Everything in its Right Place – Osho

You always talk against the mind – that we should drop it, tell it to shut up, that it is not needed in the search for truth. You seem to regret that none of your sannyasins is a Nobel Prize winner and you give us unfertilized eggs to nourish our brains. Hence I almost feel guilty when I make an attempt to become informed about one thing or another, though it seems almost impossible to survive in the market place totally ignorant. What is the mind for? Is it really totally mischievous?

Prem Mandira, mind is one of the most significant things in life, but only as a servant, not as a master.

The moment the mind becomes your master, then the problems arise; then it displaces your heart, displaces your being, takes over the whole possession of you. Then rather than following your orders, it starts ordering you.

I am not saying to destroy the mind. It is the most evolved phenomenon in existence. I am saying beware that the servant does not become the master. Remember your being comes first, your heart comes second, your mind comes third – that is the balanced personality of an authentic human being.

Mind is logic… immensely useful, and in the marketplace you cannot exist without the mind. And I have never said that you should not use your mind in the marketplace – you should use it. But you should use it; you should not be used by it. And the difference is great….

It is mind which has given you all technology, all science, but because the mind has given so much, it has claimed to be the master of your being. That’s where the mischief begins; it has completely closed the doors of your heart.

Heart is not useful; it has no purpose to fulfill. It is just like a rose flower. The mind can give you bread, but the mind cannot give you joy. It cannot make you rejoice in life. It is very serious, it cannot even tolerate laughter. And a life without laughter has fallen below human standards. It has become subhuman because it is only man, in the whole existence, who is capable of laughing.

Laughter indicates consciousness and its highest growth. Animals cannot laugh, trees cannot laugh, and the people who remain encaged in the mind – the saints, the scientists, the so-called great leaders – they cannot laugh either. They are all too serious, and seriousness is a disease. It is the cancer of your soul; it is destructive.

And because we are in the hands of the mind, all its creativity has gone in the service of destruction; people are dying from starvation, and the mind is trying to pile up more nuclear weapons. People are hungry, and the mind is trying to reach to the moon.

Mind is absolutely without any compassion. For compassion, for love, for joy, for laughter… a heart, freed from the imprisonment of mind, is needed.

Heart has a higher value. It is not of any use in the marketplace, because the marketplace is not your temple; the marketplace is not your life’s meaning. The marketplace is the lowest of all the activities of human beings.

Jesus is right when he says, “Man cannot live by bread alone.” But mind can only provide bread. You can survive, but survival is not life. Life needs something more – a dance, a song, a joy.

Hence I want you to put everything in its right place: The heart should be listened to first if there is any kind of conflict between mind and heart. In any conflict between love and logic, then logic cannot be decisive, love has to be decisive. Logic cannot give you any juice – it is dry. It is good for calculations; it is good for mathematics and good for scientific technology. But it is not good for human relationships, not good for the growth of your inner potential.

Above your heart is your being. Just as mind is logic and the heart is love, being is meditation. Being is to know yourself. And by knowing yourself, to know the very meaning of existence.

Knowing the being, is bringing a light into the darkness of your inner world; and unless you are enlightened inside, all the light outside is of no use. Within you, there is just darkness, abysmal darkness, unconsciousness, and all your actions are going to arise out of that darkness, out of that blindness.

So when I say anything against mind, don’t misunderstand me. I am not against mind, and I don’t want you to destroy it. I want you to become an orchestra. The same musical instruments can create a hell of a noise if you don’t know how to create a symphony, how to create a synthesis, how to put things in their right place.

Being should be your ultimate… there is nothing beyond it – it is part of God within you. It will give you that which neither mind can give, nor the heart can give: It will give you silence. It will give you peace. It will give you serenity. It will give you blissfulness, and finally, a sense of being immortal. Knowing being, death becomes a fiction and life takes wings into eternity. A man who is unaware of his own being cannot be said to be really alive. He may be a useful mechanism, a robot….

Through meditation, search your being, your isness, your existence. Through love, through your heart, share your blissfulness – that’s what love is all about: Sharing your blissfulness, sharing your joy, sharing your dance, sharing your ecstasy.

Mind has its own function in the marketplace, but when you come home; your mind should not continue chattering. Just as you take off your business coat, your hat, your shoes, you should say to the mind, “Now be quiet, this is not your world.” This is not being against the mind. In fact, this is giving rest to the mind.

In the home, with your wife, with your husband, with your children, with your parents, with your friends, there is no need for the mind. The need is for an overflowing heart. Unless there is love overflowing in a house, it never becomes a home; it remains a house. And if in the home you can find a few moments for meditation, for experiencing your own being, it raises the home to the highest peak of being a temple.

The same house… for the mind is only a house; for the heart it becomes a home; for the being it becomes a temple. The house remains the same; you go through the changes – your vision changes, your dimension changes, your way of understanding and looking at things changes. And a house that is not all three, is incomplete, is poor.

A man that is not all three, in deep harmony – the mind serving the heart, the heart serving the being, and the being belonging to the intelligence spread all over existence…. People have called it God; I love to call it godliness. There is nothing above it.

I will read your question, Mandira. Do you remember the meaning of your name that I have given to you: Prem Mandira, “Love Temple”. In your question there are many misunderstandings.

You are saying, “Osho, You always talk against the mind.” I have to talk against the mind, because of you, because you are clinging so much to the mind. You drop clinging and I will never even mention the word.

I am tired of talking against it. It has not done any harm to me, it is not my enemy; it has served me perfectly. It is because of you that I have to go on and on, until one day you decide, “Let us try to put the mind aside.” And you say to it, “Shut up for the moment.” Unless you all get out of the cage of the mind, I will have to talk against it; although I am not against it.

