FROM DARKNESS TO LIGHT 'THE SEARCH'
I have been a wanderer long In this world of transient things. I have known the passing pleasures thereof. As the rainbow is beautiful, But soon vanishes into nothingness, So have I known, From the very foundation of the world, The passing away of all things Beautiful, joyous and pleasurable.
In search of the Eternal I lost myself in the fleeting. All things have I tasted in search of Truth.
In bygone ages Have I known The pleasures of the transient world - -
The tender mother with her children, The arrogant and the free, The beggar that wanders the face of the earth, The contentment of the wealthy, The woman of enticements, The beautiful and the ugly, The man of authority, the man of power, The man of consequence, the bestower and the guardian, The oppessed and the opressor, The liberator and the tyrant, The man of great possessions, The man of renunciation, the sannyasi, The man of activity and the man of dreams, The arrogant priest in gorgeous robes, and the humble worshipper, The poet, the artist and the creator,
At all the altars of the world have I worshipped, All religions have known me, Many ceremonies have I performed, In the pomp of the world have I rejoiced, In the battles of defeat and victory have I fought, The despiser and the despised,
The man acquainted with grief And agonies of many sorrows, The man of pleasure and abundance.
In the secret recesses of my heart have I danced, Many births and deaths have I known, In all these fleeting realms have I wandered, In passing ecstasies, certain of their endurance, And yet I never found that eternal Kingdom of Happiness. Once I sought for Thee - - The imperishable Truth, The eternal Happiness, The culmination of all Wisdom - - On the mountain top, In the star-lit sky, In the shadows of the soft moon, In the temples of man, In the books of the learned, In the soft spring leaf, In the dancing waters, On the face of man,
In the bubbling brook, In sorrow, in pain, In joy and ecstasy - - I did not find Thee.
As the mountaineer that climbs great heights, Leaving his many burdens at each step, So have I climbed, Throwing aside all transient things.
As the sannyasi with his robes of gold, With the begging bowl of happiness, So have I renounced.
As the gardener who kills The destructive weed of the garden, So have I annihilated the self.
As the winds, So am I free and untrammelled.
Fresh and eager as the wind That seeketh the hidden places of the valley, So have I sought The secret abodes of my soul And purged myself of all things, past and present.
As, suddenly, the robes of silence Fall over the noisy world, So, instantly, have I found Thee Deep in the heart of all things and in mine own.
On the mountain path I sat on a rock, And Thou wert beside me and in me, All things being in Thee and in me. Happy is the man that findeth Thee and me In all things.
In the light of the setting sun, Through the delicate lace of a spring tree, I beheld Thee. In the twinkling stars I beheld Thee. In the swift passing bird, Disappearing into the black mountain, I beheld Thee.
Thy glory has awakened the glory in me.
As I have found, O world, The Truth, the eternal Happiness, So do I desire to give.
Come let us consider together, ponder together and be happy together; Let us reason together and bring forth Happiness.
As I have tasted And know full well the sorrows and pains, The ecstasies and joys Of this fleeting world, So do I know your travail. The glory of a butterfly passeth in a day, So, O world, are thy delights and pleasures. As the sorrows of a child, So, O world, are thy sorrows and pains, Many pleasures leading to many sorrows, Many sorrows to greater sorrows, Continual strife and ceaseless small victories. As the delicate bud, suffering the long winter, Blossoms forth and gives delicious scent to the air, And withers away before the setting of the sun, So are thy struggles, thy achievements, and thy death - - A wheel of pain and pleasure, Birth and death.
As I lost myself in the transient things In search of that eternal Happiness, So, O world, art thou lost in the fleeting. Awake and gather thy strength, Look about and consider. That unfading Happiness - - The Happiness that is the only Truth, The Happiness that is the end of all search, The Happiness that is the end of all questionings and doubt, The Happiness that brings freedom from birth and death, The Happiness that is the only law, The Happiness that is the only refuge, The Happiness that is the source of all things, The Happiness that gives eternal comfort, That true Happiness that is enlightenment - - Abides within thee.
