Though your emphasis has been for us, as individuals, to go within to save ourselves, I guess I am still naïve enough to feel that our love, our dancing, our joy could still save this beautiful planet. Can you please say something about this?
The question is meaningful, but very complex to understand. You are asking, “Though your emphasis has been for us, as individuals, to go within to save ourselves, I guess I am still naive enough to feel that our love, our dancing, our joy, could still save this beautiful planet.”
It may save the beautiful planet, but you should not carry the idea within you; otherwise it will destroy your love and your dance and your joy. If deep down you are guessing that “my love, my dancing, my joy can save the whole planet,” it is the strategy of the ego. You are becoming a savior. You are becoming so great that you can save the whole planet, just by your love and just by your dancing, just by your joy.
Try to understand the complexity. It is possible, if individuals are full of love, full of joy, and their life is not a drag, but a dance… as a by-product it is possible the planet may be saved. But as a by-product — you cannot take the credit for saving the world.
This is the trouble: if you start thinking that you are dancing to save the world, your dance is destroyed. Then you are not dancing totally, then you are not dancing here and now; then your dancing has become a means to save the world. Then your love is not pure love — it is just another means, but the end is to save the world. It will be easy for you to understand if I tell you a Sufi story…
One Sufi mystic was so full of love, and so full of joy — his whole life was laughter, music, dancing. And the story says God became very interested in him because he never asked anything, he never prayed. His whole life was a prayer, there was no need to pray.
He never went to the mosque; he never even uttered the name of God; his whole existence was the argument for the presence of God. If anybody asked him whether God exists or not he simply laughed — but his laughter was neither yes nor no.
God himself became intrigued with that strange mystic and he came to the mystic and said, “I am immensely happy because that’s how I want people to be — not that they should pray for one hour and do everything against it for twenty-three hours. Not that they should become very pious when they enter the mosque, and when they go out, they leave their piousness in the mosque and they are just their old selves: angry, jealous, full of anxiety, full of violence.”
“I have watched you and I have loved you. This is the way: you have become the prayer.
You are, right now, my only argument in the world that something more than man exists — although you have never argued, you have not even uttered my name. Those are superfluous things… but you live, you love, you are so full of joy that there is no need for any language; your very presence becomes the argument for my existence. I want to give you a blessing. You can ask for anything.”
The sage said, “But I don’t need anything. I am so joyous, and I cannot conceive there can be anything more. Forgive me, I cannot ask because I really don’t need anything. You are generous, you are loving, you are compassionate; but I am so over-full, there is no space within me for anything else. You will have to forgive me, I cannot ask.”
God said, “I had thought that you would not ask, so don’t ask for yourself — but you can ask for others, because there are millions of people who are miserable, sick, have never known anything for which they can be grateful. I can give you powers to do miracles, and you can change the lives of all these people.”
The sage said, “If you are insistent, then with a condition I can accept your gifts.”
God said, “With a condition? You really are strange. What is the condition?”
He said, “My condition is that I should not become aware of what is happening through me, by you. It should happen behind my back; it should happen through my shadow, not through me. I may be passing and my shadow may fall on a dead tree, and the tree may become alive again — again lush green, again heavy with flowers and fruits — but I should not know it, because I don’t want to fall back.”
“If I know it — that I have done it, or even that God has chosen me as the instrument to do it — it is dangerous. So my condition is: a blind man may start seeing, but neither should he know that it is because of me, nor should I know that it is because of me. My shadow behind my back will do all the miracles.”
“If you can accept my condition, and remember that I should not know at all… because I am so full of joy, so blissful. Don’t drag me back into the miserable world. Don’t drag me back to become again an ‘I.’”
And it is said that God said to him, “You are not only strange, you are unique and rare.
And this will be so: you will never know what things are happening around you. Miracles will be happening around you — wherever you will go, miracles will happen. Neither those people will know that you have done those miracles, nor you will know that you have done those miracles. I will remember the condition.”
There is a possibility: the individual coming to enlightenment and celebration is bound to affect the whole destiny of humanity. But it is going to be a by-product. It is going to happen behind your back, through your shadow — not by you. Even guessing is dangerous, because that guessing can give you the ego and can destroy your joy, can destroy your dance. And if your joy and your love and your dance are destroyed, then there is not going to be any by-product to save the planet.
None of my sannyasins are to become saviors. The world has known many saviors, and the world is not saved. And the reason is that they were not as alert as the Sufi mystic; they started bragging about their miracles, they started nursing their egos through their miracles. Then their miracles became only magic, just tricks practiced well. There is nothing miraculous in it.
The greatest miracle in the world is that you should dance and disappear in the dance — then let the dance do whatever it can do. That you should love and disappear in the love — then let the love do whatever it can do. You cannot claim that you are doing it — you have already disappeared.
In your disappearance is the whole possibility of some miracle happening. So please don’t guess; otherwise deep inside your love will remain half-hearted — you are doing it for some purpose. And when love becomes a purpose it is no longer love. Your joy will become phony, because if you are joyful so something can happen in the world, you are not really joyful — you are using joy. And if your dance is a means towards an end, it cannot be total. Unless your dance is an end in itself, there is no possibility of its being total.
And only a total dance, an authentic love, a whole-hearted joy, perhaps may create some miracles around you. But you will not be the one who has done them; you will not be the one who can brag about them. They will happen only when you are not.
God happens only when you have moved out of the way and left yourself totally empty, spacious. It is a very strange phenomenon: The guest only comes inside the house when the host disappears.
From The Hidden Splendor #16
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