Remember these seven words. Christ means to me these seven words, and this is his whole alchemy. First: catalytic; second: catalepsy; third: catharsis; fourth: catastrophe; fifth: cross; sixth: conversion; and seventh: Christ-consciousness. This is his whole alchemy, how he used to transform people. His work is different from Buddha’s; his methodology is different; different from Krishna’s, different from Mohammed’s. He is a unique Master.
First: catalytic. Jesus’ work is that of a catalytic agent. He wants people to be in contact with him, what Hindus call Satsang. To be in contact with the Master, to be in the presence of the Master – the very presence functions. Jesus does not give methods to people, that is not his way. Patanjali’s way is to create devices, methods; that is the way of Gurdjieff too – to create methods and devices so people can start growing. Jesus’ way is that of Satsang. He transforms people just by his touch. He overpowers people, he surrounds them. His energy starts dancing around them. He starts pulsating his being, and in his pulse – that powerful pulse of Jesus – the other person also starts pulsating. In the beginning, hesitant, afraid, not knowing where he is going, but slowly, slowly he gains momentum. It is like a dancer. Have you not watched when a dancer is dancing and the music is on, something of the dancer starts happening in you? Your feet start moving, you start tapping the chair with your hand, your head starts nodding. You are filled with it. Some pulsation has reached you.
Jesus’ methodology is to pulsate people through his pulse, to magnetise people through his magnetism; to be with them. And the best way to be with them is when they are very, very relaxed.
Hence Jesus was always ready to go to people, to drink with them, to eat with them, because that is the most relaxing moment in people’s lives. Buddha has never done that – that was not his way. When people are eating, they are relaxed.
Have you not watched it? Even businessmen like to take you for lunch, because then things are easier. You are more positive, you are more relaxed, you say yes more easily. So if the salesman wants to sell the car to you, he takes you for lunch. When your belly is feeling good and you are feeling very contented, and the aroma of the food and the joy of the food, and you are feeling really satisfied… it is very difficult to say no. It is easier for the salesman to sell something to you. And Jesus is the greatest salesman. It is not just accidental that his religion has become the greatest religion as far as numbers are concerned, the greatest salesman ever.
He would go to people to take food with them or to drink with them, and that was the moment when he would try to infiltrate their being with his presence. That was his catalytic, magnetic power. When people are drinking… You have drunk a little bit – you become more relaxed. Then things are more easy, you are less defensive.
Gurdjieff used to do that – that was his everyday work. Just as every day I go on talking to you, every day he used to invite his disciples for food. That was the greatest thing. Every day, every night. And it was not an ordinary dinner. It used to continue for five hours, six hours, seven hours, almost half the night. And then drinking… and he would force you to eat and drink, and he himself would be serving and it would be difficult to say no; eating, drinking, laughing, you would be less defensive. And he would be telling jokes, and people would become very, very relaxed. The atmosphere would become very homely – utterly homely. They would forget who Gurdjieff was and who they were. They would relax into his being, and his work would start.
That’s exactly what I am doing I go on talking to you. That is a kind of feast, a feast of words. You become involved in the words; you become utterly involved with the words, and my work, the Real work starts. That is indirect.
So the first thing, the first word to be understood about Christ is ’catalytic’. He is not a great philosopher like Buddha. He is not a great scientist like Patanjali. He is not a singer like Krishna is. But he has his own method and that method is of the catalytic agent.
In the East there have been many Masters like that, but Jesus is the ultimate in Satsanga: just being with people.
The catalytic agent means that nothing is done to you, but something happens to you. The catalytic agent does not go into you, and does not do anything in you. But just the presence, just the very presence provokes you, inspires you, and something starts growing in you. Just as scientists say, if you want to make water, hydrogen and oxygen are needed; but they cannot meet unless electricity is present as a catalytic agent. It does not enter into them, it remains aloof, but its very presence helps them to meet. That is very miraculous. Science has not yet been able to know how the catalytic agent works, because nothing goes out of it, it is simply there. But you can understand it.
Sometimes I am simply here, and something becomes silent in you. And this can happen even when you are far away if you remember me. If you remember totally, immediately you will find something has changed. The vibe around you is no more the same; something has fallen quiet, silent. The turmoil of the mind is a little far away, not so close by. You are settled and centered.
Just the other day somebody asked the question ‘While I am here listening to you and to your words, much is happening to me. But when I go back, will it continue to happen when I will be listening to your tapes or reading your books?’
It depends on you. It can’t depend on books, on tapes, but it depends on you. If in those moments of listening to the tapes or reading the books you can feel my presence, you can visualise my presence, you can think of me and remember me, it will go on happening. There will be no problem. Distance does not make much difference.
