Question related to this Sutra 5
Why do so many persons on the path of Yoga adopt an attitude of fight, struggle, over-concern with keeping strict rules, and warrior-like ways? Is this necessary in order to really be a Yogi?
It is absolutely unnecessary – not only unnecessary, it creates all types of hindrances on the path of yoga. The warrior-like attitude is the greatest hindrance possible because there is no one to fight with. Inside, you are alone. If you start fighting, you are splitting yourself.
And this is the greatest disease: to be divided, to become schizophrenic. And the whole struggle is useless because it is not going to lead anywhere. No one can win. On both the sides you are. So at the most you can play; you can play a game of hide and seek. Sometimes part A wins, sometimes part B wins; again part A, again part B. In this way you can move. Sometimes that which you call good wins. But fighting with the bad, winning over the bad, the good part has become exhausted and the bad part has gathered energy. So sooner or later the bad part will come up, and this can go on infinitely.
But why does this warrior-like attitude happen? Why with most people fighting starts? The moment they think of transformation, they start fighting. Why? Because you know only one method of winning, and that is to fight.
In the world outside, in the outside world, there is one way to be victorious and that is fight – fight and destroy the other. This is the only way in the outside world to be victorious. And you have lived in this outside world for millions and millions of years and you have been fighting – sometimes getting defeated if you don’t fight well, sometimes getting victorious if you fight well. So it has become a built-in program that “Fight strongly.” There is only one way to be victorious and that is a hard fight.
When you move within, you carry the same program because you are acquainted only with this. And in the world within, just the reverse is the case: fight and you will be defeated-because there is no one to fight with. In the inner world, let-go is the way to be victorious, surrender is the way to be victorious, allowing the inner nature to flow, not fighting, is the way to be victorious. Letting the river flow, not pushing it, is the way as far as the inner world is concerned. This is just the reverse. But you are acquainted only with the outside world, so this is bound to be so in the beginning. Whoever moves within, he will carry the same weapons, the same attitudes, the same fighting, the same defense.
Machiavelli is for the outside world; Lao Tzu, Patanjali and Buddha are for the inside world. And they teach different things. Machiavelli says attack is the best defense: “Don’t wait. Don’t wait for the other to attack, because then you are already on the losing side. Already you have lost, because the other has started. He has already gained, so it is always better to start. Don’t wait to defend; always be the aggressor. Before somebody else attacks you, you attack him and fight with as much cunningness as possible, with as much dishonesty as possible. Be dishonest, be cunning and be aggressive. Deceive, because that is the only way.” These are the means that Machiavelli suggests. And Machiavelli is an honest man; that’s why he suggests exactly whatsoever Is needed.
But if you ask Lao Tzu, Patanjali or Buddha, they are talking of a different type of victory – the inner victory. There, cunningness won’t do, deceiving won’t do, fighting won’t do, aggression won’t do, because whom are you going to deceive? Whom you are going to defeat? You alone are there. In the outside world you are never alone. The others are there; they are the enemies. In the inside world you alone are there. There is no other. There is no enemy, no friend. This is a totally new situation for you. You will carry the old weapons, but those old weapons will become the cause of your defeat. When you change the world from without to within, leave all that you have learned from without. That is not going to help.
Somebody asked Ramana Maharshi, “What should I learn to become silent, to know myself?” Ramana Maharshi is reported to have said that, “For reaching to the inner self you need not learn anything. You need unlearning, learning won’t help. It helps to move without. Unlearning will help.”
Whatsoever you have learned, unlearn it, forget it, drop it. Move inside innocently, childlike – not cunningness and cleverness, but childlike trust and innocence; not thinking in terms that someone is going to attack you. There is no one, so don’t feel insecure and don’t make any arrangements for defense. Remain vulnerable, receptive, open. That’s what shraddha, trust, means.
Doubt is needed outside because the other is there. He may be thinking to deceive you, so you have to doubt and be skeptical. Inside, no doubt, no skepticism is needed. Nobody is there to deceive you. You can remain there just as you are.
That’s why everybody carries this warrior-like attitude, but it is not needed. It is a hindrance, the greatest hindrance. Drop it outside. You can make it a point to remember that whatsoever is needed outside will become a hindrance inside. Whatsoever, I say unconditionally. And just the reverse has to be tried.
If doubt helps outside in scientific research, then faith will help inside in religious inquiry. If aggressiveness helps outside in the world of power, prestige, others, then non-aggressiveness will help inside. If a cunning, calculating mind helps outside, then an innocent, non-calculating, childlike mind will help inside.
