Dhyana means “I am in meditation”—not even meditating. If you come even closer, then “I am meditation”—that is the meaning of dhyana. So when in China they could not find any word, they borrowed the word, the Buddhist word, jhana. Buddha used jhana; it is a Pali transformation of dhyana.

If they write in the common people’s language they could not charge you as much as they are charging, because you will say, “This prescription—you are charging me twenty dollars for this prescription?” And the chemist, the druggist, could not charge much money either, because people would know that they could get the same thing from the market for just a dollar, and you are charging fifty dollars. But in Latin and Greek, you don’t know what it is. If they write “onion” then you will say, “Are you joking?” But if it is written in Greek and Latin, you don’t know what it is; only the doctor or the chemist knows. And their way of writing is also important. It has to be written in such a way that you cannot read what it is. If you can read it, perhaps you can consult a dictionary and find out what it means. It has to be quite unreadable so you cannot figure it out.

Buddha revolted against Sanskrit and used Pali. In Pali, dhyana is jhana. Jhana reached China and became ch’an. They had no word of their own so they took the word jhana—but in each language the pronunciation is bound to change; it became ch’an. When it reached Japan, it became Zen; but it is the same word, dhyana. And I am using the word “meditation” in the sense of dhyana—so it is not something you meditate upon.

The third man thought, “Now, the only possibility is what I have said.” He said, “I can see that you are meditating.”
The monk said, “Nonsense! Meditation is not some activity. One does not meditate, one is meditation. To tell you the truth, so that all you fellows don’t get confused, I am simply doing nothing. Standing here, doing nothing—is it objectionable?” They said, “No, it is not objectionable, it just does not make sense to us—standing here, doing nothing.”
“But,” he said, “this is what meditation is.”

Sitting and doing nothing—not with your body, not with your mind. Once you start doing something either you go into contemplation or you go into concentration, or you go into action, but you move away from your center. When you are not doing anything at all—bodily, mentally, on no level—when all activity has ceased and you simply are, just being, that’s what meditation is. You cannot do it, you cannot practice it; you have only to understand it.

Whenever you can find time for just being, drop all doing. Thinking is also doing, concentration is also doing, contemplation is also doing. Even if for a single moment you are not doing anything and you are just at your center, utterly relaxed—that is meditation. And once you have got the knack of it, you can remain in that state as long as you want; finally you can remain in that state for twenty-four hours a day.

Once you have become aware of the way your being can remain undisturbed, then slowly you can start doing things, keeping alert that your being is not stirred. That is the second part of meditation. First, learning how just to be, and then learning little actions: cleaning the floor, taking a shower, but keeping yourself centered. Then you can do complicated things.

So meditation is not against action. It is not that you have to escape from life. It simply teaches you a new way of life: You become the center of the cyclone. Your life goes on, it goes on really more intensely—with more joy, with more clarity, more vision, more creativity—yet you are aloof, just a watcher on the hills, simply seeing all that is happening around you.
You are not the doer, you are the watcher.

That’s the whole secret of meditation—that you become the watcher. Doing continues on its own level, there is no problem: chopping wood, drawing water from the well. You can do all small and big things; only one thing is not allowed and that is, your centering should not be lost. That awareness, that watchfulness, should remain absolutely unclouded, undisturbed.

The longer the tunnel, the smaller will be the other end. The greater the scientist the longer the tunnel; he has to focus, and focusing is always a tense affair.

Concentration is not natural to the mind. Mind is a vagabond. It enjoys moving from one thing to another. It is always excited by the new. In concentration, mind is almost imprisoned.

Meditation, according to me, has all the space, the whole of existence available. You are the watcher, you can watch the whole scene. There is no effort to concentrate on anything, there is no effort to contemplate about anything. You are not doing all these things, you are simply there watching, just aware. It is a knack. It is not a science, it is not an art, it is not a craft; it is a knack.

