It is said that whenever Gautam Buddha moved – and he was continuously moving, for eight months of the year except the four months of the rains. He might come to rest under a tree whose leaves had fallen, whose branches were standing naked against the sky – it would be the time of fall. But it is related that, seeing Buddha resting under the tree, it would seem very shameful to the tree that there is no foliage, no shade, no flowers rejoicing and welcoming a man who has reached to the ultimate peaks of consciousness. And in the morning when Gautam Buddha would wake up, all his disciples would see a miracle: the tree which had been absolutely without leaves, without flowers, has suddenly become so green, such beautiful foliage around it and hundreds of flowers. And just the evening before, they had seen it – the miracle has happened in the silences of the night, and the flowers are showering on Gautam Buddha.
This incident is repeated so many times, in so many different sources, that it cannot be simply denied as symbolic, as poetic. As far as I am concerned I take it for granted to be a true and existential experience.
Whenever I have read such things – and there are so many instances – I have always remembered the incident in Jesus Christ’s life, for which Christians cannot give any explanation. They try to hide it. But before you can understand the incident in Jesus’ life I have to give you some relevant information.
Jesus came to India when he was fourteen, and he lived in India for almost fourteen years. Gautam Buddha was still in the air, he had lived just five hundred years before, and he left behind him hundreds of enlightened people. The air was so full of his fragrance that young Jesus must have been tremendously influenced by it. And the route Jesus followed for his traveling proves it: he went to Ladakh, which is where one of the oldest Buddhist monasteries is still functioning, and then to Tibet, which had become more in tune with Gautam Buddha than India itself.
This attraction was pulling him into the very unknown and dangerous spaces of Ladakh, Tibet. The reason was that he wanted to know as much as possible about this strange man, Gautam Buddha, who had transformed the whole atmosphere in the East.
He must have come across these stories that when Buddha passed by, trees blossomed even though it was not the season for them to blossom.
Just one hundred and twenty years ago, one Russian traveler remained in Ladakh for six months, studying the old records. He has reported that those old records remember Jesus as a young man but of immense silence, beauty, and a great search, who had come to the monastery and lived there for three months. They described Jesus exactly: that he was coming from Judea, a faraway country; that it was very difficult for him to understand because of the language barrier, but he tried hard and accumulated as much honey as he could from every possible source which was still available. After Gautam Buddha, although five hundred years had passed, the air was still full of remembrance. The mountains had not forgotten. And there were hundreds of people who could have been called contemporaries of Gautam Buddha as far as their consciousness was concerned.
I am telling you these facts because now Christian missionaries have removed all those records from Ladakh. There were records in Tibet which were destroyed by Christians in the time of the British empire. They tried to remove any possible evidence that Jesus had been in the East learning the art of inward-going. But in spite of all their efforts, there are intrinsic proofs. And now I come to the story in Jesus’ life: