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

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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

Sudden Enlightenment and its Obstacles – Osho

You said that either one sees the world or the Brahman and that no gradually increasing perception of the Brahman is possible. But in experience we feel that as we become aware and more silent and still, the feeling of the divine presence becomes gradually clearer and clearer. What is this gradual growth and clarity if the authentic experience is never gradual, but sudden?

This has been a very ancient problem: “Is enlightenment sudden or gradual?” Many things have to be understood. There has been a tradition which says that enlightenment is gradual and that everything can be divided into degrees, everything can be divided into steps – that like anything else, knowledge can also be divided; you can become more and more wise, you can become more and more enlightened. This has been widely accepted because the human mind cannot conceive of anything sudden. Mind wants to divide, analyze. Mind is a divider. Degrees can be understood by the mind, but suddenness is non – mental-beyond mind.

If I say to you that you are ignorant and that gradually you will become wise, this is comprehensible, you can comprehend it. If I say to you, “No, there is no gradual growth. Either you are ignorant or you become enlightened, there is a sudden jump,” then the question arises of how to become enlightened. If there were no gradualness, there could be no progress. If there were no degree of growth, no degrees, then you could not make progress, you could not proceed. From where to begin? In a sudden explosion, the beginning and the end are both the same. There is no gap between the beginning and the end, so from where to begin? The beginning is the end. It becomes a puzzle for the mind, it becomes a koan. But sudden enlightenment seems to be impossible. It is not that it is impossible, but that the mind cannot conceive of it. And, remember, how can the mind conceive of enlightenment? It cannot. It has been widely accepted that this inner explosion is also gradual growth. Even many enlightened persons have conceded that to your minds, and they have said, “Yes, there is a gradual growth.”

It is not that there is. They have said it and accepted your attitude, your way of perception. They have been in a deep compassion for you. They know that if you start thinking that it is gradual, the start will be good, but there will be no gradual growth. But if you start, if you go on seeking it, someday the sudden thing will happen to you. And if it is said that enlightenment is only sudden and no gradual growth is possible, you are not even going to start and it will never happen. Many enlightened persons have said that enlightenment is a gradual thing just to help you, just to persuade you to start.

Something is possible through gradual process, but not enlightenment – not enlightenment, something else. And that something else becomes helpful. For example, if you are making water to evaporate it, heating it, evaporation will come suddenly. At a certain point, at a hundred degrees, evaporation will happen – suddenly! There will be no gradual growth between water and vapor. You cannot divide; you cannot say that this water is a little vapor and a little water. Either it is water or it is all vapor. Suddenly the water jumps into the state of vapor. There is a jump – not gradual growth. But by heating you are gradually giving heat to the water. You are helping it to reach the hundred degree point, the evaporating point. This is a natural growth. Up to the evaporating point, the water will grow in the sense of being more and more hot. Then evaporation will happen suddenly.

So there have been masters who were wise, compassionate, who used the language of the human mind which you can understand, telling you, “Yes, there is a gradual growth.” It gives you courage and confidence and hope, and a possibility that it can happen to you also. You cannot attain in a sudden explosion, but by and by, step by step, with your limitations, with your weaknesses, you can grow to it. It may take many lives, but still there is hope. You will just get heated by all your efforts.

The second thing to remember: even hot water is still water. So even if you become more clear in your mind, more pure in your perceptions, more moral, more centered, you are still man, not a buddha, not enlightened. You become more silent, more still, calmer. You feel a deep bliss, but still you are a man, and your feelings are really negative, not positive.

You feel calm because you are now less tense. You feel blissful because now you are clinging less to your miseries; you are not creating them. You feel collected. It is not that you have come to realize the one, but only because now you are less divided. Remember this: your growth is negative. You are just hot water. The possibility is there that at any moment you will come to the point where evaporation happens. When it happens, you will not feel calmness, you will not even feel blissful, you will not feel silent, because these attributes are relative to their opposites. When you are tense, you can feel silence. When you feel noise, you can feel stillness. When you are divided, fragmentary, you can feel oneness. When you are in suffering, anguish, you can feel bliss.

That is why Buddha was silent – because language cannot now express that which is beyond polarities. He cannot say, “Now I am filled with bliss,” because even this feeling that “Now I am filled with bliss” is possible only with a background of suffering and anguish. You can feel health only with a background of illness and disease; you can feel life only with a background of death. Buddha cannot say, “Now I am deathless,” because death has disappeared so completely that deathlessness cannot be felt.

If the misery has disappeared so completely, how can you feel blissful? If the noise and the anguish are so absolutely non-existent, how can you feel silence? All these experiences, feelings, are related to their opposites. Without their opposites they cannot be felt. If darkness disappears completely, how can you feel light? It is impossible.

Buddha cannot say, “I have become light!” He cannot say, “Now I am filled with light.” If he says such things, we will say he is not yet a buddha. He cannot utter such things. Darkness must be there if you want to feel light; death must be there if you want to feel deathlessness. You cannot avoid the opposite. It is a basic necessity for any experience to exist. So what is Buddha’s experience? Whatsoever we know, it is not that. It is neither negative nor positive, neither this nor that. And whatsoever can be expressed, it is not that.

That is why Lao Tzu insists so much that truth cannot be said, and the moment you say it you have falsified it. Already it is untrue. Truth cannot be said because of this: it cannot be divided into polar opposites, and language is meaningful only with polar opposites. Language becomes meaningless otherwise. Without the contrary, language loses meaning.

So there is a tradition which says that enlightenment is gradual, but that tradition is not really the truth. It is just a half-truth uttered in compassion for human minds. Enlightenment is sudden, and it cannot be otherwise. It is a jump! It is a discontinuity from your past! Try to understand: if something is gradual, the past goes on remaining in it. If something is gradual, then there is a continuity.

There is no gap. If from ignorance to knowledge there is gradual growth, the ignorance cannot completely disappear. It will remain, it will continue, because there has been no discontinuity, there has been no gap. So the ignorance may become more polished, the ignorance may become more knowledgeable. The ignorance may appear wise, but it is there. The more polished it is, then, of course, the more dangerous. The more knowledgeable it is, then the more cunning one is and the more capable of deceiving oneself.

Enlightenment and ignorance are absolutely separate, discontinuous. A jump is needed – a jump in which the past dissolves completely. The old is gone; it is no more, and the new has appeared which was never there before.

Buddha is reported to have said, “I am not that one who was seeking. The one who has appeared now never was before.” This looks absurd, illogical, but it is so. It is so! Buddha says, “I am not he who was seeking; I am not he who was desiring enlightenment; I am not he who was ignorant. The old man is dead completely. I am a new one. I never existed in that old man. There has been a gap. The old has died and the new is born.”

For the mind to conceive of this is difficult. How can you conceive of it? How can you conceive of a gap? Something must continue. How can something disappear completely and something new appear? It was absurd for logical minds, it was absurd for scientific minds, just two decades before. But now, for science, it is not absurd. Now they say that deep down in the atom electrons appear and disappear, and they take jumps. From one point the electron takes a jump to another; in between the two it is not. It appears at point A, then disappears and reappears at point B, and within the gap it is no more. It is not there. It becomes absolutely non-existent.

If this is so, it means that non-existence is also a sort of existence. It is difficult to conceive of, but it is so: non-existence is also a sort of existence. It is as if something moves from the visible to the invisible, as if something moves from form to formlessness.

When Gautam Siddharth, the old man who died in Gautam Buddha, was seeking, he was a visible form. When the enlightenment happened, that form completely dissolved into the formless. For a moment there was a gap; there was no one. Then from that formlessness a new form arose.

This was Gautam Buddha. Because the body continues in the same way, we think that there is a continuity, but the inner reality changes completely. Because the body continues in the same way, that is why we say “Gautam Buddha” – that “Gautam Siddharth has now become Gautam the awakened; he has become a buddha.” But Buddha himself says, “I am not he who was seeking. I am a totally different one.”

It is difficult for the mind to conceive of this – and for the mind many things are difficult, but they cannot be denied just because they are difficult for the mind. The mind has to yield to those impossibilities which are incomprehensible to it. Sex cannot yield to the mind; the mind has to yield to sex. This is one of the most basic inner facts – that enlightenment is a discontinuous phenomenon. The old simply disappears and the new is born.

There has been another tradition, a later tradition, of those who have been insisting all through history that Enlightenment is sudden – that it is not gradual. But those who belong to it are very few. They stick to the truth, but they are bound to be very few because no following can be created if sudden Enlightenment is the case. You simply cannot understand it, so how can you follow it? It is shocking to the logical structure and it seems absurd, impossible. But remember one thing: then you move into deeper realms. Whether of matter or of mind, you will have to encounter many things of which a superficial mind cannot conceive.

Tertullian, one of the greatest Christian mystics, has said, “I believe in God because God is the greatest absurdity. I believe in God because mind cannot believe in God.” It is impossible to believe in God; no proof, no argument, no logic can help the belief in God. Everything goes against him, against his existence, but Tertullian says, “That is why I believe – because only by believing in an absurdity can I move away from my mind.”

This is beautiful. If you want to move away from your mind, you will need something of which your mind cannot conceive. If your mind can conceive of it, it will absorb it into its own system, and then you cannot transcend your mind. That is why every religion has insisted on some point which is absurd. No religion can exist without some absurdity just as a foundation in it. From that absurdity you either turn back and say, “I cannot believe so I will go away.” Then you remain yourself – or you take a jump, you turn away from your mind. And unless your mind is killed the enlightenment cannot happen.

Your mind is the problem, your logic is the problem, your arguments are the problem.

They are on the surface. They look true, but they deceive. They are not true. For example, look how the mind’s structure functions. The mind divides everything in two, and nothing is divisible. Existence is indivisible; you cannot divide it – but mind goes on dividing it. It says that “this” is life and “this” is death. What is the actual fact? The actual fact is that both are the same. You are both alive and dying this very moment; you are doing both. Rather, you are both -death and life.

Mind divides. It says, “this” is death and “this” is life. Not only does it divide; it says that both are opposites, enemies, and that death is trying to destroy life. And it looks okay: death is “trying to destroy life.” But if you penetrate deeper, deeper than the mind, death is not trying to destroy life!

You cannot exist without death. Death is helping you to exist. It is every moment helping you to exist. If for a single moment death stops working, you will die.

Death is every moment throwing away many parts in you which have become non-functional. Many cells die; they are removed by death. When they are removed, new ones are born. You are growing: something is dying and something is being born continuously. Every moment there is death and life, and both are functioning. In language I have to call them both two. They are not two; they are two aspects of one phenomenon. Life and death are one; “life-death” is a process. But mind divides.

That division looks okay for us, but that division is false.

