Monday, 29 June 2015

What is the life of a free man like?

You have been too close, too intimate for too long to look at the man afresh. Yes, you have a past, and yes the changed man is standing right in front of you. Now if you really love the man is not this a cause worth celebrating? Isn’t this a development to be rejoiced!

It is a strange thing. The free man has no thoughts of freedom; he is already free.
Past and future do not exist except, in the mind. There is no question of gaining freedom from them. Were they real, one could have fought with them and gained freedom.

A naked Lalla is much more dignified than your housewife wrapped in ten metres of cloth and forty ornaments. Lalla is beyond decency.

There is this beautiful story of a Buddhist monk. Have you heard ofnagarvadhu(mistress of the city)? At the time of the Buddha there was this prevalent concept ofnagarvadhu. There was this nagarvadhu who was actually a prostitute, but a very famed prostitute. The head prostitute of the city, the mistress of the entire city. Only the rich and the most powerful would come to her. So this nagarvadhu, she has been seeing the kings and the wealthy merchants, and the other powerful and respectable people since long. To be a nagarvadhu also meant lot of wealth and lot of power also. It was a status symbol to be a nagarvadhu. And this nagarvadhuwas supposed to be intelligent, and also incredibly beautiful and powerful.

This nagarvadhu saw this Buddhist monk and tried to seduce him. While seducing, she expected to be resisted by monk because she had heard that the monks are beyond attraction and repulsion. She thought that this fellow would resist her advances. And that he would not be trapped at all. But she was in for a surprise. He was trapped more easily than she could ever imagine. He just walked into the trap. She seduced, and he got seduced, without an iota of resistance.

He said, “Yes lady. What do you want from me?”
She said, “Live with me.”
He said, “Alright.” She was taken by surprise. She thought, “What kind of a monk is he? He is agreeing to live with a prostitute.” He said, “I will live with you.”

She thought that probably he was a corrupt monk, that probably the Buddha could not teach him fully. Slowly she came to see what it meant to be a disciple of the Buddha. He lived with her, he experienced whatever was there to be experienced. Because she was intelligent, she was able to figure out that something within him remained untouched even in their most intimate moments. She realized that she could not trap him. He was so sure of himself that he just walked into the trap. He knew that nothing could enslave him. He had a very deep-seated confidence.

The monk said to her, “What can you do to me? Yes, come on let’s play! Let’s play. Let me see what deepest seduction you can offer. Let me see what deepest pleasure you have laid out. And let me see whether they are strong enough to corrupt my core.”

Nothing corrupted him. And he never boasted. He just stayed with her. Slowly she started realizing that he was no ordinary man. She started realizing that it was not she who had won him over, in fact, she had been won over by him. And one day he set-off to go.

He said, “I am going.” She knew that he couldn’t be stopped. His time had come. He would go. And after he had gone, she wept. She remembered him. But she was a nagarvadhu and he was monk. What could she do?

A few months after he had gone, she realized that she was actually no more a prostitute. His very touch had permanently changed her. She had become the same that he was. Just as he was untouched even during the physical arousal, she found that the same was happening to her. In the middle of the world, she no longer belonged to the world. She saw that her time too had come. So when the king came to her, she declared it to the king that she would leave the palace.
The king asked, “Where will you go?”
She said, “I will no more be a nagarvadhu. I will stay with him.”

The king thought for a while. The king had been in love with her since long. Not only was she physically attractive, she was also a very intelligent woman. So the king said, “Your life as a nagarvadhu is ending now. You are beginning another life.”
She said, “Yes.”

He then said, “Then why not as my queen? Now that thenagarvadhu is dying, passing away, why don’t you begin your second life as my queen?”
She said, “No. I have to go to him.”

The king said, “But he is a monk. Just as he has left you this time, he will leave you again. He is never going to marry you. You will never become his wife. No monk is ever going to take a wife.”

And her reply is worth remembering. She said,”Better his mistress than your wife. There is more dignity in being his mistress, than there is in being your wife.”

That is Lalla for you. There is more dignity in my nakedness than is there in all your sarees and your ornaments. Often mistresses are far more dignified, than wives. Do you understand the difference between dignity and decency? To be a king’s wife is a very decent affair. But to be a monk’s mistress – monks don’t have mistresses, monks have friends – is a far more dignified thing than to be a worldly man’s wife.

We all are obsessed with decency. To them I implore, “Please get rid of your decency. Only when you get rid of your decency, will you enter into the domain of dignity.
That is the life of a Freeman.

For more clarity, you can read the transcriptions of original talks on WordPress, just type Words Into Silence in your search box.

No comments:

Post a Comment