I Bow Down to Myself – Osho

Amazing am I, I bow down to myself.
I have nothing at all, or I have all that can be encompassed
by speech or thought.

Janak is saying in one sense nothing is his because he is not. He no longer exists, how can ‘his’ exist? So in one sense nothing is his and in another sense everything is his. As ‘he’ no longer is, only existence remains in him; godliness remains, and everything belongs to it. This paradox has happened, where it seems nothing is his and everything is his.

Amazing am I, I bow down to myself.
I have nothing at all, or I have all that can be encompassed
by speech or thought.

The day you become an observer is the day you become Buddha, Ashtavakra, Krishna…that day you become all. When you become an observer you become the center of the universe. You disappear from this side; you are fulfilled from that side. You lose this small ‘I’, this small droplet – and gain the infinite ocean.

These sutras are the sutras for worshipping your own being. These sutras are saying that you yourself are the devotee, you yourself are the divine. These sutras say you are the one worthy of adoration and you are the adorer. These sutras are saying that both are present inside you: allow them to meet! These sutras are saying something very unique: bend down to your own feet, lose yourself within yourself, drown inside yourself! Your devotee and your God are inside you. Let the union happen there, let the fusion happen.

The revolution will happen when inside you your devotee and your godliness meet and become one. Neither God nor devotee will remain. Something will remain – without form, without attributes, beyond limit, beyond death, beyond time, beyond space. Duality will disappear, nonduality will remain.

The first glimpses of these nondual moments are what we call meditation. When these nondual moments start becoming stable it is what we call ‘samadhi with seed’. And when this nondual moment becomes permanent, becomes so stable there is no way it can be dismissed – this is what we call ‘seedless samadhi, with no-mind’.

This can happen in two ways – either just by awareness, as it happened to Janak, merely through understanding…. But great intelligence is needed, sharp intelligence is needed, great intensity is needed – a very sharp-edged awareness is needed within you. It can happen immediately! If you find this happening, good. If you find that it is not happening, then don’t sit repeating these sutras. It will not happen from repeating them. These sutras are such that if it happens while listening to them, then it happens; if while listening you miss, then even if you repeat them a million times it won’t happen, because it does not happen through repetition. The sharpness of your brain does not come through repetition; through repetition its edge is lost.

One way is it if it happens when you hear these sutras. If it happens it happens, you cannot do anything. If it doesn’t happen, then slowly, slowly you will have to start with meditation, from meditation to samadhi with mind, from samadhi with mind to samadhi with no-mind – you will have to make the journey. If the leap happens, then good; if not you will have to go down the steps.


Excerpt from Enlightenment: The Only Revolution, Discourse #9

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

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

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

The Touchstone of Truth – Osho

While out walking at dusk, I felt suddenly your whole lecture of yesterday morning began echoing in every cell of my body. I was looking as a spectator at the splendor of scenes going by, when the memory of the observer arose. This play of the observer went on for some time, then my legs began wobbling and to keep from falling I sat down at the side of the road and then neither scene nor spectator remained, nor even the observer. Everything disappeared but still something was – sometimes dark, sometimes light, playing hide and seek. But since then anxiety has increased and I cannot understand all this.

This is just what I was saying. If a small glimpse of the truth comes to you, you will be upset; you won’t be able to understand. Not understanding it, a deep uneasiness will take hold of you; madness too can overtake you.

This is why I speak on these scriptures. This is why I go on explaining every day, so that the information will remain in your unconscious, and when the happening takes place you can figure it out, you can clearly define what happened. Otherwise how will you comprehend it? You won’t have the language, the words; you will have no way to understand it, no measuring stick, no scales – how will you weigh it? You will have no touchstone. How can you appraise it?

You have said: “… Your whole lecture of yesterday morning began echoing in every cell of my body. I was looking as a spectator at the splendor of scenes going by, when the memory of the observer arose. This play of the observer went on for some time, then my legs began wobbling and to keep from falling I sat down at the side of the road.”

Certainly this happens. When you first become aware of the observer, you wobble. Your whole life totters, because your whole life is set up without the observer. This new happening will shatter everything. It is like a blind man whose eyes suddenly open: do you think he will be able to walk down the road? He will stagger. Blind for forty, fifty years, he felt his way along with the help of his cane. In his blindness he gradually developed the ability to walk in the dark. He became skillful. He interpreted sounds around him. He got to know the turns in the roads. He had learned the art of seeing with his ears. For fifty years everything had been going well.

This life of the blind – which you cannot even imagine – bereft of light, color, beauty, shape; it depends only on the medium of sound…. He has only one language: sound. He has created his whole life on this basis. If on the way to the market in the morning suddenly his eyes open, think of what will happen. His whole world will come crashing down. His world of sound will go completely topsy-turvy.

This event will be so strong – the eyes opening, seeing peoples’ faces, seeing colors, the rays of the sun, sunlight and shadow, this crowd; so many people, buses, cars, bicycles – he will completely freak out! It will be such a great shock to his life: Will the small world he has made with the help of sound disappear, be wiped out, die, be trampled under? He will sit down on the spot trembling, he may stagger and fall. Perhaps he will not be able to make it home… maybe he will faint.

And this example is nothing. When the observer makes its entrance into your life, when just one ray of the observer comes, then this example is nothing – the event is so much bigger. The inner eye is opening. You have created your world without the inner eye and when the inner eye suddenly opens it makes your whole world wrong. You will remain speechless in amazement.

You have asked rightly and asked from experience. Consider the two types of questions. One is theoretical – it has no great value. But this question comes out of experience. If there were no experience this question could not have arisen. If these legs had not staggered, this question would not have arisen. This question is from direct experience.

“… The memory of the observer arose.” Ashtavakra’s words must have reverberated. An echo must have remained of what I had said in the morning. Its fragrance must have arisen in you, a few threads of what I said must have become entangled in you.

“… The memory of the observer arose. This play of the observer went on for some time….” Perhaps it was only a moment. A moment of the observer seems very long, because the observer is beyond time. Here only a second passes on your watch; there, as the observer, it seems centuries have passed. This watch is of no use there. This watch is not made for the inner eye.

“This play of the observer went on for some time, but then my legs began wobbling and I sat down at the side of the road to keep from falling.” This wobbling indicates that it happened. The questioner has not asked a question from his listening or reading – something transpired.

“And then neither scene nor spectator remained, nor even the observer.” In that wobbling everything dispersed, everything disappeared. In such moments confusion arises if there has been no gradual preparation. If we are unable to assimilate it drop by drop, if it happens all of a sudden, there can be an explosion.

“Everything disappeared but still something was.” Certainly something was. Actually everything was for the first time. Everything of yours ended, your little house of straw fell down. The sky, the moon and stars – the ultimate remained. The boundaries, the lines you had drawn all disappeared – cloudless sky remained. Your conditioning of living in a confined shell was shaken. You were frightened by this wobbling and sat down at the roadside. Certainly something was. The experience makes one speechless. One cannot grasp: what was it, who was it?