You say “this” is light and “that” is dark; you divide. But where does darkness start and where does light end? Can you demarcate them? You cannot demark them. Actually, whiteness and blackness are two poles of a long greyness, and that greyness is life. On one pole blackness appears and on another pole whiteness appears, but the reality is grey, and that grey contains both in itself. Mind divides and then everything looks clear-cut. Life is very confusing; that is why life is a mystery.

And because of this, mind cannot understand life. It is helpful to create clear-cut concepts. You can think easily, conveniently, but you miss the very reality of life. Life is a mystery, and mind demystifies everything. Then you have dead fragments, not the whole.

With the mind you will not be able to conceive of how enlightenment is sudden, how you will disappear and something new will be there which you had never known before. But don’t try to understand through mind. Rather, practice something which will make you more and more hot.

Rather, try to attain some fire which will make you more and more hot. And then one day suddenly you will know that the old has disappeared; the water is no more. This is a new phenomenon. You have evaporated, and everything has changed totally.

Water was always flowing downwards, and after evaporation the new phenomenon is rising upwards.

The whole law has changed. You have heard about one law, Newton’s law of gravity, which says that the earth attracts everything downwards. But the law of gravity is only one law. There is another law. You may not have heard about it because science has yet to uncover it, but yoga and tantra have known it for centuries. They call it levitation. Gravity is the pull downwards and levitation is the pull upwards.

The story of how the law of gravity was discovered is well known. Newton was sitting under a tree, under an apple tree, and then one apple fell down. Because of this he started thinking, and he felt that something is pulling the apple downwards. Tantra and yoga ask, “How did the apple reach upwards in the first place? How?” That must be explained first – how the apple reached the upward position, how the tree is growing upwards. The apple was not there; it was hidden in a seed, and then the apple traveled the whole journey. It reached the upward position and only then did it fall down. So gravity is a secondary law. Levitation was there first. Something was pulling the apple upwards. What is that?

In life we easily know gravity because we are all pulled downwards. The water flows downwards; it is under the law of gravity. When it evaporates, suddenly the law also evaporated. Now it is under levitation, it rises upwards.

Ignorance is under the law of gravity: you always move downwards, and whatsoever you do makes no difference. You have to move downwards. In every way you will have to move downwards, and struggle alone will not be of much help unless you enter a different law – the law of levitation. That is what samadhi is – the door for levitation. Once you evaporate, once you are no more water, everything changes. It is not that now you can control: there is no need to control, you simply cannot flow downwards now. As it was impossible before to rise upwards, now it is impossible to flow downwards.

It is not that a buddha tries to be non-violent; he cannot do otherwise. It is not that he tries to be loving; he cannot do otherwise. He has to be loving. That is not a choice, not an effort, not any cultivated virtue, it is simply that now this is the law: he rises upwards. Hate is under the law of gravity; love is under levitation.

This sudden transformation doesn’t mean that you are not to do anything and that you are simply to wait for the sudden transformation. Then it will never come. This is the puzzle. When I say – or someone else says – that enlightenment is sudden; we think that if it is sudden nothing can be done that we must simply wait. When it will happen, it will happen, so what can one do? If it is gradual you can do something.

But I say to you that it is not gradual, and yet you can do something. And you have to do something, but that something will not bring you enlightenment. That something will bring you near the phenomenon of enlightenment. That something will make you open for the phenomenon of enlightenment to happen. So enlightenment cannot be an outcome of your efforts; it is not. Through your efforts you simply become available for the higher law of levitation. Your availability will come through your effort, not enlightenment. You will become open, you will become non-resistant, you will become cooperative for the higher law to work. And once you are cooperative and non-resistant, the higher law starts functioning. Your efforts will yield you; your efforts will make you more receptive.

It is just like this: you are sitting in your room with closed doors. The sun is outside, but you are in darkness. You cannot do anything to bring the sun in, but if you simply open the doors your room becomes available. You cannot bring the sun in, but you can block it out. If you open your doors, the sun will enter, the waves will come; the light will come into the room.

You are not really bringing the light; you are simply removing the hindrance. The light comes by itself. Understand it deeply: you cannot do anything to reach enlightenment, but you are doing many things to hinder it – to hinder it from reaching to you. You are creating many barriers, so you can only do something negatively: you can throw the barriers; you can open the doors. The moment the doors are open, the rays will enter, the light will touch you and transform you.

All effort in this sense is to destroy the barriers, not to attain enlightenment. All effort is negative. It is just like medicine. The medicine cannot give you health; it can only destroy your diseases. Once the diseases are not there, health happens; you become available. If diseases are there, health cannot happen.

That is why medical science, Eastern or Western, has not yet been able to define what health is. They can define each disease exactly – they know thousands and thousands of diseases and they have defined them all – but they cannot define what health is. At the most they can say that when there is no disease you are healthy. But what is health? Something which goes beyond mind. It is something which is there: you can have it, you can feel it, but you cannot define it.

You have known health, but can you define it – what it is? The moment you try to define it you will have to bring disease in. You will have to talk something about disease, and you will have to say, “No-disease is health.” This is ridiculous. To define health you need disease? And disease has definite qualities. Health also has its own qualities, but they are not so definite because they are infinite. You can feel them; when health is there you know it is there. But what is it? Diseases can be treated, destroyed. Barriers are broken and the light enters. Similar is the phenomenon of enlightenment. It is a spiritual health. Mind is a spiritual disease, and meditation is nothing but medicine.

Buddha is said to have said, “I am a medicine man, a vaidya – a physician. I am not a teacher and I have not come to give you doctrines. I know a certain medicine which can cure your diseases. And don’t ask about health. Take the medicine, destroy the disease, and you will know what health is. Don’t ask about it.” Buddha says, “I am not a metaphysician, I am not a philosopher. I am not interested in what God is, in what soul is, in what kaivalya, aloneness, moksha, liberation, and nirvana is. I am not interested! I am simply interested in what disease is and in how it can be cured. I am a medicine man.” His approach is absolutely scientific. He has diagnosed human dilemma and disease. His approach is absolutely right.

Destroy the barriers. What are the barriers? Thinking is the basic barrier. When you think, a barrier of thoughts is created. Between you and the reality a wall of thoughts is created, and thoughts are more dense than any stone wall can be. And then there are many layers of thought. You cannot penetrate through them and see what the real is. You go on thinking about what the real is and you go on imagining what the real is, and the real is here and now waiting for you. If you become available to it, it will happen to you. You go on thinking about what the real is, but how can you think if you don’t know?

You cannot think about something which you don’t know; you can only think about something which you already know. Thinking is repetitious, tautological; it never reaches to anything new and unknown. Through thinking you never touch the unknown; you only touch the known, and it is meaningless because you already know it. You can go on feeling it again and again; you may enjoy the feeling, but nothing new comes out of it.

Stop thinking. Dissolve thinking, and the barrier is broken. Then your doors are open and the light can enter. And once the light enters, you know that the old is no more. You know now that that which you are is absolutely the new. It never was before; you had never known it; but you may even say that this is the “ancient-most” – it was there always, not known to you.

You can use both expressions; they mean the same. You can call it the “ancient-most” – the brahman who has always been there, and you can say that you were missing it continuously.

Or you can say that this is the newest – that which has happened only now and never was before.

That too is right because for you this is the new. If you want to speak about the truth, you will have to use paradoxical expressions. The Upanishads say, “This is the new and this is the old. This is the most ancient and this is the newest. It is the far and the near both.” But then language becomes paradoxical, contradictory.

And you ask me, “What is this gradual growth and clarity if the authentic experience is never gradual, but sudden?” This clarity is of the mind; this clarity is of a lessening of disease; this clarity is of the falling of barriers. If one barrier falls you are less burdened, your eyes are less clouded. If another barrier falls you are still more unburdened, your eyes become still more clear. But this clarity is not of enlightenment; this clarity is only of a lessening disease, not of health. When all barriers disappear, with those barriers your mind also disappears.

Then you cannot say, “Now my mind is clear, it is no more.” Then you simply say, “Now there is no mind.” When there is no mind, then the clarity is of enlightenment. Then the clarity is of enlightenment! That is absolutely different. Then another dimension has opened. But you will have to pass through clarities of mind. Remember always that no matter how clear your mind becomes; it is still a barrier.

No matter how transparent your mind becomes, even if it becomes a transparent glass and you can look to the other side, still it is a barrier and you will have to break it completely. So sometimes it happens that when one is meditating one becomes more and more clear, more sane, more still; silence is felt. Then one clings to meditation and thinks that everything is achieved. Great masters have always been emphasizing that a day comes when you have to throw your meditation also.

I will tell you one story – one Zen story. Bokuju was meditating – meditating very deeply, meditating with his whole heart. His master would come every day, and he would just laugh and go back.

Bokuju became annoyed. The master would not say anything, he would just come and look at him, laugh and go away. And Bokuju was feeling very good in meditation. His meditation was deepening, and he needed someone to appreciate him. He was waiting for the master to pat him and say, “Good, Bokuju. You did well.” But the master just laughed. The laughter felt insulting – as if Bokuju was not progressing, and he was progressing. As he progressed more, the laughter grew more and more insulting. It was impossible to tolerate it now.

One day the master came, and Bokuju was feeling absolutely silent as far as mind can go; there was no noise within, no thought. The mind was absolutely transparent; no barrier was felt. He was filled with a subtle deep happiness, joy was bubbling all over, he was in ecstasy. Thus, he thought, “Now my master will not laugh. Now the moment has come, and he is going to tell me, ‘Now Bokuju, you have become enlightened.’”

That day the master came: the master came with a brick in his hand, and he started rubbing that brick on the rock on which Bokuju was sitting. He was so silent, and the rubbing of the brick created noise. He became annoyed. At last he couldn’t tolerate it, so he opened his eyes and asked his master, “What are you doing?”

The master said, “I am trying to make this brick a mirror, and by continuously rubbing it I hope that someday this brick will become a mirror.”

Bokuju said, “You are behaving stupidly. This stone, this brick, is not going to become a mirror. No matter how much you rub it, it is not going to become a mirror.”

The master laughed and said, “Then what are you doing? This mind can never become enlightened, and you go on rubbing and rubbing it. You are polishing it, and you are feeling so good that when I laugh you feel annoyed.” And suddenly, as the master threw his brick, Bokuju became aware. When the master threw his brick, suddenly he felt that the master was right, and the mind broke. Then from that day on there was no mind and no meditation. He became enlightened.

The master said to him, “Now you can move anywhere. Go, and teach others also. First teach them meditation; then teach them non-meditation. First teach them how to make the mind clear, because only a very clear mind can understand that now even this clear mind is a barrier. Only a deeply meditative mind can understand that now even meditation has to be thrown.

You cannot understand it right now. Krishnamurti goes on saying that there is no need of any meditation, and he is right. But he is talking to wrong persons. He is right; there is no need for any meditation, but he is wrong because of to whom he is saying this. Those who cannot even understand what meditation is, how can they understand that there is no need for any meditation?

