Not Twoness

One summer day when I was Junior High School age, I must have been 13 or 14, I was sitting across the street from the house of two brothers who were friends of mine. They were eating lunch and I was waiting for them to finish so that we could continue on our day’s routine of playing in the neighborhood, riding our bikes, smoking in the woods, all the things that we liked to do.

While I was sitting on the ground under a big tree with stick in hand and drawing circles in the dirt, time stopped, and for a brief moment a window of nowness opened. In that moment, all movement of time came to a standstill, and I was being in the eternal now. It was as if a portal into reality had opened. I knew it was significant but that was all I knew. It only lasted a couple of moments, seconds probably, but it made a deep impression in my consciousness. Of course, at the time, I would not have used such terminology as eternal now, portal, consciousness. In fact, I didn’t even mention the experience to my friends when they came out of their house, but this was my first experience of what we could call Oneness. In that moment, there was no separation, no demarcation, only beingness, conscious beingness.

Looking back, I can see that this experience unconsciously became a litmus test, a North Star, that guided my life on through experimentation with drugs, psychedelics, and finally, to discovering meditation. I would be willing to bet that every one of us who has found themselves interested in a life of discovery, anyone who is reading this now, has had some brush with naked reality.

It is clear that this reality I stumbled upon is always present, it is only that most of the time I am not present to meet it and dissolve into it. Meditation has been the key to shining a light on what it is that is standing between my consciousness and this experience of nowness, and that is mind, thought. It is thought, the me, which obscures the perception of reality. It has been my experience that through meditation the movement of thought becomes illuminated. And it is this ‘seeing’ of thought that is the exit.

For many years following this first awakening, I was unconsciously searching to replicate that profound happening, beginning with becoming unconscious through alcohol. Unconsciousness is a type of oneness, as is sleep, but it is unconscious, and so is missing a key element of the experience that had happened years before. Next it was on to smoking marijuana, certainly much closer to the happening but dependent on a foreign substance, not a natural state. Then it was on to psychedelics, which were incredibly helpful in seeing how mind works, first in seeing thought in action, and then in seeing that I was the one who was supporting the movement of thought through identification.

This discovery of the workings of mind inevitably led to discovering meditation, first through the teachings and being of Meher Baba, and eventually, of course, to Osho.

I arrived in Poona in 1976 and every nook and corner of the Ashram was exuding Oneness. Upon entering the gate, one was absorbed into the vastness that lived in Lao Tzu house. We sang in Music Group and were lost in ecstasy. We did our groups and had glimpses of being outside of our little ego selves. We did the active meditations and rays of sunshine would find their way out from the center of our being. And, of course, we sat in discourse and darshan and the sun itself lovingly dismantled all the clouds obscuring the brilliance of our inner light, the Oneness within.

At the Ranch we witnessed Oneness in action. We saw what could happen when a group of meditators worked without the need for approval or compensation. We worked and loved the working, but this oneness was a group oneness, a collective. It did give us another opportunity to experience a certain type of oneness, but because it was a group oneness, it was a oneness that was by definition opposed to the ‘not group,’ to the outside, and therefore could not be sustainable, definitely could not be eternal.

It was after the Ranch that I realized I had to dive deep into inquiry, into meditation. I had to find that oneness that had been experienced so many years before for myself, without the aid of drugs or others. I had to rediscover exactly what was standing in the way of my own experiencing of oneness in this moment.

And so, it was time for doubling down on meditation. It was time to discover for myself what is this ‘witnessing’ that Osho keeps talking about. Do I really know for myself? And in this quest, I became deeply attracted to self-inquiry and the path of advaita, non-duality.

In one of the discourses where Osho is talking about advaita, he says something that had a strong impact on me. He says, and I am paraphrasing here, that advaita means not-two, and so it is easy to translate that as one, or oneness, but he says that there is a difference in how the two words or phrases feel or act on you. When you say or think the word ‘one’ or ‘oneness,’ there is a contraction, a solidification, it feels like an object. But when you say ‘not-two,’ there is a letting go, and so is a much better pointer to the actual experiencing of oneness.

Similarly, in a workshop that Jean Klein, a Western Advaita teacher gave in Boulder, Colorado, in one of those moments when meditation is exuding all around, I asked Jean, “So is this it, just more and more subtle?” And Jean responded, “I would say less and less conditioned.”

And that is the key. It is not that we need to be searching for this thing called ‘oneness,’ but that we have to simply see what it is that is preventing us from Being in this Eternal Now that we refer to as oneness, or perhaps better described as not twoness. And that takes me back to meditation.

By meditation, I mean closing my eyes, sitting in a not uncomfortable but alert position and watching whatever appears on the screen of my consciousness. Sometimes it is a cacophony, and sometimes it is just a meandering quiet stream. But whichever, I watch, and every time that I forget and I become aware that I have forgotten, I am back to watching. Slowly, slowly I discover how to watch without judging, without grasping, without rejecting, and without analyzing. And in this watchingness, the flow of traffic decreases and occasionally gaps appear, gaps in which there are no thoughts. And when there are no thoughts, there is no movement of time, there are no obstructions to experiencing this same Eternal Now that was stumbled upon so many years ago. But this time it is conscious, it is not accidental, and it does not depend on any circumstance, substance, or any other person. And these moments cannot but infuse our everyday life with more lightness of being.

-purushottama

This is from the collection of stories, essays, poems and insights that is compiled to form the book From Lemurs to Lamas: Confessions of a Bodhisattva. Download a PDF or order the book Here.

Negative Projection, a Technique of Visualization – Osho

Mind itself means projection, so unless you transcend the mind, whatever you come to experience is projection. Mind is the projecting mechanism. If you experience any visions of light, of bliss, even of the divine, these are all projections. Unless you come to a total stopping of the mind you are not beyond projections; you are projecting. When mind ceases, only then are you beyond the danger. When there is no experience, no visions, nothing objective – the consciousness remaining as a pure mirror with nothing reflected in it – only then are you beyond the danger of projections.

Projections are of two types. One type of projection will lead you to more and more projection. It is a positive projection; you can never go beyond it. The other type of projection is negative. It is a projection, but it helps you to go beyond projections.

In meditation, you use the projecting faculty of the mind as a negative effort. Negative projections are good: it is just like one thorn being pulled out by another thorn or one poison being destroyed by another poison. But you must be constantly aware that the danger remains until everything ceases, even these negative projections, even these visions. If you are experiencing something, I will not say it is meditation; it is still contemplation, it is still a thought process. However subtle, it is still thinking. When only consciousness remains with no thought – just an unclouded, open sky – when you cannot say what “I” am experiencing, this much can be said: I am.

The famous maxim of Descartes, “Cogito ergo sum – I think; therefore, I am,” in meditation becomes “Sum ergo sum – I am; therefore, I am.” This “I am-ness” precedes all thinking; you are before you think. Thinking comes later on; your being precedes it, so being cannot be inferred from thinking. You can be without thinking, but thinking cannot be without you, so thinking cannot be the basis upon which your existence can be proved.

Experiences, visions, anything felt objectively is part of thinking. Meditation means total cessation of the mind, of thinking, but not of consciousness. If consciousness also ceases, you are not in meditation but in deep sleep; that is the difference between deep sleep and meditation.

In deep sleep projection also ceases. Thinking will not be there, but simultaneously, consciousness will also be absent. In meditation projections cease, thinking ceases, thoughts are no more there – just like in deep sleep – but there is consciousness. You are aware of this phenomenon: of total absence around you, of no objects around you. And when there are no objects to be known, felt and experienced, for the first time you begin to feel yourself. This is a nonobjective experience. It is not something that you experience; it is something you are.

So even if you feel the divine existence, it is a projection. These are negative projections. They help – they help, in a way, to transcend – but you must be aware that they are still projections, otherwise you will not go beyond them. That is why I say that if you feel you are encountering bliss, you are still in the mind because duality is there: the duality of the divine and the nondivine, the duality of bliss and nonbliss. When you really reach to the ultimate, you cannot feel bliss, because nonbliss is impossible; you cannot feel the divine as divine because the nondivine is no more.

So remember this: mind is projection, and whatever you do with the mind is going to be a projection. You cannot do anything with the mind. The only thing is how to negate the mind, how to drop it totally, how to be mindlessly conscious. That is meditation. Only then can you know, can you come to know, that which is other than projection.

