The cobra is the best as far as poison is concerned. And these siddhas, as they are called, have come to a point where drinking poison from the outside, ordinary poison, is just meaningless. They make the cobra bite on their tongue, and the cobra turns upside down and pours all its poison in their mouth. And you will be surprised that the cobra dies because that man is so full of poison! The cobra has only very little poison in a small bag attached in his mouth. That’s why the Chinese eat snakes just as a vegetable – just cut the head away and it is all vegetable!
There is a famous story about a master who was sitting with his disciples and a guest master, and as the cobra is a very delicious dish, cobra was prepared. But the master was suddenly shocked, seeing on the guest master’s plate, the head of the cobra. So he took away the plate, called the cook who was also a monk and proved to be not only a monk, but a master….
The master was very angry, but before he could show his anger the cook said, “What is the matter?”
The master said, “Look what the matter is. You have even cooked the head of the cobra!”
The cook said, “Don’t be worried.” He took the head and gulped it down in front of everybody else. And he said, “Now you can eat. Don’t be worried; I have taken care of the head.” There was utter silence and shock, but perhaps he was connected with a certain secret school of siddhas in China too, so there was no danger – he did not die.
These experiments are certainly outrageous, but they have proved that a man is capable of becoming so conscious that there is nothing that can make him unconscious again. He has achieved the ultimate in consciousness. That’s the meaning of Gurdjieff’s experiment. Don’t call it an accident.
I am energy that becomes thoughts and emotions. I am the expression of those thoughts and emotions. I am the witness of those thoughts and emotions. Which of this holy trinity is the closest to the unique being that is me?
The last category, energy as awareness, is the closest to the very center of existence. Then thinking goes a little far away, then expression goes a little more far away. In turning back from expression to thinking, and from thinking to non-thinking and just pure awareness, you are closest to yourself and to existence itself.
In emotions, in thoughts, in expressions, it is the same energy, but it is moving toward the periphery, the circumference, not toward the center. The closer you are to the circumference, the more you are away from yourself.
Drop backwards step by step. It is a journey to the source, and the source is all that you need to experience…because it is not only your source, it is the source of the stars and the moon and the sun. It is the source of all.