I’ve had a glimpse of what it could be just to be, but so much fear comes up about doing nothing. I have this sense that I am stuck. What is this fear?
Deva Tarshita, the first glimpse of one’s own being is inevitably unbelievable. First, because you have never known it before so you cannot recognize what it is. It is so much vaster than what you have been thinking of as yourself. It is just like a dewdrop coming in contact with the ocean.
The fear is necessary. The dewdrop cannot think in other ways except that slipping into the ocean is death…although it is not true. But we have to be compassionate towards the dewdrop too. It is beyond its comprehension. The ocean is so vast; it is almost a necessity to think, “I will disappear and be lost” – and naturally one becomes tremendously afraid.
Only one thing can be done, and that is to have courage and take a jump. That’s the fundamental function of the master, to tell you, “I was also a dewdrop one day. I was also afraid when I came closer to the ocean. I was also in deep trembling as much as you are – but there was no way of going back. I have known being a dewdrop for millions of lives and it has been nothing but misery and darkness and anxiety. Why not take a chance and see?”
It is risky; one never knows what is going to happen when the dewdrop simply disappears in the ocean. But I can say to you that the dewdrop does not disappear in the ocean. On the contrary, the ocean disappears in the dewdrop. The dewdrop becomes the whole ocean. It is not death, so that you have to be afraid. It is eternal life, for which you have been searching.
I have given you the name Tarshita. Tarshita means “one who is thirsty.” Now that you have come so close to the glimpse of what it means just to be, don’t turn back. Turning back is only for the cowards. This is the most precious moment. Allow it to happen.
The whole of history is a witness that those who have allowed themselves to disappear into the vastness of existence have not really disappeared. On the contrary, for the first time they have found themselves so huge: without any limits, without any boundaries, without any bondages. This is freedom: to be oceanic. To be a dewdrop is to be imprisoned in a small boundary.
Your self is only a dewdrop. The ocean is a no-self.
Gautam Buddha has the right word for it. The language he used was the people’s language of those days, Pali. In Pali “the self” has much more meaning than in the English language. The Pali word for self is atta. The very word is not synonymous only with self, but also contains ego, arrogance. And the word for when the atta disappears into the oceanic existence is anatta. The ego is lost, the arrogance is lost, the anxiety is lost; death disappears, and for the first time you are really and totally alive – in a cosmic sense. For the first time you have touched the eternal.