It happened: I used to know a man. He married thrice, and he suffered much. The first time he married he chose a woman who was a sadist, who enjoyed torturing him. He would come to see me and he would relate his misery. Sometimes the woman would beat him, and he would show me the marks. But I had the feeling that somehow, deep down, he relished it, he enjoyed it, because whenever he would be talking about his miseries his face would become radiant, not sad; his eyes would sparkle, he would become more alive.
I continued to watch him minutely. Sometimes his wife would go to her parents’ home; then he was never happy. When the wife was with him he was unhappy: when the wife was not with him he was unhappy – but both unhappinesses have a distinction and difference. When the wife was there he was unhappy, but happy in his unhappiness; he enjoyed it, talked about it. And I had the feeling he was exaggerating; he was very poetic about it.
Then the misery became too much and the man divorced the wife. The day he divorced I told him, “Now be very alert – because I think you will fall in love with the same type of woman again. Because you remain the same, you will again find the same type of woman. So now be alert.”
He said, “Never again can I marry such a woman. I am finished for ever!”
But within three months he again became a victim of the same type of woman and he got married, and again he started his sad stories that the woman was torturing him. I told him, “I told you that this was possible, because who will choose the woman? – you will choose the woman. You chose the first, you will choose the second; and you remain the same. And,” I told him, “you will always choose a sadistic woman, because you are a masochist. You want to be tortured – somebody to dominate you, somebody to crush you. You are a self condemner, you don’t approve of yourself and you don’t love yourself. You need somebody to hate you and to kick you around.”
The second marriage also finished soon. The wife left. The last time when I saw him he was again after a woman, and I told him, “Now be alert! Something within you will again choose the same type of woman.”
He said, “Now no more. What do you think I am? – am I so stupid? I cannot forget the lesson.”
And again he is married, and I have received a letter from him – again the same old tale of miseries.
This man can go on living for thousands of years, and this man can move all over the earth – he will always choose the same type of woman, because the chooser remains the same. The misery is not in the woman he chooses; the misery is in the very choice.
You carry your heaven within you.
You carry your hell.
And if you feel miserable don’t try to find excuses in the outside world, they won’t help. In fact, they will become the deceptions. Whenever you are in misery, try to find something within you which frustrates. Be mindful of that. Otherwise, for many lives persons go on moving in the same rut, the same vicious circle.