On Hearing This, Kyozan was Enlightened – Osho

Once when he was still with his Master, Kyozan said to Isan, “Where does the real  Buddha dwell?”

Isan replied, “By means of the subtlety of thoughtless thought, contemplate the boundless spiritual brightness. Contemplate it until returning to the ground of being, the always abiding nature, and its form of the undichotomous principle. This is the real Buddha.”

On hearing this, Kyozan was enlightened.

It is a very strange incident.

Western education everywhere has made us very limited and one-dimensional. So if you read this you will simply laugh. You can understand each word and its implications, but that is not the real thing that is happening between Isan and Kyozan.

Once when he was still with his Master, Kyozan said to Isan, “Where does the real  Buddha dwell?”

Isan replied, “By means of the subtlety of thoughtless thought, – when the mind is thoughtless and just empty, that is the temple of the buddha – contemplate the boundless spiritual brightness. Contemplate it until returning to the ground of being, the always abiding nature, and its form of the undichotomous principle. This is the real Buddha.”

Always move into unity with the cosmos. Dichotomy is division; undichotomy is no division, no division of any kind. Contemplate it, and this very contemplation . . . you will not find the buddha; you will find you are the buddha. There will not be two, because that will create dichotomy. There will not be you standing looking at buddha. You will merge in silence, disappear in the oceanic experience of consciousness, the eternal serenity of existence. There is no knower and nothing is known, but everything is. This ‘isness’ is buddha.

On hearing this, Kyozan was enlightened.

This makes difficulty for the modern mind. How can one become enlightened just by listening to a few lines? You can go on reading these lines again and again, you will not become enlightened; you will simply become crazy.

Underneath, something else is happening. While the master is speaking, the disciple is not only listening because he has ears. The disciple is listening with his total being, every fiber of his being; not only with ears, he is also listening with his eyes, looking at the master; he is also feeling the master, his vibe. It is a total phenomenon. He has forgotten himself and disappeared in the tremendous statement.

The moment you forget yourself and only a silent consciousness remains, you have come home. Enlightenment is not something special; it is hidden in you, your hidden splendor. It is just that you are so much occupied with the outside world that you can forget anything, particularly those things which are very obvious.

In the first world war rationing was introduced and everybody had to appear before the rationing officer to get a ration card. Thomas Alva Edison, a world-famous figure – all your facilities and comforts, most of them are because of Edison; he discovered one thousand things – he was also standing in the queue. And as he was coming closer to the top of the queue, people were leaving, taking their cards, and finally the clerk shouted, “Now it is time for Thomas Alva Edison.”

Edison looked here and there; he could not see anybody. A long queue was behind him. Somebody from the back said, “As far as I know, the man who is standing in front of you is Thomas Alva Edison.”

Edison said, “Perhaps I may be, but for fifty years nobody has used my name in front of me.” He was so famous; in the university he was called ‘the professor’, nobody used his name. And he was so engrossed and engaged in his experiments, he had no time to meet people, to talk to people. He was a man who was absolutely alone in the crowd. He had forgotten his own name – fifty years is a long time.

If nobody uses your name, you will also forget, or you may think, “Perhaps I have heard this name somewhere far away, far back, as an echo, but I cannot guarantee it. I have to find witnesses.”

Now, if your name is not used by others out of respect and love, you are not going to use it yourself. Naturally, not being used for fifty years – and a name is an arbitrary device – Edison forgot his.

But you have forgotten your innermost being. His loss was not much of a loss, just a label. Your loss is far deeper and greater. For centuries you have lived, but you don’t know who you are.

The explosion of enlightenment is: Suddenly you become aware of your eternal being.

-Osho

From Kyozan, A True Man of Zen, Discourse #1

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.

Many of Osho’s books are available in the U.S. online from Amazon.com and Viha Osho Book Distributors. In India they are available from Amazon.in and Oshoworld.com.

Be a Rare Person – Osho

Daio wrote:

The sphere of perfect communion
Is clear everywhere.
The water is alive,
The willow eyes are green.
Why are people these days
In such a great hurry?
In each land,
The sphere of perfect communion.
Those who go right in
Are rare.

Daio is saying: everything is so beautiful, the stars and the trees and the birds, why can’t you simply sing and dance and join into the cosmos? Where are you hurrying to? Wherever you go you will be frustrated, because the thing that you are trying to find is hidden within you.

This very moment can become your illumination. Not a single step has to be taken.

In each land,
The sphere of perfect communion.
Those who go right in
Are rare.

Just go right in, be a rare person! Don’t search it outside. This is the whole teaching of all the buddhas.

Maneesha has asked one question:

Our Beloved Master,

I have met someone with enlightened eyes who does not just bring us water to drink, but showers us with it. And yet, and yet . . . are we so neurotic, so complex, so far removed from innocence, that we can only receive that for which we have suffered?

It is the whole wrong training of the religions, of the societies, of the cultures, which says that unless you deserve a thing, unless you are worthy of it, you cannot get it. That is the reason, Maneesha, that if I tell you that you are enlightened, you look here and there. You cannot trust — “My god, I am enlightened! And I have not done anything. I have not tortured myself; I have not prayed. I have not fasted; I don’t know the scriptures.”

But I say to you that for everything except enlightenment you will have to work. If you want money, you cannot sit with closed eyes. If you sit with closed eyes, you may even lose money — somebody may cut your pocket. For money you have to work hard. If you want political power, you have to work hard. You have to be cunning; you have to be dishonest; you have to be a hypocrite. You have to use all kinds of right or wrong means to achieve the end. Only enlightenment, in the whole phenomenon of existence, is without any need to deserve it.

It is already there. You can deny it as long as you want, you can find excuses as long as you want, but finally you will be tired of excuses and you will have to accept it — “Yes, I am enlightened.”

It is just a totally different phenomenon. It is neither money, nor power, nor prestige, nor reputation. You don’t have to learn it; you don’t have to earn it. It is in your very heart; it is your heartbeat. You have just to look into your own being.

-Osho

From The Language of Existence, Discourse #6

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.

Many of Osho’s books are available in the U.S. online from Amazon.com and Viha Osho Book Distributors. In India they are available from Amazon.in and Oshoworld.com.

Zen is a Brave Step – Osho

The first question:

From what I heard you say last night about reincarnation, I understand that even individuality is superficial.

Reincarnation was a consolation for me, that “my essence” or “soul” would continue. But now I understand that nothing of me will continue.

In witnessing, do we all “plug in” to the same witnessing energy? Don’t I even have my own witness?

The ultimate truth hurts very much.

Finally, everything is gone, including me and you. What remains is a pure consciousness.

It is not that you are plugged into it, you are no more.

The dispersion is so intimate and so ultimate that first your personality has to disappear, then your individuality has to disappear, then what remains is pure existence. It makes one feel a little worried and concerned, because you don’t know the experience of not being.

Just think for a moment . . . Before this life you were not. Was there any trouble? Any anxiety?

After this life you will not be again. What is the fear? There will be silence and peace, in the same space where anxiety, tensions and anguishes flourished. They all will have melted just the way a dewdrop disappears into the ocean.

Hence, Zen does not teach you self-realization. Self-realization is a much lower goal. Zen teaches you the ultimate: no-self realization, or realizing that disappearing into the whole is the final peace.

Your very being is an anxiety. At whatever level you are, some anxiety will remain. You are anxiety, and if you want anxiety to disappear, you have to be ready to disappear yourself.

The second question:

In my witnessing I have experience nothing – by that, I mean that there was nothing discernable other than the simple state of conscious waiting. I have witnessed events of the mind, body and emotions, and I have observed out-of-body experiences, but I don’t have the clarity to understand the nature of these things.

What is the nature of no-mind apart from mind? Is it a receptive, passive mind as opposed to an active mind? Or is it truly non-mind? And how does consciousness receive and recognize information if it has no mind-brain to perceive it?

You have asked too many questions in one question.

The first thing to remember is that when I say witness, in the beginning you witness things of the body, of the mind, of the heart, emotions, thoughts . . . layer upon layer you go on witnessing. And finally, you find just a pure mirror, the witness itself. I call it a pure mirror because it is witnessing nothing. This nothingness is your very nature.

Out of this nothingness arises everything, and into this nothingness dissolves everything. And if you are ready to be nothing – even while you are alive – your life will have a flavor of peace, silence, and grace.

All your educational systems and all your cultural beliefs, force you to be ambitious, to be somebody. But to be somebody means creating anxieties in a silent pool, ripples and waves. The greater the ambition, the more tidal is the wave of anxiety. You can become almost insane desiring. Trying to be somebody, you are trying the impossible, because basically you are nobody.

Zen has an absolutely unique perception into the nothingness of everyone. It does not teach you any ambition, it does not teach you to be someone else. It simply wants you to know that in the deepest part of your being you are still nothing, you are still carrying the original purity which is not even contaminated by an idea of “I.”

So while you are witnessing, you say, “I have experienced nothing.” If you have experienced nothing, you should not be there. Experiencing nothing means you are not, nothing is – simply waves in the water, coming and going.

It is not that you witness nothing. You are creating another small “I,” but it contains the whole world of ambitions. Experiencing nothing simply means you are not. And there comes a tremendous joy, because the whole energy that was involved in anxieties and desires and tensions, is released in a dance, in a blissfulness, in a silence, in a tremendous insight, but it does not belong to any “I” – a  pure white cloud without any roots, floating in freedom, without any reason and without any direction. The whole existence has become its home. It no longer separates itself. This inseparation is the ultimate blossoming of buddhahood. To know that you are not is the greatest knowing.

You ask in your question if there is no one who perceives all this. That no one is not yet no one if it perceives anything. When there is nothing left, there is no perceiver, everything is dissolved into existence.

Zen is the only existential religion in the world. Every religion thrives on your desire to be separate, to be individual, to be special, to be self-realized, to be a saint. Those are all cowardly desires.

Zen is a brave step.

It cannot be transcended by anything more courageous.

A quantum leap into nothing and silence . . .

If you start asking who is silent, you are not silent. If you start asking who is perceiving all this, who is witnessing, you have not yet come to the nothingness I am indicating to you.

And it is such a small thing to understand what you have gained by being – troubles. Zen shows you the way of non-being, the way out of all troubles, the way of silence.

Meditation comes to its flowering when there is nobody. This flower of nobodiness, of nothingness, is the ultimate expression of existential heights. Otherwise, you remain a small someone, somebody, confined. Why not be the whole? When it is possible to drop into the ocean, why remain a dewdrop and be afraid of many kinds of death, of the sun which will evaporate you . . . ?

Why not take a small jump into the ocean and disappear? Why not be the ocean itself? It is another way of saying it. When I say, “Be nothing,” I am simply saying, “Why not be everything?”

Disappear into the existence. You will blossom into flowers, you will fly with the birds; you will become clouds, you will be oceans, you will be rivers, but you will not be somebody special with an “I.” The “I” is the trouble, the only trouble, and then it creates many troubles around it.

The whole experience of Zen is the experience of getting into a state of no-I, no-self, and then there is no question – nobody is to ask, and nobody is to answer.

The third question:

It has been said that duality is the nature of mind. But by saying “mind” does that mean only the analytical processes which occur mainly in the left brain? Does that mean that activity such as music, beauty, wholeness and synthesis also arise from an inevitable intrinsic dualism of the mind itself?

Everything that arises out of the mind is bound to be dual. It may be arising from the right side of the mind or the left side of the mind, it does not matter.

There is a music which does not rise from the mind. That music is absolutely soundless, and is heard only by those who have come to be nothing. There is a beauty known, there is a dance experienced only by those who have gone beyond the duality of the mind. Meditation can be defined as going beyond the duality of the mind.

Whatever comes out of the mind is going to be ordinary; it may be music, it may be mathematics. One arises from the right side; one arises from the left side – that does not matter. Your music and your mathematics, your philosophy and your poetry, all are very superficial.

But there is something in you which is never heard, never can be said, never can be conveyed, but can only be lived. This nothingness I am talking about is a living experience of being no one. Out of that nothingness, a life arises full of music, but the music is soundless; full of beauty, but the beauty is formless; full of joy, but the joy is indefinable; full of dance, but there is no movement.

A meditator knows something that mind is not capable of knowing about. The mind only knows the superficial, and the superficial is always dual; it is divided for and against.

Nothingness is non-dual, it is not divided. It is just pure silence, but a very alive silence. And if out of that silence anything happens, that has a beauty and a truth which anything created by the mind cannot be compared with.

A man of silence – he may not even do anything, but just his silence is a blessing to the whole existence. His silence is a music only heard by those who have gone deeper and beyond the mind.

The sutra:

Beloved Osho,

Sekishitsu was a disciple of Choshi. On a visit to Sekito, the monk Sekishitsu, became enlightened. After his enlightenment, Sekishitsu went back to his master, Choshi. Chosi had also been a disciple of Sekito.

Choshi said, “Did you reach Sekito?”

Sekishitsu replied, “Yes, I did, but was not introduced.”

Choshi said, “Who did you receive precepts from?”

Sekishitsu replied, “Not from him.”

Do you see the mysterious way Sekishitsu is replying? When asked, “Did you reach Sekito?” he said, “Yes, I did, but was not introduced, because neither has he a form nor have I a form. Neither has he a name nor have I a name. There is no possibility of introduction.”

Choshi said, “Who did you receive precepts from?” – then from whom have you received the teachings?

Sekishitsu replied, “Not from him – I have received, but I have received from a nothingness. To me, my master was not a man of words. We met beyond the words. We looked into each other’s eyes and something transpired. But he has not said a single word; that is why I cannot say that I have received any teachings from him. Of course, being with him I have become enlightened.”

Sekishitsu became enlightened just by seeing Sekito. Nothing was verbally said to him; neither did he become a disciple, nor did he become initiated. Just watching Sekito… just seeing that pillar of silence, that nothingness – and he simply disappeared as a being, himself; he became a nothing. And without saying a word, he left Sekito and went back to his master, Choshi.

Choshi became enlightened also in the company of Sekito. That is why he is interested in asking what has happened: “Did you reach Sekito? – because you look as if you have not only reached him, but you have found him. You have penetrated his being; you are carrying his fragrance. What is the matter? Did you reach Sekito?”

Sekishitsu replied, “Yes, I did, but was not introduced. Nothing was said by him, and nothing was said by me.”

Choshi said, “Then from whom did you receive the precepts? You seem to have realized the purity of consciousness. You cannot deceive me; I can see you are no more. How did it happen? Who told you the precepts – the techniques, the methods, the disciplines?”

Sekishitsu replied, again in a roundabout way, “Not from him.”

Choshi then said, “If you were like that there, what will you be here? If you have not received the teachings, the disciplines, the precepts from a great master, Sekito, what kind of person are you going to be here? If you were like that there, what will you be here?”

Sekishitsu said, “Not much difference. I will be the same. Neither time makes any difference, nor space makes any difference. I was no one there, I will be no one here.”

Sekishitsu said, “Not much difference.”

Choshi could not understand this roundabout way of talking; he was a simple man of Zen. He said, “That is too much if you are going to be the same here too. Here you have to follow the precepts; here you have to meditate. Here you have to enter into the world of Zen.”

But Choshi was not a great master of Zen, he was a man of Zen. He has understood nothingness, but he was not capable of conveying it. He said, “That is too much if you are not going to be any different here.”

Sekishitsu said, “My tongue has no color yet.” He is saying, “Don’t be worried. I am as pure as a child. I have not been programmed by anyone. I am a tabula rasa, a clean slate. My tongue has no color yet.”

Choshi replied, “You noisy novice” – because according to Choshi, this young man was just a novice. He could not penetrate and see in this novice the transformation that had happened in the companionship of Sekito.

He was an ordinary man of Zen who had followed precepts, principles, step by step. He could not understand this quantum leap – a pure jump. That was too much. He thought, “This man is too noisy. I am asking simple questions; he goes on in a roundabout way. Go away!” And Sekishitsu immediately went away.

This anecdote is very strange. Its strangeness is that it is not necessary that a man of Zen will be able to understand another man of Zen. Of course, a master will be able to understand all kinds of Zen people, but a master is multidimensional, and a man of Zen is only one-dimensional. He has followed a certain path, and he thinks only by following that path does one reach to the nothingness he has reached.

If one has to reach nothingness, any path will do. There are as many paths as there are people to travel. But to understand that, a great master is needed.

There have been enlightened people, but still they could not understand other enlightened people for the simple reason that they have followed a certain path and the other fellow has not followed that particular path. They have become too conditioned by the path. They cannot see that when you are going into nothingness, every path is the right path.

When you are going somewhere, every path is not the right path, but when you are going nowhere, every path is the right path. But to understand that every path finally leads into nothingness, needs a multidimensional consciousness.

There are masters, and there are mystics, and this is the difference: the mystic can understand only one-dimensionally; the master has a wider view, a bird’s-eye view. He can look from above and see that all paths are leading to nowhere.

Choshi could not understand Sekishitsu. Sekishitsu left him immediately; this was not the right place for him. He had already gone beyond the paths and the precepts and the scriptures.

Kyorai wrote:

Immobile haze.
Moon, Spring, sleep.

He is saying this is what life is: “Immobile haze. Moon, spring, sleep” – simple, no complication.

A sannyasin lives a life of such simplicity: the moon, the spring, the sleep – and he is fulfilled. A little immobile haze, and then arises the moon, then comes the spring – there are flowers – and then the sleep.

If you can conceive life in such simple terms – a little dance, a little love, a little playfulness, a little laughter, a little music, and then comes the eternal sleep, life becomes just a small drama. Soon the drama will be over. The acceptance that the drama will be over, that we are just players in a game which is not going to last forever – we will have to vacate the place for other players – then life becomes very simple, without any complexity and without any competition. One lives silently, peacefully, and prepares himself for the eternal peace, the eternal silence, the eternal sleep.

Maneesha’s question:

Beloved Osho,

Fritjof Capra contends that, “Modern physics goes far beyond technology. The way – or Tao – of physics can be a path with a heart, a way to spiritual realization.”

Do you agree?

Maneesha, the question is not of agreeing or not agreeing, because all agreements and disagreements are of the mind. I know that Capra is simply guessing. He is a man who knows modern physics and a little bit of the philosophy of Tao. And it is a very small thing to create a physics of Tao, or a Tao of physics, because the word tao simply means the way, and modern physics certainly has gone beyond technology. It has moved beyond the boundaries of mind, and is in a tremendous chaos. As far as mind was concerned, things were clear. But now, modern physics has come to a point where mind cannot make any sense. Capra himself, being a physicist, started learning about Tao in the effort to understand the chaos that modern physics has entered into, and that perhaps Tao may help.