Remember this: whatsoever helps outside, just the reverse will do inside. So read Machiavelli’s PRINCE. That is the way for outside victory. And just make a reverse of Machiavelli’s PRINCE, and you can reach inside. Just make Machiavelli stand upside down, and he becomes Lao Tzu – just in shirshasan, in the headstand. Machiavelli standing on his head becomes Patanjali.
So read his PRINCE; it is beautiful – the clearest statement for the outside victory. And then read Lao Tzu’s TAO TEH CHING or Patanjali’s YOGA SUTRAS or Buddha’s DHAMMAPADA or Jesus’ SERMON ON THE MOUNT. They are just the contradictory, just the reverse, just the opposite.
Jesus says, “Blessed are those who are meek because they will inherit the earth” – meek, innocent, weak, not strong in any sense. “Blessed are the poor because they will enter the kingdom of my God.” And Jesus makes it clear, “poor in spirit”. They have nothing to claim. They cannot say, “I have got this.” They don’t possess anything – knowledge, wealth, power, prestige. They don’t possess anything, they are poor. They cannot claim that, “This is mine.”
We go on claiming, “This is mine, that is mine. The more I can claim, the more I feel, ‘I am.’” In the outside world, the greater the territory of your mind, the more you are. In the inner world, lesser the territory of mind, the greater you are. And when the territory disappears completely and you have become a zero, then – then you are the greatest. Then you are victorious. Then the victory happened.
Warrior-like attitudes – struggle, fight, over-concern with strict rules, regulations, calculations, planning – this mind is carried inside because you have learned it and you don’t know anything else. Hence, the necessity of a Master. Otherwise you will go on trying your ways which are absolutely absurd there.
Hence, the necessity of initiation. Initiation means somebody who can show you the path where you have never traveled, somebody who can give you a glimpse through him of a world, of a dimension, that is absolutely unknown to you. You are almost blind to it. You cannot see it because eyes can see only whatsoever they have learned to see.
If you are a tailor, then you don’t look at faces, you look at dresses. Faces don’t mean much; just looking at the dress you know what type of man is there. You know a language.
If you are a shoemaker, you need not even look at the dress; shoes will do. And a shoemaker can just go on looking on the street, and he knows who is passing, whether he is a great leader – just looking at the shoe – whether he is an artist, a Bohemian, a hippie, a rich man, whether he is cultured, educated, uneducated, a villager – who he is just by looking at the shoe because shoe gives all indications. He knows the language. Whether a man is winning in life, the shoe has a different shine. If he is defeated in life, the shoe is defeated. Then the shoe is sad, not cared for. And the shoemaker knows it. He need not look at your face. The shoe will tell everything that he wants to know.
Everything we learn and then we become fixed in it. Then that’s what we see. You have learned something, and you have wasted many lives in learning it. And it is now deep-rooted, imprinted. It has become part of your brain cells. So when you move within there is simply darkness, nothing, you cannot see anything. The whole world that you know has disappeared.
It is just like you know one language and suddenly you are transported to a land where no one understands your language and you cannot understand anybody’s language. And people are talking and chattering, and you feel simply that they are mad. It looks like they are talking gibberish, and it looks very noisy because you cannot understand. And they seem to be talking too loudly. If you can understand it, then the whole thing changes; you become part of it. Then it is not gibberish; it becomes meaningful.
When you enter within you know the language of the without. There is darkness within. Your eyes cannot see, your ears cannot hear, your hands cannot feel. Somebody is needed, somebody to initiate you, to take your hand in his hand and to move you onto this unknown path until you become acquainted, until you start feeling, until you become aware of some light, some meaning, some significance around you.
Initiation means looking through the inner world through someone else’s eyes. Without trust it is impossible because you won’t allow your hand to be taken, you won’t allow anybody to lead you into the unknown. And he cannot give you any guarantee. No guarantee will be of any use. Whatsoever he says, you have to take it on trust.
In the old days, when Patanjali was writing his sutras, trust was very easy, because in the outside world also, particularly in the East and especially in India, they had created an outside pattern of initiation. For example, trades, professions, belonged to families through heredity. A father will initiate the child into the profession, and a child naturally believes in his father. The father will take the child to the farm if he is a peasant and a farmer, and he will initiate him into his farming. Whatsoever trade, whatsoever business he is doing, he will initiate the child.
Quite the reverse was the case in the East in the past. If you were cunning it was impossible for you to succeed even in the outside world. Only innocence was accepted. Technique was not valued too much, but inner quality was valued too much.
Fight, struggle, aggressiveness are hindrances. Don’t carry them. When you move inwards, leave them on the door. If you carry them, you will miss the inner temple; you will never reach it. With those things you cannot move inwards.Tags: Greatest Hindrance Patanjali