This is going to be harmful for them because they will cling to this idea. They will feel that this idea is very good, there is no need of meditation, so “We are already enlightened.”

Listening to Krishnamurti, many feel that now there is no need of meditation and that those who are meditating are foolish. They may waste their whole life because of this thought, and this thought is right. There comes a point when meditation has to be thrown; there comes a point when meditation becomes a barrier. But wait for this point to come. You cannot throw something which you don’t have. Krishnamurti says, “No need of meditation; don’t meditate.” But you have never meditated, so how can you say, “Don’t meditate”?

A rich man can renounce his riches, not a poor man. To renounce you need something to renounce in the first place. If you meditate, you can renounce it one day – and that is the last renunciation, and that is the greatest. Wealth can he renounced; it is easy. Family can be renounced; it is not difficult.

The whole world can be renounced because everything is outer and outer and outer. The last thing is meditation, the innermost wealth. And when you renounce it, you have renounced yourself. Then no self remains – not even the meditating self, the great meditator. Even that image is broken. You have fallen into nothingness. Only in this nothingness, the discontinuity. The old has disappeared and the new has happened. You become available through meditation.

Whatsoever is felt through meditation, don’t think that it is enlightenment. These are just glimpses of a lessening disease, of a dispersing disease. You feel good. The disease is less, so you feel relatively healthy. Real health is not yet there, but you are more healthy than before and it is good to be more healthy than before.

-Osho

From The Book of Secrets, Discourse #40, 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.

Fulfillment Through Centering – Osho

There are many questions. The first: 

Is self- actualization a basic need of man?

First, try to understand what is meant by self-actualization. A. H. Maslow has used this term “self-actualization.” Man is born as potentiality. He is not really actual – just potential. Man is born as a possibility, not as an actuality. He may become something; he may attain actualization of his potentiality or he may not attain. The opportunity may be used or it may not be used. And nature is not forcing you to become actual. You are free. You can choose to become actual; you can choose not to do anything about it. Man is born as a seed. Thus, no man is born fulfilled – just with the possibility of fulfillment.

If that is the case – and that is the case – then self-actualization becomes a basic need. Because unless you are fulfilled, unless you become what you can be or what you are meant to be, unless your destiny is fulfilled, unless you actually attain, unless your seed becomes a fulfilled tree, you will feel that you are missing something. And everyone is feeling, that he is missing something. That feeling of missing is really because of this, that you are not yet actual. It is not really that you are missing riches or position, prestige or power. Even if you get whatsoever you demand – riches, power, prestige, anything – you will feel this constant sense of something missing within you, because this something missing is not related with anything outward. It is related with your inner growth. Unless you become fulfilled, unless you come to a realization, a flowering, unless you come to an inner satisfaction in which you feel, “Now this is what I was meant to be,” this sense of something missing will be felt. And you cannot destroy this feeling of something missing by anything else.

So self-actualization means a person has become what he was to become. He was born as a seed and now he has flowered. He has come to the complete growth, an inner growth, to the inner end.

The moment you feel that all your potentialities have become actual, you will feel the peak of life, of love, of existence itself.

Abraham Maslow, who has used this term “self-actualization,” has also coined another term: “peak experience.” When one attains to oneself, he reaches a peak – a peak of bliss. Then there is no hankering after anything. He is totally content with himself. Now nothing is lacking; there is no desire, no demand, no movement. Whatsoever he is, he is totally content with himself. Self-actualization becomes a peak experience, and only a self-actualized person can attain peak experiences. Then whatsoever he touches, whatsoever he is doing or not doing – even just existing – is a peak experience for him; just to be is blissful. Then bliss is not concerned with anything outside, it is just a by-product of the inner growth.

A buddha is a self-actualized person. That is why we picture Buddha, Mahavir and others – why we have made sculptures, pictures, depictions of them – sitting on a fully blossomed lotus. That fully blossomed lotus is the peak of flowering inside. Inside they have flowered and have become fully blossomed. That inner flowering gives a radiance, a constant showering of bliss from them. All those who come even within their shadows, all those who come near them feel a silent milieu around them.

There is an interesting story about Mahavir. It is a myth, but myths are beautiful and they say much which cannot be said otherwise. It is reported that when Mahavir would move, all around him, in an area of about twenty-four miles, all the flowers would bloom. Even if it was not the season for the flowers, they would bloom. This is simply a poetic expression, but even if one was not self-actualized, if one were to come in contact with Mahavir his flowering would become infectious, and one would feel an inner flowering in oneself also. Even if it was not the right season for a person, even if he was not ready, he would reflect, he would feel an echo. If Mahavir was near someone, that person would feel an echo within himself, and he would have a glimpse of what he could be.

Self-actualization is the basic need. And when I say basic, I mean that if all your needs are fulfilled, all except self-realization, self-actualization, you will feel unfulfilled. In fact, if self-actualization happens and nothing else is fulfilled, still you will feel a deep, total fulfillment. That is why Buddha was a beggar, but yet an emperor.

Buddha came to Kashi when he became enlightened. The king of Kashi came to see him and he asked, “I do not see that you have anything, you are just a beggar, yet I feel myself a beggar in comparison to you. You do not have anything, but the way you walk, the way you look, the way you laugh makes it seem as if the whole world is your kingdom. And you have nothing visible – nothing! So where is the secret of your power? You look like an emperor.” Really, no emperor has ever looked like that – as if the whole world belongs to him. “You are the king, but where is your power, the source?”

So Buddha said, “It is in me. My power, my source of power, whatsoever you feel around me is really within me. I do not have anything except myself, but it is enough. I am fulfilled; now I do not desire anything. I have become desireless.”

Really, a self-actualized person will become desireless. Remember this. Ordinarily we say that if you become desireless, you will know yourself. The contrary is more true: if you know yourself, you will become desireless. And the emphasis of tantra is not on being desireless, but on becoming self-actualized. Then desirelessness follows.

Desire means you are not fulfilled within; you are missing something so you hanker after it. You go on, from one desire to another, in search of fulfillment. That search never ends because one desire creates another desire. Really, one desire creates ten desires. If you go in search of a desireless state of bliss through desires, you will never reach. But if you try something else – methods of self-actualization, methods of realizing your inner potentiality, of making them actual – then the more you will become actual the less and less desires will be felt, because really, they are felt only because you are empty inside. When you are not empty within, desiring ceases.

What to do about self-actualization? Two things have to be understood. One: self-actualization doesn’t mean that if you become a great painter or a great musician or a great poet you will be self-actualized. Of course, a part of you will be actualized, and even that gives much contentment. If you have a potentiality of being a good musician, and if you fulfill it and you become a musician, a part of you will be fulfilled – but not the total. The remaining humanity within you will remain unfulfilled. You will be lopsided. One part will have grown, and the remaining will have stayed just like a stone hanging around your neck.

Look at a poet. When he is in his poetic mood he looks like a buddha; he forgets himself completely. The ordinary man in the poetic mood is as if he is no more there. So when a poet is in his mood, he has a peak – a partial peak. And sometimes poets have glimpses which are only possible with enlightened, buddha-like minds. A poet can speak like a buddha. For example, Khalil Gibran speaks like a buddha but he is not a buddha. He is a poet – a great poet.

So if you see Khalil Gibran through his poetry, he looks like Buddha, Christ or Krishna. But if you go and meet the man Khalil Gibran, he is just ordinary. He talks about love so beautifully – even a buddha may not talk so beautifully. But a buddha knows love with his total being. Khalil Gibran knows love in his poetic flight. When he is on his poetic flight, he has glimpses of love – beautiful glimpses. He expresses them with rare insight. But if you go and see the real Khalil Gibran, the man, you will feel a disparity. The poet and the man are far apart. The poet seems to be something which happens to this man sometimes, but this man is not the poet.

That is why poets feel that when they are creating poetry someone else is creating; they are not creating. They feel as if they have become instruments of some other energy, some other force. They are no more. This feeling comes because, really, their totality is not actualized – only a part of it is, a fragment.

You have not touched the sky. Only one of your fingers has touched the sky, and you remain rooted on the earth. Sometimes you jump, and for a moment you are not on the earth; you have deceived gravity. But the next moment you are on the earth again. When a poet is feeling fulfilled, he will have glimpses – partial glimpses. When a musician is feeling fulfilled, he will have partial glimpses.

It is said of Beethoven that when he was on the stage he was a different man, altogether different. Goethe has said that when Beethoven was on stage directing his group, his orchestra, he looked like a god. It could not be said that he was an ordinary man. He was not a man at all; he was superhuman. The way he looked, the way he raised his hands, was all superhuman. But when he came back from the stage he was just an ordinary man. The man on the stage seemed to be possessed by something else, as if Beethoven was no more there and some other force had entered into him. Back down from the stage he was again Beethoven, the man.

Because of this, poets, musicians, great artists, creative people are more tense – because they have two types of being. Ordinary man is not so tense because he always lives in one: he lives on the earth. But poets, musicians, great artists jump; they go beyond gravity. In certain moments they are not on this earth, they are not part of humanity. They become part of the buddha world – the land of the buddhas. Then again they are back here. They have two points of existence; their personalities are split.

So every creative artist, every great artist is in a certain way insane. The tension is so much! The rift, the gap between these two types of existences is so great – unbridgeably great. Sometimes he is just an ordinary man; sometimes he becomes buddha-like. Between these two points he is divided, but he has glimpses.

When I say self-actualization, I do not mean that you should become a great poet or you should become a great musician. I mean that you should become a total man. I do not say a great man because a great man is always partial. Greatness in anything is always partial. One moves and moves and moves in one direction, and in all other dimensions, all other directions, one remains the same – one becomes lopsided.

When I say become a total man, I do not mean become a great man. I mean create a balance, be centered, be fulfilled as a man – not as a musician, not as a poet, not as an artist, but fulfilled as a man. What does it mean to be fulfilled as a man? A great poet is a great poet because of great poetry. A great musician is great because of great music. A great man is a great man because of certain things he has done – he may be a great hero. A great man in any direction is partial. Greatness is partial, fragmentary. That is why great men have to face more anguish than ordinary men.

What is a total man? What is meant by being a whole man, a total man? It means, firstly, be centered; do not exist without a center. This moment you are something, the next moment something else. People come to me and I generally ask them, “Where do you feel your center – in the heart, in the mind, in the navel, where? In the sex center? Where? Where do you feel your center?”

Generally, they say, “Sometimes I feel it in the head, sometimes in the heart, sometimes I do not feel it at all.” So I tell them to close their eyes before me and feel it just now. In the majority of cases this happens: they say, “Just now, for a moment, I feel that I am centered in the head.” But the next moment they are not there. They say, “I am in the heart.” And the next moment the center has slipped, it is somewhere else, at the sex center or somewhere else.