As I have gained strength, So would I give This Happiness. As I have gained affectionate detachment, So would I give This Happiness. As I have gained passionate dispassion, So would I give This Happiness. As I have conquered life and death, So would I give This Happiness.
Throw aside, O world, thy vanities And follow me, For I know the way up the mountain, For I know the way through this turmoil and grief.
There is only one One Truth, One Law, One Refuge, One Guide, To this eternal Happiness.
Awake, arise, Consider and gather thy strength. As it is but for a night The birds rest on a tree, So have I communed with strangers, In my long journey Through many lands.
Out of every sheaf of corn I drew a blade.
Out of every day I gathered some advantage.
From the full-laden tree I plucked a ripe fruit.
My days are swifter Than the weaver's shuttle.
As one beholds through a small window A single green leaf, a small patch of the vast blue sky, So I began to perceive Thee, In the beginning of all things. As the leaf faded and withered, the patch covered as with dark cloud, So didst Thou fade and vanish, but to be reborn again, As the single green leaf, as the small patch of the blue sky.
For many lives have I seen The bleak winter and the green spring. prisoned in my little room, I could not behold the entire tree nor the whole sky. I swore there was no tree, nor the vast sky - - That was the Truth. Through time and destruction
My window grew large. I beheld Now, A branch with many leaves, And a greater patch of the blue with many clouds.
I forgot the single green leaf, the small patch of the vast blue. I swore there was no tree, nor the immense sky - - That was the Truth.
Weary of this prison, This small cell, I raged at my window. With bleeding fingers I tore away brick after brick, I beheld, Now, The entire tree, its great trunk, Its many branches, its thousand leaves, And an immense part of the sky. I swore there was no other tree, no other part to the sky - - That was the Truth.
This prison no longer holds me, I flew away through the window. O friend, I behold every tree and the vast expanse of the limitless sky. Though I live in every single leaf and in every small patch of the vast blue sky, Though I live in every prison, looking out through every small casement - - Liberated am I. Lo! not a thing shall bind me - - This is the Truth. IV
O world, Thou art seeking everywhere for Happiness.
In every clime, Among all peoples, Among the animals and among the green trees, Beside the dancing waters, Upon the stately mountains, Amid the cool valleys, And in the sun-parched lands, Under the serene star-lit skies, In the radiance of the setting sun, In the freshness of the dawn - - All beings are searching for this Happiness.
Though thy sons build impenetrable walls Around their country, Shutting out the happiness they seek, Though thy learned priests fight for the Gods they shall worship, Though the contentment of the wealthy be stagnating, Though the oppressed and the exploited be suffering, Though the man of thought has not found the eternal solution, Though the sannyasi, who renounces the world, has not gained enlightenment, Though the beggar, that wanders from house to house for kindness has not found shelter, Though thy people prefer the darkness of the night to the light of day, Though thy people turn night into day - - All are searching for that lasting Happiness.
As the dreary tree longingly suffers for the spring and green happiness, So all thy people look for that lasting Happiness. The lady of fashion who depends on clothes and wealth, The woman who is painted, The girl who flirts, The man who seeks happiness in clothes, The man who drinks incessantly, The man who cannot be happy unless playing at something, The man who kills to enjoy, The priest in his gorgeous robes, The recluse with the loin cloth, The actor dressed to please the audience, The artist struggling to create, The poet who pours into words the immensity of his thoughts and dreams, The musician whose soul is thrilled with sound, The saint in his asceticism, The sinner, if there be one, who does not care for God or man, The bourgeois who is frightened of all things - - All these are searching for happiness.
