Witnessing is the art of transcending the world. Witnessing is the very essence of Zen, of religion itself. But don’t make it a thought – it is not a thought at all. Thoughts have to be witnessed. Even if the thought of witnessing arises, witness that thought. Remember that it is not witnessing, it is only a thought – it has to be witnessed. It is there in front of you. You are not it.
The witness is irreducible to any thought; it always goes on sliding back. You cannot catch hold of it through any thought. It can witness each and every thought, the thought of witnessing included; hence, it can never itself become a thought.
Next time when you are meditating remember it. Don’t start enjoying the thought that “This is a beautiful moment. My mind is silent, my being is still. This is witnessing!” The moment you say it, you have lost it.
The second question:
Please say something more about the man of Zen.
The man of Zen is very ordinary – extraordinarily ordinary. He is so ordinary that there is every possibility if you meet him you will not be able to recognize him. He lives just like you, eats like you, sleeps like you. He is in every way just like you. As far as his outside is concerned, he is not different from you at all.
The difference is certainly there, but that difference is inner. He has an insight, he has a clarity. He has eyes and you are blind. He is awake and you are asleep. You are drunk: drunk with greed, drunk with lust, drunk with anger, ambition, ego.
The man of Zen is simply not drunk; he is in his senses. He walks consciously, he sits consciously: “walking in Zen, sitting in Zen.” He is not in any way special. He is not like other so-called saints. He will not lie down on a bed of thorns or on a bed of nails, he will not stand on his head. He is not stupid, he is not an exhibitionist. He will not walk naked in the streets. He is not mad, he is not neurotic. He lives in the very ordinary way, in the very normal way.
That’s why it is the most difficult thing to recognize the man of Zen. You can recognize a saint who walks on water – naturally, it is so obvious that he is special. But a man of Zen does not walk on water. He does not perform any miracles. He does not play any kind of egoistic games. He is not an ego, he is not even a person. He is just a presence, a nonentity. He is absolute nothingness. Only when one is absolute nothingness is one full of awareness. Whatsoever he does, he does with totality. Only a man who is not drunk can do things totally. Otherwise one remains partial; only a part goes on doing something and at the same time other parts may be going against it, being destructive. You may be creating something with one hand and destroying it with the other.