I say to people,
"Sit quietly and watch where the mind goes." If you
observe it you will see that it is always running
off to enjoy or suffer experiences that belong to
the past. So, whenever you catch it doing this,
bring it back to the present moment. In this
present moment there are no dialogues going on. In
this present moment there is nothing to control or
The mind is just like a thief. It is stealing your
happiness by making you run after things and ideas
that make you suffer all the time. Bring it back to
the present each and every time you find that it is
wandering somewhere else. This thief in your head
loots your property, your happiness, every waking
moment. And you allow him. You make friends with
him and let him do what he wants. Why should you
fondle and be friends with a snake that is going to
bite you and make you suffer? Show the mind the way
home and don't let it make you suffer all the
The internal dialogue will go on interminably until
you decide to stop indulging in it. This dialogue
continues all day and even at night while you are
dreaming. If you are serious about stopping it, you
can, by taking a firm decision and sticking to it.
"I am going to do it now. If not now, then during
this life span." If that intense determination is
there, that determination itself will be enough to
stop the flow.
How can you feel well when you are indulging in all
these mental projections? They are all just ideas
that are fighting with each other. How can you be
happy with all these mental fights going on inside
you? True quietness is there when you are not
manufacturing any mental projections. You can't be
quiet as long as these projections are there
because the projections themselves are non-stop
Everything that you see, feel and think is a
projection of the mind. You fall in love with the
objects you create. You end up falling in love with
them because you think that they are separate from
you. It's all a shadow. It's not real. As I have
just said, you can never be quiet while these
projections are there because these projections are
made up of mental noise. You will only be happy,
only be quiet when the projections stop
Everything that you see, within and without, is
just a projection of the mind. When the mind stops,
there is no projection and when there is no
projection, bliss remains.
Different teachers say different things. Everyone
claims to have a remedy for this mental uneasiness.
But if the remedy needs mental activity to carry it
out, it is not going to work. Because mental
activity, no matter how well directed, always leads
to an increase of uneasiness. Whenever you catch
the mind wandering, put it back in the Self and
leave it there. Put it in the place of no-thought
and sooner or later it will develop such a liking
for that place that it will never want to leave
Everyone wants to give you some practice or some
method as a solution to mental uneasiness. That's
not my way, and I will tell you why not. If you
perform any practice to get a particular result,
you must begin it at a certain time. And if it is
something that begins, then it must also end.
Whatever begins must end one day. What has a
beginning and an end cannot be eternal.
So, I don't give out any methods which can be done
in time. Instead, I say, "Keep quiet and don't make
any effort." This is not a method, it is just the
natural state of being.
Stay quiet and don't make any effort. Do it now.
It's not something that you need to put off till
later. Experiment with it now. Do it now and tell
me what happens. Sit quietly for at least one
minute and don't make any effort. Give up all
desires and tell me what is left?
Now, during this minute, what did you do? Were you
thinking during this time? I am asking this because
the problem is about mind control. If you are
having trouble, it means that you are having a lot
of thoughts. So I am asking you, "Tell me what
thought you had when I asked you to be quiet and
not make any effort."
When I tell you to keep quiet, I am cutting you off
from your past memories. If you can be in this
state of absolute quietness, in which no thoughts
or ideas from the past intrude, you will see and be
aware of something new, something you have never
seen before. It has no name and no form, because
anything which has name and form belongs to the
past. You recognize name and form only because of
past experience. So, if you recognise something, it
means that you are living in the past, not the
How to cut this link with the past? By sitting
quietly, by having no thoughts, and by making no
effort. Just for an instant. When you stop making
effort, when you stop looking for peace, you find
that it is already there, inside you. You don't
have to make any effort or do any practice to get
Your reaction to any object, person or idea is
based on your experience of them in the past. You
like certain things and dislike others. These
judgments are all derived from past
You must have seen puppets dance and perform their
acrobatics in empty space. Everyone is a puppet. We
are all dancing in the air, in empty space. But the
one who pulls the strings is never seen. Who is not
a puppet in this world? We are all dancing around
like puppets, performing our different activities.
What is the difference between a puppet and a
person? I don't think there is any difference.
The audience can enjoy a puppet show if it doesn't
see the one who pulls the strings. You can get lost
in the drama and imagine that the dances are real
once you forget about the man who makes the puppets
move. This is how it is in the world. Once you
cease to be aware of the one who pulls the strings
in this world, you get emotionally involved in all
kinds of dramas and imagine them to be real. You
look at the scenes in front of you and take them to
be real because you can't see that there is a
single Power, a single Source which is manifesting
as all the actors and making them move according to
a preordained script.
It is not enough just to have an intellectual
understanding. Intellect itself is a puppet. It
dances very well and deceives you into thinking
that it does everything by its own power and
authority. This is just one of its tricks. To see
through it you have to go back to the Source. When
the strings are being pulled, you can feel the
pull. Feel that pull. Follow it and see where the
pulling is coming from. Find out who is really
pulling your strings and making you do and even
think all the things that you do and think. What is
beyond this intellect? Follow it back and find out.
If you stay in the intellect you will never find
out. You have to transcend it; you have to go
beyond it and find out where it derives all its
power from. What is its Source?
There is a fountain of energy that enables you to
think, but where does it come from? First there is
this energy which enables you to discriminate. It
enables you to think, so mind comes into existence.
Then you can act and perform activities. You
function in the world through the five senses
hearing, sight, touch, smell and taste. An
object is known to you through the senses, and the
senses are known by the mind which processes them.