They buy and they sell, They build magnificent palaces, Surrounding themselves with all the beauty That money can buy, They plant gardens, the exquisite delight of the refined, They cover themselves with jewels, They quarrel and they are charming, They drink without restraint, They eat without restraint, They are virulent and pacific, They worship and curse, They love and hate, They die and are born again, They are cruel to man and beast, They destroy and create, They produce and annihilate - - Yet they are all seeking happiness, Happiness in transient things. The rose, beautiful and glorious, Dieth tomorrow.
In search of happiness They build vast structures, Call them Churches, And enter therein, But it eludes them, as in the naked streets. They invent a God to satisfy themselves, But they never find in Him what they long for. The incense, the flowers, the candles, The gorgeous robes, the thrilling music, Are but enticements for that search. The deep note of the distant bell, The monotonous prayer, Calling, crying and begging, Are but the gropings in the dark For that lasting Happiness.
In search of happiness They build cool, gigantic Temples, The product of many minds, The work of many hands; The chantings, the smoke of the camphor, The beauty of the sacred lotus, Do not satisfy their craving.
In search of happiness They bribe, they corrupt, they make unholy The earth, the seas and mountains. Their graven images do not answer their call. As the mountain stream sweeps all things before it, So is their structure of happiness destroyed in an instant; They destroy each other in their jealous love.
In search of happiness They give labels, pretty-sounding names To each other, And think they have found The source of Eternity, Solved the problem of their sorrow.
In search of happiness They marry, rejoicing in their new-found happiness; They are happy as the flower That blossoms with the sun And dies with the sun. They change their love and renew their rejoicings. They are full and bubbling over With ecstasy, And, in an instant,
Sorrow is the outcome of their fleeting joy.
As the cloud, fully laden, that empties itself And vanishes from the heavens, Leaving again the barren sky, So is their love, that is full, That is powerful, that creates and destroys. Their love, so triumphant in the beginning, So strong with desires, So beautiful in the full bloom, So unrestrained in its fulfillment, Fades as the leaf. To be born again, Fading again as the leaf. As the sorrowing tree That has lost its happy leaves, So is the man Who sought happiness Through love.
In solitude, In crowded streets, They search for happiness, All the world moans for happiness. The winds whisper, The storms threaten, But the man looks for happiness In the passing things, In the transient things, In the things that he can touch and perceive, And groans after the loss of his happiness, As the child that cries After the broken doll.
For their happiness fades and withers As the tender leaf.
Search their hopes, Their longings, Their desires,
Their selfishness, Their quarrels and angers, Their dignities, Their ambitions, Their glories, Their rewards, Their distinctions - - There is disillusionment, There is vanity, There is unhappiness.
Search their class distinctions, Their spiritual distinctions, Their limitations, Their openness, Their prejudices, Their embraces - - There is an uncertainty of purpose, There is an uncertainty of happiness.
Wherever you may look, Wherever you may wander, In whatever clime you may abide, There is sorrow, there is pain, Unsatisfiable voids, Open aching wounds, bared and exposed, Or covered over With the panoply of great rejoicing. No man sayeth - -"My happiness is indestructible." There is everywhere decay and death, And the renewal of life.
So are they that seek happiness in the passing - - Their happiness is of the moment. As the butterfly, that tasteth the honey of every flower, That dieth in the day, As the desert that is deluged with the rain Yet remaineth a weary land without a shadow - - So is their happiness As the sands of the sea are their actions In search of this happiness. As the aged and mighty tree
That towers into the sky And is felled by the axe in a moment - - So is their happiness.
They look to their happiness In the transient, In the fleeting, In the objective, And they find it not. Such is their fleeting and unsatisfied happiness.
Can you grow the tree of Happiness on sand?
The Happiness that will not fade by usage, That increases by action, That increases by feeling, That is born of Truth, That never decays, That knows no beginning, no end, That is free, The Happiness that is Eternal, They have never tasted.
