Most people identify their bodies as being themselves. They think, “I am the body,” and everyone wants to be happy. So the question is, how does a person who thinks he’s his body, how does he think he’s going to find happiness? What’s his conclusion? If you are your body and you want to be satisfied, then how are you going to become satisfied? One must conclude that in order to find satisfaction, you must satisfy your body; satisfy your senses.
I am my body, I want to be happy. I am my senses and I want to be satisfied. So all I need to do is satisfy my senses and I will be satisfied. This is natural, it’s logical, it makes sense. The only problem is, are you the body?
Now everywhere in the world everyone is trying, struggling very hard for what? Sense gratification. More and more bodily sense flashes. Why? We all know why, because we think it’s going to make us happy. The more sense flashes I have, the more sense enjoyment I have, the happier I will be. Otherwise why would we all be chasing after more and more sense flashes?
I mean, obviously we’re not doing it because we think it’s going to make us unhappy. The whole world isn’t mad after sense flashes because we think it’s going to make us miserable. The whole world is after more and more economic development; even at the cost of our peace of mind. In some third world countries, the people are willing to give up anything for soda pop, cigarettes, movie shows. They’re willing to give up the quality of the air they breathe even. They’re willing to accept so much noise in the atmosphere; so much noise it drives you nuts. What for? So that we can get more sense flashes. And the more sense enjoyment we get, the happier we’ll be. Therefore everyone is striving after this. This is the goal of our lives because we believe that we are the body. I think I’m the senses; if I make my senses happy, I will be happy. This is the general consensus.
But we’re never satisfied. In the western world we have so much facility; upper middle class, middle class people and even poor people - compared to the people in third world countries. We have so much facility for sense enjoyment, but we’re not satisfied. If we were satisfied how come so many of us are always trying to drown ourselves in alcohol and drugs? Why is that? Why is it that a person, he’s got his big house and he’s got his two cars in his two car garage with a big refrigerator, big freezer, everything, right? He’s got everything he could want. Why isn’t he happy? Why are so many young people who were brought up in upper middle class or middle class homes and have refrigerators full of ice-cream and goodies and this and that and their own TV in their own room and their own automobile and their own wardrobe of so many clothes. But they’re not satisfied with it. They’re experiencing so much emptiness they’ve got to smoke dope all day long.
Just try to picture somebody from a third world country who has not been exposed to this yet and give them a bird’s eye view. We pluck them out from their little world there and we take them on a little trip here and we show them here’s a beautiful house in a beautiful neighborhood with a nice lawn, two cars, everything’s just beautiful. It looks so nice, let’s go down into the house. Okay let’s look inside the house and take a tour of the house. We go to the kitchen. Immaculate kitchen! He’d never seen a kitchen like that, probably doesn’t know what it is, you would have to explain it to them. Then the refrigerator, they don’t have those. Then the freezer, they can’t believe it. They’re just about ready to faint already. Then you take them to the living room. Then the two or three bathrooms. They can’t even believe it. They don’t even have indoor plumbing. I mean, the bathroom it is so clean you don’t even want to walk in there. It’s so shiny it looks like a temple or something. Then we go to the master bedroom and another bedroom. Then we go to another bedroom and there’s this kid shooting heroin. Our visitor wouldn’t be able to understand that. You couldn’t explain that to him because he hasn’t had all the goodies yet. He’s still in the illusion that this would make him happy if he had all that stuff. But this kid, he’s had all that stuff from the time he was born. It didn’t satisfy him.
It should make us very seriously consider if the materialist philosophy - the philosophy, in other words - that I am matter, I am material, I am this material body - if it’s correct, if it’s true, if it’s right, then how come this kid has a heroin needle in his arm? How come the kids down the street are alcoholics? How come this other person right down here committed suicide? They’re all well to do; they’re wealthy people. How come they’re committing suicide? Why are they alcoholics? It doesn’t fit. It’s not logical. It doesn’t make sense. If I am the body and I have all these goodies, I have all the sense enjoyment I could possibly want, I mean I’ve got so much sex I can’t even walk, you know. I’m eating so much food, I eat and I eat and I eat and I’m so full. I’m so full that I can’t eat anymore yet I’m still empty inside. I’m still not satisfied and I know that even the guys up on the top aren’t satisfied. I mean even the highest, highest, highest guys aren’t satisfied.” You’ve got the highest guys in the rock’n’roll world, the most famous, the most worshipped, who can get anything and everything, the Rolling Stones, singing, “I still can’t get no satisfaction.”
If a person was their body then satisfying their body would satisfy them. If I am my body then sense gratification will satisfy me. The very fact that sense gratification does not satisfy me is further evidence that I am not my body. I’m distinct from my body. The body is a vehicle I’m using, but I am not my body. This is the only logical conclusion. Thank you very much.