But this question arises; it has a relevance with your mind. This is how human mind functions: it always asks, “Does the other love me?” The woman, the wife, asks, “Does the husband love me?” The husband goes on asking, “Does the wife, the woman, love me?” The children go on thinking, “Does the mother, the father, love me?” and the parents go on thinking whether the children love them. You always ask about the other. You are asking a wrong question. You are moving in a wrong direction. You will come across a wall; you will not find a door. You will feel hurt because you will clash against the wall. The very beginning is wrong. You should always ask, “Do I love the wife?” “Do I love the husband?” “Do I love the children?” “Do I love my father and my mother?” But always start from yourself – do you love.
And this is the mystery: if you love, suddenly you know everybody loves you. If you love the wife, she loves you; if you love the husband, he loves you; if you love the children, they love you. A person who loves from his heart is being responded to from everywhere. Love can never be fruitless. It blooms.
But you should start rightly, on the right track; otherwise everybody is asking, “Does the other love me?” and the other is also asking the same question. Then nobody loves, then love becomes just a fantasy, then love disappears from the earth – as it has happened. It has disappeared; it exists only in the poetries of poets – fantasies, imagination, dreams. Reality is absolutely devoid of love now, because you have started with a wrong question.
Drop that question like a disease. Drop it and escape from it, and always ask, “Do I love?” and that will become the key. With that key you can open any heart, and with that key, by and by, you will become so artful that you can open the very existence with that key; then it becomes prayer. Just ask the question, “Does the universe pray to you?” Then it will look foolish; then it will look just absurd. “Does the universe pray to you?” – you will not even ask that; but prayer is nothing but the highest blossoming of love.
You pray to the universe and then you find from everywhere rivulets of love flowing towards you. You become fulfilled. The universe has much to give to you, but for that you have to be open. And the opening is possible only if you love: then you become open, otherwise you remain closed. And even the universe is helpless against your closedness.
The fourth question:
Is it possible to climb on to higher stages while one is suppressing or excluding parts of his being by outside conditions and illusions?
No, it is impossible. You are asking me, “Is it possible to go up the ladder only in part?” Some part of you is left down, some part of you is left somewhere on the ladder, and only a part of you reaches to the very end – how is it possible? You are a unity. You are an organic unity; you cannot be divided. That is the meaning of the word individual: that which cannot be divided. You are an individual. You have to go to the divine door in your totality, in toto; nothing can be left.