Is it possible that the no-mind evolves quite naturally out of the mind without struggle and anguish, without exploding, hammering, cutting and such wild acts? Is the very idea of no-mind, which seems to be in the mind and yet transcending the mind, a seed like form of the no-mind? Is it helpful to meditate along these lines of mind-transcending concepts like eternity, nirvana, death? My mind seems to explode when I do. It feels like I am pushing over my limit and I get afraid of becoming schizophrenic.
The no-mind cannot arise out of the mind. It is not a growth of the mind, it is not in continuity with the mind; it is discontinuous. It is as discontinuous as disease is with health. The health does not arise out of the disease; it arises out of the removal of the disease. Disease was encroaching on the space and was not allowing the health to bloom.
The disease has to be removed. It is like a rock blocking the path of a small spring. You remove the rock and the spring starts flowing. It does not arise out of the rock. The rock was blocking it, the rock was a block. So is the mind. Mind is the block for the no-mind.
No-mind simply means that which is not mind at all. How can it arise out of the mind? If it arises out of the mind, it may be super-mind, but it can’t be no-mind. That’s where I differ from Shree Aurobindo. He talks about the super-mind. A super-mind is the same mind more decorated, more cultivated, more cultured, more sophisticated, more strong, more integrated — but all the time the same old mind.
Buddha says not super-mind but no-mind; not super-soul but no soul; not super-individuality, not super-self, but no-self, anatta. That is where Buddha is unique and his understanding the deepest. A super-mind is a growth, a no-mind is a leap, a jump. The no-mind has nothing to do with the mind at all. They never meet even, they never encounter each other. When the mind is there, the no-mind is not there. When the no-mind is there, the mind is not there. They don’t even say hello to each other — they can’t. The presence of the one is necessarily the absence of the other. So remember it.
That’s why I say Shree Aurobindo never became enlightened. He remained polishing the mind. He was a great mind, but to be a great mind is not to be enlightened. So is Bertrand Russell a great mind. But to be a great mind is not to be enlightened. So is Friedrich Nietzsche a great mind — and Aurobindo and Nietzsche have many similarities.
Nietzsche talks about the superman and Aurobindo also talks about the superman. But the superman will be a projected man. A superman will be this man; all the weaknesses destroyed, all the strengths strengthened — but this man. Bigger than this man, stronger than this man, higher than this man, but still on the same wavelength, the same ladder. There is no radical change, there has never been a discontinuity.
No-mind means discontinuity with all that you are. You have to die for no-mind to be. So the first thing. You ask, “Is it possible that the no-mind evolves quite naturally out of the mind?” No. It is not an evolution, it is a revolution. The mind is dropped and suddenly you find the no-mind is there, has always been there. The mind was clouding, making you confused, was not allowing you to see that which is. So it is not an evolution.
And you ask, “Is it possible without struggle and anguish?” It has nothing to do with struggle and anguish. No-mind has nothing to do with struggle and anguish. It does not come out of struggle and anguish. Anything that comes out of struggle and anguish will carry the wounds. Even if those wounds are healed, the scars will be carried. It will be again a continuity.
The struggle and anguish is not for the no-mind; the struggle and anguish arises because the mind struggles to keep itself in power. The fight is given by the mind. The mind does not want to go, the mind wants to stay. The mind has become so powerful; it possesses you. It says, “No, I am not going to get out. I am going to stay here.” The whole struggle and anguish is because of the mind. The no-mind has nothing to do with it. And you will have to go through this anguish and struggle. If you don’t go through the anguish and the struggle, the mind is not going to leave you.
And again let me repeat, the no-mind is not born out of your struggle; out of your struggle only comes the mind. The no-mind comes without any struggle. The rock gives you the struggle. It does not want to move. It has remained in that spot for centuries, for millennia — who are you to remove it? “And about what spring are you talking? There is none. I have been here for centuries and I know — there is none. Forget all about it!” But you want to remove the rock. The rock is heavy, the rock is rooted in the earth. It has remained there for so long. It has attachments; it does not want to go. And it knows nothing of the spring. But you will have to remove this rock. Unless this rock is removed, the spring will not flow.
You ask: “without exploding, hammering, cutting and such wild acts?” The no-mind has nothing to do with your acts. But the mind will not go. You will have to hammer and cut and you will have to do a thousand and one things.
