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We want beautiful houses, our desires are for success in the world -- fame, name, political power. In terms of spiritual skill we have fallen, certainly. In those old days people were poor, with no science, no technology, but still they were superior in the sense that their whole longing was to search for the meaning of life. And anybody who was searching for the meaning of life... at least if you could not go so far, you could help. Helping anybody who was searching for truth was in itself considered a great virtue.

Today we are very small in that sense. Our desires are for money, our desires are for And I accept the idea. A society should live... of course everybody cannot be a monk unless my strategy is followed. And it is a little complicated to remain a witness in your ordinary life. It is easier to be a witness if you live in a monastery, or if you are a monk and you don't deal with ordinary life. You don't earn any money, you don't have any power, you live just on begging -- just one meal a day. Because the society was so poor, Buddha told his ordained monks, "You should collect your one meal" -- only one meal was allowed in twenty-four hours -- "from seven houses. Just piece by piece, so you are not a burden on anybody."

The moment you become alert to your awareness you have found the key. Then it is up to you to use it as much as you can. And whenever you have time, space, don't waste it in stupid things – playing cards, watching a football match, watching two idiots wrestling... Stop all that nonsense, that is not going to help you grow.

Use all this time, energy, just sitting silently, enjoying the peace that descends when you are only a watcher. And it goes on deepening; it takes you ultimately to your innermost core. And to experience the center of your being is to experience also the center of the whole universe.

(The Sword And The Lotus # 21)

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