The Happiness that knows Of no loneliness, Of immense certainty, Of detachment, Of love that is free of persons, That is free from prejudices, That is not bound by tradition, That is not bound by authority, That is not bound by superstitions, That is of no religion. The Happiness That is not at the command of another, That is of no priest, That is of no sect, That requires no labels, That is bound by no law, That cannot be shaken by God or man, That is solitary and embraces all, That blows from the snow-clad mountains That blows from the hot desert, That burns, That heals, That destroys, That creates, That delights in solitude and in numbers, That fills the soul through Eternity. That is the God, The wife, the mother, The husband, the father, And the child. That is of no class, That is of the aristocracy of divinity, That is the refinement of the refined, That is a philosophy unto itself. That is as vast as the seas, That is open as the skies, That is profound as the lake, That is tranquil as the peaceful valley, That is serene as the mountain, That is beyond the shadow of death, That is beyond the limitations of birth, That is as the strength of the hills, That bears the fruit of many generations, That is the consummation of all desire, That is the ecstasy of purpose, That is the source of all existence, That is the well whose waters feed the worlds, That is the ecstasy, the joy, That is the dancing star of our being, That giveth divine discontentment, That is born of Eternity, That is the destruction of self, That is the pool of wisdom, That creates happiness in others That has dominion over all things - - Such happiness thou hast never tasted, O world.
For thou hast been fed on the food of another, Thou hast been taught by the lips of another, Thou hast been taught to draw thy strength from another, Thou hast been taught that thy happiness lies in another, That thy redemption is at the hands of another, That wisdom is in the mouth of another, That Truth can only be attained through another, Thou hast been taught to worship the God of another, To adore at the altar of another, To discipline thyself to the authority of another, To shape thyself in the mould of another, To abide in the shadow of another, To grow in the protection of another, Thou hast been taught to lay thy foundations in another, To hear with the ears of another, To feel with the heart of another, To think with the mind of another; Thou hast been fed with the enticements of transient things, Thou hast been fed with the food that never satisfies, Thou hast been fed with the knowledge that disappears with strife. Thou hast been fed at the hands of the satisfied, With the false and the fleeting.
Thou hast been nourished by laws, by governments, by philosophies, Thou hast been led, driven and exposed, Thou hast been sheltered under the shadow That changes from moment to moment, Thou hast been nurtured by false truths and false gods, Thou hast been stimulated by false desires, Thou hast been fed on false ambitions, Thou hast been fed with the fruits of the earth, O world.
Thou hast been taught to seek Truth in the fleeting, Thou hast been nourished by the transient things, In these thou shalt never find that Happiness For which thy soul doth seek and suffer.
But, As the diver plunges deep into the sea For the pearl,
Risking his life in search of the transient, So must thou plunge deep down within thyself In search of Eternity. As the adventurous mountaineer that climbs to conquer, So must thou climb to that intoxicating height, Where thou seest all things in their true proportion. As the lotus that pushes heavenward through mire, So must thou push aside all transient things If thou wouldst discover that Kingdom of Happiness. As the majestic tree depends for its strength on its hidden roots, And plays with the great passing winds, So must thou establish thy hidden strength deep within thyself, And play with the passing world. As the swift-running river knows its source, So must thou know thine own being. As the soft blue lake whose depth no man knows, So must thy depth be unfathomable. As the seas contain a multitude of living things, So in thee are there hidden secrets of the worlds. As on the mountain side, at various altitudes, different flowers grow, So in thee are there degrees of beauty. As the earth is full of hidden treasures which no man hath seen, So in thee are hidden secrets, unknown to thyself.
As the winds possess immense, inexhaustible power, So in thee lieth great unconquerable energy. As the mountain-tops dance in the light of the sun, So shalt thou dance in the light of thy knowledge. As there is an ever-changing vision on the winding mountain path, So in thee there is a constant unfoldment. As the distant star that scintillates of a dark night, So is he that hath discovered himself.