But he is not a man of Tao, he is still an intellectual trying to make some definitions, trying to make something out of the chaos. He is still thinking of spiritual realization, and there is no spiritual realization because there is no spirit as such.

There is a dispersion into nothingness. You cannot call it realization. It can be called derealization, but it cannot be called realization. Nothing is realized. Even that which was there is no more – only silence prevails.

I know the chaos of existence is ultimate. Every effort to bring it into a system is bound to fail. Philosophies have failed, science has failed. More efforts will be made, but I can predict with absolute authority that no system is going to explain this vast existence. It is bound to remain a mystery.

Religions have tried in their own way, but failed. Philosophies have failed. Science came with great systematic logic, and in the beginning of this century science was absolutely certain that it was going to succeed and explain away the whole mystery of existence, bring it down to rationalization. But on the contrary, the opposite has happened.

As science has approached deeper into reality, all its old concepts have become invalid. Now Aristotelian logic is no longer logic, and Euclidean geometry is no longer geometry. Now, science is at a point where everything again has become mysterious – no explanation, and no reason. But the effort continues.

My approach is totally different. I want you to know that chaos is the very nature of existence, you cannot make it a cosmos. You cannot make it a system, either by Tao or by Zen. You cannot make it an explained system where everything is knowable.

I have always divided existence into three segments: the known, the unknown, and the unknowable.

That which is unknown will become known tomorrow.

That which is known today was unknown yesterday. But the known and the unknown are a very superficial part. Beyond both is the unknowable. That unknowable is a chaos; it is irrational, illogical. There is no way to bring it into explanations, no way to make a science of it, or a philosophy of it. This chaos I have called nothingness. You can enter into it, you can be one with it, you can rejoice in it, but don’t try to conceptualize it.

So it is not a question, Maneesha, of my agreement or disagreement with Fritjof Capra. I know existence is a chaos, and will remain always a chaos. All efforts of man are bound to fail in systematizing it. It is not a system; it is not mechanics. Hence, I always have loved Gautam Buddha’s statement. Asked, “What is truth?” he replied in a very strange way. He said, “Whatever works.” He did not define truth, he simply said, “Whatever works is true.”

And more than that, even today we don’t know. We don’t know what electricity is, we only know how it works; we don’t know what it is. There is no way to know it, and there is no need.

Let existence function.

Use it, love it, rejoice in it. There is no need to systematize it; all systems are bound to fail. Zen is not a system; it is a path towards the chaos.

Go dancingly in without bothering and worrying what it is.

Rejoice in it!

What is the point in thinking what is music?

Love it, listen to it, create it.

What is the point of finding the definition of dance?

Dance!

But still very few people are of the age, mature enough to recognize this immense chaos without fear, and to use it as much as you can. Love it, live it, and drop the childish idea that you have to understand it. What are you going to do by understanding it? And in the first place, understanding is not possible.

Mind is too small, and existence is too vast – without any boundaries. There is no possibility that there will ever be a system which explains everything. And that will be a very fatal day if some system explains everything – life will lose all joy.

People are trying to explain everything. Then love becomes just chemistry, biology, hormones. Do you ever think about love as hormones, as biology, as chemistry? And the moment you think about chemistry, biology, hormones, love loses all mystery. And certainly, love is more than chemistry, biology, or hormones can explain. They may explain sex, but they cannot explain love.

Love need not be sexual. In fact, at the highest point even sexuality transforms into love . . . love unexplained, irrational, a chaos. You can experience it, but you cannot explain it.

-Osho

From The Zen Manifesto: Freedom from Oneself, Discourse #6

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.

Many of Osho’s books are available in the U.S. online from Amazon.com and Viha Osho Book Distributors. In India they are available from Amazon.in and Oshoworld.com.

Ripe Plum – Osho

Maneesha, one of the most important things to be remembered all along is that the Zen master is not a philosopher. He is not rational. Basically he is very irrational and absurd, but miraculously he manages – from his absurdity, from his contradictory statements – to make the message clear to you. Today he may say something and tomorrow something else. If you bring your logical mind into it, you will think that you are being confused. But there are different ways of saying the same thing. In fact even in contradictions the same message can be given.

This is one of the great contributions of Zen, that there are no contradictions. Everything is expressing the same truth, the same reality. The smallest piece of grass and the biggest star are not in any way giving you a different message. Nobody is lower and nobody is higher in existence. There is no hierarchy. And as far as truth is concerned, fundamentally it is inexpressible. But if you want to express the inexpressible, then you can use even contradictory terms to indicate the same thing.

Two different fingers, coming from two different angles, can point to the same moon. The mind may find it difficult. In fact the Zen master’s whole work is to make things so difficult for the mind that you become tired of the mind, tired of thinking, and you put it aside. And that moment of restfulness, when you have put the mind aside, brings you to the door of existence.

This small anecdote is very significant.

Ma Tzu stayed with his master, Nagaku, for more than ten years. On leaving him, he became abbot of the Kai Yuan Temple at Chiang-si.

In his sermons, Ma Tzu followed closely the basic insights of the Sixth Patriarch, Eno – particularly, that there is no buddha outside of one’s own mind.

This word ‘mind’ can be understood as the ordinary mind, full of thoughts, emotions, sentiments and attachments. And this same mind can also be thought of as empty. You can empty it of all thoughts, of all emotions. And the moment this mind is empty, there is no difference between mind and no-mind. So there is no need to be confused.

A few masters will use: “The present mind contains everything, even the buddha.” But the condition is that the mind should be empty. Then it, itself, is the buddha.

Buddha’s own statement is significant. He says, “This very body, the buddha; this very mind, the lotus paradise.” But continuously he is saying that you are not the body, you are not the mind. Then what does he mean with this contradiction? He is simply saying that if you are not identified with the body, this very body is as much a buddha as anything in the world. If you are not filled with thoughts, this very mind is as spacious as the whole sky. He is not contradicting himself, he is simply using contradictory ways to indicate the truth.

Eno was the man who had introduced Ma Tzu to Nangaku. Eno was getting old and Ma Tzu was very young, so he did not take the responsibility of guiding Ma Tzu into meditation. He gave the responsibility to Nangaku who was going to be his successor when he died. But the way Eno introduced Ma Tzu to Nangaku was so insightful: “Be very careful with this young man. He is going to be a buddha, and he is going to be your successor, just as you are my successor. Be very reverent, grateful, that you have got a man who is on the verge of becoming a buddha in your hands.”

Ma Tzu remained closer to Eno’s teachings although Eno was not his master, but Eno had seen his potentiality – the possibility, the invisible future. And at the same time he had seen that his death was coming closer, so taking on the responsibility of a disciple at this moment would be wrong, an particularly of a disciple who needs tremendous care because he is on the very verge of exploding. Being very old he thought it would be better that Ma Tzu should be given into the hands of his successor, Nangaku.

Nangaku was a master in his own right. His teaching was not just a following of Eno. In the world of Zen it is not necessary that a disciple should follow the master in details. All that is necessary is that the disciple should understand the master’s presence, his fundamental realization. It should not remain a belief to the disciple, it should become an actual taste. Doctrines and beliefs don’t matter at all. What matters is the master’s presence and his realization, and the splendor that the realization brings with it.

Eno never asked Nangaku to follow him – Nangaku had his own approach – but he had chosen Nangaku to be his successor. This is very strange. It does not happen in any other place in the whole world. People choose successors to follow them in detail. But Zen is unique in every way. It is not a question of following, it is that this man is also realized. His methods may be different, his devices may be different, his approaches may be different, but he is a realized man, he can be a successor.

But strangely, although Eno had given the responsibility of his initiation to Nangaku, Ma Tzu remained fundamentally close to Eno’s teaching, to Eno’s method of indicating the truth. Eno had caught a glimpse of his future. Nangaku took every care and helped him to become an enlightened master. But he was always more grateful towards Eno for this very reason: that he had refused to initiate him, because his death was very close; and he had put him in the hands of the right person, who would take care of him, because his spring was coming soon. He would be blossoming, and Eno would not be there.

Certainly, Ma Tzu and Eno, without any relationship of master and disciple, came very close in their hearts. Their hearts started beating in the same rhythm. His master’s teaching was in many ways different, particularly from Eno’s teaching that there is no buddha outside of one’s own mind.

But remember it, when Eno says ‘mind’, you can translate it as ‘no-mind’. What he means is ‘empty mind’ which is equivalent to ‘no-mind’. What is left in an empty mind? – just a pure space. It depends on you whether you prefer to call it the empty mind or no-mind. But both are equivalent, not in the dictionaries, but in the existential experience.

One day, when Ma Tzu was on his way home from Chiang-si, he stopped to visit his old master, Nangaku.

He is a master now in his own right. He had gone to Chiang-si and was returning home from there, and he stopped to visit his hold master, Nangaku. When Ma Tzu had burned incense and made bows to Nangaku, Nangaku gave him this verse . . .

This too has to be understood. Even when a disciple becomes enlightened, it does not matter, his gratefulness becomes even fuller. It is not that now there is no need of the master. It is not that “Now I am equal to the master, now I am experiencing the same buddhahood as the master.” No, it is not thought of in that way, because that is the way of the ego. The ego has been lost long ago. The way of gratitude, the way of humbleness is that “Though I may have become a buddha, my master was the indicator towards the right path, and I will remain forever and forever in deep gratitude towards him.”

Sariputta, one of Buddha’s chief disciples, became enlightened. With tears in his eyes he came to Buddha and he said, “I was avoiding enlightenment, but you went on insisting. Now I am enlightened and my eyes are full of tears because I know you will send me away from you, just to spread the fire. And I understand your compassion, that you are continuously aware of the many who can become buddhas; just a little support is needed. Those who have not gone very far away from themselves can be called back very easily.”

Buddha said, “Then why are you crying?”

He said, “I am crying because I will not be able to touch your feet every day as I have been doing for these twenty years.”

Buddha said, “Do one thing. Keep a map with you, and remember in what direction I am dwelling. Just bow down in that direction. Touch the feet symbolically, touch the earth – because after all this body is made of earth, and one day it will go back to the earth. So touching the earth is not only touching my feet, but touching the feet of all the buddhas who have ever happened. They have all dissolved their bodies in the earth. So there is no need, and it does not look right, that an enlightened person should weep and cry.”

Sariputta said, “I don’t care what people think, but the reality is that tears are coming. And according to your teachings, I should be spontaneous and authentic. Even if you say, ‘Don’t weep,’ I am not going to listen. Tears are coming, what can I do? I cannot be a hypocrite, smiling though the eyes are full of tears.”

It is said that Sariputta, wherever he was, in the morning would look at the map, to find exactly where

Buddha was, and in that direction he would bow down and touch the feet of Buddha. He came to have thousands of disciples of his own and they said, “It does not look right. You need not do such a gesture. You are a buddha yourself.”

He said, “It is true, I am a buddha myself, but I would not have been a buddha if I had not met Gautam the Buddha. It is the meeting with this man that triggered something in me, burned all that was false and brought all that was true in its pristine purity and clarity. I owe so much to this man that there is no way to pay him. All that I can do is touch his feet from miles away.”

He continued to his very last breath. Before he died – he died before Gautam Buddha – the last thing he said to his disciples was, “Forgive me because you cannot see those invisible feet. Let me touch the feet of my master for the last time.” And he bowed down, tears flowing from his eyes, and he died in that posture. He did not get up again. This is true humanity – humbleness, devotion, love, trust.

Ma Tzu, visiting his old master, burned incense in front of him as you burn incense before a buddha statue and made bows to Nangaku. Nangaku gave him this gatha, this verse:

“I advise you not to go home.
If you do, the Tao is immovable.
And an old woman next door to you
Will talk of your infant name.”

Ma Tzu respectfully accepted it and swore to himself never to go home, however often he might be reborn. Staying only in Chiang-si, he had disciples come to him from all parts of China.

Very strange but meaningful advice. Nangaku told him not to go home. It implies many things. It implies that now you are homeless. The moment you become enlightened you don’t have a home, not even your body is your home. Now the whole existence is your home, so stop this old habit of going home once in a while. There is no home for you anymore. You are a homeless cloud floating in the sky, in total freedom, unattached to anything.

If you do, the Tao is immovable.

Nangaku is saying, “If you don’t listen to my advice and still go home, remember that your Tao, your empty buddha inside, never goes anywhere. So you are just acting; just a dead body, a corpse is going. Your real being is immovable; it never goes anywhere; it is always now and here.” And he said, “and an old woman next door to you will talk of your infant name.”

Ma Tzu’s childhood name was Baso. Nangaku is making a joke about his name, that the old woman next door to his home will call him Baso. They will not recognize that he is no more Baso, that he is Ma Tzu, that he is a great master. In their eyes he will be just the same; they have seen him born, and they have seen him growing up. It is very difficult for them to recognize that he has become a buddha, and they will think it very insulting to the Buddha.

Ma Tzu respectfully accepted it and swore to himself never to go home, however often he might be reborn.

He is saying that even if he is born again – although an enlightened person is never born again – he is giving his promise that even if he is born again and again, he will never go home. He has understood his homelessness, his aloneness.

Staying only in Chiang-si, he had disciples come to him from all parts of China.

One day a monk called Ta-mei joined a training assembly of Ma Tzu. Ta-mei asked the master: “What is buddha?”

Ma-Tzu replied: “It is the present mind” – the teaching of Eno that he followed all his life.

But remember that the mind is never in the present; it is either in the past or in the future. In the present is empty mind. You can call it the present mind if you are interested in using the positive words or you can call it no-mind, if you want to use the negative. The truth can be expressed both ways, negatively or positively. The present mind in fact means no-mind. For those who understand the presentness, all mind disappears. Mind can be in the past, mind can be in the future, but never in the present. Hence being in the present simply means being out of the grip of the mind.

Ma Tzu replied: “It is the present mind.”

On hearing this, Ta-mei attained his full enlightenment. He took himself off into the mountains, and over the years hardly noticed the passing of time; he only saw the mountains around him turn green or yellow.

One day, Ma Tzu sent a monk specially to test him. The monk asked Ta-mei, “When you once saw Ma Tzu, by what word did you become enlightened?”

Ta-mei replied, “By Ma Tzu’s saying, ‘The present mind is the buddha.’”

“Now his way is another,” The monk told Ta-mei.

“What is it then?” Asked Ta-mei.

“Ma Tzu now says that this very mind which is buddha is neither mind nor buddha,” replied the monk.

This very mind is neither the buddha nor the mind. Now Ma Tzu is teaching this way.

“That old fellow!” said Ta-mei. “When will he cease to confuse the minds of men? Let him go on with his ‘neither mind nor buddha.’ I will stick to this present mind itself is buddha.’”

He has understood clearly that Ma Tzu has changed his expression from positive to the negative. He can confuse an ordinary man, but he cannot confuse an enlightened man anymore.

“That old fellow!” said Ta-mei. “When will he cease to confuse the minds of men?”

There was no need to change, the old expression was perfect.

“Let him go on with his ‘neither mind nor buddha.’ I will stick to this present mind itself is buddha.’”

You may think that he is not agreeing with his master, Ma Tzu, but then you will not have understood it. He is agreeing perfectly well. He understands that it means the same. He has just changed the expression from positive to negative. Only the expression is changed, not the expressed. So he says, “Let the old fellow do whatever he wants, but I am going to insist that this present mind itself is the buddha.”

When the messenger told Ma Tzu of this exchange, Ma Tzu commented: “The fruit of a plum has ripened.”

Ma Tzu understood perfectly well that Ta-mei had become enlightened. Any unenlightened man would have been confused because the unenlightened mind can never think that positive and negative can be of the same significance and have the same meaning. There is a place where yes and no are not contradictory.

Ma Tzu said, “The fruit of a plum has ripened.”

Ta-mei’s name, in Chinese, means ‘big plum’.

Takuan wrote:

The moon has no intent to cast
Its shadow anywhere,
Nor does the pond design to
Lodge the moon.
How serene the water of Hirosawa!

Takuan’s monastery was near the lake Hirosawa. In this small poem is contained the whole essence of Zen. The moon has no intent to cast its shadow anywhere . . .

Do you think the moon has any intention to cast its shadow and reflection into thousands of seas and lakes and ponds? It has no intent at all.

And on the other side, Nor does the pond design to lodge the moon.

Neither the pond, the lake or the ocean are desiring to lodge the moon, or are interested to reflect the moon.

How serene the water of Hirosawa!

It is not even disturbed by the reflection of the moon. It does not care. His poem is saying to you to live without intentions, without any goals, without any desire of achievement, any ambition. Just live spontaneously, moment to moment. Whatever happens, accept it joyfully, rejoicingly, without any complaint or grudge.

Even if death comes, let it be welcomed. Dance, sing a song. That has been the tradition in Zen. Each master is expected – and they all have done it – that before dying they should write a small haiku containing their whole teaching.

It shows two things: that they are perfectly aware of death, and that even in death they are not in any sadness. Their haiku says their joy, their fulfillment. Without your asking for anything, existence has given everything to you.

A man who lives with intentions is bound to feel frustration. A man who lives with expectations is bound to feel frustrated because existence has no obligation to you. But if you live without intentions, without expectations, then miraculously you find that everything that you ever dreamed of is being fulfilled. The moon is reflected in the lake – the lake never asked it, the moon never intended it. Existence goes on spontaneously. Don’t bring your desire, your ambition and your expectation; they are the disturbing points. They create a chaos in your mind. But if there is no intention for anything, How serene the water of Hirosawa!

The moon is reflected but the water is not even thrilled. Such a beautiful moon and the Hirosawa lake takes the reflection naturally, spontaneously. If it was not reflected, there would not have been any frustration. Moon or no moon, nothing matters. The lake of Hirosawa is silent. And that should be your inner consciousness – just a silent lake.

Maneesha has asked:

Our beloved master,

How amazing it would be if turned up one evening in Gautam the Buddha Auditorium, and all you could see was a vast hall of empty mirrors, or rows and rows of juicy, ripe plums.

Do you really think it’s possible? Is anything happening? Or better: is nothing happening?

