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On laughter and celebration

DELETED TEXT AND CHAPTERS ARE MARKED IN RED AND ADDED TEXT HAS BEEN MARKED IN BLUE

LIFE’S MYSTERIES

The Rebellious Spirit
Chapter #10
Chapter title: Freedom opens the door of responsibility
15 February 1987 am in Chuang Tzu Auditorium
Archive code: 8702150
ShortTitle: SPIRIT10
Audio: Yes
Video: Yes
Length: 90 mins
In the whole of existence it is only man who can giggle and laugh. Laughter is part of the highest consciousness achieved by man.
You are right: t The sun rises, but there is no laughter; the birds sing, but there is no giggling. They are far lower as far as consciousness is concerned. Your saints also don’t laugh; in your churches also there is no giggling. It is not an improvement for consciousness, but a going downwards, backwards.
Seriousness is a disease.
Only the sick mind is serious.
The youthful, the young, laugh, dance, sing, giggle. But with the serious mind, man loses that beautiful foam that comes on the ocean waves. Although it is just foam, without that foam those waves will look naked. That foam makes almost a crown to the waves. With the white foam, tidal waves coming towards the shore remind one of Himalayan peaks, where snow has never melted eternal snow. And the whiteness of the foam gives a beauty, a life, a certain dance to the wave.
I am against all those religions which make you serious and almost all the religions do make you serious. They destroy all possibilities of laughter: laughter seems to be profane. But I say unto you: Laughter is the most sacred phenomenon on the earth because it is the highest peak of consciousness.
It is not only the religions, but almost all kinds of serious people whether they are religious or not are serious because the society gives respectability to seriousness.
If you meet Jesus with the cross… long British face I sometimes wonder why he was born in Judea. Britain was the right place for him; he is British, out-and-out. He never laughed. And then that serious cross… and not only does he has have to carry it, he is telling his disciples that everybody should carry his cross on his shoulders. Why should everybody carry his cross on his shoulders? wWhy not a guitar? My people are going to carry guitars on their shoulders.
But for thousands of years seriousness has been so much respected that a few countries have completely forgotten how to laugh. It is said that when you tell a joke to an Englishman, he laughs twice: first he laughs so that nobody sees that he has not understood the joke, and then secondly he laughs in the middle of the night, when he gets it.
If you tell the same joke to a German, he laughs only once just for etiquette’s sake; because everybody is laughing, he has to make the effort. Deep down he cannot understand why people are laughing. But he never gets it, so the second time is out of the question. If you tell the same joke to a Jew, rather than laughing he will say, Wait, don’t waste time! It is an old joke, and moreover, you are telling it all wrong.
People behave differently, because they have been conditioned differently. I have been searching for a joke that is purely Indian, but I have not been able to find one;, all jokes are imported. It is good that there is no taxation on imported jokes; otherwise, in India there would be no jokes at all.
The Indians have been too serious about things, about God, about the ultimate. You cannot conceive of Gautam Buddha laughing, or Shankaracharya laughing, or Mahavira laughing that is impossible. I have always wondered about it… because some of the first statues in the world were made of Gautam Buddha; those are the most ancient statues.
And why have they chosen cold marble to make the statues of Buddha? Buddha is cold. Laughter brings warmth; seriousness slowly, slowly becomes coldness inhumanly cold. And the white marble represents his face exactly because he never showed any emotions on his face; nobody ever saw tears in his eyes, a smile on his lips. Even while he was alive, he was just a marble statue.
India has been very serious for centuries, and that is one of the causes of its degradation. Silence is beautiful but silence does not mean seriousness. Silence can be full of smiles; in fact, authentic silence is bound to be full of smiles, joy. People who have been experiencing ecstasy even they have not burst into laughter.
This is contrary to my own experience, and it is contrary to the existential law.
The first thing that happens to the enlightened person is a deep belly laughter for the sheer stupidity that he has been searching for something which is within himself. He has been carrying it for centuries within himself, and he never looked there; and he looked all over the world, carrying within himself the treasure which was available within a minute.
Just close your eyes… be silent… and it is there.
I cannot conceive that anybody finding it within himself should not have laughed, but the stories of hundreds of awakened people don’t mention it. Perhaps they laughed, but they did not allow the laughter to reach out; they controlled it.