Have you noticed? – Sometimes something suddenly wakes you up when you were deep asleep. At five a.m. you were sound asleep, at the hour of deepest sleep, and something suddenly awakens you. Some noise, some firecracker goes off in the street, a car crashes into your door: some noise that immediately wakes you up. Instantly! You jump immediately from sleep to wakefulness. You come like an arrow from the depths of sleep. Usually when we come out of deep sleep we come very slowly. First deep sleep drops away, then dreams gradually start floating, then we remain in dreams for a while.

You can remember your morning dreams, but you do not recall the night dreams, because the morning dreams are very light and exactly half way between sleep and waking up. Then gradually dreams disappear. Then there is half broken sleep. Then sun and shadow play a little hide and seek with your eyes: you are one moment awake, one moment again asleep; you roll over as if awake…. In between you hear your wife making tea, a dish falls, the milkman comes, someone passes by on the street, the servant knocks, the kids are getting ready for school. Then you roll over again and start falling into the depths. In this way you very gradually come to the surface. Then you open your eyes.

But if something happens suddenly, you come like an arrow from the depths straight to awakening. Your eyes open and you wonder: Where am I? Who am I? For a moment nothing is clear. This must have happened to all of you at some time or other: you wonder, Who am I? Even your name and address will be gone. Where am I? This too will be unclear. It is as if you have suddenly come to some alien world. It lasts only a moment then you come back together, because this shock isn’t such a great shock. And then too you are used to it – it happens every day. You get up every morning: you return from the world of dreams into the world of wakefulness. This routine is old, yet sometimes when it happens suddenly you are startled and frightened.

When the real awakening happens you will be completely speechless. You won’t have any idea what is happening. Everything will become calm and silent.

But it was good. “… Neither scene nor spectator remained, not even the observer remained.

Everything disappeared but still something was.” It is to help you to comprehend this “something” that I speak on scriptures – so you become capable of interpreting it. You can give meaning to this “something,” you can identify it, you can define it. If not, it can drown you. You will be carried away in a flood, you won’t have any place to stand. Hence I go on saying so many things.

“Everything disappeared but still something was. Sometimes dark, sometimes light playing hide and seek. But since then anxiety has increased and I cannot understand all this.”

Put it away, keep what I say to you. Make a jewelled box for it. Don’t take it as wisdom but only as information. Consciously make a box for it. Then gradually you will find, as experiences begin happening, that my words arise from your unconscious, and make clear and comprehensible the experiences that happen. I will be your witness.

But if you argue with me as you listen I cannot become your witness – you listen and you are creating some kind of internal struggle against me, refuting me. If you are not listening sympathetically, lovingly, but go on debating, then I cannot be your witness because then when you put something in your box it won’t be mine, it will be yours.

Last night a psychologist from Australia took sannyas. I told him, “You are welcome here even if you don’t take sannyas. But then you will not become my guest. You are welcomed. But if you take sannyas you are welcome here and you will also become my guest.”

People ask me, “Will your love for us be less if we don’t take sannyas?” My love for you will remain total. Be welcome! But the moment you take sannyas you become my guest also. And there is a great difference. Without taking sannyas you listen from a distance. Taking sannyas you come close.

Without your taking sannyas your intellect goes on analyzing, goes on shifting whatever I say. Whatever fits with your mind you keep, whatever does not fit you throw out. And the possibility is that what doesn’t fit with you is what will be useful for you. Whatever agrees with your mind cannot transform you. If it agrees with you it means that it is in harmony with your past. What doesn’t fit with your past can spark a revolution within. What doesn’t fit with you can transform. Whatever totally fits you will strengthen you as you are, not transform you. You go on selecting – you think you are intelligent.

Intelligent people sometimes do very idiotic things. They sit here selecting. They go on choosing. They hold on to things that fit their prejudice, and make no connection with anything that is against their prejudice. But I repeat to you that what doesn’t seem to fit you will someday be useful. Now you don’t have any way to understand it, because you don’t have any experience of it. But still I say unto you, keep it with you. When the experience comes someday, then suddenly it will arise from your unconscious and clarify everything. Then you will not remain speechless, the amazement will not break you apart. And you need not be frightened and uneasy.

“High above what the wind sang and the cedars echoed, what was shining on the snow peaks, what spilled over from the evening sky, who received all this? The one who extended his hand, desiring to attract it? Oh, it has descended into my already given heart. It overflows in my accepted tears. It came unknown, unrecognized. It has manifested itself by means of all these and me. It has permeated itself. Alone where it is resplendent, eyes are helplessly lowered. Not only sounds, the echoing of the infinite silence is also lost there.”

Hear me – with deep tears! Hear me – with the heart. Hear me – with love. Not with intellect, not with logic. This is the meaning of trust and faith.

“High above what the wind sang and the cedars echoed, what was shining on the snow peaks, what spilled over from the evening sky, who received all this? The one who extended his hand, desiring to attract it?” No! Whenever the hand of desire is extended, it shrinks. The hand of desire can only contain alms, not an empire. A heart opened by love is needed to contain an empire. A begging, desiring bowl will not do.

“… Who received all this? The one who extended his hand, desiring to attract it?”

You can listen to me in such a way that you take what fits your prejudices and put it in your bag. Then you come to me extending your begging bowl. Desire is a beggar. You can take a little, but what you take are just scraps of bread fallen from the table. You could not become a guest. Sannyas will make you a guest. “Oh, it has descended into my already given heart. It overflows in my accepted tears. It came unknown, unrecognized. It has manifested itself by means of all these and me. It has permeated itself. Alone where it is resplendent, eyes are helplessly lowered.”

Where eyes bow down…. “Not only sounds, the echoing of the infinite silence is also lost there.” Get ready for this. Fill the heart with love for this. Learn to listen with sympathy. And keep in a treasure box what I am saying to you. Then you will not suffer. Then when the unacquainted, the unknown descends, you can understand it. You will be able to understand its hidden music. You will not drown or be frightened by its silence, you will be liberated; otherwise it seems like death.

If God comes without your understanding, if you have no means to understand him, it will feel like death, that you are finished. If you have a little understanding, some preparation, you have learnt something from a master, have sat in his presence, then God is liberation; otherwise he seems to be death. And once you have freaked out, you will stop going in that direction. Once you have been so frightened, every cell of your body will tremble. You will go everywhere except where there is such fear. Where your arms and legs tremble, where you have to sit at the side of the road, where everything goes dark and all seems to be lost; something unknown, unacquainted remains and you are just freaked out – you won’t go back there.

In one of Rabindranath Tagore’s poems he says, “I searched for God for many lives… searched but never found. Sometimes I got a glimpse of him among the most distant stars. I kept hoping, kept looking. Then one day by a lucky accident I reached his door. There was a sign: ’This is God’s house.’ I climbed the steps – in one leap the journey of many lives was complete. Benediction!

“My hand was on the doorbell chain when a fear overcame me: ’What if I meet him? Then? What will I do? My whole work has been to seek God. I live in this hope – it is my life’s journey. So if I meet God it will be death. What will happen to my life, my journey? Then where will I go, what will I attain, what will I seek? Then nothing will remain.’ So in fright I let go of the chain, slowly let go of it so there would be no noise, so that he would not open the door. I took my shoes in my hand and fled, and since then I have been fleeing.”