Maneesha, it is happening every day. The whole hall is full of mirrors and full of big plums. Look at Avirbhava, a dancing plum.

-Osho

From Ma Tzu: The Empty Mirror, Discourse #3

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.

Many of Osho’s books are available in the U.S. online from Amazon.com and Viha Osho Book Distributors. In India they are available from Amazon.in and Oshoworld.com.

 

Centering is the Method, Not the Result – Osho

If enlightenment and samadhi mean total consciousness, cosmic consciousness, all-pervading consciousness, then it seems very strange to call this state of cosmic consciousness centering, as the word ‘centering’ implies one -pointedness. Why is cosmic consciousness, or samadhi, called centering?

Centering is the path, not the goal. Centering is the method, not the result. Samadhi is not called centering; centering is the technique to samadhi. Of course, they look contradictory because when one realizes, becomes enlightened, there is no center left.

Jacob Boehme has said that when one comes to the divine it can be described in two ways: either the center is everywhere now, or the center is nowhere; both mean the same thing. So the word ‘centering’ seems contradictory, but the path is not the goal and the method is not the result. And method can be contradictory. So we have to understand it because these one hundred and twelve methods are methods of centering.

But once you become centered you will explode. Centering is just to gather yourself totally at one point. Once you are gathered at one point, crystallized at one point, that point explodes automatically. Then there is no center – or then the center is everywhere. So centering is a means to explode.

Why does centering become the method? If you are not centered your energy is unfocused, it cannot explode. It is spread out; it cannot explode. Explosion needs great energy. Explosion means that now you are not spread out – you are at one point. You become atomic; you become, really, a spiritual atom. And only when you are centered enough to become an atom can you explode. Then there is an atomic explosion.

That explosion is not talked about because it cannot be, so only the method is given. The result is not talked about. It cannot be talked about. If you do the method the result will follow, and there is no way to express it.

So remember this: basically, religion never talks about the experience itself, it talks only about the method; it shows the how, not the what. The what is left to you. If you do the how, the what will come to you. And there is no way to convey it. One can know it, but he cannot convey it. It is such an infinite experience that language becomes useless. The vastness is such that no word is capable of expressing it. So only the method is given.

Buddha is reported to have said continuously for forty years, “Do not ask me about the truth, about the divine, about nirvana, liberation. Do not ask me anything about such things. Just ask me how to reach there. I can show you the path, but I cannot give you the experience, not even in words.” The experience is personal; method is impersonal. Method is scientific, impersonal; experience is always personal and poetic.

What do I mean when I differentiate in this way? Method is scientific. If you can do it, centering will result. That centering is bound to result if the method is done. If the centering is not happening, then you can know that you are missing the point somewhere. Somewhere you have missed the method; you have not followed it. Method is scientific; centering is scientific; but when the explosion comes to you, it is poetic.

By poetic, I mean every one of you will experience it in a different way. Then there is no common ground. And everyone will express it in a different way. Buddha says something, Mahavir says something, Krishna says something else, and Jesus, Mohammed, Moses and Lao Tsu, they all differ – not in methods, but in the way they express their experience. Only on one thing do they all agree, that whatsoever they are saying is not expressing that which they have felt. Only on that one point do they agree.

Still, they try. Still, they try to convey somehow, to hint. It seems impossible, but if you have a sympathetic heart something may be conveyed. But that needs a deep sympathy and love and reverence. So really, whenever something is conveyed it doesn’t depend on the conveyer, it depends on you. If you can receive it in deep love and reverence, then something reaches you. But if you are critical about it, then nothing reaches. Firstly, it is difficult to express. And even if it is expressed you are critical – then the message becomes impossible; there is no communication.

The communication is very delicate. That is why in all these one hundred and twelve methods it has been left out completely – only hinted at. Shiva says so many times: “Do this, and then the experience,” and then he becomes silent. “Do this, and then the blessing,” and then he becomes silent.

“The blessing, the experience, the explosion”: beyond them there is personal experience. With that which cannot be expressed, it is better not to try to express it – because if expression is tried with that which cannot be expressed, it will be misunderstood. So Shiva is silent. He is talking simply of methods, techniques, of how to do it.

But centering is not the end; it is just the path. And why does centering happen, develop, grow into an explosion? Because if much energy is centered at one point, the point will explode. The point is so small and the energy is so great, the point cannot contain it; hence the explosion.

This bulb can contain a particular quantity of electricity. If there is more electricity, the bulb will explode. That is the reason for centering: the more you are centered, the more energy is at your center. The moment there is much energy, the center won’t be able to contain it. It will explode.

So it is scientific; it is just a scientific law. And if the center is not exploding, that means you are still not centered. Once you are centered, immediately the explosion follows. There is no time gap. So if you feel that the explosion is not coming, it means that you are still not focused. Still you do not have one center, still you have many centers, still you are divided, still your energy is dissipated, still your energy is moving out.

When the energy moves out you are just being emptied of energy, dissipated. Ultimately you will become impotent. Really, when death comes you have already died; you are just a dead cell. You have been constantly throwing energy outward – so whatsoever may be the quantity of energy, within a period you will become empty. Outgoing energy means death. You are dying every moment; your energy is being emptied; you are throwing your energy, dissipating it.

They say that even the sun which has been there for millions and millions of years, such a great reservoir of energy, is being emptied constantly. And within four billion years it will die. The sun will die simply because there will be no energy to radiate. Every day it is dying because the rays are carrying its energy toward the boundaries of the universe, if there are any boundaries. The energy is going out.

Only man is capable of transforming and changing the direction of energy. Otherwise death is a natural phenomenon – everything dies. Only man is capable of knowing the immortal, the deathless.

So you can reduce this whole thing into a law. If energy is moving out, death will be the result and you will never know what life means. You can only know a slow dying. You can never feel the intensity of being alive. If energy moves out then death is the automatic result – of anything, whatsoever. If you can change the direction of energy – energy not moving out, but moving in – then a mutation, a transformation happens.

Then this energy coming in becomes centered at one point in you. That point is just near the navel – because really, you are born as a navel. You are connected with your mother at the navel. The life energy of the mother is being poured into you through the navel. And once the navel cord is cut, you are separated from the mother, you become an individual. Before that you are not an individual, just part of your mother.

So real birth takes place when the navel cord is cut. Then the child takes its own life, becomes its own center. That center is bound to be just at the navel, because through the navel the energy comes to the child. That was the connecting link. And still, whether you are aware or not, your navel remains the center.

If energy begins to pour in, if you change the direction of the energy so that it comes in, it will hit the navel. It will go on coming in and become centered at the navel. When it is so much that the navel cannot contain it, that the center cannot contain it any longer, the center explodes. In that explosion, again you are no longer an individual. You were not an individual when you were connected with your mother; again you will not be an individual.

A new birth has taken place. You have become one with the cosmos. Now you do not have any center; you cannot say “I.” Now there is no ego. A Buddha, a Krishna, goes on talking and using the word ‘I’. That is simply formal; they do not have any ego. They are not.

Buddha was dying. The day he was to die, many, many people, disciples, sannyasi, gathered, and they were sad; they were weeping and crying. So Buddha asked, “Why are you weeping?” Someone said, “Because soon you will be no more.”

Buddha laughed and said, “But I have been no more for forty years. I died the day I became enlightened. The center has not been there for forty years. So do not weep, do not be sad. No one is dying now. I am no more! But still the word ‘I’ has to be used even to denote that I am no more.”

Energy moving in is the whole of religion, is what is meant by the religious search. How to move the energy, how to create a total about turn? These methods help. So remember, centering is not samadhi, centering is not the experience. Centering is the door to the experience, and when there is the experience there is no centering. So centering is just a passage.

You are not centered now: you are multi-centered really. That is why I say you are not centered now. When you become centered, there is only one center. Then the energy that has been moving to multi-centers has come back; it is a homecoming. Then you are at your center; then . . . explosion. Again the center is no more, but then you are not multi-centered. Then there is no center at all. You have become one with the cosmos. Then existence and you mean one and the same thing.

For example, an iceberg is floating in the sea. The iceberg has a center of its own. It has a separate individuality; it is separate from the ocean. Deep down it is not separate, because it is nothing but water at a particular degree of temperature. The difference between the ocean water and the iceberg is not in their nature – naturally, they are the same. The difference is only of temperature. And then the sun rises, and the atmosphere becomes hot, and the iceberg begins to melt. Then there is no iceberg: it has melted. Now you cannot find it because there is no individuality, no center in it. It has become one with the ocean.

In you and in Buddha, in those who were crucifying Jesus and in Jesus, in Krishna and in Arjuna, there is no difference in nature. Arjuna is like an iceberg and Krishna is like an ocean. There is no difference in nature. They both are one and the same, but Arjuna has a form, a name – an individual, isolated existence. He feels, “I am.”

Through these methods of centering, the temperature will change, the iceberg will melt, and then there will be no difference. That oceanic feeling is samadhi; that being an iceberg is mind. And to feel oceanic is to be a no-mind.

Centering is just the passage, the point of transformation from which the iceberg will be no more. Before it there was no ocean – only an iceberg. After it there will be no iceberg – only ocean. The oceanic feeling is samadhi: it is to feel oneself one with the whole.

But I am not saying to think oneself one with the whole. You can think, but thinking is before centering; that is not realization. You do not know – you have only heard; you have read. You wish that someday this may happen to you also, but you have not realized. Before centering you can go on thinking, but that thinking is of no use. After centering there is no thinker. You know! It has happened! You are no more; only the ocean is. Centering is the method. Samadhi is the end.

Nothing has been said about what happens in samadhi because nothing can be said. And Shiva is very scientific. He is not interested at all in telling. He is telegraphic; he will not use a single extra word. So he simply hints: “The experience, the blessing, the happening.” Not only this, sometimes he will simply say, “Then.” He will say, “Be centered between two breaths and then.” And then he will stop. Then sometimes he will simply say, “Be in the middle, just in the middle between two extremes, and that.”

These are indications – “That, then, the experience, the blessing, the happening, the explosion.” But then he stops completely. Why? We would like him to say something more.

Two reasons. One: That cannot be explained. Why can it not be explained? There are thinkers – for example, modern positivists, language analysts and others in Europe – who say that which can be experienced can be explained. And they have a point to make. They say if you can experience it, then why cannot you tell of it. After all, what is an experience? You have understood it, so why can you not make it understood for others? So they say that if there is any experience, then it can be expressed. And if you cannot express it, it shows simply that there is no experience. Then you are a muddlehead – confused, blurred. And if you cannot even express it, then there is no possibility that you will be able to experience.

Because of this standpoint, they say religion is all hokum. Why can you not express it if you can say you have experienced? Their point appeals to many, but their argument is baseless. Leave aside religious experiences, ordinary experiences also cannot be explained and expressed – very simple experiences.

I have a pain in my head, and if you have never experienced a headache, I cannot explain to you what a headache means. That doesn’t mean that I am muddleheaded; that doesn’t mean that I am only thinking and I am not experiencing. The headache is there. I experience it in its totality, in its full painfulness. But if you have not experienced a headache, it cannot be explained, it cannot be expressed to you. If you also have experienced it, then of course there is no problem, it can be expressed.

Buddha’s difficulty is that he has to talk with non-buddhas – not non-Buddhists, because non- Buddhists can also be buddhas. Jesus is a non-Buddhist, but he is a buddha. Because Buddha is to communicate with those who have not experienced, there is a difficulty. You do not know what a headache is. There are many who have not known headaches. They have only heard the word; it means nothing to them.

You can talk with a blind man about light, but nothing is conveyed. He hears the word ‘light’, he hears the explanation. He can understand the whole theory of light, but still the word ‘light’ conveys nothing to him. Unless he can experience, communication is impossible. So note it: communication is possible only if two persons are communicating who have had the same experience.

We are able to communicate in ordinary life because our experiences are similar. But even then, if one is going to split hairs then there will be difficulties. I say the sky is blue and you also say the sky is blue, but how are we to decide that my experience of blue and your experience of blue is the same? There is no possible way to decide.

I may be looking at one shade of blue and you may be looking at a different shade of blue, but what I am looking at inside, what I am experiencing, cannot be conveyed to you. I can simply say “blue.” You also say “blue,” but blue has a thousand shades – and not only shades, ‘blue’ has thousands of meanings. In my pattern of mind, blue may mean one thing. To you it may mean something else, because blue is not the meaning. The meaning is always in the pattern of the mind. So even in common experiences it is difficult to communicate.

oreover, there are experiences which are of the beyond. For example, someone has fallen in love. He experiences something. His whole life is at stake, but he cannot explain what has happened to him, what is happening to him. He can weep, he can sing, he can dance; these are indications that something is happening in him. But what is happening in him? When love happens to someone, what is happening really? And love is not very uncommon. It happens to everyone in some way or other. But still, we have not been able to express yet what happens inside.

There are persons who feel love as a fever, as a sort of disease. Rousseau says that youth is not the peak of human life, because youth is prone to the disease called love. Unless one becomes so old that love loses all meaning, mind remains muddled and puzzled. So wisdom is possible only in very, very old age. Love will not allow you to be wise – that is his feeling.

There are others who may feel differently. Those who are really wise will become silent about love. They will not say anything – because the feeling is so infinite, so deep, that language is bound to betray it. And if it is expressed then one feels guilty, because one can never do justice to the feeling of the infinite. So one remains silent: the deeper the experience, the less the possibility of expression.

Buddha remained silent about God not because there is no God. And those who are very much vocal about God really show they have no experience. Buddha remained silent. Whenever he would go to any town, he would declare, “Please, do not ask anything about God. You can ask anything, but not about God.”

Scholars, pundits, who had no experience really but only knowledge, started talking about Buddha and creating rumors, saying, “He is silent because he doesn’t know. If he knows then why will he not say?” And Buddha would laugh. That laughter could be understood only by very few.

If love cannot be expressed, then how can God be expressed? Then any expression is harmful – that is one thing. That is why Shiva is silent about the experience. He goes to the point from where a finger can be used as an indication – “Then, that, the experience” – and then he becomes silent.

The second reason is: even if it can be expressed in a certain way, even if it can be expressed only Partially . . . Even if it cannot be expressed, really, then too some parallels can be created to help. But those too Shiva is not using, and there is a reason. It is because our minds are so greedy that whenever something is said about that experience the mind clings to it. And then the mind forgets the method and remembers only the experience, because method needs effort – a long effort which is sometimes tedious, sometimes dangerous. A long sustained effort is needed.

So we forget about the method. We remember the result and we go on imagining, wishing, desiring the result. And one can fool oneself very easily. One can imagine that the result has been achieved.

Someone was here a few days before. He is a sannyasin – an old man, a very old man. He took sannyas thirty years ago; now he is near seventy. He came to me and he said,  ‘I have come to make some inquiries, to know something.”

So I asked him, “What do you want to know?”

Suddenly he changed. He said, “No, not to know really – just to meet you, because whatsoever can be known I have known already.”

For thirty years he has been imagining, desiring – desiring bliss, divine experiences – and now, at this late age, he has become weak and death is near. Now he is creating hallucinations that he has experienced. So I told him, “If you have experienced, then keep silent. Be here with me for a few moments because then there is no need to talk.”

Then he became restless. He said, “Okay! Then suppose that I have not experienced. Then tell me something.”

So I told him, “There is no possibility with me to suppose anything. Either you have known or you have not known,” I said. “So be clear about it. If you have known, then keep quiet. Be here for a few moments and then go. If you have not known, then be clear. Then tell me so.”

Then he was puzzled. He had come to inquire about some methods. Then he said, “Really, I have not experienced, but I have been thinking so much about aham brahmasi – I am the brahman – that sometimes I forget that I have only been thinking. I have repeated it so much, day and night, for thirty years continuously, that sometimes I completely forget that I have not known this. It is just a borrowed saying.”

It is difficult to remember what is knowledge and what is experience. They get confused; they get mingled and mixed. And it is very easy to feel that your knowledge has become your experience. The human mind is so deceptive, so cunning, that that is possible. That is another reason why Shiva has remained silent about the experience. He will not say anything about it. He goes on talking about methods, remaining completely silent about the result. You cannot be deceived by him.

That is one of the reasons why this book, one of the most significant of books, has remained altogether unknown. This Vigyana Bhairava Tantra is one of the most significant books in the world. No Bible, no Veda, no Gita is so significant, but it has remained completely unknown. The reason? It contains only simple methods without any possibility for your greed to cling to the result. The mind wants to cling to the result. The mind is not interested in the method; it is interested in the end result. And if you can bypass the method and reach the result, the mind will be extremely happy.

Someone was asking me, “Why so many methods? Kabir has said, ‘sahaj samadhi bhali – be spontaneous.’ Spontaneous ecstasy is good, so there is no need of methods.”

I told him, “If you have achieved sahaj samadhi – spontaneous ecstasy – then of course no method is useful; there is no need. Why have you come here?”

He said, “I have not achieved yet, but I feel that sahaj – the spontaneous – is better.”

“But why do you feel that the spontaneous is better?” I said. Because no method is suggested, the mind feels good that you have nothing to do – and without doing, you can have everything!

Because of this Zen has become a craze in the West – because Zen says, achieve it effortlessly; there is no need of effort. Zen is right; there is no need for an effort. But remember, to achieve this point of no-effort you will need a long, long effort. To achieve a point where no effort is needed, to achieve a point where you can remain in non-doing, a long effort will be needed. But the superficial conclusion that Zen says no effort is needed has become very appealing in the West. If no effort is needed then the mind says: this is the right thing, because you can do it without doing anything. But no one can do it.

Suzuki, who made Zen known in the West, has done a service and also a disservice. And the disservice will remain for a longer period. He was a very authentic man, one of the most authentic men of this century, and for his whole life he struggled to carry the message of Zen to the West. And alone, with his own effort, he made it known in the West. And now there is a craze; there are Zen friends all over the West. Nothing appeals like Zen now.

But the point is missed. The appeal has come only because Zen says no method is needed, no effort is needed. You do not have to do anything; spontaneously it flowers.

This is right – but you are not spontaneous, so it will never flower in you. To be spontaneous . . . It looks absurd and contradictory, because for you to be spontaneous many methods are needed to purify you, to make you innocent so that you can be spontaneous. Otherwise you cannot be spontaneous in anything.