Just because the whole tradition says that the higher you go into consciousness, the more serious you become…. But I know from my own experience and logically it is relevant that if you have your glasses and are looking all around for them, and then suddenly you become aware that they are sitting on your nose, it is impossible not to giggle, not to laugh.
The spiritual experience is no different from that. : It is just sitting on your nose and you are searching for it all over the world. You are missing it because you are searching all over the world. Just sit down, forget the world, and it is there. Who is searching?…
The seeker is the sought.
The hunter is the hunted.
The observer is the observed.
But because you never look withinwards… and you cannot find it anywhere outside neither on the Himalayan peaks nor on the moon naturally, failure after failure will make you serious, sad, as if you are not adequate enough, capable enough to find it. The truth is: you are not finding it because it is not outside you.
So all paths are wrong. Wherever you go you will find failure and nothing else. Drop going, stop searching; be calm and quiet. First one should look into oneself. If you cannot find it there, then it seems logical that you should move further away. But anyone who has ever looked withinwards has always found it there.
And in this finding, there is going to be a great laugh at yourself, because existence has played really a great joke.
There is an old story: When God created the world he used to live in the world, in the marketplace. But his life was becoming more and more a torture, because people were continuously coming with complaints: somebody’s wife is sick, somebody’s child has died, somebody is not getting employment all kinds, all sorts of complaints and complaints. And people were not even concerned whether it was day or night: twenty-four hours a day he was listening to the complaints and, naturally, losing his marbles.
Finally he asked his advisers. They said, The only way is this.…. In the first place, it was wrong for you to create the world; in the second place, it was wrong for you to live in the world. Now escape; otherwise these people are going to kill you.
But he said, Where to escape to?
Somebody suggested, Go to Everest!
He said, You don’t know the future. I know past, present, future: soon a guy Edmund Hillary will reach there. And once he sees me, soon the same trouble will start: buses, roads, airports, restaurants, hotels all around… because people will be coming there to complain about their problems and troubles. The same thing will start.
Somebody said, Then it is better you go to the moon.
He said, You don’t understand: there is not a single place in the whole world where man is not going to reach some day or other.
One old adviser, who rarely used to speak, whispered in the ear of God, I know about one place where man will never reach: you just get inside him. He will look everywhere, but he will not look within himself.
And God said, That seems to be sensible. And since then he has been living within you.
Now I have told you the secret, it is up to you: if you want to go and meet him, go within! But don’t complain. In fact, he will be very happy to see you, because he has not seen very many people in thousands of years only once in a while.
And the people who have reached him have reached by becoming silent, alert, conscious. They don’t complain they giggle, they laugh. And I say to you: God joins in the laughter with you.
But it has to be an experience; otherwise it will be only a belief and I don’t want to create any belief system. I am simply telling you my own experience; you can make it your own experience too.
Yoga: The Alpha and the Omega, Vol 4
Chapter #2
Chapter title: You are already that….
22 April 1975 am in Buddha Hall
Archive code: 7504220
ShortTitle: YOGA402
Audio: Yes
Video: No
Length: 94 mins
YOU ARE AT THE PEAK OF CONSCIOUSNESS, YOU CAN CELEBRATE, YOU ARE CELEBRATING. BUT HOW CAN THE ORDINARY PERSON SHARE WITH YOU IN CELEBRATION?

 You are at the peak of consciousness, you can celebrate, you are celebrating. But how can the ordinary person share with you in celebration?

Nobody is ordinary. Who told you that you are ordinary.? From where have you got the notion that you are ordinary? Everybody is extraordinary! This is how it should be. God never created ordinary persons. How can God create ordinary persons? Everybody is special, extraordinary. But remember not to feed your ego with it. K It is not on your part that you are extraordinary, it is on the part of God. You come out of the total, you remain rooted in the total, you dissolve back into the total and the total is extraordinary, incomparable. You are also incomparable, but all the religions, the so-called religions, have tried to make you feel ordinary. This is a trick to provoke your ego. Try to understand this: the moment somebody says that you are ordinary, he creates a desire in you to become extraordinary, because you start feeling inferior.
