I am a little confused. Is there a contradiction between living life totally, and at the same time witnessing it from outside?
I have seen the question. It was too long, so I told someone to summarize it, but in the summary it has lost its basic quest.
The question was that I am teaching witnessing but I also teach you to do it totally. And the problem to the questioner is that if we do it totally, then who will witness it? And if we witness it, at least a part of our consciousness will not be in the action, it will not be total. So he is asking whether we can totally be in the act, or we have to divide ourselves into a witness and into a doer. The question has arisen because you have only thought about it. You have not done anything to experience what I am saying.
First, witnessing is not a doing.
When the mirror reflects you, do you think it does something? It is simply its nature to reflect. There is no action on its part. Even when you are not there it is reflecting. It may be reflecting simply the walls of the room, it may be reflecting anything that is in front of it.
Reflection is not an activity. So it is with witnessing – witnessing is not an activity.
If you think logically, the contradiction will arise. But if you do what I am saying, you can be totally into an act – your body will be in it, your mind will be in it, your heart will be in it, and that is your totality. But there is something beyond these three which is not counted as you, which is not you, which is part of the universal consciousness, which is the divine in you – and that is the mirror.
So when you are witnessing, your mirror is reflecting. You are totally in the act – your body, your mind, your heart – everything is in the act. But there is something more than these three things.
In the East we have called it simply by number. We have not given it a name for a certain reason.
We have called it the fourth, turiya. It is a number, it is not a name. We have not given it a name because any name will create some meaning in your mind, some ideas in your mind; a number cannot do that.
You consist of three elements: the body, the mind, the heart. The fourth is just a silent presence in you – it is not you. Don’t include it within the boundaries of you; it is beyond you. It is capable of reflecting you as totally in the act. And the action will not divide because it is not an action; it is witnessing, it is simply reflecting.
It is one thing to think about it; then immediately the logic, the reason will say that you are doing two things – you are walking and you are witnessing. That divides. But this is only logical reasoning.
Just try to walk silently, joyously – put everything into a morning walk. Your body is relishing the morning sun, the air; your mind is full of the rising life all around you; your heart is throbbing with excitement; the birds are singing and the sky is so colorful… You be just the walk. And you will be surprised that there is someone witnessing which cannot say “I” – which is not your ego, which is the universal self.
Your body is different from mine, your mind is different from everybody else’s, your heart is different from everybody else’s. But in consciousness we are one continent – nobody is an island. That universal consciousness is always there. Either you are aware of it, then it makes your life a rejoicing, or you are unaware of it, then your life becomes just a dragging somehow towards death.
So there is no contradiction at all. But remember, there are many experiences. If you think about them you will find contradictions. If you experience them you will not find any contradiction.
When you ask a question try to experience it not just out of thinking. Ask out of your experience, and then it will be a totally different thing. Everything is not logical, and it is good that everything is not logical. That’s why there is some mystery. That’s why there is some unknowable surrounding you. There is a possibility to discover it, and that discovery is the greatest ecstasy.
I have not found any contradiction in my experience, but in thinking, I agree with you there is contradiction.
But I am not telling you to think about it, I am telling you to live it.
From The Sword and the Lotus, Chapter Twelve
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