Whatever you know is projected by you. The object is just a screen: you go on projecting your ideas, your mind, upon it. So any method of meditation begins with projection – with negative projection –and ends with nonprojection. That is the nature of all meditation techniques, because you have to begin with the mind.

Even if you are going toward a state of no mind, you have to begin with the mind. If I am to go out of this room, I have to start by going into the room; the first step must be taken in the room. This creates confusion. If I am just going in a circle in the room, then I am walking in the room. If I am going out of the room, then again I have to walk in the room – but in a different way. My eyes must be on the door and I must travel in a straight line, not in a circle.

Negative projection means walking straight out of the mind. But first, you have to take some steps within the mind.

For example, when I say “light,” you have never really seen light. You have only seen lighted objects. Have you ever seen light itself? No one has seen it; no one can see it. You see a lighted house, a lighted chair, a lighted person, but you have not seen light itself. Even when you see the sun you are not seeing light. You are seeing the light returned.

You cannot see light itself. When light strikes something, comes back, is reflected, only then do you see the lighted object and because you can see the lighted object, you say there is light. When you do not see the lighted object, you say it is dark.

You cannot see pure light, so in meditation I use it as a first step – as a negative projection. I tell you to begin to feel light without any object. Objects are dropped, there is just light. Begin to feel light without any objects . . . One thing has been dropped, the object, and without the object you cannot continue to see light for a long time. Sooner or later the light will drop, because you have to be focused on some object.

Then I tell you to feel bliss. You have never felt bliss without any object; whatever you know as happiness, bliss, is concerned with something. You have never known any moment of bliss that is unconcerned with anything. You may love someone and then feel blissful, but that someone is the object. You feel blissful when you listen to some music, but then that music is the object. Have you ever felt a blissful moment without any object? Never! So when I say to feel blissful without any object, it seems to be an impossibility. If you try to feel blissful without any object, sooner or later the bliss will stop, because it cannot exist by itself.

Then I say to feel divine presence. I never say, “Feel God,” because then God becomes an object. Have you ever felt presence without someone being present there? It is always concerned with someone: if someone is there, then you begin to feel the presence.

I drop that someone totally. I simply say, feel the divine presence. This is a negative projection. It cannot continue for long because there is no ground to support it; sooner or later it will drop. First I drop objects, and then, by and by, projection itself will drop. That is the difference between positive and negative projection.

In positive projection, the object is significant and the feeling follows, while in negative projection the feeling is important and the object is simply forgotten, as if I am taking the whole ground from under your feet. From within you, below you, from everywhere, the ground has been taken and you are left alone with your feeling. Now that feeling cannot exist; it will drop. If objects are not there, then the feelings that are directly connected to objects cannot continue any longer. For a while you can project them, then they will drop. And when they drop you alone remain there – in your total aloneness. That point is the point of meditation; from there meditation begins. Now you are out of the room.

So meditation has a beginning in the mind, but that is not real meditation. Begin in the mind, so that you can move toward meditation, and when mind ceases and you are beyond it, then real meditation begins. We have to begin with the mind because we are in the mind. Even to go beyond it, one has to use it. So use the mind negatively, never positively, and then you will achieve meditation.

If you use the mind positively, then you will only create more and more projections. So whatever is known as “positive thinking” is absolutely anti-meditative. Negative thinking is meditative; negation is the method for meditation. Go on negating to the point where nothing remains to be negated, and only the negator remains; then you are in your purity, and then you know what is. Everything that is known before that is just the mind’s imaginings, dreamings, projections.

-Osho

From Meditation: The Art of Ecstasy, Appendix 1

Copyright © OSHO International Foundation

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Now Wake Up! – Osho

Kabir says:

My inside, listen to me, the greatest spirit,

the teacher, is near,

wake up, wake up!

The original is:

Parmatma guru nikat viraje,

jag jag man mere . . .

Your real Master, your God, is very close by. You need not go to Kaaba or to Kashi in search of him. He is so close by that even to say that he is close by is not right, because closeness also shows a little distance. He is exactly you! God asleep – that’s what you are. If you awake you need not go anywhere else.

The difference between you and a Buddha is not the difference of any physical distance, is not the difference of any quantitative changes. The distance is only of one thing, otherwise you are exactly the same: you are asleep, he is awake. Open your eyes and you are a Buddha, be awake and you are a Buddha.

Parmatma guru nikat viraje . . .

For whom are you searching? He is just within you, and He is the real Master. The outer Master only functions as a mirror; he simply shows you who you are. He does not impose anything upon you, he only reflects.

The pseudo-Master imposes things upon you. He teaches you this and that, he conditions you, makes you a Hindu or a Mohammedan or a Christian, creates great greed in you for the other world, for heavenly pleasures, makes you afraid of hell. He is using a very psychological strategy.

That’s what the most materialistic school of psychologists goes on teaching, the school of the behaviorists – Watson, Skinner, Pavlov. Their whole teaching is that man can be conditioned only by two things, and those two things are fear of punishment and greed for reward – punishment and reward. That’s how they go on working on rats, and when they succeed in conditioning a rat they think the same can be done with man. They don’t give you more respect than they give to the rats.  And in a way they are right; about ninety-nine percent of you they are right. They are not right only when a person is awake; they are not right about a Buddha. Otherwise, humanity works almost like rats, there is not much difference. The rats function through punishment and reward, and that’s how man functions.

The false Master simply makes you afraid of hell, greedy for heaven, and through this strategy he exploits you. The real Master does not make you afraid and does not make you greedy either. Then what is the function of a real Master?

The function of the real Master is to be a pure mirror so you can see your own face, so that you can recognize your own face. Once you have seen your own heart throbbing in the mirror, your own being reflected, you will become aware of the inner Master.

The function of the outer Master is to make you aware of the inner Master. Once that is done then the outer mirror is no longer needed. You may remain grateful to it because it helped you, you may remain thankful to it for ever and ever, but it is no longer needed. The real Master works hard so that he is no longer needed. His success will simply make him unneeded.

The false Master works in such a way that he is always needed, that without him you cannot move a single inch. He makes you dependent on him. He does not give you awareness, eyes to see, to function; he gives you ready-made formulas. And of course, life goes on changing, and those formulas become out-of-date every day. […]

The real Master never gives you principles, he gives you only insights. He gives you understanding, not commandments. He simply makes you more aware so whatsoever the situation is you can always respond to the situation on your own. You need not follow a certain fixed principle. He makes you more fluid, more flexible, because life goes on changing and if you are very, very inflexible you will suffer.

Parmatma guru nikat viraje

Jag jag man mere. . . Kabir says: The only thing worth doing is to wake up my mind. The God, the real guru, is inside. The word ‘guru’ is untranslatable. Neither does the word ‘teacher’ nor the word ‘Master’ have that beauty. In fact, the phenomenon of the guru is so deeply Indian that no other language of any country is capable of translating it. It is something intrinsically Eastern. The word ‘guru’ is made of two words, ‘gu’ and ‘ru’. ’Gu’ means darkness, ‘ru’ means one who dispels it. Guru literally means ‘the light’. And you have the light within you, yes! If you come across a Buddha or a Jesus or a Krishna or a Mahavir, it will be of tremendous help to you in finding your inner guru, because seeing Buddha, suddenly a great enthusiasm and hope will arise in you: “If it can happen to Buddha” – who is just like you, the same body, the same blood, bone, marrow – “if it can happen to this man, why not to me?” The hope is the beginning. Meeting with the Master on the outside is the beginning of a great hope, a great aspiration.

And this can happen only if you meet a living Master. It cannot happen just by reading about Buddha, because who knows whether this man was really historical or not? And the way the story is being told is such that nobody can believe that he was historical.

The followers always go on creating more and more unnecessary stories about their Masters. Maybe they do it with good intentions, but even good intentions coming out of unconscious people are of no use; they are harmful. Maybe they want to impress people so people can become more attracted, but what really happens is just the opposite.

Now the Buddhist story is that when Buddha was born, the mother was standing, was walking in a garden. Buddha was born while the mother was walking. And not only that, the first thing that he did was that he himself walked seven steps. The first thing the child did – he walked seven steps! Not only that, the second thing that he did after the seventh step was that he declared, looking at the sky, “I am the awakened one, I am the great Buddha! Nobody has ever been like me and nobody will ever be like me.”

