Maybe you are a painter, but you are functioning in the society as a doctor. You will remain unfulfilled your whole life, because you listened to your parents and the society and the greed and ambition. Everybody was saying, “Be a doctor. It is a good profession, respectable, and you will be able to earn more money than if you become a painter.” Who knows? – a painter may not be able to earn money at all, because painting is not something which has any utilitarian purpose. And by being a painter you may remain a beggar. You may never become famous, because painters never become famous – only once in a while.
If you are a musician, a poet, you cannot fulfill the ambitions of your parents, of your society, of all the well-wishers. But one thing is certain: you will be tremendously happy whether you are known or unknown, whether you are poor or rich. You will have a tremendous contentment because you are fulfilling something very fundamental at the deepest core of your being. Unless you start moving in the direction of your essential you remain miserable.
Bliss is a consequence, a by-product. Whenever the river starts moving towards the ocean there is bliss. And one never knows what is hidden in you. No astrologer can help you, no palmist can help you. Except with deep meditation you will never be able to feel what is possible for you.
As I see it, almost everybody is in the wrong place. The person who would have been a tremendously happy doctor is a painter and the person who would have been a tremendously happy painter is a doctor. Nobody seems to be in his right place, that’s why this whole society is in such a mess. The person is directed by others, he is not directed by his own intuition.
Meditation helps you to grow your own intuitive faculty. It becomes very clear what is going to fulfill you, what is going to help you flower. And whatsoever it is – and it is going to be different for each individual…. That is the meaning of the word individual: everybody is unique. And to seek and search your uniqueness is a great thrill, a great adventure.
Your question is significant in many more ways too, because it is not only a question of finding the essential in the individual. In life also we are burdened with the unessential, in religion too, in every dimension.
The religious person goes on doing certain rituals which are taught by others to him. He never finds his own religiousness, a quality which cannot be imposed on you, a quality which can only be helped to grow in you. It is not like a plastic flower that can be given to you from the outside, by the priest. It is a real roseflower, and for that you have to be very alert, very aware.
The Christian goes to the church every Sunday. It is a formality, it does not make him religious but it gives him a false sense of religiousness. The Hindu goes on chanting the Gita. It does not make him religious at all, on the contrary it prevents, because by reciting the Gita he becomes very knowledgeable. He becomes a parrot or a computer. He can recite the whole Gita, but he understands nothing because he has not experienced anything. He knows words; he has not encountered the meaning of those words. People go on being imitative.