“Still I go on seeking” – the poem continues – ”even now I am seeking God, though I know where his house is. I seek him everywhere except there, because seeking is my life. I keep myself from going near it. I go anywhere except towards that house. I turn away from it. I ask everywhere else, ‘Where is God?’ – and all along I know where God is.”

As I see it, many people have come close to that house many times in their endless seeking, but freaked out. Freaked out and forgot everything; only that fright they cannot forget. This is why people are not readily attracted to meditation. People are scared, and avoid even talking about things like meditation. They make formal use of the word God, but they never let themselves go in a deep search for him. They go to the temple, the mosque – it is a social formality, a convention, a custom. They go because they are supposed to, but they never let the temple, the mosque, be established in their heart. They won’t take on such danger. They keep God far away. And there is a reason for it – somewhere hidden deep in their memory is an experience of fear. Sometime they must have faltered in front of that door.

If the friend who has had this experience does not understand it correctly he will start being frightened. Sitting down freaked out in the street, all limbs trembling, heart pounding wildly, breath coming in gulps, everything every which-way – it is better to stay away from such meditation! It is trouble. It is okay if you come back, but if you don’t come back? If you go on sitting at the roadside people will think you are crazy. It is okay for an hour or two; more, and the police will come. More, and the neighbors will take you away, or send you to the hospital to find out what happened. The medics will start giving injections, concerned that you have lost consciousness, that there may be a brain injury.

A friend has written – a sannyasin – that he left here dancing, ecstatic. His family had never seen him dancing and ecstatic. When he danced and was blissed out at home they thought he was insane. They came running, caught him, sat him down, and asked what happened.

He said, “Nothing happened to me. I am very happy, in bliss.” The more he spoke of spiritual truths the more his family was sure something was wrong. They took him from the house and forced him to enter a hospital.

A letter has come from him. He says, “I am lying here in the hospital laughing. This is great fun. When I was sad no one took me for medical help. Now I am happy people have brought me to the hospital. I am watching this drama. But they think I am insane. And the more they think I am mad the more I laugh! The more I laugh the more they think I am mad!”

It is good that you have asked. Don’t be frightened. This experience will gradually quieten down.

Witness it. This happening is natural.


From Enlightenment: The Only Revolution, Discourse #6

Enlightenment- The Only Revolution

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

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

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


Meditation: The Only Medicine – Osho

What is the relationship between meditation and witnessing?

In what way are mind and ego dissolved by them?

Human life can be divided into four circles.

The first circle is of action, the world of doing. It is the outermost. Moving within a little we come to the world of thought. Move a little further in we come to the world of feeling, devotion, love. Moving still further within we reach the center – the world of the witness.

The witness is our nature, because there is no way to go beyond it. No one ever has, and no one ever can. To become the witness of the witness is impossible. The witness is simply the witness.

You cannot go deeper than it. It is our foundation. Our house is built on the foundation of witnessing – built of feeling, of thought, of action.

This is why there are three Yogas: Karma Yoga, Gyan Yoga, Bhakti Yoga – the Yogas of action, knowledge and devotion. These are the three methods of meditation. Through these three one can make efforts to reach the witness.

The Yoga of action means action plus meditation. Karma Yoga is the effort to go directly from doing to witnessing.

Meditation is the process and witnessing is the goal.

You have asked, “What is the relationship between meditation and witnessing?” Meditation is the path, witnessing is the destination.

Witnessing is the culmination of meditation.

And meditation is the beginning of witnessing.

A Karma Yogi is one who adds meditation to doing, who links meditation to the world of action – action plus meditation.

Then Gyan Yogi is one who adds meditation to thought. He links meditation to the world of thought. He begins to think meditatively. A new practice is added: whatever one does is done with awareness. When the state of thought plus meditation is established the journey towards witnessing begins.

Meditation is a change of direction.

Whatever meditation is joined to becomes a vehicle for moving towards witnessing.

And the third path is Bhakti Yoga – adding meditation to emotion, a deep joining of meditation and emotion, the whirlpool of meditation and feeling! While feeling become meditative.

Through these three paths one can approach the witness. But the method that brings you is meditation, the fundamental thing is meditation. It is just like a doctor giving you medicine, saying to take it with honey, and you say you don’t eat honey, you are a Jaina. Then he says to take it with milk, and you say you cannot drink milk because milk is a form of blood, you are a strict Quaker – you don’t drink milk, it is like eating meat. So the doctor says take it with water. But the medicine is the same – honey, milk or water, it doesn’t make any difference. They are only to help swallow the medicine, to get it down the throat. Medicine won’t go down by itself.

Meditation is medicine.

There are three types of people in the world. Some people cannot live without doing. Their whole life flow is in working. If they try to sit quietly, they cannot; they have to do something or other. There is energy, flowing energy. There is no harm in this. But the master says try swallowing the medicine of meditation with activity. You can’t stop doing but you can add meditation to doing. You say, “I can’t sit a single moment without doing something. I just can’t. Sitting is not within my power, it’s not my nature.”

Psychologists call them extroverts: they are always occupied; they need to do something or other. Until they fall down exhausted and sleep it is not natural for them to stop working. Activity is their nature.

The master says, “Good. Do it riding on action. Make this your horse. Mix your medicine with this and swallow it. The real question is the medicine. Start working meditatively. Whatever you do, don’t do it unconsciously, do it with awareness. Stay awake while doing.”

Then there are some who say doing has no attraction for them, but thoughts come rushing in waves. They are thinkers-they have no juice for doing. They have no interest in the outer, but great waves arise within, a great tempest. And they cannot be inside for a single moment without thoughts. They say, “If we sit silently more thoughts come. When we sit silently more thoughts than usual come. Just mention worship, prayer, meditation, and a great deluge of thoughts – armies – come in wave after wave and drown us. What should we do?”

The master says, “Drink meditation mixed in with your thoughts. Don’t stop your thoughts, but when thoughts come observe them. Don’t get lost in them; stand a little apart, at a distance. Calmly watching your thoughts, you will gradually attain witnessing. Add meditation to your thoughts.”

Then there are some who say, “We have no trouble with thoughts, no trouble with doing. We have an excess of feeling. Tears flow, the heart is overwhelmed, drowning – in love, in affection, in trust, in devotion.”

The master says, “Make this your medicine, add meditation to this. Let tears flow – flow filled with meditation. Let the thrill be there, but filled with meditation. The essence is meditation.”

These differences between bhakti, karma and gyan are not differences in medicine. The medicine is one. You can see this in Ashtavakra. Ashtavakra says take a direct leap. Swallow the medicine straight. He says what use are these practices?

That is why Ashtavakra is not a Gyan Yogi or a Bhakti Yogi or Karma Yogi. He says to drop straight into witnessing. These crutches are no use – this medicine can be swallowed directly. Drop these crutches, drop these vehicles – you can run directly. You can be the witness directly.

As far as Ashtavakra is concerned the witness and meditation are not different. But as far as other methods are concerned, the witness and meditation are different. Meditation is the process and witnessing is the destination.