Now these stupid stories naturally make intelligent people suspicious. And one thing is absolutely certain: that Buddha is not like us, so maybe, perhaps, he became enlightened, but he gives no hope to us. Jesus is born of a virgin mother – nonsense, patent nonsense! But how can you become enlightened? You are not born of a virgin mother. Krishna is born as God, he is an incarnation of God; you are not an incarnation of God.

Rather than these stories creating a hope in you, they create a kind of hopelessness.

You need living Masters who have not yet become myths. You need living Masters who are just like you and yet different, just like you but with something plus, something mysterious surrounding them in every other way the same as you, but only in one respect different: they have a certain understanding which is missing in you, they have a certain luminosity which is missing in you, they have a certain grace, a certain climate which is missing with you. But in every other way they are exactly like you: they fall ill, they need food, they become thirsty, they are tired, they have to go to sleep; they are just exactly like you in every possible way. Then great hope arises: maybe the ‘one plus’ thing that has happened to them is also latent in you and can become manifest.

The outer Master is simply a mirror so that you can see your face, so that you can see that you also have the same face, the same possibility, the same potential. And once this has settled in your heart, that “I have also the same potential, the same seed,” a great journey has started. You will never be the same again. Looking into the eyes of a living Master, something synchronizes in you, something is triggered in your being, a process has already started.

My inside, listen to me, the greatest spirit the teacher, is near, wake up, wake up!

But we have been asleep so long, for millions of years, for millions of lives, that sleep has become a deep-rooted habit, almost our nature. So it is possible that you may even be with a living Master and miss, because the mind goes on creating new ways to go on sleeping, new rationalizations. The mind will say, “Now I have found the guru, I have found the Master. Now what more is needed? It is enough. Now by his blessings I will become enlightened one day.”

Now this is a trick of the mind. Blessings are of immense help, but only blessings will not make you enlightened. Otherwise one Master would make the whole earth enlightened, because his heart is not miserly about blessings. He can bless the whole world – he blesses the whole world – but just his blessings won’t do.

But the mind can give you these ideas – that there is no need for you to wake up. The mind always thinks in its own old patterns.

A teacher was checking her children’s knowledge of proverbs.

“Cleanliness is next to what?” she asked. “Impossible!” a small boy replied with great feeling.

Now the boy knows that the most difficult thing is cleanliness, just next to impossible. His response comes out of his experience.

When you are with a living Master your responses are bound to come from your own experience. There is every possibility you may distort. The Master may mirror your real face, but you may close your eyes, you may start dreaming about your face, you may project something else.

“What did you learn in school today?” a mother asked her young son.

He replied, “We learned that one and one, the son of a bitch makes two. Two and two, the son of a bitch makes four. Four and four, the son of a bitch makes eight.”

The mother was shocked. She went to school and complained to the teacher, “How could you teach your class such a terrible thing?”

“Madam,” said the teacher, “I taught them ‘one and one, the sum of which makes two’.”

The real Master can also be misunderstood, misinterpreted. He may reflect your face, but you may go on seeing something else. You have been asleep so long that you will need to be shocked again and again.

Hence a constant companionship with the Master is needed; it can’t be a hit-and-run affair. A few people come here and they say, “We have come here for three days. Is something possible?” They don’t see the absurdity of it. They don’t see how long they have been asleep; they want to be awakened within three days. In fact, by the way they say that they are here for three days, it seems as if they are obliging me by being here for three days. Even if in three lives you become awakened, that would be too early.

And yes, still I say it can happen in a single moment – it depends on you. […]

My inside, listen to me, the greatest spirit

the teacher, is near,

wake up, wake up!

Run to his feet –

he is standing close to your head right now.

The original is:

Dhaya ke pitam charanam lage, sai khada sir tere . . .

The original has some beauty in it:

Dhaya ke pitam charanam lage. . . Don’t waste time, not even a single moment. Run, fall at the feet of the beloved. He has been standing there for so long, waiting and waiting for you. For lives and lives God has been waiting for you; His patience is infinite. There are only two things that are infinite: God’s patience and man’s stupidity!

If you are fortunate enough to be in the presence of a Master, look into his eyes and RUSH inwards. Don’t waste time! Dhaya ke pitam charanam lage . . .

The beloved is within you, the worshipper is the worshipped. The beloved is within you; you just need to go to the very core of your being. Descend from the head to the heart, and from the heart to the being. Move from thinking to feeling and from feeling to being. Just be! and that is the meeting with the beloved. And the meeting has already been happening, you are just not aware, you are just unconscious.

Run to his feet – He is standing close to your head right now. And without finding Him you will remain dissatisfied, discontented. Whatsoever you do, everything is doomed to fail. Except God, nothing succeeds. They say, “Nothing succeeds like success,” and I say to you: Nothing fails like success. Once you succeed in your so-called worldly matters – money, power, prestige, respectability – then you will know that all has failed. The money is there and so is your inner poverty; it has not changed even an iota. In fact because of the richness now you will become more and more aware of your inner poverty; in contrast, you will be able to see it more.

That’s why poor people look a little more satisfied than the rich – not that the poor people are satisfied, not that poverty has something spiritual about it, not that poverty has to be preached. Enough of all those stupid things that have been told to people down the ages! But the poor person looks a little satisfied for a totally different reason. The reason is, he has nothing to compare himself with, he has no contrast. He is a white line drawn on a white board. The rich man is a white line drawn on a blackboard . . .  the contrast.

The richer a country gets, the more frustrated it becomes. Indians brag very much; they think their satisfaction, their so-called contentment, has something to do with spirituality. It has nothing to do with spirituality at all! It is a simple psychological fact: you are so poor you cannot afford even to be discontented. Only rich people can afford to be discontented. Only rich people really become aware of discontentment.

But one thing is certain: whatsoever you attain – you can become rich, you can become respectable, you can become virtuous, you can become a so-called saint, a mahatma, worshipped by thousands of people – but if you have not attained the inner beloved you will remain poor, you will remain in misery deep down, you will remain in darkness.

No one is ever satisfied. Poor men wish they were rich, rich men wish they were handsome, bachelors wish they were married, and married men wish they were dead, and so on and so forth, it goes and it goes . . .

Have you ever come across a person who is really contented? If you come across a person who is really contented, then be with him, then imbibe as much of the vibes of his being as possible, because that is the only way to find your inner beloved. The person who is contented must have found him.

Buddhas are surrounded by tremendous contentment, a great silence, almost tangible; you can touch it, you can feel its texture. Buddhas are surrounded by great grace; if you are not closed you will be overwhelmed by it. Buddhas are just pure love; if your hearts are open and beating, if you are still alive, then immediately a great dance will arise in your being. You will start celebrating immediately, because seeing the Buddha you will become immediately aware of the inner Buddha that has been asleep so long. But so what? Even if you have been asleep for millions of lives it makes no difference, you can wake up right now, this very moment.

You have slept for millions and millions of years

Says Kabir –

Why not wake up this morning?

Jugan jugan tohi sobat bita ajahu na savere? . . .

Don’t be foolish anymore! The time has come, This is the time!

Buddhas always speak of this moment.

Ajahyu na jag sabere? . . .  The morning has come. THIS is the morning for which you have been waiting for so long, This is the moment! Buddhas know only one time, that is now, and only one place, that is here. Their time is always now and their space is always here. They don’t talk about the yesterdays and they don’t talk about the tomorrows.

Ajahyu na jag sabere?. . . The morning has come, and you are still asleep? Are you not going to wake up? Are you not going to wake up and see the sun rising? You have missed so long, so long, but forget all about it; you can still wake up, it is still early. Whenever you wake up, it is early.

But the weight of the old habits is not easy to throw away. You listen, you may even feel a little understanding arising, but still your investment is in the sleep. You have been dreaming such beautiful dreams in your sleep, and now suddenly Kabir comes, and he says, “Wake up!” You would like to awake, but not right now – and the insistence of the Masters is RIGHT NOW. They don’t want to wait; they start shaking you. You feel angry, naturally. All the great Buddhas of the world have created great anger in people against them for a simple reason: they disturb your sleep, and who wants to be disturbed? and particularly in the early morning when it is cold, and you would like to have a turnover and pull the blanket and tuck yourself in again just a little more, and you are having such a beautiful dream. Particularly in the early morning, people have beautiful dreams. You have become the president of America or something, and here comes Kabir and says, “Wake up!”

