Self-actualization refers to the highest peak of your growth, where you can feel a deep content, where you can say, “This is my destiny, this is for what I was meant, this is why I am here on earth.” Tantra is concerned with that self-actualization – with how to help you grow more. And remember, Tantra is concerned with you, not with ideals. Tantra is not concerned with ideals; it is concerned with you as you are and as you can become. The difference is great. All teachings are concerned with ideals. They say become like Buddha, become like Jesus, become like this or that. They have ideals, and you have to become like those ideals. Tantra has no ideal for you. Your unknown ideal is hidden within you; it cannot be given to you. You are not to become Buddha, there is no need. One Buddha is enough, and no repetition is of any value. Existence is always unique, it never repeats; repetition is boredom. Existence is always new, eternally new, so even a master is not repeated – such a beautiful phenomenon left unrepeated.
Why? Because even if a master is repeated it will create boredom. What is the use? Only the unique is meaningful; copies are not meaningful. Only if you are firsthand is your destiny fulfilled. If you are secondhand, you have missed.
So Tantra never says be like this or that; there is no ideal. Tantra never talks about ideals; hence, the name “tantra.” Tantra talks about techniques – never about ideals. It talks of how you can become; it never says what. It exists because of that how. Tantra means technique; the very word tantra means technique. It is concerned with “how” you can become, it is not concerned with what. That “what” will be supplied by your growth. Just use the technique, and by and by your inner potentiality will become actual. The uncharted possibility will become opened, and as it opens you will realize what it is. And no one can say what it is. Unless you become it, no one can predict what you can become.
So Tantra gives you only techniques – never ideals. This is how it is different from all moral teachings. Moral teachings always give ideals. Even if they talk about techniques, those techniques are always for particular ideals. Tantra gives no ideal to you; you are the ideal, and your future is unknown. No ideal from the past can be of any help because nothing can be repeated, and if it is repeated it is meaningless.
Zen monks say to remember and be alert. If you meet Buddha in your meditation, kill him immediately; don’t allow him to stand there. Zen monks are Buddha’s followers, and yet they say kill Buddha immediately if you meet him in your meditation, because the personality, the ideal of Buddha may become so hypnotizing that you may forget yourself, and if you forget yourself you have missed the path. Buddha is not the ideal; you are the ideal, your unknown future. That has to be discovered.
Tantra gives you techniques of discovery. The treasure is within you. So remember this second thing: it is very difficult to believe that you are the ideal – difficult for you to believe because everyone is condemning you. No one accepts you, not even you yourself. You go on condemning yourself. You always think in terms of being like someone else, and that is false, dangerous. If you go on thinking like that you will become a fake and everything will be phony. Do you know from where the word phony comes? It comes from telephone. In the early days of the telephone, the transmission was so false, so unreal, that a real voice and a phony voice were heard from the telephone – a phony voice that was mechanical. The real voice was lost – just in those beginning days. From there comes the word phony. If you are imitating someone else, you will become phony, you will not be real. A mechanical device will be there all around you, and your reality, your real voice, will be lost. So don’t be phony, be real,