“You are saying that we should drop it, tell it to shut up.” I say drop it if you want to meditate. And the moment you are going to the marketplace, pick it up. Who is preventing you? Is there a need that you should continually cling to it for twenty-four hours? – Because tomorrow you are going to the marketplace, so in the night you also have to keep it with you, under your blanket? Are you afraid that it will escape?

I say drop it because I want you to feel that you are the master. If you want to drop it you can drop it, and if you want to pick it up, you can pick it up. It is just a mechanism.

“You are saying that it is not needed in the search for truth.” It is not needed. As far as the search for truth is concerned, it is not needed. On the contrary, it is a hindrance.

And truth is not available in the marketplace; it is not something you can purchase, not something that you can steal, not something that you can borrow – it is something within you. But it is beyond the reach of the mind. The reach of the mind is only to outside things. As far as your inner world is concerned, mind is absolutely impotent. It is not its fault; it is not made for that purpose.

As far as truth is concerned, you need a state of no-mind – I mean no thought, not even a ripple in your consciousness, no disturbance – just absolute silence.

One discovers one’s truth only in silence, in aloneness. Even your mind will not be a witness to it.

And Mandira, you are absolutely wrong in saying, “You seem to regret that none of your sannyasins is a Nobel Prize winner.” Where you got the idea from, I don’t know.

I have certainly said that the vegetarians have not been able to get a single Nobel Prize. And the reason is that intelligence needs certain chemicals, certain proteins, which are not available in their vegetarian food. But I am not regretting it; I am simply stating a fact.

A Nobel Prize does not necessarily prove that somebody has achieved the highest consciousness. J. Krishnamurti did not receive it; Raman Maharishi did not receive it. Meher Baba did not get it. And these were people who reached to the highest peak; they belong to the same category as Gautam Buddha.

Even if Gautam Buddha was alive, he would not receive the Nobel Prize because the Nobel prize is a political game. It is not decided by the height of your intelligence; you need some political reasons. Even politicians like Kissinger have received the Nobel Prize, yet J. Krishnamurti’s name was never even mentioned. […]

I do not regret that none of my sannyasins is a politician. I am immensely happy that my sannyasins are not politicians. And the Nobel prize has not been given, at least up to now, even to a single meditator. Meditation does not come into their consideration.

A novelist can get a Nobel Prize. A film director can get a Nobel Prize. A scientist can get a Nobel Prize. A politician can get a Nobel Prize. But there is no category in the Nobel Prize for a man like Jesus, or Gautam Buddha, or Zarathustra, or Lao Tzu.

And even if these people are given Nobel prizes, they will laugh. To them your Nobel prizes are just like toys; they are good for children to play with. In what way can they enhance Gautam Buddha?

This is how people go on hearing things which are not sane… I have never regretted….

And you are saying, “I feel almost guilty when I make an attempt to become informed about one thing or another….” You are misunderstanding me completely. Who has told you, “Don’t become informed”? I have been telling you that by informing yourself you cannot attain to self-realization. But if you want to be an electrician, I will not suggest: Meditate, and you will become an electrician; meditate, and you will become a mechanic in a factory – you will need information.

There is no need to feel guilty. This is how your mind goes on making distortions, interpretations, and you go on carrying in your mind things which I have never said.

You are saying, “… it seems almost impossible to survive in the marketplace totally ignorant.” But who has said to you that in the marketplace be totally ignorant? Be as knowledgeable as possible.

In the marketplace innocence is not needed, neither is silence needed, nor is self-realization needed. The more you are knowledgeable, the more you will be successful.

I have been talking, not about the marketplace; I have been talking about the realization of who you are. This is not possible through gathering information; this is not possible through becoming knowledgeable – this is possible only if you become innocent.

And remember, innocence is not ignorance. There is a very fine demarcation, but the difference is immense. Ignorance means absence of knowledge, and innocence means presence of silence, presence of clarity. Ignorance is a negative thing. Innocence is a positive phenomenon. They don’t mean the same thing.

You can be innocent as far as your inner growth is concerned, and you can be knowledgeable as far as your outside world is concerned. They are two different things; they don’t clash with each other.

I have heard… two cowboys come upon an Indian lying on his stomach with his ear to the ground. One of the cowboys stops and says to the other, ”You see that Indian?” ”Yah,” says the other cowboy.

“Look,” says the first one, “he is listening to the ground. He can hear things for miles in any direction.”

Just then the Indian looks up, “Covered wagon,” he says, “about two miles away. Has two horses – one brown, one white – a man, a woman, a child, and household effects in the wagon.”

“Incredible!” says the cowboy to his friend. ”This Indian knows how far away they are, how many horses, what color they are, who is in the wagon, and what is in the wagon. Amazing!”
The Indian looks up and says, “Ran over me about a half hour ago.” […]

Prem Mandira, when you are listening to me, be alert that your mind does not start interpreting it. Just listen exactly to what I am saying; otherwise you can go on listening to me for years and still remain in the same vicious circle, moving round and round but going nowhere.
I really mean business. I want you to be the new man. The whole of humanity needs the new man; it is not only your need. It used to be the need of the individual in the past, but now we have come to a point where the new man is needed for the survival of the whole of humanity, for the survival of life itself on the earth.

-Osho

From The Razor’s Edge, Chapter 25

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

An MP3 audio file of this discourse can be downloaded from Osho.com, or you can read the entire book online at the Osho Library.

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So Why Not Do It Now – Osho

These days when you say the word ‘witness’, it has the same impact that the words ‘love’ or ‘relationship’ once had. I listen as if it is actually food to nourish something vital inside.