Just the other day a man was here and he asked me, ‘What is the purpose of life? Unless there is a special purpose for me, how can I live? If there is a special purpose, then life is significant. If there is no special purpose, then life is meaningless.’ He was asking, ‘For what special purpose has God created me? What have I been sent into the world to do?’ This is the ego asking. He feels ordinary; nothing special. ‘Then how can one live?’
You have to be peaks of egos, only then does life seem significant. Life is significant, and there is no purpose in it! It is a purposeless significance, like a song, or a dance like a flower; for no purpose at all it is flowering, for nobody special it is flowering. Even if nobody passes by, the road, the flower will flower, the fragrance will be spread into the winds. Even if nobody ever comes to smell it, it is irrelevant. The very flowering is the significance, not any purpose.
But you have been taught that you are ordinary:. ‘Become great poets, become great painters, become great leaders of men, great politicians, become great saints.’ As you are, all the religions condemn you, ‘You are nothing, a worm on the earth. Become something! Prove that you are something before God’ as if to prove your mettle. But I tell you that this is absolutely absurd. These religions have been talking irreligion. There is no need for you to prove anything. The very phenomenon that God has produced you is enough; you are accepted. God has mothered you, it is enough. What more can you prove? You need not be great painters, you need not be great leaders, you need not be great saints. There is no need to be great, because you are already great. This is my emphasis: you are already that which you ought to be. You may not have realized it, that I know. You may not have encountered your own reality, that I know. You may not have looked within yourself and seen the emperor within, that I know. You may be thinking that you are a beggar and trying to be an emperor. But as I see you, you are already the emperor.
There is no need to postpone celebration. Immediately, right this moment you can celebrate. Nothing else is needed. To celebrate, life is needed and life you have. To celebrate, being is needed and being you have. To celebrate, trees and birds and stars are needed, and they are there. What else do you need? If you are crowned and caged in a golden pa1ace, then will you celebrate? In fact, then it will become more impossible. Have you ever seen an emperor laughing and dancing and singing in the street? No, he is caged, imprisoned: manners, etiquette….
Somewhere, Bertrand Russell has written that when for the first time he visited a primitive community of aboriginals living deep in some hills, he felt jealous, very, very jealous. He felt that the way they danced… it was as if everybody were an emperor. They had no crowns, but they had made crowns with leaves and with flowers. Every woman was a queen. They didn’t have Kohinoors, but whatsoever they had was too much, was enough. They danced the whole night and then they fell asleep, there on the dancing-ground. By the morning they were again back to work. They worked the whole day, and again by the evening they were ready to celebrate, to dance. Russell says, ‘That day, I felt really jealous. I cannot do this.’
Something has gone wrong. Something frustrates within you; you cannot dance, you cannot sing, something withholds. You live a crippled life. It has never been meant for you to be crippled, but you live a crippled life, you live a paralyzed life. And you go on thinking that being ordinary, how can you celebrate? There is nothing special in you. But who told you that to celebrate something special is needed? In fact, the more you are after the special, the more and more it will become difficult for you to dance.
Be ordinary. Nothing is wrong with ordinariness, because in your very ordinariness you are extraordinary. Don’t bother about the conditions to decide when you will celebrate. If you bother about fulfilling certain conditions, do you think that then you will celebrate? You will never celebrate, you will die a beggar. Why not right now? What are you lacking? This is my observation: if you can start right now, suddenly the energy is flowing. And the more you dance, the more it is flowing, the more capable you become. The ego needs conditions to be fulfilled, not life. Birds can sing and dance, ordinary birds. Have you ever seen any extraordinary birds singing and dancing? Do they ask that they first have to be a Ravi Shankar or a Yehudi Menuhin? Do they ask that first they have to be great singers and go to colleges of music to learn, and then they will sing? They simply dance and simply sing; no training is needed.
Man is born with the capacity to celebrate. When even birds can celebrate, why not you? But you create unnecessary barriers, you create a hurdle race. There are no barriers. You put them there and then you say, ‘Unless we cross them and jump them, how can we dance?’ You stand against yourself, you stand divided against yourself, you are an enemy to yourself. All the preachers in the world go on saying that you are ordinary, so how can you dare to celebrate? You have to wait. First be a Buddha, first be a Jesus, a Mohammed, and then you can.
