Intone a sound audibly, then less and less audibly as feeling deepens into this silent harmony.
Any sound will do, but if you love a certain sound it will be better, because if you love a certain sound then the sound is not just sound. When you intone the sound, then you are also intoning a hidden feeling with it, and by and by the sound will be dropped and only feeling will remain.
The sound has to be used as a passage toward feeling. Sound is mind and feeling is heart. Mind has to use a passage toward the heart. It is difficult to enter the heart directly. Because we have been missing it so much and for so many lives, we do not know from where to move to the heart. How to enter it? The door seems closed.
We go on talking about the heart, but that talk also is just in the mind. We say that we love through the heart, but this too is cerebral; in the head. Even the talk of the heart is in the head. And we do not know where the heart is. I do not mean the physical part of it, we know about that. But then physicians will say, medical science will say, that there is no possibility of love in it. It is just a pumping system. Nothing else is in it, and all else is just myth and poetry and dreaming.
But tantra knows a deep center hidden behind your physical heart. That deep center can only be reached through the mind because we are standing in the mind. We are there in the head, and any travel inwards has to begin from there. Mind is sound. If all sound stops, you won’t have any mind. In silence there is no mind — that is why there is so much insistence on silence. Silence is a no-mind state.
Ordinarily we say, “My mind is silent.” This is absurd, meaningless, because mind means absence of silence. So you cannot say that the mind is silent. If mind is, there cannot be any silence, and when silence is, there is no mind. So there is no such thing as a silent mind; there cannot be. It is just like saying that someone is alive-dead. It makes no sense. If he is dead, then he is not alive. If he is alive, then he is not dead. You cannot be alive-dead.
So there is nothing like a silent mind. When silence comes, mind is not there. Really, mind goes out and silence comes in; silence comes in and mind goes out. Both cannot be there. Mind is sound. If the sound is systematic you are sane, if the sound has gone chaotic you are insane; but in both the cases sound is there, and we exist at the point of the mind.
So how to drop from that point to the inner point of the heart? Use sound, intone sound. One sound will be helpful. If there are many sounds in the mind, it is difficult to leave them. If there is only one sound, it can be left easily. So first many sounds are to be sacrificed for one sound. That is the use of concentration.
Intone one sound. Go on intoning it, first audibly so that you can hear it, and then by and by, slowly, inaudibly. No one else can hear it then, but you can hear it inside. Make it more quiet, make it less and less audible, and then suddenly drop it. There will be silence, an explosion of silence — but feeling will be there. Now there will be no thought, but feeling will be there.
That is why it is good to use a sound, a name, a mantra, for which you have some feeling. If a Hindu uses “Ram,” he has some feeling for it. It is not simply a word for him, it is not only in his head. The vibrations reach to his heart also. He may not be aware, but it is deep-rooted in his bones, in his very blood. There has been a long tradition, a long conditioning, for many lives. If you have been attached to one sound continuously, it is very deep-rooted. Use it. It can be used.
A Christian can use “Ram,” but it will remain in the mind, it will not go deep. It is better that he uses “Jesus” or “Maria” or something else. It is very easy to be influenced by a new idea, but it is difficult to use it. You do not have any feeling for it. Even if you are convinced in the mind that this will be better, this conviction is on the surface.
One of my friends was living in Germany. He was there for thirty years and he completely forgot his mother tongue — he was a Maharashtrian and his mother tongue was Marathi. But he had forgotten it, for thirty years he was using German. German became just like his mother tongue. I say just like because no other tongue can become your mother tongue. There is no possibility because the mother tongue remains deep down inside of you. He consciously forgot it, and he was not able to speak or understand it.
Then he fell ill, and he was so ill that his whole family had to go there to see him. He was unconscious, but sometimes consciousness would come. Whenever he would become conscious he would speak German and whenever he would become unconscious he would mutter in Marathi. Consciously he couldn’t understand anything of Marathi; unconsciously he couldn’t understand anything of German.
Deep in the unconscious Marathi remained; it was the mother tongue. And you cannot replace the mother tongue. You can put other things over and above it, you can overimpose other things, but you cannot replace it. Deep down, it will remain.
So if you have a feeling for a certain sound, it is better to use it. Do not use an intellectual sound, it will be of no help because the sound has to be used to make a passage from the mind to the heart. So use some sound for which you have a deep love, a certain feeling.