Is the very idea of no-mind, which seems to be in the mind and yet transcending the mind, a seed like form of the no-mind?
No — there is no seed in the mind of the no-mind. The mind cannot contain even the seed of no-mind. The mind has no space to contain it. No-mind is vast, like the sky. How can it be contained in a tiny thing, the mind? And the mind is already too full — full of thoughts, desires, fantasies, imaginations, memories. There is no space.
In the first place it is very tiny — it cannot contain the no-mind. In the second place it is so full, overcrowded, so noisy. The no-mind is silent, the mind is noisy. The mind cannot contain it; the mind has to cease. In that cessation is the beginning of a new life, a new being, a new world.
Is it helpful, you ask, to meditate along these lines of mind-transcending concepts like eternity, nirvana, death?
Those so-called mind-transcending concepts are still concepts and are of the mind. When you are thinking of eternity, what will you do? You will think. When you are thinking of nirvana, what is going to happen? Your mind will spin and weave, and your mind will give you beautiful ideas about nirvana — but that will be all mind work. What can you think about death? What will you think if you think about death? You don’t know. How can you think anything about that which you don’t know?
Mind is perfectly capable in repeating the known; with the unknown it is impotent. You don’t know eternity; all that you know is time. Even when you think of eternity it is nothing but lengthened time, stretched time — but it is time. What do you know about nirvana? — all that you have heard about it, read about it. That is not nirvana. The word nirvana is not nirvana, and the concept of nirvana is not nirvana. The word God is not
God, and all the pictures and all the statues that have been made of God have nothing to do with him — because he has no name and no form.
And what are you going to think about death? How can you think about death? You have heard a few things, you have seen a few people dying, but you have never seen death.
When you see a man dying what do you see? He breathes no more; that’s all that you see.
His body has become cold; that’s all that you see. What more? Is this death? — The body becoming cold, breathing stopping? is this all? What has happened to the innermost core of the person? You cannot know without dying. You cannot know without experiencing.
The only way to know the unknown is to experience it.
So these concepts won’t help. They may rather, on the contrary, strengthen the mind, because the mind will say, “Look, I can even supply you mind-transcending concepts.
See what I am doing for you. Keep me with you always. I will help you to become enlightened. Without me you will be nowhere. Without me how will you think about death and nirvana and eternity? I am absolutely essential. Without me you will not be anything at all.”
No, these meditations won’t help. You have to see it — that the mind is not going to help at all. When you see the point that mind is not going to help at all, in that very helplessness, in that very state, there is silence; all stops. If the mind cannot do anything, then nothing is left to do. Suddenly all thinking is paralyzed; it is pointless. In that paralysis you will have the first glimpse of no-mind… just a small window will open. In that stopping of the mind you will have a taste of no-mind. And then things will start moving. Then it will be easier for you to get lost into the boundary-lessness.
You cannot meditate; you have to go into it. Meditating upon it is a pseudo activity; it is a kind of avoiding, escaping. You are afraid of death, you think about death. You are afraid of nirvana, you think about nirvana. Thinking gives you the feeling that you are capable even of thinking about death and nirvana.
My mind seems to explode when I do.
Mind is very cunning. It must be deceiving you — because mind cannot explode while you are thinking. About what you are thinking does not matter; while you are thinking, mind cannot explode. Mind will be enjoying it, and in that very enjoyment you are thinking you are exploding.
It feels like I am pushing over my limit and I get afraid of becoming schizophrenic.
Dinesh, you need not be afraid of ever becoming schizophrenic, because you already are – everybody is. Mind is schizophrenic, because mind knows nothing of unity. Mind is always split. Mind always has alternatives, to be or not to be, to do this or to do that.
Mind is always indecisive. Even if you choose something it is only a part of the mind that chooses it, the other part remains against it.
The mind is never total, so mind is schizophrenic. You need not be afraid of that. To be in the mind is to be schizophrenic. Only Buddhas are beyond it. The whole humanity is schizophrenic, more or less. When you go beyond a point then you have to seek and search for the psychiatrist, but the difference is only of degrees; the difference is only of quantity not quality. Even between you and your psychoanalyst there is only a difference of degrees.
Remember, mind will not help. Mind cannot help, mind can only hinder. Seeing this, no-mind arrives. It is not that you bring it; it arrives on its own accord.
From The Diamond Sutra, Discourse #2
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