But trouble started from the very second night. And the trouble was very strange. Somebody’s bangles would end up on someone else’s hand, somebody’s ring had would end up on someone else’s finger, somebody’s items of the bedding would end up on someone else’s bed. People were very puzzled when they woke up in the morning to see this strange phenomenon. The things would all be found – nothing was lost or stolen – but half the day would be wasted in just sorting out everybody’s missing items. Someone would be saying, “Where are my spectacles?” Someone would be unable to find his money purse and would be searching for it. Until all the belongings of fifty or sixty people had been looked for: this money can’t be found, these glasses can’t be found…
Finally, after two nights, Eknath had to keep a vigil during the whole night. He had suspected the hand of the thief in all of this, and so it was. As everyone fell asleep, the thief would get up and start mixing up people’s items.
Eknath said, “Foolish man! You had sworn not to steal.”
The man said, “I had sworn not to steal, and that, I am not doing! But I had never sworn not to mix up people’s things. Your pilgrimage will come to an end in three months, but this is my lifelong habit. And when everybody goes to sleep, that is when the day begins for me. What am I supposed to do then, for all those long night hours? And I am not destroying anything of anybody’s; I have not taken a single paise from anybody.”
Habit! One is not to steal, but mixing things around – at least one derives some joy. The next morning he would be the only man who was sitting and joyously watching the whole scene that was going on around.
I have heard about such thieves who would steal from one of their own pockets and put the thing into another. This at least gives a little solace to their minds. They have saved face. It is a question of their prestige.
In these twenty-five centuries, so much perverted thought, so much suppression, so many clouds have covered man’s mind that now it is very difficult to do Vipassana directly. And you are asking, “When does catharsis take place in Vipassana?” There is just no place for catharsis in Vipassana, because there was no need for catharsis in the days when Vipassana was invented. If there is simply no cancer, then what is the need for a treatment for it?
That’s why I insist that my sannyasins do Dynamic Meditation before trying Vipassana, so that they can throw out all the rubbish during Dynamic Meditation, so that they become small children once again before starting Vipassana. But if you start Vipassana directly, you will create a dangerous situation: that which is suppressed within you will remain suppressed. Superficially you will appear peaceful but inside all that restlessness will go on accumulating. And that restlessness can one day burst forth like an explosion – it will. There is a limit to what you can keep suppressed.
I am not in favor of starting Vipassana directly; now Vipassana is the second step. Two thousand years ago it was the first step. Now, the first step is Dynamic Meditation. Dynamic Meditation will prepare you for Vipassana. Dynamic Meditation is not enough, you will not attain to enlightenment through it, but it will wash you clean as if you have just come out of the Ganges after taking a bath. To enter Vipassana in those moments of cleanliness is right; otherwise there is a danger.