Is that the art of the Master – to arouse appetites one never knew one had?

Yes, Maneesha. The whole function of the master is to make you aware of your own thirst, of your own appetites, of your own longings that you have been avoiding facing. The whole art of the master is exactly to make you thirsty, hungry to reach to your own being – because unless you reach to your own being you will remain blind, and you will remain in darkness.

You will suffer birth and you will suffer death, and you will suffer all that happens between these two… to take you beyond suffering, to allow you the freedom of the whole sky… to create an intense urgency, because one never knows: I may not be here tomorrow; you may not be here tomorrow.

Tomorrow is so uncertain – one has to gather all his forces in this moment if he wants to do something.

Reaching to your center is not something that can be postponed. Everything else can be postponed, but not your entering into your center, because that is the very purpose of life. That is the only goal worth anything. And it is your source, so if you make an intense effort to search for it, you are bound to find it.

Nobody can miss being a buddha; one can only postpone. You can postpone for tomorrow, for another life – but sooner or later, this century or another century, you cannot ultimately avoid coming into contact with your own nature. So why not do it now?

-Osho

From Isan: No Footprints in the Blue Sky, Chapter Four

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

An MP3 audio file of this discourse can be downloaded from Osho.com, or you can read the entire book online at the Osho Library.

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Authentic Living – Osho

In the West we are constantly drilled with the aphorism: Don’t just stand there—do something! Yet, Buddha would say: Don’t just do something—stand there! The unconscious man reacts while the wise man watches. But what about spontaneity? Is spontaneity compatible with watching?

Buddha certainly says: Don’t just do something — stand there! But that is only the beginning of the pilgrimage, not the end. When you have learned how to stand, when you have learned how to be utterly silent, unmoving, undisturbed, when you know how to just sit…sitting silently, doing nothing, the spring comes and the grass grows by itself. But the grass grows, remember!

Action does not disappear: the grass grows by itself. The Buddha does not become inactive; great action happens through him, although there is no doer anymore. The doer disappears, the doing continues. And when there is no doer, the doing is spontaneous; it cannot be otherwise. It is the doer that does not allow spontaneity.

The doer means the ego, the ego means the past. When you act, you are always acting through the past, you are acting out of experience that you have accumulated, you are acting out of the conclusions that you have arrived at in the past. How can you be spontaneous? The past dominates, and because of the past you cannot even see the present. Your eyes are so full of the past, the smoke of the past is so much, that seeing is impossible. You cannot see! You are almost completely blind — blind because of the smoke, blind because of the past conclusions, blind because of knowledge.

The knowledgeable man is the most blind man in the world. Because he functions out of his knowledge, he does not see what the case is. He simply goes on functioning mechanically. He has learned something; it has become a ready-made mechanism in him…he acts out of it.

There is a famous story:

There were two temples in Japan, both enemies to each other, as temples have always been down the ages. The priests were so antagonistic that they had stopped even looking at each other. If they came across each other on the road, they would not look at each other. If they came across each other on the road they stopped talking; for centuries those two temples and their priests had not talked.

But both the priests had two small boys — to serve them, just for running errands. Both the priests were afraid that boys, after all, will be boys, and they might start becoming friends to each other.

The one priest said to his boy, “Remember, the other temple is our enemy. Never talk to the boy of the other temple! They are dangerous people — avoid them as one avoids a disease, as one avoids the plague. Avoid them!” The boy was always interested, because he used to get tired of listening to great sermons — he could not understand them. Strange scriptures were read, he could not understand the language. Great, ultimate problems were discussed. There was nobody to play with, nobody even to talk with. And when he was told, “Don’t talk to the boy of the other temple,” great temptation arose in him. That’s how temptation arises.

That day he could not avoid talking to the other boy. When he saw him on the road he asked him, “Where are you going?”

The other boy was a little philosophical; listening to great philosophy he had become philosophical. He said, “Going? There is nobody who comes and goes! It is happening — wherever the wind takes me….” He had heard the master say many times that that’s how a buddha lives, like a dead leaf: wherever the wind takes it, it goes. So the boy said, “I am not! There is no doer. So how can I go? What nonsense are you talking? I am a dead leaf. Wherever the wind takes me….”

The other boy was struck dumb. He could not even answer. He could not find anything to say. He was really embarrassed, ashamed, and felt also, “My master was right not to talk with these people — these are dangerous people! What kind of talk is this? I had asked a simple question: ‘Where are you going?’ In fact I already knew where he was going, because we were both going to purchase vegetables in the market. A simple answer would have done.”

He went back, told his master, “I am sorry, excuse me. You had prohibited me, I didn’t listen to you. In fact, because of your prohibition I was tempted. This is the first time I have talked to those dangerous people. I just asked a simple question. ‘Where are you going?’ and he started saying strange things: ‘There is no going, no coming. Who comes? Who goes? I am utter emptiness,’ he was saying, ‘just a dead leaf in the wind. And wherever the wind takes me….’”

The master said, “I told you before! Now, tomorrow stand in the same place and when he comes ask him again, ‘Where are you going?’ And when he says these things, you simply say, ‘That’s true. Yes, you are a dead leaf, so am I. But when the wind is not blowing, where are you going? Then where can you go?’ Just say that, and that will embarrass him — and he has to be embarrassed, he has to be defeated. We have been constantly quarreling, and those people have not been able to defeat us in any debate. So tomorrow it has to be done!”

Early the boy got up, prepared his answer, repeated it many times before he went. Then he stood in the place where the boy used to cross the road, repeated again and again, prepared himself, and then he saw the boy coming. He said, “Okay, now!”
The boy came. He asked, “Where are you going?” And he was hoping that now the opportunity would come….