For Ashtavakra the path and destination are one. So he can say to be blissful right now. One whose path and goal are different cannot say “right now.” He will say, “Move! The journey is long; climb, then you will reach the mountain.” Ashtavakra says, “Open your eyes: you are sitting on the mountain! Where are you going? How to go anywhere?”

Ashtavakra’s sutra is extremely revolutionary.

Neither gyan, nor bhakti, nor karma – none of these have reached to his height. It is pure witnessing. Look at it like this: the medicine doesn’t even need to be swallowed, understanding is enough, awareness is enough. There is no need for help – you are already there. But it happens that people are incapable of understanding it.

A Sufi story…. A man went in search of truth. The first religious man he met was sitting under a tree, just outside his own village. He asked, “I am searching for a true master. Please tell me the characteristics of a true master.” The fakir told him the characteristics. His description was very simple. He said, “You’ll find him sitting under such and such a tree, sitting in such and such posture, his hands making such and such gestures – that is enough to know he is the true master.”

The seeker started searching. It is said that thirty years passed while he wandered the whole earth. He visited many places, but never met the master. He met many masters, but none were true masters. He returned to his own village completely exhausted. As he was returning he was surprised, he couldn’t believe it: that old man was seated under the same tree, and now he could see that this was the very tree that the old man had spoken of “… he will be sitting under such and such a tree…..” And his posture was exactly as he had described. ”It was the same posture he was sitting in thirty years ago – was I blind? The exact expression on his face, the exact gestures….!”

He fell at his feet saying, “Why didn’t you tell me in the first place? Why did you misdirect me for these thirty years? Why didn’t you tell me that you are the true master?”

The old man said, “I told you, but you were not ready to listen. You were not able to come home without wandering away. You had to knock on the doors of a thousand houses to come to your own home, only then could you return. I said it, I said everything – beneath such and such a tree. I was describing this very tree, the posture I was sitting in, but you were too fast, you couldn’t hear correctly, you were in a hurry. You were going somewhere to search. Searching was very important for you, the truth was not so important.

“But you have come! I was feeling tired, sitting continuously in this posture for you. You were wandering for thirty years, but think of me sitting under this tree! I knew some day you would come, but what if I had already passed away? I waited for you – you have come! You had to wander for thirty years, but that’s your own fault. The master was always here.”

It happens many times in our life that we cannot see what is near, and what is far attracts us. The distant drum sounds sweeter, we are pulled by distant dreams.

Ashtavakra says that you are what you are seeking.

And you are it right here, right now.

What Krishnamurti has been telling people is exactly Ashtavakra’s message. No one understood, nor has anyone understood Krishnamurti. And your so-called saints and sannyasins are very angry because Krishnamurti says there is no need for meditation. He is absolutely right– No need for devotion, no need for action, no need for knowledge. Ordinary sadhus and saints become very nervous: “No need whatsoever? He is misleading people!” It is these sadhus who mislead.

Krishnamurti is straightforwardly giving Ashtavakra’s message. He is saying there is no need because there is only a need if you have lost something. Just get up and shake off the dust! Splash a little cold water on your eyes; what more is needed?

In Ashtavakra’s vision witnessing and meditation are one, because the goal and the path are one. But for all other paths and religious schools meditation is a method; witnessing, its final fruit.

“In what way are mental blocks and ego dissolved by them?”

Mind and ego are not dissolved by witnessing: in witnessing you find out that they never existed. They can be dissolved only if they exist.

It is like this: you are sitting in a dark room and think there is a ghost. It is only your shirt hanging there but you are scared, and in fright your imagination adds hands and feet to it. He is standing there frightening you! Someone says light a lamp, and you ask how will lighting a lamp make ghosts go away. But lighting a lamp does drive away the ghost because there isn’t one there! If there were, lighting a lamp wouldn’t drive it away. What has a lamp got to do with scaring away ghosts? If there were a ghost a lamp would not drive him away. But he doesn’t exist, he is illusory – that’s why he goes away.

You suffer from thousands of diseases which are not there. This is why the ash from some sadhu will cure you, not because ash has driven out your illness. Are you mad? Has ash ever cured a disease? If so, the whole science of medicine would be useless. Ash cannot cure illness, it only gets rid of the idea that you were ill.

I have heard a story about a doctor – he himself told it to me. He was living near the Bastar tribal area and a tribal man came to him from deep within Bastar. The doctor was visiting a village, a tribal village. This man was sick, but the doctor had nothing to write with; there was no pen or paper in the village. He found a cloth and wrote the name of the medicine on it with a piece of rock, and told him, “Take it with milk for a whole month, and you will be fine.” The man came back after a month. He was completely okay – healthy, robust. The doctor asked, “Did the medicine work?

He said, “It worked great. Now write on one more cloth for me.”

The doctor asked, “What do you mean?”

He said, “The cloth is finished. I drank it all up! Such great medicine.”

He had come to him completely cured! Now it wouldn’t be right for the doctor to explain anything; that would be inappropriate. He told me, “Since he was cured I didn’t say anything: medicine is what makes you well. Why should I confuse him by telling him, ‘You idiot, I just wrote out the name of the medicine, but you never bought it!’ He drank the prescription, but it worked.” The disease must have been false, imaginary.

Psychologists say ninety out of a hundred illnesses are imaginary. And as understanding increases it is possible that ninety-nine percent are imaginary. One day perhaps one hundred percent diseases will be found to be imaginary.

This is why the world has so many medical systems that work. Use western medicine and the patient gets well. Use Ayurveda or Homeopathy or the Greek-Islamic system, or Naturopathy – the patient is cured. Even a charm or talisman will cure him.

It is surprising. If he were really sick then only one particular method would work to cure the disease, every method could not work. There is no disease. It is only what you believe in: someone believes in western medicine so it works…. And the doctor’s name is more important than the medicine.

Have you ever noticed that when you return from seeing a great doctor, your pockets empty from paying such huge fees, you are already half cured? If this same doctor wrote you free prescriptions it wouldn’t have any effect on you. The fees you have paid out do more than his medicine. Once you have the idea that he is a great doctor – the greatest – it is enough.

You ask, “In what way are mind and ego dissolved by them?” They are not dissolved. If they existed, they would be dissolved. In witnessing you find out, “Idiot, you are needlessly lost! Your own imagination has projected mirages – it was all imagination.” They don’t dissolve. In witnessing you become alert and find out that they never existed.


Excerpt from Enlightenment: The Only Revolution, Discourse #4

Enlightenment- The Only Revolution

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

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

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

The One Observer of All – Osho

Today’s first sutra says: “You are the one observer of all, and in reality always free.”

The individual is the observer, not the observed.

There are three types of people. Those who have become objects to be seen, performers – they are in the deepest darkness…. Second are those who have become spectators. They are a little better than the first, but there is not much difference. Third are those who have become the observer. It is good to understand these three distinctly.

When you become the observed, you become a thing; you have lost your soul. It is difficult to find a soul in a political leader. It is difficult to find a soul in an actor. He has become an object to be seen, he lives to be an object to be seen. His whole effort is to impress people: how to look good, how to look beautiful, how to look the best. It is not an effort to be the best, but an effort to appear the best. One who becomes the observed becomes a hypocrite. He covers his face with a mask. He presents a good outward show but is rotting inside.

Second are those who have become spectators. They are the vast crowd. Naturally the first type of people needs the second type; otherwise, how can people become performers? Someone becomes a politician; he gets a crowd to clap for him. There is great harmony between them. A leader needs followers. If someone is dancing, spectators are needed. If someone sings, listeners are needed; hence some busy themselves as performers and some remain spectators. Spectators are the vast crowd.

Western psychologists are very worried because people are becoming mere spectators. They go to the movies, switch on the radio, or sit in front of the television for hours. In America the average person spends about six hours a day watching television. If there is a football game, they watch it; a wrestling match, they watch it; a baseball game or the Olympics, they watch that. Now they have become mere spectators, spectators standing at the side of the road: the procession of life passes and you go on watching.

There are some who have joined the procession. That is harder. There is much competition. To join the procession is not so easy. A lot of fighting and aggression are required. But spectators are also needed to watch the procession. They stand on the sides and watch. If they are not there, the procession too will disappear.

Imagine, if followers did not come, what would happen to the leaders? Alone shouting, “Let our flag fly high!” they would look like great idiots, they would look insane. But spectators are needed, a crowd is needed; then even madness looks right. Imagine a cricket match is going on and no one comes to watch it. The match will be dead. The juice in the match is not in the match itself, it is in the thousands of people who gather to watch it.

Man is wonderful! He even goes to see horse races. The whole of Koregaon Park is full of horserace enthusiasts. It is very strange – no horse would go to watch men run. Horses run and men come to see it. Man has fallen even below horses.

Life is spent watching, just watching. Spectators…. You do not love, you watch love-making in films. You do not dance, you watch someone else dance. You do not sing, you listen to someone else sing. Is it surprising if your life becomes impotent, if all life-energy is lost? There is no movement, no flow of energy in your life. You sit like a corpse. Your sole function is to go on watching. Someone goes on showing, you go on watching. These two types are abundant in the world, one bound to the other.

Psychologists say there are two poles to each illness. There are people psychologists call masochists; they torture themselves. And there is another type which psychologists call sadists; they take delight in torturing others. Both are needed. So, when these two get together, it becomes a scene of great merriment.

Psychologists say you can’t find a better couple than where the husband is a sadist and the wife a masochist. The woman enjoys torturing herself, the husband enjoys torturing others – a wedding made in heaven! One is blind, the other a leper – well suited, a perfect fit. Every illness has two polarities. The performer and the spectator are two poles of the same disease. Usually women like to be watched and men like to be spectators. In the language of psychology women are exhibitionists. Their whole interest is in ostentatious display.

Once Mulla Nasruddin was swatting flies. There were too many around and his wife had asked him to get rid of them. He was standing near the mirror swatting them. He said, “Look at these two she-flies sitting here.”

The wife remarked, “This is too much! – how do you know whether they are male or female?”

He replied, “They have been on the mirror for the last hour – they must be female. What would  a male do on the mirror?”

Women cannot live without a mirror. When they see a mirror it pulls them like a magnet. Their whole life is spent in front of it: trying on clothes and dresses, trying on jewelry and adorning themselves. And the surprising thing is that when the woman goes out, totally dressed up, if someone pinches her she becomes angry! If no one harasses her then too she is unhappy – because so much preparation was made to be provocative, to provoke harassment. Otherwise, what was the need? Women do not bother to dress up in front their husbands. They remain perfect hags in front of their husbands because with him, chasing and seduction have long stopped. But if she has to go out, she will take a lot of time to prepare. She will have spectators, she will be on stage.

Psychologists say man is a voyeur. His whole focus is in viewing; his whole interest is to see.

Woman is not interested in seeing, she is interested in exhibiting herself. That is why a man-woman pair fit each other. Both sides of the illness are there simultaneously. And both states are unhealthy.

Ashtavakra says man’s nature is to be a seer, an observer; it is neither to be a performer nor a spectator.

Never confuse these two again. Many times I have seen people make this mistake: they think they have become the observer when they have become a spectator. There is a very fundamental distinction between these two words. The dictionary may not show the difference. There spectator and observer may have the same meaning. But in the dictionary of life there is a great difference.

A spectator is one whose eyes are on others.

And the observer is one whose eyes are on himself.

When the eyes are on the object you are a spectator, when the eyes are on the seer you are an observer. It is a revolutionary distinction, very fundamental. When your eyes stop on the object and you forget yourself, then you are a spectator. When all objects of vision have departed, when you, and only you, are there – only awakening remains, only alertness remains – then you are an observer.

When you are a spectator, you become completely oblivious. You forget yourself completely; your attention gets stuck there. You go to the movies and for three hours you forget yourself, you don’t even remember who you are. You forget all worries and anxieties. This is why crowds rush there. There is so much worry, anxiety, trouble in living – a method of forgetting is needed. People become completely one pointed. Only at the movies is their total attention is focused. They see… actually there is nothing on the screen, just shadows go on flickering, but people are all attention. They forget their illness, their anxieties, their old age, and even if death comes they will forget that.

But remember, you have not become an observer in the theater; you have become a spectator.

You have forgotten yourself; you have no memory of who you are. You have lost all memory of the energy of seeing which is within you. You have stopped at the object in front of you, you are totally drowned in it.

To be a spectator is a kind of self-forgetting. And to be an observer means now all objects of observation have disappeared. The screen is empty, now no film moves on it. No thoughts remain, no words remain; the screen becomes absolutely empty, blank and shining, white. Nothing left to see, only the seer remains. And now you take a plunge into the seer. You become the observer.

Performers and spectators: humanity is divided between these two. Very rarely an observer is born – an Ashtavakra, a Krishna, a Mahavir, a Buddha…. Very rarely someone is awakened and becomes the observer.

“You are the one observer of all….”

And the beauty of this sutra is that no sooner do you become an observer than you know that the observer is only one, not many. Objects are many, spectators are many. It is the nature of objects and spectators to be many: it is a web of lies. The observer is only one. For instance the moon is out, a full moon. In rivers and puddles, in pools and ponds, in the ocean, in streams – everywhere it is reflected. If you wander the earth counting all the reflections there will be trillions. The moon is one, reflections innumerable. The observer is one, performers are many, spectators are many. They are only reflections, they are shadows.

When a person becomes free from being a performer or a spectator, has no desire to exhibit and be seen, and has no desire to see, when he knows that the trap of seeing and showing is false – no longer interested he attains nonattachment, freedom from desire. Now there is no desire for anyone to say you are beautiful, you are good, you are virtuous. Even if you inwardly wish people to think you virtuous, then know that you are still caught in the same old web. If you wish in your heart that people know you are religious, then you are still caught in the same web. The world is still with you. It has assumed another shape, taken a new mode, but the same old trap continues. The same old pattern continues.

What will you get by seeing? You have seen so much. What did you get? What will you get by exhibiting? Who can give you something real for your display?

