But even if you stop the clock, your clock is not running the time. Both will carry the image stuck in their minds, and they would like you to go on fulfilling that image. If, in some way, you differ from that image, then you are deceiving, cheating. Nobody can fulfill that image, it is impossible, it is against nature.
The function of the commune is to give you the opportunity to be together, without any relationship. It gives you the opportunity to relate to people without getting fettered to people. It gives you the opportunity to know others, feel others, but without any bargain, without any bondage, without any imprisonment. You remain you; the other remains the other.
It is good if we meet today, it is a joy to be together, but if it is not going to happen tomorrow then there is no need to go on weeping for spilled milk. It is pointless. Perhaps this meeting was meant to be only for this time. You remain a stranger, the other remains a stranger, and you don’t reduce each other into acquaintances.
The strangeness is absolute, indestructible.
So the commune is not another society. It is not providing you with a society, a club, a congregation, a party. No, it is simply providing you a space, and an understanding that all these people are lonely, just as you are. But don’t try to fill it, because if you try to fill it, you are trying to do something against nature and you will be miserable. Hence, don’t think in terms of loneliness; better to think in terms of aloneness.
And to be alone is so beautiful; untrespassed, nobody trampling on you, you are left to be yourself and you leave others to be themselves. Yes, once in a while you meet…
India has produced a few great geniuses in this century; one of them was Rabindranath Tagore. I love one of his novels – The Last Poem is the name of the novel:
There are two persons: one, a young man, a poet, a philosopher, actually says what Rabindranath would like to say – he represents Rabindranath – and a woman who is in need of relationship. She is continually harassing him about marriage. And particularly in India, if a woman and a man are even seen walking together, that is enough for a scandal. They might not be doing anything, but just walking together and it is enough for a scandal; the whole town will be agog, and so many stories will start springing up from nowhere. And of course the woman suffers more because everywhere people start pointing at her.
So she was desperate. She was saying, “Why do you go on postponing? You love me, you want to be with me. If you don’t love me, I will not force you.”
And the man says, “I love you, that’s why I am not going to marry you.” Now, this is very difficult for the woman. If she had been from my commune she would have understood. But what kind of statement is this: because I love you I cannot marry you? But she goes on and on, so he says, “I will marry you on one condition.”