A maddened Roman swordsman came into the village cutting down men, women, and children, and terrifying everyone. Arriving at the doors of a Zen monastery, he smashed down the door with the hilt of his sword. Striding up to the master who was sitting in zazen, he raised his sword and was just about to kill him, when something of the master’s stillness reached him.
And angrily he shouted, “Don’t you realize that standing in front of you is a man who can cut you in two without the blink of an eye!”
The master quietly said, “Don’t you realize that sitting in front of you is a man who can be cut in two without the blink of an eye? So go ahead. Don’t be distracted by my silence; do whatsoever you have decided to do.” But the silence had reached the madman, the silence of the master had touched his heart; now it was impossible.
So just be open.
Even if you are a madman, and open, you will recognize enlightenment wherever it is, in whatsoever form it has taken. And even if you are a great philosopher, intellectual, very rational to the core, if you don’t allow yourself to imbibe the spirit of silence and bliss, you will miss. You have to be very, very open. You have to be in a let-go – and then the evidence comes so strongly. It is so certain that you can deny everything, but you cannot deny a man of enlightenment – it is impossible. You may not be able to prove it to others – because there is no way to prove it – but for you, the thing is settled.
And once it is settled for you, once you have been in contact with an enlightened man, a bridge has been created. Now you can never be the same again. The very phenomenon that you could recognize a man of enlightenment is enough to start the foundation of your own enlightenment. It is enough to give you a new direction, a new being, a new birth.
The fourth question:
Anything I see happening in myself is false, illusory, and a mind trip, right? Is my recognition of the mind trip a mind trip too?
As far as thoughts go, everything is a mind trip. When thoughts cease and you see without any thoughts crowding in your mind, when you see clearly with no smoke of the thoughts surrounding you, when your look is simple, innocent, uncorrupted by thoughts, then it is not a mind trip. Only meditation is not a mind trip; everything else is a mind trip. Or, love is not a mind trip; everything else is a mind trip.