Demand is born out of duality: "I am unhappy and I must be happy". In that very demand that I must be happy is unhappiness. When one makes an effort to be good, in that very goodness is evil. Everything affirmed contains its own opposite, and effort to overcome strengthens that against which it strives. When you demand an experience of truth or reality, that very demand is born out of your discontent with what is, and therefore the demand creates the opposite. And in the opposite there is what has been. So one must be free of this incessant demand, otherwise there will be no end to the corridor of duality. This means knowing yourself so completely that the mind is no longer seeking.
Such a mind does not demand experience; it cannot ask for a challenge or know a challenge; it does not say, "I am asleep" or "I am awake". It is completely what it is. Only the frustrated, narrow, shallow mind, the conditioned mind is always seeking them more. Is it possible then to live in this world without the more - without this everlasting comparison? Surely it is? But one has to find out for oneself.
Investigation into this whole question is meditation. That word has been used both in the east and the west in a most unfortunate way. There are different schools of meditation, different methods and systems. There are systems which say, "Watch the movement of your big toe, watch it, watch it, watch it"; there are other systems which advocate sitting in a certain posture, breathing regularly or practicing awareness. All this is utterly mechanical. Another method gives you a certain word and tells you that if you go on repeating you will have some extraordinary transcendental experience. This is sheer nonsense.
It is a form of self-hypnosis. By repeating Amen or Om or Coca-Cola indefinitely you will obviously have a certain experience because by repetition the mind becomes quiet. By repetition you can induce the mind to be gentle and soft but it is still a petty, shoddy, little mind. You might as well put a piece of stick you have picked up in the garden on the mantelpiece and give it a flower every day. In a month you will be worshiping it, and not to put a flower in front of it will become a sin.
Meditation is now following any system; it is not constant repetition and imitation. Meditation is not concentration. It is one of the favorite gambits of some teachers of meditation to insist on their pupils learning concentration - that is, fixing the mind on one thought and driving out all other thoughts. This is a most stupid, ugly thing, which any schoolboy can do because he is forces to. It means that all the time you are having a battle between the insistence that you must concentrate on the one hand and your mind on the other which wanders away to all sorts of other things, whereas you should be attentive to every movement of the mind wherever it wanders. When your mind wanders off it means you are interested in something else.
Meditation demands an astonishingly alert mind; meditation is the understanding of the totality of life in which every form of fragmentation has ceased. Meditation is not control of thought, for when thought is controlled it breeds conflict in the mind, but when you understand the structure and origin of thought, then thought will not interfere. That very understanding of the structure of the thinking is its own discipline which is meditation.
Meditation is to be aware of every thought and of every feeling, never to say it is right or wrong but just to watch it and move with it. In that watching you begin to understand the whole movement of thought and feeling. And out of this awareness comes silence. Silence put together by thought is stagnation, is dead, but the silence that comes when thought has understood its own beginning, the nature of itself, understood how all thought is never free but always old - this silence is meditation in which the meditator is entirely absent, for the mind has emptied itself of the past.
Meditation is a state of mind which looks at everything with complete attention, not just parts of it. And no one can teach you how to be attentive. If any system teaches you how to be attentive, then you are attentive to the system and that is not attention. Meditation is one of the greatest arts in life - perhaps the greatest, and one cannot possibly learn it from anybody, that is the beauty of it. It has no technique and therefore no authority. When you learn about yourself, watch yourself, watch the way you walk, how you eat, what you say, the gossip, the hate, the jealousy - if you are aware of all that in yourself, without any choice, that is part of meditation.
So meditation can take place when you are sitting in a bus or walking in the woods full of light and shadows, listening to the singing of birds or looking at the face of your wife or child. In the understanding of meditation there is love, and love is not the product of systems, of habits, of following a method. Love cannot be cultivated by thought. Love can perhaps come into being when there is complete silence, a silence in which the meditator is entirely absent; and the mind can be silent only when it understands its own movement as thought and feeling. To understand this movement of thought and feeling there can be no condemnation in observing it. To observe in such a way is the discipline, and that kind of discipline is fluid, free, not the discipline of conformity.
Be like water making its way through cracks. Do not be assertive, but adjust to the object, and you shall find a way around or through it. If nothing within you stays rigid, outward things will disclose themselves.
Empty your mind, be formless. Shapeless, like water. If you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup. You put water into a bottle and it becomes the bottle. You put it in a teapot, it becomes the teapot. Now, water can flow or it can crash. Be water, my friend.