Once you have found the center of your consciousness, growth happens of its own accord. It has not to be done, you have not to grow. It is just as when the tree gets nourishment, it starts growing: fresh leaves and flowers and branches suddenly start appearing.
The growth movement was not a growth movement. It started, of course, in California. Any nonsense…if you find it, and you want to trace where it started from, you have to go to California. It started in Esalen.
One of the directors of Esalen came to me, because he had become fed up. No growth was happening – and he was the director, so what about the poor fellows he was directing? He became a sannyasin here in America, and after one year he came to see me.
And this is one of my experiences: these people who become accustomed to leading others, who become accustomed to the attitude that “I know, and you do not; therefore, follow me”….
This director was directing the whole show in Esalen for many years. How many people he destroyed I don’t know, but he must have destroyed a lot. Reading my books…. First his young daughter became my sannyasin, because she was still unpolluted. She became my messenger in Esalen, she turned many Esalen people to sannyas. It was she who insisted that her father come to me, and he came.
To read my books, to listen to my tapes, is one thing. But to come to me and look eye to eye – it is very difficult.
The man’s name was Dick, and he proved a dick! Just within a few days he escaped without telling anybody. We looked for him – where had he gone? From Esalen I received his letter saying, “Yours is too dangerous a place.” He must have been thinking that growth is without risk, growth is just a game, a gimmick. Perhaps you have to read something, do a few stupid groups, and within a few weeks you are grown-up.
Growth is simple on the one hand – the simplest thing – and on the other hand the most difficult thing, almost impossible. The reason why it is so, is: it is simple if you have guts. It is so simple that nothing has to be done, you just have to become a little more ingoing, directed towards your inner reality. Just as you see things with open eyes, you have to close your eyes and see what is there. It is so simple.
It becomes dangerous because you have to lose many things. You have to lose all your past, your knowledgeability, your so-called growth. You have to lose everything that you have accumulated around you. It is all junk! If you cling to it, growth becomes impossible.
That man ran away from me. He still reads my books, he still listens to my tapes, but now I am so close, he has no courage to come back – because there in Esalen he is the director, and here he has to be nobody.