This is the difference between the poet and the mystic: when something happens to the mystic he is perfectly aware that it is from the beyond, it is not from him. He is immensely glad; he rejoices that he has been chosen as a vehicle, as a medium, but his ego cannot claim it. In fact, you become a mystic only when you have dropped the ego. But the poet is full of the ego – not always but almost always. Once in a while, when he forgets his ego, he touches the same world that is the mystic’s world; but the mystic lives there. The poet once in a while gets a glimpse of it, and because his ego is not dead, he immediately claims it as his creation. But all the ancient seers were aware of it.
The Vedas, the Bible, the Koran, the three greatest scriptures of the world, are known not to have been written by anyone. The Vedas are known as apaurusheya – not written by any person. Certainly somebody wrote them, but they are from existence, from the beyond, from some unknown source. The mystic becomes possessed by it, he dances to its tune. He is no more himself – he is it. The poet once in a while gets a glimpse of it, a faraway glimpse.
In Sanskrit we have two words for the poet; in no other language is it so, because no other part of the world became alert, very alert about this fact. In Sanskrit one word is kavi. Kavi exactly means the poet. The other word is rishi; rishi means a mystic poet. The difference is great. The poet has a deep aesthetic sense, he is very sensitive, he can penetrate into the very core of things. He has a way of knowing which is not that of the scientist. He does not analyze, he loves; his love is great, but his ego is alive. So when he looks at a roseflower he comes closer than the scientist, because the scientist immediately starts dissecting the flower and to dissect something is to kill it. The very effort of knowing is an effort to kill.
Hence whatsoever science knows is about dead things. Now even scientists are becoming aware of the fact. When blood is taken out of your body and is examined, analyzed, it is no more the same blood that it was when it was circulating in your body. Then it was alive, then it was an organic part of your life. Now it is not the same. It is like your hand, or your eye; when it is part of the organic unity of your body it can see but take the eye out and it is dead, it cannot see. It is no more alive, it is something else, it is a corpse.
The greatest scientists are becoming aware of the fact that whatsoever we have known up to now is basically, fundamentally wrong. We know about dead things only – the alive things we miss. That is why science cannot say there is something in you which is beyond the body, more than the body. Science cannot say that you are more than the sum total of your parts, and unless you are something more than the sum total of your parts you are not. Then you are only a machine – maybe very sophisticated but that does not matter. You are a computer, you don’t have a soul; you are just a by-product, an epiphenomenon. You don’t have any awareness, you are only behavior.
Science reduces man to a machine, not only to an animal – remember. Those days are gone when science used to think, like Charles Darwin and others, that man is nothing but another animal. Now Skinner, Delgado, Pavlov, don’t say that, that man is another animal – because there is no anima, no life, no consciousness – they say man is another machine.