You are roots, but only roots; it has not sprouted, the tree has not come to bloom. Buddha is only flowers, and you are only roots – Lao Tzu is both. He may not look as perfect as Buddha, he cannot, because the other is always there – how can he be perfect? But he is complete. He is total. He may not be perfect but he is total. And these two words have to be remembered always: don’t try to be perfect, try to be total. If you try to be perfect you will follow Buddha, you will follow Mahavira, you will follow Jesus. If you try to be total only then can you have the feeling of what it means to be near Lao Tzu, what it means to follow Tao.
Tao is totality. Totality is not perfect, it is always imperfect – because it is always alive. Perfection is always dead – anything that becomes perfect is dead. How can it live? How can it live when it has become perfect? – it has no need to live. It has denied the other part. Life exists through the tension of the opposites, the meeting of the opposites. If you deny the opposite you can become perfect but you will not be total, you will miss something. Howsoever beautiful Buddha is, he misses something. Lao Tzu is not so beautiful, not so perfect.
Buddha and Lao Tzu are both standing before you; Lao Tzu will look ordinary and Buddha extraordinary, superb. But I tell you: thousands of Buddhas exist in Lao Tzu. He is deeply rooted in the earth – he is rooted in the earth, and he is standing high in the sky; he is both, heaven and earth, a meeting of the opposites.
There are three words to be remembered: one is dependence, another is independence, the third is interdependence.
Buddha is independent. You are dependent: a husband dependent on his wife, a father dependent on his son, an individual dependent on society – thousands of dependencies. You are dependent. Buddha stands like a peak – independent. He has cut all the ties with the world: with the wife, with the child, with the father – everything he has cut. He has renounced all – a pillar of independence. You are part. Buddha is part, the other part. You may be ugly – he is beautiful. But his beauty exists only because of your ugliness. If you disappear Buddha will disappear. He looks wise because of your stupidity; if you become wise he will no more be wise.
Lao Tzu is the phenomenon of interdependence – because life is interdependent. You cannot be dependent, you cannot be independent – both are extremes. Just in the middle, where life is a balance, is interdependence. Everything exists with everything else, everything is interconnected. Hurt a flower and you hurt a star. Everything is interconnected, nothing exists like an island. If you try to exist like an island – it is possible, but it will be an unearthly phenomenon, almost a myth, a dream. Lao Tzu believes in interdependence. He says: Take everything as it is, don’t choose.
It seems to be simple and yet the most difficult thing, because the mind always wants to choose. The mind lives through choice. If you don’t choose the mind drops. This is the way of Lao Tzu. How to drop the mind? – don’t choose! That’s why he never prescribes any meditation, because then there is no need for any meditation.