Those who know, they know something totally different. They know that “I am not – God is.” They know that “My existence is arbitrary. My existence is a make-believe. ‘I’ as a separate entity has never existed. I am just a wave in the ocean.”
But when the wave is arising and reaching to the clouds, it can believe that “I am.” And the ocean meanwhile is laughing and roaring, and knows that this wave has gone crazy. Soon the wave will disappear in the ocean again. Even when it is there, it is not separate from the ocean. You cannot separate a wave from the ocean! Can you exist even for a single moment without the universe surrounding you? Not for a single moment.
So who are you? what are you?
“Is it the recognition that one is ultimately, fundamentally ignorant?”
No. The conscious ignorance knows that one is not. There is utter silence inside. Nobody has ever been there. You have dreamt about it; it is your dream. You are nothing but a construct of your dreaming mind.
And, secondly, ignorance does not mean that one is ignorant. It simply means that life is ultimately mysterious. The emphasis is not on your ignorance, remember it, because the ego is very cunning. It can survive even on the idea of ignorance. It can say, “I am ignorant – fundamentally, ultimately I am ignorant. But I am.”
First it was claiming its existence through knowledge: “My knowledge is valid. Nobody else’s knowledge is valid.” Now it claims, “No knowledge is valid – I am ignorant. But I am.” Now, behind ignorance, the I is hiding again. It has taken another face, a new mask, a new persona, but it is the old game being played with new rules. The form has changed but the content is the same – the same dream, the same stupid dream. The same arbitrary ego claiming absoluteness about itself.
No. When I say ignorance, my emphasis is never on I. My emphasis is on the ultimate mysteriousness of existence. Ignorance is ultimate because existence cannot be reduced to knowledge. It is irreducible. It is a mystery, and remains a mystery. You cannot demystify it.
In fact, the more you try to demystify it, the more and more mysterious it becomes. It gathers new dimensions of mysteries.
Just watch: five thousand years of human mind’s evolution – has it helped in any way to demystify existence? Existence has become far more mysterious than it has ever been before. Go back five thousand years: there was a limited number of stars, because by the bare naked eye you cannot count more than three thousand stars in the night. When the night is dark and full of stars and there are no clouds, at the most you can count three thousand stars, not more than that, by the bare naked eye. How many stars are there? Now they say, “We have counted three thousand billion stars. We used to see only three thousand, now there are three thousand billion stars. And this is not the end: this is just the beginning of the counting.”