So maybe Gurdjieff worked in his own way – it may have been spontaneous to him – people are different and unique; or, he was working in conditions which were very strange. He was working with western minds, in a western climate, and he was the first to bring eastern methods to them. It was difficult: it has to be translated to their understanding.
Zen masters hit their students – beat, throw them out of their houses and windows, jump on them sometimes. But one thing you should remember: they are not angry; that too is part of their compassion. They are not angry at all…because if they are angry then the whole point is lost. Then how can you transform the other? – you are also in the same boat. Then you have come down. No, that will not be helpful.
That too is compassion, but it is possible only in Japan. In no other country is it possible, because a certain tradition is needed. For almost one thousand years this has been a tradition. So when a Zen master jumps and beats his disciple, the disciple understands the language.
If I beat you, you will not understand it. You will be simply angry and you will go away and report to the police! And that is not going to help anybody. You won’t understand it.
In Japan it is understood: when a Zen master beats the disciple, he accepts it in deep gratitude. In fact, you may be surprised that once a Zen master beats his disciple, that disciple becomes the chief disciple. He has attained to something, that’s why the master was so loving and compassionate towards him, that’s why the master blessed him with a beating.
Zen disciples deep down hanker for the day to come when the master will beat them. They wait, they pray for it, they compete with each other. But that is possible only because a long tradition exists. A strange tradition, but when it goes deep-rooted into the unconscious of a country, race, it functions. But that’s not my way.
I know that there is no other medicine than love. Other medicines cannot be so deep-reaching. If love fails, then nothing can succeed.
So I know that you deserve…please don’t deserve it!
The third question:
Even while repeating your jokes to others, we ourselves burst into loud laughter. But you tell us the funniest of stories, and while the audience roars, not even a faint smile crosses your face. What is the secret?
The secret is simple: I know how to tell a joke…and you don’t know!
The fourth question: