Pure Is-ness – Osho

There is a Sufi song:

A lover knocked at the door of his beloved. A voice cried, “Who is there?” The person outside said, “It is I.” He heard in reply, “This house has no place for two, ‘I’ and ‘Thou’.”

The closed door remained closed. The lover retreated into a forest. There he made penance, observed fasts, and offered prayers. After many years, he returned and again knocked on the closed door. Again the voice asked, “Who is there?”

This time the doors were thrown open, for his reply was, “It is thou.”

This reply, “It is thou”, is the essence of all religion. On the endlessly flowing river of life, “I” is the only bubble. “I” alienates the individual from existence. The bubble of “I” thinks itself distinct from the river, whereas in reality the bubble has no separate existence. It has no separate center, no separate life. It is the ocean. The ocean is its life. Its very existence is in and through the ocean. Even the idea of its being separate from the ocean is ignorance. Look into the bubble, and you find the ocean. Look into the ‘I’, and you find Brahman.

Where ‘I’ does not exist, ‘Thou’ too is absent. There is only ‘being’. Only existence, pure is-ness is there. To awaken into this pure existence is nirvana.

-OSHO

Excerpt from Seeds of Wisdom, Chapter Eight

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

You can read the entire book online at the Osho Library.

Many of Osho’s books are available online from Amazon.com and in the U.S. from OshoStore-Sedona and Osho Here and Now.

 

The Work is Complete – Osho

It happened once:

A great Sufi mystic, Jalaluddin Rumi, used to live with his one hundred disciples in a monastery. Few travelers came. The monastery was far away from any town, far away even from any roads, but people became interested – curious people can go anywhere: they go to the moon. Curious people are curious people, they can go anywhere. They became curious and they went there. It was far away from towns, off the road, but they took all the troubles of the journey and they reached the desert. The doors were not closed – because Rumi had never thought that anybody would come so far away – so they could watch what was happening inside. Exactly this scene, Gramya, that you see here….

Somebody was laughing loudly, madly, somebody was dancing, somebody was singing, somebody was standing on his head, people were doing a thousand and one things – and Jalaluddin Rumi was sitting just in the middle of it all, silent, with closed eyes. So they thought ‘What is going on? Have these people gone mad? What are these lunatics doing here? And what is this man doing? He is simply sitting, with closed eyes. He should stop these people – it is dangerous; they may go beyond the limit.’ And somebody was raving like a maniac, and somebody was hitting the wall, and everything was going on.

They became very afraid. They became so afraid that they went away. But after one year curiosity took possession of them again and they thought ’We should go and see what is happening now. Things must have gone worse. Either they must have killed that Jalaluddin Rumi by now, because he was just sitting in the middle of it, or they must have committed suicide… murders must have happened!’ So they went again. They could not believe it: they were all sitting silently. Only Jalaluddin Rumi was dancing. ‘So what has happened then? Things have completely changed.’ They thought ‘It seems this man has taken the madness of all, so that they have become silent and he is dancing.’ But this was a worse situation because they thought at least he had been sane, now he also was insane. But they took pity on the man. They thought ‘It is natural – just to be amidst these mad people for so long, he must have gone out of his mind.’

They went away. But after one year curiosity again took possession of them and they thought ‘We must go and see what is happening now.’ So they went there. There was nobody, only Jalaluddin Rumi was sitting alone – the whole group had disappeared. Now it was too much. What happened? They became too curious. They went to Jalaluddin Rumi and they said ‘We want to ask what happened? Where are those nuts? What happened to them? And what are you doing sitting here alone?’

And Jalaluddin Rumi said ‘The work is done. Now they have gone into the wider world to find other nuts – to help them. The work is complete.’

Then they asked ‘Why were you dancing last year when we came?’

He said ‘I was dancing because I was so happy that my disciples had achieved. It was dangerous, it was very arduous, to release their madness accumulated down the centuries, but they were really capable people. I was happy, that’s why I was dancing. Now they have gone to find other mad people. Now they will make a hundred monasteries all around the earth.’

-OSHO

From Tao: The Pathless Path, V.1, Chapter Twelve

Tao-The Pathless Path, V.1

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

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

Many of Osho’s books are available online from Amazon.com and in the U.S. from OshoStore-Sedona and Osho Here and Now.

 

Junnaid’s Gratitude – Osho

I have always loved to remember a Sufi master, Junnaid. He was the master of al-Hillaj Mansoor. He had a habit: after each prayer – and Mohammedans pray five times a day – after each prayer he would say to the sky, “Your compassion is great. How beautifully you take care of us, and we don’t deserve it. I don’t even have words to show my gratefulness, but I hope you will understand the unexpressed gratitude of my heart.”

They were on a pilgrimage, and it happened that for three days they passed through villages where orthodox Mohammedans would not allow them even to stay in the villages; there was no question of giving them food or water. For three days without food, without water, without sleep, tired, utterly frustrated… The disciples could not believe that this man Junnaid, their master, still goes on saying the same things. Before, it was okay – but still he goes on saying, “You are great, you are compassionate, and I don’t have words to express my gratitude.”

On the third evening when he had finished his prayer, his disciples said, “Now it is time for an explanation. For three days we have been hungry, we have not had water, we are thirsty; we have not slept, we have been insulted continually, no place has been given to us, no shelter. At least today you should not say, ‘You are great, you are compassionate.’ For what are you showing your gratitude?”

Junnaid laughed. He said, “My trust in existence is unconditional. It is not that I am grateful because existence provides this and that and that. I am – that’s enough. Existence accepts me – that’s enough. And I don’t deserve to be; I have not earned it. Moreover, these three days have been of tremendous beauty because I had an opportunity to watch whether anger would arise in me, and it didn’t arise; whether I would start to feel that God had forsaken me, and the idea did not arise. There has been no difference in my attitude towards existence. My gratitude has not changed, and it has filled me with more gratitude than ever. It was a fire test, and I have come out of it unburned. What more do you want? I will trust existence in my life and I will trust existence in my death. It is my love affair.

-Osho

Excerpt from Beyond Enlightenment, Chapter 19

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

Beyond Enlightenment

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 online from Amazon.com and in the U.S. from OshoStore-Sedona and Osho Here and Now.

How to Die – Osho

Every culture, every civilization, every so called religion, cuts every child off from his heart. It is a most dangerous thing. All that is dangerous comes out of the heart. Mind is more secure, and with the mind you know where you are. With the heart, no one ever knows where one is. With the mind, everything is calculated, mapped, measured. And you can feel the crowd always with you, in front of you, at the back of you. Many are moving on it; it is a highway – concrete, solid, gives you a feeling of security. With the heart you are alone. Nobody is with you. Fear grips, fear possesses you. Where are you going? Now you no longer know, because when you move with a crowd on a highway, you know where you are moving because you think the crowd knows.

And everybody is in the same position: everybody thinks, ‘So many people are moving, we must be moving somewhere; otherwise, why so many people, millions of them, moving? They must be moving somewhere.’ Everybody thinks like that. In fact, the crowd is not moving anywhere. No crowd has ever reached any goal. The crowd goes on moving and moving. You are born; you become part of the crowd. And the crowd was already moving before you were born. And then a day comes when you are finished, you die, and the crowd goes on moving, because new ones are always being born. The crowd never reaches anywhere! – but it gives a feeling of comfort. You feel cozy, surrounded by so many people wiser than you, older than you, more experienced than you; they must know where they are moving – you feel secure.

The moment you start falling towards the heart… and it is a falling: falling like falling in an abyss. That’s why when somebody is in love; we say he has fallen in love. It is a fall – the head sees it as a fall – someone has gone astray, fallen. When you start falling towards the heart you become alone; now nobody can be with you there, you in your total loneliness. Afraid, scared you will be. Now you will not know where you are going, because nobody is there and there are no milestones. In fact, there is no concrete solid path. Heart is unmapped, unmeasured, uncharted. Tremendous fear will be there.

The whole of my effort is to help you not to be afraid, because only through the heart will you be reborn. But before you are reborn, you will have to die. Nobody can be reborn before he dies. So the whole message of Sufism, Zen, Hassidism – these are all forms of Sufism – is how to die. The whole art of dying is the base. I am teaching you here nothing except that: how to die.

If you die, you become available to infinite sources of life. You die, really, in your present form. It has become too narrow. You only survive in it – you don’t live. The tremendous possibility of life is completely closed, and you feel confined, imprisoned. You feel everywhere a limitation, a boundary. A wall, a stone wall comes wherever you move – a wall.

My whole effort is how to break these stone walls. And they are not made of stone – they are made of thoughts. And nothing is more like rock than a thought. They are made of dogmas, scriptures. They surround you. And wherever you go, you carry them with you. Your imprisonment you carry with you. Your prison is always hanging around you. How to break them?

The breaking of the walls will appear to you like a death. It is in a way, because your present identity will be lost. Whosoever you are, that identity will be lost. You will be that no more. Suddenly something else…. It was always hidden within you, but you were not aware. Suddenly a discontinuity. The old is no more there, and something utterly new has entered. It is not continuous with your past. That’s why we call it a death. It is not continuous: a gap exists.

And if you look backwards, you will not feel that whatsoever existed before this resurrection was real. No, it will appear as if you saw it in a dream; or it will appear as if you read it somewhere in a fiction; or, as if somebody else related his own story and it was never yours – somebody else’s. The old completely disappears. That’s why we call it a death. An absolutely new phenomenon comes into existence. And remember the word ‘absolutely’. It is not a modified form of the old; it has no connection with the old. It is resurrection. But resurrection is possible only when you are capable of dying.

-Osho

Excerpt from Until You Die (Journey Toward the Heart), Chapter One

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 online from Amazon.com and in the U.S. from OshoStore-Sedona and Osho Here and Now.

One Step Away – Osho

Professor Coleman Barks has asked a question:

I feel very grateful for your enlightenment, your wisdom, your daring experiments, your life.

Thank you!

Rumi said, “I want burning, burning….” What is that burning? Shams said, “I am fire.” Do you have any word on Shams? From Shams? What do the burning and the fire have to do with my own enlightenment?

Coleman, you have asked a very dangerous question! – Because burning has nothing to do with your enlightenment. On the path of enlightenment there is no question of burning. But because you are in love with Mevlana Jalaluddin Rumi… I also love the man. But you have to understand that Sufism still depends on a hypothetical God. It is not free from the hypothesis of God. And particularly Sufism has the concept of God as a woman. Love is their method – love God as totally as possible. Now you are loving an impossible hypothesis, and totality is asked. You will feel the same kind of burning, in a more intensive way, as lovers feel on a smaller scale.

Lovers feel a certain burning in their hearts. A deep longing and desire to meet with the beloved creates that burning. To love God is bound to create a very great fire in you. You will be on fire because you have chosen as your love object something impossible; your object of love is hypothetical. You will have to weep and cry, and you will have to pray, and you will have to fast, and your mind has to continuously repeat and remember the beloved.

The mind has the capacity to imagine anything and also has the capacity to hypnotize itself. After long repetition you can even see God, just the way you imagined. It is a by-product of your mind. It will make you very happy, you will dance with joy.

I have been with Sufis and I have loved those people. But they are still one step away from being a buddha. Even though their poetry is beautiful – it has to be, because it is coming out of their love – their experience is a hallucination created by their own mind. In Sufism, mind is stretched to the point that you become almost mad for the beloved. Those days of separation from the beloved create the sensation of burning.

On the path of dhyan, or Zen, there is no burning at all because there is no hypothesis, no God. And it is not a question of love. A man of Zen is very loving, but he has not practiced love; it has come as a by-product of his realization. He has simply realized his own buddhahood. There is no question of another, a God somewhere else in heaven. He has simply reached his own center of life, and being there he explodes into love, into compassion. His love comes after his enlightenment; it is not a method for enlightenment.

But for Sufis, love is the method. Because love is the method, it remains part of the mind.

The effort on the path of Zen is to go beyond mind, to attain no-mind, to be utterly empty of all thoughts, love included. Zen is the path of emptiness – no God, no love, nothing is to be allowed; just a pure nothingness in which you also disappear.

Who is there to feel the burning? Who is there to feel the fire?

So although I love Sufis… I don’t want, Coleman, to hurt your feelings, but I would certainly say that you will have one day to change from Sufis to Zen. Sufis are still living in imagination; they have not known the state of no-mind. And because they have not known the state of no-mind, however beautiful their personalities may become, they are still just close to enlightenment, but not enlightened. Remember, even to be very close is not to be enlightened.

And the reason is clear: Sufism is a branch, an offshoot of Mohammedanism. It carries almost all that is good in Mohammedanism. But Mohammedanism is the lowest kind of religion. Mohammedanism, Judaism, Christianity – all are hypothetical.

There have been only two religions which are not hypothetical, Buddhism and Taoism. Zen is a crossbreed of these two, and the crossbreed is always better than both the parents. It is the meeting of Buddha and Lao Tzu; out of this meeting is born Zen. It is not Buddhism, it is not Taoism; it has its own individuality. It carries everything beautiful that comes from Buddha and everything great that comes from Lao Tzu. It is the highest peak that man has ever reached.

Hinduism is a mess: thirty-three million gods! – What do you expect? Hinduism has remained a philosophical, controversial, hypothetical religion. It has not been able to reach the heights of Buddha. Buddha was born a Hindu but revolted against this mess, searched alone rather than believing. That is one of the most important things to remember. Any religion that begins with belief is going to give you an auto-hypnotic experience.

Only Taoism and Buddhism don’t start with a belief. Their whole effort is that you should enter yourself without any concept of what you are going to find there. Just being open, available, without any prejudice, without any philosophy and scripture – just go in, open-hearted, and when you reach to the point where mind is silent, not a single thought moving…

According to Tao and Buddha, even God is a thought. When there is no thought, you reach the highest Everest of consciousness. At that point you know that every living being has the potentiality of being a god.

Buddha is reported to have said, “The moment I became enlightened, I was surprised: the whole of existence is enlightened; only people don’t understand. They are carrying their enlightenment within themselves and they don’t look at it.”

Buddha has reported his past lives’ experiences. When he was not an enlightened man but was just a seeker, he heard about a man who had become enlightened, so he went to see him. He had no idea of what enlightenment is, and he had not come with any prejudice for or against. But as he came close to the man, he found himself bowing down and touching the man’s feet. He was surprised! He had not decided to do it – in spite of himself he was touching the man’s feet. That was one surprise. And as he stood up, the second surprise was even bigger: the enlightened man touched his feet. He said, “What are you doing? You are enlightened, it is perfectly right for me to touch your feet. But why are you touching my feet?”

And that man laughed. He said, “Sometime before, I was unenlightened. Now I am enlightened.

You are unenlightened now. Someday you will become enlightened. So it is only a question of time. As far as I am concerned, you may not know it but I can see your hidden treasure.”

So everybody is a buddha, either aware of it or unaware of it. No hypothesis comes into the path of Zen.

What Rumi is saying – “I want burning, burning…” – is the mind focused on a hypothetical beloved, and the burning desire to meet him, to melt in him. But it is an objective god – it may be woman or man, it does not matter.

In Bengal, in India, there is a small sect which believes that only Krishna is male and everybody else is female. Because everybody is female and there is a great burning to meet the lover, the god, they sleep with a statue of Krishna in their bed.

But these are all mind games. Except for Gautam Buddha and Lao Tzu, and the people who became enlightened from their lineages, the whole of humanity is living in hypotheses. I appreciate the poetry of Rumi, I appreciate the beauty of many Sufi mystics, but I cannot say that they are enlightened. They are still groping, and their groping will stop only when they drop this hypothesis of God.

The search has to be inwards, not outwards. Any search that is outwards is going to change your personality. It can make it more beautiful, more loving, but it is just imagination.

It happened that one Sufi master who was very much loved… his disciples used to come to me and say, “When our master comes, we want you both to meet.”

I said, “On one condition: your master should be my guest for just three days, and you have not to come for three days.”

So the master came, as he used to come every year for a month or two to that place. He was a lovely man, very fragrant, very radiant, very joyful. He used to dance and sing and play on instruments. When he came to my house, I closed the door and told the disciples, “Now you disappear, and for three days leave him with me.”

The master said, “What do you want?”

I said, “You put your instruments away, and for three days don’t think about your beloved God.”

He said, “What is the purpose of this?”

I said, “The purpose will be known after three days. Just for three days be normal. You are abnormal.”

He said, “You are a strange fellow! I am abnormal?”

I said, “Just drop this idea of a hypothetical God. Have you seen God?”

He said, “I see God everywhere.”

I said, “When did it start happening?”

He said, “It took twenty years for me to see God in everyone. Finally, I started seeing.”

I said, “That’s why I am saying that for three days; don’t do anything you have been doing. For these three days take a holiday from your practice of seeing God in everyone.”

Just in one day it was finished! The next day he was very angry with me. He said, “Just let me go. You have destroyed my twenty years’ effort. For just one night I followed your idea, and now in the morning I don’t see any God anywhere.”

I said, “A God that you have been seeing for twenty years disappears within a single night – what is it worth? Can’t you see that it is a hypothesis that you have imposed? And twenty years are not needed for such programming – such programming can be done within hours.”

A person can be hypnotized just for seven days continually and told he will see God everywhere, in everyone, and he will be very joyful, very loving. Within seven days the person can be programmed just like a computer, and he will start seeing God. But this is not the way of truth.

Coleman, it is perfectly good: enjoy Rumi’s beautiful poems, enjoy beautiful Sufi stories. I have enjoyed them. But I warn you, don’t get lost into them. They are just a game of the mind, a strategy of self-hypnosis.

I said that you have asked a dangerous question. I don’t want to hurt your feelings and your love, but I have to say the truth even if it hurts. One day you will feel grateful to me.

Sufism is nothing. You can find good poetry anywhere. And if you want, bring any Sufi to me and I will take away all his experience within one hour. These are abnormal people, hypnotizing themselves.

The real thing is to come to a point of de-hypnotizing yourself, because every society has already hypnotized you. A Hindu thinks Krishna is a god, and never bothers that Krishna stole sixteen thousand women from different people. He was married only to one woman. But sixteen thousand women – any beautiful woman, and his soldiers would catch hold of her; he just had to make a sign that they should take her to the palace.

Krishna behaved with women like they were cattle, and he never thought that they have children, they have husbands, they have their old parents, or their husband’s parents, and he is destroying their whole family life. And what is he going to do with sixteen thousand women? He is not a bull. Even a bull will be tired. Sixteen thousand – it is a record. Still, no Hindu will question the point.

Rama is God to the Hindus, and nobody questions that he killed one poor untouchable, a young man, just because he heard somebody reciting the Vedas. The Hindu society has maintained the caste system for five thousand years, and the untouchable, the sudra, the last, is not allowed to read any religious scripture. He is not allowed to be educated either. Untouchables are not allowed to live in the city; they have to live outside the city. They do all the dirty work of the city and they live the poorest life in the world. Their whole dignity and manhood is taken away.

And this young man had not read anything, he simply heard some brahmin reciting the Rigveda. Just hiding behind the trees out of curiosity, he was caught hold of, and when he was brought to Rama because he had committed this great crime, Rama told his people, “Melt some lead and pour it into both his ears, because he has heard the Veda, which is prohibited.”

The man certainly died. When you pour burning lead into the ears, you cannot expect the man to remain alive. He fell dead then and there. And no Hindu questions it. Even people like Mahatma Gandhi just go on repeating the name of Rama; he is a god. And this is the situation all over the world, with every religion. I have looked in all nooks and corners, and except Zen I don’t find any religious phenomenon which is absolutely pure and which has not committed a single crime against humanity. It has only contributed more beauty and more grace and more love and more meditativeness.

So it is perfectly good, Coleman; enjoy the poetry, but don’t think that these poetries are coming out of enlightenment. They have not even heard the word enlightenment. No word exists in Persian, in Urdu, in Arabic, equivalent to enlightenment. They have “God realization,” realization of the beloved – but the beloved is separate from you.

The whole point is that even if you find a god which is separate from you, millions of others must have found him before. You will be in a crowd. And what are you going to do when you meet God? – say, “Hello, how are you”? There is nothing much in just meeting – you will look embarrassed and God will look embarrassed: Now what to do with this Professor Coleman? ”It was very good… you were doing good translations, but why have you come here?”

Now don’t do any such thing, creating any embarrassment for God. There exists no God. What exists is godliness, and that godliness surrounds you. We are all in the same ocean.

An ancient story is: A young, very philosophical-minded fish asked other fish, “We have heard so much about the ocean; where is it? I want to meet the ocean.”

Everybody shrugged their shoulders; they said, “We have also heard about the ocean, but we don’t know where it is.”

An old fish took the boy aside and told him, “There is no other ocean anywhere. We are in it. We are born in it, we live in it, we die in it. This is the ocean.”

And I say unto you, the same is true with us. We are born in godliness, we live in godliness, we die in godliness. Just one thing has to be remembered: either you can pass through this tremendous experience of life asleep, or fully awakened.

Meditation is the only way to make you aware. And once you are fully aware, all around is the ocean of godliness. The very life, the very consciousness is divine. It expresses in all the forms – in the roses and in the lotuses and in the birds and in the trees. Wherever life is, it is nothing but godliness. We are living in the ocean of godliness. So don’t search anywhere. Just look within, because that is the closest point you can find.

Sufism is beautiful but is not the ultimate answer, and you should not stop at Sufism. It is a good training to begin with. End up with Zen.

And it is a great, surprising thing, that from the peaks of Zen you will be able to understand Sufism more than you can understand by living in the Sufi circles. Some distance is needed, and Zen gives you the distance. From that distance you can witness all the religions. What are they doing? – playing games, beautiful games, but games are games after all.

You are asking, “What do the burning and the fire have to do with my own enlightenment?” Nothing at all. You are enlightened in this very moment; just enter silently into your own being. Find the center of your being and you have found the center of the whole universe. We are separate on the periphery but we are one at the center. I call this the buddha experience.

Unless you become a buddha – and remember, it is the poverty of language that I have to say

“Unless you become….” You already are. So I have to say, unless you recognize, unless you remember what you have forgotten….

Every child in its innocence knows, and every child goes astray because of so much knowledge being poured in by the parents, by the priests, by the teachers. Soon the child’s innocence is completely covered with all kinds of bullshit.

The whole effort of meditation is to cut through all the dust that society has poured upon you and just to find that small buddha-nature you were born with. The day you find the buddha-nature you were born with, the circle is complete. You have again become innocent.

Socrates in his last days said, “When I was young I thought I knew much. As I became older I started thinking I knew everything. But as I became still older and my consciousness became sharper, I suddenly realized I don’t know anything.”

It is a beautiful story that in Greece there is – used to be, now it is ruins – the temple of Delphi. And the oracle of the temple of Delphi declared that Socrates was the wisest man in the whole world. The people who had known Socrates rushed to tell him, “The oracle has declared you the wisest man in the world!”

Socrates said, “The oracle for the first time is wrong. I know nothing.”

The people were very much in a puzzle. They went back to Delphi and told the oracle, “You say he is the wisest man and he says he knows nothing.”

The oracle said, “That’s why he is the wisest man in the world. He has again become a child. He has come back home.”

-Osho

From Rinzai: Master of the Irrational, Chapter Two

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 online from Amazon.com and in the U.S. from OshoStore-Sedona and Osho Here and Now.

In an interview that Coleman Barks did with Michael Toms of New Dimensions Radio on December 12, 2010, Coleman Barks spoke of asking Osho the above question. Here is the excerpt.

The entire interview can be found here:

Coleman Barks wrote the following introduction to Osho’s book, Just Like That (Penguin Books India), which is from a series of discourses Osho gave on Sufi stories:

It seems important to me that Osho be known to an audience wider than his beautiful community, and that this book in particular find new readers.

I am very grateful for his amazing talking, his daring experiments with community and transformation, his enlightenment and his jokes! (Did you get the satire of American consumerism with the ninety seven Rolls Royces? Some people missed that.)

The humor always bubbles close, no matter what’s being discussed. The lack of a 13th floor in American hotels, the responsibilities of being awake, a dog jumping in a river, Gurdjieff’s non-identification, the prodigal son, meditation, the aggression of science, Shibli and his three teachers—there’s great generosity of detail here, and his joy is primary.

It’s all one thing, really, these morning talks. Reading them, you’ll taste a fresh spring water from those days. The catalyst for each is part of a Sufi story, brilliantly interpreted. But don’t come with your intellectual acumen drawn. Or do—He will meet you however you approach. This is a profound form of play. Osho improvises the jazz discourses of the century. Better than Gurdjieff. What am I doing in the front of this book? I got asked because of my work on Rumi, and also perhaps because I visited the commune inPune in October 1988 and felt very at home there. Maybe I’m what he called in the early 80’s a shravakar.

Here’s a Sufi story that he doesn’t discuss in this book:

Ibn Khafif Shirazi once said, ‘I heard that there were two great masters in Egypt so I hurried to reach their presence. When I arrived I saw two magnificent teachers meditating. I greeted them three times, but they did not answer. I meditated with them for four days. Each day I would beg them to talk with me, since I had come such a long way.

Finally the younger one opened his eyes. “Ibn Khafif, life is short. Use the portion that’s left to deepen yourself. Don’t waste time greeting people!” I asked him to give me some advice. “Stay in the presence of those who remind you of your lord, who not only speak wisdom, but are that.” Then he went back into meditation.’

I feel like that man, Ibn Khafif. At Osho’s level of being, introductions are unnecessary and serve mostly as puffery for the introducer. Let the music begin.

 

 

Remembrance – Osho

LA ILLAHA ILL ALLAH – there is no God but God. There is no goal but the goal. And the goal is not separate from the source; the source and the goal are the same phenomenon. This is one of the most fundamental things to be understood: to reach the goal one has to reach the source. The alpha is the omega.

If you go on trying to reach the goal you will remain in an eternal wandering and you will never come home. If you start searching for the source you will not only find the source, but you will have also found the goal. When the source is found the circle is complete.

God is not where we are going; God is from where we are coming. And our eyes are fixed on distant stars. We go on looking ahead. We are oriented towards the distant and faraway, and all those goals that we create are our own mind projections. The real goal is from where we are coming. It is in our very nature, it is in our very being, it is the very ground of our existence. Hui Hai once went to visit the great Master Ma Tzu. The Master asked him, “Why do you come here?” Hui Hai replied, “I come seeking enlightenment.”

The Master said, “Why should you leave your home to wander about and neglect your own precious treasure? There is nothing I can give you. Why do you seek enlightenment from me?

The visitor pressed him for the truth, “But what is my treasure?”

The Master answered, “It is he who has just asked the question. It contains everything and lacks nothing. There is no need to seek it outside yourself.”

Seeking presupposes that it is far away. Seeking has taken it for granted that it is not now-here, that it is not in you, that it is not you. Seeking has already supposed that it is different, separate from you and somewhere else, and it has to be sought to be found.

This presupposition creates the misery for the seeker. The seeker lives in misery and frustration because the seeker has started on a wrong journey. The seeker is never going to find God, because God is not the sought but the seeker himself.

The only religious question worth asking is “Who am I?” That means diving deep within your own consciousness, coming closer and closer to your center. And when you have reached, penetrated the center like an arrow, one is surprised that nothing was ever lacking, nothing was ever missed, that you had not left your home, that you were already there, but your eyes were wandering far away. Only your eyes were wandering far away; you were rooted in your home. But your mind, your dreams, your eyes, your ideas, they had left you, and they were roaming all over the world.

Ma Tzu is right. He says, “Why do you come here? What is the point of coming here? Why did you leave your home?”

These statements are not ordinary statements; they are very symbolic. The home does not mean just the ordinary home. He means God. Ma Tzu is saying, “Why have you left your source? Why this unnecessary wandering? All that you need is already provided for. You have the treasure within you. Why do you come here?”

Hui Hai replied, “I come seeking enlightenment.”

Now, that is the fundamental error of all seekers. Enlightenment cannot be sought, and if you seek it you will never find it. Enlightenment is when there is no seeking. Enlightenment is when there is no desiring, not even the desire for enlightenment. Enlightenment is when you are still, calm, quiet, and there is no mind, no desire, nowhere to go, when you are suddenly here and now. That very moment is enlightenment: light explodes in you – you become light.

Hui Hai said, “I come seeking enlightenment.” And everybody is seeking, in different names. You may call it bliss, you may call it God, you may call it enlightenment, you may call it truth, love, beauty; it doesn’t matter what you call it. But everybody is seeking something. All are seekers in the world; the world is full of seekers.

And remember, the man who is seeking money and power is not different from the seeker who is running after God. It is the same seeking. The object of the seeking makes no difference in the nature of seeking; the quality of the seeking is the same.

What is that quality? It is tension between that which you are and that which you would like to be. A wants to be B – this is seeking. The poor want to be rich; the unenlightened want to be enlightened; the ugly person wants to become beautiful; the unknown person wants to become famous. It is the same seeking. Seeking means discontentment with that which you are.

Then what is non-seeking? Non-seeking is: A is perfectly happy in being A and has no desire to be B.

Contentment is the beginning of enlightenment. Contentment is the seed which becomes enlightenment. The seeker is discontented, tense, worried. Continuously he is going to face frustration because whatsoever he is going to do is doomed to fail.

Remember it, because there are religions, priests, pedagogues who go on teaching people, “Don’t seek worldly things; seek other-worldly things.” They only change the object of seeking. They say, “Don’t seek money, seek meditation.” And it appears on the surface as if they are transforming your being. They are not. They are only giving you a new toy to play with. But the old seeking will continue; you will remain the same old person with the same old rotten mind, with the same old wandering, tensions, frustrations, worries. Nothing is going to change by that. That is not conversion.

Then what is conversion? Conversion is when you understand the nature of seeking, when you see the point that it is seeking that is debarring you from getting, that it is seeking that is the wall, that it is seeking that keeps you separate from the sought, that it is seeking itself that has to be dropped and nothing else. Seeking is worldly; non-seeking is other-worldly. When the seeker becomes a non-seeker he becomes religious.

But how to become a non-seeker? One can become a non-seeker only if this understanding arises: that rather than going for some goal, the first and most necessary thing to know is “Who am I? From where do I come? What is my source?” If the wave looks for its source, it will find the ocean. And if man looks for his source, he will find God.

We are waves in the ocean of God. If a leaf of a tree starts looking for its source it will find the roots of the tree. It will find the earth; it will find its very source. We are leaves of the tree of God, waves of the ocean of God.

But if the leaf starts looking outwards… and there is the beautiful moon hanging so close by, and it looks so enchanting, and the leaf becomes troubled, starts dreaming. And certainly the wave dreams of the moon. When the moon is full, the waves start rising high, higher and higher; a great longing arises to reach the moon.

You will be surprised to know, scientists have found that it is not only the waves that rise when the full moon is in the sky. Even the earth – almost six inches whenever the moon is full – even the earth starts rising six inches. It also tries hard to reach the moon. When the full moon is there, the earth forgets all its solidity, becomes a little liquid, behaves as if it is made of rubber, tries to reach the moon. And man is made eighty percent of water and twenty percent of earth. That’s why the full moon has so much hypnotic power on man – eighty percent ocean in him, twenty percent earth in him, and both start rising towards the moon.

The fact has been known down the ages that the moon drives people crazy. Hence the word “lunatic”; it means struck by the moon. Lunatic comes from the word luna, the moon. The moon is so close by, it attracts.

And there are many “moons” in life – you are surrounded by many attractive goals. There is power, there is money, there is prestige, respectability, fame. And there are a thousand and one things. One is constantly pulled in this direction and that.

Life provides you with many goals, and there is only one goal: that goal is God.

But to call God the goal is very paradoxical because he is also the origin. And only the origin, the source, can be the goal because ultimately, when you have reached back home and the circle of your life is complete and perfect, there is fulfillment.

Ma Tzu is right. He says, “Why should you leave your home to wander about and neglect your own precious treasure? There is nothing I can give you. ”

No Master can give you anything. Truth has never been given. It is not a thing to be given or taken.

And you don’t need it in the first place from anywhere else because you already have it there within you. You are it. The Master only makes you aware that the treasure is within you, the kingdom of God is within you. He provokes you, he shakes you and shocks you, so that you can become aware of who you are. The Master cannot give it to you. It is not a thing in the first place, and in the second place you don’t need it. And the given truth will be borrowed, and the given can be taken away. The truth has to arise in you; only then it cannot be taken away.

Ma Tzu is really a great Master. He says, “There is nothing I can give you. Why do you seek enlightenment from me?” The visitor pressed him for the truth. ”But what is my treasure?”

The Master answered, “It is he who has just asked the question.” Meditate over it. A tremendously significant statement: “It is he who has just asked the question.” It is your consciousness that is your treasure. Diving deep into your consciousness you will touch the source, the rock bottom of your being.

And it is there where God is found, and enlightenment, and freedom, and love, and beauty, and bliss, and all that you have always wanted and was never happening. All suddenly happens simultaneously. The experience of the source is a multidimensional experience. Ma Tzu says, “It contains everything and lacks nothing” – your consciousness – “There is no need to seek it outside yourself.”

Hui Hai later on became a Master in his own right and a great Master too. This was the beginning – this was the seduction from Ma Tzu. Listening to this, when Ma Tzu said, “It is the one who has just asked the question,” a great trembling arose in Hui Hai, a great energy started moving. The frozenness disappeared, he melted. He bowed down to Ma Tzu, and in that very moment he had his first satori.

This is what I am trying to do here – provoking you, seducing you into that which you already are, but you have forgotten about it. I am only reminding you of it.

Sufis say there are two things the whole of religion consists of. One is faqr: nobodiness, nothingness, egolessness, humbleness. In faqr, all those things are implied. The basic point is that you are not separate from existence. To think yourself separate from existence causes the phenomenon of the ego. And the ego gives you the idea that “I am somebody”, and then, “somebody special”. And then you have to prove, then you have to compete, then you have to be ambitious and succeed. Then you have to leave your footprints on the sands of time; you have to leave your name in history. And then all kinds of desires start arising in you.

But the root of all desires is in the acceptance of a false idea that “I am.” When a person drops that idea, he is a fakir, he has attained to faqr. This is the real meaning of fakir. It does not mean just a beggar; it does not mean just poverty. The real poverty consists of egolessness. That’s what Jesus means when he says, “Unless you are poor in spirit you will not attain to my kingdom of God”… poor in spirit.

It is very easy to renounce your wealth and become poor outwardly; it is very easy. But rather than helping you to become inwardly poor it may hinder, because the person who renounces becomes very egoistic. He starts thinking, “Look, I have renounced so much. I am no ordinary mortal. I am a great sage, a saint, a mahatma – I have renounced all. ”

And deep down in him he starts comparing himself with those who have not renounced. He becomes “holier-than-thou”. He starts pretending that he is on a high pedestal, that everybody else is condemned, that everybody else is going to hell except him – because he has renounced the world, the joys of the world, the things of the world. Rather than becoming inwardly poor he has become inwardly very rich. The ego is strengthened. The ego has become stronger; it is more solid than before. It is almost a rock.

That’s why I don’t say to my sannyasins: renounce the world. I say renounce the ego! Let the world be as it is. Who are you to renounce it? In the very idea of renouncing, you accept one thing, that it belongs to you. How can you renounce something which does not belong to you? See the simple point: nothing belongs to you.

You come into this world without a thing and you go from this world without a thing. You come empty-handed and you go empty-handed. Nothing belongs to you, so how can you renounce?

Renunciation is possible only if possession is possible. Possession is just an illusion; you don’t possess anything. How can you possess anything? Death will come and will separate you from all your possessions, and you will not be able to take a single thing with you.

The first illusion is of possession and the second illusion is of renunciation. And both are based in the same ego. First the ego tries to possess as much as it can – the more it possesses, the more it is. Then comes a point when you have possessed so much that it loses all interest, it becomes boring.

That’s why rich people look so bored; you will not find poor people so bored. Rich people are always bored, utterly bored. The richer they get, the more bored they are. From where comes the boredom? Their boredom is coming from their possessions. They have everything that they ever hoped for, dreamed of; now what else is there to do? All their hopes are fulfilled and nothing is fulfilled in their being. A great boredom starts settling. They have enjoyed all that the world can give, and all those joys have proved superficial, momentary. And they have done those things so many times, they have repeated all those things so many times, that now there seems to be nothing new. They are constantly hankering for some new amusement, some new entertainment. They are utterly bored.

The poor person is not so bored. He still has many things to hope for. Tomorrow he is going to have a better house, the day after tomorrow a better car, and so on, so forth. He can hope; his eyes are full of hope. There are surprises still waiting for him in the future. For the rich man there is no future; for the poor man the whole future is there, he is excited.

For the rich man all is past, there is no future. In the future there is only death and nothing else; nothing else is going to happen to him. He has the biggest house, the most beautiful woman or man, all kinds of gadgets that technology can supply. What else is there? The future seems bleak – only death, somen, here, nothing else. In the dark night of the future only death is lurking. The rich man becomes bored – he is bored to death. He’s afraid, he is in a panic. He cannot hope, and to be in a hopeless state is the most miserable state to be in.

Then he starts renouncing. That brings excitement again; the future becomes hopeful again. Now he thinks, “I will renounce all that I have. I will become the humblest person in the world, the most poor. I will become a great sage, and the world will know how much I have renounced – nobody has renounced that much before. I will be the greatest saint in the world.” Again there is hope. The ego has taken another life, another incarnation: now he starts renouncing, he goes on renouncing. Just as there is no end to possessions, there seems to be no end to renunciation. He goes on renouncing – clothes, food, house everything – companionship, friendship, relationship, people. He escapes to the Himalayan cave or goes deep into the forest or escapes into a monastery. He goes on renouncing, but one day again the end comes. He has renounced all and nothing is gained. He is bored again. Go into the monasteries and you will see the same boredom on the monks’ faces as you will see on the rich people’s faces. There is not any difference.

I don’t tell my sannyasins to renounce the world. Through renunciation the ego survives again, and survives in a more subtle way, becomes more poisonous, because now it can pretend to be holy. To be poor in spirit means to see the point that “I am not” – “God is, I am not. The whole is, the part is not. The ocean is, the wave is not.” This is inner poverty; this is faqr. Then you can be in the monastery or in the marketplace, it makes no difference. You know you are not, so whatsoever is-God’s will: if he wants you to be in the monastery you are in the monastery, if he wants you to be in the marketplace you are in the marketplace. ”Thy will be done” – that is FAQR. ”I have no will of my own, your will is all. I have no destination of my own; wherever you are going, I am simply coming with you. I will be your shadow; I will not be a separate entity in my own right.”

And the second thing that Sufis say is a fundamental of religion is zikr, remembrance of God. God has not to be achieved; God has not to be discovered; God has not to be invented either. God has only to be remembered. We have only forgotten him. All that is needed is an awakening. That is called zikr.

-Osho

From The Secret, Chapter 21

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 online from Amazon.com and in the U.S. from OshoStore-Sedona and Osho Here and Now.

You Are It – Osho

What is a mystical experience?

Margo, first: a mystical experience is not an experience at all. It is called ’mystical experience’ because we have to call it something, but it is not an experience at all.

An experience is always outside you. You see the clouds in the sky, or the lightning in the sky. Or, you can see the same inside too: you can close your eyes and you can see light inside that too is outside – because the seer remains always outside the seen, the observer remains outside the observed, the experiencer remains outside the experienced. And the mystical experience is not something outside you: it is very special kind of experience, unique. What is its uniqueness?

The experience and the experienced become one, the knower and the known become one. There is no division at all. It is not that you see something, but that you are it. God is never experienced as an object: God is always experienced as your innermost being. “ANA’L HAQ!” declares Al-Hillaj Mansoor – “I am God!” the Sufi says. Or “AHAM BRAHMASMI!” the Upanishads declare – “I am all!” It is not an experience! All experiences have been dissolved. Nothing is left. Only pure consciousness is there, but in that pure consciousness this understanding arises. The knower and the known are no more separate.

The mystical experience is such that you are involved in it with your totality. It is not in the head, it is not in the heart either; it is not in the body, it is not in the mind, it is not in the soul only. It pulsates all over you and beyond you. It pulsates with your totality.

I have heard a very ancient parable:

Once it happened, three saints, very famous saints, well-known saints, were passing through a forest. They all had worked hard, disciplined their lives arduously. They were great seekers. One was a bhakti yogi – a follower on the path of devotion, love, prayer. Another was a gyan yogi – a follower on the path of knowledge, wisdom, intelligence, awareness. And the third was a karma yogi – a follower on the path of action, service, commitment.

They all had done all that a man can do, all that is humanly possible, but yet they had not experienced God. Now they were getting old, and getting a little bit frustrated too. Time was slipping out of their hands, and the goal was as far away as ever, and coldness was settling. But that day a miracle happened.

Suddenly, it started raining. They all had to rush into a small temple. The temple was very small; just four pillars and a roof, open from all sides, and the rain was really strong, and the wind was strong, and the wind was bringing rainwater inside the temple. It was getting wet almost over the place. So they all had to stand just in the middle, surrounding the Shivalinga – it must have been a Shiva temple. And as the water started coming more and more inwards, they had to come closer and closer.

They were coming so close that they were touching coach other. Suddenly, when they touched each other, they felt that they were not three there but four. Surprised, startled… and the fourth, and the presence of the fourth, was so strong that they asked each other, “What are you feeling?” And they all said, “Something strange is present here.”

Slowly, slowly, the presence became very, very clear and radiant. It was such ecstasy to see that presence. They all fell on their knees, and they asked the presence – because it was so clear that it was God and nobody else – they asked, “Why? We have worked our whole life and we could not even see a glimpse of you, and today what has happened? Why have you suddenly come?”

And God laughed and said, “Because you all are together here. Touching each other, you have become total. And I can only be available to you when you are total. Now, you are not fragments.

Up to now you have been fragments: one was working through the heart, another was working through the head, and the third was working through the body. You were fragmentary. And I am not available to the fragments: I am available only when somebody becomes total. In this moment, your energies met and mingled with each other.

“I have always followed you, but have remained invisible because the I can only see me when it is total. Now you can touch me! Now you can have me! You have been missing me for only one reason: you were adamant, stubborn; you were clinging to one fragment – and God is a totality.”

This is my message to you: A mystical experience is a total experience – of the body, of the mind, of the soul. All is involved in it. Nothing is outside it. So don’t reject anything in your life; let everything be absorbed. That’s why I say ’from sex to super consciousness’ – everything has to be absorbed in it, nothing has to be rejected. The person who rejects anything has rejected God himself – because God IS totality.

Accept all, appreciate all. Rejoice in all! And let your life become a total organic unity. When you are organically one, you will have that orgasmic, oceanic experience called the mystic experience. It is not an experience… you ARE it. The experience is not separate from it.

God is not seen: one becomes God.

Liberation does not happen to you: you become liberation. Nirvana is not something in your hands: you are Nirvana.

Enlightenment is not something that happens in you: you are it!

Hence, though we call it, ’spiritual experience’, it really cannot be called spiritual experience. There are sexual experiences, but no spiritual experiences. There are aesthetic experiences, but no spiritual experiences. There are many kinds of experiences, but spiritual, mystical experience is not one of them: it is absolutely a separate reality. It is all alone. It is a category in itself.

-Osho

From The Perfect Master, Vol. 1, Chapter Ten

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 online from Amazon.com and in the U.S. from OshoStore-Sedona and Osho Here and Now.