January 24, 2011


There is a beauty of the body and there is a beauty of the soul. The beauty of the body is ordinary, momentary, today it is there, and tomorrow it may not be there. And the beauty of the body is more in the eyes of the considered than in the object of the beauty itself, because the same person may be beholder beautiful by one, may be thought ugly by another. But the beauty of the soul is something inner. It is not in the eyes of the onlooker, because it cannot be seen, it is not a question of seeing. It can only be felt. It is not a beauty that can be destroyed by anything. Not even death can touch it, fire cannot burn it, and it is eternal.

In the east mystics have talked about god in two ways. Those who were more intellectually oriented have talked about god as satchidananda. Sat means truth, chid means consciousness, ananda means bliss. Those who were not so intellectually oriented, who were more emotional, devotional, more poetic, more of the heart- they have talked about god as satyam shivam sundaram: truth, goodness, and beauty. These are the two trinities talked about in the east.

Truth is the same in both; it has to be so because god is: that ‘isness’ is his truth. But then the differences arise. The intellectually oriented think of god as consciousness, and then as bliss, because consciousness is continuously seeking for bliss. It is a search for bliss, so the ultimate goal becomes bliss. But the poetic approach is different.

The ultimate goal is always beauty, bliss is a byproduct. When you have experienced the ultimate beauty of existence you feel bliss, but that is a byproduct, a consequence; it is not the goal. To the poet it is not the goal. To the poet it is not relevant even to talk about it. It comes on its own, just as when listening to beautiful music you feel surrounded by a bliss, but your concern is the music, the beauty of it.

Watching a beautiful sunset, a bliss descends, but that is a consequence, it is not the goal. Your concern is the sunset. You are so absorbed in the sunset that bliss has to happen. In such utter silence, in such utter absorption with something beautiful, bliss is bound to happen. One need not think about it.

Hence in the poet’s description of god, satyam- truth- is there, then the change starts, then the paths divert. The second is not consciousness but goodness, virtue, grace, purity, innocence- those are all the meanings of shivam. And when one is graceful, virtuous, pure, innocent, beauty arrives. That beauty is spiritual beauty. You cannot find it in the outer world; you have to go in to the innermost… in the innermost shrine of your being it lives.

But both descriptions are right. They are simply symptomatic of two different minds. Humanity can be divided into two different minds, the intellect oriented person and emotion oriented person. Hence I am reminding you, constantly remind you- be a poet. Your approach towards life has to be that of a poet, of a dancer, of a singer, of a musician. Let god comes to you as beauty. Seek and search for beauty, and wherever you find beauty, bow down. By the side of a rose bush, at the time of sunset, seeing a white cloud floating in the sky, surrender! That will be your prayer. That is going to be your path.

Life can be lived as truth, or as untruth. Ordinarily people live life as untruth. They think it is very clever, intelligent. It is not, it is sheer stupidity. They think they are deceiving others; in fact they are deceived themselves. And when they die their hands will be empty, because you cannot take an untrue life with you beyond death.


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