For the first time it is needed to be close. Once the contact has happened, then you can call me anywhere. And when I say you can call me anywhere, I mean you can simply fall into my presence anywhere, you can just remember me. Calm and quiet, remember me, be full of my presence, and suddenly it will be there, and it will function as a catalytic agent.
A catalytic agent is a miraculous thing. This is Jesus’ real miracle. Tao has a word for it, they call it Wei-Wu-Wei, action without action. The Master does not Do anything to you, he does not interfere in your being, he simply is there. But he is pulsating and his pulsation is strong; his pulsation is vital.
He is like a great wind which goes on blowing, surrounding you. You are like a fragile tree; you start swaying in the wind and something starts happening to you – the dance. The wind is invisible, and in fact the wind is not doing anything to you, it is simply blowing on its own way. But it can give you the thrill, it can wake you up! This is what acid people call a ’contact high’.
It happens sometimes when somebody has taken LSD and is really deep into it, gone, and you are just taking care of the person. You have not taken LSD, you are just taking care of the person because it is dangerous to leave him, and suddenly you start feeling that something is turning on in you. This is now a universal experience, because so many people in this generation have taken LSD, marijuana, psilocybin and things like that. This is a universal experience now, that sometimes just by being in the presence of somebody who has gone deep in his LSD trip, you start feeling high. Something starts moving in you. Wings grow, and you start flying. And you have not taken anything! Then what is happening? Because that man’s pulsation is so powerful in this moment, that man is blowing like a great wind, he takes you with him unawares. You are pulled by him, you are taken by his stream of consciousness.
This is a new experience in the West, but in the East it is very ancient. And this is nothing, because LSD is LSD – such a small quantity you take. But a Jesus is pure LSD – just LSD and nothing else! He is made of the stuff LSD. A Buddha is absolute marijuana. Each single cell of his body is marijuana. It is not chemical, it is spiritual. It is such a vital force that there is no other force which is more vital. The only question is if you become available to it – then it turns you on.
The second word is catalepsy – the suspension of your old being. When you are in contact with a Christ or a Buddha, your old being is immediately suspended out of the very shock; you cannot function as you used to function before. The very presence of the Christ is such a shock that everything is suspended. For a moment all thoughts stop, all feelings disappear. For a moment you may miss a heartbeat. That’s why it happens that around great Masters you will see many people who look like zombies. They are in a kind of suspension.
Just the other day Divyananda came to me. He works in my garden. And he said ‘What is happening to me? I have become almost like a zombie, and I am afraid. Should I go and do something else?’ And I told him ‘You be a zombie. Be a perfect zombie, that’s all. You continue your work.’ Now something immensely valuable is happening, but he cannot understand it yet. This is what is happening: catalepsy. He is open to me, and working in my garden he has become even more open to me. He is in shock; he is forgetting who he is. He is losing his old identity, he is paralysed! Why paralysed? – Because the old cannot function and the new has yet to be born. So he is in the interval.
This is going to happen to many. Don’t be afraid when it happens! It will go, it is not going to remain, but it is on the way. It happens. This is a state of not knowing: you don’t know what is what, all your knowledge is lost; all your cleverness is gone. You become idiotic. You look like an idiot. People will say that you have become hypnotised or something, that you are no more your old self. That is true. But it is a kind of shock, and good, because it will destroy the past, it will make you discontinuous with the past, and it will bring the fresh, the new. It will allow something original to happen. But before the original happens, the past has to go.
You are like a pot in which there has been poison for a long time, for many years, for many lives. Now before something can be poured into it, the poison has to be thrown out and the pot has to be cleaned, utterly cleaned. Even if a little bit of poison remains hanging around, it will destroy the new that is coming, it will kill it.
That is the whole meaning of sannyas and disciplehood: that your past has to be completely washed away; your memory, your ego, your identity – all have to go. When you are just an empty pot, then something more is possible. That is the third state: catharsis. When your head is in shock, your heart becomes free, because the head is not allowing the heart to be free. It is keeping the heart as a prisoner. When the head has stopped in shock… And each Master beheads you, cuts your head mercilessly; destroys your reason, destroys your logic; brings you down from the head. And the only way is to cut the head completely.
This is the third state: catharsis. When the head is no more functioning, its control is lost and the prisoner is free, then the heart starts throbbing again – maybe after many, many lives.
And for many lives you have been repressing your emotions, feelings, tears, love – they all flood you. That’s what catharsis is – the appearance of the heart. The repressed explodes and the emotional bursts out – a kind of earthquake or a heartquake, a volcanic situation. You are flooded by the unconscious and the irrational. That’s why a real disciple always passes through a kind of insanity around a Master.
The fourth state is catastrophe. When reason is gone and the heart goes mad it is catastrophe.
