You have never died, you have never been born. You have been eternally here and you will be eternally here. You are part of this whole existence. You cannot be separated from it.
Sometimes you may have been in the trees, you may have been a tree. Sometimes in the birds, and you may have been a bird, and sometimes a rock, and sometimes a stream falling from the Himalayas…millions of ways, millions of forms, millions of names. Yes, you have existed in many, many ways. It was never that you were not, it will never be that you will not be; the form changes, the formless goes on and on and on. There is nothing to be serious…but the ego is afraid, apprehensive – death is coming. The ego is a weight, the ego cannot laugh.
My whole effort is to create such a deep laughter in you that the laughter remains, you disappear; the dance remains, the dancer disappears. Then life is tremendously beautiful – and only then life is beautiful.
So don’t think about me as you do of other religious people who are very serious. If they are serious they cannot be religious – that is my criterion. If your saints cannot laugh, they may be suppressed sinners, at the most, because a suppressed person cannot laugh. He is always afraid – with laughter many other things may escape. He has to suppress everything: the anger, the sex, the greed, the hatred, the love. Now he cannot allow only laughter to escape, because this is a deep secret: either you are totally expressive or you are not. You cannot be part-expressive. Your so-called saints have to suppress everything totally. And to me a saint is one who has no suppression in his being: When he laughs, he laughs; his whole being is involved…ripples of laughter.
Remember this, and this will be very, very meaningful to remember in reference to Hasidism. Hasidism has created the greatest tradition of laughing saints. That is one of the most beautiful contributions of Hasidism.
A Hasid sage is not one who has renounced the world. He lives in the world, because to renounce looks much too serious. He does not go away from the marketplace, he goes above. He lives where you live but he lives in a different way. He exists by your side, but simultaneously exists somewhere else. He has joined the sansar, the world, and sannyas, the renunciation.
When I give sannyas to you, I am doing a Hasidic work. I don’t tell you to move to the Himalayas because that will be a choice, and a choice is always serious because you have to leave something. You have to cut a part of your being, you have to cripple yourself, and you choose and you move in a certain direction – the whole is not accepted. You live in the world, then you reject renunciation, sannyas; then you reject meditation. You say, “They are not for us. We are worldly people.” Then one day you get fed up with the world, you leave the world. Now you are afraid to come into the world because now you say, “We are unworldly people, we live outside the world.” But in both the ways you remain half-hearted, you are never total.