This is a very strange and insane world. Everybody is living in some way falsely, just to get appreciation. Just to hear people applause. Everybody is hungry for attention. I realised this after the last column was out.
This time people applauded the work however feedbacks too were followed. Honestly I did not like, I was kind of hurt but at the same time I thought of improving and taking the criticism seriously. In this weeklong game between mind and ego I have realised that we should be ready to learn. It is just an article that has to go in a newspaper. May be some people will say, that the article was good, some will say it was useless – but how does it matter. Ultimately it only matters to my happiness which is directly associated with my ego. Where is my learning as an individual? Have I focused to improve on my mistakes just to get positive response? I asked myself. And trust me it was mourning. I realised that my efforts should not only be towards improvement but towards learning. We should always be ready to learn and to learn we need to be disciplined.
Discipline is a very beautiful word but it has been misused as all other beautiful words in the past. Discipline is being disciple – the one who is always ready to learn, and the process of being ready to learn is discipline. And to be ready to learn we need to drop our knowledge because it is nothing but nourishment for our ego. Socrates once said that “he knows only one thing that he knows nothing”. I believe this is the beginning of learning. When we don’t know anything, of course a great learning arises to inquire, explore, and investigate. When we are in that state of not knowing we are open, there is no barrier, we are ready to explore and that becomes our discipline.
We have been told to discipline our life, to do this and that. Thousands of shoulds and should nots have been imposed on us. And when we live with these dos and don’ts we cannot be creative, we are prisoners, everywhere we come across a wall. And to be creative we need to dissolve all boundaries because we need the whole sky and all the stars.
So yes, the meaning of discipline here is not that of any commandments, it is just an insight into how to keep learning and never become so knowledgeable. Our discipline has to come from our very heart; it has to be our own. When somebody else gives us discipline it is never fit for us; it will be like wearing somebody else’s clothes. Either they’ll be too loose or too tight. Mohammad and Buddha have given discipline to millions of Mohammedans and Buddhists; it may have been good for them, but it cannot be good for anybody else. Our learning discipline has to be our own, we need to respond to the situation according to the moment, not according to any ready-made answers given by others.
When we are ready to learn we are free in our mind and when we are free we live in the moment. And moment is never consistent; one thing may be right this moment and may become wrong the next moment. We do not have to become consistent, otherwise we’ll be dead. We need to be alive and live each moment without reference to the past and without reference to the future either. We need to live in the moment and our response will be total because we are empty and we are open for anything that comes to our way in that particular moment. And that totality has beauty and creativity. Then whatever we do will have a beauty of its own. Hence, making mistakes is part of that moment. It has been done responding to the moment and we need to understand that we will keep on making mistakes because that’s how we learn. We left ourselves free and responded to the situation, we are open for everything then there is no way that could stop us from learning. And that’s the best thing learning has that it only comes to us when we are empty.
“When you talk, you are only repeating what you already know; But when you listen, you may learn something new”. Dalai Lama