Jalaluddin Rumi tried – in the forest, so nobody makes a laughingstock of him – just to know what these children find in twirling. And he was amazed: he discovered one of the greatest methods of meditation, and for twelve hundred years after him, his school has been a living school. His school is called the Whirling Dervishes; in their temple, that is their prayer, that is their meditation. That is their whole religion. They go on twirling for hours together.
Jalaluddin himself became enlightened after thirty-six hours of continuous, nonstop twirling. And when he was asked, “There is no scripture describing this meditation; how have you found it?” He said, “Just by looking at children. I tried it myself, and I was amazed because the more you twirl, the faster you go, soon you become aware that something deep inside you is absolutely still and unmoving. The whole body is moving and the faster it moves, the more is the contrast between the unmoving and the moving. And the unmoving consciousness within is my soul. That is the center of the cyclone.”
Man has much to learn from children – but who cares about children? Everybody is trying to teach them without ever thinking about a simple thing: they are coming out of life’s source, fresh. They must be carrying something which we have forgotten.
If you go backwards and remember, you cannot go farther back than your fourth year, or at the most your third year. Suddenly there comes a wall; your memory cannot penetrate farther back. What happened? You lived those four years – and in fact, those four years were the happiest that you had known. But your experience somehow has been blocked by the society.
It is dangerous for the society that people should be so innocent, like children. Your parents, your teachers, your leaders – with all the good intentions in their hearts – are doing immense harm. They repress the child in you, and the child in you is closer to God than anything else.
This is why so many mystics have insisted: “Unless you are born again, unless you become childlike again, you will not know the truth and you will not know the beauty and you will not know the mystery of existence.”
You can go backwards, remembering, and then suddenly comes a China wall: that is the time when your parents and your teachers started destroying your childhood, making you civilized, making you social, teaching you manners and etiquette, sending you to school, teaching you language and all other worldly ways. And making every effort that you forget completely your innocent days, your days of paradise.
Everybody forgets, but somewhere deep down in the unconscious, the experience of those days goes on echoing. It is this echoing of those experiences that sends you in search, because you cannot accept your miserable life – full of anxiety and tension and psychological sickness – as the meaning of your being here. Vaguely, somewhere, you know that there have been golden moments also. You cannot exactly remember, but an undercurrent in your unconscious goes on creating a longing in you to find those lost moments again.