This Vigyana Bhairava Tantra was translated into English by Paul Reps. He has written a very beautiful book, Zen Flesh, Zen Bones, and just in the appendix he included this book Vigyana Bhairava Tantra. The whole book is concerned with Zen; just in the appendix he added this book also, the one hundred and twelve methods, and he called it a pre-Zen writing. Many Zen followers didn’t like this because they said, “Zen says no effort is needed, and this book is concerned only with effort. This book is concerned only with methods, and Zen says no method, no effort is needed. So it is anti-Zen, not pre-Zen.” Superficially they are right, but deep down they are not, because to achieve a spontaneous being one has to travel a long way.

One of Gurdjieff’s disciples, Ouspensky, used to say, whenever someone would come to him to ask about the path, “We don’t know anything about the path. We only teach about some footpaths which lead to the path. The path is not known to us.” Do not think that you are already on the path. Even the path is far away. From where you are, from that point, even the path is far away. So first you have to reach to the path. Ouspensky was a very humble man, and it is very difficult to be religious and to be humble – very, very difficult, because once you begin to feel that you know, the head goes mad. He would always say, “We don’t know anything about the path. It is very far away, and there is no need just now to discuss it.” Wherever you are, first you have to create a link, a small bridge, a footpath which will lead you to the path.

Spontaneity – sahaj samadhi yoga – is very far away from you. In the place where you are, you are totally artificial, cultivated and cultured. Nothing is spontaneous – nothing, I say, is spontaneous. When nothing is spontaneous in your life, how can religion be spontaneous? When nothing is spontaneous, even love is not spontaneous. Even love is a bargain, even love is a calculation, even love is an effort. Then nothing can be spontaneous. And then to explode spontaneously into the cosmos is impossible.

From the situation you are in, from that situation it is impossible. First you will have to throw away all your artificiality, all your false attitudes, all your cultivated conventions, all your prejudices. Only then will a spontaneous happening be possible. These methods will help you to come to a point from where nothing is needed to be done – just your being is enough. But mind can deceive. And mind easily deceives, because then it can get consolation.

Shiva never talks about any result, just methods. Remember this emphasis. Do something, so that a moment may be possible when nothing is needed, when your central being can just dissolve into the cosmos. But that has to be achieved. Zen’s appeal is for the wrong reasons, and the same is true for Krishnamurti, because he says no yoga is needed, no method is needed. Really, he says there is no method of meditation. He is right.

He is right, but Shiva says these one hundred and twelve methods of meditation are there, and Shiva is also right. And as far as you are concerned, Shiva is more right. And if you have to choose between Krishnamurti and Shiva, then choose Shiva. Krishnamurti is of no use to you. Even this can be said to help you – that Krishnamurti is absolutely wrong. Remember, I say to help you. And he is harmful. That too I say to help you, because if you get into his argument you will not achieve samadhi. You will achieve only one conclusion – that no method is needed. And that is dangerous. For you method is needed!

There comes a moment when no method is needed, but that moment has not come for you yet. And before that moment, to know about something that is ahead is dangerous. That is why Shiva is silent. He will not say anything of the future, of what will happen. He simply sticks to you, to what you are and what is to be done with you. Krishnamurti goes on talking in terms which cannot be understood by you.

The logic can be felt. The logic is right; it is beautiful. It will be good if you can remember the logic of Krishnamurti. He says that if you are doing some method, then who is doing that method? The mind is doing it. And how can any method done by mind dissolve mind? Rather, on the contrary, it will strengthen it more; it will strengthen your mind more. It will become a conditioning, it will be false.

So meditation is spontaneous; you cannot do anything about it. What can you do about love? Can you practice any method for how to love? If you practice, then your love will be false. It happens, it cannot be practiced. If even love cannot be practiced, how can prayer be practiced? How can meditation be practiced?

The logic is exactly, absolutely right – but not for you, because by listening to this logic continuously you will be conditioned by this logic. And those who have been listening to Krishnamurti for forty years are the most conditioned persons I have come across. They say there is no method, and still they are nowhere.

I say, “You have understood there is no method and you do not practice any method, but has the spontaneity flowered in you?” They say, “No!”

And if I tell them, “Then practice some method,” immediately their conditioning comes in. They say, “There is no method.”

They have not been practicing any method, and samadhi has not happened. And if you tell them, “Then try some method,” they say there is no method. So they are in a dilemma. They have not moved an inch, and the reason is that they have been told something which was not for them.

It is like teaching a small child about sex. You can go on teaching, but you are saying something which is as yet meaningless for the child. And your teaching will be dangerous because you are conditioning his mind. It is not his need; he is not concerned with it. He doesn’t know what sex means because his glands are still not functioning; his body is still not sexual. His energy has not yet moved biologically to the sex center, and you are talking to him. Because he has ears, do you think that anything can be taught to him? Because he can nod his head, do you think you can teach him anything?

You can teach, and your teaching can become dangerous and harmful. Sex is not an inquiry for him, it has not become a problem for him. He has not reached that point of maturity where sex becomes significant. Wait! When he begins to inquire, when he matures and when he asks questions, then tell him. And never tell more than he can understand, because that more will become a burden on his head. It is the same with the phenomenon of meditation.

You can be taught only about methods, not about results – that is taking a jump. And without getting a foothold on the method, taking the jump is simply a cerebral affair, a mental affair. And then you will always miss the method.

It is like small children doing arithmetic. They can always go to the back of the book and can know the answer. The answer is there; at the back of the book, the answers are given. They can look at the question, then they can go to the back and know the answer. And once a child knows the answer it is very difficult for him to learn the method, because there seems to be no need. When he already knows the answer, there is no need.

And really, he will do the whole thing in reverse order. Then through any false, pseudo method he will arrive at the answer. He knows the real thing, he knows the answer, so he can arrive at the answer by just creating a false method. And this happens so much in religion that it seems, as far as religion is concerned, everyone is just doing what children do.

The answer is not good for you. The question is there, the method is there, and the answer must be reached by you. No one else should give you the answer. The real teachers do not help you to know the answer before the process is done, they simply help you to go through the process. In fact, even if you have known somehow, even if you have stolen some answer from somewhere, they will say that this is wrong. It may not be wrong, but they will say, “This is wrong. Throw this – it is not needed.” They will debar you from knowing the answer before you really come to know it. That is why no answer is given.

Shiva’s beloved, Devi, has asked him questions. He is giving simple methods. The question is there, the method is there. The answer is left for you to work out, to live out.

So remember, centering is the method, not the result. The result is cosmic, oceanic experience. There is no center then.

-Osho

From The Book of Secrets, Discourse #14, Q1

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.

Many of Osho’s books are available in the U.S. online from Amazon.com and Viha Osho Book Distributors. In India they are available from Amazon.in and Oshoworld.com.

The Emptiness of the Heart – Osho

Maneesha, Bukko has come to the ultimate expression of the experience of one’s own being. Very rarely has a master succeeded to such a point as Bukko has in his statements.

Listen carefully, because rarely will you meet a Bukko again.

Bukko said:

Taking things easily and without forcing, after some time the rush of thought, outward and inward, subsides naturally, and the true face shows itself.

That’s what I have been telling you. To be a buddha is not a difficult job. It is not some achievement for which you need a Nobel Prize. It is the easiest thing in the world, because it has already happened without your knowing.

The buddha is already breathing in you. Just a little recognition, just a little turning inwards . . . and that has not to be done forcibly. If you do it forcibly you will miss the point. It is very delicate. You have to look inward playfully, not seriously. That’s what he means by “taking things easily.” Don’t take anything seriously.

Existence is very easy. You have got your life without any effort; you are living your life without any effort. You are breathing perfectly well without being reminded; your heartbeat continues even in your sleep — so easy is existence with you! But you are not so easy with existence. You are very close-fisted. You want everything to be turned into an achievement.

Enlightenment cannot be an achievement. That which you have already — how can it be an achievement? The authentic master simply takes away things which you don’t have and you believe you have, and he gives you that which you already have. You are having many things which you don’t have at all, you just believe that you have them. The master’s function is that of a surgeon, to cut all that is not you and leave behind just the essential core — the eternal being.

It is a very easy phenomenon; you can do it on your own. There are no problems and no risk in taking things easily, but people take things very tensely. They take things very seriously, and that spoils the whole game.

And remember, life is a game. Once you understand it as a game, a deep playfulness arises on its own accord. The victory is not the point; the point is to play totally, joyously, dancingly.

What is called playfulness is very essential in the inquiry of your own being.

Taking things easily and without forcing, after some time the rush of thought, outward and inward, subsides naturally, and the true face shows itself.

When I say to you that meditation is nothing but thoughtlessness, you can misunderstand me. You are not to do anything to become thoughtless, because whatever you will do will be again a thought. You have to learn to see the procession of thoughts, standing by the side of the road as if it does not matter to you what is passing by. Just the ordinary traffic — if you can take your thoughts in such a manner that they are not of much concern, then easily, slowly, the caravan of thoughts which has continued for thousands of years disappears.

You have to understand a simple thing, that giving attention is giving nourishment. If you don’t give any attention but remain unconcerned, the thoughts start dying on their own. They don’t have any other way to get energy, any other source of life. You are their energy, and because you go on giving them attention, seriously, you think it is very difficult to be free from thought. It is the easiest thing in the world, but it has to be done in the right way.

The right way is just to stand by the side. The traffic goes on — let it go. Don’t make any judgment of good and bad; don’t appreciate, don’t condemn. That is what is meant by being easy. It is all okay.

Without forcing . . . and that is something that has to be remembered, because our natural tendency is that if we have to become thoughtless, why not force the thoughts? Why not throw them out? But by the very act of forcing them, you are giving them energy, you are giving them nourishment, you are taking note of them and you are making them important — so important that without throwing them, you cannot meditate.

Just try to throw out any single thought, and you will see how difficult it is. The more you throw it the more it bounces back! It will enjoy the game very much, and you are going to be defeated finally. You have taken a wrong route. […]

You cannot repress any thought. The very repressive process gives it energy, life, strength. And it weakens you because you become a defeated partner in the game. The easiest thing is not to force but to be just a witness. If a monkey comes, let him come. Just say “Hello!” and he will go. But don’t tell him to go. Just be a witness that a monkey has come, or a thousand monkeys have come. What does it matter? It is none of your business. They may be going to some gathering, some religious festival, so let them go. It is none of your concern. And soon the crowd will disappear, seeing that “the man is not interested.”

All your thoughts are in the same category. Never force any thought to go away; otherwise, it will rebound with greater energy. And the energy is yours! You are on a self-defeating track. The more you throw it away the more it will come back.

Hence, what Bukko is saying is the only way — I say the only way — to be thoughtless: don’t pay any attention. Just remain silently watching all kinds of things . . . monkeys and elephants, let them pass. Soon you will find an empty road, and when you find an empty road, you have found an empty mind — naturally. Everything outward and inward subsides and there is the tremendous silence which easiness brings.

Now body and mind, free from all motivations, always appear as void and absolute sameness.

When you are in the state of no-mind, which is equivalent to thoughtlessness . . . when there is no thought cloud moving in your mind, you attain to the clarity of no-mind. Mind is simply a combination of all the thoughts, of all the clouds. Mind has no independent nature of its own. When all the thoughts are gone and the sky is clean and clear, you will see that everything that you have paid so much attention to is nothing but emptiness. Your thoughts were all empty. They contained nothing; they were void. Whatever you thought they contained was your own energy. You have withdrawn your energy — just the empty shell of the thought falls down. You have withdrawn your identity and immediately the thought is no longer alive. It was your identity that was giving it life force.

And strangely enough, you thought that your thoughts were very strong and it was difficult to get rid of them! You were making them strong, you were cultivating them. Just by forcing them, you were getting into a fix.

I agree with Bukko. I have agreed out of my own experience that you can simply sit or lie down and let the thoughts pass by. They will not leave even a trace. Just don’t get interested . . . and don’t be disinterested either, just be neutral. To be neutral is to be easy, and to be neutral is to take back the very life force that you have given to your thoughts.

Suddenly, a man of no thought becomes so full of energy — energy which he had spread into the thoughts unnecessarily. He was weak because he was nourishing thoughts, which leads nowhere. They promise — thoughts are politicians. They promise great things to come, but the moment they have power, they forget all their promises. This has been going on for centuries.

Those promises are just seductive. Your thoughts are promising you many things: “You can be this, you can be that.” And they drive you, they give you motivation to become the greatest leader in the world, to become the richest man in the world. They drive you into ambitions, they become your masters. It is one of the weirdest phenomena that the servants become masters, and the master becomes just a servant. The moment you take your energy back you become a tremendous force, gathered in your own being and center.

This is the first and the most important thing to understand: never force anything, just let it go easily. If you ever want to find out what the secret of your life is, then you have to go inwards. And thoughts are always going outwards; every thought takes you outwards. When all thoughts cease, there is nowhere to go — you simply are at home.

This at-homeness is meditation.

Utter silence and peace prevails.

In this silence every ambition seems to be stupid; the whole world of objects seems to be nothing but a dream. And your own being shines in its brightness of heaven, at the center of the vast expanse of phenomenal things, and needing no polishing or cleaning.

Your own being is so pure, so unpolluted, not even a particle of dust has ever reached there — cannot reach. Only your consciousness can reach there, and consciousness arises in you with no-mind. With no-mind you become so wakeful, so watchful — nowhere to go outside, because all thoughts are gone. So you turn inwards, and for the first time face your own original being.

This is beyond all concepts . . .

What you are going to face in your meditation is beyond all concepts.

This is a very pregnant statement.  . . . beyond being and non-being. We are using the word `being’ because you will not be able to understand, while your thoughts are there, that something beyond being and beyond non-being is in existence within you. But when thoughts are gone, the first encounter is with a being, an individual being, bright and clean. And as you enter this being, you find yourself going beyond your individuality into the universal, which is beyond being and non-being. This is what ultimate enlightenment is. And Bukko has put it in the simplest possible way.

Leave your innumerable knowings and seeings and understandings, and go to that greatness of space. When you come to that vastness, there is no speck of Buddhism in your heart.

He is really a great master. His love towards Buddha is great, but that does not mean that he is a follower of Buddha. He is saying that when you enter into this great space, you will not find anything — no speck of Buddhism even in your heart. And when there is no speck of knowledge about you — you will not know anything, even about yourself — you will have the true sight of the Buddhas and the great masters.

Buddha himself had a great difficulty. Perhaps no man has had such a great difficulty in explaining his experience. In this country, the self, atma, has been considered to be the ultimate experience. The two other religions of this country, Hinduism and Jainism, have both emphasized that to know your self is all, there is nothing beyond it. Now, Buddha was going against all of India’s traditions by saying that the self is only a door to no-self. Don’t stop at the door, it is a bridge to be passed. Don’t make your house on the bridge because a vaster universe is ready to welcome you if you can leave this small idea of your self.

What is this self that you carry, that all the traditions of this country and other countries think so much of? Hundreds of philosophers came to Gautam Buddha, saying, “What you are saying goes against the Vedas, against the Upanishads.”

He said, “What can I do? It is my own experience; I cannot deny it. The self has to be transcended; only then you become one with the universe. The dewdrop has to disappear into the ocean.”

Why cling to the dewdrop?

What are you gaining by it?

Have you ever observed? — all the religions teach that you should liberate yourself from misery, from sin. You should earn virtue so that you can make a place in paradise. “You” are the center of all the religions — but not of Zen.

All the religions say, “Liberate yourself from your attachments.” Only Zen has the strange courage to say, “Liberate yourself from yourself!” Liberating yourself from your attachments is child’s play. The real, authentic seeker finally liberates himself not only from other things but even from himself. He drops the very idea that ‘I am’. Existence is.

Looked at from this viewpoint, it can be said that you are the center of all misery. And however you try, you will find you are only changing misery, from one misery to another misery. Maybe in the gap you feel a little light. From one marriage to another marriage — just in the meantime, while you have to wait, you feel good. But this goodness is not going to last, you are already filling in the form for another marriage. You are the problem. All other problems are just your children — a bus load of children, and you are the driver.

Buddhism, particularly, introduced the idea that it is not a question of dropping this greed, that anger, this passion, that possession. The question is of dropping yourself completely, disappearing into the universal energy from where we have arisen. In India, Buddha was not understood. I am experiencing the same thing. In India I am not understood, because India has, for ten thousand years or more, believed in the self as the ultimate value.

Self is not the ultimate value. What are you going to do with the self when you find it? Just sitting stupidly, looking weird to everybody. Just for a moment think: You have found your self, now what are you going to do? And remember, once you have found it, you cannot escape from it. It clings like German glue! It is not Indian glue . . .

Buddha took a tremendous step in the world of consciousness when he said, “The self is only a stepping stone. Step beyond it! And going beyond it, you are just empty.” But this “empty” is not nothingness. The word that Buddha used has been translated either as “emptiness” or as “nothingness,” but in English both words have a negative connotation. Buddha’s word was shunyata. It is not a negative phenomenon.

Bukko gives it perhaps the best expression I have come across:

When you can go and come in all regions equally, when there is nothing specially yours, no within, no without, when you conform to high and conform to low, conform to the square and conform to the round, that is it.

When you are simply available, with no self, you don’t have any boundaries anymore. Without boundaries you can conform to anything.

The emptiness of the sea allows waves to rise . . .

And your emptiness will also allow waves of blissfulness, peacefulness, splendor and unknown glory. You are at the highest peak available to any consciousness. But all these are still waves according to Bukko. That’s why I say he has made a great statement.

The emptiness of the sea allows waves to rise; the emptiness of the mountain valley makes the voice echo . . .

It is empty; otherwise how can it echo the voice?

Just nearby in Matheran, there is an echo point. A very clear echo point — I have seen other echo points in other mountains also. Whatever you say it simply repeats, the whole valley. If you bark like a dog, the whole valley barks like a dog. If you sing a song, the whole valley sings the song. Its emptiness allows it to conform to anything.

And Bukko is saying that when you are utterly empty of being and no-being, of mind and no-mind . . . When you are just merged into the universal it can be said from one side that you are empty, but from the other side you are so full that now you can conform to anything. You can be the moon, you can be the rose, you can be the clouds. Or you can just remain the empty sky.

For the first time you are free to be anything you want. For the first time your emptiness allows you to experience existence from different angles. It is a vast phenomenon. We know only small parts of it because our self-ness creates a boundary. We cannot go beyond the boundary.

The emptiness of the heart makes the buddha.