But the boy said, “Wherever the legs will take me….” No mention of wind! No talk of nothingness! No question of the non-doer! Now what to do? His whole ready-made answer looked absurd. Now to talk about the wind would be irrelevant.

Again crestfallen, now really ashamed that he was simply stupid: “And this boy certainly knows some strange things — now he says, ‘Wherever the legs take me….’”

He went back to the master. The master said, “I have told you NOT to talk with those people — they are dangerous! This is our centuries-long experience. But now something has to be done. So tomorrow you ask again, ‘Where are you going?’ and when he says, ‘Wherever my legs take me,’ tell him, ‘If you had no legs, then…?’ He has to be silenced one way or other!”

So the next day he asked again, “Where are you going?” and waited.

And the boy said, “I am going to the market to fetch vegetables.”

Man ordinarily functions out of the past, and life goes on changing. Life has no obligation to fit with your conclusions. That’s why life is very confusing — confusing to the knowledgeable person. He has all ready-made answers: The Bhagavad-Gita, the holy Koran, the Bible, the Vedas. He has everything crammed, he knows all the answers. But life never raises the same question again; hence the knowledgeable person always falls short.

Buddha certainly says: Know how to sit silently. That does not mean that he says: Go on sitting silently forever. He is not saying you have to become inactive; on the contrary, it is only out of silence that action arises. If you are not silent, if you don’t know how to sit silently, or stand silently in deep meditation, whatsoever you go on doing is reaction, not action. You react.

Somebody insults you, pushes a button, and you react. You are angry, you jump on him — and you call it action? It is not action, mind you, it is reaction. He is the manipulator and you are the manipulated. He has pushed a button and you have functioned like a machine. Just like you push a button and the light goes on, and you push the button and the light goes off — that’s what people are doing to you: they put you on, they put you off.

Somebody comes and praises you and puffs up your ego, and you feel so great; and then somebody comes and punctures you, and you are simply flat on the ground. You are not your own master: anybody can insult you and make you sad, angry, irritated, annoyed, violent, mad. And anybody can praise you and make you feel at the heights, can make you feel that you are the greatest — that Alexander the Great was nothing compared to you.

And you act according to others’ manipulations. This is not real action.

Buddha was passing through a village and the people came and they insulted him. And they used all the insulting words that they could use — all the four-letter words that they knew. Buddha stood there, listened silently, very attentively, and then said, “Thank you for coming to me, but I am in a hurry. I have to reach the next village; people will be waiting for me there. I cannot devote more time to you today, but tomorrow coming back I will have more time. You can gather again, and tomorrow if something is left which you wanted to say and have not been able to say, you can say it to me. But today, excuse me.”

Those people could not believe their ears, their eyes: this man has remained utterly unaffected, undistracted. One of them asked, “Have you not heard us? We have been abusing you like anything, and you have not even answered!”

Buddha said, “If you wanted an answer then you have come too late. You should have come ten years ago, then I would have answered you. But for these ten years I have stopped being manipulated by others. I am no longer a slave, I am my own master. I act according to myself, not according to anybody else. I act according to my inner need. You cannot force me to do anything. It’s perfectly good: you wanted to abuse me, you abused me! Feel fulfilled. You have done your work perfectly well. But as far as I am concerned, I don’t take your insults, and unless I take them, they are meaningless.”

When somebody insults you, you have to become a receiver, you have to accept what he says; only then can you react. But if you don’t accept, if you simply remain detached, if you keep the distance, if you remain cool, what can he do?

Buddha said, “Somebody can throw a burning torch into the river. It will remain alight till it reaches the river. The moment it falls into the river, all fire is gone — the river cools it. I have become a river. You throw abuses at me. They are fire when you throw them, but the moment they reach me, in my coolness, their fire is lost. They no longer hurt. You throw thorns — falling in my silence they become flowers. I act out of my own intrinsic nature.”

This is spontaneity. The man of awareness, understanding, acts. The man who is unaware, unconscious, mechanical, robot-like, reacts.

Curtis, you ask me, “The unconscious man reacts while the wise man watches.” It is not that he simply watches — watching is one aspect of his being. He does not act without watching. But don’t misunderstand the Buddha. The buddhas have always been misunderstood; you are not the first to misunderstand. This whole country has been misunderstanding the Buddha; hence the whole country has become inactive. Thinking that all the great masters say: Sit silently, the country has become lazy, lousy; the country has lost energy, vitality, life. It has become utterly dull, unintelligent, because intelligence becomes sharpened only when you act.

And when you act moment to moment out of your awareness and watchfulness, great intelligence arises. You start shining, glowing, you become luminous. But it happens through two things: watching, and action out of that watching. If watching becomes inaction, you are committing suicide. Watching should lead you into action, a new kind of action; a new quality is brought to action.

You watch, you are utterly quiet and silent. You see what the situation is, and out of that seeing you respond. The man of awareness responds, he is responsible — literally! He is responsive, he does not react. His action is born out of his awareness, not out of your manipulation; that is the difference. Hence, there is no question of there being any incompatibility between watching and spontaneity. Watching is the beginning of spontaneity; spontaneity is the fulfillment of watching.

The real man of understanding acts — acts tremendously, acts totally, but he acts in the moment, out of his consciousness. He is like a mirror. The ordinary man, the unconscious man, is not like a mirror, he is like a photo plate. What is the difference between a mirror and a photo plate? A photo plate, once exposed, becomes useless. It receives the impression, becomes impressed by it — it carries the picture. But remember, the picture is not reality — the reality goes on growing. You can go into the garden and you can take a picture of a rosebush. Tomorrow the picture will be the same, the day after tomorrow the picture will also be the same. Go again and see the rosebush: it is no longer the same. The roses have gone, or new roses have arrived. A thousand and one things have happened.