Putting aside these two, putting aside this duality and plunging into the observer, one finds that there is only one. This full moon is only one. In these pools, puddles, ponds, lakes it looked numerous. They were separate mirrors, so there seemed to be many moons.

I have heard that a king built a whole palace with mirrors. He put mirror after mirror inside and it became a looking-glass palace. Once, a dog – the king’s own dog – was shut in at night. He was left inside by mistake. You can understand that dog’s condition – it is the same as man’s condition. He looked all around and saw nothing but dogs. A dog in every mirror. He barked – he freaked out!

When a man is afraid he wants to make others afraid. He thinks perhaps his fear will be less if others are also frightened.

The dog barked, but naturally as there were only mirrors there, in mirror after mirror dogs barked back. The sound returned to him – it was his own echo. He barked all night, ran, charged the mirrors, and became covered in his own blood. No one else was there, he was alone. He was found dead in the morning. There were blood stains all over the place. His story is the story of man.

There is no other here. The other does not exist.

Whoever is is unique.

Here one is. But this will not be understood until you have caught hold of that one within you.

“You are the one observer of all, and in reality you are always free.” Ashtavakra says: “… in reality free.” Do not think this just a fantasy. Man is very strange: he thinks the world is real and these statements of truth, just fantasies. He considers unhappiness to be real, and if a ray of happiness descends he considers it a dream, a deception.

People come to me and they say, “We feel great joy, but the doubt arises that perhaps it is an illusion.” They have lived in misery for so many lives that they have lost the confidence that there can also be joy. Joy begins to seem impossible. They are so used to weeping, so used to unhappiness, so familiar with the thorns of life that they do not trust their eyes when they see flowers. They think, “This must be a dream – an unreal sky flower; it cannot be, it should not exist.”

That is why Ashtavakra says: “… in reality free.” One is not bound. Bondage is impossible, because only God is, only one is. There is nothing that binds, nor anything to be bound. “… In reality always free.” This is why a man like Ashtavakra says, if you wish you can be free this very moment – because you are already free. There is nothing preventing freedom, there was never any bondage – you only believed you were bound.


Excerpt from Enlightenment: The Only Revolution, Discourse #3

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

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

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

Touchstone of Truth – Osho

Through studying texts like Vedanta and the Ashtavakra Geeta, I have learnt that whatever is worth attaining has already been attained. Making efforts for it is going astray. I have deepened this conviction, so why has self-realization not happened? Please show me the path.

Never think that what you understand from scriptures is your own understanding. Never think what you understand from words has become your own experience.

Hearing Ashtavakra, many people will feel, “Far out, everything is already attained.” But it is not attained this way. What connection is there between your listening to Ashtavakra and attaining? It has already happened: this must be your own experience. The recognition, the blessing, must be yours; it is not an intellectual conclusion. Intellect will quickly accept it. What could be easier than, “It has already happened. Good, our troubles are over. Now there is no need to search, no need to meditate, no need to worship or pray – it has already happened.”

Intellect is ready to accept – not because it has grasped the truth. It accepts because the difficulties of the path can be dropped, efforts of sadhana dropped, and the need to continue meditating is dropped. Soon you look around and find that you have not attained. If it could happen merely by the intellect grasping it, there could be spiritual universities. There is no university of spiritual study. It is not attained from scriptures; it is attained by your own spontaneous inspired wisdom.

Listen to Ashtavakra, but don’t be in a hurry to believe. Your greed makes you hurry. Your greed will tell you, “This is very handy. We already have the treasure, so the whole botheration of attaining is over. Now there is nowhere to go, now there is nothing to do.”

You always wanted to attain without effort. But remember the desire to attain is still there behind all this: attain without doing! Previously you thought of striving to attain; now you think of attaining without exertion – but the desire to attain is still there. This is why the question arises of why self-realization has not yet happened.

For one who has understood: “Forget about self-realization, what’s the use?” If you had understood Ashtavakra, no other question could arise. The question “Self-realization has not happened” indicates that while accepting what Ashtavakra says, you are watching from the corner of your eye: is it attained yet or not? Your eye is still focused on attaining.

People come to me and I tell them, “Meditation cannot go deep as long as you continue desiring. As long as you expect to attain something – bliss, God, atma – meditation will not go deep, because thinking of attaining is greed. It is ambition, it is politics. It is not yet religion.” They say, “Okay, we’ll meditate without thinking about it, but we will attain, won’t we?”

There is no difference. They are ready to stop desiring because, “You say this is the way to attain, so we won’t think of it – but still, we will attain it, won’t we?”

You are not able to rid yourself of greed. Hearing Ashtavakra many people will very quickly accept that it has happened. If it could happen so quickly… and it is not that there is any barrier to it happening. The barrier is the foolishness of your desiring. The happening is so near!

Ashtavakra is right – it has already happened. But only when all desire for attaining disappears then this, “It has happened already,” will be understood. Then you will know from your totality that it is attained. But at the moment it is just an intellectual diversion: “If a great master like Ashtavakra said it, it must be right.” You are hurrying to believe. Your belief is impotent. Without doubting you have quickly accepted it.

In this country the habit has disappeared of doubting anything stated in scriptures. If it is in the scriptures it must be right.

One day Mulla Nasruddin came carrying a very handsome umbrella. I asked him, “Where did you get it? Such fine umbrellas are not made here.”

He said, “My sister sent a gift.”

I said, “Nasruddin! You have always said that you don’t have any sisters.”

He replied, “It is true.”

Then I said, “Yet this gift is sent by your sister…?”

He said, “If you don’t believe me: here, it is written on the handle, ‘A gift for my beloved brother, from your sister.’ I was coming out of a restaurant and these letters on the umbrella – I thought it seems I do have a sister. When it is written it has to be believed. And perhaps there is some sister or cousin…. And religious people have always said you should take every woman except your wife as your mother or sister.”

When something is published – and in the scriptures… belief in the written word is very strong.
When you tell someone something, he asks where it was this published. If you say where he will believe what you said. It is as if there is some power in writing. Say how ancient it is – people will accept it. It is as if truth is somehow related to age. Who said it? Ashtavakra? Buddha? Mahavir? – then it must be right.

From your side you haven’t made any effort to wake up – not a tiny bit. Someone said it, you believed it – and such convenience: you have attained without doing anything!

Krishnamurti’s followers have been listening for forty years – exactly the same people more or less. They have attained nothing. Sometimes one of them comes to me saying, “I know that everything is already attained, but why hasn’t it happened? I listen to Krishnamurti, I understand that everything is already attained.”

These people are greedy. They hoped that instead of having to make any effort they should get it free. They have not heard Krishnamurti nor understood Ashtavakra. They have heard their greed. They have heard through their greed. Then they interpret in their own way.

A friend has asked, “Doing meditations seems irrelevant now. Five meditations a day – and this lecture series on Ashtavakra going on…. It seems stupid.”

It is so easy to drop meditation – so hard to do it. What Ashtavakra attained was not attained through doing, and yet it was not attained without doing anything.

Try to understand. This is a subtle point.

I have told you Buddha attained when he dropped all doing. But first he did everything. Six years of untiring effort, he gave everything to it. By giving everything, he experienced that nothing can be attained by doing. It wasn’t by reading Ashtavakra… even though the Ashtavakra Gita was available in Buddha’s time. He could have studied it – there was no need for six years of effort. He made an untiring effort for six years, and in the midst of this effort he found out it is not attained by effort. He didn’t leave a single stone unturned, proving to himself that it couldn’t be attained by inner effort. There was no desire left inside. He did everything, and he saw that he didn’t attain. His effort became so crystallized that in this crystallization, doing dropped. Then it happened.

I say unto you, the state of non-doing will come when you have done everything. Don’t hurry, otherwise what little meditation you are already doing will be lost, what little prayer you are doing will be lost. Ashtavakra remains far away and the little progress you were making on the journey will stop too.

Before stopping one needs to run totally. Though one does not attain by running, this knowing will be crystallized by it. One day effort will drop, but not from mere intellectual understanding. When every cell, every atom understands it is useless – this is the moment it happens.

Ashtavakra is right in saying that practice is bondage.

But only one who practices will find out.

I am telling you this because I have practiced and found it is a dead end. I am telling you this because I have practiced sadhana and found that no sadhana leads one to the sadhya, to the goal. I meditated and found that no meditation brings one to samadhi.

When this becomes your deep experience, and one day that moment comes when it boils at one hundred degrees, when you have given everything…. Holding back nothing – you have thrown yourself totally into the fire, the effort has become total, the inner fire is total, the sadhana is total; now existence cannot tell you that you have held anything back, all is given – that day, in that crystallization, in that state of ignited consciousness suddenly everything is burnt to ash. All sadhana, all practices, all meditation, all renunciation – suddenly you wake up and find, “Oh! What I was seeking was already attained!”

But if it could happen just by reading Ashtavakra then it would be very convenient. What is hard about reading Ashtavakra? The sutra is so clear and simple. Remember, to understand simple things is the most difficult thing in the world. And the difficulty comes from within you. You hope you won’t have to do anything. It is very hard for people to accept the need to meditate.

This is the acid test – the Ashtavakra Gita. Those who hear Ashtavakra and continue meditating have understood. Those who hear Ashtavakra and stop meditating have not understood Ashtavakra and they lose their meditation too.

Practice and you will find out that practice is a dead end. This is the final phase of practicing. Don’t be in too much of a hurry.

“Through the study of texts like Vedanta and the Ashtavakra Geeta, I have learnt….” Has anyone ever known through study? Has anyone known through memorizing texts? Has anyone ever known through learning scriptures, learning words? This is not knowing; it is information, knowing about. You can say this information is known: “What is worth attaining is already attained.” But when you realize it, everything is finished.

You were informed, you got excited, and it sprouted in greed! Your greed said, “Look, I have been meaninglessly making efforts. Ashtavakra says ‘without doing anything,’ so I will sit without doing anything.” So you sit doing nothing. After a while you observe, “The happening has not happened yet. Why this delay? And Ashtavakra said right now!” You sit looking at the clock, “Five seconds have past, five minutes have past, an hour is almost over – and Ashtavakra said immediately! Right now! There is no need for even a second to pass!” You start thinking he was lying, your trust is broken.

This is not knowing, it is information. Always remember the difference between information and knowing. Information means borrowed. Someone else has known, and listening to him you have become informed. This is information. Knowing is an experience. No one else can know for you; it cannot be borrowed.

I have known – your knowing will not happen from this. My knowing will be mine; your knowing will be yours. Yes, if you collect my words it will be information. Through information one can become a scholar but not a wise man. Knowledge about wisdom can be collected, but not the liberation of wisdom. A whole system of words can be created, but not the beauty of truth. The words will hem you in more, will enslave you more. So you will find scholars very restricted. Where is the open sky? Knowing that what is worth attaining is already attained – if you know it then what is left to ask?

“… Making efforts is going astray.” If you know this then what else is there to ask? ”I have deepened this conviction.” Either there is conviction or there is not; there is no way to deepen it. How can you deepen it? If there is faith there is faith; if there isn’t there isn’t – how will you deepen it? What method is there for making faith deepen? Will you suppress your doubts? Will you sit on top of your doubts? What will you do? Will you falsify your doubts? When the mind raises questions will you ignore them?

Inside, the worm of doubt will be gnawing. It will say, “Now listen, is anything attained without doing anything? Has anything ever happened just by sitting? Things happen by doing; does anything happen by sitting idle? Can you get anything for free? What nonsense are you getting into? What illusion are you suffering from? Get up, move, run; otherwise life will run out – life is already running out! Don’t waste time sitting here like an idiot.”

These doubts will arise: what will you do with them? Will you suppress them? Will you falsify them? Will you say you don’t want to hear about it? Will you throw them into the unconscious? Will you hide them inside, in your basement? Will you avoid looking them in the face?

What will you do to deepen your faith? You will do something like this – you will repress in some way. This faith will be false; disbelief will be smoldering beneath it. This faith is superficial. Above is a threadbare covering; underneath, the coals of disbelief, of doubt. Soon they will burn up your faith. This faith is of no use, you cannot deepen it. Faith is, or faith is not.

It is like someone drawing a circle. If he draws half a circle will you call it a circle? Can half a circle be called a circle? It is an arc, not a circle. It can be called a circle only if it is complete. An incomplete circle is not a circle. Incomplete trust is not trust, because incomplete trust means that distrust is also present. In the empty arc, what will happen? There will be doubt. Doubt and trust cannot move together. It would be like one foot going east, the other foot going west – you won’t get anywhere. It would be like riding in two boats, one going to this shore and one going to that shore – where will you go?

The journeys of doubt and trust are quite separate. You are riding in two boats. What is the meaning of incomplete trust? Does half faith mean half disbelief is also present? If trust exists it is complete, otherwise it exists not.

And remember one important fact: whenever the higher is mixed with the lower, the lower does not lose anything, but the higher does. When you mix the higher with the lower there is no harm to the lower, but the higher is harmed.

A feast is prepared, fine foods are set out. Throw just a small handful of dirt on it. You could say it is a vast feast, what can a small handful of dirt do? But a small handful of dirt destroys the whole feast. The whole feast cannot destroy even this small handful of dirt.

Throw a rock at a flower and nothing happens to the rock, but the flower will be destroyed. The rock is lower, lifeless. The flower is glorious, full of life. The flower is of the sky, the rock is of the earth. The flower is the poetry of life. When the flower and rock collide the flower is completely crushed, the rocked completely unscratched.

One drop of poison is enough. Remember, doubt is lower. If the rock of doubt falls on the flower of trust, the flower will be flattened and die, the flower will be murdered. Do not think that trust will transform the rock. The rock will destroy the flower.

Either faith is or it is not – there are not two possibilities. When faith exists, it encompasses your whole life, it spreads into every cell. Faith is expansive. But such a faith does not come from the scriptures, it cannot come. Such a faith comes from live experience. It comes when you read the scripture of life, not from reading Ashtavakra.

Understand Ashtavakra, but don’t think this understanding is wisdom. Understand Ashtavakra and preserve this inside yourself, put it away. You have received a touchstone. You didn’t receive wisdom, but an analyst’s experience. And when you do attain wisdom, you can easily test it with the touchstone of Ashtavakra.

The touchstone is not gold. When you go to a goldsmith you see he has a black testing stone. This black stone is not gold. When he receives gold, the goldsmith rubs it on this black stone to find out if it is gold or not.

When you have understood Ashtavakra’s words carefully keep them, pack them away and when your experience of life comes you can test it. Ashtavakra’s touchstone will be helpful then. You will be able to know what has happened. You will have the language to understand it. You will have a method to understand it. Ashtavakra will be your witness.

This is the way I take the scriptures. The scriptures are witnesses. The path of truth is unknown.
You need witnesses on that unknown path. When you first come face to face with truth, truth will be so vast that you will tremble; you will be unable to grasp it. You will shake to your very roots. There will be fear that you could go mad.

Imagine what will happen to a man who has been searching for a treasure for lifetimes and suddenly he finds that the treasure is buried where he is standing – won’t he go mad? ”This seeking for many lives was a waste! The treasure is buried right under my feet!”

Just imagine. It will be a tremendous shock for this man: “So many years I have wasted! This whole time has been a meaningless effort, a nightmare. What I have been seeking was waiting inside.” Won’t a man go mad from such a shock? At that time Ashtavakra’s sweet words will soothe you. At that time the Vedanta, Buddha, the Upanishads, the Bible, the Koran, Buddha, will stand as your witnesses. In that situation you will be unable to comprehend the new experiences that are happening to you. In aloneness it is very difficult.

I am speaking on the scriptures – not because by hearing the scriptures you will become wise. I am speaking on them so that as you move on the path of meditation – if not today, then tomorrow it will happen, it has to happen – when the happening takes place it need not be that gold is in front of you and you cannot comprehend.

I am giving you a touchstone.

Test your experiences on these touchstones.

Ashtavakra is the most precise touchstone. Don’t have faith in Ashtavakra, use Ashtavakra as a touchstone for your own experiences. Make Ashtavakra a witness.

Jesus said to his disciples, “I will be your witness when you arrive.” But his disciples misunderstood. The disciples understood that when they died and reach God’s heaven, then Jesus would bear witness that they were his disciples; “Let them come in – these are mine, they are Christians. Be especially compassionate to them. Let more blessings shower on them.”

But what Jesus meant is something completely different. Jesus said, “when you arrive I will be your witness” – this did not mean that Jesus would be standing there, but that what Jesus had said would be there as a touchstone. When your experience happens, immediately you can test it and unravel the knot. As it is, you have wandered around for so long in untruth, your eyes have become used to it. The shock of truth should not break you apart, should not drive you insane.

Remember, many seekers of truth have gone mad. Many seekers of truth have gone mad just as they neared the stage of becoming enlightened, they became deranged, because the happening is so vast, it is inconceivable, unbelievable. It is as if the whole sky has crashed on you.

Your pot is small and the infinite is raining in your pot. You will be shattered – you won’t be able to contain it. You are face to face with the sun and your eyes will be dazzled and then go dark. The sun is before you and all is darkness, your eyes will shut. At that moment you can use Ashtavakra’s statements to understand the sun. At that time, the voice of Ashtavakra that has been lying in your unconscious will immediately speak. The sutras of the Upanishads will start resounding, the Gita will echo, the Koran will echo – its verses will come forth! Their fragrance will assure you that you have come home, there is nothing to freak out about; this vastness is you.

Ashtavakra says that you are expansive, you are vast. You are omnipresent. You are void of action, uncorrupted. You are the ultimate reality. These statements will immediately give an explanation.

Merely having faith in them, merely holding on to them, will lead you nowhere. And greed is waiting within you, saying self-realization has not happened.

“To control desire, a continuous stream spreads out from the snake charmer’s pipe. Dense, impenetrable desire quivers in response….”

Listen to it again: “To control desire, a continuous stream spreads out from the snake charmer’s pipe. Dense, impenetrable desire quivers in response like a cobra whose coil is motionless, while the hood dances to and fro.”

You want to become free of desire, but still you spread out a net of desire. You want to be completely clean and pure but still you do it by means of greed, still desire goes on quivering.

See how an alone, uncrowded desire quivers. The snake’s coil is motionless, now only the hood dances to and fro. You have gone to attain God, but your way of attaining is the same as for attaining money. You go to seek God but your desire, your passion is the same as the one who is after material things. Your madness is the same as the madness of one who wants to attain the world. The object of desire has changed, but the desire has not changed.

Listening to Ashtavakra your desire says: “Wow, this is great! I never knew that what I am seeking is already attained. So now I will just sit.” Then you will wait: “Did it happen yet? Did it happen yet? Did it happen yet?…” Desire goes on quivering. “Did it happen yet?” – You haven’t understood.

Listen to Ashtavakra again. Ashtavakra says it is already attained. But how can you hear it, how can you understand it? – Your desire goes on quivering. Until you have chased after your desires, until you have seen the worthlessness of chasing after them, run and fallen down and scraped yourself, you won’t be able to understand. Only through the experience of desire does desire become worthless. Exhausted it falls down broken – in this moment of desirelessness you will understand that what you have been seeking has already happened.

Otherwise you repeat like a parrot. It doesn’t make the slightest difference if you are a Hindu parrot or a Muslim parrot or a Jaina, a Christian, a Buddhist – a parrot is a parrot. A parrot may recite The Bible, a parrot may recite the Koran. A parrot is a parrot, he will go on repeating.

“Inside the temple all bathed and rubbed down, in full voice, engrossed, throats open in loud tones, extremely well practiced they go on chanting Ram-Ram. Inside themselves they are all deaf-mutes, repeating meaninglessly without understanding, dwarfs. But outside the most childish, the most loudmouthed.”

Look in the temples! “Inside the temple, all bathed and rubbed down, in full voice, engrossed….” People seem so innocent in the temples. Look in the market at the same faces that you see in the temples. Their coverings appeared different in the temples. ”… Throats open in loud tones, extremely well practiced….” You must have seen people taking up a rosary and chanting. Wrapped in a blanket printed with Ram-ram, with sandal paste on the forehead – what a spotless, radiant image! When you meet the same man in the market, in the crowds, you won’t be able to recognize him. People have different faces: they wear one face in the market, they wear another face in the temple.

“… Engrossed, throats open in loud tones, extremely well practiced they go on chanting Ram-Ram. Inside themselves they are all deaf-mutes, repeating meaninglessly without understanding, dwarfs. But outside the most childish, the most loudmouthed.” Information can make you a parrot, can give you a big mouth. It can give you the illusion of being religious, can give deceptions. But don’t think it is wisdom. And on the basis of information the conviction that you put forward will be sitting on doubt, riding on the shoulders of doubt. This conviction cannot take you to the door of truth. Don’t put much faith in this conviction – it is worthless.

Faith must come from your own experience. Faith must come from the pure formlessness of your own meditation.

From Enlightenment: The Only Revolution, Discourse #6   Enlightenment- The Only Revolution

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

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

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

%d bloggers like this: