On joyously seeing a long absent friend, permeate this joy
Enter this joy and become one with it — any joy, any happiness. This is just an example: “On joyously seeing a long absent friend…” Suddenly you see a friend you have not seen for many, many days or many, many years.
A sudden joy grips you. But your attention will be on the friend, not on your joy. Then you are missing something, and this joy will be momentary. Your attention is focused on the friend: you will start talking, remembering things, and you will miss this joy and this joy will go.
When you see a friend and suddenly feel a joy arising in your heart, concentrate on this joy. Feel it and become it, and meet the friend while being aware and filled with your joy. Let the friend be just on the periphery, and you remain centered in your feeling of happiness.
This can be done in many other situations. The sun is rising, and suddenly you feel something rising within you. Then forget the sun; let it remain on the periphery. You be centered in your own feeling of rising energy. The moment you look at it, it will spread. It will become your whole body, your whole being. And do not just be an observer of it; merge into it. There are very few moments when you feel joy, happiness, bliss, but you go on missing them because you become object-centered.
Whenever there is joy, you feel that it is coming from without. You have met a friend: of course, it appears that the joy is coming from your friend, from seeing him. That is not the actual case. The joy is always within you. The friend has just become a situation. The friend has helped it to come out, has helped you to see that it is there. And this is not only with joy, but with everything: with anger, with sadness, with misery, with happiness, with everything, it is so. Others are only situations in which things that are hidden in you are expressed. They are not causes; they are not causing something in you. Whatsoever is happening, is happening TO YOU. It has always been there; it is only that meeting with this friend has become a situation in which whatsoever was hidden has come out in the open — has come out. From the hidden sources it has become apparent, manifest. Whenever this happens remain centered in the inner feeling, and then you will have a different attitude about everything in life.
Even with negative emotions, do this. When you are angry, do not be centered on the person who has aroused it. Let him be on the periphery. You just become anger. Feel anger in its totality; allow it to happen within. Don’t rationalize; don’t say that this man has created it. Do not condemn the man. He has just become the situation. And feel grateful towards him that he has helped something which was hidden to come into the open. He has hit you somewhere, and a wound was there hidden. Now you know it, so become the wound.
With negative or positive, with any emotion, use this, and there will be a great change in you. If the emotion is negative, you will be freed of it by being aware that it is within you. If the emotion is positive, you will become the emotion itself. If it is joy, you will become joy. If it is anger, the anger will dissolve.
And this is the difference between negative and positive emotions: if you become aware of a certain emotion, and by your becoming aware the emotion dissolves, it is negative. If by your becoming aware of a certain emotion you then become the emotion, if the emotion then spreads and becomes your being, it is positive. Awareness works differently in both cases. If it is a poisonous emotion, you are relieved of it through awareness. If it is good, blissful, ecstatic, you become one with it. Awareness deepens it.
So to me this is the criterion: if something is deepened by your awareness, it is something good. If something is dissolved through awareness, it is something bad. That which cannot remain in awareness is sin and that which grows in awareness is virtue. Virtue and sin are not social concepts, they are inner realizations.
Use your awareness. It is just as if there is darkness and you bring in light: the darkness will be no more there. Just by bringing light in, the darkness is no more there, because, really, it was not. It was negative, just an absence of light. But many things will become manifest which are there. Just by bringing in light, these shelves, these books, these walls, will not disappear. In darkness they were not; you could not see them. If you bring light in, darkness will be no more there, but that which is real will be revealed. Through awareness all that is negative like darkness will dissolve — hatred, anger, sadness, violence. Then love, joy, ecstasy, will, for the first time, become revealed to you. So, “ON JOYOUSLY SEEING A LONG ABSENT FRIEND, PERMEATE THIS JOY.”