Really, you are not centered; you are only momentarily centered. Each moment has its own center, so you go on shifting. When mind is functioning, you feel that the head is the center. When you are in love, you feel it is the heart. When you are not doing anything particularly, you are confused – you cannot find out where the center is, because you can find this out only when you are working, doing something. Then a particular part of the body becomes the center. But you are not centered. If you are not doing anything; you cannot find where your center of being is.

A total man is centered. Whatsoever he is doing, he remains in the center. If his mind is functioning, he is thinking, thinking goes on in the head but he remains centered in the navel. The center is never missed. He uses the head, but he never moves to the head. He uses the heart, but he never moves to the heart. All these things become instruments, and he remains centered.

Secondly, he is balanced. Of course, when one is centered one is balanced. His life is a deep balance. He is never one-sided; he is never at any extreme – he remains in the middle. Buddha has called this the middle path. He remains always in the middle.

A man who is not centered will always move to the extreme. When he eats he will eat much, he will overeat, or he can fast, but right eating is impossible for him. Fasting is easy, overeating is okay. He can be in the world, committed, involved, or he can renounce the world – but he can never be balanced. He can never remain in the middle, because if you are not centered you do not know what middle means.

A person who is centered is always in the middle in everything, never at any extreme. Buddha says his eating is right eating; it is neither overeating, nor fasting. His labor is right labor – never too much, never too little. Whatsoever he is, he is always balanced.

First thing: a self-actualized person will be centered.

Second thing: he will be balanced.

Thirdly: if these two things happen – centering, balance – many things will follow. He will always be at ease. Whatsoever the situation, the at-easeness will not be lost. I say whatsoever the situation – unconditionally, the at-easeness will not be lost, because one who is at the center is always at ease. Even if death comes, he will be at ease. He will receive death as one receives any other guest. If misery comes, he will receive it. Whatsoever happens, it cannot dislodge him from his center. That at-easeness is also a by-product of being centered.

For such a man, nothing is trivial, nothing is great; everything becomes sacred, beautiful, holy – everything! Whatsoever he is doing, whatsoever, it is of ultimate concern – as if of ultimate concern.

Nothing is trivial. He will not say, “This is trivial, this is great.” Really, nothing is great, nor is anything small and trivial. The touch of the man is significant. A self-actualized person, a balanced, centered person, changes everything. The very touch makes it great.

If you observe a buddha, you will see that he walks and he loves walking. If you go to Bodhgaya where Buddha attained enlightenment, to the bank of the Niranjana – to the place where he was sitting under the Bodhi tree – you will see that the place of his steps has been marked. He would meditate for one hour, then he would walk around. In Buddhist terminology this is called chakraman. He would sit under the Bodhi tree, then he would walk. But he would walk with a serene attitude, as if in meditation.

Someone asked Buddha, “Why do you do this? Sometimes you sit with closed eyes and meditate, then you walk.”

Buddha said, “Sitting in order to be silent is easy, so I walk. But I carry the same silence within. I sit, but inside I am the same – silent. I walk, but inside I am the same – silent.”

The inner quality is the same… When he meets an emperor and when he meets a beggar, a buddha is the same, he has the same inner quality. When meeting a beggar, he is not different, when meeting an emperor he is not different; he is the same. The beggar is not a nobody and the emperor is not a somebody. And really, while meeting a buddha, emperors have felt like beggars and beggars have felt like emperors. The touch, the man, the quality remains the same.

When Buddha was alive, every day in the morning he would say to his disciples, “If you have to ask anything, ask.” The day he was dying, that morning it was the same. He called his disciples and said, “Now if you want to ask anything, you can ask. And remember, that this is the last morning. Before this day ends, I will be no more.” He was the same. That was his daily question in the morning. He was the same! The day was the last, but he was the same. Just as on any other day, he said, “Okay, if you have to ask anything, you can ask – but this is the last day.”

There was no change of tone, but the disciples began to weep. They forgot to ask anything.

Buddha said, “Why are you weeping? If you would have wept on another day it would have been okay, but this is the last day. By the evening I will be no more, so do not waste time in weeping. Another day it would have been okay; you could have wasted time. Do not waste your time in weeping. Why are you weeping? Ask if you have anything to ask.” He was the same in life and death.

So thirdly, the self-actualized man is at ease. Life and death are the same; bliss and misery are the same. Nothing disturbs him, nothing dislocates him from his home, from his centeredness. To such a man you cannot add anything. You cannot take anything out of him, you cannot add anything to him – he is fulfilled. His every breath is a fulfilled breath, silent, blissful. He has attained. He has attained to existence, to being; he has flowered as a total man.

This is not a partial flowering. Buddha is not a great poet. Of course, whatsoever he says is poetry. He is not a poet at all, but even when he moves, walks, it is poetry. He is not a painter, but whenever he speaks, whatsoever he says becomes a painting. He is not a musician, but his whole being is music par excellence. The man as a totality has attained. So now, whatsoever he is doing or not doing… when he is sitting in silence, not doing anything, even in silence his presence works, creates; it becomes creative.

Tantra is concerned not with any partial growth; it is concerned with you as a total being. So three things are basic: you must be centered, rooted, and balanced; that is, always in the middle – of course, without any effort. If there is effort you are not balanced. And you must be at ease – at ease in the universe, at home in the existence, and then many things follow. This is a basic need, because unless this need is fulfilled you are a man only in name. You are a man as a possibility, you are not actually a man. You can be, you have the potentiality, but the potentiality has to be made actual.

-Osho

From The Book of Secrets, Discourse #10, 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.

Take Your Destiny in Your Hands – Osho

In the natural course, after millions of years and lives, one will be enlightened. But we might have already passed through millions of years and lives and yet are not enlightened. Why?

You cannot ask why. You can ask why only if you are doing something. If nature is doing something you cannot ask why; it is up to nature. And nature is not responsible; it is not going to answer you. It is completely silent. And for nature, millions of lives are nothing; for nature it may be just seconds. To you, millions of lives and years is a long history; for nature it is nothing. Nature is not worried, and nature is not interested in you particularly. Nature goes on working – someday it will happen, but you cannot ask why, because nature is silent.

If you are worried about why it has not happened yet, then you have to do something. If worry has entered you, then you have to do something. Only your doing will help you to come to a point where enlightenment can happen. Nature’s ways are very patient, slow. There is no hurry, because for nature there is no limit to time. It is eternal. There is no beginning and no end. But man has come to a point: he has become conscious; he has started asking.

A tree never asks – even the Bodhi tree under which Buddha became enlightened. The tree will never ask, ‘Why have I not become enlightened? – because I have also been existing for as many millions of years as you have existed, Gautam. Why?’ The tree will never ask. The tree is absolutely natural. The questioning makes man unnatural. The unnatural has entered in you: you have started questioning why – why it has not happened yet.

This questioning is good, because it can lead you to a decisive moment where you can start working upon yourself. And man cannot leave it to nature, because man has become conscious. You cannot leave it to nature now. That’s why man has created religions. No animal has any religion. There is no need: they are not asking; they are not in a hurry. In nature everything is unhurried – moving so slowly as if not moving at all; continuously repeating the same pattern, infinitely repeating the same circle.

Man has become conscious. Man has become conscious of time, and the moment you become conscious of time, you are thrown out of eternity. Then you are in a hurry. So as man’s consciousness evolves more, he is more hurried, he becomes more and more time conscious. Go to a primitive society: they are not time conscious. The more civilized a society, the more time conscious. A primitive society is nearer nature: unhurried, it moves slowly. Just as nature moves, it moves. The more you become civilized, the more you become conscious of time. Really, time can be the criterion: how civilized a society is can be known by how time conscious it is. Then you are in a hurry, then you cannot wait, then you cannot leave it to nature. You have to take it in your own hands.

And man can take it in his own hands: he can do something and the process can be finished sooner. It can even be finished in a single moment. All that millions of years have not done, have not been able to do, you can do in a single moment. In that single moment you can become so intense that millions of years and millions of lives are traveled simultaneously.

That’s possible – because it is possible you are worried. Your worry is a symptom that something which is possible you are not making actual – that is the worry, that is the human dilemma. You can do it and you are not doing it – that creates an inner worry, anguish. When you cannot do it the question never arises, there is no worry. The worry shows that it is possible now that you can jump – many lives which are unnecessary you can just by-pass – and you are not by-passing. You have become conscious, and you have come above nature.

Consciousness is a new phenomenon. You have come above nature and now you can consciously evolve. Conscious evolution is revolution. You can do something about it. You are not just a victim, not just a puppet. You can take your destiny in your hands. That is possible, and because it is possible and you are not doing anything, it creates inner anxiety. And the more you become aware that this is possible, the more the anxiety will be felt.

A Buddha is very worried; you are not so worried. Buddha was very worried, in deep anguish, suffering. Unless he attained, he would live in hell, because he was perfectly aware that something was absolutely possible, was just at hand, just by the corner, and he felt, ‘Still I am missing it. If I just stretch my hand it will happen – and my hand is paralyzed. Just a step and I will be out of it – and I cannot take that step. I am afraid of taking a jump.’

When you are near the goal, and you can feel it and you can see it and still you go on missing, then you feel anguish. When you are very far away and you cannot feel it, you cannot see it, you are not even aware that there is a goal, you are perfectly unaware of any destiny, then there is no anxiety. Animals are not in anguish. They appear happy – happier then man. What is the reason? Trees are even more happy than animals. They are perfectly unaware of what can happen, of what is possible, of what is just near at hand. They are blissfully unaware. There is no anxiety. They drift. Man becomes anxious, and the greater a man, the more anxiety will be there.

If you simply live, you are living an animal existence. Religious anguish arises the moment you become aware that something is possible – The seed is there and I have to do something. I have to do something and the seed will sprout. The flowers are not very far away, and I can reap this crop’ – but still nothing is happening. A very impotent state is felt.

That was the Buddha’s condition before he became a Buddha. He was just on the verge of committing suicide. You will have to pass through that. And you cannot leave it to nature; you have to do something about it – and you can do. And the goal is not very far.

So don’t be depressed if you feel anxiety. If you feel a very tense anguish within you, a suffering, agony, don’t feel depressed about it – that’s a good sign. That shows you are becoming more and more aware of that which is possible, and now you will never be at ease unless it becomes actual.

Man cannot leave it to nature because man has become conscious. Only a very minor part of his being is conscious, but that changes everything. And unless your total being becomes conscious, you cannot know again the simple happiness of the animal or of the trees. There is only one way to know it now: to become more and more alert, more and more aware, and more and more conscious. You cannot regress. There is no process for going back; no one can go back. You can either remain where you are and suffer, or you have to go forward and go beyond suffering. You cannot go back.

