18. Look lovingly at some object. do not go to another object. here in the middle of the object — the blessing.
I should repeat it: Look lovingly at some object. do not go to another . Do not move to another object. here in the middle of the object — the blessing.
Look lovingly at some object…. lovingly is the key. Have you ever looked lovingly at any object? You may say yes because you do not know what it means to look lovingly at an object. You may have looked lustfully at an object — that is another thing. That is totally different, diametrically opposite. So first, the difference; try to feel the difference.
A beautiful face, a beautiful body — you look at it, and you feel that you are looking at it lovingly. But why are you looking at it? Do you want to get something out of it? Then it is lust, not love. Do you want to exploit it? Then it is lust, not love. Then really, you are thinking of how to use this body, how to possess it, how to make this body an instrument for your happiness.
Lust means how to use something for your happiness; love means your happiness is not at all concerned. Really, lust means how to get something out of it and love means how to give something. They are diametrically opposite.
If you see a beautiful face and you feel love toward the face, the immediate feeling in your consciousness will be how to do something to make this face happy, how to do something to make this man or this woman happy. The concern is not with yourself, the concern is with the other.
In love the other is important; in lust you are important. In lust you are thinking how to make the other your instrument; in love you are thinking how to become an instrument yourself. In lust you are going to sacrifice the other; in love you are going to sacrifice yourself. Love means giving; lust means getting. Love is a surrender; lust is an aggression.
What you say is meaningless. Even in lust you talk in terms of love. Your language is not very meaningful, so do not be deceived. Look within, and then you will come to understand that you have not once in your life looked lovingly toward someone or some object.
The second distinction to be made: this sutra says, Look lovingly at some object. Really, even if you look lovingly at something material, insentient, the object will become a person. If you look lovingly at it, your love is the key to transform anything into a person. If you look lovingly at a tree, the tree becomes a person.
Just the other day I was talking with Vivek, a close disciple, and I told her that when we move to the new ashram we will name every tree, because every tree is a person. Have you ever heard of anyone naming a tree? No one names a tree because no one feels love for it. If the case were otherwise, a tree would become a person. Then it is not just one in a crowd, it becomes unique.
You name dogs and cats. When you name a dog and you call it Tiger or something else, the dog becomes a person. Then it is not just one dog amongst other dogs, it has a personality; you have created a person. Whenever you look lovingly at something, it becomes a person.
And the contrary is also true. Whenever you look with lustful eyes toward a person, the person becomes an object, a thing. That is why lustful eyes are repulsive — because no one likes to become a thing. When you look at your wife with lustful eyes — or at any other woman, or man, with lustful eyes — the other feels hurt. What are you doing really? You are changing a person, a living person, into a dead instrument. You are thinking of how to “use,” and the person is killed.
That is why lustful eyes are repulsive, ugly. When you look at someone with love, the other is raised. He becomes unique. Suddenly he becomes a person. A person cannot be replaced; a thing can be replaced. A `thing’ means that which is replaceable; a `person’ means that which cannot be replaced: there is no possibility of replacing him or her. A person is unique; a thing is not unique.
Love makes anything unique. That is why without love you never feel like a person. Unless someone loves you deeply, you never feel that you have any uniqueness. You are just one in a crowd — just a number, a datum. You can be changed.
For example, if you are a clerk in an office or a teacher in a school or a professor in a university, your professor-hood is replaceable. Another professor will replace you; he can replace you at any moment because you are just used there as a professor. You have a functional meaning and significance.
If you are a clerk, someone else is easily able to do the work. The work will not wait for you. If you die this moment, the next moment someone will replace you and the mechanism will continue. You were just a figure — another figure will do. You were just a utility.
But then someone falls in love with this clerk or this professor. Suddenly the clerk is no more a clerk; he has become a unique person. If he dies, then the beloved cannot replace him. He is irreplaceable. Then the whole world may go on in the same way, but the one who was in love cannot be the same. This uniqueness, this being a person, happens through love.
This sutra says, Look lovingly at some object. It makes no distinction between an object and a person. There is no need, because when you look lovingly anything will become a person. The very look changes, transforms.
You may or may not have observed what happens when you drive a particular car, say a Fiat. There are thousands and thousands and thousands of Fiats exactly similar, but your car, if you are in love with it, becomes unique — a person. It cannot be replaced; a relationship is created. Now you feel this car as a person. If something goes wrong… a slight sound, and you feel it. And cars are very temperamental. You know the temper of your car — when it feels good and when it feels bad. The car becomes, by and by, a person.
Why? If there is a love relationship, anything becomes a person. If there is a lust relationship, then a person will become a thing. And this is one of the most inhuman acts man can do — to make someone a thing.