If a Mohammedan uses “Ram,” it is very difficult, the word means nothing to him. That is why the two oldest religions never believe in conversion — Hinduism and Judaism. They are the two oldest religions, the two original religions, all other religions are just offshoots of these two. Christianity and Islam are offshoots of the Jewish tradition; Buddhism, Jainism, Sikhism are offshoots of Hinduism. These two original religions never believed in conversion, and the reason was this: that you can convert a man intellectually, but you cannot convert a man from his heart. You can convert a Hindu into a Christian, you can convert a Christian into a Hindu, but the conversion will remain of the mind.
Deep down a converted Hindu remains a Hindu. He may go to a church and he may pray to Mary or to Jesus, but his prayer remains of the head. You cannot change the unconscious. And if you hypnotize him, you will find he is a Hindu. If you hypnotize him and let him reveal his unconscious, you will find he is a Hindu.
Hindus and Jews never believed in conversion because of this basic fact. You cannot change a man’s religion because you cannot change his heart and unconscious feelings. And if you try, then you disturb him, because you give him something which will remain on the surface and you divide him. Then he becomes a split personality. Deep down he is a Hindu; on the surface he is a Christian. He will use Christian sounds, mantras, which will not go deep, and he cannot use Hindu sounds which can go deep. You have disturbed his life.
So find a certain sound for which you have some feeling. Even your own name may be helpful. If you do not have any feeling for anything else, then your own name will be helpful. There are many cases on record… One very famous mystic, Bukkh, used his own name, because he said, “I do not believe in any God. I do not know about him, I do not know what his name is. There are names I have heard, but there is no proof that they are his name. And I am in search of myself, so why not use my own name?” So he would use his own name, and just by using his own name he would drop down into silence.
If you do not have any love for anything else, use your own name. But it is very difficult because you are so condemning toward yourself that you do not have any feeling, you do not have any respect toward yourself. Others may be respectful toward you, but you are not respectful toward yourself.
So the first thing is to find any sound that will be helpful: for example, your lover’s name, your beloved’s name. If you love a flower, then “rose” will do, anything — any sound that you feel good using, uttering, listening to, from which you feel a certain well — being coming to you. If you cannot find one, then there are some suggestions from traditional sources. “Aum” can be used, “Amen” can be used, “Maria” can be used, “Ram” can be used, or Buddha’s name, or Mahavir’s name, or any name that you have a love for. But a feeling must be there. That is why the Master’s name can be helpful, if you have the feeling. But feeling is essential!
INTONE A SOUND AUDIBLY, THEN LESS AND LESS AUDIBLY AS FEELING DEEPENS INTO THIS SILENT HARMONY. And go on reducing the sound. Intone it more slowly, more inaudibly so that even you have to make an effort to hear it inside. Go on dropping, go on dropping, and you will feel the change. The more sound will drop, the more you will be filled with feeling. When sound disappears, only feeling remains. This feeling cannot be named. It is a love, a deep love, but not toward anyone — this is the difference.
When you use a sound or a word, the love is attached to a label. You say, “Ram, Ram, Ram…” You have a deep feeling for this word, but the feeling is addressed to “Ram,” narrowed down to “Ram.” When you go on reducing the “Ram,” a moment will come when “Ram” disappears, the sound disappears. Now only the feeling remains, the feeling of love — not toward Ram, it is now not addressed. There is simply a feeling of love — not toward anyone, not even toward; there is simply a feeling of love, as if you are in an ocean of love.
When it is not addressed, then it is of the heart. When it is addressed, it is of the head. Love toward someone is through the head; simple love is of the heart. And when love is simple, unaddressed, it becomes prayer. If it is addressed, it is not yet prayer; you are just on the way. That is why I say if you are a Christian you cannot start as a Hindu, you should start as a Christian. If you are a Mohammedan you cannot start as a Christian, you should start as a Mohammedan. But the deeper you go, the less you will be a Mohammedan or a Christian or a Hindu.
Only the start will be Hindu, Mohammedan or Christian. The more you will proceed toward the heart, as the sound will be less and less and feeling more and more, you will be less a Hindu, less a Mohammedan. When the sound disappears, you will simply be a human being — not Hindu, not Mohammedan, not Christian.
It is like the difference between ‘sects’ and ‘religion’. Religion is one, sects are many. Sects help you to begin. If you think that they are the end, then you are finished. They are just the beginning. You have to leave them and go beyond, because the beginning is not the end. In the end there is religion; in the beginning there is just a sect. Use the sect to go toward religion; use the limited to go toward the unlimited; use the finite to go toward the infinite.
Any sound will do. Find your own sound. And when you intone it, you will feel whether you have a loving relationship with it, because the heart will start vibrating. Your whole body will begin to be more sensitive. You will feel as if you are falling into something warm, just like your beloved’s lap; something warm begins enveloping you. And this is a physical feeling also, not simply a mental feeling. If you intone a sound which you love, you will feel a certain warmth around you, inside you. Then the world is not a cold world, it is warm.
