You must have heard what the existentialists say. They have a very basic dictum: that existence precedes essence. They say that man is born first, and then, by and by, he creates his own essence, his own soul. Man is born empty, with no content in him, just a blank paper. Then, by and by, he has to write his own autobiography on it. He has to make his own signature, he brings none – he comes as an emptiness.
The Bauls say just the opposite thing. They say: Man is born with essence, the adhar manush. The essential man is always there, manifest or not manifest. The tree is already in the seed. Essence precedes existence, not otherwise. The Bauls say that life is not a creation of something new, it is just unfoldment. You already have it; it just has to be unfolded, barriers just have to be removed. Obstacles just have to be put aside and your life starts unfolding. You are like a bud – when obstacles are no more there you start flowering, your lotus opens.
But that which you are going to become you already are, in essence. “Because if you are not already,” the Bauls say, “then you cannot become.” You can become only that which you are. You can become only your being. There is no other way of becoming, there is nothing else you can become. A rosebush will grow roses, a lotus plant will grow lotuses. You are already carrying your destiny, just obstacles have to be removed.
This is what Bauls call preparation. To prepare oneself means to remove the obstacles on the path. If you remove hate, love starts flowing. You are not to create love, nobody can create love. If you were to create love then it would be impossible. Just remove the hate and you will see love streaming. Remove unconsciousness and you will see knowing arising in you. Remove the negative and the positive starts unfolding itself. Then the whole preparation is just negative. It is almost as if a rock is blocking a small stream: you remove the rock and the stream starts moving. With the rock blocking her path, it may not ever have been possible for her to come and be manifested.
We are carrying many rocks within our beings – call them blocks in your energy – but those blocks have to be dissolved and removed.
The methods of the Bauls are very simple. They say that if you can dance, many blocks will disappear from your being – because when a person dances and really moves into dance, and becomes movement, then he becomes liquid. Have you not seen it? If you have seen somebody lost in dancing, can’t you see it? – that he is no longer solid? He is flowing. The solidity is gone, he has become liquid. This liquidity melts the blocks. So dancing is the yoga of the Baul; he dances for hours together. When the moon is in the sky in the night, the Bauls will dance the whole night – because for them the moon is a symbol of their Beloved, Krishna. They call Krishna “the moon.” When the moon is there they will dance, and they will dance madly. And this dance is not a performance. It is not for somebody else to see. If somebody sees it and watches, that’s another thing. The Baul dances for him-self, for his own pleasure.