Ajahyu na jag sabere?. . . The morning has come. And what are you doing here? You would like to tell him, “Shut up! Is this the moment to wake me up? It has been a hard, hard struggle for me to become the president of America. Somehow I have managed, now here you come. Where had you been before?” The weight of the dreams, of the sleep, of all the investments is great.

A man arrived at the Pearly Gates, and on being asked his name replied, “Charlie Graball.” “I don’t think we have any notice of your coming,” he was informed. “What was your occupation in earthly life?”

“Scrap metal merchant,” the visitor said.

“Oh,” said the angel, “I will go and enquire.”

When he returned Charlie Graball had disappeared. So had the Pearly Gates.

Old habits! . . .  A scrap metal merchant . . . even at the gate of heaven! Who cares about heaven? When you can escape with the gate, who bothers about heaven?

And this is the reason why people go on finding new excuses to go on sleeping. You cannot believe how much you have invested in your sleep. And the most cunning thing that the mind can do is to make you convinced that you are not asleep at all, that you are already awake: “Kabir must be talking to somebody else.”

That’s what happens when I am talking here – you always think that I must be talking about other people. I am talking about you! Sometimes it happens that when I go on looking for two, three seconds at one person, he starts looking here and there: I must be looking at somebody else – because nobody can think that he is Charlie Graball, no. It is always somebody else. This is one of the most powerful strategies of the mind to keep you asleep.

Gurdjieff used to tell a story again and again:

There was once a magician who had many sheep. Every day one fat sheep was to be killed for him, and of course – sheep are not so foolish as man! – they became alert. One thing was certain, that everybody was to be killed one day or other. They started escaping into the hills, into the forest. The magician was at a loss as to what to do; the sheep were becoming aware about their destiny.

Then he invented a strategy: he gathered all the sheep, hypnotized them, and told every sheep different things. For example, he told a few, “You are exceptional, you are not ordinary. What happens to others is never going to happen to you.” Since that day those sheep stopped escaping. You could have killed another sheep in front of them, but they were not afraid any more because they knew they were exceptional.

Just watch your mind deep down – you all have that idea, that “I am exceptional.”

One Arabian proverb says that when God creates a man and sends him into the world, before He drops him, He always whispers one thing in his ear: “You are unique, exceptional.” He goes on playing that joke, and every person carries that deep down in his heart, that “I am exceptional.” That’s why you go on seeing people dying, but you never think, “I am going to die.” It is always somebody else who dies, it is never I – “I am exceptional.”

. . . To a few other sheep that he hypnotized, he told, “You are lions, you are not sheep at all.” And since that day they stopped escaping; they started roaring like lions.

To a few other sheep he told, “You are not sheep, you are men. You are here to keep all the other sheep imprisoned. You are to help me; you are my friends.” Since that day those sheep became detectives against their own friends. They would inform the magician that a certain sheep was trying to escape.

To a few others he even told, “You are magicians – not only men but magicians. You can do miracles! You are immortal!”

Once he had done these strategies no sheep were escaping, and every day they were butchered.

And every day you are butchered. Every day somebody dies, somebody is killed, somebody is murdered, somebody commits suicide. Every day it is going on, but somehow, deep down, you go on believing you are exceptional. When somebody goes mad you think, “Poor fellow.” You don’t think that you can also go mad . . . because the difference between you and mad people is not much; it is very nominal, very minimal, only of degrees. Maybe you are at ninety-nine degrees and he is at a hundred and one; just one degree more and you cross the boundary, and you are mad. Just one day before that other person was also as normal as you are – now he is mad. Today you are normal, tomorrow you can be mad. But in our deep sleep we have auto-hypnotized ourselves. This auto-hypnosis is what is meant by sleep, metaphysical sleep.

Jugan jugan tohi sobat bita ajahu na savere? How long have you remained auto-hypnotized, in a deep metaphysical slumber? And the dawn has come. Now wake up! It is time! Now don’t postpone any more, you have postponed enough.

Why not wake up this morning?

There is a flag no one sees blowing in the gagan,

 in the sky temple.

A blue cloth has been stretched up,

it is decorated with the moon and many jewels.

Gagan math gaib nisan ure

chandrahar chandva Jahan tange, mutata -manik marhe. . .

. . . If you wake up, you will be surprised that you are living in such a tremendously beautiful world. But how can you know the beauty of it if you are asleep? You are not aware of the splendor that is showering all around. You are not aware of the glories of life, of the benediction that life is. How can you be aware of it? You are so deeply asleep, you are dreaming your private dreams, utterly unaware that the whole existence is a constant celebration.

There is a flag no one sees blowing in the sky temple. A blue cloth has been stretched up, it is decorated with the moon and many jewels.

It is a very mysterious existence. You cannot conceive more mystery, more miracles, more splendor, more beauty. It is the ultimate in all that one can imagine, but we are missing it. It is like a man who is asleep in the garden and cannot see the rose blooming and cannot hear the distant call of a lonely bird, and cannot see a bird on the wing, cannot see the sun and the moon and the stars. He is fast asleep. The fragrance from the roses comes to his nostrils but he cannot be aware of it; the fragrance of the wet earth, but he is unaware; the dewdrops shining like pearls in the morning sun, but he is unaware of it, he is fast asleep. This is our situation.

Why not wake up this morning? Ajahu na jag sabere? . . .

. . . The morning is knocking on the door, the sun is rising, the call has come, and you go on sleeping? This is the Master’s work: to go on hammering his disciples, to go on hammering; in some moment maybe . . . the disciple will wake up. There are moments when you are more vulnerable; there are moments when you are very hard, impossible to penetrate. There are moments when you are more flexible, more feminine. Hence the Master goes on hammering every day. He goes on, without taking any note of whether you listen or not. He knows one thing: that ultimately everybody has to listen. Finally, everybody HAS to listen.

The sun and the moon can be seen in that place;

when looking at that, bring your mind down to silence.

Mahima tasu dekh han thir kar, ravi-sasi jot jare.

Says Kabir: If you can do only one thing, if you can attain to silence, you will know the splendor of God.

Mahima tasu dekh . . . You can see that splendor; you can see that infinite beauty. That joy is yours. Just do one thing: become silent. It is another way of saying wake up – because the mind remains asleep because of so many thoughts. Sleep simply means a continuous thought process inside you, a procession of thoughts, a continuous traffic. And it is always rush hour there: day in, day out, thousands of thoughts and desires and imaginations and projections and memories go on rushing in a crowd. You are always surrounded by a big crowd; this is your sleep.

This inner talk has to stop. You can call it being awake, you can call it being silent – it is the same thing. To be silent is the way to be awake, or, to be awake is the way to be silent; both methods have been used.

Buddha uses the method of being silent so that you can be aware. Krishnamurti uses the method of being aware so that you can be silent. They both are two aspects of the same coin; if you have one you will have the other automatically.

Mahima tasu dekh man thir kar . . . Stop this constant traffic of the mind, stop this thought process. Then you can see the infinite Beauty . . . ravi-sasi jot jare . . . You will see the sun and the moon and the stars inside yourself. The whole sky is yours. Even the sky is not the limit – you are all. If you are ready to die as a drop you will become the ocean.

I will tell you the truth:

the man who has drunk from that liquid

wanders around like someone insane.

This world is almost a madhouse. To be sane here will look like becoming insane. […]

Kabir says: I will tell you the truth. I will not tell you to wake up without telling the truth. He is saying, “Let me tell you the truth: if you decide to wake up one thing is certain – you will be thought mad. You have to take that risk. Otherwise go on sleeping, go on dreaming, remain part of the mad crowd. Please don’t blame me later on.” That’s why Kabir says: I will tell you the truth.

If you decide to wake up . . . Maybe listening to Kabir or to Buddha or to me, you start deciding to wake up. The truth has to be told beforehand, before you decide to wake up. The man who has drunk from that liquid wanders around like someone insane.

You have to risk your so-called sanity. It is insanity! but you will have to risk it, and you will have to be ready to accept the world of the few sanest people. But they are very few – Mansoor and Jesus and Buddha and Kabir and Farid and Nanak…. They are very few, they can be counted on the fingers. If you wake up you will become part of that small, fortunate minority, but you will be thought insane by the people.

Kahe Kabir piye joi jan, mana firat mare.