Total unconsciousness is blissful, total consciousness is blissful – and you are in between. A part of you has become conscious, and the major part of you is still unconscious. You are divided. You have become two, you are not one. The integration is lost. Animals are integrated and then saints are integrated. Man is disintegrated: a part remains animal and a part has become saintly. There is a struggle, conflict, and whatsoever you do you can never do with one heart.

So there are two ways. One is just to deceive yourself – that is to become totally unconscious again. You can take drugs, you can take alcohol, you can take intoxicants – you fall back to the animal world. You drug the part that has become conscious; you become totally unconscious. But this is a temporary deception; you will arise again. The effect of the chemical will be lost and your consciousness will become conscious again. The part which you have forcibly suppressed with alcohol or drugs or something else will arise again, and then you will feel more suffering, because then you can compare. You will feel more suffering.

You can go on drugging yourself. There are many methods – not only chemical. There are religious methods. You can use a japa, a mantra: you can chant it and create an intoxicating effect. You can do many things which can make you unconscious again, but that is going to be temporary, you will have to come out – and you will come out with a deeper suffering with you, because then you will be able to compare. If in unconsciousness this is possible, what will be possible in total consciousness? You will become more hungry for it, you will feel more starved.

Remember one thing: totality is bliss. If you are unconscious totally then too it is bliss, but you are not aware of it. Animals are happy but they are not aware of their happiness. So it is futile. It is just like when you are asleep you are happy, and whenever you are awake you are unhappy. Totality is bliss.

You can be total in consciousness also. Then there will be bliss and you will be perfectly aware of it. This is possible through sadhana, through methods, through practicing techniques which increase your consciousness. You are not enlightened because you have not done anything for it, but you have become aware that you are not enlightened. This has been done by nature; in millions of years nature has made you aware.

You may not be aware of the fact that man has stopped growing as far as body is concerned. We have skeletons that are millions of years old, but there is no visible change; they are similar to our skeletons. So for millions of years there has been no growth in the body, it has remained the same. Even the brain has not grown; it has remained the same. As far as body is concerned, evolution has done whatsoever could have been done. In a sense, man is now responsible for his own growth. And the growth is not going to be of the physical; the growth is going to be of the spiritual.

The skeleton of a Buddha and your skeleton are not basically different, but you and Buddha are absolutely different. Evolution is working horizontally; methods, techniques, religions, they work vertically. Your body has stopped: it has come to a point, an omega point. Now there is no further growth for it. Horizontally, evolution has stopped; now a vertical evolution starts. Now, wherever you are, you have to take a jump vertically. That vertical evolution will be of consciousness, not of body. And you are responsible for it.

You cannot ask nature why, but nature can ask you why you are not enlightened yet, because everything is provided now. Your body has all that which is needed; you have a Buddha’s body. Exactly whatsoever is needed for the buddha to happen to you, you have got. Only a new arrangement, a new synthesis of all the elements that are given, and the buddha will happen to you. Nature can ask you why you are not enlightened yet, because nature has provided you with everything.

And nature asking you will not be irrelevant, but you asking nature is absurd. You cannot be allowed to ask. Now you are aware and you can do something. All the elements are given to you. The hydrogen is there, the oxygen is there, the electricity is there; you have to just make certain efforts and experiments and the water will happen.

-Osho

From The Book of Secrets, Discourse #58, Q2

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

Here you can listen to the discourse excerpt Take Your Destiny in Your Hands.

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Enlightenment is the Key – Osho

Enlightenment is certainly the key, but almost all the traditions are against it – and there is a reason why they are against it. The most fundamental reason is that if enlightenment is a reality, God becomes an unreality. If your own illumination is the ultimate, then nothing can be above it. Then man’s own consciousness becomes the highest reality.

Religions and traditions believing in God cannot allow enlightenment. It goes against all their fictions. Their fictions can exist only in the darkness, not in the light. To keep their fictions alive, to keep their dreams real, they don’t allow human beings to be awake. You don’t hear of Christian mystics as enlightened, you don’t hear of Jewish mystics as awakened. In fact, enlightenment is the alternative of God.

All that belongs to the ritualistic religions is endangered by enlightenment, because enlightenment has no ritual, it has no prayer, it has no scriptures. It so totally believes in you, its respect for humanity is so absolute and irrevocable … It is natural that all the priests are going to be against it, because the whole profession of the priests depends on fictions, and enlightenment destroys fictions.

All theologies are fabrications of the mind, and enlightenment is a transcendence going beyond the mind. All that belongs to the mind is a nightmare. Where do your gods exist?

Where is your heaven, your hell? Where are your angels and your ghosts? They all constitute the entity called the mind.

Enlightenment is the greatest revolution you can conceive of because it destroys all fictions, all rituals, all gods, all traditions, all scriptures. It leaves you with only the essential consciousness of your own being. Its trust in consciousness is so total that there is no need of anything else.

It has not been said as clearly as I am putting it … I want to make it absolutely clear that the very idea of enlightenment is against all religions. Or, in other words, the only authentic religion is that of enlightenment. All other religions are part of the marketplace; they are businesses exploiting human helplessness, exploiting human weakness, exploiting human limitations.

Religions have done so much harm to man that it is unparalleled. Nothing else has been so dangerous. In every possible way they have been preventing man from even hearing the word ‘enlightenment’. You should not become aware that raising your hands to the sky is stupid—there is no one to answer your prayers, no prayer has ever been answered. All your gods are your own creations. You sculpt them, and you never think about it – that you go on worshipping things which you have created. The Christian Bible says, “God created man in his own image.” The truth is just the contrary: man has created God in his own image. And then—the ultimate foolishness—you worship your own image. In fact, if you were a little intelligent, you could just purchase a mirror and worship.

All your gods are nothing but your own reflections. There is no need to go to a temple or to a church; you can just keep a small mirror. Perhaps ladies are very intelligent about it—they go on looking again and again in the mirror, they believe in the mirror.

But all your gods are the same, all your rituals are created by crafty priests. None of your scriptures are even first-rate literature; they are very third-class contributions. But just because they are holy … Who makes them holy? There are people who have their vested interests … It is a long chain from God to the prophets, to the messiahs, to the holy scripture, to the church. But the only reality in this whole long line of fictions is the priest, and his whole effort through the ages has been to exploit you. And not only to exploit—exploitation is possible only if certain conditions are fulfilled: you have to be made to feel guilty.

Strange ways have been invented to make you feel guilty. The Hindus say that you are suffering, in misery, not because of your stupidities, not because of your unconsciousness, not because of your unmeditativeness, not because you have made no effort to become enlightened, but because of the evil acts you have done in millions of past lives. Now you cannot undo them; there is no way backwards. That burden you have to carry, and under that burden you lose all your dignity, all your pride. All that you can do is pray to God to help you, to save you.

Christians—because they don’t have the idea of many, many lives, but only one life – cannot use the same strategy. They have found their own strategy: the Hindu is suffering because of millions of past lives; the Christian is suffering because Adam and Eve, faraway, back in the very beginning, disobeyed God. The idea is so far-fetched … In what way can I be responsible if Adam disobeyed God?

But Christianity goes on insisting, and Christianity means half of humanity, that you were born in sin because your forefathers, Adam and Eve, disobeyed God. You are born of sinners; hence, you are miserable. And you will remain miserable unless you repent and unless you are forgiven. Only the son of God, Jesus, can save you. He is going to plead on your behalf; he is going to be your advocate. You have just to believe in him and at the last Day of Judgment he will choose the people who believe in him, and will ask God to forgive them. The remainder of humanity is going to fall into eternal hell.

These are great strategies to bring people into the fold of Christianity … because that is the only way to save your future; otherwise there is no hope. Every religion has in some way taken away your beauty, your greatness, has destroyed the very idea that you have any worth, any meaning, any significance, that you have any potential.

Enlightenment is a rebellion against all traditions, against all priests, against all religions, because it declares that there is nothing higher than man’s consciousness. And man is not suffering because some stupid man in the past disobeyed a fictitious God; man is not suffering because of millions of lives of evil acts. Man is suffering for the simple reason that he does not know himself. His ignorance about himself is the only cause of his suffering, misery, torture.

Enlightenment brings everything to a very simple and scientific conclusion. It pinpoints that all that you need is to learn the art of awareness.

Ta Hui is right to say that enlightenment is the key, the only key which opens all the realities and all the blessings and all the potentials which have been hidden within you. You are a seed: enlightenment is nothing but finding the right soil and waiting for the spring to come.

Enlightenment is such a radical standpoint. It is not another religion. It is the only religion. All other religions are pseudo.

-Osho

From The Great Zen Master Ta Hui, Discourse #34

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Your Identification Breaks in the Fifth Body, Now You will be the Master – Osho

On which plane does the meditator reach the no-thought state? Are thoughts possible without identifying the consciousness with objects or is identity essential for thought?

The perfect no-thought state is attained in the fifth body but small glimpses begin from the fourth body. Thoughts continue in the fourth body but one begins to observe the gaps between two thoughts. Before the fourth there are thoughts and thoughts and only thoughts; we do not see the gap between the thoughts. In the fourth the intervals begin to appear and the emphasis changes. If you have observed gestalt images you will be able to understand this. Suppose there is a picture of a flight of steps: it can be so drawn that if you look attentively you will observe the steps going up; then if you look again you will see the steps coming down. But the most interesting part is that you cannot observe the steps going up and down simultaneously. You can see only one of the two. When you observe the second picture the first picture will have vanished.

We can make a picture in which two faces can be seen facing each other, complete with nose, eyes and beard. First it will appear as if two men are facing each other. Now paint the faces black leaving the intervening space white. Now you will say that there is a flower pot in this intervening space, and the nose and eyes become the outlines of the pot. You will not be able to see the pot and the two faces at one time. When you see the two faces the pot will not be seen; when the pot is observed the faces will vanish. No matter how hard you try to see them all together the gestalt will change its emphasis. When your emphasis shifts to the faces the pot will vanish; when the emphasis is on the pot the faces will vanish.

Up to the third body the gestalt of our mind has its emphasis on thought. Rama comes, so Rama is visible and his coming is visible. The empty space between Rama and his coming, or the empty space before Rama’s coming and after Rama’s going, is not visible to us. The emphasis is on Rama’s coming; the intervening space is not observed. The change starts from the fourth body. All of a sudden it will strike you that Rama’s coming is no longer very important. When Rama was not coming there was the empty space; when Rama has gone there is the empty space. The empty space begins to come within the focus of your mind: faces disappear; the pot becomes visible. And when your attention is on the empty space you cannot think.

You can do only one of the following two things: as long as you see thoughts you will think, but when you see the empty space you will be empty within. However, this will keep alternating in the fourth body. Sometimes you will see the two faces and sometimes the pot: that is, sometimes you will see thoughts and sometimes the gap. Silence will come and so will thoughts.