It is said that once a realist philosopher went to see the famous painter, Picasso. The philosopher believed in realism and he had come to criticize Picasso because Picasso’s paintings are abstract, they are not realistic. They don’t depict reality as it is. On the contrary, they are symbolic, have a totally different dimension — they are symbolic.

The realist said, “I don’t like your paintings. A painting should be real! If you paint my wife, then your painting should look like my wife.” And he took out a picture of his wife and said, “Look at this picture! The painting should be like this.”

Picasso looked at the picture and said, “This is your wife?”

He said, “Yes, this is my wife!”

Picasso said, “I am surprised! She is very small and flat.”

The picture cannot be the wife!

Another story is told:

A beautiful woman came to Picasso and said, “Just the other day I saw your self-portrait in a friend’s home. It was so beautiful, I was so influenced, almost hypnotized, that I hugged the picture and kissed it.”

Picasso said, “Really! And then what did the picture do to you? Did the picture kiss you back?”

The woman said, “Are you mad?! The picture did not kiss me back.”

Picasso said, “Then it was not me.”

A picture is a dead thing. The camera, the photo plate, catches only a static phenomenon. And life is never static, it goes on changing. Your mind functions like a camera, it goes on collecting pictures — it is an album. And then out of those pictures you go on reacting. Hence, you are never true to life, because whatsoever you do is wrong; whatsoever you do, I say, is wrong. It never fits.

A woman was showing the family album to her child, and they came across a picture of a beautiful man: long hair, beard, very young, very alive.

The boy asked, “Mummy, who is this man?”

And the woman said, “Can’t you recognize him? He is your daddy!”

The boy looked puzzled and said, “If he is my daddy, then who is that bald man who lives with us?”

A picture is static. It remains as it is, it never changes. The unconscious mind functions like a camera, it functions like a photo plate. The watchful mind, the meditative mind, functions like a mirror. It catches no impression; it remains utterly empty, always empty. So whatsoever comes in front of the mirror, it is reflected. If you are standing before the mirror, it reflects you. If you are gone, don’t say that the mirror betrays you. The mirror is simply a mirror. When you are gone, it no longer reflects you; it has no obligation to reflect you anymore. Now somebody else is facing it — it reflects somebody else. If nobody is there, it reflects nothing. It is always true to life.

The photo plate is never true to life. Even if your photo is taken right now, by the time the photographer has taken it out of the camera, you are no longer the same! Much water has already gone down the Ganges. You have grown, changed, you have become older. Maybe only one minute has passed, but one minute can be a great thing — you may be dead! Just one minute before you were alive; after one minute, you may be dead. The picture will never die.

But in the mirror, if you are alive, you are alive; if you are dead, you are dead.

Buddha says: Learn sitting silently — become a mirror. Silence makes a mirror out of your consciousness, and then you function moment to moment. You reflect life. You don’t carry an album within your head. Then your eyes are clear and innocent, you have clarity, you have vision, and you are never untrue to life.

This is authentic living.

-Osho

From The Dhammapada: the Way of the Buddha, Vol. 2, Chapter Ten

The Dhammapada

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

An MP3 audio file of this discourse can be downloaded from Osho.com, or you can read the entire book online at the Osho Library.

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Self-Enquiry – Ramana Maharshi

D: What is meant by saying that one should enquire into one’s true nature and understand it?

M: Experiences such as “I went; I came; I was; I did” come naturally to everyone. From these experiences, does it not appear that the consciousness “I” is the subject of those various acts?
Enquiry into the true nature of that consciousness, and remaining as oneself is the way to understand, through enquiry, one’s true nature.

D: How is one to enquire: “Who am I?”

M: Actions such as ‘going’ and ‘coming’ belong only to the body. And so, when one says “I went, I came”, it amounts to saying that the body is “I”. But, can the body be said to be the consciousness “I”, since the body was not before it was born, is made up of the five elements, is non-existent in the state of deep sleep, and becomes a corpse when dead? Can this body which is inert like a log of wood be said to shine as “I” “I”? Therefore, the “I” consciousness which at first arises in respect of the body is referred to variously as self-conceit (tarbodham), egoity (ahankara), nescience (avidya), maya, impurity (mala), and individual soul (jiva) . Can we remain without enquiring into this? Is it not for our redemption through enquiry that all the scriptures declare that the destruction of “self-conceit” is release (mukti)? Therefore, making the corpse-body remain as a corpse, and not even uttering the word “I”, one should enquire keenly thus: “Now, what is it that rises as ‘I’”. Then, there would shine in the Heart a kind of wordless illumination of the form ‘I’ ‘I’. That is, there would shine of its own accord the pure consciousness which is unlimited and one, the limited and the many thoughts having disappeared. If one remains quiescent without abandoning that (experience), the egoity, the individual sense, of the form ‘I am the body’ will be totally destroyed, and at the end the final thought, viz. the ‘I’- form also will be quenched like the fire that burns camphor.1 The great sages and scriptures declare that this alone is release.

D: When one enquires into the root of ‘self conceit’ which is of the form ‘I’, all sorts of different thoughts without number seem to rise; and not any separate ‘I’ thought.