Not only that you will live like a madman in the world, you will also die like a madman. But it is worth it; the risk is worth taking. It is better to be mad like Kabir than to be sane like Morarji Desai. It is better to be mad like Jesus than to be sane like Pontius Pilate. It is a great decision; guts are needed, great courage is needed.

Sannyas – initiation into the world of truth – is not for the cowards. Cowards can go on rationalizing, cowards can go on sleeping, dreaming. Cowards can even start dreaming that they are awake, but they will not risk. They will remain part of the mob, of the insane crowd. And of course their lives will remain of misery, of pain, of agony.

If you want to be ecstatic, risk – risk all. Only by risking all does one attain the all. Blessed are those who are drunk with God. Blessed are those who are mad for God. Blessed are those who are no more part of the insane crowd but have learned a new way of insanity – the way of the Buddhas. Kahe Kabir piye joi jan . . .

It is very rare that somebody decides, because it is very rare to be so courageous, so brave . . . mana firat mare

Then he lives like a madman, in utter ecstasy, in absolute benediction, and he dies in utter ecstasy, in an absolute benediction. Life can be a celebration and death too, but you will need to risk.

And that’s what my whole effort here is: to seduce you into risking all for God. Remember, you have slept enough and you have not found anything, you have dreamt enough and your hands are empty, you have thought enough and where have you arrived? Now wake up.

Friend, now wake up!

Enough for today?

-Osho

From The Guest, Discourse #10

Copyright © OSHO International Foundation

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

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Why Should I not be Disturbed? – J. Krishnamurti

Question: If I am perfectly honest, I have to admit that I resent, and at times hate, almost everybody. It makes my life very unhappy and painful. I understand intellectually that I am this resentment, this hatred; but I cannot cope with it. Can you show me a way?

Krishnamurti: What do we mean by “intellectually?” When we say that we understand something intellectually, what do we mean by that? Is there such a thing as intellectual understanding? Or is it that the mind merely understands the words, because that is our only way of communicating with each other? Can we, however, really understand anything merely verbally, mentally? That is the first thing we have to be clear about: whether so-called intellectual understanding is not an impediment to understanding. Surely understanding is integral, not divided, not partial? Either I understand something or I don’t. To say to oneself, “I understand something intellectually,” is surely a barrier to understanding. It is a partial process and therefore no understanding at all.

Now the question is this: “How am I, who am resentful, hateful, how am I to be free of, or cope with that problem?” How do we cope with a problem? What is a problem? Surely, a problem is something which is disturbing.

I am resentful, I am hateful; I hate people and it causes pain. And I am aware of it. What am I to do? It is a very disturbing factor in my life. What am I to do, how am I to be really free of it—not just momentarily slough it off but fundamentally be free of it? How am I to do it?

It is a problem to me because it disturbs me. If it were not a disturbing thing, it would not be a problem to me, would it? Because it causes pain, disturbance, anxiety, because I think it is ugly, I want to get rid of it. Therefore the thing that I am objecting to is the disturbance, isn’t it? I give it different names at different times, in different moods; one day I call it this and another something else, but the desire is, basically, not to be disturbed. Isn’t that it? Because pleasure is not disturbing, I accept it. I don’t want to be free from pleasure, because there is no disturbance—at least, not for the time being. But hate and resentment are very disturbing factors in my life and I want to get rid of them.

My concern is not to be disturbed and I am trying to find a way in which I shall never be disturbed. Why should I not be disturbed? I must be disturbed to find out, must I not? I must go through tremendous upheavals, turmoil, and anxiety to find out, must I not? If I am not disturbed, I shall remain asleep and perhaps that is what most of us do want: to be pacified, to be put to sleep, to get away from any disturbance, to find isolation, seclusion, security. If I do not mind being disturbed—really, not just superficially—if I don’t mind being disturbed, because I want to find out, then my attitude towards hate and towards resentment undergoes a change, doesn’t it? If I do not mind being disturbed, then the name is not important, is it? The word “hate” is not important, is it? Or “resentment” against people is not important, is it? Because then I am directly experiencing the state which I call resentment without verbalizing that experience.

Anger is a very disturbing quality, as hate and resentment are, and very few of us experience anger directly without verbalizing it. If we do not verbalize it, if we do not call it anger, surely there is a different experience, is there not? Because we term it, we reduce a new experience or fix it in the terms of the old, whereas, if we do not name it, then there is an experience that is directly understood and this understanding brings about a transformation in that experiencing. Take, for example, meanness. Most of us, if we are mean, are unaware of it—mean about money matters, mean about forgiving people, you know, just being mean. I am sure we are familiar with that. Now, being aware of it, how are we going to be free from that quality? Not to become generous, that is not the important point. To be free from meanness implies generosity, you haven’t got to become generous. Obviously one must be aware of it. You may be very generous in giving a large donation to your society, to your friends, but awfully mean about giving a bigger tip; you know what I mean by “mean.” One is unconscious of it. When one becomes aware of it, what happens? We exert our will to be generous; we try to overcome it; we discipline ourselves to be generous and so on and so on. But, after all, the exertion of will to be something is still part of meanness in a larger circle, so if we do not do any of those things but are merely aware of the implications of meanness, without giving it a term, then we will see that there takes place a radical transformation.

Please experiment with this. First, one must be disturbed, and it is obvious that most of us do not like to be disturbed. We think we have found a pattern of life—the Master, the belief, whatever it is—and there we settle down. It is like having a good bureaucratic job and functioning there for the rest of one’s life. With that same mentality, we approach various qualities of which we want to be rid. We do not see the importance of being disturbed, of being inwardly insecure, of not being dependent. Surely it is only in insecurity that you discover, that you see, that you understand. We want to be like a man with plenty of money: at ease. He will not be disturbed; he doesn’t want to be disturbed.

Disturbance is essential for understanding and any attempt to find security is a hindrance to understanding. When we want to get rid of something which is disturbing, it is surely a hindrance. If we can experience a feeling directly, without naming it, I think we shall find a great deal in it: then there is no longer a battle with it because the experiencer and the thing experienced are one, and that is essential. So long as the experiencer verbalizes the feeling, the experience, he separates himself from it and acts upon it; such action is an artificial, illusory action. But if there is no verbalization, then the experiencer and the thing experienced are one. That integration is necessary and has to be radically faced.

– J. Krishnamurti

From The First and Last Freedom, Question 13

The Greater Sensitivity, the Greater the Detachment – Osho

With deepening meditation, one becomes more and more sensitive to objects, events and persons. But due to this heightened sensitivity one feels a sort of deep intimacy with everything, and this usually becomes a cause of subtle attachments. How to be sensitive and yet detached?

How to be sensitive and yet detached? These two things are not contraries, they are not opposites. If you are more sensitive, you will be detached; or, if you are detached, you will become more and more sensitive. Sensitivity is not attachment, sensitivity is awareness. Only an aware person can be sensitive. If you are not aware you will be insensitive. When you are unconscious you are totally insensitive – the more consciousness, the more sensitivity. A Buddha is totally sensitive, he has optimum sensitivity, because he will feel and he will be aware to his total capacity. But when you are sensitive and aware you will not be attached. You will be detached, because the very phenomenon of awareness breaks the bridge, destroys the bridge, between you and things, between you and persons, between you and the world. Unconsciousness, unawareness, is the cause of attachment.

If you are alert, the bridge suddenly disappears. When you are alert there is nothing to relate you to the world. The world is there, you are there, but between the two the bridge has disappeared. The bridge is made of your unconsciousness. So don’t think and feel that you become attached because you are more sensitive. No. If you are more sensitive you will not be attached. Attachment is a very gross quality; it is not subtle.

For attachment you need not be aware and alert. There is no need. Even animals can be attached very easily, rather, more easily. A dog is more attached to his master than any man can be. The dog is completely unconscious so attachment happens. That is why in the countries where human relationship has become poor, such as in the West, man goes on seeking relationship with animals, with dogs, with other animals, because the human relationship is no longer there. Human society is disappearing and every man feels isolated, alienated, alone. The crowd is there but you are not related to it. You are alone in the crowd and this aloneness scares. One becomes afraid and fearful.

When you are related, attached to someone, and someone is attached to you, you feel you are not alone in this world, in this strange world. Someone is with you. That feeling of belonging gives you a sort of security. When human relationship becomes impossible then men and women try to make relationships with animals. In the West they are very deeply related to dogs and other animals, but here in the East, although you may be worshipping cows you are not related to them. You may go on saying that you worship the cow as a divine animal, but your cruelty has no end.