The difference between silence and emptiness is only this: silence means thoughts have not yet ended, but the emphasis is changed. The consciousness has shifted from thought and takes pleasure in silence, but thought still remains. It is only that the consciousness has shifted: the attention has shifted from thoughts. Then the attention is on silence. But thought returns sometimes – and when it manages to draw your attention, again silence is lost and thought begins.

In the last moments of the fourth body the mind will keep alternating between the two. On the fifth plane all thoughts will be lost and only silence will remain. This is not the ultimate silence, because this silence exists in comparison to thought and speech. Silence means not speaking; emptiness means a state where there is neither silence nor speech. Neither the faces remain nor the flower pot; only the blank paper. Now if you are asked whether the faces are there or the flower pot, you will say neither.

The state of no-thought occurs in its totality in the fifth body. At the fourth we get glimpses of this state; it will be observed off and on between two thoughts. At the fifth the no-thought state will become evident and thoughts will disappear.

Now the second part of your question is, “Is identification necessary for the formation of thoughts, or can thoughts occur without any identification?” Up to the third body identification and thought come simultaneously. There is your identification and there is the coming of thought: there is no interval between the two. Your thoughts and you are one – not two. Now when you are angry it is wrong to say that you are angry. It would be more correct to say that you have become anger, because in order to be angry it should also be possible for you not to be angry.

For instance, I say, “I am moving my hand.” Then suppose you say, “Now stop your hand,” and I say, “That is not possible; the hands keep moving” – then you may well question what I mean when I say, “I am moving my hand.” I should say, “The hand is moving,” because if I am moving the hand I should be able to stop it. If I cannot stop my hand I cannot claim to be its owner. It has no meaning. Because you cannot stop your thoughts, your identification with them is complete up to the third body. Up to there you are thought.

So up to the third body, by hitting someone’s thoughts we are hitting the person himself. If you tell such a person, “What you say is wrong,” he will never feel that what he says is wrong; he will feel he is wrong. Quarrels and fights take place not because of a statement but because of the ‘I’ – because there is complete identification. To attack your thoughts is to attack you. Even if you say, “It is all right if you do not agree with my way of thinking,” within you will feel that you have been opposed. Many times it happens that the idea in question is left aside and we begin to fight for it merely because we put forth the view and not for any other reason. You support it merely because you have put it forth as your viewpoint – because you have declared it as your scripture, your principle, your argument.

Until the third body there is no distance between you and your thoughts. You are the thought. In the fourth wavering begins. You will begin to get glimpses of the fact that you are something apart and your thoughts are something apart. But so far you are unable to stop your thoughts, because deep within the roots the association still exists. Above on the branches you feel the difference. You sit on one branch and the thoughts on the other and you see they are not you. But deep within you and thoughts are one. Therefore, it seems that thoughts are separate, and it also seems that if my association with them is broken thoughts will stop. But they do not stop. At some deeper level the association with thoughts will continue.

Changes begin to take place on the fourth plane. You begin to get a vague notion of thoughts being different and you being different. You still cannot proclaim this, however, and the thought process is still mechanical. You cannot stop your thoughts, nor can you bring them about. If I can say to you, “Stop anger and show that you are the master,” it can also be said, “Bring about anger and prove that you are the master.” You will ask, “How can this be done? We cannot bring about anger.” The moment you can you are its master. Then you can stop it at any moment. When you are the master the process of bringing on anger and stopping it are both in your hands. If you can bring on anger you can stop it also.

It is also interesting to note that stopping it is a little difficult, but bringing it on is easier. So if you want to be the master first begin by bringing on anger, because this is easier. In the situation of bringing it on you are tranquil, but in the situation of having to stop it you are already angry and so you are not even aware of yourself. Then how will you stop it? Therefore, it is always easier to start the experiment by bringing on anger rather than by stopping it. For instance, you begin to laugh but then you find that you cannot stop laughing; it is difficult. But if you are not laughing and you want to bring on laughter you can do it in a minute or two. Then you will know the secret of laughter – from where it comes and how – and then you will know the secret of stopping it also, and it can be stopped.

At the fourth plane you will begin to see that you are separate and thoughts are separate; that you are not your thoughts. Therefore, whenever the no-thought state occurs – as I said before – the witness also comes, and wherever there are thoughts the witness will be lost. In the intervals between thoughts – that is, in the gaps between thoughts – you will realize your separate identity from the thoughts. Then there is no association between you and the thoughts. But even then you will be a helpless observer. You will not be able to do much, though all efforts are to be made in the fourth body only.

So I have defined two possibilities of the fourth body – one that is natural and the other that is obtained through meditations. You will be alternating between these two. The first possibility is thought and the second is understanding. The moment you attain the second potential of the fourth body – vivek, or understanding – the fourth body will drop as well as the identification of consciousness with mind. When you attain the fifth body two things will drop: the fourth body and this identification.

In the fifth body you can bring on thoughts or not bring them on, as you wish. For the first time thoughts will be a means and will not depend on identification. If you wish to bring on anger you can bring on anger; if you wish to bring on love you can do so. If you do not wish to bring on anything you are at liberty not to do so. If you wish to stop anger that is half-formed you can order it to stop. Whatever thought you want to bring will come to you, and that which you do not wish to bring will not have any power to invade your mind.

There are many such instances in the life of Gurdjieff. People considered him a peculiar man. If two people were sitting before him, he would look toward one with the utmost anger and toward the other with the utmost love. So quickly would he change his expression that the two would carry away different reports about him. Though both had met him together, one would say, “He looks like a dangerous man,” while the other would say, “How full of love he is.” This is very easy on the fifth plane. Gurdjieff was beyond the understanding of people around him. He could instantly bring any kind of expression to his face. There was no difficulty for him in this, but there was difficulty for others.

The reason behind this is that in the fifth body you are the master of yourself; you can bring about any feeling you please. Then anger, love, hatred, forgiveness, all your thoughts, become mere play things; therefore, you can relax when you please. To relax after play is very easy but to relax from life is difficult. If I am only playing at anger I will not sit in anger after you leave the room.

If I am playing the game of talking I will no longer be talking after you go. But if talking is my life-breath, then I shall keep on talking even after you leave. Even if nobody listens, I will listen. I will keep on talking because that is my very life; it is not a play after which I can relax. It is my very life, it has taken hold of me. So such a man will talk even at night. In dreams also he will gather a crowd and speak. In dreams also he will quarrel, he will fight and do all that he has been doing in the daytime. He will keep doing this all the twenty-four hours, because that is his life; that is his very existence.

Your identification breaks in the fifth body. Then for the first time you are at peace, you are empty, by your own free will. But when the need arises you think also. So in the fifth body, for the first time you will be putting your power of thinking to use. It would be better to say that before the fifth body thoughts make use of you; after the fifth you make use of thoughts. Before that it is not correct to say, “I think.” In the fifth body you also come to know that your thoughts are not your own: thoughts of people around you also enter your mind. However, you are not even aware that the thoughts you think to be your own could be someone else’s.

A Hitler is born and the whole of Germany is permeated with his thoughts – but each German feels it to be his own thought. A very dynamic person diffuses his thoughts into the minds of others and they become echoes of the same. This dynamism is as serious as it is deep.

For example, it is two thousand years since Jesus died. The thought waves that he left in the world still grasp the minds of Christians who think that these are their own thoughts. The same is the case with Mahavira, Buddha, Krishna and others. Any kind of dynamic person’s thoughts, whether they are of a good person or an evil one, can catch the hold of the human mind.  The hold of Tamerlane and Genghis Khan upon our minds has not yet been released, nor has the hold of Krishna and Rama. Their thought waves move forever around us, and you are able to catch those thought waves that are conducive to your particular state of mind.

It always happens that a man who is very good in the morning becomes evil by noon. In the morning he moves in the waves of Rama; in the afternoon he may be caught by the waves of Genghis Khan. Receptivity and time cause the difference. The beggar always comes to beg in the morning, because the effect of evil vibrations is at the minimum at the time of the rising sun. As the day progresses and as the sun gets tired of its long journey in the skies the influence gains strength, so the beggar has no hope of charity from others in the evening. If a beggar asks a man early in the morning to give two rupees he will not be able to refuse right away; as the day progresses it is more difficult to say yes to the beggar. By evening the man is tired with the day’s work so now he is fully prepared to refuse. The condition of his mind is quite different now; so also is the entire atmosphere of his surroundings. So the thoughts we feel to be our own also do not belong to us.

This you will experience only in the fifth body, and you will be surprised to see the way thoughts come and go. The thought comes, then it goes; it catches hold of you, then it leaves you alone. There are a thousand kinds of thoughts – and very contradictory ones too; therefore, there is confusion in our minds. Every single person is confused. If thoughts were entirely yours there would be no question of confusion. Your one hand catches hold of Genghis Khan and the other catches hold of Krishna, so there is bound to be confusion. Both of these sets of thought waves lie in wait for you, and as soon as you show your readiness they enter within. They are present all around you.

All this you will come to know when your identification with thoughts breaks completely. The biggest change will be that until this time you will have thoughts, but now you will have thinking. There is a difference between the two. Thoughts are atomic: they come and go and they are always alien. To say that thoughts are always alien is quite correct. Thinking is ours, but thoughts are alien. This thinking will start within you after the fifth body. Then you will be able to think; you will no longer be merely collecting the thoughts of others. Therefore, the thinking of the fifth body is never a burden upon you, because it is your own. This thinking that is born in the fifth body may be called wisdom or understanding or whatever you like to call it.

At the fifth plane you have your own intuition, your own understanding, your own intelligence. At the fifth the influence of all outside thoughts will end, and in this sense you will be the master of yourself; you will attain your being; you will become your self. Now you will have your own thoughts, your own power of thinking, your own eyes and your own vision. After this only what you wish will come to you; what you do not wish will never come near you. You can think just what you want to think; other thoughts cannot invade you. Now you will be the master. Here the question of identification does not arise.

In the sixth body thinking is also not required. Thoughts are necessary up to the fourth body; thinking and wisdom are necessary in the fifth. On the sixth plane even these end, because there they are not required at all. You become cosmic; you become one with the Brahman. Now there is no other.

In fact, all thoughts are always related to the other. The thoughts before the fourth body are unconscious links with others. The thoughts of the fifth body are conscious links but they are still related to others. After all, why are thoughts necessary? They are required only to establish a relationship with others. Until the fourth they are unconscious links; at the fifth they are conscious links. But at the sixth no “other” remains for establishing links. All relatedness is finished; only the cosmic remains. I and thou are now one. Now there is no place, no reason for thought to exist.

