The fourth sutra:
Listen to the song of life.
Look for it and listen to it first in your own heart. At first you may say it is not there; when I search, I find only discord. Look deeper. If again you are disappointed, pause and look deeper again. There is a natural melody, an obscure fount in every human heart. It may be hidden over and utterly concealed and silenced – but it is there.
Listen to the song of life. Life is a melody; existence is musical – for so many reasons. Existence is harmony; it is not anarchy. It is not a chaos; it is a cosmos, a unity. So complex, so vast, but still united. And life pulsates – from the lowest atom to the highest star. Wave lengths differ, pulsations are of different frequencies, but the whole pulsates in a deep unity, in a harmony. Plotinus has called this ‘the music of the spheres’. The whole existence is a music. It is musical in another sense also. Yoga, tantra and all the schools that have been working esoterically for the inner journey of human consciousness say that life consists of sound; existence consists of sound.
Science differs, but not very much. Science says that the basic particle is electricity not sound. But science also says that sound is a mode of electricity, a sort of electrical expression – that sound consists of electrical particles.
Yoga says that the basic element, the basic unit of existence, is sound, and electricity is a mode of sound. That’s why we have the myth that, through music, fire can be created. If fire [if electricity] is nothing but a combination of sounds, then fire can be created.
This difference between the scientific attitude and the yoga attitude is worth understanding. Why does science say that sound is nothing but electricity and yoga say that electricity is nothing but sound? Because science approaches existence through matter, and yoga approaches it through life.
The deeper you penetrate within yourself, the more you will find a new world of sound and silence. When you reach to the innermost core of your being, you will find the soundless sound. That’s what Hindus have called nad: anahat nad – sound which is uncreated, which is your very life. It is not created by anything; it is not produced. It is just there. It is cosmic.
Aum is the symbol of that sound. If you go deeply within, when the ultimate core is reached, you hear the sound aum. It is not that you produce it. It is simply there, vibrating. It is the basic element of life.
This sutra says Listen to the song of life. But you cannot listen to it unless you have already heard it within your own heart. Whatsoever you can see must be seen first within your own heart otherwise you cannot see it. You cannot hear it. The basic experience must be the inner. Only then can the outer be experienced.
Whatsoever you know in the outer world is nothing but a reflection or a projection. If you are filled with love, the whole of life appears to be filled with love. If you are sitting with your beloved or with your lover, the whole existence is okay. Nothing is wrong, there is no misery. The whole existence is filled with a deep music, because you are filled with a deep music. There is no discord in you; your heart feels a deep harmony. You are so one with your beloved or your lover or your friend that this oneness spreads all over.
But if you are in deep agony – suffering, sad, depressed – the whole existence seems to be depressed. It is you, not the existence. The existence remains the same, but the climates of your mind change. In one climate the existence appears sad. In another climate the existence seems to be celebrating. It is not; existence is always the same. But you go on changing, and your mind goes on being projected. Existence works as a mirror. You are mirrored in it.
But if you think that whatsoever you have interpreted is the fact and not just a projection, you will fall into deeper and deeper illusions. But if you can understand that it is not a fact but a fiction of the mind – that it depends on you, not on existence itself – then you can change. You can go through a mutation, an inner revolution can happen, because now it is up to you.
The world can be a chaos if you are a chaos. The world can be a cosmos if you are a cosmos. The world can be dead if you are dead inwardly; the world can be alive, abundantly alive, if you are alive within. It depends on you. You are the world. Only you exist really, nothing else. Everything else is just a mirror.
I remember one anecdote.
An emperor, a very powerful emperor, created a palace, a palace of mirrors. All around, all over the palace, there were mirrors. The emperor was a very beautiful person and he was so infatuated with his own beauty that he was never attracted in any way to anyone else. He was a narcissist. He loved only himself and he thought that everyone else was ugly.
Finally, he debarred everyone else from entering his palace. He lived alone there, looking at his own face everywhere in the palace. There were mirrors everywhere, thousands and thousands of reflections of his own face.
But then by and by he got bored, fed up. He started disliking himself. He kept meeting himself the whole day, encountering himself. He became ill; he became sad and depressed. He became so dull that he was almost on the verge of death. He was simply fed up with himself.
Then suddenly he remembered: “This palace is my own creation. I need not be here. There is no one forcing me to be here.”