Somebody asked Henry Ford—because he had given a statement: “My success is through nothing but catching the right opportunity at the right moment. People either think of opportunities that are in the future, you cannot catch hold of them, or they think of opportunities that have passed. When they are gone and only dust is left on the road, then they become aware that the opportunity has passed.”
He said, “Not ready—you have to be just jumping. One never knows when it comes. When it comes, just jump upon it!”
What Henry Ford said has tremendous meaning. He said, “You simply keep on jumping. You don’t wait; don’t bother whether an opportunity is there or not: Just go on jumping. One never knows when it comes.

No special posture is needed, no special time is needed. There are people who think there are special times. No, not for meditation; any time is the right time—you just have to be relaxed and playful.
Any moment where you can feel relaxed, nontense, play with the idea of meditation the way I have explained to you. Just be silent, centered in yourself, and someday it is going to happen. Just enjoy yourself with the idea and play with the idea as many times as you can. If nothing happens—I am not promising you anything—if nothing happens that’s perfectly good, you enjoyed yourself. You played with the idea, you gave it a chance.

Go on giving it a chance. Henry Ford said, “Go on jumping and when the chance, the opportunity comes, jump upon it.” I say just the reverse. You just go on giving a chance to meditation, and when the right moment comes and you are really relaxed and open, it jumps upon you.
And once meditation jumps upon you it never leaves.

Dhyana means “I am in meditation”—not even meditating. If you come even closer, then “I am meditation”—that is the meaning of dhyana. So when in China they could not find any word, they borrowed the word, the Buddhist word, jhana. Buddha used jhana; it is a Pali transformation of dhyana.

If they write in the common people’s language they could not charge you as much as they are charging, because you will say, “This prescription—you are charging me twenty dollars for this prescription?” And the chemist, the druggist, could not charge much money either, because people would know that they could get the same thing from the market for just a dollar, and you are charging fifty dollars. But in Latin and Greek, you don’t know what it is. If they write “onion” then you will say, “Are you joking?” But if it is written in Greek and Latin, you don’t know what it is; only the doctor or the chemist knows. And their way of writing is also important. It has to be written in such a way that you cannot read what it is. If you can read it, perhaps you can consult a dictionary and find out what it means. It has to be quite unreadable so you cannot figure it out.

Buddha revolted against Sanskrit and used Pali. In Pali, dhyana is jhana. Jhana reached China and became ch’an. They had no word of their own so they took the word jhana—but in each language the pronunciation is bound to change; it became ch’an. When it reached Japan, it became Zen; but it is the same word, dhyana. And I am using the word “meditation” in the sense of dhyana—so it is not something you meditate upon.

The third man thought, “Now, the only possibility is what I have said.” He said, “I can see that you are meditating.”
The monk said, “Nonsense! Meditation is not some activity. One does not meditate, one is meditation. To tell you the truth, so that all you fellows don’t get confused, I am simply doing nothing. Standing here, doing nothing—is it objectionable?” They said, “No, it is not objectionable, it just does not make sense to us—standing here, doing nothing.”
“But,” he said, “this is what meditation is.”

Sitting and doing nothing—not with your body, not with your mind. Once you start doing something either you go into contemplation or you go into concentration, or you go into action, but you move away from your center. When you are not doing anything at all—bodily, mentally, on no level—when all activity has ceased and you simply are, just being, that’s what meditation is. You cannot do it, you cannot practice it; you have only to understand it.

Whenever you can find time for just being, drop all doing. Thinking is also doing, concentration is also doing, contemplation is also doing. Even if for a single moment you are not doing anything and you are just at your center, utterly relaxed—that is meditation. And once you have got the knack of it, you can remain in that state as long as you want; finally you can remain in that state for twenty-four hours a day.

Once you have become aware of the way your being can remain undisturbed, then slowly you can start doing things, keeping alert that your being is not stirred. That is the second part of meditation. First, learning how just to be, and then learning little actions: cleaning the floor, taking a shower, but keeping yourself centered. Then you can do complicated things.

So meditation is not against action. It is not that you have to escape from life. It simply teaches you a new way of life: You become the center of the cyclone. Your life goes on, it goes on really more intensely—with more joy, with more clarity, more vision, more creativity—yet you are aloof, just a watcher on the hills, simply seeing all that is happening around you.
You are not the doer, you are the watcher.