The sixth is the Brahman – the cosmic reality, where there are no thoughts. In the Brahman there are no thoughts; therefore, it can be said that in the Brahman there is knowing. Actually, the thoughts which exist up to the fourth body are unconscious thoughts; they contain a deep ignorance. It shows that we need thoughts to fight with this self-ignorance. At the fifth there is knowing of the self within, but we are still ignorant about that which is other to us; the other is still there for us. Therefore, there is the need to think in the fifth body. At the sixth there is no inside or outside, there is no I or thou, there is no this or that. Now there is no distance to justify thoughts. Now what is, is. Therefore, at the sixth there is only knowing, not thoughts.

At the seventh knowing also does not exist, because he who knew is no more and that which could be known is no more. So even knowing is not on the seventh plane. The seventh plane is not knowing-less, but beyond knowing. If you like you can call it a state of ignorance also. That is why it is always the case that a man of ultimate consciousness and an absolutely ignorant person seem identical – because their behavior is often similar. This is why there is always a great similarity between a small child and an old man who has attained enlightenment: they are not actually the same but superficially they seem alike. Sometimes an enlightened sage acts in a childlike way; sometimes in the behavior of a child we get a glimpse of saintliness. Sometimes an enlightened one looks like an absolutely ignorant person, an absolute fool, and it would seem that no one could be as foolish as he. But the sage has gone beyond knowledge and the child is still below knowledge. The similarity lies in the fact that they both are outside of knowledge.

-Osho

From In Search of the Miraculous, Discourse #20, Q3

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Related post: Mysteries of the Seven Bodies

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Enlightenment is Not Superhuman – Osho

In discourse I followed past words, disregarding feelings, into air and the pattern of my being.  Is it really this simple? Now moving into mysterious depths, no universal visions – just me, here amongst the birds, the trees, the people – In all its suchness. No searching, no longing, just living me… I know this to be true, but I also need your answer. In this context, then what is enlightenment?

Dhyan Sarvam, the question that you have asked is not a question, but an expression of what you are feeling. What you are feeling is, “no universal visions – just me, here amongst the birds, the trees, the people – in all its suchness. No searching, no longing, just living me… I know this to be true, but I also need your answer.” Then your knowing is not complete. Your knowing has hidden behind it a doubt; otherwise there is no need of any answer. If you know, then what is the need of my answer?

But I can understand your problem – on the one hand you know the beauty of this moment, the blissfulness of here-now, and yet there is a suspicion underground raising the question, “Is it really true? Is it all? Or is there something more?” And this doubt is arising because of a simple thing. If you had looked at your question a little more deeply, you would have found, “No universal visions – just me.” This “me” is the source of your doubt. If you had said, “No universal visions, no me, here amongst the birds, the trees, the people – in all its suchness. No searching, no longing, just living me….” That “me” is the block. In suchness there is no “me,” only a pure isness – no “I,” no “thou.” And when there is no searching, no longing, the ego cannot exist even for a split second. The searching, the longing, the desiring – these are the very heartbeats of the ego.

You say, “I know this to be true.” You do not know, your mind is deceiving you, because you are still there – in knowing you cannot be. Knowing drowns the “I” and then there is a certainty, “This is true.” But wherever you find the “I” lingering in some way, beware of it. Its deception is going too far.

You are asking, “In this context, what is enlightenment?” In this context there is no enlightenment. But if the “I” and the “me” have also dissolved in the suchness of things, in the isness of existence, then this would have been the enlightenment. Just a little more awareness… you are very close to it. But don’t take it for granted that you have arrived. The old mind tries to the very end; when you are entering the boundaries of enlightenment, then too, it goes on trying with all its power to hold you back.

The experience is beautiful, but your ego is making it not reach to its ultimate climax. You drop the “me,” you drop the “I”, and there will be no need to answer there will be no need for recognition – you will know. But you will not be there, only the knowing will be there, that, “This is it.”

Everybody has to remember about the old mind. It is such a long habit; for many, many lives you have remained attached to it. So it is not surprising that when you are departing from it, it clings to you – perhaps just the last hug, but the hug can go on being prolonged. […]

You were very close. You just missed by inches, not even miles. When you again feel this – and you will feel this…. It is a great achievement to feel the pure space of no searching, no longing, no universal visions, to feel only the birds singing in the trees, the people all around. But you are missing; you are no more there. Just gather courage not to be, and this very experience becomes enlightenment.

Enlightenment is not something superhuman; it is your basic right. But your ego goes on postponing it, goes on bringing itself between you and your enlightenment. And in such subtle ways that unless you are very alert, you are going to be deceived. When you felt no searching, no longing, you could have felt just life, just living. Why just “living me”? Why confine living to a small prison of “me”?

Feel the heartbeat of the whole universe and let your own separation be dissolved into it. Then you would have said, “The knowing has happened; this is it and there is no other enlightenment.” The absence of the ego and the presence of universal consciousness is what enlightenment means.

-Osho

From The Razor’s Edge, Discourse #18

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

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

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No Time Left for Any Device – Osho

In the last few weeks you have been talking a lot about the world running fast towards a dead end, without showing any more hope that things will ever change. On the other hand, up to one month ago, you talked on the possibility that the presence of two hundred enlightened people, or even one, could save the world. Why this shift of emphasis? Did you give up on the other possibility? Did something happen within the last few weeks that made your vision change?

Chidananda, it is true that I have been talking a lot about the world running fast towards a dead end. The reason is, factually it is running towards an end. But it was running towards its end before, too. Now I want it to be absolutely emphasized on your consciousness, so that you stop postponing your own transformation. Man’s mind is so stupid that if there is a little possibility to postpone, then he will postpone for tomorrow – unless he comes to a dead-end street where there is no way to go forward and he has to take an absolute about-turn.

But things in the world are not visible to you. You may go on sleeping and the world may die. It is urgent that you take it seriously that the world may not be there tomorrow. You don’t have time to waste for anything else other than your own awakening.

I still know if there are two hundred enlightened people in the world, the world can be saved; but I have never told you that just one enlightened man can save the world. It is a heavy load. One single enlightened man cannot carry it; two hundred is the minimum. But from where to bring those two hundred people? They have to be born amongst you – YOU have to become those two hundred people. And your growth is so slow, there is every fear that before you become enlightened the world will be gone.

You are not putting your total energy into meditation, into awareness. It is one of the things that you are doing, amongst many; and it is not even the first priority of your life. I want it to become your first priority. The only way is that I should emphasize, deeply into your consciousness, that the world is going to end soon.

And if you are not awakened before its end, you will be lost in a long journey, because evolution will start from the very beginning on some other planet. On this planet it took four billion years for man to arrive. His life began in the ocean as a fish. On another planet, if this planet is destroyed, life will continue, but it will have to begin from the very beginning – and after four billion years you may be again a human being. It is a great risk to take.

Nothing has changed in the world; everything is going exactly in the direction of death – a little faster of course – and the moment of total annihilation is coming very close. It all depends on what your priorities are. If being awakened has become your priority, and you are ready to sacrifice everything for it, then there is hope.[…]

I have been telling you that two hundred enlightened people can save the world. Existence is very generous; it cannot destroy two hundred awakened people, who have reached to the highest peak of consciousness – which has taken four billion years of evolution. But you have to become those two hundred people! To wake you up, I have been insisting that the end is very close. And this time it is not a parable.

Jesus used it as a device, that the end of the world is very close and the last judgment day is very close. His disciples asked him at the time of his departure – before the enemies got hold of him and when it was certain that he would be crucified the next day, their last question was, “When will we be seeing you again?” He said, “In this very life, because the end of the world is very close – but do what I have told you.”

And even Christians don’t know what he has told them. The last night before he was caught they were in the mountains and he told his disciples, “This may be the last night we are together, and I am going to do my prayer. While I am praying behind the bush you should remain awake. It is absolutely essential, to support my prayer, that you are awake. Don’t fall asleep.”

In the middle of his prayer he came back – and almost all were fast asleep. He woke them up and said, “Have you not heard me? I had told you, you have to remain awake. Can’t you remain awake just one night? – because I will not be here with you again. Even my death tomorrow cannot help you to remain awake?” They were very sorry. They said they would try, and he went again. This went on four, five times – he would come back and they would all be fast asleep.

According to me this was his last teaching: to remain awake. But Christianity has completely forgotten about it. And I have not seen a single commentary by Christians on the implications of why Jesus was so insistently saying, “Be awake!” He was trying his hardest because once he was gone, there was every possibility they would all fall asleep, just as the whole of humanity is asleep, and they would start doing in their dreams things that are not t be done. But things that are not to be done can be prevented only when you are aware, alert.

His last teaching was awareness, but the disciples failed him – not only those twelve intimate disciples failed him, for two thousand years all his disciples have failed him. The very word “awareness” has disappeared from the Christian idea of transforming human beings. Jesus was continually saying, “The end is very close.” That was a device because if you feel that there is enough time, why not sleep a little more? What is the hurry? But if there is no time left at all, perhaps the shock of it may wake you up.

What was only a device to Jesus, to me is not a device. It is a reality. The world is going to end.

I have been giving you hope, because I have to do two things: on the one hand I have to make it clear to you that the world is coming to its final suicide; and on the other hand, I have to give you the hope that still there is a possibility at least for you to become awakened.

Your awakening is of tremendous importance; it has never been so important before – neither with Jesus nor with Gautam Buddha – because there was enough time. Time has run out. We are at the far end of time.

To make you aware of the reality – so that you can make some effort to remain awake, to make some effort to be more conscious and not to get lost in trivia – is absolutely necessary. That’s why my insistence will go on growing, because every day the end is approaching closer.

Man is so asleep he is almost in a coma, and all his actions are arising out of this state of coma, otherwise, there is no necessity for the world to end. But we are carrying nuclear weapons within our souls. The end is going to come because of our own ignorance, our own deep sleep. […]

At least you have to come out of it – and you need a constant hitting on your head to remind you that the times are no longer ordinary. And there have never been, in the whole history of man, such dangerous moments as those through which we are passing. It is no time for quarreling, arguing about theological matters; it is not intelligent to console yourself that some miracle will happen and the world war will be postponed. It is not only the world war – the attack is multidimensional.

The ecology of the earth is breaking down. […]

The population of the world is growing so fast that just the growth of population will be enough to kill half of humanity out of hunger and thirst.[…]

These are the multi-dimensional ways that death is approaching the earth.

Because we have cut so many forests, a thick layer of carbon dioxide has gathered on top of our atmosphere, miles away from the earth, where the air ends. The layer is so thick that it has already increased the temperature more than it has ever been on the earth; and that rise of temperature is melting the ice of the north and south poles. If that ice goes on melting – and there is no way to prevent it – all the oceans of the world will rise four feet higher. And all your big cities are ports; they will be flooded with water, will become unlivable.