So he broke one mirrored wall – he threw a chair through it. And for the first time in many years, the sky looked within. It was a full-moon night and the full moon peeped within. A fresh world, a new world, alive. He came in contact with it.
He jumped out of his hellhole, out of the prison. Now he was not dead, not dull, not on the point of death. He started dancing, he started celebrating. He forgot his face completely. And it is said that he never looked in a mirror again.
This is what is happening to each one of us. It is not an anecdote about some unknown emperor. It is about you. You live in a mirrored house. When you look at your wife’s face it is not her real face that you see. It is a projection. It is your own face reflected in your wife’s face. When you look at a flower it is not the flower you are looking at. It is your own mental flower projected onto the real flower that you are looking at.
Everywhere, you move with your own mirrors, your own images. And then, of course, you are bored, you are fed up with the whole thing, and you say, “Life is misery.” You say, “There seems to be no meaning to it.” You say, “It would be better to commit suicide. There seems to be no purpose to life. I’m going nowhere, moving around and around in a circle. It leads nowhere. Every day is the same, the same repetition.” But it is not because of existence; it is because of you.
Throw out those mirrors, break those mirrors. Come out of your palace, come out of your imprisonment, and look at the world not through thoughts, not through moods. Look at the world with a naked eye, listen to it with a naked ear. Don’t allow any mental state to come between you and the world.
This is what I call meditation: looking at the world without the mind. Then everything is new, fresh. Everything is alive, eternally alive; everything is divine. But to come to this point you will have to make deep contact, a deep penetration, into your own heart; because there, life’s juice is awaiting you. You may call it ‘elixir’. It is awaiting you.
This sutra says:
Listen to the song of life.
Look for it and listen to it first in your own heart. At first you may say it is not there; when I search, I find only discord. Look deeper. If again you are disappointed, pause and look again. There is a natural melody, an obscure fount in every human heart. It may be hidden over and utterly concealed and silenced – but it is there.
When, for the first time, one tries to enter within, one encounters noise: crowds, thoughts, madness; everything but silence. But don’t be disheartened. Be indifferent to all this noise that you encounter within.
When I say, “Be indifferent,” I mean don’t do anything about it; just be indifferent. Don’t say, “This is bad.” Don’t say, “How can I stop it?” Don’t try to stop it; you cannot. Allow it to flow – just as if clouds are floating in the sky and you are watching them. Or as if traffic is going on in the street and you are watching. Just stand aside and watch the traffic moving on, or stand on the bank and look at the river flowing. Don’t do anything; just stand there. Indifferent, not interested, not in any way involved.
If you can do this – this is what witnessing is. If you can do this, by and by you will penetrate deeper and deeper. Don’t be disheartened, because ultimately, finally, a deep musical source, a deep harmony, a deep rhythmic existence is waiting within you. Penetrate this crowd and you will reach it.
At the very base of your nature, you will find faith, hope and love. He that chooses evil refuses to look within himself, shuts his ears to the melody of his heart, as he blinds his eyes to the light of his soul. He does this because he finds it easier to live in desires. But underneath all life is the strong current that cannot be checked; the great waters are there in reality. Find them . . .
At the very base of your nature, you will find faith, hope and love – these three things. If you can make contact with your inner music, these three things will flower spontaneously within you: faith, hope and love. But these words have very different meanings. They don’t mean the ordinary things we mean by them.
When we say faith what we mean is belief. Belief is not faith. Belief means a forced thing. Doubt is hidden there, but you have wrapped yourself in a belief and pushed the doubt within.
For example, you say, “I believe in God.” What do you mean? Is there really no doubt? Doubt is there. The belief cannot cancel the doubt; it can only hide it. Really, because of the doubt you believe. You are afraid of the doubt. If you don’t believe, if you are doubtful, you will feel inconvenienced. Belief gives you convenience, comfort, solace, consolation. You feel at ease. But the belief is just a mental, intellectual facade. Behind it, the doubt is always lurking.
You will find doubt hidden within every belief. If you say, “I believe strongly,” that means you have very strong doubts behind it. Those who say, “I believe absolutely,” have absolute doubts within them. What is the need of belief? The need is because doubt is there and you feel inconvenienced by it.
That’s why so many people are theists and so few are atheists. But in reality, the world is full of atheists and to find a theist is very difficult; it is impossible. The whole thing is just false. People say that they believe in God because it seems difficult not to believe, inconvenient. Socially, formally, it is not good.