Look lovingly at some object… So what is one to do? When you look lovingly, what are you to do? The first thing: forget yourself. Forget yourself completely! Look at a flower and forget yourself completely. Let the flower be; you become completely absent. Feel the flower, and a deep love will flow from your consciousness toward the flower. And let your consciousness be filled with only one thought — how you can help this flower to flower more, to become more beautiful, to become more blissful. What can you do?
It is not meaningful whether you can do or not; that is not relevant. The feeling of what you can do — this pain, this deep ache over what you can do to make this flower more beautiful, more alive, more flowering — is meaningful. Let this thought reverberate into your whole being. Let every fiber of your body and mind feel it. You will be transfixed in an ecstasy, and the flower will become a person.
Do not go to another object… You cannot go. If you are in a love relationship, you cannot go. If you love someone in this group, then you forget the whole crowd; only one face remains. Really, you do not see anyone else, you see only one face. All the others are there, but they are subliminal — just on the periphery of your consciousness. They are NOT. They are just shadows; only one face remains. If you love someone then only that face remains, so you cannot move.
Do not go to another object, remain with one. Remain with a rose flower or remain with a beloved’s face. Remain there loving, flowing, with just one heart, with the feeling of, “What can I do to make the loved one happier, blissful?”
Here in the middle of the object — the blessing.. And when this is the case you are absent, not concerned with yourself at all, not selfish, not thinking in terms of your pleasure, your gratification. You have forgotten yourself completely, and you are just thinking in terms of the other. The other has become the center of your love; your consciousness is flowing toward the other. With deep compassion, with a deep feeling of love, you are thinking, “What can I do to make the loved one blissful?” In this state, suddenly, Here in the middle of the object — the blessing.. Suddenly, as a by-product, the blessing comes to you. Suddenly you become centered.
This looks paradoxical because this sutra says to forget yourself completely, not to be self-centered, to move to the other completely. Buddha is reported to have said continuously that whenever you are praying, pray for others — never for yourself. Otherwise the prayer is just useless.
One man came to Buddha and he said, “I accept your teaching, but only one thing is very difficult to accept. You say that whenever we do prayer we are not to think about ourselves, we are not to ask anything about ourselves. We have to say, `Whatsoever may be the result of my prayer, let that result be distributed to all. If blessing happens, let it be distributed to all.'”
The man said, “This is okay, but can I make only one exception? Not to my immediate neighbor — he is my enemy. Let this blessing be distributed to all except to my immediate neighbor.”
The mind is self-centered, so Buddha said, “Your prayer is useless. Nothing will come out of it unless you are ready to give all, to distribute all, and then all will be yours.”
In love you are to forget yourself. It looks paradoxical: then when and how will the centering happen? By being totally concerned with the other, with the other’s happiness, when you forget yourself completely and only the other remains there, suddenly you are filled with bliss — the blessing.
Why? Because when you are not concerned with yourself you become vacant, empty; the inner space is created. When your mind is totally concerned with the other, you become mindless within. Then there are no thoughts inside. And then this thought — “How can I be helpful? How can I create more bliss? How can the other be more happy?” — cannot continue any more, because really, there is nothing you can do. This thought becomes a stop. There is nothing you can do. What can you do? If you think you can do, you are still thinking in terms of yourself — ego.
With the love object one becomes totally helpless — remember this. Whenever you love someone you feel totally helpless. That is the agony of love: one cannot feel what he can do. He wants to do everything, he wants to give the whole universe to the lover or the beloved — but what can he do? If you think that you can do this or that, you are still not in a love relationship. Love is very helpless, absolutely helpless, and that helplessness is the beauty, because in that helplessness you are surrendered.
Love someone and you will feel helpless; hate someone and you can do something. Love someone and you are absolutely helpless — because what can you do? Whatsoever you can do seems insignificant, meaningless; it is never enough. Nothing can be done. And when one feels that nothing can be done, one feels that one is helpless. When one wants to do everything and feels nothing can be done, mind stops. In this helplessness surrender happens. You are empty. That is why love becomes a deep meditation.
Really, if you love someone, no other meditation is needed. But because no one loves, one hundred and twelve methods are needed — and even they may not be enough.
Someone was here the other day. He was telling me, “It gives me much hope. I have heard for the first time from you that there are one hundred and twelve methods. It gives me much hope, but somewhere a depression also comes into the mind: only one hundred and twelve methods? And if these one hundred and twelve methods don’t work for me, then is there no one hundred and thirteenth?”
And he is right. He is right! If these one hundred and twelve methods do not work for you, then there is no go. So as he suggests, a depression also follows hope. But really, methods are needed because the basic method is missing. If you can love, no method is needed.
Love itself is the greatest method, but love is difficult — in a way impossible. Love means putting yourself out from your consciousness, and in the same place, where your ego has been in existence, putting someone else. Replacing yourself by someone else means love — as if now you are not and only the other is.
