I used to ask myself, “Who am I?” It is impossible to count how many days and nights I passed in this query. The intellect gave answers heard from others, or born of conditioning. All of them were borrowed, lifeless. They brought no contentment. They resonated a little at the surface, and then disappeared. The inner being was not touched by them. No echo of them was heard in the depths. There were many answers to the question, but none was correct. And I was untouched by them. They could not rise to the level of the question.
Then I saw that the question came from the center but the replies touched only the periphery. The question was mine, but the answers came from outside; the question arose from my innermost being, the replies were imposed from outside. This insight became a revolution. A new dimension was revealed.
The responses of the intellect were meaningless. They had no relevance to the problem. An illusion had shattered. And what a relief it was!
It seemed as if a closed door had been flung open, filling the darkness with light. The intellect had been providing the answers – that was the mistake. Because of these false answers, the real answer could not arise. Some truth was struggling to surface. In the depths of consciousness some seed was seeking the way to break open the ground in order to reach the light. Intellect was the obstruction.
When this was made plain, the answers began to subside. Knowledge acquired from outside began to evaporate. The question went ever deeper. I did not do anything, only kept on watching.
Something novel was happening. I was speechless. What was there to do? I was, at the most, simply a witness. The reactions of the periphery were fading, perishing, becoming nonexistent. The center now began to resonate more fully.
“Who am I?” My entire being was throbbing with this thirst.
What a violent storm it was! Every breath quaked and trembled in it.
“Who am I?” – Like an arrow, the question pierced through everything and moved within.
I remember – what an acute thirst it was! My very life had turned into thirst. Everything was burning. And like a flame of fire the question stood forth, “Who am I?”
The surprise was that the intellect was completely silent. The incessant flow of thoughts had stopped. What had happened? The periphery was absolutely still. There were no thoughts, no conditioning of the past.
Only I was there – and there was the question too. No, no – I myself was the question.
And then the explosion. In a moment, everything was transformed. The question had dropped.
The answer had come from some unknown dimension.
Truth is attained through a sudden explosion, not gradually.
It cannot be compelled to appear. It comes.
Emptiness is the solution, not words. Becoming answer-less is the answer.
Someone asked yesterday – and someone or the other asks every day – “What is the answer?”
I say, “If I mention it, it is meaningless. Its meaning lies in realizing it oneself.”
From Seeds of Wisdom #13
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