The word room is very meaningful. It simply means space. People have completely forgotten the root meaning of the word ‘room’. When you take out all the furniture from your room, all the bookshelves, everything out, you say, “Now the room looks roomier.” All those things were obstructing the room. They were filling the space. If you say, “I saw there was no room” you were there, and your very presence needs a certain space. That is your room. There may not be walls to your room. Even if you make the whole sky your room – it does not matter how big the room is; if you are there, you will be surrounded by space. Without space you cannot be there. And that space is the real room.
I used to stay in a very rich man’s house. He was so rich that he used to collect all kinds of junk, and in the guest house where I used to stay, he had put everything you can possibly conceive. When he took me for the first time to the guest house he said, “This is going to be your room.”
I looked inside and I said, “But where is the room?” A big, beautiful piano, radios, very costly furniture, many paintings and even though television had not come to that city at that time, he had a beautiful television set. Some day, television will come. I said, “I can see so many things, they have destroyed the room completely! If you want me to stay in this place, I refuse. You take all this junk so that I can have some room.”
He could not understand me. He said, “What do you mean by room?”
I mean that “room” simply means spaciousness. The room can be bigger, can be smaller, but if you are there, your very presence creates a room around you. As far as you can see – that is the wall of your room. They will both disappear together. But then there will be no one to say, “The room has disappeared. I have also disappeared.” You cannot say that “I have also disappeared.” There will be nobody to say anything.
No room, no you, no observer, no observed.
Just a pure silence without any ripples.
A famous Sufi story about Mulla Nasruddin…He was always bragging in the town’s cafeteria that he is a very generous man, very compassionate. People were getting tired of it. They said, “We have listened to this so many times, but we have never seen a single act of compassion, generosity, friendliness. Prove it!”
He said, “Okay, you are all invited” – a group of a hundred people from the cafeteria – “to come to my house for dinner today. Just follow me and you will see the act.”
In the heat of discussion he said this, but as he started approaching closer to the house he realized what he had done. In the morning his wife had sent him to fetch some vegetables from the market, and the whole day he had been wandering here and there. He had not come back all day to the house. And he knew perfectly well, as every husband knows, that there is only one kind of husband in the world: they are all henpecked.