Not that they believe. They doubt, they know they doubt, but they deceive themselves. Their life remains untouched by their beliefs; their religion remains a Sunday religion. Their life is not touched at all. On Sunday they go to church and pray as a social formality, as good manners. Then, out of church, they are the same again. For six days they remain irreligious; for one day they become religious. Is it possible? Six days you remain ugly and one day you become beautiful? Six days you remain bad and one day you become good? Six days you remain evil and suddenly one day you become saintly? Is it possible?
It is impossible. The seventh day must be the false day; the six days are real. The seventh day is just a trick to deceive oneself and others. Belief is false. It is helpful, utilitarian, but untrue. Faith is totally different. Belief means doubt is hidden there; faith means doubt has disappeared. This is the difference.
Faith means the doubt has disappeared. Belief means the doubt is there and you have created a belief against it You doubt whether God exists or not but you say, “I believe,” because your wife is ill and if you don’t believe, who knows? God may be there. Or your job is in danger of being lost. Who knows? God may help. And if you don’t believe, then he will not help. Utilitarian; it has some utility for you. But doubt is there.
Faith means doubt has disappeared. It is the absence of doubt. But it can disappear only when you have known something within; when belief has not been given to you, knowing has arisen in you. When you have come to know, to realize, then faith arises.
And hope. This hope is not that of desire. This hope doesn’t mean hope for the future. It is not in any way concerned with the future. This hope means simply a hopeful attitude about everything. About everything. An optimistic view, a hopeful attitude. Looking at the golden side of things. Whatsoever happens you remain hopeful; you are not depressed.
Depression comes only if you look at the wrong side of things. Everything has two sides: the wrong side and the right side. You can look at the wrong side and then you will be depressed, or you can look at the right side, the golden side, and you will be happy. So, it depends.
The person who is hopeless always looks at what is wrong. The first thing he tries to find is what is wrong. If I tell him, “This man is a beautiful flute player,” he will first look at him and say, “No, I cannot believe that he can play the flute because he is a thief.” What is the concern? A man can be a thief and a good flute player. But he will deny the possibility. He will say, “No, he cannot be. He is a thief, a well-known thief. How can he be a good flute player?”
This is the hopeless mind. With a mind which is filled with hope, if I say, “This man is a thief,” he will say, “But how can he be a thief? He is such a good flute player?”
How do you look at things? With hope or with hopelessness? Ordinarily, unless you have touched the inner music, you will look at the world with a hopeless attitude. Then everything is wrong and whatsoever is done is wrong. And from everywhere, you will derive misery. You will become an expert at being miserable. Anything will help you to be miserable, anything.
When you touch this inner silence, this inner music, you become hopeful; you become hope. Whatever is, you see. You always touch the innermost core of it, the heart of it. And then, there is no depression.
And love. Ordinarily, love is a relationship. But when you touch the innermost being, love becomes your state not a relationship. It is not between you and someone else. Now it is that you have become love, you have become loving. It is not a relationship. Even if you are alone, sitting under a tree, you will be loving. Lonely, alone, with no one there, you will be loving.
It is just like a lonely flower that grows on an unknown path. No one passes there, but the flower goes on spreading its perfume. It is its state. It is not that when some king passes the flower will give its perfume. It is not that if some beggar passes the flower will not give its perfume. If a beggar passes, the flower gives its perfume. If a king passes, the flower gives its perfume. If no one passes, then too the flower goes on spreading its perfume. The perfume is the flower’s very state of being. It is not a relationship.
Our love is a relationship. And when love is a relationship, it creates misery. When love is a state of being, it creates bliss.
A Buddha is also in love, but he is not trying to love you. Simply because of the way he is, love spreads. Love becomes a perfume and goes to the far corners of the earth.
These three qualities will evolve: faith, hope and love. And if these three are there, you don’t need anything else. These three will lead you to the ultimate peak of life and existence.
. . . know that it is certainly within yourself. Look for it there, and once having heard it you will more readily recognize it around you.
If you can feel your inner music, inner truth, inner faith, inner love, inner hope, you will start recognizing it around you. The whole universe will change for you because you have changed. And whatsoever you feel within, now will be felt all around.
The world remains the same; but when you change, everything changes. With you, your universe becomes different. If you are rooted in the divine, the whole existence is rooted in the divine. If you are rooted in evil, the whole universe is a hell. It depends on you. It is you, magnified.
From The New Alchemy to Turn You On, Discourse #11
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