First let us understand the questions, what Devi is asking.
Oh Shiva, what is your reality? Why this question? You can also ask this question, but it will not carry the same meaning. So try to understand why Devi asks, Oh Shiva, what is your reality? Devi is in deep love. When you are in deep love, for the first time you encounter the inner reality. Then Shiva is not the form, then Shiva is not the body. When you are in love, the body of the beloved falls away, disappears. The form is no more and the formless is revealed. You are facing an abyss. That is why we are so afraid of love. We can face a body, we can face a face, we can face a form, but we are afraid of facing an abyss.
If you love someone, if you really love, his body is bound to disappear. In some moments of climax, of peak, the form will dissolve, and through the beloved you will enter the formless. That is why we are afraid – it is falling into a bottomless abyss. So this question is not just a simple curiosity: Oh Shiva, what is your reality?
Devi must have fallen in love with the form. Things start that way. She must have loved this man as a man, and now when the love has come of age, when the love has flowered, this man has disappeared. He has become formless. Now he is to be found nowhere. Oh Shiva, what is your reality? It is a question asked in a very intense love moment. And when questions are raised, they become different according to the mind in which they are asked.
So create the situation, the milieu of the question in your mind. Devi must be at a loss – Shiva has disappeared. When love reaches its peak, the lover disappears. Why does this happen? This happens because really, everyone is formless. You are not a body. You move as a body, you live as a body, but you are not a body. When we see someone from the outside, he is a body. Love penetrates within. Then we are not seeing the person from the outside. Love can see a person as the person can see himself from within. Then the form disappears.
A Zen monk, Rinzai, attained his enlightenment, and the first thing he asked was, “Where is my body? Where has my body gone?” And he began to search. He called his disciples and said, “Go and find out where my body is. I have lost my body.”
He had entered the formless. You are also a formless existence, but you know yourself not directly, but from others’ eyes. You know through the mirror. Sometime, while looking in the mirror, close your eyes and then think, meditate: if there was no mirror, how could you have known your face? If there was no mirror, there would have been no face. You do not have a face; mirrors give you faces. Think of a world where there are no mirrors. You are alone – no mirror at all, not even others’ eyes working as mirrors. You are alone on a lonely island; nothing can mirror you. Then will you have any face? Or will you have any body? You cannot have one. You do not have one at all. We know ourselves only through others, and the others can only know the outer form. That is why we become identified with it. […]
Devi asks Shiva, Oh Shiva, what is your reality? – who are you? The form has disappeared; hence the question. In love you enter the other as himself. It is not you answering. You become one, and for the first time you know an abyss – a formless presence.
That is why for centuries together, centuries and centuries, we were not making any sculptures, any pictures of Shiva. We were only making Shivalina – the symbol. The Shivalinga is just a formless form. When you love someone, when you enter someone, he becomes just a luminous presence. The Shivalinga is just a luminous presence, just an aura of light.
That is why Devi asks, what is your reality?
What is this wonder-filled universe? We know the universe, but we never know it as wonder-filled. Children know, lovers know. Sometimes poets and madmen know. We do not know that the world is wonder-filled. Everything is just repetitive – no wonder, no poetry, just flat prose. It doesn’t create a song in you; it doesn’t create a dance in you; it doesn’t give birth to the poetry inside. The whole universe looks mechanical. Children look at it with wonder-filled eyes. When the eyes are wonder-filled, the universe is wonder-filled.
When you are in love, you again become like children. Jesus says, “Only those who are like children will enter my kingdom of God.” Why? Because if the universe is not a wonder, you cannot be religious. The universe can be explained – then your approach is scientific. The universe is either known or unknown, but that which is unknown can be known any day; it is not unknowable. The universe becomes unknowable, a mystery, only when your eyes are wonder-filled.
Devi says, what is this wonder-filled universe? Suddenly there is the jump from a personal question to a very impersonal one. She was asking, what is your reality? and then suddenly, what is this wonder-filled universe?
