Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Now what is poetry...

"Now what is poetry?" He said, "If you say it is simply a matter of words, I will say a good poet gets rid of words. If you say it is simply a matter of meaning, I will say a good poet gets rid of meaning.'But,' you ask,'without words and without meaning, where is the poetry?' To this I reply: Get rid of words and get rid of meaning, and there is still poetry."

In fact, only then is there poetry. When words are no more there, when meaning is no more there, then suddenly poetry erupts, explodes. Poetry is a flowering of your being, and religion is more like poetry than like philosophy.
Philosophy tries to explain things -- never succeeds. At the most, it can succeed only in explaining away things, but it never succeeds in explaining them. Religion makes no effort to explain life. It tries to live it. Religion does not take life as a problem to be solved -- it takes life as a mystery to be lived. Religion is not curious about life. Religion is in awe, in tremendous wonder about life.
Just our being here is such a miracle. It cannot be explained why I am here, why you are here. Why these trees are here, why these stars are here. Why at all this universe exists, and goes on peopling itself with trees and birds and people. Why in the first place it is there, there is no way to know. It simply is there. But it inspires awe! It fills the heart with wonder. It is unbelievably true -- it is incredible! It is absurd, but tremendously beautiful.

Why it is there, there is no way to say -- but it is there. And religion says: Don't waste your time for the why. It is there: delight in it! Celebrate it! Be lost into it! And let it be lost into you. Meet it! Let the meeting be like two lovers entering into each other. Let it be an orgasmic experience.
But religion in the West has a very wrong connotation. It has almost reached to a point where the very word 'religion' creates a repulsion, where the very word 'religion' reminds one of dead churches and dead priests. It reminds one of serious looking people, long faces. It has lost the capacity to dance, to sing, to celebrate. And when a religion has lost the capacity to dance, to celebrate, to sing, to love, just to be, then it is no more religion -- it is a corpse, it is theology. Theology is dead religion.
In the West theology has overpowered religion. When theology overpowers religion, then religion is nothing but philosophy. And the philosophy is also not very philosophic -- because philosophy can exist only through doubt, and theology bases itself on faith. So it is impotent philosophy, not even philosophy in the real sense.

Religion is not based on belief or faith: religion is based on awe, religion is based on wonder. Religion is based on the mysterious that is your surround. To feel it, to be aware of it, to see it, open your eyes and drop the dust of the ages. Clean your mirror! and see what beauty surrounds you, what tremendous grandeur goes on knocking at your doors. Why are you sitting with closed eyes? Why are you sitting with such long faces? Why can't you dance? and why can't you laugh?
Nietzsche is right: God is dead... because theologians have killed Him. God can be alive only when a lover is dancing. When a theologian is trying to find arguments to prove God, He is dead. God is alive when two persons fall in love -- then God is throbbing and kicking. God is alive when you look at a flower and you cannot move from there -- something overpowers you, overwhelms you. When you look at the stars and you are one with the mystery, and your boat starts sailing towards the other shore, then God is alive. When you sing a song -- it may be meaningless, it may be just la-la-la -- it may not have any meaning, but God is alive in that sheer expression of joy.
God is alive when you are alive. If you are not alive, how can your God be alive? Your God is yours. If you are dead, your God is dead; if you are alive, your God is alive. Your God cannot be more than you, because your God is your innermost core of being. So if you want to know what God is, become more alive. If you want to know what God is, become more divine. If you want to know what God is, then don't try to know -- try to feel. He comes through the door of the heart.

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