But just the opposite is the case: if you can dance, you are already the Buddha; if you can celebrate, you are already the Mohammed; if you can be blissful, you are Jesus. The contrary is not true; the contrary is a false logic. It says: first be a Buddha, then you can celebrate. But how will you be a Buddha without celebrating? I say to you, ‘Celebrate, forget all Buddhas!’ In your very celebration you will find that you have yourself become a Buddha. Zen mystics go on saying, ‘Buddha is a barrier; forget about him.’ Bodhidharma used to say to his disciples, ‘Whenever you say the name of Buddha, immediately wash your mouth. It is dirty, the very word is dirty.’ And Bodhidharma was a disciple of Buddha. He was right because he knew that you can create idols, ideals, out of the very word ‘buddha’. And you will then wait for lives and lives to become a Buddha first, and then you will celebrate. That is not ever going to happen.
One Zen monk, Lin Chi, used to say to his disciples, ‘When you move into meditation, always remember that if you meet Buddha on the way, immediately cut him in two! Don’t allow him a single moment, otherwise he will take hold of you and he will become the barrier.’ A disciple asked, ‘But when I am meditating and Buddha comes’ and Buddha comes to Buddhists, as Jesus comes to Christians; not the real Buddha, he is nowhere to be found ‘how am I to cut him? From where will I get the sword?’ The M master said, ‘From where you got your Buddha imagination. g Get the sword from the same place, cut the Buddha in two and move ahead.’
Remember this, that the teachings of the awakened ones, all the awakened ones and all of their teachings, can be summarized into a simple sentence, and that sentence is: you are already that which you can be. You may take many lives to realize it; that is for you to determine. But if you are alert, not even a single moment is to be lost. ‘Thou art that, tattwarnasi swetketu, Tat twam asi, Swetketu–you are already that, there is no need to become. Becoming, the very effort to become something, is illusory.
You are, you are not to become. But preachers tell you that you are ordinary and they create a desire in you to become extraordinary. They make you feel inferior and create a desire to become superior. They create an inferiority complex and then you are in their grip. Then they teach you how to become superior. First they condemn you, create a guilt within you, and then they show you the path to be virtuous.
You will really be in difficulty with me because your mind would like the same, because that gives you time. And I don’t give you time. I say that you are already that. Everything is ready. Start the feast, celebrate it! Your mind says, ‘But I have to get ready, a little time is needed.’ That’s why, in this postponement, preachers come in. Through this gap they enter into your being and destroy you. They say, ‘Yes, time is needed. How can you celebrate right now? Prepare, train yourself. Many things have to be discarded, many things have to be improved. You need a long training and discipline. It may take many lives with much long training and discipline. K It may take many lives, and only then will you be able to celebrate. How can you celebrate right now?’
They appeal to you because then you can relax and you can say, ‘Okay, so if it is a question of a long time, right now is not the problem. We can go on doing whatsoever we are doing.’ Some day in the future, a golden tomorrow, a rainbow-like thing…. When it is achieved, you will dance.
Meanwhile you can be miserable; meanwhile you can allow yourself to be miserable; meanwhile you can enjoy self-torture it is up to you. If you decide for misery, no need to create so much philosophy around it. You can simply say, ‘I enjoy misery.’ It is really surprising that nobody ever asks, ‘How can I be miserable right now? A discipline is needed, training is needed. I will go to Patanjalis, and ask great M masters, and then I will learn how to be miserable.’ It seems that to be miserable needs no training; you are born to be miserable. But then why does bliss need training? Both are two aspects of the same coin. If you can be miserable without training, you can be blissful without training. Be natural, loose, and just feel things. And don’t wait start! Even if you feel that you don’t know the right steps, start dancing.
I am not saying that dancing is going to be your art. For art, training may be needed. I am simply saying that dancing is just an attitude. Even not knowing the right steps, you can dance. And if you can dance, who bothers about the right steps! dancing in itself is enough. It is an overflowing of your energy. If it becomes an art by itself, it’s okay; if it doesn’t become, it’s okay. In itself it is enough, more than enough. Nothing else is needed.
So don’t say to me, ‘You are at the peak of consciousness.’ Where are you? Where do you think you are.? Your valley is in your dreams. Your darkness is because you remain with closed eyes; otherwise you are there where I am. It is not that you are in the valley and I am at the peak. I am at the peak, and you are also at the peak, but you dream about the valley. I live in Poona, you also live in Poona. But when you fall asleep, you start dreaming about London and New York and Calcutta, and you visit thousands of places. I don’t go anywhere; in my sleep also, I am in Poona. But you go wandering. You are at the same peak where I am, it is just that you remain with closed eyes.