In thee alone is the God, for there is no other God, Thou art the God that all religions and nations worship, In thee alone are joy, ecstasy, power and strength, In thee alone is the power to grow, to change and alter, In thee alone are the experiences of many ages gathered, In thee alone is the source of all things - - Love, hate, jealousy, fear, anger and sweetness - - In thee alone lies the power to create or to destroy, In thee alone is the beginning of all thought, feeling and action, In thee alone lies nobility, In thee alone is no loneliness.
Thou art the master of all things. Thou art the source of all things.
In thee alone lies the power to do good and to do evil, In thee alone lies the power to create Heaven and Hell, In thee alone lies the power to control the future and the present. Thou art the master of Time, In thee alone is the Kingdom of Happiness, In thee alone is the eternal Truth, In thee alone is the well of inexhaustible Love. O world, If thou wouldst know all the hidden secrets, The treasures of many ages,
The experiences of many centuries, The accumulation of power of many generations, The thought of the past, The ecstasies, joys, sorrow and pain of bygone ages, And the great and foolish actions of the many lives that lie behind thee, The centuries of uncertainty and doubt, If thou wouldst know of the immense future, Of the great heights of joyous growth, Of the adventure of good and evil, Of the result of all thought, of all feelings, and of all actions, Of the many past lives and of the many future lives, If thou wouldst know of thy hates, of thy jealousies, Of thine agonies, of thy pleasures and pains, Of thine ecstatic love, of thy joyous rapture, Of thy burning devotion, of thy bubbling enthusiasm, Of thy joyous seriousness, of thine aching worship, Of thine unrestrained adoration, If thou wouldst concern thyself with the lasting, With the eternal, with the indestructible, With divinity, with immortality, With wisdom which is the pool of Heaven,
If thou wouldst know of that everlasting Kingdom of Happiness, If thou wouldst know of that beauty that never fades or decays, If thou wouldst know of that truth that is imperishable and alone - - Then, O world, Look deep within thyself With eyes clear, if thou wouldst perceive all things.
As the tranquil pool that reflects the heavens above, So shall all things find their reflection in thee. As the flower that blossoms forth in the warm sunshine, So must thou unfold if thou wouldst know thyself. As the eagle soars into the heavens, unrestrained and free, So must thou soar if thou wouldst know thyself. As the river that dances down to the sea, So must thou dance if thou wouldst know thyself. As the mountain is strong and full of power, So must thou be if thou wouldst know thyself. As the precious stone sparkles in the sun, So must thou shine if thou wouldst know thyself. As the mother is to the babe, tender with affection, So must thou be if thou wouldst know thyself. As the winds are free and untrammelled, So must thou be if thou wouldst know thyself.
If thou wouldst taste of all these things, O world, And walk with me in the Kingdom of Happiness, Thou must be free from that poison of Truth - - Prejudice - - For thou art immense in thy prejudice, Both the ancient and the inexperienced. Thou must be free from that narrowness of tradition, The narrowness of custom, habit, feeling and thought, The narrowness of religion, worship and adoration, The narrowness of nation, The narrowness of family and of possession, The narrowness of love, The narrowness of friendship, The narrowness of thy God and of thy form of approach to Him, The narrowness of thy conception of beauty, The narrowness of thy work and of thy duty, The narrowness of thine achievements and glories, The narrowness of thy desires, ambitions and purpose, The narrowness of thy longings and satisfactions, The narrowness of thy discontentments and contentments, The narrowness of thy struggles and victories, The narrowness of thine ignorance and knowledge, The narrowness of thy teachings and laws, The narrowness of thine ideas and views - - Thou must be free from all these.
Prejudice is as a shadow On the face of the mountain, As a dark cloud In the fair skies, As the withered rose That ceases to delight the world, As the blight that destroys The bloom of a ripe fruit, As the bird that has lost
The power of its wings, As the man that hath no ears, Deaf to sweet music, As the man that hath no eyes, Blind to the gorgeous sunset, As the delights of experience To the man that is enfeebled.