And then the ego starts falling into pieces, because the ego is nothing but control. The control of the head over the heart is creating the ego. When the head is no more functioning, it is in shock, catalepsy, and the heart is in catharsis. The ego disappears because the ego is no more there. It cannot be there, the control is gone. And when the ego falls it looks like catastrophe. All is lost, chaos arises and now one feels that one has really gone mad. It is not just a temporary madness. It looks now as if it is going to remain there forever. One cannot look beyond it.
This is what Christian mystics call ’the dark night of the soul’: a kind of hopelessness arises. One is utterly lost and there seems to be no possibility of getting out- of it. One is drowned and drowning. And the powers that are drowning you are so vast that there seems to be no hope that you can get over them. The shores are no more visible; you are in the middle of the ocean.
And then comes the fifth: the cross. The ego dies on the cross.
In the fourth state it simply disintegrates, but goes on lingering in fragments, clinging here and there. In the fifth it dies, the ego completely dies – no more identity with body or mind, a state of negation, death, emptiness. Great trembling, fear… one is on the verge of the abyss called God. That’s where Jesus found him – on the cross. That cross has to come to everybody. Jesus says everybody has to carry his cross on his shoulders.
Then comes the sixth: conversion. Only when you are dead does God become alive in you. Only when the seed dies does it become a tree, only when the river disappears into the ocean does it become one with the ocean: conversion.
Conversion is a beautiful word very badly used by Christians. They think that if somebody is a Hindu and becomes a Christian, this is conversion. This is not conversion. A Hindu becoming a Christian, this is nothing. He has simply changed one prison for another, one priest for another, one book for another. But there has been no real change, no transformation. A Christian can become a Hindu; Hindus think this is conversion. This is not conversion. Conversion happens only when the ego dies and God is born in you. Conversion is when the human becomes divine, not when a Hindu becomes Christian or a Christian becomes Hindu. But when the human becomes divine, when Jesus becomes Christ, then there is conversion; when Gautama becomes Buddha, then there is conversion.
In the fifth, the cross, the ego dies. In the sixth, the self is born – the supreme self, the Atman, your real self. For the first time you know who you are. Mountains are again mountains, rivers are again rivers. All confusion gone… clarity arises. Your eyes become transparent, you can see things. Now there are no more any prejudices, no more any ideologies. One is neither Hindu, nor Mohammedan, nor communist, nor fascist. One simply is… a purity of isness. This is where what Hindus call Satyam, Shivam, Sunderam is felt. Satyam means truth, Shivam means good, and Sunderam means beauty. Not before that.
Before that, what you call beauty is nothing but lust. What you call good is nothing but conditioned morality. What you call truth is nothing but correspondence between you, your statement and things.
It is like you say ‘In the room there are three chairs.’ And somebody goes and finds three chairs, so it corresponds, it is ’true’. This has nothing to do with truth, it is just correspondence, a true statement. But what about truth? What is truth? – Three chairs? If there are two chairs, it is untrue. This is only linguistic and logical truth.
Truth means that which is hidden behind the trees and the mountains, hidden behind people, hidden behind everything. That ’hidden’ becomes unhidden, then you come to truth.
Truth… and then you come to Shivam; your life becomes good. Not in the sense of being a moral person, a Pharisee, a puritan, no; your life becomes spontaneously good. Not that you try to do good. But whatsoever you do is good. You cannot do bad! The bad is impossible, because you cannot think of yourself as separate from others. How can you do bad? You cannot hurt anybody because now hurting anybody is hurting yourself. Your ego is gone. You hurt somebody and you are hurt. You kill somebody and you are killing yourself. You steal from somebody and you are stealing from your own pocket. Now goodness is just natural – not imposed – spontaneous.
And Sunderam. And only then, when you have known what is and you have become spontaneous, can you know what beauty is. Beauty is not only poetry, it is the vision of truth, it is the vision of God.
But one step more. It is like you are one thousand miles away from the Himalayas in the early morning and you see in the clear sky no clouds, and the Himalayan peaks are standing there.
Those virgin snows shining like gold in the morning sun… but you are a thousand miles away. It is beautiful, it fills you with awe, but you are still distant.
So in conversion: Satyam, Shivam, Sunderam.
And then the seventh state is Christ-consciousness. You are no more away from the peaks, you have become the peaks! You are no more away from those virgin snows, you are those snows. You are not seeing sunrays reflected on the snow, you are those sunrays. Christ-consciousness is born: one becomes one with the whole. One becomes that which one really is. One becomes one with God. Buddha calls it Nirvana, Christ calls it ‘kingdom of God’, Hindus call it Satchitananda. Now again another trinity arises.
First in the sixth: Satyam, Shivam, Sunderam – truth, good, beauty.
In the seventh: Sat – being, Chit – consciousness, Ananda – bliss.
Remember these seven words and meditate on them.
Excerpted from I Say Unto You, Vol 2, Chapter Five
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