts,
he will not find freedom.
But he who lives purely and self-assured
in quietness and virtue,
who is without harm or hurt or blame,
even if he wears fine clothes,
so long as he also has faith
he is a true seeker.
A noble horse rarely
feels the touch of the whip.
Who is there in this world as blameless?
Then like a noble horse
smart under the whip,
burn and be swift.
Believe, meditate, see.
Be harmless, be blameless.
Awake to the law.
And from all sorrow free yourself.
The farmer channels water to his land.
The fletcher whittles his arrows.
The carpenter turns his wood.
And the wise man masters himself.
Gautama the Buddha has no philosophy of life. He is not a philosopher at all. He is a man of insight, he is wise; he knows how to see into life, into reality. He has a way of seeing but not a philosophy of life. He has a way of living but not a philosophy of life.
A philosophy of life is a false substitute – it is avoiding transformation of your being. You can learn beautiful words, systems of thought, ideologies, and you can become so much engrossed in them that you can forget totally that you don’t know even yourself, that you don’t know how to see that you are blind, that you have not been able to create light in your heart, that the flame is absent, that you are living in deep darkness; that your life may be very sophisticated, cultured, but it is not true life. You live on the surface; you don’t know its depths and its heights. It has both deep valleys and high peaks, but to reach to those depths and those peaks you will have to pass through an alchemical process.
Buddha is an alchemist. He shows you the way how to transform your energies from the lowest to the highest center of functioning, from the mud to the lotus, from the baser metal into gold, from stones into diamonds. He is a scientist of the inner. His approach is utterly scientific, not philosophic at all.
That’s why he could not fit with the Indian mind; the Indian mind is too philosophical. The Indian mind has learned too much jargon, it has become very skillful in splitting hairs. Buddha is not concerned at all with all that nonsense. He goes directly to the problem.