Essenes say that godliness is darkness, and there is something in it. One thing: darkness is eternal. Light comes and goes and darkness remains. In the morning the sun will rise and there will be light; in the evening the sun will set and there will be darkness. For darkness nothing will rise – it is always there. It never rises and never sets. Light comes and goes; darkness remains. Light always has some source; darkness is without source. That which has some source cannot be infinite; only that which is sourceless can be infinite and eternal. Light has a certain disturbance; that’s why you cannot sleep in light. It creates a tension. Darkness is relaxation, total relaxation.
But why are we afraid of darkness? Because light appears to us as life – it is; and darkness appears to be death – it is. Life comes through light, and when you die it appears you have fallen into eternal darkness. That’s why we paint death as black, and black has become a color for mourning. godliness is light, and death is black. But these are our fears projected. Actually, darkness has infinity; light is limited. Darkness seems to be the womb out of which everything arises and into which everything falls.
Essenes took this standpoint. It is very beautiful and very helpful also, because if you can love darkness you will become unafraid of death. If you can enter into darkness – and you can enter only when there is no fear – you will achieve total relaxation. If you can become one with darkness, you are dissolved, it is a surrender. Now there is no fear, because if you have become one with darkness, you have become one with death. You cannot die now. You have become deathless. Darkness is deathless. Light is born and dies; darkness simply is. It is deathless.
For these techniques, first you will have to remember that there should be no fear in your mind about darkness, about blackness, otherwise how can you do this experiment? First the fear must be dropped. So do one thing as a preliminary step: sit in darkness, put off the lights, feel darkness. Have a loving attitude towards it; allow the darkness to touch you. Look at it. Open your eyes in a dark room or in a dark night; have a communion, be together, imbibe a relationship. You will become afraid – then these techniques cannot be of any help, you cannot do them.
First a deep friendship with darkness is needed. Sometimes in the night when everyone has gone to sleep, remain with the darkness. Don’t do anything, just remain with it. And just remaining with it will give you a deep feeling towards it, because it is so relaxing. You have not known it simply because of the fear. If you are not feeling sleepy, you will put on the light immediately, you will start reading or doing something, but you will not remain with the darkness. Remain with it. If you can remain with it, you will have new openings, new contacts with it.
Man has closed himself completely against darkness. There were reasons, historical reasons – because the night was very dangerous, and man was in the caves or in the jungles. In the day he was more secure: he could see all around, and no wild animals could attack him; or, he could make some arrangements, some defense – at least he could escape. But in the night everywhere was darkness and he was helpless, so he became afraid – and that fear has gone into the unconscious; still we are afraid.