The first question:
In love as well as in meditation the moment of dissolving, disappearing, is so tremendously beautiful. Is it possible for a man who is still not egoless, not enlightened, to encounter death consciously and to welcome and enjoy it the same way? You are everywhere. But after we will have died, shall we find ourselves in such a state that it will be possible for us to remain attuned to you whether you are in the body or not? Would you please talk on death?
It is a significant question, and very urgent too. It is from Ma Ananda Shefali. She is a very, very old woman, and she will be facing death sooner or later. And it is good to prepare, it is good to go ready into death.
The first thing to be understood about death is: if you have known love you have known death, if you have known meditation you have known death. Death does not bring anything new. It is new only for those who have not loved and who have not meditated.
Shefali need not be afraid: she has been deeply in meditation and she has loved intensely. She’s the old woman I was talking about just a few days ago, who has become like a child, whose child is born, who is no longer a camel and no longer a lion, who has become the child. She has forgotten her body; the body does not matter. Only the body ages. The body lives in time, the innermost core is always beyond time; it is never born and never dies. The body is born and the body dies. The mind is constantly being born and constantly going into death, but there is a witness inside you who goes on watching the whole play. That witnessing is your real being. It simply watches. It watches birth, it watches love, it watches meditation, it watches death. The only quality there is, is one of witnessing, pure mirroring. It simply mirrors whatsoever happens.
Shefali need not be afraid. I am absolutely happy with her work on herself. She has been of great courage. To become a child again needs guts – it needs guts because the whole world will be laughing at you. The whole world will think you have gone mad. You will not find support anywhere, you will lose your respectability. People will start avoiding you; that’s what happened to Shefali. When she went back to Holland she wrote to me: “It is strange, friends are avoiding me. People whom I have known my whole life simply try not to come across me. And I have brought such joy to them, and I have brought an open heart.” But who wants an open heart? Who wants joy? People are searching for misery. People hoard misery, people cling to their hell. They avoid anything that can bring joy to them as long as they can. They always find alibis, rationalizations. Bliss is condemned, misery is respected.