FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Please say something about the relationship of consciousness and
Modern physics has discovered one of the greatest things ever discovered, and that is: matter is energy. That is the greatest contribution of Albert Einstein to humanity: e is equal to mc squared, matter is energy. Matter only appears... otherwise there is no such thing as matter, nothing is solid. Even the solid rock is a pulsating energy, even the solid rock is as much energy as the roaring ocean. The waves that are arising in the solid rock cannot be seen because they are very subtle, but the rock is waving, pulsating, breathing; it is alive.
Friedrich Nietzsche has declared that God is dead. God is not dead -- on the contrary, what has happened is that matter is dead. Matter has been found not to exist at all. This insight into matter brings modern physics very close to mysticism, very close. For the first time the scientist and the mystic are coming very close, almost holding hands.
Eddington, one of the greatest scientists of this age, has said, "We used to think that matter is a thing; now it is no more so. Matter is more like a thought than like a thing."
Existence is energy. Science has discovered that the observed is energy, the object is energy. Down the ages, at least for five thousand years, it has been known that the other polarity -- the subject, the observer, consciousness -- is energy.
Your body is energy, your mind is energy, your soul is energy. Then what is the difference between these three? The difference is only of a different rhythm, different wavelengths, that's all. The body is gross -- energy functioning in a gross way, in a visible way.
Mind is a little more subtle, but still not too subtle, because you can close your eyes and you can see the thoughts moving; they can be seen. They are not as visible as your body; your body is visible to everybody else, it is publicly visible. Your thoughts are privately visible. Nobody else can see your thoughts; only you can see them -- or people who have worked very deeply into seeing thoughts. But ordinarily they are not visible to others.
And the third, the ultimate layer inside you, is that of consciousness. It is not even visible to you. It cannot be reduced into an object, it remains subject.
If all these three energies function in harmony, you are healthy and whole. If these energies don't function in harmony and accord you are ill, unhealthy; you are no more whole. And to be whole is to be holy.
The effort that we are making here is how to help you so that your body, your mind, your consciousness, can all dance in one rhythm, in a togetherness, in a deep harmony -- not in conflict at all, but in cooperation. The moment your body, mind and consciousness function together, you have become the trinity, and in that experience is God.
Your question is significant. You ask, "Please say something about the relationship of consciousness and energy."
There is no relationship of consciousness and energy.
Consciousness is energy, purest energy; mind is not so pure, body is still less pure. Body is much too mixed, and mind is also not totally pure.
Consciousness is total pure energy. But you can know this consciousness only if you make a cosmos out of the three, and not a chaos. People are living in chaos: their bodies say one thing, their bodies want to go in one direction; their minds are completely oblivious of the body -- because for centuries you have been taught that you are not the body, for centuries you have been told that the body is your enemy, that you have to fight with it, that you have to destroy it, that the body is sin.
Because of all these ideas -- silly and stupid they are, harmful and poisonous they are, but they have been taught for so long that they have become part of your collective mind, they are there -- you don't experience your body in a rhythmic dance with yourself.
Hence my insistence on dancing and music, because it is only in dance that you will feel that your body, your mind and you are functioning together. And the joy is infinite when all these function together; the richness is great.
Consciousness is the highest form of energy. And when all these three energies function together, the fourth arrives. The fourth is always present when these three function together. When these three function in an organic unity, the fourth is always there; the fourth is nothing but that organic unity. In the East, we have called that fourth simply "the fourth" -- turiya; we have not given it any name. The three have names, the fourth is nameless. To know the fourth is to know God. Let us say it in this way: God is when you are an organic orgasmic unity. God is not when you are a chaos, a disunity, a conflict. When you are a house divided against yourself there is no God.
When you are tremendously happy with yourself, happy as you are, blissful as you are, grateful as you are, and all your energies are dancing together, when you are an orchestra of all your energies, God is. That feeling of total unity is what God is. God is not a person somewhere, God is the experience of the three falling in such unity that the fourth arises. And the fourth is more than the sum total of the parts. If you dissect a painting, you will find the canvas and the colors, but the painting is not simply the sum total of the canvas and the colors; it is something more. That "something more" is expressed through the painting, color, canvas, the artist, but that "something more" is the beauty. Dissect the rose flower, and you will find all the chemicals and things it is constituted of, but the beauty will disappear. It was not just the sum total of the parts, it was more.
The whole is more than the sum total of the parts; it expresses through the parts, but it is more. To understand that it is more is to understand God. God is that more, that plus. It is not a question of theology, it cannot be decided by logical argumentation. You have to feel beauty, you have to feel music, you have to feel dance. And ultimately you have to feel the dance in your body, mind, soul. You have to learn how to play on these three energies so that they all become an orchestra. Then God is -- not that you see God, there is nothing to be seen; God is the ultimate seer, it is witnessing. Learn to melt your body, mind, soul; find out ways when you can function as a unity.
It happens many times that runners....
You will not think of running as a meditation, but runners sometimes have felt a tremendous experience of meditation. They were surprised, because they were not looking for it -- who thinks that a runner is going to experience God? -- but it has happened, and now running is becoming more and more a new kind of meditation.
It can happen in running. If you have ever been a runner, if you have enjoyed running in the early morning when the air is fresh and young and the whole world is coming back out of sleep, awakening, and you were running and your body was functioning beautifully, and the fresh air, and the new world again born out of the darkness of the night, and everything singing all around, and you were feeling so alive.... A moment comes when the runner disappears, there is only running. The body, mind and soul start functioning together; suddenly an inner orgasm is released.