In the East you are so cruel with your animals that the West cannot even conceive of how you can go on thinking that you are non-violent. All over the world, particularly in the West, there are many societies to protect animals from the cruelty of men. You cannot beat a dog in the West. If you beat it, it will be a criminal act and you will be punished for it. What is happening really, is that human relationship is dissolving – but man cannot live alone. He must have a relationship, a belonging, a feeling that someone is with him. Animals can be very good friends because they get so attached; no one, no man, can get that attached.

For attachment, awareness is not necessary; rather, awareness is the barrier. The more aware you become the less you will be attached, because the need for attachment disappears. Why do you want to be attached to someone? Because alone you feel you are not enough. You lack something. Something is incomplete in you. You are not a whole. You need someone to complete you. Hence, attachment. If you are aware, you are complete, you are a whole; the circle is now complete, nothing is lacking in you – you don’t need anyone. You, alone, feel a total independence, a feeling of wholeness.

That doesn’t mean that you will not love persons; rather, on the contrary, only you can love. A person who is dependent on you cannot love you: he will hate you. A person who needs you cannot love you. He will hate you because you become the bondage. He feels that without you he cannot live, without you he cannot be happy, so you are the cause of both his happiness and unhappiness. He cannot afford to lose you. This will give a feeling of imprisonment: he is imprisoned by you and he will resent it, he will fight against it. Persons hate and love together, but this love cannot be very deep. Only a person who is aware can love, because he doesn’t need you. But then love has a totally different dimension: it is not attachment; it is not dependence. He is not dependent on you and he will not make you dependent on him; he will remain a freedom and he will allow you to remain a freedom. You will be two free agents, two total, whole beings, meeting. That meeting will be a festivity, a celebration – not a dependence. That meeting will be a fun, a play.

That is why we have called Krishna’s life Krishna-leela, the play of Krishna. He loves so many persons but there is no attachment. The same is not true on the part of the gopis and the gopals, the friends and the girl friends of Krishna. The same is not true. They have become attached, so when Krishna moves from Vrindavan to Dwaraka, they weep and cry and suffer. Their anguish is great because they think that Krishna has forgotten them. He has not forgotten, but there is no pain because there was no dependence; he is as whole and happy in Dwaraka as he was in Vrindavan and his love is flowing as much in Dwaraka as it was in Vrindavan. The objects of love have changed but the source of love remains the same. So whosoever comes near him receives the gift. And this gift is unconditional: nothing is required as a return, nothing is asked as a return.

When love comes through an aware consciousness it is just a pure gift with no condition, and the person who is giving it is happy because he is giving it. The very act of giving is his bliss, his ecstasy.

So remember that if you feel that through meditation you have become more sensitive, then automatically you will become less attached, more detached. Because you will be more grounded in yourself, you will be more centered in yourself, you will not use somebody else as your center. What does attachment mean? Attachment means that you are using someone else as your center of being, Majanu is attached to Laila: he says he cannot live without Laila. That means the center of being has been transferred. If you say that you cannot live without this or that, then your soul is not within you. Then you are not existing as an independent unit, your center has moved somewhere else.

This movement of the center from yourself to something else, to the other, is attachment. If you are sensitive, you will feel the other, but the other will not become the center of your life. You will remain the center and out of this centering the other will receive many gifts from you. But they will be gifts, they will not be bargains. You will simply give because you have too much, you are an overflowing. And you will be thankful that the other has received it. That will be enough and that will be the end.

That is why I go on saying that the mind is a great deceiver. You think that you are meditating and that that is why you have become sensitive. Then the question of why you get attached arises. If you get attached, that is a clear symptom that the sensitivity is not because of awareness. Really, it is not sensitivity at all. It may be sentimentalism: that is a totally different thing. You can be sentimental: you can cry and weep over small things, you can be touched, and a storm can be created very easily within you – but that is sentimentalism, not sensitivity.

Let me tell you a story. Buddha was staying in a village. A woman came to him, weeping and crying and screaming. Her child, her only child, had suddenly died. Because Buddha was in the village, people said, “Don’t weep. Go to this man. People say he is infinite compassion. If he wills it, the child can revive. So don’t weep. Go to this Buddha.” The woman came with the dead child, crying, weeping, and the whole village followed her – the whole village was affected. Buddha’s disciples were also affected; they started praying in their minds that Buddha would have compassion. He must bless the child so that he will be revived, resurrected.

Many disciples of Buddha started weeping. The scene was so touching, deeply moving. Everybody was still. Buddha remained silent. He looked at the dead child, then he looked at the weeping, crying mother and he said to the mother, “Don’t weep, just do one thing and your child will be alive again. Leave this dead child here, go back to the town, go to every house and ask every family if someone has ever died in their family, in their house. And if you can find a house where no one has ever died, then from them beg something to be eaten, some bread, some rice, or anything – but from the house where no one has ever died. And that bread or that rice will revive the child immediately. You go. Don’t waste time.”

The woman became happy. She felt that now the miracle was going to happen. She touched Buddha’s feet and ran to the village which was not a very big one, very few cottages, a few families. She moved from one family to another, asking. But every family said, “This is impossible. There is not a single house – not only in this village but all over the earth – there is not a single house where no one has ever died, where people have not suffered death and the misery and the pain and the anguish that comes out of it.”

By and by the woman realized that Buddha had been playing a trick. This was impossible. But still the hope was there. She went on asking until she had gone around the whole village. Her tears dried, her hope died, but suddenly she felt a new tranquility, a serenity, coming to her. Now she realized that whosoever is born will have to die. It is only a question of years. Someone will die sooner, someone later, but death is inevitable. She came back and touched Buddha’s feet again and said to him, “As people say, you really do have a deep compassion for people.” No one could understand what had happened. Buddha initiated her into sannyas, she became a bhikkhuni, a sannyasin. She was initiated.

Anand asked Buddha, “You could have revived the boy. He was such a beautiful child and the mother was in such anguish.” But Buddha said, “Even if the child was resurrected, he would have had to die. Death is inevitable.” Anand said, “But you don’t seem to be very sensitive to people, to their misery and anguish.” Buddha replied, “I am sensitive; you are sentimental. Just because you start weeping, do you think you are sensitive? You are childish. You don’t understand life. You are not aware of the phenomenon.”

This is the difference between Christianity and Buddhism. Christ was reported to have done many miracles of reviving people. When Lazarus was dead, Jesus touched him and he came back to life. We in the East cannot conceive of Buddha touching a dead man and bringing him back to life. To ordinary persons, to the ordinary mind, Jesus would look more loving and compassionate than Buddha. But I say to you that Buddha is more sensitive, more compassionate, because even if Lazarus was revived, it made no difference. He still had to die. Finally, Lazarus had to die. So this miracle was of no use, of no ultimate value. One cannot conceive of Buddha doing such a thing.

Jesus had to because he was bringing something new, a new message to Israel. And the message was so deep that people would not understand it so he had to create miracles around it – because people can understand miracles but they cannot understand the deep message, the esoteric message. They can understand miracles, so through miracles they might become open and able to be receptive to the message. Jesus was carrying a Buddhist message to a land which was not Buddhist; an Eastern message to a country which had no tradition of enlightenment, of many Buddhas.

We can conceive that Buddha was more sensitive than his disciples who were weeping and crying. They were sentimental.

Don’t misunderstand your sentimentality for sensitivity. Sentimentality is ordinary; sensitivity is extraordinary. It happens through effort. It is an achievement. You have to earn it. Sentimentality is not to be earned; you are born with it. It is an animal inheritance which you already have in the cells of your body and your mind. Sensitivity is a possibility. You don’t have it already. You can create it, you can work for it – then it will happen to you. And whenever it happens, you will be detached.

Buddha was totally detached. The dead child was there but he didn’t seem to be affected at all. The woman, the mother, was miserable and he was playing a trick on her. This man seems to be cruel and this playing of a trick seems to be too much for a mother whose child has died. He gave her a riddle, and he knew well that she would come back empty-handed. But I say again that he has real compassion because he was helping this woman to grow, to be mature. Unless you can understand death you are not mature; and unless you can accept death, you don’t have a center within your being. When you accept death as a reality, you have transcended it.

