In India, the harijans and the women are the two most oppressed, insulted, humiliated beings. If they get together, this country will belong to them. Let these Shankaracharyas and these Nehrus be forgotten. It is a simple fact that freedom has not come to the country. Britain has gone but slavery is still here. What kind of spirituality is it, which does not allow human beings to enter temples?
I accept the Shankaracharya’s challenge, but because he is giving the challenge, he will have to accept my conditions. He has to come here, because I don’t go anywhere. And because this gathering is international, he will have to talk in English. No rotten Sanskrit will do.
It will be perfectly humorous – we will all enjoy it – but that old goat has to come here: that is the first condition. Second, the language in which the conversation is to happen will be international: the English language. Thirdly, entering the gate, he and his company have to bring negative AIDS certificates. Without negative certificates, they cannot enter this campus. This is the only campus in the world which is AIDS-free.
If he is willing to fulfill these conditions he is welcome. We will really enjoy.
Now, Maneesha’s Zen anecdote:
Seppo first visited Enkan, then Tosu three times, and Tozan nine times, without result.
…Because Seppo was a great scholar, and all those people were men of reality, not men of knowledge. So, although he could feel there was something, he could not come to a conclusion about what it was. There was something – otherwise, why should he go first to Enkan, then to Tosu three times and Tozan nine times, but without coming to a conclusion about what it was?
The reason was he was trying to approach reality through the mind. Mind can only weave philosophies, theorizations, but it cannot know. It is blind as far as your own being is concerned. And that is, emphatically, the only religious experience: where your logic and your reason and your mind no longer function; when you are simply a pure space, unclouded.
When at last he visited Tokusan, Seppo asked him, “Is it possible for me to share with the patriarchs,” the buddhas, “in the supreme teaching?”
Tokusan struck him with his staff, saying, “What on earth are you talking about?”
Intellectually, what he is asking is perfectly valid. Existentially, it is absolutely wrong. You have to remember this distinction.
He had asked, “Is it possible for me to share the experience of a buddha?” Nobody can experience it through the mind. And without the mind, there is no need to share because you are the buddha. That’s why Tokusan struck him with his staff, saying,