What is the relationship between Zorba and Zen?
The whole past of humanity has tried to keep them separate, and this has been an unfortunate experiment. The Zorba has remained incomplete, just superficial. And Zen has remained incomplete; it has only the inner world, and the outer is missing.
My Manifesto of Zen is that Zorba and Zen are not antagonistic to each other. The Zorba can melt into Zen, and only then will both be complete.
The man who has lived outside has lived very superficially, and the man who does not know anything about the inner, knows nothing about the existential, about the eternal. And on the other hand, the man who knows something of the inner starts thinking that the outer is illusory.
Nothing is illusory.
The outer and the inner are part of one existence.
I want Zorbas to be buddhas and vice versa. And unless this becomes possible, there will not be many buddhas, and there will not be many Zorbas either. In the completion of Zorba and Zen, a tremendous quality comes to your life: you relish every moment of the outside world, every flower of the outside world. And you relish simultaneously the inner freedom, the inner joy, the inner drunkenness. There is no question of any division. But humanity has lived in a divided way, and that has been a catastrophe.
It is time for Zorba to start meditating, and it is time for the people who are meditators not to allow themselves to escape from the world. They have to come to the world with all their juice, with all their ecstasy… to share.
It seems very difficult to understand, because the whole tradition of the world goes against it. But I don’t see any difficulty.
In myself I have joined Zorba and Zen together; hence I don’t see any difficulty. I am in the world, and yet I am not of the world.
I rejoice in the birds, the flowers, the trees.
I rejoice in myself, in my silence, and I don’t see there is any difference. The inner and the outer slowly have become melted into one whole. And unless your inner and outer become one whole, you will remain incomplete – and incompletion is misery.
Only in completion is there bliss.
Only in completion have you come home.
You have come to existence without any conflict, in tremendous ease, relaxed.
The Zorba in the past has been tense and worried that perhaps he is not the right person. And the man of Zen has been with the tension that he has to avoid this, he has to avoid that – that he has to become a recluse far away in the mountains. But the very fear of the world shows your misunderstanding.
The world has not to be feared, it has to be loved.
We are the world.
There is no question of escaping from anything. Every moment everything has to be enjoyed without any guilt, without any inhibition. But all the religions have been against it.
I proclaim with this manifesto a totally new sky for religious consciousness: the sky of completion, the joining of the inner and the outer, of the material and the spiritual, of Zorba and the Buddha.
From The Zen Manifesto, Chapter Five
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