Buddha used the situation. He was less concerned with the dead child and more concerned with the alive mother because he knew that the dead child would come back to life again – there was no need for the miracle. But if the child was revived the mother might have lost an opportunity. For lives together she might not again have a meeting with a Buddha. So in the East only third-rate saddhus have been doing miracles; the first-rate have never done any – they work on a higher level. Buddha is also doing a miracle but the miracle is being done on a very high level. The mother is being transformed.

But it is difficult to understand because our minds are gross and we only understand sentimentality, we cannot understand sensitivity. Sensitivity means an alertness which feels everything that happens around. And you can feel only when you are not attached. Remember this: if you are attached you are no longer there to feel, you have moved out of you. So if you want to know the truth about someone don’t ask his friends. They are attached. And don’t ask his enemies. They are also attached, in the reverse order. Ask someone who is neutral, neither a friend nor an enemy. Only he can say the truth.

Friends cannot be believed, enemies cannot be believed, but we believe either the friends or the enemies. Both are bound to be wrong because they don’t have a neutral witnessing, they don’t have a detached view. They cannot stand aloof and look because they have an investment in the person. Friends have an investment and enemies have an investment. They see according to particular viewpoints, and with those viewpoints they are attached. The moment you feel you are attached; you have taken a viewpoint. The totality is lost; only a fragmentary thing is in your hands. And fragments are always lies because only the whole is true.

Meditate, become more sensitive, and take it as a criterion that you will go on becoming more and more detached. If you feel that attachment is growing, then you are erring somewhere in your meditation. These are the criteria. And to me, attachment cannot be destroyed and detachment cannot be practiced. You can only practice meditation – and detachment will follow as a consequence, as a by-product. If meditation really flowers within you, you will have a feeling of detachment. Then you can move anywhere and you will remain untouched, unafraid. Then when you leave your body; you will leave it unscratched. Your consciousness will be absolutely pure, nothing foreign has entered into it. When you are attached, impurities enter into you. This is the basic impurity: that you are losing your center and somebody else or something else is becoming your center of being.

-Osho

From The Book of Secrets, Discourse #74, Q1

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

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

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

Zen is just Zen – Osho

Zen is just Zen. There is nothing comparable to it. It is unique—unique in the sense that it is the most ordinary and yet the most extraordinary phenomenon that has happened to human consciousness. It is the most ordinary because it does not believe in knowledge, it does not believe in mind. It is not a philosophy, not a religion either. It is the acceptance of the ordinary existence with a total heart, with one’s total being, not desiring some other world, supra-mundane, supra-mental. It has no interest in any esoteric nonsense, no interest in metaphysics at all. It does not hanker for the other shore; this shore is more than enough. Its acceptance of this shore is so tremendous that through that very acceptance it transforms this shore—and this very shore becomes the other shore:

This very body the Buddha;
This very earth the lotus paradise.

Hence it is ordinary. It does not want you to create a certain kind of spirituality, a certain kind of holiness. All that it asks is that you live your life with immediacy, spontaneity. And then the mundane becomes the sacred.

The great miracle of Zen is in the transformation of the mundane into the sacred. And it is tremendously extraordinary because this way life has never been approached before, this way life has never been respected before.

Zen goes beyond Buddha and beyond Lao Tzu. It is a culmination, a transcendence, both of the Indian genius and of the Chinese genius. The Indian genius reached its highest peak in Gautam the Buddha and the Chinese genius reached its highest peak in Lao Tzu.

And the meeting…the essence of Buddha’s teaching and the essence of Lao Tzu’s teaching merged into one stream so deeply that no separation is possible now. Even to make a distinction between what belongs to Buddha and what to Lao Tzu is impossible, the merger has been so total. It is not only a synthesis, it is an integration. Out of this meeting Zen was born. Zen is neither Buddhist nor Taoist and yet both.

To call Zen “Zen Buddhism” is not right because it is far more. Buddha is not as earthly as Zen is. Lao Tzu is tremendously earthly, but Zen is not only earthly: its vision transforms the earth into heaven. Lao Tzu is earthly, Buddha is unearthly, Zen is both—and in being both it has become the most extraordinary phenomenon.

The future of humanity will go closer and closer to the approach of Zen, because the meeting of the East and West is possible only through something like Zen, which is earthly and yet unearthly. The West is very earthly, the East is very unearthly. Who is going to become the bridge? Buddha cannot be the bridge; he is so essentially Eastern, the very flavor of the East, the very fragrance of the East, uncompromising. Lao Tzu cannot be the bridge; he is too earthly. China has always been very earthly. China is more part of the Western psyche than of the Eastern psyche.

It is not an accident that China is the first country in the East to turn communist, to become materialist, to believe in a godless philosophy, to believe that man is only matter and nothing else. This is not just accidental. China has been earthly for almost five thousand years; it is very Western. Hence Lao Tzu cannot become the bridge; he is more like Zorba the Greek. Buddha is so unearthly you cannot even catch hold of him—how can he become the bridge?

When I look all around, Zen seems to be the only possibility, because in Zen, Buddha and Lao Tzu have become one. The meeting has already happened. The seed is there, the seed of that great bridge which can make East and West one. Zen is going to be the meeting point. It has a great future—a great past and a great future.

And the miracle is that Zen is neither interested in the past nor in the future. Its total interest is in the present. Maybe that’s why the miracle is possible, because the past and the future are bridged by the present.

The present is not part of time. Have you ever thought about it? How long is the present?

The past has a duration, the future has a duration. What is the duration of the present?

How long does it last? Between the past and the future can you measure the present? It is immeasurable; it is almost not. It is not time at all: it is the penetration of eternity into time.

And Zen lives in the present. The whole teaching is: how to be in the present, how to get out of the past which is no more and how not to get involved in the future which is not yet, and just to be rooted, centered, in that which is.

The whole approach of Zen is of immediacy, but because of that it can bridge the past and the future. It can bridge many things: it can bridge the past and the future, it can bridge the East and the West, it can bridge body and soul. It can bridge the unbridgeable worlds: this world and that, the mundane and the sacred.

-Osho

From Ah, This!, Discourse #1

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

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

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

For Such a Mind, Self-inquiry will Become Easy – Ramana Maharshi

11. What is the means for constantly holding on to the thought ‘Who am I?’

R.M. When other thoughts arise, one should not pursue them, but should inquire: ‘To whom do they arise?’ It does not matter how many thoughts arise. As each thought arises, one should inquire with diligence, “To whom has this thought arisen?”. The answer that would emerge would be “To me”. Thereupon if one inquires “Who am I?”, the mind will go back to its source; and the thought that arose will become quiescent. With repeated practice in this manner, the mind will develop the skill to stay in its source. When the mind that is subtle goes out through the brain and the sense organs, the gross names and forms appear; when it stays in the heart, the names and forms disappear. Not letting the mind go out, but retaining it in the Heart is what is called “inwardness” (antarmukha). Letting the mind go out of the Heart is known as “externalisation” (bahir-mukha). Thus, when the mind stays in the Heart, the ‘I’ which is the source of all thoughts will go, and the Self which ever exists will shine. Whatever one does, one should do without the egoity “I”. If one acts in that way, all will appear as of the nature of Siva (God).

12. Are there no other means for making the mind quiescent?

R.M. Other than inquiry, there are no adequate means. If through other means it is sought to control the mind, the mind will appear to be controlled, but will again go forth. Through the control of breath also, the mind will become quiescent; but it will be quiescent only so long as the breath remains controlled, and when the breath resumes the mind also will again start moving and will wander as impelled by residual impressions. The source is the same for both mind and breath. Thought, indeed, is the nature of the mind. The thought “I” is the first thought of the mind; and that is egoity. It is from that whence egoity originates that breath also originates. Therefore, when the mind becomes quiescent, the breath is controlled, and when the breath is controlled the mind becomes quiescent. But in deep sleep, although the mind becomes quiescent, the breath does not stop. This is because of the will of God, so that the body may be preserved and other people may not be under the impression that it is dead. In the state of waking and in samadhi, when the mind becomes quiescent the breath is controlled. Breath is the gross form of mind. Till the time of death, the mind keeps breath in the body; and when the body dies the mind takes the breath along with it. Therefore, the exercise of breath-control is only an aid for rendering the mind quiescent (manonigraha); it will not destroy the mind (manonasa).

Like the practice of breath-control. meditation on the forms of God, repetition of mantras, restriction on food, etc., are but aids for rendering the mind quiescent.