That’s the whole secret of meditation—that you become the watcher. Doing continues on its own level, there is no problem: chopping wood, drawing water from the well. You can do all small and big things; only one thing is not allowed and that is, your centering should not be lost. That awareness, that watchfulness, should remain absolutely unclouded, undisturbed.

The longer the tunnel, the smaller will be the other end. The greater the scientist the longer the tunnel; he has to focus, and focusing is always a tense affair.

Concentration is not natural to the mind. Mind is a vagabond. It enjoys moving from one thing to another. It is always excited by the new. In concentration, mind is almost imprisoned.

Meditation, according to me, has all the space, the whole of existence available. You are the watcher, you can watch the whole scene. There is no effort to concentrate on anything, there is no effort to contemplate about anything. You are not doing all these things, you are simply there watching, just aware. It is a knack. It is not a science, it is not an art, it is not a craft; it is a knack.

Somebody asked Henry Ford—because he had given a statement: “My success is through nothing but catching the right opportunity at the right moment. People either think of opportunities that are in the future, you cannot catch hold of them, or they think of opportunities that have passed. When they are gone and only dust is left on the road, then they become aware that the opportunity has passed.”
He said, “Not ready—you have to be just jumping. One never knows when it comes. When it comes, just jump upon it!”
What Henry Ford said has tremendous meaning. He said, “You simply keep on jumping. You don’t wait; don’t bother whether an opportunity is there or not: Just go on jumping. One never knows when it comes.

No special posture is needed, no special time is needed. There are people who think there are special times. No, not for meditation; any time is the right time—you just have to be relaxed and playful.
Any moment where you can feel relaxed, nontense, play with the idea of meditation the way I have explained to you. Just be silent, centered in yourself, and someday it is going to happen. Just enjoy yourself with the idea and play with the idea as many times as you can. If nothing happens—I am not promising you anything—if nothing happens that’s perfectly good, you enjoyed yourself. You played with the idea, you gave it a chance.

Go on giving it a chance. Henry Ford said, “Go on jumping and when the chance, the opportunity comes, jump upon it.” I say just the reverse. You just go on giving a chance to meditation, and when the right moment comes and you are really relaxed and open, it jumps upon you.
And once meditation jumps upon you it never leaves.

19Dhyana means “I am in meditation”—not even meditating. If you come even closer, then “I am meditation”—that is the meaning of dhyana. So when in China they could not find any word, they borrowed the word, the Buddhist word, jhana. Buddha used jhana; it is a Pali transformation of dhyana.

If they write in the common people’s language they could not charge you as much as they are charging, because you will say, “This prescription—you are charging me twenty dollars for this prescription?” And the chemist, the druggist, could not charge much money either, because people would know that they could get the same thing from the market for just a dollar, and you are charging fifty dollars. But in Latin and Greek, you don’t know what it is. If they write “onion” then you will say, “Are you joking?” But if it is written in Greek and Latin, you don’t know what it is; only the doctor or the chemist knows. And their way of writing is also important. It has to be written in such a way that you cannot read what it is. If you can read it, perhaps you can consult a dictionary and find out what it means. It has to be quite unreadable so you cannot figure it out.

Buddha revolted against Sanskrit and used Pali. In Pali, dhyana is jhana. Jhana reached China and became ch’an. They had no word of their own so they took the word jhana—but in each language the pronunciation is bound to change; it became ch’an. When it reached Japan, it became Zen; but it is the same word, dhyana. And I am using the word “meditation” in the sense of dhyana—so it is not something you meditate upon.

The third man thought, “Now, the only possibility is what I have said.” He said, “I can see that you are meditating.”
The monk said, “Nonsense! Meditation is not some activity. One does not meditate, one is meditation. To tell you the truth, so that all you fellows don’t get confused, I am simply doing nothing. Standing here, doing nothing—is it objectionable?” They said, “No, it is not objectionable, it just does not make sense to us—standing here, doing nothing.”
“But,” he said, “this is what meditation is.”

Sitting and doing nothing—not with your body, not with your mind. Once you start doing something either you go into contemplation or you go into concentration, or you go into action, but you move away from your center. When you are not doing anything at all—bodily, mentally, on no level—when all activity has ceased and you simply are, just being, that’s what meditation is. You cannot do it, you cannot practice it; you have only to understand it.