Once your heart is empty, you are the buddha — serene, silent, utterly blissful, at home. When I say to you that you are a buddha, I mean it. It is just that you have to recover from your dreams, afflictions, addictions. You just have to penetrate deeply to the point where even the self starts disappearing and the door opens to the vast, to the infinite. To be a buddha is the ultimate experience of joy, of eternity, of immortality, freedom and liberation.

And nobody else can do it for you. It is simple: you have to do it yourself.

When you empty the heart, things appear as in a mirror, shining there without differences between them. Life and death as illusion, all the buddhas are one’s own body. Zen is not something mysterious; it is just hitting and piercing through.

I am reminded . . . A great industrialist had imported a totally new, sophisticated machine.

It worked so beautifully, a hundred times more productive than the older one, but one day it stopped. Nobody knew what to do.

The manufacturers were informed, and they said, “We can send our man. But his fee is ten thousand dollars plus all traveling expenses.”

The industrialist was losing thousands of dollars every day. He agreed; he said, “Send him immediately, right now.” The man came from the airport and without wasting a single moment, he took from his handbag a small hammer and hit the machine at a certain point and it started working.

The owner of the factory said, “But this is too much! Ten thousand dollars just for hitting it with this little hammer?” The expert said, “No, for hitting with the hammer just one dollar will do. The real thing is knowing where to hit.”

It is true, Zen is not something mysterious. It is just hitting and piercing through.

But don’t believe in Bukko. The point is where to hit. It is not mysterious, but the problem is where to hit. Once you hit at the right time, at the right place, it is really very simple; there is nothing mysterious about it.

That’s what I have been continuously trying to get you to experience, because there is no way to tell you where to hit. Everybody has to find the place by going deeper into himself, seeing where the light is coming from, where the life is coming from, and the moving in that direction without any fear. This is what he means by “hitting and piercing through.”

Then don’t stop. It will be very beautiful. Even in the beginning, the moment you see your light, your life source, it will have a tremendous beauty and there will be a desire to stop, that you have arrived. Don’t do that. Much more lies ahead. Until you are finished completely… when you look all around and you don’t find yourself — that is the goal.

This beyond is the buddha.

If you cut off all doubts, the course of life-and-death is cut off naturally. I ask you all: do you see it of don’t you? — How in June the snow melts from the top of Mount Fuji.

He is saying that just as in June the snow starts melting from Mount Fuji . . . so simply, without making any fuss. As June comes, the snow does not say, “Wait a little, I am engaged in something else and I have to wait a little.” No — no resistance, no delaying, no postponing. As June comes, the snow starts melting.

So when you reach to the point where you feel, “this is my center,” then start melting. Your June has come. Then start melting and disappearing. Your very disappearance is making you the whole universe.

Buddha has said, “When I disappeared, I saw stars within me, sun rising, sunset, full moon nights — everything within me, not without me. It was my boundary that had been keeping them out. Now the boundary is no more; everything has fallen in. Now I am the whole.”

At the time of his death the Zen monk, Guin, wrote:

All doctrines split asunder
Zen teaching cast away
Fourscore years and one.
The sky now cracks and falls
The Earth cleaves open
In the heart of the fire
Lies a hidden spring.

When all is dropping and disappearing, in the heart of all this disappearance is hidden your spring. From this point you will start growing new flowers that you have never seen before.

Maneesha has asked:

Our beloved master,

In the West, they say that love two full hearts makes the world go round. Judging by the casualty rate, full hearts don’t seem to be the answer. What is the world of the empty heart of zen?

In the first place, whatever is said in the West, that “love — two full hearts — makes the world go round” is all nonsense. Whether you are here or not, the world will continue to go round.

And two hearts full of love . . . where are you going to find them?

The world would have stopped long ago if it were dependent on two hearts full of love. Even to find one heart is very difficult; two is too much! But those are just mass-mind oriented proverbs, not statements of a man like Bukko. When Bukko says the empty heart is the buddha, he is talking about a very authentic experience. And it does not depend on anybody else.

Love is both, a joy and a misery, because two are involved. Wherever there is duality, there is going to be conflict. You can put the conflict aside for a few days on the honeymoon, but after the honeymoon the conflict arises on every point. What kind of curtains? — and immediately there are two voices. What kind of carpets, and what kind of literature, what kind of furniture? On every point you will find that those great lovers are in absolute disagreement! There is the beginning of real love, which always ends in divorce.

The world of religion is not the world of duality. It is a world of oneness. You have to find your own heart, utterly empty, empty of all rubbish. And when your heart is empty of all rubbish, you are the buddha. There is no other experience which goes beyond it.

-Osho

From The Buddha: The Emptiness of the Heart, Discourse #1

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.

Many of Osho’s books are available in the U.S. online from Amazon.com and Viha Osho Book Distributors. In India they are available from Amazon.in and Oshoworld.com.

This Very Place the Lotus Paradise – Osho

Man lives in illusion. Man lives through illusion. Man lives for illusion. In short, man lives because of illusion. Hence the fear of truth. Nobody wants truth, although everybody goes on seeking for it. That seeking is a deception, that seeking is an avoidance. To seek truth means to avoid truth.

It has to be understood – how the seeker goes on avoiding truth. To seek means to look far away, to seek means to look somewhere else, to seek means to go on a trip. To seek means to postpone – to seek means it will happen tomorrow or the day after tomorrow, it is not happening right now. It is not here, it is there. It is not this, it is that.

Man goes on living in illusion. But to live in illusion one needs to avoid truth, because if truth comes it will shatter all your illusions and all your so-called life and all your so-called love. Truth looks like a calamity. And Friedrich Nietzsche is right in a sense when he says: Please don’t give truth to humanity. Otherwise, you will destroy people’s joy, you will destroy their enthusiasm, you will destroy their gusto. Don’t give truth to humanity, otherwise all that they have will disappear. Because all that they have is a kind of dream. Don’t wake humanity, otherwise the dreams will be shattered. And they may be seeing beautiful dreams – or hoping to see, somewhere, sometime.

That’s why Christ is crucified, Socrates is poisoned, Buddha is stoned. They bring truth to people who have become almost illusory. They bring light to people who live in darkness and dream in darkness. And their dreams depend on darkness – when somebody brings light into the darkness the darkness disappears and the dreams and the desires.

One feels hurt by a Buddha or a Christ. The Christ looks not like the saviour but like the enemy. Otherwise, why should you crucify Christ? There is no other reason. The basic reason is: he uproots you, he shatters you. This has to be understood very deeply. And when you live in illusion, you search for truth. That is a double deception, so that you can go on telling yourself and consoling yourself that ‘I am searching. Look what great efforts I am making, how much I am putting my energy into the search – look!’

The search for truth arises out of your lie. It is the lie that puts you on the search for truth. It is a protection for the lie, it is the way of the lie to survive. It says: Go and search for truth. It is there far away in some distant land. You will have to travel, and the travel is long and the travel is not going to be finished soon. It will take lives and lives, it will take millennia, but go! Go on searching, one day you will find it. The lie gives you hope, it gives you a future, it gives you future dreams. Your God is somewhere far away. It has to be far away, because close by He will be dangerous. […]

But in your very destruction is the possibility of a new birth. Out of the ashes the new is going to be born. The myth of the phoenix is not a myth, it is a metaphor for man’s rebirth. You have to die first to be reborn. […]

But if you come close to me – and initiation means coming close, initiation means coming as close as possible – you will be burned. You will be burned to ashes. You will disappear.

But that is the only real hope. If you disappear as you are, you will be born as you really are. Only the disappearance of the lie that you have become can be the birth of truth. And truth is not far away, it is just hiding within you. And you are clinging to the lie. Your personality is the lie. And because of the personality you cannot move towards the essence. The personality is taught by the society; the society creates lies. Lies are very, very convenient. Lies function like lubricants, lies make life smooth. You see somebody and you smile. And the smile is a lie – because it is not coming from your heart, it is just painted there on the lips. You have created it, you have managed it, it is a kind of exercise of the lips. But it lubricates relationship, the other man starts smiling.

If you are true, if you are as you are, it will be difficult, the relationship will become difficult. Psychologists say that if every person starts revealing what is in his heart, friendship will disappear from the earth, love will disappear from the earth. That is true. It will be impossible to find friends if you simply say what is in your heart. If you say what is in your heart your beloved will leave you and your lover will leave you.

You go on keeping it in the heart, and you go on playing something which is not really there – you do something else, just the opposite. You may be angry but you smile. You may be hurt but you smile. You may be boiling within but you smile. You may want to scream but you go on singing. You may want to do something else but it is not feasible, it is not practical, it is not the right thing to do.

The society creates this persona, this mask around you, this personality.

There are three you’s in you. You-1 – that is the personality. The word personality comes from a Greek root ’persona’. In the Greek drama they used to use masks, and the voice would come from the mask. ’Sona’ means voice, sound, and ’per’ means through the mask. The real face you don’t know – who the real actor is. There is a mask, and through the mask comes the voice. It appears as if it is coming from the mask, and you don’t know the real face. The word ’personality’ is beautiful, it comes from Greek drama.

And that’s what has happened. In the Greek drama they had only one mask. You have many. Masks upon masks, like layers of an onion. If you put one mask away there is another, if you put that away there is another. And you can go on digging and digging and you will be surprised how many faces you are carrying. How many! For lives you have been collecting them. And they are all useful, because you have to change many times. You are talking to your servant, you cannot have the same face that you have when you talk to your boss. And they may be both present in the room: when you look at the servant you have to use one mask and when you look at your boss you have to use another mask. You continuously change. It has almost become automatic – you need not change, it changes itself. You look at the boss and you are smiling. And you look at the servant and the smile disappears and you are hard – as hard as the boss is to you. When he looks at his boss, he smiles.

In a single moment you may be changing your face many times. One has to be very, very alert to know how many faces one has. Innumerable. They cannot be counted.

This is your first you, the false you. Or call it the ego. It has been given to you by the society, it is a gift from the society – from the politician and the priest and the parent and the pedagogue. They have given you many faces just to make your life smooth. They have taken away your truth, they have given you a substitute. And because of these substitute faces you don’t know who you are. You can’t know, because the faces change so fast and they are so many, you cannot trust yourself. You don’t know exactly which face is yours. In fact none of these faces is yours.

And the Zen people say: Unless you know your original face you will not know what Buddha is. Because Buddha is your original face. You were born as a Buddha and you are living a lie.

This social gift has to be dropped. That is the meaning of sannyas, initiation. You are a Christian or a Hindu or a Mohammedan, that face has to be dropped. Because it is not your own face – it has been given to you by others, you have been conditioned for it. And you have not even been asked, you have not even been requested. It has been imposed forcibly, violently.

All parents are violent and all educational systems are violent. Because they don’t take any note of you. They have a-priori ideas, they already know what is right. And they put the ‘right’ on you. You squirm, you scream inside, but you are helpless. A child is so helpless and so delicate, he can be molded in any way. And that’s what the society does. Before the child becomes strong enough it is already crippled in a thousand and one ways. Paralyzed, poisoned.

The day you want to become religious you will have to drop religions. The day you want to relate to God you will have to drop all ideologies about God. The day you want to know who you are, you will have to drop all the answers that have been given to you. All that is borrowed has to be burnt.

That’s why Zen has been defined as: ‘Direct pointing to the human heart. Seeing the nature and becoming Buddha. Not standing on letters. A separate transmission outside the scriptures.’ A separate transmission outside the scriptures: the Koran cannot give it to you, neither can the Dhammapada nor the Bible nor the Talmud nor the Gita. No scripture can give it to you. And if you believe in the scripture you will go on missing truth.

Truth is in you. It has to be encountered there. ‘Seeing the nature and becoming Buddha. Direct pointing to the human heart.’ You are not to go anywhere. And wherever you go you will remain the same, so what is the point? You can go to the Himalayas; it is not going to change anything. You will carry all that you have with you. All that you have become, all that you have been made, you will carry all your artificiality. Your synthetic faces, your borrowed knowledge, your scriptures, will go on clinging inside you. Even sitting in a cave in the Himalayas alone you will not be alone. The teachers will be there around you, and the priests and the politicians and the parents and the whole society. It may not be so visible but it will be there inside you crowding you. And you will remain a Hindu there or a Christian or a Mohammedan. And you will go on repeating words like parrots. It will not change, it cannot change. […]

Wherever you go you will be yourself. Even in Heaven or in the Himalayas. You cannot be otherwise. The world is not outside you; you are the world. So wherever you go you take your world with you.

The real change has not to be of place, the real change has not to be outside, the real change has to be inner. And what do I mean by real change? I don’t mean that you have to improve upon yourself, because improvement is again a lie. Improvement means you will go on polishing your personality. You can make it immensely beautiful – but remember, the more beautiful it is, the more dangerous, because the more difficult it will be to drop it.

That’s why it happens that sometimes a sinner becomes a saint. But your so-called respectable people never become. They cannot become – they have such valuable person-alities, so much decorated, polished, and they have put so much investment in the personality, their whole life has been a kind of polishing. Now it is too costly to drop those beautiful personalities. A sinner can drop it, he has no investment in it. In fact he is fed-up with it, it is so ugly. But how can a respectable person drop it so easily? It has been paying him so well, it has been such a profit. It has been making him more and more respected, he is going higher and higher, he is reaching the pinnacle of success. It is very difficult for him to stop going on this ladder of success. It is a non-ending ladder, you can go on and on for ever. […]

When you are succeeding in the world it is difficult to stop. When you are becoming richer it is difficult to stop, when you are becoming famous it is difficult to stop. The more refined personality you have, the more it clings to you.

So I am not saying that you have to improve upon yourself. All the great masters, from Buddha to Hakuin, nobody has said to improve. Beware of the so-called ’improvement books’. The American market is full of those books: beware. Because improvement is not going to lead you anywhere. It is not a question of improvement, because by improvement the lie will be improved. The personality will be improved – will become more polished, will become more subtle, will become more valuable, will become more precious – but that is not the transformation. The transformation comes not by improvement but by dropping the personality utterly.

The lie cannot become the truth. There is no way to improve upon the lie so that it becomes the truth. It will remain the lie. It will look more and more like the truth but it will remain the lie. And the more it looks like the truth, the more you will be engrossed in it, rooted in it. The lie can look so much like the truth that you can even become oblivious of the fact that it is a lie.

The lie tells you: Search for the truth. Improve your character, your personality. Search for the truth, become this, become that. The lie goes on giving you new programs: Do this, and then everything will be good and you will be happy for ever. Do this, do that. This has failed? Don’t be worried, I have other plans for you. The lie goes on giving you plans, and you go on moving in those plans and wasting your life.

In fact the search for truth also comes out of the lie. That will be hard to understand but it has to be understood. The search for truth comes from the lie itself. It is the lie’s way to protect itself – it gives you even the search for truth, now how can you be angry with your personality? And how can you call it a lie? It propels you, it enforces you, it pushes you to search for truth.

But the search means going away. And truth is here, and the lie pushes you to go there. And truth is now, and the lie says ‘then’ and ‘there’. The lie always speaks either of the past or of the future, it never speaks of the present. And the truth is the present. This very moment! It is herenow. That’s what Hakuin means when he says:

This very place the lotus paradise,
This very body the buddha.

So the first ‘you’ is the lie, the act. The pseudo-personality that surrounds you. The public face, the phoniness. It is a fraud. The society has imposed it upon you and you have become a cooperator with it. You have to drop your cooperation with the social lie. Because only when you are utterly nude are you yourself. All clothes are social. All ideas and all identities that you think you are, are social – given by others. They have their motives to give those ideas to you. It is subtle exploitation.

The real exploitation is not economic or political, the real exploitation is psychological. That’s why all the revolutions up to now have been failures. Hitherto, no revolution has succeeded. The reason? Because they have not looked at the deepest exploitation which is psychological. They only go on changing superficial things. A capitalist society becomes communist, but it makes no difference. A democracy becomes dictatorial, a dictatorial society becomes democratic, it makes no difference. These are just superficial changes, like a whitewash, but the structure remains deep down the same.

What is the psychological exploitation? The psychological exploitation is that nobody is allowed to be himself. That nobody is accepted as himself or herself. That nobody is respected. How can you respect people if you don’t accept them as they are? If you impose things upon them and then you respect, you respect your own impositions. You don’t respect them as they are, you don’t respect their nudity. You don’t respect their naturalness, you don’t respect their spontaneity, you don’t respect their real smiles and real tears. You respect only phoniness, pretensions, actions. Their actings you respect.

This you-1 has to be utterly dropped. Freud helped much to make humanity aware of the pseudoness of personality, of the conscious mind. His revolution ii far deeper than the revolution of Marx, his revolution is far deeper than any other revolution. It goes deep, although it does not go far enough. It reaches to the second you, you-2. It is the repressed you, instinctive you, unconscious you. It is all that the society has not allowed, it is all that the society has forced inside your being and locked in there. It comes only in your dreams, it comes only in metaphors, it comes only when you are drunk, it comes only when you are no more in control. Otherwise, it remains far away from you. And it is more authentic, it is not phony.

Freud has done much to make man aware of it. And the humanistic psychologies and particularly growth groups, encounter and others, have helped tremendously to make you aware of all that is screaming inside you, all that has been repressed, crushed. And that is your vital part. That is your real life, natural life. Religions have condemned it as your animal part, they have condemned it as the source of sin. It is not the source of sin; it is the source of life. And it is not lower than the conscious. It is deeper than the conscious, certainly, but not lower than the conscious.

And nothing is wrong if it is animal. Animals are beautiful, so are trees. They still live naked in their utter simplicity. They have not yet been destroyed by the priests and the politicians, they are yet part of God. Only man has gone astray. Man is the only abnormal animal on the earth – otherwise all animals are simply normal. Hence the joy, the beauty, the health. Hence the vitality. Have you not seen it? When a bird is on the wing have you not felt jealous? Have you not seen it in a deer running fast into the forest? Have you not felt jealous of the vitality, of the sheer joy of energy?

Children: have you not felt jealous? Maybe because you feel so jealous, that’s why you go on condemning childishness. You go on condemning. Montague is right when he says that instead of telling people ‘Don’t be childish’ we should start telling people ‘Don’t be adultish’. He is right, I agree. A child is beautiful, the adult is what ugliness is. He is no more a flow; he is blocked in many ways. He is frozen, he is dull and dead. He has lost zest, he has lost enthusiasm, he is simply dragging. He is bored, he has no sense of mystery. He never feels surprised, he has forgotten the language of wonder. Mystery has disappeared for him. He has explanations, mystery is no more there. Hence he has lost poetry and the dance and all that is valuable and all that gives meaning and significance to life, all that gives flavor to life.