Then a judgment is made by the intellect as to its
quality. But where does this intellect come from?
What is That which is prior to the intellect and
which gives the intellect its power?
This intellect comes from Atman, and Atman means
Self. Sitting quietly here today, you have seen
that Self, your own Self. Out of that Self comes
all the energy that runs the intellect and the
mind. With this intellect, you can command the mind
and enjoy all the things of this world through the
senses. Everything comes from the Self, from the
unknown, from emptiness itself. All the phenomenal
waves arise from this ocean of the unknown.
No one identifies with the Self. Instead, everyone
identifies with something that is manifest, which
has a name and form. This causes all the
unhappiness, all the suffering in the world. When
you identify yourself with the Self and can say
with confidence that "I am the Self", then you can
enjoy all this manifestation without having to
suffer. You can enjoy all the waves on the ocean of
worldly life [samsara] once you know that
you are the Self and are not any of the names and
forms that appear within It. Confidence comes
through direct experience.
When you set yourself a goal called 'silence' and
have told your mind that you want to attain it, you
are never in silence. The silence of no-mind, of no
thought does not come and go. Things that come and
go are only mental states that you program yourself
You have desires and you put a lot of mental energy
into accomplishing them. You are attracted to
beautiful things. Your mind goes out to them. You
try to obtain them for yourself. But these things
are only beautiful because your mind has made a
judgment about them. The things that you classify
as 'beautiful' may not be beautiful to anyone else.
Look at this flower in the vase. Somebody put it
here because she thought it was beautiful. But if a
goat comes along, the goat's mind will see it as
food and eat it. No thought of beauty will arise in
the goat. Goats of the past teach the goats of the
present what is good to eat and what should be
avoided. This is all stored up in the memory of the
current generation of goats, who are all
conditioned to be attracted to certain things
because they know they are edible.
So, what is desirable differs from person to
person, from creature to creature. A diamond has no
value in the hands of a man who has not been
educated to know that it is worth something. For
him, it is just a worthless pebble. But when your
mind identifies it as a diamond, this otherwise
useless piece of charcoal suddenly becomes
immensely valuable. It's just a piece of carbon,
chemically no different from charcoal. But when the
mind gives it value, then for you it has value.
You have decided that you want mental silence and
you are working towards it, making a great effort
to make the mind quiet. You have chosen to strive
for a state which you call 'silence'. You have
decided that silence is desirable, so you put in a
lot of effort to try and reach that desirable
state. But I say, "If you are choosing and
striving, then you are still living in the mind."
The efforts you are making are mental, and the goal
you have set yourself is also mental. The
experience of a state you have chosen and striven
for will be a mental experience only.
If you want eternal rest, if you want the state of
real silence, then you have to be choiceless. Your
true nature is choicelessness. As long as you
choose and strive, the experience of your true
nature will be hidden from you.
If you want real silence, you have to give up all
ideas about attaining it or striving for it. You
have to give up all your searching. And having
given up all your searching, what will be left? I
will tell you. What will be left will be That which
was already there before you started running around
looking for It. It is so easy. In just a single
moment all inner dialogue stops. And why does it
stop? Because you stopped making any effort to stop
it. In the moment of no effort you become aware of
the substratum, that place from where mind rises.
You didn't do it before because you were too busy
making efforts to control the mind. It was you who
was making it complicated.
It's very simple. Keep quiet, don't make any
effort, and don't speak. Then you will understand
what I am talking about.
You don't have to go anywhere nor jump anywhere.
For jumping you need two locations the place
where you are starting from and the place you are
planning to jump to. There is no diving board nor
swimming pool. You don't have to start from one
place and jump somewhere else. This is just your
concept. When there is no jumper, no diving board,
no swimming pool, then what are you going to do?
Where will you jump?
Don't give rise to the thought, "I have to jump
into silence." But if it does arise, find out where
it comes from. Follow it back to the depths, to the
place from where it originally arose. If it has
arisen, it must have come from somewhere.
Everything you speak of and think of must come from
somewhere. Where is that 'somewhere'? Where do all
your desires come from "I like this", "I
don't like that", "I have to jump", "I am in a
state of unease." All these are just thoughts. Find
out where they all come from. Turn the mind
backwards and simply look at the Source from which
they came. That's all you have to do.
Real knowledge can only be of your own Self. You
have gone to school and your teacher has given you
knowledge which he himself has acquired from
somewhere else. But what I am talking about cannot
be learned or acquired. No one has ever learned it
from anyone else. It has been there since the
creation of the world.
Everything rises from the same Source. Everything
is a manifestation of that same Source. What is
there, between the projector and the object of
projection, in between you and another? What
separates them? Empty space. Nothingness is all
around you. In your immediate vicinity you have to
admit that there is only nothingness, emptiness.
So, why do you exclude yourself from it? Why do you
think that there is someone in the middle of the
nothingness? You think that what is seen is
separate from the one who sees it. Isn't that so?
You think that the subject who sees is different
from the object that is seen. I am telling you to
find out who the seer is. Find out who is the one
who is seeing objects. You look at your body and it
becomes an object of your sight. But who is the
seer of the body?
If the seer is consciousness, then you yourself
must be consciousness. You are not the object which
is seen and you are not the body which is seen by
the seer. You are the seer itself, consciousness
itself, not an object of the senses. That means
that you cannot be the body or anything else which
you can see, hear, feel, smell, touch or even think
about. You are the witness of all the objects that
are perceived, but you cannot be the objects
themselves. You have to find out who is the
witness, who is this character who is seeking peace
of mind. Nothing else needs to be done.