Prejudice is as the agitated lake That cannot reflect the beauty of the skies, As a barren rock of the mountain, As the weary land of a shadowless country, As the dry bed of the river That knows not the delights Of the waters of many summers, As the tree that has lost its green happiness, As the woman that is childless, As the breath of winter That withereth all things, As the shadow of death In a happy land.
Prejudice is evil, It is a corrupter of the world, It is a destroyer of the beautiful, It is the root of all sorrow, It has its being in ignorance, It is a state of utter darkness where light cannot find its way, It is an abomination, A sin against truth.
If thou wouldst know thyself, Thou must cut thyself free from this weed that binds thee, That suffocates thee, That destroys thy vision, That kills thine affection, That prevents thy thought.
When thou art free, untrammelled, When thy body is controlled and relaxed, When thine eyes can perceive all things in their pure nakedness, When thy heart is serene and burdened with affection, When thy mind is well poised, Then, O world, The gates of that Garden, The Kingdom of Happiness, Are open.
From the ancient of times, From the very foundation of the earth, The end for all things Have I known.
As the mighty river knows At the very beginning of its birth The end of its long journey, Though it wander through many lands, So have I known.
As in the time of winter The barren tree Knows the coming joys of the spring, So have I known. Long have I wandered Through many lives, In many lands, Amidst many peoples, In search of this end I have known.
As the stagnant pools that are purified With the coming rains, So had I remained Motionless, Till the hurricane of sorrow Cleansed me.
Burdened have I been With many possessions, With the wealth of the world, With the comforts that bring stagnation.
Rejoiced have I been In the satisfaction of a multitude of things, Till the storm of tears Washed away the pride of abundance. And as the lands of the desert Are without shadows, So had my life become.
I worshipped at the altars Of way-side shrines, Whose Gods have denied me Of the end that I have known.
Their priests held me In thrall By the magic of their words, By the intoxication of their incense. In the sheltering shadows of the temple walls I remained, in darkness
Weeping for the end I have known. Till anew The whirlwind of pain Threw me out again On the open road.
I created philosophies, and creeds, Complicated theories of life; I buried myself In the intellectual creations of man, Great in the arrogance thereof. As of a sudden The storm breaks, So was I left naked, Overwhelmed by the agony Of the transient things.
Great was my love, Immense was the satisfaction thereof.
I sang, I danced In the ecstasy of my love, But as fades the tender rose In the full days of summer, So my love withered In the full days of my enjoyment. I was as empty as the wide skies, I wept for the end I have known.
Renouncing all, As naked as I came, I withdrew from the world of pleasure, In solitude, Under the great trees, In seclusion Of the peaceful valley, I sought for the end That my soul cried for, The end that I have known Through the ages of time. As the flower sleeps of a night, Withholding its glory For the joys of the morrow, So, gathering my strength, I delved deep Into the secret stores of my heart For the joy of discovery. As one beholds the light At the end of a dark passage, So I beheld The end of my search, The end I have known.
As the builder Lays brick upon brick, For the edifice of his desire, So, from the ancient of times, from the very foundation of the earth, Have I gathered,
The dust of experience, Life after life, For the consummation Of my heart's desire.
Behold! My house is complete and full, And now I am free to depart.
As the mighty river knows At the very beginning of its birth The end of its long journey, So have I known.
As in the time of winter The barren tree Knows the coming joys of the spring, So have I known.
From the ancient of times, From the very foundation of the earth, The end for all things Have I known.
Lo! the hour has come, The hour that I have known. Liberated am l, Free from life and death, Sorrow and pleasure call me no more, Detached am I in affection, Beyond the dreams of the Gods am l.
As the moon is full and serene In the days of harvest, So am I In the days of my Liberation. Simple as the tender leaf am I, For in me are many winters and many springs.
As the dewdrop is of the sea, So am I born In the ocean of liberation.
As the mysterious river Enters the open seas, So have I entered Into the world of Liberation.
This is the end I have known.