Now the Vedas have existed for at least five thousand years; they reflect something five thousand years old. Much dust has gathered on the mirror, much interpretation, commentary – that’s what I mean by dust. Now you cannot know exactly what the Vedas say; you know only the commentators, the interpreters, and they are thousands. There is a thick wall of commentaries and it is impossible to just put it aside. You will know only about truth, and not only that: you will know commentaries and interpretations of people who have not experienced at all.
Knowledge is imparted for other purposes. Yes, there is a possibility of imparting knowledge about the world because the world is outside you, it is objective. Science is knowledge; science, the very word, means exactly knowledge. But religion is not knowledge.
Religion is experience – for the simple reason that its whole concern is your interiority, your subjectivity, which is available only to you and to nobody else. You cannot invite even your beloved into your inner being. There you are utterly alone – and there resides the truth.
Knowledge will go on enhancing, decorating, enriching your memory, but not your being. Your being is a totally different phenomenon. In fact, knowledge will create barriers. One has to unlearn all that one has learned – only then does one reach the being. One has to be innocent Not knowing is the most intimate. Knowing creates distance.
You ask me: “Why isn’t knowledge of the scriptures helpful in finding the truth?” For the simple reason that if you accumulate knowledge you will be starting to believe in conclusions. You will already conclude what truth is without knowing it, and your conclusion will become the greatest hindrance. Truth has to be approached in utter nudity, in utter purity, in silence, in a state of innocence, child-like wonder and awe; not knowing already, not full of the rubbish called knowledge, not full of the Vedas and the Bibles and the Korans, but utterly silent…without any thought, without any conclusion, without knowing anything about truth. When you approach in this way, suddenly truth is revealed. And truth is revealed here and now: “Ah, This!” A great rejoicing starts happening inside you.
Truth is not separate from you; it is your innermost core. So you need not to learn it from somebody else. Then what’s the function of the masters?
The function of the masters is to help you drop your knowledge, to help you unlearn, to help you towards a state of unconditioning. Your knowledge means you will be always looking through a curtain and that curtain will distort everything. And knowledge is dead. Consciousness is needed, knowing is needed, a state of seeing is needed, but not knowledge. How can you know the alive through the dead?
A man stepped into a very crowded bus. After a while he took out his glass eye, threw it up in the air, then put it back in again. Ten minutes later he again took out his glass eye, threw it up in the air, then put it back in again.
The lady next to him was horrified. “What are you doing?” she cried.
“I am just trying to see if there is any room up front.”