This second ‘you’ is far more valuable than the first. That is where I am against all the religions, that is where I am against all the priests, because they cling to the first, the superficial most. Go to the second. But the second is not the end – that is where Freud falls short. And that is where humanistic psychology also falls short – goes a little deeper than Freud but still does not go deep enough to find the third.

There is a third ‘you’, you-3. The real you, the original face, which is beyond you-1 and you-2, both. The transcendental. The Buddhahood. It is undivided pure consciousness. The first you is social, the second you is natural, the third you is divine. Or, if you want to use Hakuin’s terms, the first you is the physical body, the second you is the bliss body, and the third you is the essential body. These are the three bodies of Buddha.

And remember, I am not saying that the first is not at all useful. If the third exists then the first can be used beautifully. If the third exists, the second can be used beautifully. But only if the third exists. If the center functions well then the periphery too is okay, then the circumference too is okay. But without the center, only the circumference, is a kind of death.

That’s what has happened to man. That’s why in the West so many thinkers think that life is meaningless. It is not. It is only because you have lost touch with your source from where meaning arises.

It is as if a tree has lost its contact with its own roots. Now no flowers come. Now the foliage starts disappearing, the leaves fall and no new leaves arrive. And the juice stops flowing, the sap no more exists. The tree becomes dead, the tree is dying.

And the tree may start philosophizing, the tree may become existentialist, a Sartre or somebody else, and the tree may start saying that there are no flowers in life. That life has no flowers, that there is no fragrance, that there are no more any birds. And the tree may even start saying that it has been always so, and the ancients were only befooling themselves that there are flowers – they were imagining. ‘It has always been so, the spring has never come, people have only been fantasizing. These Buddhas and these Jinas, they have been simply imagining, fantasizing, that flowers bloom and there is great joy and birds come and sunlight. There is nothing. All is darkness, all is accidental, and there is no meaning.’ The tree can say it.

And the real thing is not that there is no meaning, not that there are no more flowers, not that flowers don’t exist, not that fragrance is fantasy, but simply that the tree has lost contact with its own roots.

Unless you are rooted in your Buddhahood you will not bloom. You will not sing, you will not know what celebration is. And how can you know God if you don’t know celebration? If you have forgotten how to dance how can you pray? If you have forgotten how to sing and how to love then God is dead. Not that God is dead. God is dead in you, only in you. Your tree is dry, the sap has disappeared. You will have to find roots again. Where to find these roots? Roots have to be found here and now. That is the whole message of Hakuin’s song of meditation. Before we enter into the song, a few things.

A man can seem to be the sum total of his days, of all that he does from the beginning to the end. But this is not the true man. What you do is just on the periphery. What you feel goes a little deeper. What you are is really at the roots. A man is not the sum total of his acts. A politician IS the sum total of his acts, because he lives only on the circumference. That’s why it is easy to write history about the politicians. It is difficult to write history about Buddhas, because they live at such depth where we cannot reach them. They live in such eternity that time takes no record of them. They exist in such a transcendental way that they leave no traces on the earth. They are like birds in the sky: they fly but no footprints are left.

Politicians leave footprints. They live in the mud, in the dirt, they drag themselves in the mundane reality. They leave many footprints; they leave much bloodshed behind them. A Buddha exists as if he has never existed. He exists so absently, he exists like a space, empty space.

Remember, a man is not a sum total of his actions. And if he is, he is not yet a man; he is just a fiction, he is living in illusion. You are not what you do. So don’t be too much concerned with your doing, start going deeper into being. That’s why all meditations are basically a way to sit silently – so silently that all action stops. On the physical plane, on the mental plane, action stops, thought stops. Because thought is also action on the mental plane – you are doing something. When all doing disappears and you are simply there, just there, a presence, then the meditation has happened.

Sitting silently, doing nothing, the spring comes and the grass grows by itself.

That is the meaning of the word ‘zazen’. ‘Za’ means sitting doing nothing. And ‘zen’ means: in that sitting when you are not doing anything you fall upon yourself, you encounter yourself, you see yourself. That is zen, dhyana, meditation. The word ‘zazen’ is beautiful. ’Sitting and looking into yourself’ – that is the meaning of it.

Man is more than the sum total of his acts, his thoughts, his feelings. Behind the acts, thoughts and feelings there is another man – that which is, that which essentially IS. But many seldom if ever show themselves in their essential being. Very few ever reach to that point of their essential being-hood, to their very ground of being. Those who reach, only they know that life is a benediction. A sheer joy, eternal celebration.

But if you remain on the surface, you know only misery, nothing else. Agony, nothing else. Let me say it in this way: You-1 knows only misery and agony. You-3 knows ecstasy of being and joy of being. And You-2 neither knows ecstasy nor knows agony. It knows pleasure/pain, it is just in the middle. Ecstasy is exceeding joy without any bounds to it, infinite joy. Agony is infinite misery, no bounds to it. Just between the two exists the animal and the child. It knows play, it knows pleasure/pain. It knows neither agony nor ecstasy. It does not know infinity.

If the child moves towards the first, which society forces him to do, he will know agony. If he finds somebody who can help to move him towards the third, he will know ecstasy. To find a master is nothing but to find a man who has known his essential being, so that he can help you to go towards your own essential being.

A master is not to be followed, a master is not to be imitated, a master is only to be understood. In that very understanding is the revolution.

A man’s true life is the way in which he puts off the lie imposed by others on him. Stripped, naked, natural, he is what he is. This is a matter of being, and not of becoming. The lie cannot become the truth, the personality cannot become your soul. There is no way to make the non-essential the essential. The non-essential remains non-essential and the essential remains essential, they are not convertible. And striving towards truth is nothing but creating more confusion. The truth has not to be achieved. It cannot be achieved, it is already the case. Only the lie has to be dropped.

All aims and ends and ideals and goals and ideologies, religions and systems of improvement and betterment, are lies. Beware of them. Recognize the fact that as you are, you are a lie. Manipulated, cultivated, by others. Striving after truth is a distraction and a postponement. It is the lie’s way to hide. See the lie, look deep into the lie of your personality. Because to see the lie is to cease to lie. No longer to lie is to seek no more for any truth – there is no need. The moment the lie disappears, truth is there in all its beauty and radiance. In the seeing of the lie it disappears and what is left is the truth.

To see the lie of striving after truth is to fall into an eternal silence. A stillness comes when you see the lie of your personality. There is nothing more to do. Hence the stillness – what can you do?

Just the other night, a sannyasin was saying ‘What can I do? Whatsoever I do, I fail. What can I do?’ There is nothing really to be done. Doing is not going to help, doing will be again the same rut. Only being is going to transform you, not doing. So when one fails again and again and again, only then the insight arises that ‘Doing is never going to lead me anywhere.’ The day that sword has hit you – that ‘Doing is not going to lead me anywhere’ – what will you do? Nothing is left to do.

In your utter helplessness, the surrender. And silence and stillness. This is the silence that transforms – not the silence that somehow you impose upon yourself by repeating a mantra or doing TM; that is not the real silence, that is a created silence. Any silence that you manage to create will belong to the personality. It will not be of much use, it will not go deeper than that – how can your doing go deeper than you? When you have utterly failed, when you have seen your ultimate failure and you have seen that there is no possibility and no hope for you to succeed, what will you do in that silence? You will just be there. All has stopped. The mind no more spins any thoughts.

And in that very moment the door opens. And that silence is being, that silence is Buddha.

This stillness is not the opposite of action, it is not brought about by will or by withdrawal from the world. One cannot withdraw from the world; one is the world. The want to escape keeps us imprisoned – because the wish to be without desire is still desire, and the will to be still is disturbance. You cannot will your silence, will is the base of all disturbance. Will has to disappear. You can only see into the futility of it. Doing, willing, improving, bettering yourself, achieving, reaching – all these words are just projections of the lie.

When the lie has been seen in its totality . . . the illumination, the enlightenment.

Now Hakuin’s sutras.

The pure land paradise is not far.

Zen people call the state of no-mind ‘the pure land paradise’. So please don’t interpret it in Christian ways. Paradise, to a Christian, is somewhere there in the sky. For a Buddhist, particularly for a man like Hakuin, it is the state of no-mind.

The pure land paradise is not far.

Stop thinking and you are there. And in fact that is the Biblical meaning of the parable of Adam’s expulsion. He has not been expelled, there is nobody to expel him. He has only eaten the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge – he has become a mind. The more knowledge you accumulate, the more of a mind you become. Adam has become knowledgeable, he has become a mind, and that is the expulsion from the paradise. If he can drop his mind he will suddenly find himself again in the paradise, and he will also find that he has been always there. Even when he was thinking he had lost it, it was not lost. It was only forgotten. He became too much obsessed with knowledge, that’s why it was forgotten.

The day the child starts becoming knowledgeable he loses paradise. Each Adam loses it again and again. And don’t think that it happened once in history, and we are suffering for that ancient Adam. No. It has happened to our life – to each life, to each child. For a few months the child lives in the Garden of Eden. He knows nothing. Without knowing, he is a no-mind – he simply exists moment to moment, he has no worries. When he feels hungry, he cries, when he feels satisfied, he falls asleep. When he is happy, he smiles, when he is angry he screams. But he has no ideas about anything. He neither praises a smile nor condemns screaming. He neither feels shy about crying and weeping nor feels very good that he has been a good boy today. He knows nothing about all this nonsense. He knows nothing good, nothing bad, he makes no distinctions. He lives utterly one with reality. And whatsoever happens, happens; there is no rejection.

But by and by he will become knowledgeable, he will start learning things. The day he starts learning things he is trapped by the snake. Now he has started eating the fruit of the tree, sooner or later the paradise will disappear. Beaches will be there but no more beautiful. Butterflies will be still floating in the wind but for the child they don’t exist anymore. What exists is arithmetic, geography, history. Flowers still bloom but they don’t bloom for the child any more, he is too much into his homework. Once in a while still he hears the bird singing on the window, but only once in a while. And the whole society tries to drag him away from that.

The teacher will say ‘Look here at the blackboard! What are you doing there? Concentrate on me!’ The child was concentrating. The birdcall was so beautiful outside the window, the child was in concentration, utter concentration. This teacher has distracted him; now he has to look at the blackboard. And there is nothing to look at it, just a blackboard. But by and by we will manage to distract the child.

The expulsion is not by God but by the society. The society drags each Adam and Eve out of the Garden of Eden. And once you have become too much of the head it is very difficult to enter back into that purity, that pure land paradise. Zen masters say, just like Jesus said: Unless you are like small children you will not enter into the kingdom of God.

A Christian missionary went to a Zen master and started reading the Sermon on the Mount. The Zen master listened and he said ‘Whosoever has said it must be very close to Buddhahood.’ The Zen master had never heard about Christ, he had never read the Bible, but he said ‘Whosoever has said it must be very close to Buddhahood.’ And when the missionary read ‘Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of God’ the Zen master said ‘Now stop. Now there is no more to read. Now there is no need to read any more. Whosoever has said it is a Buddha.’

‘Poor in spirit’ means empty of mind. ‘Poor in spirit’ means empty – all thoughts have disappeared. Then you are again back in paradise.

The pure land paradise is not far.

It is just there! Beating in your heart. Your each breath goes and touches the pure land paradise, each moment. You live from it. Every night when you fall asleep and dreams disappear, you are in it again. That’s why in the morning you feel so fresh, again young, rejuvenated. You have been on a short trip to the pure land paradise.

When in reverence this truth is heard even once,
He who praises it and gladly embraces it
Has merit without end.

Hakuin says ‘When in reverence this truth is heard even once.’ The question is not of hearing the truth many times. If you hear even once, if you have understood it even for a single moment in deep trust and reverence, it is yours forever. Doubt distracts. Doubt does not allow you to understand, doubt does not allow you to see it. Listen in reverence, in love. Be en rapport.

That is the way to be with a master – be en rapport, be bridged. But small things, very small things, distract you. Very small things which mean nothing – but you are distracted by those small things, and doubt arises. And doubt becomes a cloud and you become blind.

. . . In reverence this truth is heard even once,

It is enough.

How much more he who turns within . . .

Even hearing the truth is a deliverance. ‘How much more he who turns within’ – who not only hears it but looks within and sees it . . .

And confirms directly his own nature,
That his own nature is no-nature . . .

When you look deep into yourself you will not find anything there obstructing your vision. It is pure space. Your nature is no-nature. It is emptiness, sunyata.

Such has transcended vain words.

Only when you look into your nature . . . and find nothing. You only find an empty infinity there. Words will not have any meaning any more, you have transcended words. You have looked into your nature and now you know no word can explain it, no word can define it, no word can even indicate it. All scriptures become meaningless.

The gate opens, and cause and effect are one . . .

When you look inside yourself and there is no content, and the no-nature has been felt and you have seen your inner sky . . .

The gate opens, and cause and effect are one.

And the source and the goal are one. Now you are not to go anywhere, you have come to your source. And to be at the source is to be at the goal. To be at the beginning is to be at the end.

Straight runs the way – not two, not three.
Taking as form the form of no-form,
Going or returning, he is ever at home.

And once you have seen the form of no-form, once you have seen the thought of no-thought, once you have seen the nature of no-nature, you are a totally new being. What happens . . .

Going or returning, he is ever at home.

Then wherever you are, you are at home. In the prison you are at home, in the temple you are at home, in the shop you are at home, in the Himalayas you are at home, in the marketplace you are at home. You are simply at home. once you have seen your center, your essential being, your Buddhahood, has been glimpsed. Then wherever you are you are at home, because all is your home. Then there is no need to leave the world.

Zen people are not against the world. They say: To be against the world is still to be attached to the world. To go to the opposite extreme is not transformation. When you no more choose between two extremes, you settle in the middle. And the middle is the way.

Straight runs the way – not two, not three.

It is a simple way – one.

Going or returning, he is ever at home.
Taking as thought the thought of no-thought,
Singing and dancing, all is the voice of truth.

Then whatsoever you do, you express truth. Whatsoever. Eating, you express truth. Walking, you express truth. When a Zen master hits a disciple he is expressing truth. When Kabir sings he is expressing truth, when Meera dances she is expressing truth. Jesus expresses truth dying on the cross, and Krishna expresses truth singing on his flute. Whatsoever you do, there is no way to avoid expressing truth. You are truth. The lie has been dropped.

Singing and dancing, all is the voice of truth.
Wide is the heaven of boundless samadhi,
Radiant the full moon of fourfold wisdom.
What remains to be sought?
Nirvana is clear before him,
This very place the lotus paradise,
This very body the buddha.

Remember the word ‘This’.

This very place the lotus paradise

And once you have known your source, wherever you are, you are in the lotus paradise.

This very place the lotus paradise,
And this very body the buddha.

And whatsoever you do – whatsoever, without any conditions – is the expression of truth.

I have heard a beautiful story about Roshi Taji, a great Zen master.

As Roshi Taji approached death, his senior disciples assembled at his bedside. One of them, remembering the roshi was fond of a certain kind of cake, had spent half a day searching the pastry shops of Tokyo for this confection which he now presented to Roshi Taji. With a wan smile the dying roshi accepted a piece of the cake and slowly began munching it. As the roshi grew weaker, his disciples leaned close and inquired whether he had any final words for them.

‘Yes’ the roshi replied.

The disciples leaned forward eagerly. ‘Please tell us!’

‘My, but this cake is delicious!’ And with that he died.

Meditate over it. What a man! What manner of man! A Buddha. Each act and each word and each gesture becomes the expression of truth. In that moment only that was true, the taste of the cake. In that moment anything else would have been false, untrue. If he had talked about God, that would not have been true. If he had talked about nirvana, that would not have been true. In that moment the taste on his tongue was still alive. In that moment that was his authentic gesture.

He said ‘My, but this cake is delicious.’ This cake.

This very place the lotus paradise,
This very body the buddha.

Zen people talk about four wisdoms.

Wide is the heaven of boundless samadhi,
Radiant the full moon of the fourfold wisdom.

The first wisdom is called ‘the wisdom of the mirror’. When there is no thought you become a mirror. This is the first wisdom, becoming like a mirror. The second wisdom is called ‘the wisdom of sameness’. When you become a mirror without any thought, all distinctions in the world disappear. Then it is all one. Then the rose and the bird and the earth and the sky and the sea and the sand and the sun are all one, it is one energy.

When you are a mirror – the first wisdom – the second wisdom arises out of the first: the wisdom of sameness. Duality disappears. And out of the second arises the third wisdom, the wisdom of spiritual vision. When you have seen that all over the world it is one energy, then only can you see inside yourself that you are also that energy. Then the seer and the seen become one, the observer and the observed become one. That is the third wisdom, the wisdom of spiritual vision. Buddha has a special word for it, he calls it dhamma chakkhu – the eye for truth, or the truth-eye. The spiritual vision opens – what yogis call ‘the third eye’. What Christ also calls ‘the one eye’, when two eyes become one. Dhamma chakkhu opens, the wisdom of spiritual vision is attained.

And out of the third arises the fourth, the wisdom of perfection. When you have seen that all is the same, and when you have looked within and seen that without and within are also the same, you have become perfect. In fact, to say that you have become perfect is not true, you have always been perfect. Now it is revealed to you – it is only a revelation. In that moment one knows . . .

This very place the lotus paradise,
This very body the buddha.

-Osho

From This Very Body the Buddha, Discourse #6

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.

Many of Osho’s books are available in the U.S. online from Amazon.com and Viha Osho Book Distributors. In India they are available from Amazon.in and Oshoworld.com.

All Beings are from the Very Beginning Buddhas – Osho

I was thinking what should I give to you today? Because this is my birthday, I was incarnated into this body on this day. This is the day I saw for the first time the green of the trees and the blue of the skies. This was the day I for the first time opened my eyes and saw God all around. Of course the word ‘God’ didn’t exist at that moment, but what I saw was God. I was thinking what should I give to you today? Then I remembered a saying of Buddha: sabba danam dhamma danana jnati – the gift of truth excels all other gifts. And my truth is love.