You say, t ‘It is too dark.’ tItalk about light and you say, ‘You must be somewhere else on a high peak. We are ordinary people living in darkness.’ But I can see that you are sitting on the same peak with closed eyes. You have to be beaten out of your sleep, shocked. And then you will see that the valley never existed. Darkness was not there; only your eyes were closed.
Zen Masters do well. They carry a staff and they beat their disciples. And it has happened many times that when a staff is descending on the head of a disciple, suddenly he opens his eyes and starts laughing. He had never known that he was on the same peak. It was a dream that he was seeing.
Be alert. And if you want to be alert, celebration will be very, very helpful. When I say celebrate, what do I mean? I mean that whatsoever you do, don’t do it as a duty, do it from your love; don’t do it as a burden, do it as a celebration. You can eat as if it is a duty: long-faced, dull, dead, insensitive. You can throw food inside yourself without ever tasting, without ever feeling for it. It is life; you live through it. Don’t be so insensitive to it. Indians have said, ‘anam brahman,’ Annam Brahman– food is Brahman. This is celebration: you are eating b Brahman, you are eating God through food, because only God exists. When you are taking a shower, it is God showering because only God exists. When you go for a morning walk, it is God on a morning walk. And the breeze is also God, and the trees are also God everything is so D divine. How can you be a longface, dead and dull, moving in life as if you are carrying a burden?

When I say celebrate, I mean become more and more sensitive to everything. In life, dance should not be apart. The whole life should become a dance; it should be a dance. You can go for a walk and dance.

Allow life to enter into you, become more open and vulnerable, feel more, sense more. Small things filled with such wonders are lying all around. Watch a small child. Leave him in the garden and just watch. That should be your way also ; so wonderful, wonder-filled: running to catch this butterfly, running to catch that flower, playing with mud, rolling in the sand. From everywhere the D divine is touching the child.
If you can live in wonder you will be capable of celebration. Don’t live in knowledge, live in wonder. You don’t know anything. Life is surprising; everywhere, it is a continuous surprise. Live it as a surprise, an unpredictable phenomenon: every moment is new. Just try, give it a try! You will not lose anything if you give it a try, and you may gain everything. But you have become addicted to misery. You cling to your misery as if it is something very precious. Look at your own clinging.
As I told you, there are two types of persons: sadists and masochists. Sadists go on torturing others, masochists go on torturing themselves. There is a question that somebody has asked:, ‘Why, why are people like that, either torturing others or torturing themselves? Why is there so much aggression and violence in life?’
It is a negative state. You torture because you cannot enjoy. You torture, become violent, because you cannot love. You become cruel because you don’t know how to become compassionate. It is a negative state. The same energy that is cruelty will become compassion. With an unalert mind the same energy becomes violence; with an alert mind the same energy becomes compassion. In sleep the same energy becomes torture, either of yourself or of somebody else. When you are awake, the same energy becomes love, for yourself and for others also. Life gives you an opportunity, but there are thousands of causes for something to go wrong.
Have you ever observed that if somebody is in misery, you show sympathy, you feel much love? It is not the right kind of love, but you show sympathy. If somebody is happy, celebrating, blissful, you feel jealous, you feel bad. It is very difficult to sympathize with a happy man. It is very difficult to feel good for a happy man; you feel good when somebody is unhappy. At least you can think that you are not so unhappy and you have an upper hand; you show sympathy.
A child is born and the child starts learning things. Sooner or later he discovers that whenever he is unhappy, he attracts the attention of the whole family. He becomes the center and everybody feels sympathy for him, everybody feels love for him. Whenever he is happy and healthy and everything is good, nobody bothers about him. On the contrary, everybody seems to be cross. A child may be jumping and dancing, and the whole family is cross; the child may be lying in bed ill with fever, and the whole family is sympathetic. The child starts learning that somehow to be ill, to be miserable, is good; to be happy and dancing and jumping and to be alive is bad. He is learning and this is how you have learned.
To me, when a child is happy, jumping, the whole family should be happy and jumping with the child. And when a child is ill, care should be taken of the child but no sympathy should be shown. Care is okay; sympathy, no. No-love, indifference, will look very hard on the surface: the child is m ill and you are indifferent. Take care, give medicine, but be indifferent, because a very subtle phenomenon is going on. If you feel sympathy and compassion and love, and you show it to the child, you are destroying the child forever. Now he will cling to misery, misery becomes valuable. And whenever he jumps and dances and screams all around in happiness and runs all over the house, everybody is cross. At that moment, celebrate, be with him, and the whole world will be different.
But up until now society has existed on the wrong lines, and those lines go on persisting. That’s why you cling to misery. You ask me, ‘How is it possible for ordinary beings like us to celebrate right now, here and now?’ No, it is not possible. Nobody has ever allowed you to celebrate. Your parents persist in your mind. Up u Until the very moment of your death your father and mother follow you. Continuously they are after you, even though they are be dead. Parents can be very, very destructive; up until now they have been. I am not saying that your parents are responsible, because that is not the question: their parents did the same to them. The whole structure is wrong, psychologically wrong; there are reasons for them also. That’s why such a wrong thing goes on and on and cannot be stopped. It seems to be impossible.
Of course, there are reasons for it. A father has his own reasons: he may be reading his newspaper and the chi1d jumps and screams and laughs, but a father should be more under standing understanding. A newspaper is worthless. Even if you can read it silently, what are you going to get out of it? Throw the news paper newspaper! But the father is in politics, in business, and he has to know about what is going on. He is ambitious and the newspaper is part of his ambition. If one has to achieve some ambitions, seek some goals, one has to know the world. The child seems to be a disturbance.
The mother is cooking food and the child goes on asking questions and goes on jumping, and she becomes cross. I know that there are problems; the mother has to cook food. But the child should be the first preference, because a child is going to be the whole world, a child is going to be the to morrow tomorrow, a child is going to be the coming humanity. He should be the first, the priority should be his. Newspapers can be read later on, and even if not read, you are not going to miss much. It is the same nonsense every day: places change, names change, but the same nonsense continues. Your newspapers are just mad. The food can be delayed a little, but the curiosity of the child should not be delayed, should not be postponed, because right now he was in a mood and the mood may not come again. Right now he is hot and something is possible. But do you see mothers dancing with their children, jumping, enjoying rolling on the floor? – no No. Mothers are serious beings, fathers are very serious; they carry the whole world on their shoulders. And the child lives in a totally different world. You are forcing him to enter into your sad, miserable attitude to life. He could have grown as a child, he could have kept the quality, the quality of wonder, surprise, and the quality to be here and now, in the moment.
This I call the real revolution. No other revolution is going to help man: French, Russian or Chinese, no revolution is going to help man; they have not helped. Basically the same pattern between the parent and the child continues, and there is the cause. You can create a communist world, but it will not be much different from the capitalist world. The labels will be different only on the surface. You can create a socialist world, you can create a Gandhian world, but it will not be different because the basic revolution is between the mother, the father, and the child. Somewhere within the parents and the child is the link; and if that link is not changed, the world will go on moving in the same rut.
When I say this I don’t mean that I am giving you an excuse to be miserable. I am simply giving you the explanation so that you can become aware. So don’t try to say in your mind, ‘Now what can be done? I am already forty or fifty or sixty, my parents are dead and even if they were alive, I cannot undo the past. It has happened, so I have to live as I am.’ No, if you understand the thing, you can simply drop out of it. There is no need to cling to it.
You can become a child again. Jesus is right when he says, ‘Only those who are like small children will be able to enter the Kingdom of my God’ absolutely right! Only those who are like small children….
This is the revolution: to make everybody like a small child. The body may grow but the quality of consciousness should remain innocent, virgin, like a child.
You are already where you need to be, you are already in that space which you are seeking. Just make a little effort to come out of your clinging to misery. Don’t invest in misery; invest in celebration. You take one step towards life and life takes one thousand towards you. Just take one step out of your clinging to misery. The mind will go on pulling you backwards. Just be indifferent to the mind and tell the mind, ‘Wait, I have lived enough with you, now let me live without mind.’ That’s what a child is: living without mind, or, living with nomind.

–From Yoga: The alpha and the Omega, Vol. 4, Discourse 2

 
 

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