Jean Paul Sartre says that the other is the hell, and he is right. He is right because the other creates only hell for you. But he is wrong also because if the other can be hell, the other can he heaven. If you live through lust, the other is a hell because then you are trying to kill that person. You are trying to make that person a thing. Then that person will also react and will try to make you a thing, and that creates hell.
So every husband and every wife, they are creating hell for each other because each one is trying to possess the other. Possession is possible only with things, never with persons. You can only be possessed by a person; you can never possess a person. A thing can be possessed, but you try to possess persons. Through that effort persons become things. If I make you into a thing, you will react. Then I am your enemy. Then you will try to make a thing out of me — that creates hell.
You are sitting in your room alone, and then suddenly you become aware that someone is peeping through the keyhole. Observe minutely what happens. Have you felt any change? And why do you feel angry about this peeping Tom? He is not doing anything to you — just peeping. Why do you feel angry? He has changed you into a thing. He is observing; he has made you into a thing, into an object. That gives you an uneasiness.
And the same will happen to him if you come near the keyhole and look through it. The other will become shattered, shocked. He was a subject just a moment before: he was the observer and you were the observed. Now suddenly he has been caught. He has been observed observing you, and now he has become a thing.
When someone is observing you, suddenly you feel your freedom has been disturbed, destroyed. That is why, unless you are in love with someone, you cannot stare. That stare becomes ugly and violent — unless you are in love. If you are in love then a stare is a beautiful thing, because your stare is not changing the other into a thing. Then you can look directly into the eyes; then you can go deep into the eyes of the other. You are not changing him into a thing. Rather, through your love your look is making him a person. That is why only the stares of lovers are beautiful; otherwise stares are ugly.
Psychologists say there is a time limit. And you all know, observe and you will come to know, what the time limit is for how long you can stare into someone’s eyes, if he is a stranger. There is a time limit. One moment more, and the other will become angry. Just a passing look in public can be pardoned because it seems as if you were just seeing, not looking.
A look is a deep thing. If I just see you when passing, no relationship is created. Or I am passing and you look at me, just while passing — no offense is meant so it is okay. But if you suddenly stand and look at me, you become an observer. Then your look will disturb me and I will feel insulted: “What are you doing? I am a person, not a thing. This is not the way to look.”
Because of this, clothes have become so meaningful. Only when you love someone can you be easily naked, because the moment you are naked your whole body becomes an object. Someone can look at your whole body, and if he is not in love with you his eyes will turn your whole body, your whole being, into an object. But when you are in love with someone you can be naked without feeling that you are naked. Rather, you would like to be naked, because you would like this transforming love to transform your whole body into a person.
Whenever you are turning someone into a thing, that act is immoral. But if you are filled with love, then in that love-filled moment with any object this phenomenon, this blessing, is possible. It happens.
In the middle of the object — the blessing.. Suddenly you have forgotten yourself — the other was there. Then when the right moment comes, when you are no longer present, absolutely absent, the other will also become absent. And between the two the blessing happens. That is what lovers feel. That blessing is also because of an unknown, unconscious meditation.
When two lovers are there, by and by they both become absent. A pure existence remains — without any egos, without any conflict… just a communion. In that communion one feels blissful. It is wrongly inferred that the other has given that bliss to you. That bliss has come because unknowingly you have fallen into a deep meditative technique.
You can do it consciously — and when you do it consciously it goes deeper, because then you are not obsessed with the object. This is happening every day. If you love someone, you feel blissful not because of him or her, but because of love. And why because of love? Because this phenomenon happens — this sutra happens.
But then you become obsessed. Then you think that because of A, because of A’s proximity, nearness, because of A’s love this blessing happens. Then you think, “I must possess A, because without A being present I may not be able to get this blessing again.” You become jealous. If someone else possesses A, then he will be blissful and you will feel miserable, so you want to take away all possibilities of A being possessed by anyone else. A should be possessed only by you, because you have glimpsed a different world through him. Then the moment you try to possess, you will destroy the whole beauty and the whole phenomenon.
When the lover is possessed, love is gone. Then the lover is just a thing. You can use it, but the blessing will never come again, because that blessing was coming when the other was a person. The other was made, created: you created the person in the other, and the other created the person in you. No one was an object. Both were subjectivities meeting — two persons meeting, not one person and one thing.
But the moment you possess, this will become impossible. And mind will try to possess because mind thinks in terms of greed: “One day bliss has happened, so it must happen to me every day. So I must possess.” But the bliss happens because there is no possession. And the bliss happens not because of the other, really, but because of you. Remember this, the bliss happens because of you. Because you are so absorbed in the other, the bliss happens.
It can happen with a rose flower, it can happen with a rock, it can happen with the trees, it can happen with anything. Once you know the situation in which it happens, it can happen anywhere. If you know that you are not, and with a deep love your consciousness has moved to the other — to the trees, to the sky, to the stars, to anyone; when your total consciousness is addressed to the other it leaves you, it moves away from you — in that absence of the self is the blessing.