Freedom for Being – Osho

My Beloved One,

Love.

Freedom from becoming means freedom for BEING.

Becoming is desiring.

BEING is That-Which-Is.

Becoming is longing for the future.

BEING is to be in the present.

Becoming is mental.

BEING is existential.

That is why – becoming must cease for the BEING to

reveal itself.

Becoming is just like the smoke around the flame.

Or, just like the outer covering around the seed.

So, please let the smoke go for the flame to explode in its

complete glory and splendour.

And, let the seed die to its outer shell so that it may be

what it is in its inner most depth.

Acharya Rajneesh

7-1-1971

Taken from The Gateless Gate.

A New Awakening on the Horizon of Our Consciousness – Osho

A New Awakening on the Horizon of Our Consciousness

I believe that this talk was from a meditation camp held at Ranakput, Rajashthan in 1964. It would become part of the first book published of Osho’s talks. It has appeared with various titles: Sadhana Path, The Path of Self Realization and The Perfect Way.

The First Morning, June 4 1964

It is a delight to see you. In this solitary place you have come together to realize God, to find the truth, to know your own selves. But may I ask you a question? Is what you are seeking separate from you? You can search for someone who is away but how can you seek that which is your own self? Your own self cannot be sought in the sense in which everything else is sought because in this case there is no difference between the one who is seeking and the one who is being sought. You can seek out the world but you cannot seek your self. He who goes out in search of his self goes farther away from his self. It is important to understand this fact fully. Only then the search may be possible. If you want the material things of the world you have to look outside yourself, but if you want to find your self you have to be composed, unruffled, and to abandon all seeking. What you really are can only be seen in perfect calm and emptiness.

Remember that a search is also an excitement, a tension that it is a desire and a passion as well. But the soul cannot be realized through passion. This is the difficulty. Passion indicates that one desires to become something or to attain something, while the soul is already there within one. The soul is what I, myself, am. Passion and the soul lie in the opposite directions. They are opposite dimensions.

Therefore understand fully that the soul can be realized but it cannot be the object of desire. There cannot be any desire as such for the soul. All desire is worldly; no-desire is spiritual. It is desire and passion that make up the world. Whether this passion or desire is for money or for religion, for authority or for the realization of God, for worldly pleasures or for the liberation of moksha, it makes no difference. All passion is ignorance and bondage.

I do not ask you to desire the soul. I only ask you to comprehend the nature of desire. The understanding of passion frees one from passion because it reveals its painful character. The knowledge of pain is freedom from pain. Nobody, having known pain, can want it. And when there is no desire, when the mind is neither disturbed by passion nor searching for anything, then at that very moment, at that calm and tranquil moment you experience your real authentic being. The soul declares itself when passion disappears.

Therefore my friends, I ask you not to hanker after the soul but to understand desire itself and to rid yourselves of it. Then you will know and will realize the atman, the soul.

What is religion? Religion, dharma, has nothing to do with thoughts or with thinking. It has to do with no-thinking. Thinking is philosophy. It gives you results or conclusions but does not bring you satisfaction. Dharma is contentment. The process of logic is the doorway to thought while samadhi is the gateway to contentment.

Samadhi is the result of shunya and chaitanya, of emptiness and consciousness. The mind must be empty but watchful, and in that state of tranquility the door to truth opens. Truth is realized only out of emptiness and one’s whole life is subsequently transformed.

We reach the stage of samadhi through meditation, but what is generally understood as meditation is not true meditation. It too is thinking. Possibly the thoughts relate to the soul or to God but they are still thoughts. To what the thoughts relate makes no difference. In reality all thoughts pertain to another, to an outsider. They relate to what is not the self, to the material. There cannot be thought about the self because for thought to exist, two are needed. Therefore thought cannot take you beyond duality. If one is to realize this unity, to live in the self and to know it, then meditation, not thinking, is the way. Thought and meditation are in diametrically opposite directions. The former moves outward, the latter inward. Thought is the way to know the other; meditation, the way to know the self. But thought is generally taken for meditation. This is a very serious and widespread mistake and I want to caution you against this fundamental error. Meditation means becoming action-less. Meditation is not action but a state of being. It is being steady in one’s own self.

In action we come into contact with the outside world; in inaction, with ourselves. When we are not doing anything we become aware of what we are, but we are constantly involved in different activities and do not know ourselves. We do not even remember that we exist.

We are deeply preoccupied. At least the body rests but the mind does not rest at all. Awake, we think; asleep, we dream. Engrossed in these constant preoccupations and activities, we simply forget ourselves. In the press of our own affairs we lose ourselves. How strange this is! But it is a fact. We have become lost, not in the crowds of other people, but in our own thoughts, in our own dreams, in our own preoccupations and activities. We have become lost in ourselves. Meditation is the way to extricate ourselves from this self-created crowd, from this mental wanderlust.

By its nature meditation cannot involve any action. It is no-action. It is a term for an unoccupied mind. This is what I teach. It may look rather odd to say that I teach no-action and to say that we have gathered here to practice no-action but the language of man is very poor and very limited. Designed to express action only, it is never able to express the soul. How can that which is fashioned for speech express silence?

The word “meditation ”suggests that it is some sort of action but it is by no means action of any kind. It would be wrong of me to say I was “practicing” meditation; it would be correct to say I was “in” meditation. It is just like love. I am in love, but love cannot be manufactured. Hence I say meditation is a state of mind. It is of prime importance to be clear about this at the outset.

We have not gathered here to do anything but have come to experience that state where we simply are, where no action takes place, where there is no smoke to suggest action and only the burning flame of being remains, where only the self remains, where even the thought that “I am” no longer remains, where simply “being ”remains. This is shunya, emptiness. This is the point where we see not the world, but the truth. It is in this void, in this emptiness, that the wall that keeps you from knowing your self topples; that the curtains of thought rise and wisdom dawns. At this point you do not think, you know. Then there is vision; then there is realization.

But the words “vision” and “realization” are not quite appropriate because here there is no difference between the knower and the known, no difference between the subject and the object. Here there is neither the known nor the knower, simply knowing. In this context no word is suitable. “No-word” is the only appropriate word. If anyone asks me about this state I remain silent – or you might say I convey my answer through my silence.

Meditation is no-action. Action is something we may or may not do according to our wishes. But there is a difference between one’s nature and one’s actions. One’s nature is not action; it is neither doing nor non-doing. For example, understanding and sight are parts of our nature, parts of our being. Even if we do nothing, they will still be there. Nature is constantly present in us and only that which is constant and continuous can be called natural. Nature is not something of our making, it is our foundation. It is our selves. We do not create it, it is an intrinsic cohesion. We call it dharma. Dharma means our nature; it means pure existence.

This constant and continuous nature of ours is suppressed by the scattered direction of our actions. Just as the sea is covered by waves and the sun by clouds, we are covered by our own actions. The layer of activities on the surface hides that which is deep inside. Insignificant waves hide from our view the unfathomable depths of the ocean. How strange it is that the mighty is suppressed by the trivial, that a speck in the eye renders mountains invisible! But the sea does not cease to exist because of the waves. It is the soul of the waves and is present in them as well. Those who know even recognize it in the waves, but those who do not know must wait until the waves subside. They can only look at the ocean after the waves disperse.

We have to dive into this ocean, into nature itself. We have to forget about the waves and jump into the sea. We have to know our own depths where there is the sea without waves, where there is being without becoming.

This world of wave-less and motionless knowing is always present in us but we are not aware of it. We have turned our faces away from it – we look outside, we look at things, we look at the world. But bear one thing in mind – we are looking, and what is seen is of the world. But the one who sees is not the world, it is the self.

If sight is related to the object that is seen it is thought; if sight is free from the object that is seen and turns towards the seer himself it is meditation. Do you follow my distinction between thought and meditation?

Seeing is present in both thought and meditation but in the former it is objective and in the latter it is subjective. But whether we are in thought or in meditation, whether we are in action or in no-action, seeing is a constant factor. Awake, we see the world; asleep, we see dreams; in samadhi, we see our selves – but in each of these conditions there is seeing. Seeing is constant and continuous. It is our nature. It is never absent no matter what the condition.

Seeing is even present in fainting. After we come out of a faint we say, “I don’t know anything. I don’t know where I was.”Please do not think this is ignorance. This is also knowledge. If seeing had been totally absent, the knowledge of “I don’t know anything” would not have been possible, and in that case the time that passed by in the faint would not have existed for you. It would not have been part of your experience; it would not have left any trace on your memory. But you know you were in a state where you were not aware of anything. This too is knowledge. And seeing is also present here. The memory has not recorded any internal or external phenomena during this period, but our seeing has definitely noted, has definitely experienced this gap, this interval. And this experience of the interval, of the gap in the recording of events is later known to the memory as well. Similarly, during sleep, even when there are no dreams, seeing is always present. When we awaken in the morning we are able to say we had such a sound sleep that we did not even dream. This condition too has been observed.

You must realize from all of this that conditions change that the content of consciousness changes, but that seeing does not change. Everything in the realm of our experience changes; all things are in a flux. Seeing and seeing alone is ever-present. The seer alone is the witness to all this change, to all this fluidity. To know this constant and eternal seer is to know one’s self. All else is alien, the other. All else is samsara, the world.

This seer or witness cannot be attained or realized by any action, by any kind of worship or adoration, by any mantra or technique, because he is the witness of all these things as well. He is different and apart from all these things. Whatever can be seen or whatever can be done is different from and other than the witness. He cannot be realized by action but by no-action; not by effort but by stillness. He will be realized only when there is no activity, when there is no object to be seen, when only the seer or witness remains, when only seeing remains. When we are seeing but nothing is being seen, when we know but nothing is being known, then in this consciousness-devoid-of-content the knower of all is known. When there is no object to be seen the curtain in front of the seer drops away, and when there is no object to be known knowledge becomes aware of itself. When there are no waves we can see the ocean; when there are no clouds we can see the blue sky.

This ocean and this sky are there in everyone and if you wish to know this sky, this space, you can. There is a path that leads there and it is present in everyone, available to everyone. And each one knows how to walk on this path. But we only know how to walk on it in one direction. Have you ever thought of the fact that a road cannot lead in one direction only? Inevitably each road travels in two directions, in two opposite directions. Otherwise it is not a road; it cannot exist. The road that has brought you here to the seclusion of these hills is the same road that will take you back. There is only one road for coming as well as for going. The same road will serve both purposes. The road will be the same but the direction will not be the same.

The road that leads to samsara, to the world, is the same as the road that leads to the self. Only the direction is different. What has been in front of you for so long will now be behind you and you will have to direct your sight to what was at your back. The road is the same. We must simply turn, do an about-face. We must turn our backs on what we were facing and face that which was at our backs.

Please ask yourself where your face is turned now. What are you seeing? In what direction is the current of your vision, of your consciousness, flowing? Experience it. Observe it. You will find it is flowing outwardly. All your thoughts are about the world outside. All the time you are thinking about external things, about the world outside. When your eyes are open you see outside; when they are closed you see the same outside – because the forms and images of outside things that are imprinted on the mind rise up and surround us even when our eyes are closed. There is a world of objects outside and inside us there is another world of thoughts, the echo of outside things. Although it is inside this other world it is also outside, because the “I”, the ego, is outside as well. The witness also sees the “I”, the ego, so, therefore, that too is outside.

We are surrounded by objects and by thoughts, but you will see on deeper consideration that being encircled by objects is no hindrance on the path of self-realization, while being surrounded by thoughts is an obstacle. Can objects encircle the soul? Objects can only encircle objects. The soul is surrounded by thoughts. The current of vision, of consciousness, flows towards thoughts. Thoughts and thoughts alone are in front of us everywhere and our sight is curtained by them.

We must turn our faces from thoughts towards thoughtlessness. But this change of direction is revolutionary! How can it be done? First we must know how thoughts are born and only then can we stop them from coming into being. Generally so-called seekers begin to suppress thoughts before they understand how they are born. Some of them may go crazy trying but none of them will ever be free of thoughts. The suppression of thoughts does not help because new thoughts arise every moment. They are like those giants of mythology who, when one head was lopped off, grew ten more.

I do not ask you to destroy thoughts because they die of their own accord every moment. Thoughts are very short-lived; no thought endures for long. A particular thought does not last long but the thought-process does. Thoughts die one after another but the flow of thoughts persists. No sooner does one thought die than another takes its place. This process takes place very quickly and this is the problem. It is not the death of a thought but its quick rebirth that is the real problem. Therefore I do not ask you to kill thoughts. I want you to understand the process of their birth and how you can rid yourselves of this process. One who comprehends the process of the birth of thoughts can easily be freed from it. But one who does not understand the process goes on creating fresh thoughts and at the same time tries to resist them. Instead of thoughts coming to an end, the consequence is that the person fighting them breaks down himself.

Again I repeat: thoughts are not the problem but the birth of thoughts is the problem. How they are born is the problem. If we can stop their coming into being, if we can exercise thought birth-control, the thoughts that have already been born will disappear in a moment. Thoughts die out every second but their total destruction does not happen because new thoughts spring up incessantly.

I say it is not that we have to destroy thoughts but that we have to stop their coming into being. Stopping their birth is as good as their destruction. We all know that the mind is fickle. But what does this mean? It means that no thought endures for long. It is born and it passes away. If we can only stop its birth we will be saved from the violence involved in killing it and it will die of its own accord.

How is thought born? The conception and birth of a thought is the result of our reaction to the outside world. There is a world of events and objects outside and our reaction to this world is alone responsible for the birth of thoughts. I look at a flower. Looking is not thinking and if I simply go on looking no thought will be created. But if as soon as I look at it I say, “It is a very beautiful flower,” a thought has been born. If on the other hand I continue looking at the flower I will experience and enjoy its beauty, but no thought will be born. But as soon as we have an experience we begin to express it in words. With this expression of experience through the symbols of words, thought comes into being.

I am looking at you, and if I just keep on looking at you without expressing it in words, what will happen? As you are now you cannot even imagine what will happen. There will be a great revolution, the likes of which has never been seen before. Words get in the way and stop that revolution from taking place. The birth of thoughts hinders that revolution. If I keep on looking at you and do not give it any expression in words, if I simply keep on looking I will find during the process that a wonderful and divine grace descends upon me and that a quality of emptiness, of the void, is spreading all around. And in this emptiness, in this absence of words, the direction of consciousness takes a new turning and then I do not see only you but even the one who watches over us all gradually begins to appear. There is a new awakening on the horizon of our consciousness, as if we are waking from a dream, and our minds are filled with pure light and infinite peace.

In the final analysis I wish to say that in this Sadhana Camp we must make this one experiment – and that is not to allow our vision to be smothered by words. I call this the experiment of right-mindfulness. You must remember you must stay aware so that words are not formulated. It is possible to stop words evolving because they are just a habit of ours after all. A newborn child views the world without the intermediary of words. This is pure, direct vision. Later he gradually forms the habit of using words because words are helpful and useful in his external life and in the world outside. But what is useful in the outer life becomes an impediment in knowing the inner life. It is because of this that even the old must reawaken in themselves a child’s capacity of pure vision in order that they may know their selves. They knew the world with the help of words and now they must come to know their selves with the help of the void, of emptiness.

What are we to do in this experiment? We will sit quietly, keeping the body relaxed and the spine erect. We will stop all movement of the body. We will breathe slowly and deeply and without any excitement. We will silently observe our own breathing and we will listen to any sounds falling on our ears from outside. We will not react in any way; we will not give them a second’s thought. We will let go into a state of mind where, without the interference of words, we will simply be a witness. We will stand at a distance and watch whatever is taking place. Don’t try to concentrate at all. Simply be quiet and watch whatever is happening. Listen. Just close your eyes and listen. Listen quietly in silence. Listen to the chirping off the sparrows, to the swaying of the trees in the wind, to the cry of a child, to the sound of the water wheel at the well. Simply listen. And do nothing else.

First, within yourself, you will experience a throbbing of the breath and a beating of the heart – and then a new kind of quiet and peace will descend upon you. You will find that although there is noise outside there is silence inside. You will find you have entered a new dimension of peace. Then you will find, that there are no thoughts, that only pure consciousness remains.

And in this medium of emptiness your attention turns towards the place that is your real abode. From the outside you turn towards your home.

Your vision has led you inwards. Simply keep watching. Watch your thoughts, your breath and the movement at the navel. No reaction. The result will be something that is not a creation of the mind that is not of your creation at all. This is in fact your being, your existence. This is the cohesion that sustains us all. It reveals itself unto us and then one’s own self, the biggest surprise of all, appears.

I recall a tale. A sadhu, a seeker, was once standing on a hill. It was early morning and the sun was beginning to shine. Some friends were out for a walk. They saw the sadhu, standing all alone. They asked each other, “What can this sadhu be doing here?”One of them said, “Perhaps his cow often gets lost in the jungle and he is standing on the hill looking for her.”The other friends did not agree. Another said, “From the way he is standing, he does not seem to be looking for something. He rather seems to be waiting for somebody, perhaps a friend who accompanied him and has been left behind somewhere.”But the others did not agree with this either. A third one said, “He is neither searching for any one nor waiting for anyone. He is absorbed in the contemplation of God.”

They could not agree so they approached the sadhu himself to clarify the situation. The first one asked, “Are you looking for your lost cow?” The sadhu replied, “No.” Another asked, “Are you waiting for someone then?” To this he answered, “No. ”The third one asked, “Are you contemplating God?” Again the sadhu replied in the negative. All the three were amazed. Together, they asked him, “Then what are you doing here?” The sadhu said, “I am doing nothing. I am just standing. I am just being.”

We have to exist this simply. We have to do nothing. We have to give up everything and just be. Then something that cannot be put into words will happen. The experience that will come to pass cannot be expressed in words. It is the epitome of experiences. It is the realization of the truth, of one’s self, of God.

-Osho

Taken from the edition titled The Perfect Way.

The Light That Remains Forever – Osho

The Light that Remains Forever

Does the Being, or Self, in the person die with the death of the person; or does it live beyond death in another body?

The question is a little complicated.

First you have to understand that your personality is not your reality; it is given by the culture, by the society.

Individuality is yours, but personality is not yours.

As personality you are always dead; only as individuality are you alive. But to be an individual you have to rebel against personality and against all those people who are forcing a certain personality on you.

Each child is born with a certain potential to be – and each society tries to make him something else.

I have heard about a man who was celebrating the golden jubilee of his marriage. All his friends, relatives, acquaintances, had gathered. There was much joy, laughter. But suddenly they realized that the man was missing. They could not understand where he had gone. They looked in the garden and he was sitting in the shadows, in darkness, by the side of a tree, very sad.

His friends said, “This is strange. You have called all of us to celebrate, and you are sitting here in such sadness as if somebody has died! What is the problem?”

He said, “The problem is… This woman that I married has tortured me so much that twenty-five years ago I enquired of my attorney, ‘If I shoot her what will be the result?’ and he said, ‘Are you mad? If you shoot her you will get twenty-five years in jail!’ I am feeling sad because today I would have been free. That idiot attorney has died; otherwise I would have killed him! He made me afraid.”

A man has to live with a woman he does not love, which is simply misery. A woman has to live with a man… which is simply misery, hell. A man has to work in a certain profession he hates. Everybody becomes something that he does not like. This is your personality. Society distracts everybody from his natural individuality and makes him something other than he was destined to be.

So the first thing to be understood is that you are not a person, you are not a personality. The word ‘person’ comes from Greek drama. In Greek drama the actors used masks, and the mask… you could not see the person’s real face; you could only hear his sound. Sona means sound. Persona means you don’t know who is speaking; you just hear the sound, the face is missing. The word ‘personality’ comes from that Greek drama.

Everybody is wearing a mask. You can hear the sound but you can’t see the face; you can’t see the individual. So the first thing: you are not a ‘person’. If you are a person, you are already dead. If you are only a personality, you have dragged yourself from the cradle to the grave but you never lived. You live only when you are an individuality – when you assert yourself against every tradition, every religion, every past that wants you to be someone other than existence wants you to be. Then you live.

Again I am reminded: a great surgeon I used to know – perhaps he was the most famous surgeon in India – was retiring, and all his friends, his colleagues, had given him a party, a farewell party, but he was very sad. I asked him, “Why are you sad? You should be happy: you are the topmost surgeon in the whole country.”

He said, “You don’t understand. I never wanted to become a surgeon in the first place, so who cares that I am the topmost surgeon? I hate to hear that! I wanted to become a musician, but my parents forced me to become a surgeon – against my will I became a surgeon. By chance I became the topmost surgeon; perhaps I would not have been able to become the topmost musician. I am rich, I have everything, I have respectability, but that does not help me to be happy.

“Even if I had remained a beggar, as a musician I would have been blissful because I would have been myself. This surgeon seems to be somebody else; it is a role that I have played, but it is not me. These people are celebrating, and I am crying within myself that my whole life is lost.”

So first, you are not a ‘person’; otherwise you are dead before death. And there are millions of people who die thirty, forty, or fifty years before they actually die. You are an individual, and only individuality is capable of knowing your real self. Personality has no self – only an ego, as false as personality. Individuality has a self, a soul. The individual is a living principle of life.

If you know life you will never ask this kind of question. Knowing life authentically means you also know that it is immortal. The knowledge of its immortality is intrinsic. It is not something informed, from outside. Just living your true being in totality you slowly, slowly become aware of the immortal current of life within you. You know the body will die, but this soul, which is life’s whole essence, cannot die.

In existence nothing is destructible.

And it is not something to believe in, it is a scientific truth that you cannot destroy anything. You cannot destroy even a small piece of stone. Whatever you do it will remain in some form or other.

Science enquires into the objective world and finds that even objective reality is immortal. Religion works exactly like science in the inner world and finds the dancing life is intrinsically immortal.

It will be good to remember Socrates at this point because he was not a man to believe anything. If you had asked him whether your soul would survive after bodily death he would say, “Let me first die – because unless I die, how can I say?” And the day he was given poison is one of the most significant days in the history of man. His disciples were sitting around him and he was lying down. He told his disciples, “I will tell you what is happening. As long as I can, I will go on informing you.”

Then he said, “Up to my knees, my legs are dead. Please somebody pinch my legs so I can know whether I can feel it or not.” Somebody pinched his legs. He said, “I cannot feel it; the legs have died. But remember one thing: I am as alive as I ever was. The death of the legs has not cut a part of my life; my life is as whole as it ever was.” Then all of the legs became dead, half of the body. And he said, “Half of my body is dead, but I am whole, as whole as ever.”

Then his hands became dead and he said, “I am still here and I am still whole. Perhaps now my heart will stop, but I can say to you that even though I may not be able to inform you, I will remain, because if all these parts are gone and I am whole, then it doesn’t matter: the heart is only a part.”

And when he died his face was so delighted, so joyous, that Plato, his disciple, remembers, “We have never seen his face so full of light, so radiant. Perhaps the last moment when the soul is leaving the body is just like the sunset when the sun is going down and the whole sky becomes so beautiful and radiant.”

It is not a question of belief. I am not a believer in anything, so I will not say to you to believe me that the soul is immortal. But it is my experience that it is immortal because I can remember my past lives, and that is a solid proof that there are going to be future lives. I can teach you techniques for remembering past lives and that will become a solid proof for you that you have a future. You have an eternity of past and an eternity of future.

You have always been here and you will always be here.

But first drop your fake personality.

Grow into your authentic individuality.

Live the way existence wanted you to live. Your very life should be so intense and so total that you burn your life’s torch from both ends. In that very intensity you will know that you have touched something of eternity. And if you have known it in your life, in your death you will find a deeper confirmation of the fact.

People who live in personality always die unconscious. They have never lived. They don’t know what consciousness is, so before death they become unconscious. That’s why we don’t  remember our past lives. You were unconscious, and death happened in your unconsciousness.

But if you live consciously, as an individual, then you will die consciously, the way Socrates is dying – so conscious to the last breath. And this memory will be with you in the next life too.

In the East there are three great religions: Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism. They disagree on every point – their philosophies are different about everything – but on one point they agree, and that is the eternal existence of the soul, because it is not a question of theoretical discussion, it is a question of existential experience. You can’t disagree about it – it is exactly so.

Against these three religions in the East, outside of India there are three religions: Judaism, Christianity, and Mohammedanism. They all believe in one life, and that simply shows their poverty. They have not explored deeply enough to find past lives, and they cannot guarantee anything about the future. These three religions born outside India are superficial. Their work is not in-depth research.

But in India for ten thousand years thousands of people have entered into self-realization and have found that there is some light that remains forever. It goes on moving from one body to another body but is indestructible.

I will not tell you to believe it. I will only tell you to experiment. I am against all beliefs, because every belief destroys you, destroys your thinking. I am in favor of experimenting, and there are techniques available.

That has been my whole life’s work – to make those techniques available to anybody who really wants to search and to find, to one who is not only a curious person but is a seeker who is ready to risk everything for the search. And it is a search for which you need to risk everything because you are going to find the greatest treasure.

-Osho

Taken from The Path of the Mystic, Chapter 1.

An audio file of this discourse can be downloaded from: http://www.osho.com/Main.cfm?Area=Shop&Language=English

Both audio and pdf files can be downloaded from: http://www.oshoworld.com/e-books/eng_discourses.asp

Witnessing is the Beginning, No-Mind is the Fulfillment – Osho

How does watching lead to no-mind? I am more and more able to watch my body, my thoughts and feelings and this feels beautiful. But moments of no thoughts are few and far between. When I hear you saying “Meditation is witnessing,” I feel I understand. But when you talk about no-mind, it doesn’t sound easy at all. Would you please comment?

Prem Anubuddha, meditation covers a very long pilgrimage. When I say “meditation is witnessing”, it is the beginning of meditation. And when I say “meditation is no-mind,” it is the completion of the pilgrimage. Witnessing is the beginning, and no-mind is the fulfillment. Witnessing is the method to reach the no-mind. Naturally you will feel witnessing is easier. It is close to you.

But witnessing is only like seeds, and then is the long waiting period; not only waiting, but trusting that this seed is going to sprout, that it is going to become a bush; that one day the spring will come and the bush will have flowers. No-mind is the last stage of flowering.

Sowing the seed is of course very easy; it is within your hands. But bringing the flowers is beyond you. You can prepare the whole ground, but the flowers will come on their own accord; you cannot manage to force them to come. The spring is beyond your reach – but if your preparation is perfect, spring comes; that is absolutely guaranteed.

It is perfectly good, the way you are moving. Witnessing is the path and you are starting to feel once in a while a thoughtless moment. These are glimpses of no-mind… but just for a moment.

Remember one fundamental law: that which can exist just for a moment can also become eternal. You are given not two moments together, but always one moment. And if you can transform one moment into a thoughtless state, you are learning the secret. Then there is no hindrance, no reason why you cannot change the second moment, which will also come alone, with the same potential and the same capacity.

If you know the secret, you have the master key which can open every moment into a glimpse of no-mind. No-mind is the final stage, when mind disappears forever and the thoughtless gap becomes your intrinsic reality. If these few glimpses are coming, they show you are on the right path and you are using the right method.

But don’t be impatient. Existence needs immense patience. The ultimate mysteries are opened only to those who have immense patience.

I am reminded…

In old Tibet it was customary, respectful, that every family should contribute to the great experiment of expanding consciousness. So the first child of each family was given to the monasteries to be trained in meditation. Perhaps no country has done such a vast experiment in consciousness.

The destruction of Tibet at the hands of communist China is one of the greatest calamities that could have happened to humanity. It is not only a question of a small country, it is a question of a great experiment that was going on for centuries in Tibet.

The first child was given to the monasteries when he was very small, five or at the most six years old. But Tibet knew that children can learn witnessing better than grown ups. The grown-ups are already utterly spoiled. The child is innocent and yet the slate of his mind is empty; to teach him emptiness is absolutely easy.

But the entrance of a child into a monastery was very difficult, particularly for a small child. I am reminded of one incident… I am telling you only one; there would have been hundreds of incidents like it. It is bound to be so.

A small child, six years old, is leaving. His mother is crying, because life in a monastery for a small child is going to be so arduous. The father tells the child, “Don’t look back. It is a question of our family’s respectability. Not even once has a child in the whole history of our family ever looked back. Whatever is the test to be given for entrance into the monastery – even if your life is at risk, don’t look back. Don’t think of me or your mother and her tears.

“We are sending you for the ultimate experiment in human consciousness with great joy, although the separation is painful. But we know you will pass through all the tests; you are our blood, and of course you will keep the dignity of your family.”

The small child rides on the horse with a servant riding on another horse. A tremendous desire arises in him when the road turns, just to have a look again back to the family house, its garden.

The father must be standing there, the mother must be crying… but he remembers that the father has said, “Don’t look back.”

And he does not look back. With tears in his eyes, he turns with the road. Now he cannot see his house anymore and one never knows how long it will take – perhaps years and years – until he will be able to see his father and mother and his family again.

He reaches the monastery. At the gate of the monastery the abbot meets him, receives him gracefully, as if he is a grownup, bows down to him as he bows down to the abbot. And the abbot says, “Your first test will be to sit outside the gate with closed eyes, unmoving, unless you are called in.”

The small child sits at the gate, outside the gate with closed eyes. Hours pass… and he cannot even move. There are flies sitting in his face, but he cannot remove them. It is a question of the dignity that the abbot has shown to him. He does not think any more like a child; so respected, he has to fulfill his family’s longing, the abbot’s expectations.

The whole day passes, and even other monks in the monastery start feeling sorry for the child.

Hungry, thirsty… he is simply waiting. They start feeling that the child is small, but has great courage and guts.

Finally, by the time the sun is setting, the whole day has passed; the abbot comes and takes the child in. He says, “You have passed the first test, but there are many more peaks ahead. I respect your patience, being such a small child. You remained unmoving; you did not open your eyes. You did not lose courage; you trusted that whenever the time is right you will be called in.”

And then years of training in witnessing. The child was only allowed to see his parents again after perhaps ten years, twenty years had elapsed. But the criterion was that until he experiences no-mind, he cannot be allowed to see his parents, his family. Once he achieves no-mind, then he can move back into the world. Now there is no problem.

Once a man is in a state of no-mind, nothing can distract him from his being. There is no power bigger than the power of no-mind. No harm can be done to such a person. No attachment, no greed, no jealousy, no anger, nothing can arise in him. No-mind is absolutely a pure sky without any clouds.

Anubuddha, you say “How does watching lead to no-mind?”

There is an intrinsic law: thoughts don’t have their own life. They are parasites; they live on your identifying with them. When you say, “I am angry,” you are pouring life energy into anger, because you are getting identified with anger.

But when you say, “I am watching anger flashing on the screen of the mind within me” you are not anymore giving any life, any juice, any energy to anger. You will be able to see that because you are not identified, the anger is absolutely impotent, has no impact on you, does not change you, does not affect you. It is absolutely hollow and dead. It will pass on and it will leave the sky clean and the screen of the mind empty.

Slowly, slowly you start getting out of your thoughts. That’s the whole process of witnessing and watching. In other words – George Gurdjieff used to call it non-identification – you are no more identifying with your thoughts. You are simply standing aloof and away – indifferent, as if they might be anybody’s thoughts. You have broken your connections with them. Only then can you watch them.

Watching needs a certain distance. If you are identified, there is no distance, they are too close. It is as if you are putting the mirror too close to your eyes: you cannot see your face. A certain distance is needed; only then can you see your face in the mirror.

If thoughts are too close to you, you cannot watch. You become impressed and colored by your thoughts: anger makes you angry, greed makes you greedy, lust makes you lustful, because there is no distance at all. They are so close that you are bound to think that you and your thoughts are one.

Watching destroys this oneness and creates a separation. The more you watch, the bigger is the distance. The bigger the distance, the less energy your thoughts are getting from you. And they don’t have any other source of energy. Soon they start dying, disappearing. In these disappearing moments you will have the first glimpses of no-mind.

That is what you are experiencing. You say, “I am more and more able to watch my body, my thoughts and feelings, and this feels beautiful.” This is just the beginning. Even the beginning is immensely beautiful – just to be on the right path, even without taking a single step, will give you immense joy for no reason at all.

And once you start moving on the right path, your blissfulness, your beautiful experiences are going to become more and more deep, more and more wide, with new nuances, with new flowers, with new fragrances.

You say, “But moments of no thoughts are few and far between.” It is a great achievement, because people don’t know even a single gap. Their thoughts are always in a rush hour, thoughts upon thoughts, bumper-to-bumper, the line continues, whether you are awake or asleep. What you call your dreams are nothing but thoughts in the form of pictures…because the unconscious mind does not know alphabetical languages. There is no school, no training institute which teaches the unconscious language.

The unconscious is very primitive; it is just like a small child. Have you looked at the books of your small children? If you want to teach the child, you have to make a big picture first. So you will see, in children’s’ books, pictures, colorful pictures with very little writing. The child is more interested in the pictures. He is primitive; he understands the language of pictures.

Slowly, slowly you make the pictures and the language associated – whenever he sees the mango he knows, “It is a mango.” And he starts learning that underneath the picture of the mango there is a certain word describing it. His interest is in the mango, but the word ’mango’ slowly becomes associated. As the child grows, pictures will become smaller and language will become more. By the time he enters the university, pictures will have disappeared from the book; only language will remain.

By the way, it reminds me to tell you that television has taken humanity back into a primitive stage, because people are again looking at pictures. There is a danger in the future – it is already apparent that people have stopped reading great literature. Who bothers to read, when you can see the film on the TV? This is a dangerous phenomenon, because there are things which cannot be reproduced in pictures. Great literature can be only partially reproduced in pictures. The danger is that people will start forgetting the language and its beauty and its magic, and they will again become primitives, watching the television.

Now the average American is watching television for seven and a half hours every day. This is going to destroy something which we have achieved with great difficulty. Now, this man who is watching television for seven and half hours per day…you cannot expect him to read Shakespeare, Kalidas, Rabindranath Tagore, Herman Hesse, Martin Buber or Jean Paul Sartre.

The greater the literature, the less is the possibility of putting it into pictures.

Pictures are colorful, exciting, easy, but they are no comparison to language. The future has to be protected from many things. Computers can destroy can destroy people’s memory systems, because there will be no need – you can keep a small computer the size of a cigarette packet in your pocket. It contains everything that you will ever need to know. Now there is no need to have your own memory; just push a button and the computer is ready to give you any information you need.

The computer can destroy the whole memory system of humanity that has been developed for centuries with great difficulty. Television can take away all great literature, and the possibility of people like Shelley or Byron being born again in the world. These are great inventions, but nobody has looked at the implications. They will reduce the whole of humanity into a retardedness.

Anubuddha, what you are feeling is a great indication that you are on the right path. It is always a question for the seeker whether he is moving in the right direction or not. There is no security, no insurance, no guarantee. All the dimensions are open; how are you going to choose the right one?

These are the ways and the criteria of how one has to choose. If you move on any path, any methodology and it brings joy to you, more sensitivity, more watchfulness and gives a feeling of immense well-being – this is the only criterion that you are going on the right path. If you become more miserable, more angry, more egoist, more greedy, more lustful – those are the indications you are moving on a wrong path.

On the right path your blissfulness is going to grow more and more every day, and your experiences of beautiful feelings will become tremendously psychedelic, more colorful – colors that you have never seen in the world, fragrances that you have never experienced in the world. Then you can walk on the path without any fear that you can go wrong.

These inner experiences will keep you always on the right path. Just remember that if they are growing, that means you are moving. Now you have only a few moments of thoughtlessness… It is not a simple attainment; it is a great achievement, because people in their whole lives know not even a single moment when there is no thought.

These gaps will grow.

As you will become more and more centered, more and more watchful, these gaps will start growing bigger. And the day is not far away – if you go on moving without looking back, without going astray – if you keep going straight, the day is not far away when you will feel for the first time that the gaps have become so big that hours pass and not even a single thought arises. Now you are having bigger experiences of no-mind.

The ultimate achievement is when twenty-four hours a day you are surrounded with no-mind.

That does not mean that you cannot use your mind; that is a fallacy propounded by those who know nothing about no-mind. No-mind does not mean that you cannot use the mind; it simply means that the mind cannot use you.

No-mind does not mean that the mind is destroyed. No-mind simply means that the mind is put aside. You can bring it into action any moment you need to communicate with the world. It will be your servant. Right now it is your master. Even when you are sitting alone it goes on, yakkety-yak, yakkety-yak – and you cannot do anything, you are so utterly helpless.

No-mind simply means that the mind has been put in its right place. As a servant, it is a great instrument; as a master, it is very unfortunate. It is dangerous. It will destroy your whole life.

Mind is only a medium for when you want to communicate with others. But when you are alone, there is no need of the mind. So whenever you want to use it, you can use it.

And remember one thing more: when the mind remains silent for hours, it becomes fresh, young, more creative, more sensitive, rejuvenated through rest.

Ordinary people’s minds start somewhere around three or four years of age, and then they go on continuing for seventy years, eighty years without any holiday. Naturally they cannot be very creative. They are utterly tired – and tired with rubbish. Millions of people in the world live without any creativity. Creativity is one of the greatest blissful experiences. But their minds are so tired… they are not in a state of overflowing energy.

The man of no-mind keeps the mind in rest, full of energy, immensely sensitive, ready to jump into action the moment it is ordered. It is not a coincidence that the people who have experienced no-mind, their words start having a magic of their own. When they use their mind, it has a charisma, it has a magnetic force. It has tremendous spontaneity and the freshness of the dewdrops in the early morning before the sun rises. And the mind is nature’s most evolved medium of expression and creativity.

So the man of meditation – or in other words, the man of no-mind – changes even his prose into poetry. Without any effort, his words become so full of authority that they don’t need any arguments.

They become their own arguments. The force that they carry becomes a self-evident truth. There is no need for any other support from logic or from scriptures. The words of a man of no-mind have an intrinsic certainty about them. If you are ready to receive and listen, you will feel it in your heart: The self-evident truth.

Look down the ages: Gautam Buddha has never been contradicted by any of his disciples; neither has Mahavira, nor Moses, nor Jesus. There was something in their very words, in their very presence that convinced you. Without any effort of converting you, you are converted. None of the great masters have been missionaries; they have never tried to convert anyone, but they have converted millions.

It is a miracle – but the miracle consists of a rested mind, of a mind which is always full of energy and is used only once in a while.

When I speak to you, I have to use the mind. When I am sitting in my room almost the whole day, I forget all about the mind. I am just a pure silence… and meanwhile the mind is resting. When I speak to you, those are the only moments when I use the mind. When I am alone, I am utterly alone, and there is no need to use the mind.

Anubuddha, you say, “When I hear you say ’Meditation is witnessing,’ I feel I understand. But when you talk about no-mind, it doesn’t sound easy at all.”

How can it sound easy? – Because it is your future possibility. Meditation you have started; it may be in the beginning stages, but you have a certain experience of it that makes you understand me. But if you can understand meditation, don’t be worried at all.

Meditation surely leads to no-mind, just as every river moves towards the ocean without any maps, without any guides. Every river without exception finally reaches to the ocean. Every meditation, without exception finally reaches to the state of no-mind.

But naturally, when the Ganges is in the Himalayas wandering in the mountains and in the valleys, it has no idea what the ocean is, cannot conceive of the existence of the ocean – but it is moving towards the ocean, because water has the intrinsic capacity of always finding the lowest place. And the oceans are the lowest place… so rivers are born on the peaks of the Himalayas and start moving immediately towards lower spaces, and finally they are bound to find the ocean.

Just the reverse is the process of meditation: it moves upwards to higher peaks, and the ultimate peak is no-mind. No-mind is a simple word, but it exactly means enlightenment, liberation, freedom from all bondage, experience of deathlessness and immortality.

Those are big words and I don’t want you to be frightened, so I use a simple word, no-mind. You know the mind… you can conceive of a state when this mind will be non-functioning.

Once this mind is non-functioning, you become part of the mind of the cosmos, the universal mind. When you are part of the universal mind your individual mind functions as a beautiful servant. It has recognized the master, and it brings news from the universal mind to those who are still chained by the individual mind.

When I am speaking to you, it is in fact the universe using me. My words are not my words; they belong to the universal truth. That is their power, that is their charisma, that is their magic.

-Osho

From Satyam Shivam Sundram, Chapter Seven

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

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Witnessing is Enough – Osho

I have always heard you say, “Stop doing; watch.” Several times lately I’ve heard you say that the mind should be the servant instead of our master. It feels that there is nothing to do except watch. But the question still arises: Is there anything to do with this unruly servant but to watch?

Prem Niren, there is nothing else to do with this unruly servant but just to watch. Apparently it appears too simple a solution for too complex a problem, but these are part of the mysteries of existence. The problem may be too complex; the solution can be very simple.

Watching, witnessing, being aware seem to be small words to solve the whole complexity of mind. Millions of years of heritage, tradition, conditioning, prejudice – how will they disappear just by watching?

But they do disappear, because as Gautam Buddha used to say, “If the lights of the house are on, thieves don’t come close to that house, knowing that the master is awake.” Because the light is showing from the windows, from the doors, you can see that the light is on and it is not the time to enter into the house. When the lights are off, thieves are attracted to the house. Darkness becomes an invitation. As Gautam Buddha used to say, the same is the situation about your thoughts, imaginations, dreams, anxieties, your whole mind.

If the witness is there, the witness is almost like the light; these thieves start dispersing. And if these thieves find there is no witness, they start calling their brothers and cousins and everybody, “Come on.”

It is as simple a phenomenon as the light. The moment you bring the light in, the darkness disappears. You don’t ask, “Is just light enough for darkness to disappear?” or, “When we have brought the light, will we have to do something more for the darkness to disappear?”

No, just the presence of the light is the absence of the darkness, and the absence of the light is the presence of darkness. The presence of the witness is the absence of the mind, and the absence of the witness is the presence of the mind.

So the moment you start watching, slowly, slowly as your watcher will become stronger your mind will become weaker. The moment it realizes that the watcher has come to maturity, the mind immediately submits as a beautiful servant. It is a mechanism. If the master has arrived, then the machine can be used. If the master is not there or is fast asleep, then the machine goes on working things, does whatsoever it can on its own. There is nobody to give orders, there is nobody to say, “No, stop. That should not to be done.”

Then the mind becomes slowly convinced that it is the master itself. And for thousands of years it has remained your master, so when you try to be a witness it fights, because it has completely forgotten that it is only a servant. You have been so long absent that it does not recognize you. Hence the struggle between the witness and the thoughts.

But final victory is going to be yours, because nature and existence both want you to be the master and the mind to be the servant. Then things are in harmony. Then the mind cannot go wrong. Then everything is existentially relaxed, silent, flowing towards its destiny.

Prem Niren, you don’t have to do anything else but to watch.

Paddy bought a parrot at an auction. He asked the auctioneer, “I have spent a great deal of money on this parrot – are you sure he can talk?”

The auctioneer replied, “Of course I am sure; he was bidding against you.”

Such is the unawareness of the mind, and such are the stupidities of the mind. I have heard that the Irish atheists, seeing that the theists have started a dial-a-prayer service, also started one – although they are atheists. But the competitive mind… They have also started a dial-a-prayer service; when you phone them up, nobody answers.

Two tramps were sitting by a campfire one night. One of them was very depressed. “You know Jim,” he mused, “the life of a tramp is not as great as it is made out to be: Nights on park benches, or in a cold barn; traveling on foot and always dodging the police; being kicked from one town to another; wondering where your next meal is coming from; being sneered at by your fellow man…” His voice trailed off and he sighed heavily.

“Well,” said the other tramp, “if that is how you feel about it, why don’t you go and find yourself a job?”

“What!” said the first tramp in amazement, “and admit that I’m a failure?”

Mind has become accustomed to being a master. It will take a little time to bring it to its senses. Witnessing is enough. It is a very silent process, but the consequences are tremendously great. There is no other method which can be better than witnessing as far as dispersing the darkness of the mind is concerned.

In fact there are one hundred and twelve methods of meditation; I have gone through all those methods – and not intellectually. It took me years to go through each method and to find out its very essence, and after going through one hundred and twelve methods I was amazed that the essence is witnessing. The methods’ non-essentials are different, but the center of each method is witnessing.

Hence I can say to you, Niren, there is only one meditation in the whole world and that is the art of witnessing. It will do everything – the whole transformation of your being. It will open the doors of satyam, shivam, sundram: the truth, the godliness and the beauty of it all.

-Osho

Taken from Satyam Shivam Sundram, Chapter 22.

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

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Godliness is Within Your Reach – Osho

You said the other day to ignore negative mind contents and not give energy to them. I find it difficult to stay on the razor’s edge of ignoring without falling into suppressing and thus putting things back into the unconscious. Can you please tell me how to discriminate between these two?

You already know it. Your question contains the discrimination. You know perfectly well when you are ignoring and when you are suppressing.

Ignoring simply means not paying attention to it. Something is there; let it be there. You are unconcerned this way or that, whether it should remain or go. You have no judgment. You have simply accepted it is there, and it is none of your business whether it should be there or not.

In suppressing you are taking an active part. You are wrestling with that energy, you are forcing it into the unconscious. You are trying not to be able to see it anywhere. You want to know that it is no longer there.

For example, anger is there. Just sit silently and watch that the anger is there. Let it remain. How long can it remain? Do you think it is something immortal, eternal? Just as it has come, it will be gone. You simply wait. You don’t do anything about it, for or against. If you do something for, you are expressing it, and when you are expressing it you are getting into a mess because the other person may not be a meditator – most probably he will not be. He will also react with greater rage. Now you are in a vicious circle.

You are angry, you made the other angry, and you go on becoming angry with each other more and more. Sooner or later your anger will become almost a solid rock of hatred, violence, and while you are moving in this vicious circle you are losing consciousness. You may do something for which you will repent later on. You may murder, you may kill or at least you may attempt to. And after the episode is over you may wonder: “I had never thought that I could murder somebody!” But you created the energy, and energy can do anything. Energy is neutral: it can create, it can destroy; it can light your house, it can set your house on fire.

Ignoring means you are not doing anything about it. The anger is there. Just take note of it, that anger is there, just the way you see a tree is there outside. Do you have to do something about it?

A cloud is moving in the sky; do you have to do something about it? Anger is also a cloud moving on the screen of your mind. So watch; let it move.

And it is not a question of being on a razor’s edge. Don’t make small things into big things. This is a very small thing and can be done very simply; you just have to accept that it is there. Don’t try to remove it, don’t try to act upon it, and don’t feel ashamed that you are angry. Even if you feel ashamed, you have started acting. Can’t you be a non-doer?

Sadness is there, anger is there: just watch. And be ready for a surprise; if you can watch, and your watchfulness is uncontaminated, is pure – you are really not doing anything but simply looking – the anger will slowly pass by. The sadness will disappear, and you will be left with such a clean consciousness.

You were not so clean before because the possibility of anger was there. Now that possibility has become actual and it is gone with the anger. You are far cleaner. You were not so silent, so peaceful; now you are. Sadness had taken up some energy. It would not have allowed you a deep sense of happiness, it would have clouded your consciousness.

And all the other negative emotions are eating your energy. They are all there because you have repressed them, and they are repressed so you don’t let them out. You have closed the door and you have put them in the basement; they cannot escape. Even if they want to escape, you won’t let them out. And they will disturb your whole life. In the night they will become nightmares, ugly dreams. In the day they will affect your actions.

And there is always a possibility that some emotion may become too big to control. You have been repressing and repressing and repressing, and the cloud is becoming bigger. And a point comes when you cannot control it anymore. Then something happens, which the world will see as you doing, but only those who know can see you are not doing it: you are under a very great impulsive force. You are behaving like a robot; you are helpless.

You are murdering, you are raping, you are doing something ugly, but in fact you are not doing it.

You have collected all that material which has become so powerful that now it can force you to do things – things in spite of you, things against you. Even while you are doing it you know it is not right. You know, “I should not be doing it. Why am I doing it?” but still you will do it.

Many murderers in many courts of the world have said very honestly that they have not murdered.

But the court cannot believe it, the law cannot believe it. I can believe it – because the courts and the law are all primitive. They have not come to maturity. They are not yet psychologically based.

They are simply the revenge of the society – put into beautiful words, but it is really nothing but the same thing the man has done… he has murdered, now the society wants to murder him.

He was alone. But the society has the law, the court, the police, the jail. And it will go through a long ritual to prove to itself, “We are not murdering the man, we are simply trying to prevent crime.” But this is not the fact. If you want to prevent crime, then your law should be based more on psychology, psychoanalysis, meditation. Then you will be able to see that no man has ever done anything wrong, just your whole society is wrong.

The society is wrong because it teaches people to repress, and when they repress there comes a point when what they have repressed starts overflowing and they are simply helpless. They are victims. All your criminals are victims, and all your judges and all your politicians and priests are criminals. But this has been going on for centuries so it has become accepted.

Don’t do anything, just ignore… and it is not difficult, it is a very simple phenomenon. For example, this plant is here. Can’t you ignore it? Do you have to do something about it? There is no need to do anything about it.

Just take a look at the contents of your mind from a distance, just a little distance, so that you can see, “This is anger, this is sadness, this is anguish, this is anxiety, this is worry,” and so on and so forth. Let them be there. “I am unconcerned. I am not going to do anything for or against.” And they will start disappearing.

And if you can learn a simple thing, of letting these things disappear from the conscious, you will have such a clarity of consciousness… your vision will be so penetrating, your insight so far-reaching that not only will it change your individuality, it will allow the repressed contents in the unconscious to surface. Seeing that you have learned not to repress, things are moving out. They want to go out into the world.

Nobody wants to live in your basement in the darkness. Seeing that you are allowing things to move out, they need not wait for the night when you are asleep; they will start coming up. You will see them coming up from the basement of your being and moving out from your consciousness. Slowly your unconscious will be empty.

And this is the miracle, the magic: if the unconscious is empty, the wall between the conscious and unconscious collapses. It all becomes consciousness. First you had only one-tenth of your mind conscious; now you have all ten parts together conscious. You are ten times more conscious. And the process can go deeper; it can release the collective unconscious. The key is the same. It can release the cosmic unconscious.

And if you can clean all the unconscious parts below your consciousness, you will have such a beautiful awareness that to enter into the super conscious will be as easy as a bird taking wing.

It is your open sky. It is just that you were so loaded… so much weight that you could not fly. Now there is no weight. You are so light that gravitation loses its force over your mind; you can fly to the super conscious, to the collective conscious, to the cosmic conscious.

Godliness is within your reach. You just have to release the devils you have been keeping in your consciousness, forcing them into unconsciousness. Release those devils, and godliness is within your reach. And both things can happen together: as the lower part is cleaned, the upper world becomes available to you. And remember, again I say, it is a simple process.

-Osho

From The Path of the Mystic, Chapter 35

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

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Life Is Real Only When I Am

The ancient Indian philosophies say the world is Maya. Maya is a sanskrit word used to describe the unreality of the world. What does it mean to say the world is unreal?

First it is important to see there are really two worlds. There is the world as it exists, a world without judgments, without names and even without divisions. It is One world.

Then, there is the world that we see. And to be more accurate there are billions of worlds that are seen, because each person sees their own world. We can experience this daily by watching different news reports. One television commentator sees the world differently from another. But it is not just political visions that differ. An environmentalist and an industrialist will not see the same world. A poet and a scientist will not see the same world. A Christian and a Moslem will not see the same world. Even two lovers will not see the same world. So the question is which vision is real?

All worlds are colored by prejudices, philosophies, religions, moralities, histories, desires and fears. And because these qualities are projected on to the world by the personalities – they are not real. If we can look at the world without any words, and that means without thought, then only, can we see the real world. When we look at the world as we do most of the time, through the lens of our conditionings, past experiences and hopes for the future — we are seeing maya, an unreal world projected on top of a very real existence.

At even a deeper level, when we look at the so called “real world,” scientists will tell us that it is not as it appears. We look out into the world and see separate distinct objects, but physicists will not agree. They see organizations of elements made up of protons, neutrons and electrons surrounded by vast amounts of space that stay together for some time before disbanding and joining up in other groups. So the idea of real distinct solid objects is simply a fantasy. It is an appearance for some time only to disappear later. It too is maya.

Understanding that the world is indeed maya frees us from the tyranny of our mind, of our projections. We begin to withdraw some of the support that sustains this unreal world—our belief in it. We understand that indeed the world is not black and white, in fact, it is not even in color because colors too are false distinctions with labels supplied by our conditioning. We begin to rest more in the perceiving than the perceived. And it is this ending of projecting the unreal that restores our bliss of being that has been constantly dissipated by creating and maintaining the world of maya.

From this vantage point, we look at a sunset, and even that is an inaccurate description of the situation. We see a happening (what we refer to as a sunset) without comparing to yesterday’s event, without wondering where we will see it tomorrow, without even naming it or pasting qualities onto it. We simply allow the event to unfold without either grasping or rejecting.

From this vantage point existence or life simply is What Is. It follows then that to live in the “real world” it is necessary to live in a place that is outside of, free of, the mind and all of its projections. When I Am without any past, without projecting into the future, without dividing an otherwise indivisible whole, then, and only then Life is Real.

-purushottama

This post is from a collection of essays, stories, insights and poems that have occurred to me along the Way titled Here to Now and Behind.