The second question:
If one begins to feel that life is a psychodrama, then one also feels detached and lonely. Thus, the intensity, sincerity and depth of living is lost. Please suggest what to do in this situation. What then is the right attitude toward life?
“If one begins to feel that life is a psychodrama, then one also feels detached and lonely….”
Then feel it! Why create a problem? If you feel detached and lonely, then feel it! But we go on creating problems. Whatsoever happens, we will create a problem out of it. Feel lonely and detached – And if you can be at ease with your loneliness, it will disappear. If you start doing something with it to transcend it, it will never disappear; it will remain there. Now a modern trend in psychology and psychoanalysis says that anything can disappear if you remain with it without creating any problems, and this has been one of the oldest teachings of Tantra.
For the last ten or twelve years, in Japan, a small psychotherapeutic technique has been in use. Western psychoanalysts and psychiatrists have been studying it. It is a Zen therapy, and it is wonderful. If someone goes neurotic or psychotic, that man or woman is simply put into a lonely room and he or she is told, “Remain with yourself, whatsoever you are. Neurotic? Okay! Then be neurotic and live with it.” And the doctors do not interfere. Food is provided, needs will he fulfilled, attention will be given, but there is no interference. The patient has to live with himself, and within ten days he starts changing. Western psychoanalysis works for years, and basically nothing changes.
What happens to this Zen patient? There is no interference from outside. There is just acceptance of the fact that “Okay, you are neurotic. Nothing can be done.” Zen says that one tree is small and another tree is very big, so okay: one is small, another is big, and nothing can be done. Once you accept a thing, you are already transcending it.
One of the most original psychiatrists of England, R. D. Laing, has now proposed that if we can leave a madman to himself, just paying loving attention to him, fulfilling his needs and not interfering with him, he will get over his madness within three or four weeks. His proposal is that no madness can last for more than ten days if it is not interfered with. If you interfere, then you prolong the process.