When form disappears, your beloved becomes the universe, the formless, the infinite. Suddenly Devi becomes aware that she is not asking a question about Shiva; she is asking a question about the whole universe. Now Shiva has become the whole universe. Now all the stars are moving in him, and the whole firmament and the whole space is surrounded by him. Now he is the great engulfing factor – “the great encompassing.” Karl Jaspers has defined God as “the great encompassing.”
When you enter into love, into a deep, intimate world of love, the person disappears, the form disappears, and the lover becomes just a door to the universe. Your curiosity can be a scientific one – then you have to approach through logic. Then you must not think of the formless. Then beware of the formless; then remain content with the form. Science is always concerned with the form. If anything formless is proposed to a scientific mind, he will cut it into form – unless it takes a form it is meaningless. First give it a form, a definite form; only then does the inquiry start.
In love, if there is form then there is no end to it. Dissolve the form! When things become formless, dizzy, without boundaries, everything entering another, the whole universe becoming a oneness, then only is it a wonder-filled universe.
What constitutes seed? Then Devi goes on. From the universe she goes on to ask, what is this wonder-filled universe? This formless, wonder-filled universe, from where does it come? From where does it originate? Or does it not originate? What is the seed?
Who centers the universal wheel? asks Devi. This wheel goes on moving and moving – this great change, this constant flux. But who centers this wheel? Where is the axis, the center, the unmoving center?
She doesn’t stop for any answer. She goes on asking as if she is not asking anyone, as if talking to herself.
What is this life beyond form pervading forms?
How may we enter it fully, above space and time, names and description?
Let my doubts be cleared. The emphasis is not on questions but on doubts: Let my doubts be cleared! This is very significant. If you are asking an intellectual question, you are asking for a definite answer so that your problem is solved. But Devi says, Let my doubts be cleared. She is not really asking about answers. She is asking for a transformation of her mind, because a doubting mind will remain a doubting mind whatsoever answers are given. Note it: a doubting mind will remain a doubting mind. Answers are irrelevant. If I give you one answer and you have a doubting mind, you will doubt it. If I give you another answer, you will doubt that also. You have a doubting mind. A doubting mind means you will put a question mark to anything.
So answers are useless. You ask me, “Who created the world?” and I tell you “A” created the world. Then you are bound to ask, “Who created ‘A’?” So, the real problem is not how to answer questions. The real problem is how to change the doubting mind, how to create a mind which is not doubting – or, which is trustful. So Devi says, let my doubts be cleared. […]
The doubting mind is the problem. Devi says, “Do not be concerned with my questions. I have asked so many things: What is your reality? What is this wonder-filled universe? What constitutes seed? Who centers the universal wheel? What is life beyond form? How can we enter it fully above time and space? But do not be concerned with my questions. Let my doubts be cleared. I ask these questions because they are in my mind. I ask them just to show you my mind, but do not pay much attention to them. Really, answers will not fulfill my need. My need is… let my doubts be cleared.”
But how can the doubts be cleared? Will any answer do? Is there any answer which will clear your doubts? Mind is the doubt. It is not that the mind doubts, mind is the doubt! Unless the mind dissolves, doubts cannot be cleared.
Shiva will answer. His answers are techniques – the oldest, most ancient techniques. But you can call them the latest also because nothing can be added to them. They are complete – one hundred and twelve techniques. They have taken in all the possibilities, all the ways of cleaning the mind, transcending the mind. Not a single method could be added to Shiva’s one hundred and twelve methods. And this book, Vigyana Bhairava Tantra, is five thousand years old. Nothing can be added; there is no possibility to add anything. It is exhaustive, complete. It is the most ancient and yet the latest, yet the newest. Old like old hills – the methods seem eternal – and they are new like a dewdrop before the sun, because they are so fresh.
These one hundred and twelve methods of meditation constitute the whole science of transforming mind. We will enter them one by one. We will try to comprehend first intellectually. But use your intellect only as an instrument, not as a master. Use it as an instrument to understand something, but do not go on creating barriers with it. When we will be talking about these techniques, just put aside your past knowledge, your knowing, whatsoever information you have collected. Put them aside – they are just dust gathered on the road.
Encounter these methods with a fresh mind – with alertness, of course, but not with argumentation.
From The Book of Secrets, Discourse #1
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