The word ‘truth’ looks to me a little too dry and desert-like. I am not in much tune with the word ‘truth’ – it looks too logical, it looks too ’heady’. It gives you the feeling of philosophy, not of religion. It gives you the idea as if you have concluded – that you have come to a conclusion, that there has been a syllogism behind it, argumentation and logic and reasoning. No, truth’ is not my word, love’ is my word. Love is of the heart. Truth is partial, only your head is involved. In love you are involved as a totality – your body, your mind, your soul, all are involved.

Love makes you a unity – and not a union, remember, but a unity. Because in a union those who join together remain separate. In a unity they dissolve, they become one, they melt into each other. And that moment I call the moment of truth, when love has given you unity. First, love gives you unity in your innermost core. Then you are no more a body, no more a mind, no more a soul. You are simply one – unnamed, undefined, unclassified. No more determinate, definable, no more comprehensible. A mystery, a joy, a surprise, a jubilation, a great celebration.

First, love gives you an inner unity. And when the inner unity has happened the second happens on its own – you are not to do anything for it. Then you start falling in unity with the whole beyond you. Then the drop disappears in the ocean and the ocean disappears into the drop. That moment, that moment of orgasm between you and the whole, is where you become a Buddha. That moment is the moment Buddhahood is imparted to you. Or, better, revealed to you – you have always been that, unaware.

My word is love. So I say: My beloved ones, I love you. and I would like you to fill the whole world with love. Let that be our religion. Not Christianity, not Hinduism, not Islam, not Jainism, not Buddhism, but love. Love without any adjective to it. Not Christian love – because how can love be Christian? It is so stupid. How can love be Hindu? It is ridiculous. Love is simply love. In love you can be a Christ. in love you can be a Buddha – but there is no Buddhist love and there is no Christian love.

In love you disappear, your mind disappears. In love you come to an utter relaxation. That’s my teaching to you, I teach love. And there is nothing higher than love.

Then I thought I should give you something beautiful on this day. And I remembered Hakuin’s Song of Meditation. It is a very small song, but a great gift. Hakuin is one of the greatest Zen masters. His song contains all: all the Bibles and all the Korans and all the Vedas. A small song of few lines, but it is like a seed – very small, but if you allow passage to it to your heart, it can become a great tree. It can become a Bodhi tree – it will have great foliage and much shade and thousands of people can sit and rest underneath it. It will have big branches and many birds can come and have their nests on it.

See: I have become a tree. You are the people who have come to make their nests on my tree. You can also become this. Everybody should become this – because unless you become this you will go on missing your fulfillment. Unless you become a great tree which has come to its foliage, flowers and fruits – which is fulfilled – you will remain in discontent. Anguish will go on gnawing in your heart, misery will linger around you. Bliss will be only a word, signifying nothing. God will be just gibberish.

When you have fulfillment then there is grace and then there is God. In your fulfillment you come to realize the benediction of existence.

This is a song of meditation. Hakuin has called it ‘song’ – yes, it is a song. If meditation is without a song it is do and dead – it does not beat it does not breathe. It is a song and a dance: sing it and dance it. Just don’t think upon it – then you will miss the messages you will miss its content. You will find this song and its meaning only when you are singing and dancing. When the music of life has overtaken you, has possessed you.

Hakuin’s song is so small and yet so vast, it is unbelievable. How can a man condense so much truth and so much love and so much insight into so few words? But Hakuin was a man of few words, a man of silence. For years he would not speak at all, and then he would speak a word or two.

Once the Emperor of Japan invited him to deliver a sermon in the palace. And the queen and the king and the prime minister and the ministers and the high officials and the generals, they all had gathered with great respect to listen. Hakuin came, stood there for a single moment, looked around, and left the hall. The king was puzzled. He asked his prime minister, ‘What is the Matter with this man? We had come to listen.’ The old prime minister said, ‘This is the greatest sermon that I have ever heard. He has said it! You had asked him to come and teach you about silence. He has taught it! He stood there in silence, he was silence. What more do you ask? What more do you demand? He was pure silence, standing there for those few seconds. He was utter silence. He was silence, throbbing, pulsating. But you were looking to hear some words.’

But about silence nothing can be said. And all that is said about silence will be wrong. How can you say anything about silence? To say something will be falsifying it. That’s why Lao Tzu says Nothing can be said about Tao – and if something is said, in the very saying of it, it has become untrue. Tao is silent. But that silence is not the silence of a cemetery. It is the silence of a garden where trees are alive breathing and yet there is utter silence. It is not a dead silence; it is an alive silence. Hence, he has called it ’The Song of Meditation’.

Buddha says: My approach to reality is not of belief but of seeing. His religion has been qualified as ‘Ihi passika: Come and see.’ Not as ‘Come and believe.’ Buddha says ‘Come and see: Ihi passika.’ It is here, present – you just come and see. He does not require you to believe. He is the only great teacher in the world who dropped belief – and with dropping belief he transformed religion from a very low childish stature to a very mature thing. With Buddha religion became young. Otherwise it was childish. It was a kind of belief – belief is superstition, belief is out of fear. And belief is blind. Buddha has given eyes to religion. He says: See, and there is no need to believe. And when you have seen then it will not be a belief, it will be knowing.

In this song of Hakuin you will see the way of seeing – how to open the eyes. Because truth is always there, has been always there. It is not that the truth has to be produced. Buddha says: Yatha bhutam – It is! It is already there, it is confronting you! It is in the east, it is in the west, it is in the north, it is in the south. It surrounds you – it is without and it is within. But you will have to see it: Ihi passika. Your eyes are closed, you have forgotten how to open them.

Meditation is nothing but the art of opening your eyes. The art of cleansing your eyes. the art of dropping the dust that has gathered on the mirror of your consciousness. It is natural, dust gathers. Man has been traveling and traveling for thousands of lives – dust gathers. We are all travelers, much dust has gathered – so much so that the mirror has completely disappeared. There is only dust upon dust, layers and layers of dust, and you cannot see the mirror. But the mirror is still there – it cannot be lost, because it is your very nature. If it can be lost then it will not be your nature. It is not that you have a mirror: you ARE the mirror. The traveler is the mirror – he cannot lose it, he can only forget it. At the most, forgetfulness.

You have not lost your Buddhahood. Buddha hood means the mirror clean of dust. The mirror again fresh, again reflecting, again functioning – that’s what Buddhahood is. Buddha hood means a consciousness which has become awakened. The sleep is no more and the dreams are no more and the desires have disappeared. The dust gathers, it is natural. But you cling to the dust – your desire functions like a glue.

And what is your desire? That has to be understood. If you have understood your desire you have understood all. Because in the understanding of desire, desire ceases. And when desire ceases, suddenly you have a totally new feel of your being; you are no more the old. What is the desire? What are you searching? What are you seeking?

Happiness. Bliss. Joy. That’s what you are seeking. And you have been seeking for millennia, and you have not found it yet. It is time, the right time, to think again, to meditate again. You have been seeking so hard, you have been trying so hard – perhaps you are missing just because you are trying? Maybe it is trying that keeps you away from happiness? Let us think over it, brood over it. Give a little pause to your search, recapitulate.

You have been searching for many lives. You don’t remember other lives, no need – but in this life you have been searching, that will do. And you have not found it. And nobody has ever found it by searching. Something is wrong in the very search. In the search naturally you forget yourself; you start looking everywhere, everywhere else. You look to the north and to the east and to the west and to the south, and in the sky and underneath the seas, and you go on searching everywhere. And the search becomes more and more desperate, because the more and more you search and you don’t find, great anxiety arises – ’Am I going to make it this time, or am I again going to miss it?’

More and more desperation, more and more misery, more and more madness. You go nuts. And the happiness remains as far away as ever – in fact it recedes farther away from you. The more you search, the less is the possibility to get it. Because it is inside you.

Happiness is the function of your consciousness when it is awake. Unhappiness is the function of your consciousness when it is asleep. Unconsciousness is your mirror burdened with great dust and luggage and past. Happiness is when the burden has been dropped and the mirror has been found again. And again your mirror can reflect the trees and the sun and the sand and the sea and the stars. When you have again become innocent, when you again have again become innocent, when you again have the eyes of a child – in that clarity you are happy.

I was reading a few lines of Michael Adam. They are beautiful.

‘Perhaps trying even makes for unhappiness. Perhaps all the din of my desiring has kept the strange bird from my shoulder. I have tried so long and so loud after happiness. I have looked so far and wide. I have always imagined that happiness was an island in the river. Perhaps it is the river. I have thought happiness to be the name of an inn at the end of the road. Perhaps it is the road. I have believed that happiness was always tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow. Perhaps it is here. Perhaps it is now. I have looked everywhere else.

‘So: here and now.’

But here and now is clearly unhappiness. Perhaps then no such thing as happiness. Perhaps happiness exists not, it is just a dream created by an unhappy mind. Certainly it cannot be as I unhappily imagine it. Here and now there is not happiness. So happiness is not. I need not therefore waste myself on what is not. I can forget about happiness then; I can cease to care and instead concern myself with something that I do know, can feel and fully experience. Happiness is an idle dream: now it is morning. I can awaken and stay with unhappiness, with what is real under the sun this moment. And now I see how much of my unhappiness came from trying to be happy; even I can see that trying is unhappiness. Happiness does not try . . .

‘At last, I am here and now. At last, I am what I am. I am unpretending, at ease. I am unhappy – so what? . . . But is this what I ran from? Is this really unhappiness? . . . ’

Think over it, meditate over it.

‘And when I cease to try to be happy or anything else, when I do not seek anymore, when I do not care to go anywhere, get anything, then it seems I am already arrived in a strange place: I am here and now. When I see that I can do nothing, that all my doing is the same dream, in the moment that I see this, my mind the old dreamer and wanderer is for the moment still and present.’

Naturally. If you are not searching, not seeking, not desiring, not dreaming, for a moment the mind falls into a silence. It is still. There is nothing to hanker about, nothing to make a fuss about, nothing to expect and nothing to be frustrated about. For a moment the mind stops its constant chasing. In that moment of stillness you are in a strange place, you are in a strange space, unknown, never known before. A new door has opened. For the moment the mind is still and present.

‘For the moment, here and now, the real world shows, and see: here and now is already and always all that I had sought and striven after elsewhere and apart. More than that: I have hunted after shadows; the reality is here in this sunlit place, in this bird-call now. It was my seeking aster reality that took me from it; desire deafened me. The bird was singing here all the while. . . .

‘If I am still and careless to find happiness, then happiness it seems is able to find me. It is, if I am truly still, as still as death – if I am thoroughly dead, here and now.’

Happiness suddenly jumps upon you. When desire disappears, happiness appears. When the striving is no more, for the first time you see who you are. That knowing is what Buddha means: Come and see – Ihi passika. From where is he calling you: ‘Come and see’? He is calling you from your desires. You have gone far away from your home, you have lost your home base. You are not where you appear to be. Your dream has taken you to faraway worlds – imaginary; illusory, your own creation.

Zen people have a special word for meditation, they call it ‘fu-sho’. Fu-sho means ‘unproduced’. You cannot produce it, you cannot do anything to bring it. You have to be passive, in a state of non-doing – then it comes. Then it comes suddenly, from nowhere, from the blue. And in that coming, in that shower of silence and stillness, is the transformation. It is nothing special, Zen people say. How can it be special? It is everybody’s nature, so how can it be special? It is utterly ordinary, everybody has it. You may know, you may not know – that is a different thing – but you have it. Not for a single moment have you missed it. Not for a single moment has it been taken away from you. It has been there, lying and lying and waiting for you to come back home.

Another word Zen people use for meditation is ‘wu-shi’. It means ’nothing special’ or ‘no fuss’.

Now this song of Hakuin.

All beings are from the very beginning Buddhas.

This one sentence is enough. It is the beginning and the middle and the end. It is all. The alpha and the omega.

All beings are from the very beginning Buddhas.

You are Buddhas. Never for a single moment have you been otherwise. You cannot. You cannot really go away from your Buddhahood, you can only dream. You can only dream that you have gone away, but while dreaming you will still remain here now. This is impossible, to lose your Buddhahood, because God is involved in everything and every being. And when Hakuin says, ‘All beings are from the very beginning Buddhas,’ don’t think that he is talking only of human beings. Animals are included, so are included the birds and the trees and the rocks. All that is, is included.

The English word ‘being’ comes from a Sanskrit root ‘bhu’. Bhu means ‘that which grows’. All that grows is God. The trees grow, the birds grow, the rocks grow. All that grows is God. And everything grows in its own pace. Remember, the root of ‘being’, the word ‘being’, is BHU. It simply means that which breathes, that which grows, that which has life – howsoever rudimentary, howsoever primitive. All is included.

All beings are from the very beginning Buddhas.

And what is the meaning of a Buddha? ‘Buddha’ means a consciousness that has come back to itself – is no more wandering in dreams, is no more thinking of the future, is no more thinking of the past. A consciousness that is not possessed by memories or possessed by imagination. A consciousness that has got rid of the past and rid of the future, a consciousness that has only present. A consciousness that lives in the moment, utterly here now. Alert, awake, radiant.

All beings are Buddhas. Zen people call this single sentence ‘The Lion’s Roar’. It is. In a single stroke Hakuin has delivered you, has saved you from yourself. There is no more salvation needed. A single statement is enough to release you from all bondage. You are a Buddha. But remember you are not a Buddha in any special sense. Everybody is – your dog and your cow and your buffalo and your donkey, everybody is! So don’t take it in an egoistic sense, that ‘I am a Buddha’. Don’t make it ambitious, don’t go on an ambition trip. ALL is Buddha. Life is Buddha, being is Buddhahood, existence is Buddhahood.

Just think of it. One of the greatest statements ever made:

All beings are from the very beginning Buddhas.

Hakuin has finished in one sentence. The remaining song will be a repetition, really. The remaining song will be for those who cannot understand the first statement. It is said, when Hakuin was writing this song and he wrote his first sentence – ‘All beings are from the very beginning Buddhas’ – one of his disciples was sitting there and he said, ‘Stop now. Now there is no more to say.’ He left the room, the disciple left the room. He said, ‘Now there is no point. You have finished in the first sentence – this should be the last sentence!’

But still the song is beautiful. It will help you from different directions to come to the same truth. It will help you to see the point from different vantage points, from different windows. You will see the same Buddha sitting, from every window of the temple. But it is good, because from some window there may be more light falling on the Buddha, from some window the green of the trees may be reflected in the Buddha’s face, from some other window a star may be looking at the Buddha, from some other window something else – a bird may be sitting and singing a song.

All beings are from the very beginning Buddhas.

The universe is made of the stuff called ‘God’. So God is not in the end. God is in the beginning, in the middle, and the end. Only God is. But let me remind you, when I use the word ‘God’ I mean godliness.

It is like water and ice:
Apart from water, no ice,
Outside living beings, no buddhas.

Hakuin says: It is like water and ice. There is no difference between water and ice, and yet a sort of difference. If you have gone to the market to purchase ice, you will not purchase water. You will purchase ice – you will insist. If somebody says, ‘Take this water,’ you will say, ‘I have come for the ice.’ There is a sort of difference. But not much, not really – only on the surface. The ice will melt and will become water, and the water can become frozen and can be turned into ice. They are two phases of one phenomenon.

You are like ice and Buddha is like water. You are frozen, he has melted. And let me repeat: There is no other alchemy then love to help you melt. Love melts, because love is warmth. People melt only in love. When they are not in love they become cold, and in the cold they freeze. And you must have watched it, even in your small ways. When you are loving you are flowing. When you are flowing you are glowing. When you are loving you expand. When you are not loving you shrink. When you are loving you have warmth around you. When you are not loving you are surrounded by a cold wind – you are freezing, and anybody who comes close to you will freeze.

There are people, if they look at you with their cold eyes you will feel a shivering. And there are people, when they look at you with their warmth, with their love, you suddenly feel this is your home. There are eyes which give you the feeling of being at home, and there are eyes which stare at you and make you aware that you are a stranger here.

Apart from water, no ice,
Outside living beings, no buddhas.

So Buddha hood is nothing but a state of merger. Frozen Ness is gone. Your definition has disappeared. You are no more limited, you are no more confined. At the deepest core, you are no more. Because if you are then there will be some kind of frozenness in you. If you are then you cannot be flowing – something will be hindering and something will be stuck and something will be obstructing. When you are not at all . . . That’s why when two lovers are in deep embrace there are not two persons. There is only one energy, revolving. When two lovers are really in deep embrace there comes a moment, the woman forgets whether she is woman or man and the man forgets whether he is man or woman. If that moment has not come then you have not loved.

In deep love you disappear. Still something is there, a kind of presence – but nobody is present. There is no center as frozen ice, there is no self. That’s why Buddha has very much insisted that your self is the root cause which is hindering you from being a Buddha. The feeling that ‘I am’ makes you ice, icy and cold. If this feeling ‘I am’ disappears, there is no problem. Ice will melt.

It is like water and ice:
Apart from water, no ice,
Outside living beings, no buddhas.

The Buddhist doctrine talks about Buddha’s three bodies. They have to be understood. The first body is called the body of truth, the universal body, the divine body. You can call it God. The second body is called the bliss body – the bridge between the first and the third. You can call it the soul. And the third body is the physical body.

You know only your physical body. You have not known your second body, the bliss body. And unless you know the second body you will not be able to know the third, the deepest – your universal body, your cosmic body, your Buddha body.

This is the Buddhist trinity – the father, the son and the holy ghost. Or, this is the Buddhist trimurti – the three faces of God. Buddha says everybody has these three bodies. The first, the physical, is very frozen. The second is in a state of liquidity. And the third is vaporous. First the ice has to melt into water and then the water has to evaporate. Have you watched? The ice has definition, boundaries; the water has no definition, no boundaries. You pour the water into any jug, into any pot, it takes the shape of the pot. It is non-resistant, it is non-aggressive, it does not fight. It is liquid, it adjusts.

The man of compassion and love is like water, he adjusts. He has no resistance, he does not enforce his form on anybody. He accommodates, he is accommodative, he is spacious.

And then the third, when the water has evaporated and has disappeared and become invisible. Now you cannot even pour it into a pot. It has become part of the sky, it has moved into the eternal, into the infinite.

These are the three states of water, and these are the three states of consciousness too. You have become too gross because you have become too much identified with your first body. As if a man has be fooled himself in believing that the walls of his house are his house. The walls of the house are not the house, you have to go a little in. You have to find the innermost core of your being – and that innermost core is invisible. That innermost core is almost like emptiness.

The first body is essence, the second body is form, the third body is action. People who live only in the physical body live only in doings – what to do, what not to do. Their whole life is just swerving, swaying, between this and that. Their life consists of doing; they don’t know anything else.

The second body is of form. A man starts seeing glimpses of non-action. That’s what happens in meditation – when you are sitting silently doing nothing, great joy arises. From nowhere, for no cause. You don’t know from where it is coming but great joy arises, as if out of nothing. Miraculously, magically. This is the second, the form. The joy takes form.

And then there is the third. If you go on following and go on moving inwards, one day you reach to the essence. That, Buddha calls the body of truth. There, no action and no no-action. All has disappeared, the whole duality has disappeared, you have come to the very essence of existence. That essence is liberating. That essence is nirvana. And you are not to go anywhere to find it, you are carrying it all along.

All beings are from the very beginning buddhas.
It is like water and ice:
Apart from water, no ice,
Outside living beings, no buddhas.
Not knowing it is near, they seek it afar. What a pity!

And if you go on seeking afar for that which is near, you will go on missing. Nobody is at fault. Before you go into the four comers of the world to search for it, first go into yourself. If you don’t find it there, then you can go anywhere you like. But people don’t go within, they start by without. And the without is vast – you can go on and on, you can search all over the earth. And people are searching. People come to me and they say, ‘We have been searching for our whole lives. And we have been to here and there, and we have been to Japan and to Ceylon and to Burma and to Thailand, and we have travelled all over the East. And we have not found it yet.’

The East is within you! It is not in Thailand, it is not in India. And you will not find it anywhere. At the most, if you accidentally come across an enlightened man, he will throw you to yourself. Not that he will give it to you. Nobody can give it to you. It is already there; there is no need to give it.

And because in the modern world communication has become easy, traveling has become easy, people are becoming even more mad. They go jumping from one city to another, from one airport to another airport. They are driving themselves crazy. And to reach home you need not enter into any aeroplane, into any train, into any car. You only need to enter into yourself. And ticket less – no ticket is needed. And nobody is there to debar you; it is your territory.

I have heard:

A party of Americans happened to arrive at Mount Vesuvius during one of its more spectacular eruptions. ‘Say!’ exclaimed one of the Yanks in an awed tone, ‘doesn’t that beat all Hell!’ ‘Sapristi!’ said the Italian guide. ’How you Americans-a travel!’

Now even Hell is in danger, afraid of the tourists.

People go on searching and seeking for something which needs no search, which can be found only when search stops. And I am not saying that you strive to stop it – then again you have started it. If you strive to stop it, then you have missed the point. You have just to see the point of it, that striving will take you away from you, that striving will create more and more tension. Seeing the fact – Ihi passika. Seeing this, striving disappears and there is suddenly a stillness. In that stillness the first glimpse will come of bliss. You will enter into your second body. And when you have entered into the second body then it will be more and more easy, very lucid, to slip into the central most core – the essential body, the body of truth.

Once you have tasted something of your inner bliss then you have the vision where to really search for, where to go now. Disappear into your innermost being and you will find it. Seek, and you will miss. Don’t seek, and find.

Not knowing it is near, they seek it afar. What a pity
It is like one in the water who cries out for thirst;
It is like the child of a rich house
Who has strayed away among the poor.

And has forgotten that he is rich – may have become a beggar. You are rich, infinitely rich. You are all emperors and empresses, gods and godesses. Just recognize. Don’t get too much into begging – and desire creates the beggar. Even a man like Alexander is a beggar, because the desire is there. A man like Napoleon is a beggar, because the desire is there. See the richest people of this earth and you will see just beggars and nothing else. And sometimes it happens, you come across a beggar and you see the emperor sitting there under the tree – having nothing, trot possessing anything.

Just possess yourself and you have possessed all. Be the master of yourself and you have become the master of all. Possessing things, you will remain a beggar. And people go on changing but not really transforming. You possess one thing, then you start possessing another thing, then you possess a third thing. Sometimes you start possessing other-worldly things, but nothing changes. Just form changes. Somebody possesses money and somebody starts possessing virtue. Now it is the same, not much difference. […]

I am not saying start striving to stop striving, otherwise you will simply change the name of your madness and you will remain the same. You will just change the label of your neurosis. There are people who are greedy for money and there are people who are greedy for God. It makes no difference at all, they are the same people. Greed is greed. It makes no difference about what greed is, for what greed is. Greed is greed.

Just see the point that striving is meaningless, that going anywhere is meaningless. Not because I am saying it – you have to see it: Ihi passika. You have to see it, you are not to believe it. Believing won’t help; believing is just a whitewash on the surface. Seeing brings transformation.

It is llike one in the water who cries out for thirst . . .

Hakuin says: You are crying for happiness, and you are like a fish in the water crying for water and crying, ‘I am thirsty.’ You have it! And you are begging everywhere.

It is like the child of a rich house
Who has strayed away among the poor.
The cause of our circling through the six worlds
Is that we are on the dark paths of ignorance.
Dark path upon dark path treading,
When shall we escape from birth-and-death?

What is the dark path of ignorance? Looking outward. The farther you look, the more darkness. Because the light burns inside you. Looking closer and closer, and there is more light. That’s why we call a Buddha ‘enlightened’ – he has come to know and realize his light. It is a perpetual light – without any fuel it is there, it cannot be exhausted. Suns will be exhausted and the moons will be exhausted and the stars will be exhausted. But the light that burns inside you as consciousness is inexhaustible. It is eternal. […]

That’s why Buddhas go on giving you whatsoever they have attained, go on shaking. Because the beauty of it is in sharing. That’s why Hakuin has sung this song. That’s why I am here, sharing my being with you, my joy with you, my celebration with you. It is something that has to be shared to keep it alive. It is something that has to be given. The more you give it, the more you have of it.

Never be a miser in your love and in your understanding. Share it. And you will have more and more of it. Don’t hoard it, otherwise you will miss it. One day you will find it has disappeared and there is nothing but stink left. Instead of fragrance there will be stinking. Share your love with everybody and anybody. Don’t make conditions to your love. And the best way to share is to share your understanding, to share your meditation.

Hakuin is doing that in this song. He’s sharing his Buddhahood. What he has known, he is singing about it, he is praising it. He is making it clear to people who have not yet attained but CAN attain. Maybe somebody hears the song, somebody is struck by it, stabbed in the very heart by it. It is a lion’s roar: somebody may be awakened out of his sleep.

The cause of our circling through the six worlds
Is that we are on the dark paths of ignorance.
Dark path upon dark path treading,
When shall we escape from birth and death?

Birth means getting attached to the physical body. Death means the frustration of that attachment to the body. Getting free of birth and death means getting free of the physical body. But how can you be free from the physical body? Unless you know the second body you will not be free from the physical body. So it is not a question of being free from the physical body; the basic question is how to enter into the second body. Once you are in the second you are free from the first. And once you are in the third you are free from the second too.

That’s why you don’t see Buddha laughing. Not that he didn’t laugh, but he has not been shown as laughing. Because in the third body, the body of truth, even bliss is meaningless. First, the body, the physical body, is the body of misery. Attached to the physical body you remain miserable. The second body is the body of bliss. Once you reach to it, all misery disappears, you are blissful. But bliss is the opposite of misery – part of duality. The body of truth goes beyond both, it is transcendental. Misery has disappeared, so what is the point of keeping bliss? When there is no misery, there is no point in bliss. When poverty has disappeared what is the point of holding richness? Even that can be dispossessed.

When all duality disappears – pleasure and pain, happiness, unhappiness, day and night, life and death – then for the first time you are in God.

The Zen meditation of the Mahayana
Is beyond all our praises.
Giving and morality and the other perfections,
Taking of the name, repentance, discipline,
And the many other right actions,
All come back to the practice of meditation.

Hakuin says: All that has been done in the name of religion down the ages, can be reduced to one single thing, and that is meditation – dhyana. And what is dhyana? Becoming aware of your physical body – the first dhyana, the first step of meditation. Becoming watchful of your physical body. Watch yourself walking, watch yourself eating, watch yourself running, talking, listening. Watch. And through watching you will see you are different from the physical body. Because the watcher cannot be the watched, the observer cannot be the observed, the seer cannot be the seen, the knower cannot be the known.

Watch the physical body, and the second body will arise. It is there – but you will start feeling. You will start recognizing it, it will start penetrating you. This is the first step of meditation: watch the physical body. Then the second step, and the last, is: watch the bliss body. Watch your ecstasy. And then you will suddenly see, the watcher cannot be the watched. ‘Ecstasy is there, but I am far away from it. Bliss is there, but I am the knower of it.’

Then you start getting into the third body, the body of truth. Then you become a pure witness – sakshin. And that is liberation. Hakuin says it happens through meditation that you discover, or rediscover, your Buddhahood.

By the merit of a single sitting
He destroys innumerable accumulated sins.
How should there be wrong paths for him?

And just in a single sitting it can happen. Hakuin does not preach the gradual path, Hakuin preaches the sudden path. It can happen in a single moment. It can happen now. You need not postpone it for tomorrow. Who knows? Tomorrow may never come. It never comes, really. It can happen this very moment. If your awareness is lucid, if your awareness is there, clear, crystal-clear, it can happen this very moment. This very sitting, and you can become a Buddha. And nobody is hindering the path except yourself. Nobody is the enemy except yourself, and nobody is the friend either.

By the merit of a single sitting
He destroys innumerable accumulated sins.

Hakuin says: Don’t be worried about sins and your past karma. In a single sitting of meditation, all that can be burnt. The fire of meditation is so potential, it can burn your whole past in a single moment. There is no need to be worried about past karma – ‘I have done some bad, so I have to suffer. I have done something, so I have to go to Hell.’ If you want to go, you will have to go! But these are all rationalizations that you are trying to find. If you wish, it is your wish – it will be fulfilled. This existence is very obliging. It goes on obliging – if you want to go to Hell, it supports. It says, ‘Go! I am all with you.’

But if you decide that ‘Enough is enough, and I have suffered enough,’ a single moment of meditativeness is enough to burn all your millions of past lives and millions of future lives too. You are released.

Start meditating. First on the body. Then on your inner feelings of bliss, joy. And go moving inwards. And one day the song of Hakuin will burst forth in you too. You will flower. And unless you flower you have not lived, or lived in vain. You are here to bloom. And unless you bear much fruit and much flowers you will go on missing the meaning of life.

People come to me and they ask, ‘What is the meaning of life’ As if meaning is there somewhere sold in the market. As if meaning is a commodity. Meaning has to be created. There is no meaning in life. Meaning is not a given thing; it has to be created. It has to become your inner work. Then there is meaning – and there is great meaning.

Love and meditate and you will attain to meaning. And you will attain to life, and abundant life.

-Osho

From This Very Body the Buddha, Discourse #1

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.

Many of Osho’s books are available in the U.S. online from Amazon.com and Viha Osho Book Distributors. In India they are available from Amazon.in and Oshoworld.com.

The World Needs Masters – Osho

Can you explain the fine line between our trust in you and the saying, “If you meet the Buddha on the road, kill him”?

There is no fine line. Unless you trust, you don’t have a Buddha, you don’t have a master.

Buddha has made the statement: “If you meet me on the way, kill me.” It is not said to those who don’t trust him, who don’t love him, who have not merged their identity with his being. Once you are in deep trust with a master, there is a danger that you may become so blissful with the merger of your identity with the master that you may not like to become enlightened on your own; hence, the statement.

The statement is saying that you are feeling so blissful, just being in tune with an awakened being, you don’t know how much more bliss is possible if you yourself become awakened. But to become awakened you will have to drop this identity. You will have to forget even the master. It is something about the inner journey. When a person is moving in meditation on the inner journey, the last thing is the master. It is easy to drop other ideas, other feelings; it is easy to drop greed, anger. But finally you come to a point when you have to drop the master too. That is the last barrier.

It is just in your mind. You have loved the man so much, your love has made it so difficult, that you would prefer to remain unenlightened than to drop the master. And a real master will say, “Drop me, so that you can also become a master in your own right.”

It happened in Ramakrishna’s life – and Ramakrishna was alive just in the last part of the preceding century, so he is not very far away, he is very close to us. He was a great devotee of the mother goddess, Kali. And it was not a formality, it was not just like going every Sunday to the church. He was the priest of the temple of Kali, but his behavior was strange. Sometimes he would worship, sometimes he would not open the doors of the temple at all. Sometimes he would worship the whole day, from morning to evening, till he fell down unconscious from dancing.

Rani Rasmani had made the temple near the Ganges in Calcutta – a beautiful temple and a very scenic place. But Rani Rasmani, although she was a queen of a small kingdom, belonged to the fourth caste of the Hindus, the untouchables. So no brahmin was ready to become a priest in the temple of an untouchable. For years there was no priest. Rasmani was very much in trouble. She looked all over Bengal; she was ready to give any salary the priest wanted, but no brahmin was ready to worship in a temple of a sudra, an untouchable.

But when Ramakrishna was approached, he said, “I will come.” Even Rasmani was a little puzzled: the man seems to be a little mad, because no brahmin was ready to come. Ramakrishna said, “Whether the temple is made by an untouchable or by a brahmin, the highest caste, the mother Kali is the same; it doesn’t matter. I am coming, and whatever salary you feel is right, must be right. I don’t know much about money – you are a queen; your decision will be far better.” When she heard that sometimes he dances, sings songs the whole day, and sometimes he does not even open the door, Rani Rasmani called him and said, “This is not right.”

He said, “Nobody can say to me what is right and what is wrong: it is a love affair. Only I know and my mother Kali knows. Sometimes I get angry at her when she does not behave. I have been for three days dancing, and she has not even given a little vision to me? Now let her be punished! I am not going to open the doors, and I am not going to offer the food.”

Rasmani said, “You are strange! You are supposed to be a priest – you have to do the ritual.” He said, “I am not a priest, and I am not supposed to do any ritual. I love! I love the Kali in my village. I will continue; if you are worried you can stop my salary… because when I prepare food for Kali, first I taste it, then I offer it to her. So that’s enough, I don’t need much – I can just taste a little more!”

This was unimaginable. In India you cannot taste anything and then offer it to God, or to a goddess. Rasmani said, “This is too much!”

He said, “No. My mother used to do the same. She would taste everything before she gave it to me. Was it worth giving or not? Has the taste come out right or not? I cannot offer anything to my mother without tasting it.”

This man, Ramakrishna, was really in love with that statue. Nobody was there, but his love was real. The goddess was unreal, but his love was not unreal.

One wandering mystic came to the temple and said to Ramakrishna, “You have not yet attained to the ultimate consciousness, and I can see you are capable of it. You are very close to it. Only one thing is blocking the way: this mother goddess, Kali. You love her too much. She does not exist, but your love certainly exists. And you have created a great image of her. You have dropped everything else from your mind, you are ready to reach to ultimate samadhi, ultimate ecstasy, but you will have to cut off the head of Kali.”

Ramakrishna said, “That is a little hard. Killing one’s own mother? – what are you saying? I would rather remain unenlightened. And anyway, the moment I close my eyes I see her; she is so beautiful and so alive, I cannot do this.”

But the mystic insisted. He said, “I have never come across a man who is so close – just one step!”

Ramakrishna was a simple man. He said, “Then you will have to help me, because when I close my eyes, I will not remember you. And Kali is standing before me, so gorgeous, so beautiful! And it is such an immense bliss to see her, I completely forget.”

Many times, he tried. He would close his eyes, and soon he was swaying, as if from an inner dance. And the mystic would say, “Wake up! Don’t forget what I have said.” Ramakrishna would open his eyes and say, “But this seems to be impossible.” Then the mystic found a way. He brought a piece of glass, really sharp, like a knife, and he said, “I will do one thing: I will just cut your forehead with this piece of glass. It will be painful, but it will remind you. The same way, you cut the mother Kali.”

Ramakrishna said, “Let us try.”

The mystic cut Ramakrishna’s forehead and the mark remained all his life. Blood started flowing, the pain was intense, and he remembered: with great courage, he cut the image of Kali in two parts – it was just in his imagination – and Kali fell in two parts. And he went into transcendental ecstasy. It took six days to wake him up, he was so deep in ecstasy. And the mystic said, “Don’t disturb him.”

After six days he was awakened, and his first words were, “The last barrier has fallen! I am grateful to you,” he said to the mystic. “If you had not insisted, I would have remained happy, but now I know what bliss is. It is a millionfold more.”

That is the meaning of Gautam Buddha’s saying. It is not for all, because you don’t have that love.

When you go inside you will not find Gautam Buddha. You may find all kinds of idiots there: the attorney general of Oregon, Governor Atiyeh, Ronald Reagan – anybody.

The statement is not for you. The statement is for those who had loved Buddha so much that Buddha knew that they could drop everything else, but they could not drop him. So he had to say, “When you meet me on the way” – that way is the inner way – “just chop my head off, so that you can become an enlightened person on your own.” And that is the joy of a master, to see his disciple also becoming a master.

This is the meaning when I say that this commune is a mystery school. The effort is to have everyone become a master; just disciplehood won’t do. I want you all to be masters. The world needs masters. Only a great energy of masters around the world can prevent the catastrophe of a third world war, which is looming on the horizon.

So it is not only a question of your enlightenment. It is also a question of the life or death of this whole planet.

-Osho

From From Bondage to Freedom, Discourse #26

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.

Many of Osho’s books are available in the U.S. online from Amazon.com and Viha Osho Book Distributors. In India they are available from Amazon.in and Oshoworld.com.

Without any Breaks – Annamalai Swami

Q: Are there no breaks at all in the jnani’s awareness of the Self? For example, if he is engrossed in reading a good book, will his full attention ‘be always on the book? Will he simultaneously be aware that he is the Self?

AS: If there are breaks in his Self-awareness this means that he is not yet a jnani. Before one becomes established in this state without any breaks, without changes, one has to contact and enjoy this state many times. By steady meditation it finally becomes permanent.

It is very difficult to attain Self-abidance, but once it is attained it is retained effortlessly and never lost. It is a little like putting a rocket into space. A great effort and great energy are required to escape the earth’s gravitational field. If the rocket is not going fast enough, gravity will pull it back to earth. But once it has escaped the pull of gravity it can stay out in space quite effortlessly without falling back to earth…

-Annamalai Swami

From Living by the Words of Bhagavan, p. 284

%d bloggers like this: