FIVE OBSTACLES

Nature gives everybody energy that is creative. It becomes destruc­ tive only when it is obstructed, when no natural flow is allowed.

l. SELF-CONSCIOUSNESS

Consciousness is health, self- consciousness is disease.
Something foreign has entered into the river of consciousness — something alien - something that resists becoming part of the river.

Self-consciousness is a frozen state, blocked. It is like a dirty pool—going nowhere, just drying out, evaporating and dying. Of couxse, it stinks.

Consciousness has no idea of “I,” of ego. It has no idea of one's separation from existence.
It knows no boundaries—it is one with existence.
There is no conflict between the individual and the whole. One is simply flowing into the whole, and the whole is flowing into one.
It is like breathing: you breathe in, you breathe out—when you breathe in the whole enters you, when you breathe out you enter the whole. It is a constant flow, a constant sharing. The whole goes on giving to you and you go on giving to the whole. The balance is never lost.

But in a self-conscious man something has gone wrong. He takes in but he never gives out. He goes on accumulating and he has become incapable of sharing. He goes on making boundaries around himself so nobody can trespass. He goes on putting sign­ boards around his being: “No Trespassing Allowed.” By and by he becomes a grave, a dead being—because life is in sharing.

But ordinarily everybody is self-conscious. To be self-conscious is to be unconscious. This paradox has to be understood: to be self-conscious is to be unconscious and to be unselfconscious—or to be self-unconscious—is to become con­ scious.

You lose your tiny center and you attain to the center of existence itself. Suddenly you become infinite; suddenly you are no longer bound, you have no cage around your being, and infinite power starts flowing through you. You become a vehicle—clear, with no obstructions. You be­ come a flute, and Krishna can sing through you. You become just a passage, empty, nothing of your own—this is what I call surrender.

Self-consciousness is a nonsurrendering attitude—it is the at­ titude of conflict, fight, struggle. If you are fighting with existence you will be self-conscious and, of course, you will be defeated again and again and again.
Your frustration is certain, you are doomed from the very beginning because you cannot maintain this self against the universe. It is impossible, you cannot exist separately. You cannot be a monk.
A monk is one who is trying to be himself who is trying to define his boundaries and who is trying to exist separate from this total existence. His whole effort is egoistic. It is bound to fail; no monk can ever succeed.

You can succeed only with God, never against him. You can succeed only with the whole, never against it. So if you are frus­ trated, in deep misery, remember; you are creating that misery. And you are creating it by a subde trick: you are fighting against the whole.

People don’t like to do easy things. Before they can do them they want to make them hard, difficult. People enjoy doing hard things. Why? Because when you face a hard thing, your ego becomes subde, sharp; there is a challenge.

You may be perfectly comfortable as you are, but you go on accumulating money—that money is not for you, that money is for the ego.

If you are miserable, you and only you are responsible. Neither the past nor the social structure nor the economic system—nothing is going to help.

And the first, basic change happens when you start dropping this conflict with existence. “Drop the ego.”. drop the conflict, because ego is a by-product of your con­ flicting attitude.

People talk of conquering nature; how can you conquer nature? You are part of it. How can the part conquer the whole? See the foolishness of it, the stupidity.
You can be with the whole in harmony, or you can be in conflict with the whole in disharmony. Disharmony results in misery; har­ mony results in bliss. Harmony naturally results in a deep silence.joy, delight. Conflict results in anxiety, anguish, stress, tension.

The ego is nothing but all the tensions that you have created around yourself. And in the first place there is no need to create it— but why does man go on creating it? There must be some reason. Why does everybody go on creating the ego, the self?
The real self is unknown, And it is very difficult to live without a self, so we create a pseudoself, a substitute self.
The real self is so vast that you cannot define it, and the real self is so mysterious that you cannot pen­ etrate it to the very core. The real self is the self of the whole. It is not pos­ sible for human intellect to penetrate, to ponder, to contemplate it.

real roses is difficult; you can pur­ chase plastic roses. They will not de­ ceive you, but they will deceive the neighbors.
If somebody asks, "Who are you?" what do you answer? You say your name.
You came nameless; It is just a label. It has nothing to do with your being.
Or you answer your profession, your family tree.
This self is a pseudoself, a created, manufac­ tured self, homemade. And your own real self remains deep down hidden in mist and mystery.

Your self cannot be created by you, it cannot be manmade.
Your self have been brought with you, it is you, how can you create it?
This false self is not yours because you have created it; and your real self is not yours because it is still in God.

This false self that we go on carrying in our lives like a flag is always in danger of being damaged. It is very fragile, it is very weak. "My self may be destroyed"
It is manufactured, it is not organic.

If you know your real self you will never be afraid of death, there is no question, because the organic unity never dies.
Only mechanical uni­ ties are put together and die.
The organic unity has no beginning and no end.

you always need sup­ port from others—somebody to ap­ preciate you, somebody to clap, somebody to say how beautiful you are or how intelligent. You need somebody to say these things to you, like hypnotic suggestions. you depend on others.

What type of intelligence is this, which has to be certified by foolish people? What type of beauty is this, which has to be certified by ugly people?
We go on searching in the outside world to find some support for our ego.
So we have to support it from this side and from that, and continuous worry arises.

Try to make something perfect and it will remain imperfect.
Nature is perfect; effort is imperfect. So whenever you are doing something too much, you are destroying.

you have known this man talking so beautifully to his friends, to his wife, to his children. These are also people, the same people—why are you afraid? You have become self-conscious. Now the ego is at stake, you are trying to per­ form something.

whenever you try to perform something, you are seeking food for the ego. Whenever you are natural and let things happen they are perfect.
Self-consciousness becomes a weakness. A person who is un­ selfconscious is strong, but his strength has nothing to do with him­ self—it comes from the beyond. When you are self-conscious you are in trouble.

then you are not seeking opinions. Then you are not worried what others say about you—it is irrelevant! In fact, nobody ever says anything about you—whenever people say something about you, they are saying it about themselves.

But you become very shaky, because you are still clinging to a false center. That false center depends on others, so you are always looking to what people are saying about you.
You are always trying to be respectable, you are always trying to decorate your ego.
Rather than being disturbed by what others say, you should start looking inside yourself To know the real self is not so cheap.