Runners have sometimes come accidentally on the experience of the fourth, turiya, although they will miss it because they will think it was just because of running that they enjoyed the moment; that it was a beautiful day, that the body was healthy and the world was beautiful, and it was just a certain mood. They will not take note of it. But if they take note of it, my own observation is that a runner can more easily come close to meditation than anybody else. Jogging can be of immense help, swimming can be of immense help. All these things have to be transformed into meditations.
Drop old ideas of meditations, that just sitting underneath a tree with a yoga posture is meditation. That is only one of the ways, and may be suitable for a few people but is not suitable for all.
For a small child it is not meditation, it is torture. For a young man who is alive, vibrant, it is repression, it is not meditation.
Maybe for an old man who has lived, whose energies are declining, it may be meditation. People differ, there are many types of people. To someone who has a low kind of energy, sitting underneath a tree in a yoga posture may be the best meditation, because the yoga posture is the least energy-expensive -- the least. When the spine is erect, making a ninety-degree angle with the earth, your body expends the least energy possible. If you are leaning towards the left or towards the front, then your body starts spending more energy, because the gravitation starts pulling you downwards and you have to keep yourself, you have to hold yourself so that you don't fall. This is expenditure. An erect spine was found to need the least spending of energy.
Then sitting with your hands together in the lap is also very very useful for low-energy people, because when both the hands are touching each other, your body electricity starts moving in a circle. It does not go out of your body; it becomes an inner circle, the energy moves inside you.
You must know that energy is always released through the fingers, energy is never released from round-shaped things. For example, your head cannot release energy, it contains it. Energy is released through the fingers, the toes of the feet and the hands. In a certain yoga posture the feet are together, so one foot releases energy and it enters into the other foot; one hand releases energy and it enters into the other hand. You go on taking your own energy, you become an inner circle of energy. It is very resting, it is very relaxing.
The yoga posture is the most relaxed posture possible. It is more relaxing than even sleep, because when you are asleep your whole body is being pulled by gravitation. When you are horizontal it is relaxing in a totally different way. It is relaxing because it brings you back to the ancient days when man was an animal, horizontal. It is relaxing because it is regressive; it helps you to become an animal again.
That's why in a lying posture you cannot think clearly, it becomes difficult to think. Try it. You can dream easily but you cannot think easily; for thinking you have to sit. The more erect you sit, the better is the possibility to think. Thinking is a late arrival; when man became vertical, thinking arrived. When man used to be horizontal, dreaming was there but thinking was not there. So when you lie down you start dreaming, thinking disappears. It is a kind of relaxation, because thinking stops; you regress. The yoga posture is a good meditation for those who have low energy, for those who are ill, for those who are old, for those who have lived the whole life and now are coming closer and closer to death. Thousands of Buddhist monks have died in the sitting lotus posture, because the best way to receive death is in the lotus posture -- because in the lotus posture you will be fully alert, and because energies will be disappearing, they will be becoming less and less every moment. Death is coming. In a lotus posture you can keep alertness to the very end. And to be alert while you are dying is one of the greatest experiences, the ultimate in orgasm.
And if you are awake while you are dying you will have a totally different kind of birth: you will be born awake. One who dies awake is born awake. One who dies unconscious is born unconscious. One who dies with awareness can choose the right womb for himself; he has a choice, he has earned it. The man who dies unconsciously has no right to choose the womb; the womb happens unconsciously, accidentally.
The man who dies perfectly alert in this life will be coming only once more, because next time there will be no need to come. Just a little work is left: the other life will do that work. For one who is dying with awareness, only one thing is left now: he has had no time to radiate his awareness into compassion. Next time he can radiate his awareness into compassion. And unless awareness becomes compassion, something remains incomplete, something remains imperfect.
Running can be a meditation.
Jogging, dancing, swimming, anything can be a meditation. My definition of meditation is: whenever your body, mind, soul are functioning together in rhythm it is meditation, because it will bring the fourth in. And if you are alert that you are doing it as a meditation -- not to take part in the Olympics, but doing it as a meditation -- then it is tremendously beautiful.
In the new commune we are going to introduce all kinds of meditations. Those who enjoy swimming, they will have opportunities to go for a swimming meditation. Those who enjoy running, they will have their group to run for miles. Each according to his need -- only then this world can be full of meditation; otherwise not.
If we give only a fixed pattern of meditation, then it will be applicable only to a few people. That has been one of the problems in the past: fixed patterns of meditation, not fluid -- fixed, so they fit certain types and all others are left in the darkness.
My effort is to make meditation available to each and everybody.
Whosoever wants to meditate, meditation should be made available according to his type. If he needs rest, then rest should be his meditation. Then "sitting silently doing nothing, and the spring comes and the grass grows by itself" -- that will be his meditation. We have to find as many dimensions to meditation as there are people in the world. And the pattern has not to be very rigid, because no two individuals are alike. The pattern has to be very liquid so that it can fit with the individual. In the past, the practice was that the individual had to fit with the pattern.
I bring a revolution. The individual has not to fit with the pattern, the pattern has to fit with the individual. My respect for the individual is absolute. I am not much concerned with means; means can be changed, arranged in different ways.
That's why you find so many meditations going on here. We don't have enough opportunities here, otherwise you would be surprised how many doors God's temple has. And you would be surprised also that there is a special door only for you and for nobody else. That's God's love for you, his respect for you. You will be received through a special door, not through the public gate; you will be received as a special guest.
But the basic fundamental is, whatsoever the meditation, it has to fill this requirement: that the body, mind, consciousness, all three should function in unity. Then suddenly one day the fourth has arrived: the witnessing. Or if you want to, call it God; call it God or nirvana or Tao or whatsoever you will.
- from The Book of Wisdom, Chapter 23