If this carbon dioxide becomes a little thicker, then the Himalayas and the Alps, which have eternal snow which has never melted, will start melting. The Himalayas alone have so much ice that if it melts completely, it will raise all the oceans of the world forty feet higher. All your cities will be drowned, and this is not a flood that is going to recede.

One of the most dangerous things happening is that carbon dioxide is going to accumulate more and more. The trees go on inhaling carbon dioxide. If you cut the trees you are cutting two things: the supply of oxygen for your life, and the place for carbon dioxide to be absorbed. It is a double-edged sword. […]

So when I say the end is not very far away, it is not like when Jesus says it – just a device. By the end of this century, you will see all these dimensions bringing death to you. It has to be emphasized: unless you become absolutely clear about death, you are not going to concentrate your whole energy on transforming your being.

People change with difficulty; they find it easier to remain as they are – just like stones,  like rocks. Change means a determined effort, a commitment to transform your energies, to take your being in an absolutely serious manner – it has not to be wasted in stupid things. […]

Being alert means you have to stop being robots. Change your routines, move more consciously; let every act become an object of awareness. Then even these few years that are left are enough – more than enough. If you put your total energy into transformation, the destruction of the earth will not be your destruction. If you can die consciously, you have found the key to a higher life, to an eternal life, to a divine life.

-Osho

From The Hidden Splendor, Discourse #14

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 Cloud Which Showers Virtue – Osho

One who is able to maintain a constant state of desirelessness, even towards the most exalted states of enlightenment, and is able to exercise the highest kind of discrimination, enters the state known as ‘the cloud which showers virtue’.

One who is able to maintain a constant state of desirelessness even towards the most exalted states of enlightenment

Patanjali calls it paravairagya: the ultimate renunciation. You have renounced the world: you have renounced greed, you have renounced money, you have renounced power; you have renounced everything of the outside. You have even renounced your body, you have even renounced your mind, but the last renunciation is the kaivalya renunciation of kaivalya itself, of moksha itself, of nirvana itself. Now you renounce even the idea of liberation, because that too is a desire. And desire, whatsoever its object, is the same. You desire money, I desire moksha. Of course, my object is better than your object, but still my desire is the same as yours. Desire says, “I am not content as I am. More money is needed; then I will be contented. More liberation is needed; then I will be contented.” The quality of desire is the same; the problem of desire is the same. The problem is that the future is needed: “As I am, it is not enough; something more is needed. Whatsoever has happened to me is not enough. Something still has to happen to me; only then can I be happy.” This is the nature of desire: you need more money, somebody needs a bigger house, somebody thinks of more power, politics, somebody thinks of a better wife or a better husband, somebody thinks of more education, more knowledge, somebody thinks of more miraculous powers, but it makes no difference. Desire is desire, and desirelessness is needed.

Now the paradox: if you are absolutely desireless – and in absolute desirelessness, the desire of moksha is included – a moment comes when you don’t desire even moksha, you don’t desire even God. You simply don’t desire; you are, and there is no desire. This is the state of desirelessness. Moksha happens in this state. Moksha cannot be desired, by its very nature, because it comes only in desirelessness. Liberation cannot be desired. It cannot become a motive because it happens only when all motives have disappeared. You cannot make God an object of your desire because the desiring mind remains ungodly. The desiring mind remains unholy; the desiring mind remains worldly. When there is no desire, not even the desire for God, suddenly He has always been there. Your eyes open and you recognize Him.

Desires function as barriers. And the last desire, the most subtle desire, is the desire to be liberated. The last, subtle desire is the desire to be desireless. 

One who is able to maintain a constant state of desirelessness, even towards the most exalted states of enlightenment, and is able to exercise the highest kind of discrimination…

Of course, the ultimate in discrimination will be needed. You will have to be aware – so much so that this very, very deep desire of becoming free of all misery, of becoming free of all bondage, even this desire does not arise. Your awareness is so perfect that not even a small corner is left dark inside your being. You are full of light, illuminated with awareness. That’s why when Buddha is asked again and again, “What happens to a man who becomes enlightened?” he remains silent. He never answers. Again and again he is asked, “Why don’t you answer?” He says, “If I answer, you will create a desire for it, and that will become a barrier. Let me keep quiet. Let me remain silent so I don’t give you a new object for desire. If I say, ‘It is satchitananda: it is truth, it is consciousness, it is bliss,’ immediately a desire will arise in you. If I talk about that ecstatic state of being in God, immediately your greed takes it. Suddenly, a desire starts arising in you. Your mind starts saying, ‘Yes, you have to seek it, you have to find it. This has to be searched. Whatsoever the cost, but you have to become blissful.’” Buddha says, “I don’t say anything about it, because whatsoever I say, your mind will jump on it and make a desire out of it, and that will become the cause, and you will never be able to attain it.”

Buddha insisted that there is no moksha. He insisted that when a man becomes aware, he simply disappears. He disappears as when you blow out a lamp and the light disappears. The word “nirvana” simply means blowing a lamp out. Then you don’t ask where the flame has gone, what has happened to the flame; it simply disappears – annihilated. Buddha insisted that there is nothing left; when you have become enlightened everything disappears, like the flame of a lamp put out. Why? – Looks very negative – but he does not want to give you an object of desire. Then people started asking, “Then why should we try for such a state? Then it is better to be in the world. At least we are; miserable – but at least we are; in anguish – but we are. And your state of nothingness has no appeal for us.”

In India, Buddhism disappeared; in China, in Burma, in Ceylon, in Japan, it reappeared, but it never appeared in its purity again because Buddhists learned a lesson: that man lives through desire. If they insist that there is nothing beyond enlightenment and everything disappears, then people are not going to follow them. Then everything will remain as it is; only their religion will disappear. So they learned a trick, and in Japan, in China, in Ceylon, in Burma, they started talking of beautiful states after enlightenment. They betrayed Buddha. The purity was lost; then religion spread. Buddhism became one of the great religions of the world. They learned the politics of the human mind. They fulfilled your desire. They said, “Yes… Lands of tremendous beauty, Buddhalands, heavenly lands where eternal bliss reigns.” They started talking in positive terms. Again people’s greeds were inflamed, desire arose. People started following Buddhism, but Buddhism lost its beauty. Its beauty was in its insistence that it would not give you any object for desire.

Patanjali has written the best that it is possible to write about the ultimate truth, but no religion has arisen around him, no established church exists around him. Such a great teacher, such a great Master has remained really without a following. Not a single temple is devoted to him. What happened? His Yoga Sutras are read, commented upon, but nothing like Christianity, Buddhism, Jainism, Hinduism, Mohammedanism, exists with Patanjali. Why? – Because he will not give any hope to you. He will not give any help to your desire. 

One who is able to maintain a constant state of desirelessness, even towards the most exalted states of enlightenment, and is able to exercise the highest kind of discrimination, enters the state known as ‘the cloud which showers virtue’. 

Dharma megha samadhi: this word has to be understood. It is very complex. And so many commentaries have been written on Patanjali, but it seems they go on missing the point. Dharma megha samadhi means: a moment comes when every desire has disappeared. When even the self is no more desired, when death is not feared, virtue showers on you – as if a cloud gathers around your head, and a beautiful shower of virtue, a benediction, a great blessing…. But why does Patanjali call it ‘cloud’? – One has to go even beyond that; it is still a cloud. Before, your eyes were full of vice, now your eyes are full of virtue, but you are still blind. Before, nothing but misery was showering on you, just a hell was showering on you; now, you have entered heaven and everything is perfectly beautiful, there is nothing to complain about, but still it is a cloud. Maybe it is a white cloud, not a black cloud, but still it is a cloud – and one has to go beyond it also. That’s why he calls it ‘cloud’.

That is the last barrier, and of course it is very beautiful because it is of virtue. It is like golden chains studded with diamonds. They are not like ordinary chains; they look very ornamental. They are more like ornaments than chains. One would like to cling to them. Who would not like to have a tremendous happiness showering on oneself, a non-ending happiness? Who would not like to be in this ecstasy forever and ever? But this too is a cloud – white, beautiful, but still the real sky is hidden behind it.

There is a possibility from this exalted point to still fall back. If you become too attached to dharma megha samadhi, if you become too much attached, you start enjoying it too much and you don’t discriminate that “I am also not this,” there is a possibility that you will come back.

In Christianity, Judaism, Mohammedanism, only two states exist: hell and heaven. This is what Christians call heaven, what Patanjali calls dharma megha samadhi. In the West, no religion has risen beyond that. In India we have three terms: hell, heaven and moksha. Hell is absolute misery; heaven is absolute happiness; moksha is beyond both: neither hell nor heaven. In Western language, there exists not a single term equivalent to moksha. Christianity stops at heaven – dharma megha samadhi. Who bothers anymore to go beyond it? It is so beautiful. And you have lived in so much misery for so long; you would like to remain there forever and ever. But Patanjali says, “If you cling to it, you slip from the last rung of the ladder. You were just close to home. One step more, and then you would have achieved the point of no return – but you slipped. You were just reaching home and you missed the path. You were just at the door – a knock and the doors would have opened – but you thought that the porch was the palace and you started living there.” Sooner or later you will even lose the porch, because the porch exists for those who are going into the palace. It cannot be made an abode. If you make an abode of it, sooner or later you will be thrown out: you are not worthy. You are like a beggar who has started to live on somebody’s porch.

You have to enter the palace; then the porch will remain available. But if you stop at the porch even the porch will be taken away. And the porch is very beautiful, and we have never known anything like that, so certainly we misunderstand – we think the palace has come. We have lived always in anxiety, misery, tension, and even the porch, even to be close to the ultimate palace, to be so close  to the ultimate truth, is so silent, so peaceful, so blissful, such a great benediction, that you cannot imagine that better than that is possible. You would like to settle here.

Patanjali says, “Remain aware.” That’s why he calls it a cloud. It can blind you; you can be lost in it. If you can transcend this cloud – Tatah klesa-karma-nivrttih – Then follows freedom from afflictions and karmas.

If you can transcend dharma megha samadhi, if you can transcend this heavenly state, this paradise, then only… then follows freedom from afflictions and karmas. Otherwise, you will fall back into the world. Have you seen small children play a game called ludo, ladders and snakes? From the ladders they go on rising, and from the snakes they go on coming back. From point ninety-nine, if they reach a hundred they have won the game, they are victorious. But from point ninety-nine there is a snake. If you reach ninety-nine, you are suddenly back, back into the world.

Dharma megha samadhi is the ninety-ninth point, but the snake is there. Before the snake takes hold of you, you have to jump to the hundredth point. Only then, there is abode. You have come back home; a full circle.

-Osho

From Yoga: The Path to Liberation, Discourse #9 (previously published as Yoga: The Alpha and the Omega, V.10)

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

I have split the last sutra discourse from the Yoga series into three posts. This is the second of three. The first one is The Virtuous Circle and the third is You Are the Abode of the Ultimate.

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.