Acting Is One Of The Most Spiritual Profession


1463756_427835373982640_768633927_n Every child makes funny faces. Have you watched? Leave him in the bathroom and watch from the keyhole, and he will make funny faces. In fact he is enjoying having a face, trying to manipulate it in many ways, playing with it. And he can play because he is separate. When he is making a funny face, he knows “I am not this funny man. This face is only the face; I am behind it. This is just a mask.”

And even grown-up people do it in the bathroom. If nobody is watching, everybody is tempted to do a little…. In the mirror, one wants to make funny faces. Nothing wrong in it — it simply shows that you cannot adjust yourself with the body, that the body is not all, that you are far beyond it, that you can play with the body like a mask. It is a mask.

In fact there are many old meditations which make use of making funny faces. You can make it a meditation — in Tibet, it is one of the oldest traditions. Keep a big mirror: stand naked, make faces, do funny things — and watch. Just doing it and watching for fifteen, twenty minutes, you will be surprised. You will start feeling you are separate from this. If you are not separate, then how can you do all these things? Then the body is just something in your hand — you can play with it, this way and that.

That’s why I always say mimicry, mime, is a spiritual art. And soon we are going to open a small school of mime. If you can learn how to make faces, if you can act with your body in many ways, you will be suddenly freed from the body; your identity will be broken.

This is my experience. Many people come to me and ask, “Why do so many actors come to you?” My experience is this, that acting is one of the most spiritual professions in the world. Because an actor moves into so many actings — sometimes he is this, sometimes that — so many identities that he becomes loose. Then one day he suddenly starts thinking, “Who am I? One day I am Abraham Lincoln, another day I am George Washington, another day I become this and that,” and every day he goes on changing. In one film he is one, in another film he is another. Sometimes he is a saint, and sometimes he is a sinner. Only then can he be a perfect actor…

 By and by he comes to know, a good actor comes to know, that all are acts. “Then who am I?” In ordinary life you are identified with one thing: you are a doctor, so you are a doctor — morning, evening, night, you are a doctor; for thirty, forty years, you are a doctor — you become fixed with the identity, with the role. It is a role too — but you never change, so you become fixed. You forget; the role becomes your being. When a person has to change many roles, he becomes loose. by and by the question arises: Who am I? All these are roles — then who am I? who is this man who some day becomes a sinner and some day becomes a saint? And some day plays the role of a murderer, and some day becomes a great lover? Who is this man? Who is this being behind all these actings?

To me, acting is one of the most spiritual professions. And if you take life as an acting, you will start moving towards spirituality. Take life as an acting, you will start moving towards spirituality. Take life as acting, a great drama. The world is a vast stage. You are a mother — that is only one role. You are a father — that is only one role. You are a businessman — another role. You are a brother to somebody — another role. You are a son, husband — another role… a thousand and one roles if you watch. And you go on changing your faces. When your servant comes to see you, you have a different face.

When your boss comes to see you, you have a different face. Watch it, become a little more alert, and you will see you have a thousand and one faces, continuously changing. It is automatic. You need not do anything — they change automatically. You have become very skillful. Once you understand this, you start moving inwards where there is no face at all.


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