If you have gone to a Hindu temple, then you must have heard of the GARBHAGRIHA — the womb house. The innermost center of the temple is known as GARBHA — the womb. You might not have observed why it is called the womb. If you intone the sound of the temple — and every temple has its own sound, its own mantra, its own ISHTA DEVATA, its own deity, and the related mantra of the deity — if you intone that sound, the same warmth as there is in the womb of the mother is created. That is why the garbha, the womb of the temple, is made just similar to the womb of the mother: round-shaped, almost closed, with only one opening.
When Christians came for the first time to India and discovered Hindu temples, they felt that these temples were really unhygienic — not ventilated at all, with only one little door. But the womb is with only one door and not ventilated at all. That is why the temple was made only with one door, just like a womb, and if you intone that sound, that womb becomes alive. And also it is called the garbha because you can get a new birth there, you can become a new man.
If you intone a sound that you love, that you have feeling for, you will create a sound-womb around you. So it is good not to practice this method under the open sky. You are very weak, you cannot fill the whole sky with your sound. It is better to choose a small room, and if the room is such that it vibrates your sound it is good, it will help you. And if you can choose the same place every day, it will be very good. It becomes charged. If the same sound is repeated every day, every atom, the very space becomes a milieu.
That is why followers of other religions are not allowed in the temples. In Mecca, no one can enter if he is not a Mohammedan, and this is good. Nothing is wrong in it, it is because Mecca belongs to a particular science. One who is not a Mohammedan goes there with a sound which will be disturbing to the whole milieu. If a Mohammedan is not allowed into a Hindu temple, there is no insult in it. And all those social reformers who do not know anything about temples, religion and esoteric science, they go on giving slogans, nonsense slogans, and they are disturbing everything.
A Hindu temple is for Hindus because a Hindu temple is a particular place — a created place. For millennia they have been working on it to make it alive, and anyone can disturb it. That disturbance is very dangerous. A temple is not a public place. It is for a particular purpose and for particular people; it is not for visitors. That is why visitors were not allowed in the old days. Now they are allowed because we do not know what we are doing. A visitor should not be allowed. It is not a place to see, to go to for sightseeing. It is a created space filled with particular vibrations.
If it is a Ram temple and you were born in a family where Ram’s name has been sacred, loved, then when you enter an alive space which is always filled with Ram’s name, even if you do not want to chant, even if you are not using the Ram mantra, you will start chanting. The space all around will press you. Those vibrations all around will hit you, and you will start chanting from deep down. So use a place — a temple is good.
These methods are temple methods. A temple is good, or a mosque or a church. Your own house is not good for these methods, because with so many sounds you have a chaotic space around you and you are not so strong that just by your sound you can change the space. So it is better to go to a certain place which belongs to a certain sound, and then use it. And it is good to go to the same place every day.
By and by you will become powerful. By and by you will drop down from the mind to the heart. Then you can do this method anywhere and the whole cosmos becomes your temple. Then there is no problem. But in the beginning it is good to choose the place, and if you can even choose the time, exactly the same time every day, it is good because then the temple waits for you. Right at that exact time, the temple waits for you. It is more receptive; it is happy that you have come. And I mean physically; this is not a symbolic thing, but a physical one.
It is just as if you take your meals every day at a particular time. At that particular time your whole body feels the hunger. The body has its own inner clock, it feels the hunger exactly at that time. If you go to sleep every day at a particular time, your whole body gets ready at that particular period. If you change every day your sleeping time and your food time, you are disturbing your body.
Now they say your age will be affected by it. If you go on daily changing your body routine, then if you were going to be alive for eighty years you will be alive only for seventy years. Ten years will be lost. And if you go regularly with the body clock, then if you were going to live for eighty years you will live for ninety very easily. Ten years can be added.
Exactly like this, everything all around you has its own clock, and the world moves in cosmic time. If you enter the temple at exactly the same time every day, the temple is ready for you and you are ready for the temple. These two readinesses meet, and the results are magnified a thousandfold.
Or you can create a small corner in your house. But then do not use that corner for any other purpose, because every purpose has its own vibrations. If you use that corner for a business purpose or you play cards there, that space becomes confused. And now these confusions can even be recorded on mechanical devices; it can be known if the space is confused.
If you can create a corner in your house, a small temple, it is very good. If you can afford a small temple, that is the first thing to be tried. But do not use it for any other purpose. Let it be absolutely private for you, and results will come very soon then.