Every time Lieh Tzu was not busy,
Yin Sheng took the opportunity to beg for secrets.
Lieh Tzu kept turning him away and would not tell him until eventually he said:
I used to think you intelligent –
are you really as vulgar as all that?
Here, I will tell you what I learnt from my own master.
Three years after I began to serve the master,
my mind no longer dared to think of right or wrong,
and my mouth no longer dared to speak of benefit and harm.
It was only then
that I got so much as a glance from the master.
After five years
my mind was again thinking of right and wrong,
and my mouth was again speaking of benefit and harm.
For the first time the master’s face relaxed into a smile.
After seven years I thought of whatever came into my mind
without any longer distinguishing between right and wrong,
and I said whatever came into my mouth
without any longer distinguishing between benefit and harm.
And for the first time
the master pulled me over to sit with him on the same mat.
After nine years
I thought without restraint of whatever came into my mind,
and said without restraint whatever came into my mouth
without knowing whether the right or wrong, benefit or harm,
were mine or another’s,
and without knowing whether that master was my teacher or not.
Everything was the same.
Now you come to be my disciple,
and before even a year has gone round
you are indignant and resentful time and time again!
The greatest art in the world is to be a disciple. It cannot be compared to anything. It is unique and incomparable. Nothing like it exists in any other relationship, nothing like it can exist.
To be a disciple, to be with a master, is to move into the unknown. You cannot be very aggressive there. If you are aggressive, the unknown will never be revealed to you. It cannot be revealed to an aggressive mind. The very nature of it is such that you have to be receptive, not aggressive.
The search for truth is not an active search, it is a deep passivity – in your deep passivity you will receive. But if you become too active and concerned, you will miss. It is like being a womb, it is feminine, you receive the truth as a woman receives a pregnancy.
Remember this…then many things will become easier to understand.
To be near a master is to be just a passivity, absorbing whatsoever the master gives or whatsoever the master is – not asking. The moment you start asking you have become aggressive, the receptivity is lost, you have become active. The passive, the feminine, is no longer there. Nobody has ever reached the truth as a male – aggressive, violent. That’s not possible. You reach very silently. In fact, you wait and truth reaches you. The truth seeks you, like water seeks some hollow ground, moves downwards, finds a place, and becomes a lake.
An active mind is too filled with itself; an active mind thinks that it knows what truth is. One has only to ask, at least the question is known; only for the answer does one have to seek and search.