Whenever you can find time for just being, drop all doing. Thinking is also doing, concentration is also doing, contemplation is also doing. Even if for a single moment you are not doing anything and you are just at your center, utterly relaxed—that is meditation. And once you have got the knack of it, you can remain in that state as long as you want; finally you can remain in that state for twenty-four hours a day.

Once you have become aware of the way your being can remain undisturbed, then slowly you can start doing things, keeping alert that your being is not stirred. That is the second part of meditation. First, learning how just to be, and then learning little actions: cleaning the floor, taking a shower, but keeping yourself centered. Then you can do complicated things.

So meditation is not against action. It is not that you have to escape from life. It simply teaches you a new way of life: You become the center of the cyclone. Your life goes on, it goes on really more intensely—with more joy, with more clarity, more vision, more creativity—yet you are aloof, just a watcher on the hills, simply seeing all that is happening around you.
You are not the doer, you are the watcher.

That’s the whole secret of meditation—that you become the watcher. Doing continues on its own level, there is no problem: chopping wood, drawing water from the well. You can do all small and big things; only one thing is not allowed and that is, your centering should not be lost. That awareness, that watchfulness, should remain absolutely unclouded, undisturbed.

The longer the tunnel, the smaller will be the other end. The greater the scientist the longer the tunnel; he has to focus, and focusing is always a tense affair.

Concentration is not natural to the mind. Mind is a vagabond. It enjoys moving from one thing to another. It is always excited by the new. In concentration, mind is almost imprisoned.

Meditation, according to me, has all the space, the whole of existence available. You are the watcher, you can watch the whole scene. There is no effort to concentrate on anything, there is no effort to contemplate about anything. You are not doing all these things, you are simply there watching, just aware. It is a knack. It is not a science, it is not an art, it is not a craft; it is a knack.

Somebody asked Henry Ford—because he had given a statement: “My success is through nothing but catching the right opportunity at the right moment. People either think of opportunities that are in the future, you cannot catch hold of them, or they think of opportunities that have passed. When they are gone and only dust is left on the road, then they become aware that the opportunity has passed.”
He said, “Not ready—you have to be just jumping. One never knows when it comes. When it comes, just jump upon it!”
What Henry Ford said has tremendous meaning. He said, “You simply keep on jumping. You don’t wait; don’t bother whether an opportunity is there or not: Just go on jumping. One never knows when it comes.

No special posture is needed, no special time is needed. There are people who think there are special times. No, not for meditation; any time is the right time—you just have to be relaxed and playful.
Any moment where you can feel relaxed, nontense, play with the idea of meditation the way I have explained to you. Just be silent, centered in yourself, and someday it is going to happen. Just enjoy yourself with the idea and play with the idea as many times as you can. If nothing happens—I am not promising you anything—if nothing happens that’s perfectly good, you enjoyed yourself. You played with the idea, you gave it a chance.

Go on giving it a chance. Henry Ford said, “Go on jumping and when the chance, the opportunity comes, jump upon it.” I say just the reverse. You just go on giving a chance to meditation, and when the right moment comes and you are really relaxed and open, it jumps upon you.
And once meditation jumps upon you it never leaves.

2. Meditation Is Your Nature

All that the mind can do cannot be meditation—it is something beyond the mind, the mind is absolutely helpless there. The mind cannot penetrate meditation; where mind ends, meditation begins.

This has to be remembered because in our life, whatsoever we do, we do through the mind; whatsoever we achieve, we achieve through the mind. Then, when we turn inward, we again start thinking in terms of techniques, methods, doings, because the whole of life’s experience shows us that everything can be done by the mind.

meditation is not an achievement—it is already the case, it is your nature. It has not to be achieved; it has only to be recognized, it has only to be remembered. It is there waiting for you—just a turning in, and it is available. You have been carrying it always and always.

Meditation is your intrinsic nature—it is you, it is your being, it has nothing to do with your doings. You cannot have it, you cannot not have it; it cannot be possessed. It is not a thing. It is you. It is your being.

