Ramakrishna used to say that if a figure made out of salt tries to fathom the depth of the ocean , it will fail. It will begin the search but it will never reach to the destination, because it is after all made of salt – and as it falls into the oceans depths, it is dissolving, becoming absorbed. By the time it has reached a certain depth it will be gone – nothing will remain, nothing can return and say how deep the ocean is.
Yet only salt can come to know the depths of the ocean. If you throw in a stone it will reach to the depths, but it will remain untouched by the soul of the ocean. How can something which cannot dissolve feel the ocean’s soul? How can something which cannot disappear, which cannot be absorbed, measure the real depth of the ocean?
The ocean has one kind of depth that can be measured in feet and miles, and it has another depth, an existential, oceanic depth, which cannot be measured in that way. Only salt will be able to measure that depth because it is willing to be dissolved, to merge, to lose itself. It will become one with the ocean through being absorbed. In that very absorption it will come to know the ocean. But then there will be no way to come back and talk about it.
-Osho from ‘The Voice of Silence’