When you wish for something you do not have, that desire will go on troubling you as long as it remains unfulfilled. So when all desires die, why should a person return to the world? But you return because you die unfulfilled. And this happens many times. You are still interested in worldly happiness; there are still desires – and they shout at you, “Where are you going? Come back!” No one sends you back into this world, you come back yourself because of your desires. You return yourself; you travel over the bridge of your own desires. The body is left behind, but you come back with your same mind and start your journey once again. You enter another womb; you repeat the same routine all over again.
The death that becomes the means for another birth is not, in fact, real death. Kabir says it is an incomplete death. It is an immature death, one that is not fully ripe. You have not grown up yet. You have not yet become wise and died a mature death. You have not yet attained wisdom and died a mature death. Wisdom does not necessarily go hand in hand with old age. Hair turns gray in the natural course of things, but there is a great difference between attaining wisdom and having one’s hair turn gray. Wisdom is attained only when one’s desires grow old and crumble, only when one’s desires exist no more.
Animals grow old, trees grow old, and you will also be old one day. And one day you too will die. But the man whose desires grow old, the man who knows what desires are, the man whose desires die, is the man who attains to wisdom. The death of such a man is totally different. Kabir dies, Buddha dies, and you will also die, but there is a qualitative difference between your death and that of Kabir, between your death and that of Buddha.
Try very carefully to grasp each of these sutras. Once you have fathomed their meaning correctly you will be able to understand that qualitative difference.
Dying, dying, all go on dying.
None die a proper death.
Kabir met with death,
Never to die again.
Kabir says everyone in this world dies but that no one dies in a right and proper manner. He says, as all the other enlightened men have also said, that dying is an art.
You may never have thought of death in this way; you do not even consider living an art. You live like a log floating on the river, being dragged wherever the current pulls it. Your life is a tragedy; it has not become an art. Before you take a step you do not even stop to think. If someone asks you, “Why did you do that?” you really have no answer. Although you prepare an answer and give it, inside you know very well it is no answer at all. You live as if you are groping about in the darkness. Your life has not become an art. That is why, up to the end of your life, you do not know what beauty is, what truth is, what bliss is. You do not experience any of these things. You feel as if you have spent your whole life wandering in a desert; you feel as if you have achieved nothing at all in your life.