Meditation is a state of clarity, not a state of mind. Mind is confusion. Mind is never clear. It cannot be. Thoughts create clouds around you.
Meditation is clarity, absolute clarity of vision. You cannot think about it. You have to drop thinking. When I say, “You have to drop thinking,” don’t conclude in a hurry. Because I have to use language, I say, “Drop thinking”—but if you start dropping, you will miss, because again you will reduce it to a doing.

“Drop thinking” simply means: Don’t do anything. Sit. Let thoughts settle themselves. Let mind drop of its own accord. You just sit gazing at the wall, in a silent corner, not doing anything at all. Relaxed, loose, with no effort. Not going anywhere. As if you are falling asleep awake—you are awake, and you are relaxing but the whole body is falling into sleep. You remain alert inside, but the whole body moves into deep relaxation.

If somebody has passed through a stream and the dead leaves have surfaced and the mud has arisen, just patience is needed.
the mud will start settling because it cannot hang there forever. After a while, suddenly you will become aware—the stream is crystal-clear again.

And one day, meditation happens. Not that you bring it to you; it comes to you. And when it comes, you immediately recognize it; it has been always there but you were not looking in the right direction. The treasure has been with you, but you were occupied somewhere else: in thoughts, in desires, in a thousand and one things. You were not interested in the only one thing … and that was your own being.

the more you understand the mechanism of the mind, the more the possibility is that you will not interfere. The more you understand how the mind functions, the more the possibility is that you will be able to sit in zazen; that you will be able just to sit, sit and do nothing; that you will be able to allow meditation to happen. It is a happening.

The first thing about the mind is that it is a constant chattering. Whether you are talking or not, it goes on doing some inner talk; whether you are awake or asleep, the inner talk continues as an undercurrent. You may be doing some work but the inner talk continues; you are driving, or you are digging a hole in the garden, but the inner talk continues. The mind is constantly talking.

If the inner talk can drop even for a single moment, you will be able to have a glimpse of no-mind. That’s what meditation is all about. The state of no-mind is the right state. It is your state.

In fact, the interval is continuously happening—just a little alertness is needed. Between two thoughts there is an interval; between two words, there is a gap. Otherwise the words will run into each other; otherwise thoughts will overlap each other. They don’t overlap.
Ordinarily you look at the words, you don’t look at the gaps.
Change your attention.

When you see the old face you cannot see the young face, though you know it is hidden somewhere. And when you see the young face, the old face cannot be seen; it disappears although you know it is there. You cannot see both together. They are contradictory.

The mind can see only one thing at a time, and the opposite is not possible at the same time. When you see the opposite, the first disappears. The mind goes on looking at the words so it cannot see the silences that come after each word. Change the focus. Just sitting silently, start looking in the gaps. Not with effort, no need to strain. Relaxed, just easy—in a playful mood, just as fun. No need to be religious about it, otherwise you become serious, and once you become serious it is very difficult to move from words to no-words. It is very easy if you remain loose, flowing, nonserious, playful—as if it is just a game.

Millions of people miss meditation because meditation has taken on a wrong connotation. It looks very serious, looks gloomy, has something of the church in it, looks as if it is only for people who are dead, or almost dead, who are gloomy, serious, have long faces, who have lost festivity, fun, playfulness, celebration. These are the qualities of meditation. A really meditative person is playful: Life is fun for him, life is a leela, a play. He enjoys it tremendously. He is not serious. He is relaxed.

Sit silently, relaxed, loose, and just allow your attention to flow toward the gaps. Slip from the edges of words into the intervals. Let intervals become more prominent and allow words to fade away. It is just as if you are looking at a chalkboard, and I put a small white dot on it: You can see either the dot, then the chalkboard goes far away, or you can see the chalkboard, then the dot becomes secondary, a shadow phenomenon. You can go on shifting your attention between the figure and the background.

Words are figures; silence is the background. Words come and go; silence remains. When you were born you were born as a silence—just intervals and intervals, gaps and gaps. Infinite emptiness you came with, unbounded emptiness you brought with you in life—then you started collecting words.

That’s why if you go back in your memory, if you try to remember, you cannot go past the age of four. Because before the age of four you were almost empty; words started collecting in your memory after the age of four. Memory can function only where words function, emptiness leaves no trace on you. That’s why when you go back and you try to remember, you can remember, at the most, the age of four. Or, if you were very intelligent, then your remembering can go back to the age of three. But there comes a point where suddenly there is no memory. Up to that time you were an emptiness—pure, virgin, uncorrupted by words. You were pure sky. The day you die, again your words will drop and scatter; you will move into another world or into another life again with your emptiness.
Emptiness is your self.

Mind means words; self means silence. Mind is nothing but all the words that you have accumulated; silence is that which has always been with you, it is not an accumulation. That is the meaning of self. It is your intrinsic quality. On the background of silence you go on accumulating words, and the words in total are known as the mind. Silence is meditation. It is a question of changing the gestalt, shifting the attention from words into silence—which is always there.

Each word is like a precipice: You can take a jump into the valley of silence. From each word you can slip into silence … that is the use of a mantra. Mantra means repeating a single word again and again and again. When you repeat a single word again and again and again, you get bored with that word because the novelty is lost. You get fed up with that word, you want to get rid of that word. Boredom helps. It helps you to get rid of the word—now you can slip more easily into silence.

repeating the same thing again and again and again, either you fall asleep or you jump into silence.
most people who chant mantras fall into sleep. Mothers know it well. When a child is not falling asleep, they do a mantra—they call it a lullaby. They repeat just two or three words in a monotonous tone and the child starts feeling sleepy. Go on repeating and the child gets bored, and he cannot escape, he cannot go anywhere, so the only escape is into sleep.

One of the great disciples of Gurdjieff, P. D. Ouspensky, was dying. The doctors told him to rest but he would not—instead he continued walking the whole night. They thought he had gone crazy. He was dying, his energy was disappearing—what was he doing? This was the time to rest; he would die sooner if he went on walking. But he would not stop.
Somebody asked, “What are you doing?”
He said, “I would like to die alert, awake. I don’t want to die asleep—otherwise I will miss the beauty of death.” And he died walking.

If you go to Bodhgaya, where Gautama Buddha attained enlightenment, near the bodhi tree you will find a small path. On that path Buddha walked continuously. For one hour he would meditate under the tree, and then for one hour he would walk.
When his disciples asked, “Why?” he would say, “Because if I sit too much under the tree, then sleepiness starts coming.”

The mantra is to create boredom, the mantra is to create a fed-up-ness so that you can jump into the abyss. If you move into sleep the abyss is missed.

All Buddhist meditations alternate. You do them sitting—but when you feel drowsiness setting in immediately you get up and start doing them walking. Then the moment you see that the sleepiness has disappeared, sit again, do the meditation again. If you go on doing this, a moment comes when suddenly you slip out of the words, just like a snake that slips out of its old skin. And it happens very naturally. There is no effort to it.

So the first thing to remember about mind is: It is a constant chattering. That chattering keeps it alive, that chattering is a food for it, without that chattering the mind cannot continue. So drop out of the clutches of the mind—that is, drop out of inner chattering.

You can do this by forcing yourself, but then again you miss. You can force yourself not to talk inside, just as you can force yourself not to talk outside—you can keep a forced silence. In the beginning it is difficult, but you can go on insisting and you can force the mind not to talk. It is possible. If you go to the Himalayas, you will find many people who have attained to it, but you will find dullness on their faces, not intelligence. The mind has not been transcended, it has been simply dulled. They have not moved into alive silence, they have simply forced the mind and controlled it. It is as if a child has been forced to sit in the corner and not to move. Watch him. He feels restless, but he goes on controlling himself, afraid. He represses his energy otherwise he will be punished.

If this goes on for as long as it does—in schools children are sitting for five or six hours—by and by they are dulled, their intelligence is lost. Every child is born intelligent and almost 99 percent of people die stupid. The whole education dulls the mind—and you can do it yourself, also.

Paralysis is not meditation.

Remember, meditation will bring you more and more intelligence, infinite intelligence, a radiant intelligence. Meditation will make you more alive and sensitive; your life will become richer.

Always remember that if you are moving in the right direction you will go on flowering. Much fragrance will come out of you and you will be creative. And you will be sensitive to life, to love, and to everything that existence makes available to you.

Have a very penetrating eye inside your mind—see what its motivations are. When you do something, immediately look for the motivation, because if you miss the motivation, the mind goes on befooling you.
The mind goes on befooling you twenty-four hours a day and you cooperate with it. Then in the end you are in misery, you land in hell. Watch every moment for the right motivation. If you can find the right motivation, the mind will become more and more incapable of deceiving you. And the further away you are from deception, the more you will be capable of moving beyond mind, the more you will become a master.
Look, watch for the unconscious motivation. The mind goes on bullying you and bossing you because you are not capable of seeing its real motivations. Once a person becomes capable of seeing real motivations, meditation is very close … because then the mind no longer has a grip on you.

The mind is a mechanism. It has no intelligence. The mind is a biocomputer. How can it have any intelligence? It has skill, but it has no intelligence; it has a functional utility, but it has no awareness. It is a robot; it works well but don’t listen to it too much because then you will lose your inner intelligence. Then it is as if you are asking a machine to guide you, lead you. You are asking a machine which has nothing original in it—cannot have. Not a single thought in the mind is ever original, it is always a repetition. Watch. Whenever mind says something, see that it is again putting you into a routine. Try to do something new and the mind will have less a grip on you.

People who are in some way creative are always easily transformed into meditators, and people who are uncreative in their lives are the most difficult. If you live a repetitive life the mind has too much control over you—you cannot move away from it, you are afraid. Do something new every day. Don’t listen to the old routine. In fact, if the mind says something, tell it, “This we have been doing always. Now let us do something else.”
the way you always walk—just small changes; the way you always talk, small changes. And you will find that the mind is losing its grip on you, you are becoming a little freer.

Each moment you are new, reborn, the consciousness is never old. The consciousness is always the son and the mind is always the father. The mind is never new and the consciousness is never old—and the mind goes on advising the son. The father will create the same pattern in the son, then the son will repeat the same thing.

The mind goes on talking like an economist. An efficiency expert; it goes on saying, “This is easier to do. Why do it the hard way? This is the way of least resistance.”
Remember, whenever you have two things, two alternatives, choose the new one, choose the harder, choose the one in which more awareness will be needed. At the cost of efficiency always choose awareness, and you will create the situation in which meditation will become possible.

Be less efficient but more creative. Let that be the motive. Don’t be bothered too much about utilitarian ends. Rather, constantly remember that you are not here in life to become a commodity; you are not here to become a utility. That is below your dignity. You are not here just to become more and more efficient—you are here to become more and more alive; you are here to become more and more intelligent; you are here to become more and more happy, ecstatically happy. But that is totally different from the ways of the mind.

The ambitious mind cannot meditate because the basic foundation of meditation is to be nonambitious. Ambition means the effort to control others.
Every revolution fails because once a certain group of politicians comes into power, it has to use the same methods. The mind is never for the new, it is always for the old. If you want to control others, you will not be able to meditate.

The mind lives in a sort of sleep; it lives in a sort of unconscious state. You become conscious only very rarely. If your life is in tremendous danger you become conscious; otherwise you are not conscious. The mind goes on moving, sleepy. Stand by the side of the road and watch people and you will see shadows of dreams on their faces.

Eat, but while eating don’t do anything—just eat. Each bite should be taken with deep alertness, chew it with alertness. Don’t allow yourself to run all over the world. Be here, now. Whenever you catch your mind going somewhere else.… It is always going somewhere else; it never wants to be here. Because if the mind is here it is no longer needed; right in the present there is no need for the mind—consciousness is enough. The mind is needed only there, somewhere else in the future, in the past, but never here. Whenever you become alert that the mind has gone somewhere else—you are in Paris and the mind has gone to Philadelphia—immediately become alert. Give yourself a jerk. Come back home. Come to the point where you are. Eating, eat; walking, walk; don’t allow this mind to go all over the world.

3. Meditation and the Failure of Success

The West has succeeded materially in becoming rich, and now it is too weary, too tired. The journey has taken all its soul. The journey has finished the Western man. Outwardly all is available, but the contact with the inner is lost. Now everything that man needs is there, but the man is no longer there. Possessions are there, but the master has disappeared. A great imbalance has happened. Richness is there, but man is not feeling rich at all; man is feeling, on the contrary, very impoverished, very poor.

Meditation is nothing but getting your roots again in your inner world, your interiority. Hence the West is becoming very much interested in meditation, and very much interested in the Eastern treasures.

Why did Buddha become discontented, why did he start a search for meditation? Because he was rich. He lived in affluence; he lived in all that was possible, all the comforts, all the material gadgets. Suddenly he became aware. And he was not very old when he became aware; he was only twenty-nine when he became aware that there is a dark hole inside. Light is outside; hence it shows your inner darkness. Just a little dirt on a white shirt and it shows. That’s what happened.

Poverty is worshipped in India. That is one of the reasons why I am condemned, because I am not in favor of any kind of poverty. Poverty is not spirituality; poverty is the cause of the disappearance of spirituality.
I would like the whole world to become as affluent as possible. The more people are affluent, the more they will become spiritual. They will have to; they will not be able to avoid it. Only then does real contentment arise.

There is a tremendous similarity between the Western psychology of the contemporary man and the psychology of Buddhism. The West is in the same state as Buddha was when he became interested in meditation. It was a rich man’s search.

India is losing contact with its own religions. It cannot afford to understand Buddha—it is a poor country. You will be surprised, poor Indians are being converted to Christianity. Rich Americans are being converted to Buddhism.

Man has to be given both kinds of richnesses. Why not both? Science has developed the technology to make you outwardly rich. Religion has developed the technology to make you inwardly rich: That is Yoga, Tantra, Taoism, Sufism, Hassidism—these are the technologies of the inner.

The East is living almost in a kind of unconsciousness. It is too hungry to meditate, too poor to pray. Its only interest is in bread, shelter, clothing; so when the Christian missionary comes and opens a hospital or opens a school, the Indians are very much impressed.
When I start teaching about meditation they are not interested; not only not interested, they are against it: “What kind of spirituality is this?” And I understand—they need bread.

The East and the West have lived apart too long; there is no need anymore.
We have come to that critical moment where this whole Earth can become one —should become one—because it can survive only if it becomes one.

4. Healing the Split Between Body and Soul

the split between body and soul. It has created a schizophrenic humanity. As I see it, schizophrenia is not a disease that happens once in a while to a person. The whole of humanity up to now has been schizophrenic. It is very rarely, only once in a while, that a man like Jesus, or Buddha, or Mahavira, or Socrates, or Pythagoras, or Lao Tzu, has been able to escape from this schizophrenic pattern of our living.

Man is a miniature universe; if you divide the universe the man is divided, if you divide the man the universe is divided. And I believe in the undivided, organic unity of existence.
To me there is no distinction between the spiritual and the material. You can be spiritual and function on the materialistic plane—and your functioning will be more joyous, your functioning will be more aesthetic, more sensitive. Your functioning on the material plane will not be tense, will not be full of anguish and anxiety.

Once a man came to Buddha and asked, “The world is in such a distress, people are in so much misery—how can you manage to sit silently and so joyously?”
Buddha said, “If somebody is suffering from fever, has the doctor also to lie down by his side and suffer? the healthier he is, the more help is possible through him.”

5. Meditation Is Life, Not Livelihood

Whether you are a warrior or a businessman does not make any difference: One has chosen one way to earn his livelihood, the other has chosen something else.
Meditation is life, not livelihood. It has nothing to do with what you do; it has everything to do with what you are.

Meditation is a jump: from the head to the heart, and ultimately from the heart to the being.

People who are not intelligent learn how to be clever. People who are intelligent need not be clever; they are innocent, they need not be cunning. They function out of a state of not-knowing.

When you are home with your wife, with your children, don’t be a businessman. That is ugly: That means your being is becoming colored by your doing. Doing is a superficial thing. The being should remain transcendental to your doing and you should always be capable of putting your doing aside and entering into the world of your being. That’s what meditation is all about.