M: Whether the nominative case, which is the first case, appears or not, the sentences in which the other cases appear have as their basis the first case; similarly, all the thoughts that appear in the heart have as their basis the egoity which is the first mental mode ‘I’, the cognition of the form ‘I am the body’; thus, it is the rise of egoity that is the cause and source of the rise of all other thoughts; therefore, if the self-conceit of the form of egoity which is the root of the illusory tree of samsara (bondage consisting of transmigration) is destroyed, all other thoughts will perish completely like an uprooted tree. Whatever thoughts arise as obstacles to one’s sadhana (spiritual discipline) – the mind should not be allowed to go in their direction, but should be made to rest in one’s self which is the Atman; one should remain as witness to whatever happens, adopting the attitude ‘Let whatever strange things happen, happen; let us see!’ This should be one’s practice. In other words, one should not identify oneself with appearances; one should never relinquish one’s self. This is the proper means for destruction of the mind (manonasa) which is of the nature of seeing the body as self, and which is the cause of all the aforesaid obstacles. This method which easily destroys egoity deserves to be called devotion (bhakti), meditation (dhyana), concentration (yoga), and knowledge (jnana). Because God remains of the nature of the Self, shining as ‘I’ in the heart, because the scriptures declare that thought itself is bondage, the best discipline is to stay quiescent without ever forgetting Him (God, the Self), after resolving in Him the mind which is of the form of the ‘I’-thought, no matter by what means. This is the conclusive teaching of the Scriptures.

1. i.e., without leaving any sediment.

-Ramana Maharshi

From Self – Enquiry (Vicharasangraham) of Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi

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Gradual or Sudden Enlightenment – Osho

Do wisdom and understanding increase gradually or do they come as explosions?

Understanding never comes, neither as a sudden phenomenon nor as a gradual one, because it is always there. You have it right now. It is not going to happen somewhere in the future. You are carrying it within you, just as a seed carries the tree, a woman carries a child. You are carrying it right now. Now it depends on you: if your intensity is total you will achieve it suddenly, if your intensity is not total you will achieve it by and by, in steps. But understanding never comes to you – you are understanding. Enlightenment is not something that happens to you – you are enlightenment.

Remember this; then it is a choice, your choice. If you desire it totally, in that fire of total desire all that covers that understanding burns; suddenly the light is there. But it is up to you. It is not part of the nature of enlightenment to happen gradually or to happen suddenly.

Don’t throw off the responsibility, that’s how people create philosophies and schools. In Japan two schools of Zen exist: one believes in sudden enlightenment, another believes in gradual enlightenment – as if these are the qualities of enlightenment, as if they belong to enlightenment. They don’t belong to enlightenment. Enlightenment is always there; it is for you to choose. If your desire is total not even a single moment is lost. But if your desire is not total it means that you yourself are not willing it to happen right now. You want to postpone it, you want it tomorrow, some other day. Then you go on playing tricks.

If you are really sincere there is no time gap, it can happen this very moment. Not even a single moment is to be lost, because it is already the case. One has just to look within. But if you don’t want it right now then you can wait for millennia.

I would like to tell you an old story. It happened in Ceylon.

There was a great Buddhist Master who taught his disciples for almost eighty years. When he was a hundred and twenty he said one day, “Now, I am going to die after seven days.” So thousands of his disciples gathered for his last darshan, to see him for the last time.

The old man, before closing his eyes and dissolving within wards, asked them, “Does somebody want to accompany me? If somebody wants nirvana, enlightenment, right now, then he should simply raise his hand and that will do.”

People knew that he was a man of his word, and he was not joking. He had never joked in his whole life, he was a serious man. He meant what he said. They started looking at each other – thousands of people and not a single hand was raised.

One man stood up and he said, “Please don’t misunderstand me. I don’t want to accompany you right now because there are many things to be done. I have many things to fulfill, many things to pass through, many karmas to be accounted for. As yet I am not ready for it, but someday I would like to be enlightened. Can you give some key hints? – because you will be no longer here.”

And the Master had been giving key hints his whole life, for eighty years. Still they wanted something to be said about it so that they could postpone and plan and think about the future. And the old Master was ready. If somebody had been ready he was ready to take him with himself. But nobody was ready.

People are cunning, because the mind is cunning. And the greatest cunningness of the mind is that it always throws responsibility onto something else. If enlightenment is gradual then what can you do? Nothing can be done; it is gradual, it will take a long time. If enlightenment is sudden then why has it not happened to you? You will ask, “Then why has it not happened to me if it is sudden? No, it cannot be sudden. But if it is sudden and there is no need to do something for it to happen, then what can be done? I will wait – whenever it happens it happens.”

You simply want to escape from the responsibility of your own choice. Sartre has said one thing that is really beautiful. He said, “Man is free to choose but man is not free not to choose.” You can choose either way but don’t be befooled – you have no freedom not to choose, because even when you think you are not choosing you are choosing the opposite.

A man came to me and he said, “I am not yet ready for sannyas. I am ready seventy per cent, eighty per cent, but twenty per cent I am not ready, so how can I take sannyas? I’m not total.”

So I said, “Okay. But still you are choosing, and now you are choosing a minor part of your mind – the twenty per cent which says, ‘Don’t take.’ Now you are choosing the twenty per cent against the eighty per cent.”

So don’t think that you are not choosing. That’s not possible. You have to choose whatsoever you do; even if you don’t choose you will be choosing. Choice is there. One is free to choose but one is not free not to choose. If the mind says it is gradual, it is a choice; if the mind says it is sudden, that too is a choice. When you say it is sudden it means that you would like to drop every effort, so you choose sudden enlightenment. Then there is no need to do anything – when it happens it happens, nothing can be done because it is a sudden thing. Just like lightning in the sky, whenever it happens it happens – you cannot make preparations for it. It is not like electricity in the house that you put on and off, it does not depend on you. It is a sudden phenomenon, when it happens it happens. You have to wait for it. If you are thinking about reading a telegram when the electricity happens in the sky, then you have to wait. When it happens you can read it. What can you do?

People who want to escape from effort will choose sudden enlightenment. People who want to escape from the great, total responsibility of it, that it can happen right now, will choose the philosophy of gradualness.

I don’t say anything about enlightenment – I’m saying something about you. It is for you to feel your desire: total desire – enlightenment is sudden, partial desire – enlightenment is gradual. It has nothing to do with the nature of enlightenment.

Remember this.

-Osho

From Tao: The Three Treasures, V.1, Chapter 10

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

An MP3 audio file of this discourse can be downloaded from Osho.com, or you can read the entire book online at the Osho Library.

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The Metaphor of the Third Eye – Osho

The other day, you talked about the third eye as a door for connecting with you and existence. Whenever I feel open, flowing, connecting with you, other people, nature or myself, I mostly feel it in my heart as silence and expanding spaciousness, and sometimes as radiating light. Beloved Osho, is this the same kind of experience you were talking about, or is there a difference between connecting through the third eye or the heart; or are there different stages?

What you are experiencing is in itself valuable, but it is not the experience of the third eye. The third eye is a little higher than your experience. The way the mystics in the East have categorized the evolution of consciousness is in seven centers. Your experiences belong to the fourth center, the heart. It is one of the most important centers, because it is exactly in the middle. Three centers are below it and three centers are above it. That’s why love is such a balancing experience.

Your description is, “Whenever I feel open, flowing, connecting with you, other people, nature or myself, I mostly feel it in my heart as silence and expanding spaciousness, and sometimes as radiating light. Is this the same kind of experience you were talking about?” I was talking about the third eye, which is above the heart. There are three centers above the heart. One is in your throat, which is the center of creativity; one is between your two eyebrows, exactly in the middle, which is called the third eye. Just as you have two eyes to know the outside world… the third eye is only a metaphor, but the experience is knowing oneself, seeing oneself.

The last center is sahastrara, the seventh; that is at the top of your head. As consciousness goes on moving upwards, first you know yourself, and in the second step you know the whole universe; you know the whole and yourself as part of it.

In the old language, the seventh is “knowing God,” the sixth is “knowing yourself,” the fifth is “being creative,” and the fourth is “being loving, sharing and knowing others.” With the fourth, your journey becomes certain; it can be guaranteed that you will reach the seventh. Before the fourth, there is a possibility you may go astray.

The first center is the sex center, which is for reproduction—so that life continues. Just above it… the sex energy can be moved upwards, and it is a great experience; for the first time you find yourself self-sufficient.

Sex always needs the other. The second center is the center of contentment, self-sufficiency: you are enough unto yourself. At the third center you start exploring—who are you? Who is this self-sufficient being? These centers are all significant…. The moment you find who you are, the fourth center opens and you find you are love.

Before the fourth the journey has started, but there is a possibility you may not be able to complete it. You can go astray. For example, finding yourself self-sufficient, contented, you can remain there; there is no need to do anything anymore. You may not even ask the question, “Who am I?” The sufficiency is so much that all questions disappear.

A master is needed in these moments, so that you don’t settle somewhere in the middle without reaching the goal. And there are beautiful spots to settle… feeling contented, what is the need to go on? But the master goes on nagging you and wants you to know who you are; you may be contented, but at least know who you are. The moment you know who you are, a new door opens, because you become aware of life, of love, of joy. You can stay there; it is so much, there is no need to move any more. But the master goads you on, “Move to the fourth! Unless you find the purest energy of love, you will not know the splendor of existence.”

After the fourth, you cannot go astray. Once you have known the splendor of existence, creativity arises on its own. You have known beauty; you would like to create it also. You want to be a creator. A tremendous longing for creativity arises. Whenever you feel love, you always feel creativity just as a shadow coming with it. The man of creativity cannot simply go on looking outside. There is much beauty outside… but he becomes aware that just as there is an infinite sky outside, to balance it there must be the same infinity inside.

If a master is available, it is good; if he is not available, these experiences will lead you onwards.

Once your third eye is opened, and you see yourself, the whole expanse of your consciousness, you have come very close to the temple of God; you are just standing on the steps. You can see the door and you cannot resist the temptation to go inside the temple and see what is there. There you find universal consciousness, there you find enlightenment, there you find ultimate liberation. There you find your eternity.

So these are the seven centers — just arbitrarily created divisions, so the seeker can move from one to another in a systematic way; otherwise, there is every possibility, if you are working by yourself, to get muddled. Particularly before the fourth center there are dangers, and even after the fourth center….

There have been many poets who have lived at the fifth center of creativity and never gone ahead—many painters, many dancers, many singers who created great art, but never moved to the third eye. And there have been mystics who have remained with the third eye, knowing their own inner beauty; it is so fulfilling that they thought they had arrived. Somebody is needed to tell you that there is still something more ahead; otherwise, in your ignorance, what you will do is almost unpredictable.

Mike had decided to join the police force and went along for the entrance examination.

The examining sergeant, realizing that the prospective recruit was an Irishman, decided to ask him a simple question. “Who killed Jesus Christ?” he asked.

Mike looked worried and said nothing, so the sergeant told him not to worry and that he could have some time to think about it. Mike was on his way home when he met Paddy.

“Well,” said Paddy, “are you a policeman yet?”

“Not only that,” says Mike, “but I am on my first case.”

Man is such that he needs someone who has known the path and knows the pitfalls, knows the beautiful spots where one can remain stuck, and has compassion enough to go on pushing you—even against you—until you have reached to the final stage of your potentiality.

-Osho

From The Golden Future, Chapter Six

Golden Future

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

An MP3 audio file of this discourse can be downloaded from Osho.com, or you can read the entire book online at the Osho Library.

