Man exists as if in sleep. Man is asleep. Whatever is known as waking is also a sleep. Initiation means to be in intimate contact with one who is awakened. Unless you are in intimate contact with one who is awakened it is impossible to come out of your sleep, because the mind is even capable of dreaming that it is awake. The mind can dream that now there is no more sleep.
When I say that man is asleep, this has to be understood. We are dreaming continually, twenty-four hours a day. In the night we are closed to the outward world, dreaming inside. In the day our senses are opened toward the outside world, but the dream continues inside. Close your eyes for a moment, and you can again be in a dream; it is a continuity inside. You are aware of the outside world, but that awareness is not without the dreaming mind; it is imposed on the dreaming mind, but inside the dream continues. That is why we are not seeing what is real even when we are supposedly awake. We impose our dreams on reality. We never see what is; we always see our projections.
If I look at you and there is a dream in me, you will become an object of projection. I will project my dream on you, and whatever I understand about you will be mixed with my dream, with my projection. When I love you, you appear to me something quite different; when I do not love you, you appear to me completely different. You are not the same because I have just used you as a screen and projected my dreaming mind on you.
When I love you, the dream is different, so you appear different. When I do not love you, you are the same – the screen is the same, but the projection is different; now I am using you as a screen for another dream of mine. Again the dream can change. Again I can love you; then you will appear different to me. We never see what is; we are always seeing our own dream projected on what is.
I am not the same to each one of you: each one projects onto me something else. I am one only as far as I myself am concerned. And if I myself am dreaming, then even for me I am different each moment, because for each moment my interpretation will differ. But if I am awakened, then I am the same. Buddha said that the test of an enlightened one is that he is always the same, just like the sea water: anywhere, everywhere, it is salty.
You have around yourself a filmy enclosure of projections, ideas, notions, conceptions, interpretations. You are a projector going on and on, projecting things that are nowhere, only inside you, and the whole becomes a screen; so you can never be aware, by yourself, that you are in a deep sleep.