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The Third Eye and “Who am I” – Osho

The other night, following the energy between by eyes, I went into myself, looking for “Who am I?” At a certain point I found myself immersed in great nothingness. The sensation was very strong. I couldn’t go on; I felt so afraid of this emptiness that I stopped. Osho, what is this energy that is felt between the eyes? Is it the so-called “third-eye”? If this was the right way, why was I so afraid and trembling?

Ramaprem, this is the right way. That’s why you became so afraid, because the right way means a certain death, the death of your ego, the death of your personality as you have known it, and the beginning and the birth of your essential self. But the death comes first, hence the fear and trembling. The resurrection comes later.

You have been in a very beautiful space. This is the third eye that in the East has been talked about for at least ten thousand years. It is only symbolic. You have two eyes to see the world of duality – the day and night, the beautiful and the ugly, the true and the false. The whole world consists of dualities. The third eye is a poetic and symbolic expression that your two eyes have become one, that all duality has disappeared.

For the outside world two eyes are needed, for the inside world only a single clear vision – because inside there is no duality, there is only oneness.

Your question is, “The other night, following the energy between my eyes, I went into myself looking for ‘Who am I?’ At a certain point I found myself immersed in great nothingness.” These are the spaces if you go inside. But this nothingness is not negative; just a little more acquaintance with it and you will be surprised: it appeared as nothingness because there was nothing that you have ever known before or even dreamt before. But once you become acquainted with the nothingness you start feeling an immense fulfillment, an overflowing energy. This nothingness is the beginning of fullness and wholeness.

“The sensation,” you say, “was very strong. I couldn’t go on; I felt so afraid of this emptiness that I stopped.” Just be a little more intelligent.

The nothingness was surrounding you, but you were not nothing. You were witnessing it; you were separate from it. The emptiness may be surrounding you; it may be vast and may create trembling in you, but you are not it; otherwise who will become afraid and who will stop going forward? Who will turn back?

Your being is totally separate from the nothingness and emptiness that you have felt. If you had remembered only this much, “I am not it,” the fear would have disappeared. Perhaps next time, remember that you cannot be anything that you come across. You cannot come across yourself; you cannot meet yourself. So whatever you come across is separate from you. There is no need to be afraid.

But Ramaprem, it happens to almost everybody. You are alone, surrounded by nothingness, emptiness, and a deep fear arises that perhaps you are coming close to death, because in our minds the association with nothingness and emptiness is with death. But even death is not you. You pass through it; it is a passage. And if you are alert, you can pass through without any fear. On the contrary, you can enjoy the silence, the peace, the immensity, the infinity that is surrounding you. You are almost in an oceanic state of consciousness.

But now you know the door, the third eye. Travel more into it so that you become more and more acquainted, and nothingness, rather than making you afraid, will make you dance, because it is not destructive. It will give you individuality, it will give you freedom, and if you go on and on you will reach to your innermost center, which is life.

Death always happens to the body, but never to you.

And if you have found the deathless in you, all your fears, forever will disappear – and a man without fear is truly and authentically dignified. You will be proud that you have found the right path.

Very few people have traveled inwards because of this fear. As they move in, the fear stops them and they turn back into the mundane world where everything is ephemeral, where everything is going to die, where all that you possess is going to be taken away by death.

Death is impotent only against a person who knows himself. But before you can know yourself, you will have to pass through this beautiful space of nothingness, emptiness, aloneness. So rejoice and be grateful that a great experience has happened to you.

A Catholic priest visited a Catholic family. There was a little boy sitting very happily beside his cat, which had just given birth to six kittens.

The priest asked, “Why are you so happy?”

The boy said, “Because all the kittens happen to be good Catholics.” Very satisfied, the priest went home.

Two weeks later he visited the family again. As soon as the little boy saw him, he began crying desperately. “What’s the matter?” asked the priest. “Why are you so sad?”

The boy replied, sobbing, “The kittens are no longer Catholic.”

“How can you say that?” asked the priest.

The little boy replied, “They have all opened their eyes.”

The moment your inner eye starts opening, you will not be a Catholic, you will not be a Protestant, you will not be a Hindu, you will not be a Mohammedan, you will not be a Jew – you will be simply yourself; hence, all the organized religions have been avoiding the very subject.

The science of how to enter into yourself has been known for thousands of years, but no religion wants you to enter into yourself. They want you to look upwards at the sky for a fictitious God. If your inner eye remains closed, you are going to remain a Catholic, a Hindu, a Mohammedan, a communist, but once the inner eye opens, you start becoming free of all these fetters and all these imprisonments.

Every person has the potential, but you have been diverted into looking for God outside yourself – and He is sitting inside you. All the priests of the world are against God, because once you know that God is within you, the whole profession of the priesthood is finished. Churches will be empty, mosques will be empty, temples and synagogues will be empty, and the whole politics of numbers and the power that it brings to the priests will be gone.

You are only an individual without any adjective.

The world will be immensely beautiful if there are only individuals, not belonging to any religion or any political ideology, but belonging to their own inner self. That’s enough, more than enough. Belonging to life itself is the only true religion, the only truth that has to be discovered. And it is not far away, just a little fear has to be dropped.

And if you go on trying, as you will become acquainted with the beauties of nothingness, the fear is going to disappear automatically. You have accidentally found the right path – now don’t lose it.

Don’t become again a Catholic. Keep the eye open.

-Osho

From The Razor’s Edge, Chapter Thirty

The Razor's Edge

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

An MP3 audio file of this discourse can be downloaded from Osho.com, or you can read the entire book online at the Osho Library.

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