Through meditation on the forms of God and through repetition of mantras, the mind becomes one-pointed.  The mind will always be wandering. Just as when a chain is given to an elephant to hold in its trunk it will go along grasping the chain and nothing else, so also when the mind is occupied with a name or form it will grasp that alone. When the mind expands in the form of countless thoughts, each thought becomes weak; but as thoughts get resolved the mind becomes one-pointed and strong; for such a mind Self-inquiry will become easy. Of all the restrictive rules, that relating to the taking of sattvic food in moderate quantities is the best; by observing this rule, the sattvic quality of mind will increase, and that will be helpful to Self-inquiry.

13. The residual impressions (thoughts) of objects appear wending like the waves of an ocean. When will all of them get destroyed?

R.M. As the meditation on the Self rises higher and higher, the thoughts will get destroyed.

14. Is it possible for the residual impressions of objects that come from beginningless time, as it were, to be resolved, and for one to remain as the pure Self?

R.M. Without yielding to the doubt “Is it possible, or not?”, one should persistently hold on to the meditation on the Self. Even if one be a great sinner, one should not worry and weep “O! I am a sinner, how can I be saved?”; one should completely renounce the thought “I am a sinner”; and concentrate keenly on meditation on the Self; then, one would surely succeed. There are not two minds – one good and the other evil; the mind is only one. It is the residual impressions that are of two kinds – auspicious and inauspicious. When the mind is under the influence of auspicious impressions it is called good; and when it is under the influence of inauspicious impressions it is regarded as evil.

The mind should not be allowed to wander towards worldly objects and what concerns other people. However bad other people may be, one should bear no hatred for them. Both desire and hatred should be eschewed. All that one gives to others one gives to one’s self. If this truth is understood who will not give to others? When one’s self arises all arises; when one’s self becomes quiescent all becomes quiescent. To the extent we behave with humility, to that extent there will result good. If the mind is rendered quiescent, one may live anywhere.

15. How long should inquiry be practised?

R.M. As long as there are impressions of objects in the mind, so long the inquiry “Who am I?” is required. As thoughts arise they should be destroyed then and there in the very place of their origin, through inquiry. If one resorts to contemplation of the Self unintermittently, until the Self is gained, that alone would do. As long as there are enemies within the fortress, they will continue to sally forth; if they are destroyed as they emerge, the fortress will fall into our hands.

-Ramana Maharshi

From Who Am I?

Without any Breaks – Annamalai Swami

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

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

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

-Annamalai Swami

From Living by the Words of Bhagavan, p. 284

Hence, You Can be the Cause of Your Bliss – Osho

We very often feel that we create our own suffering. In spite of this, why do we continue creating them? And when and how does one stop creating one’s own suffering?

The first thing, and very basic to be understood, is that whenever you say, We very often feel that we create our own suffering, this is not the case. You never really feel that you are the creator of your own suffering. You may think so, because you have been taught so; because for centuries and centuries teachers have been teaching that you are the creator of your own suffering and no one else is responsible.

You have heard these things; you have read these things. They have become your blood and bone, they have become your unconscious conditionings, so sometimes you repeat like a parrot we create our own suffering. But this is not your feeling, this is not your realization, because if you realize it, then the other thing is impossible. Then you cannot say, In spite of this, why do we continue creating them?

If you really feel, and if it is your own feeling that you are the creator of your own suffering, any moment you can stop – unless you want to create it, unless you enjoy it, unless you are a masochist. Then everything is okay, then there is no question. If you say, ‘I enjoy my suffering,’ then it is okay; you can go on creating it. But if you say, ‘I suffer and I want to go beyond it. I want to stop it completely – and I understand that I am the creator,’ then you are wrong. You don’t understand it. Socrates is reported to have said that knowledge is virtue. And there has been a long discussion for these two thousand years over whether Socrates is right or wrong – knowledge is virtue.

Socrates says that once you know something, you cannot do contrary to it. If you know that anger is suffering, you cannot be angry. This is what Socrates means – knowledge is virtue. You cannot say, ‘I know anger is bad; still, I move in it. What to do about it now?’ Socrates says that the first thing is wrong. You don’t know that anger is bad; that’s why you go on moving in it. If you know, you cannot move in it. How can you move against your own knowledge?

I know that if I put my hand in the fire it is going to be painful. If I know, I cannot put my hand in. But if somebody else has told me, if I have heard through the tradition, if I have read in the scriptures that fire burns, and I have not known fire, and I have not known any similar experience, only then can I put my hand into fire – and that too only once.

Can you conceive it? That you have put your hand into fire and you have been burned and you have suffered, and again you go and ask, ‘I know that fire burns, but in spite of it I go on putting my hand into the fire. What to do about it?’ Who will believe that you know? And what type of knowledge is this? If your own experience of suffering and burning cannot stop you, nothing is going to stop you. Now there is no possibility, because the last possibility has been missed. But no one can miss it; that is impossible.

Socrates is right, and all those who have known, they will agree with Socrates – that agreement has a very deep point in it. Once you know…. But remember – the knowledge must be yours. A borrowed knowledge won’t do; borrowed knowledge is useless. Unless it is your own experience, it is not going to change you. Others’ experiences are of no help.

You have heard that you are the creator of your own suffering, but this is just in the mind. It has not entered your being; it is not your own knowledge. So when you are discussing, you can discuss about it cerebrally, but when the actual phenomenon happens, you will forget, and you will behave in the way you know, not in the way others know.

When you are at ease, cool, collected, silently discussing anger, you can say it is poison, it is a disease, evil. But when someone makes you angry then a complete change occurs. Not it is not an intellectual discussion, now you are involved. And the moment you are involved, you become angry.

Later on again, retrospectively, when you again get cool, the memory will come back, your mind will again start functioning, and you will say, ‘That was wrong. It was not good of me to do that. I know anger is wrong.’

Who is this ‘I’? – just intellect, just the superficial mind. You don’t know – because when someone pushes you into anger, you throw this mind away. It is useful as far as discussion is concerned, but when a real situation arises, only the real knowledge will help. When there is no situation, you can go on. Even in a discussion the real situation can arise. The other can go on contradicting you so much that you become angry and then you will forget.

Real knowledge means that which has happened to you. You have not heard about it, not read about it, you have not collected information about it – it is your own experience. And then there is no question, because after that you cannot go against it. Not that you will have to make an effort not to go against it; simply you cannot go against it.

How can I? When I know this is a wall and I want to go out of this room, how can I try to pass through the wall? I know this is a wall, so I will search for the door. Only a blind man will try to go out through the wall. I have got eyes. I see what is a wall and what is a door. But if I try to enter the wall and tell you, ‘I know very well where the door is, and I know this to be a wall, but in spite of this, how can I stop myself from trying to enter the wall?’ then that means that as far as I am concerned that door looks false. Others have told me that it is the door, but as far as I am concerned, I know that door is false. And others have told me that this is a wall, but as far as I see, I see the door here in this wall, and that is why I try.

In this situation you have to make a clear-cut distinction between what you know and what you have gathered as knowledge. Don’t rely on information. From the greatest source – even if you collect from the greatest source – information is information. Even if a Buddha says it to you, it is not your own, and it is not going to help you in any way. But you can remain thinking that it is your knowledge, and this misunderstanding will waste your energy, time and life.

The basic thing is not to ask what to do so that suffering is not created. The basic thing is to know that you are the creator of your suffering. Next time whenever a real situation arises and you are in suffering, remember to find out whether you are the cause of it. And if you can find out that you are the cause of it, the suffering will disappear, and the same suffering will not appear again – impossible.

But don’t deceive yourself. You can – that’s why I say it. When you are suffering you can say, ‘Yes, I know I have created this suffering,’ but deep down you know that someone else has created it. Your wife has created it, your husband has created it, someone else has created it, and this is simply a consolation because you cannot do anything. You console yourself: ‘No one has created it, I have created it myself, and by and by I will stop it.’

But knowledge is instant transformation; there is no ‘by and by.’ If you understand that you have created it, it will drop immediately. And it is not going to come up again. If it comes again, it means the understanding has not gone deep.

So there is no need to find out what to do, and how to stop. The only need is to go deep and to find out who is really the cause of it. If others are the cause then it cannot be stopped, because you cannot change the whole world. If you are the cause, only then can it be stopped.

That’s why I insist that only religion can lead humanity towards non-suffering. Nothing else can lead, because everyone else believes that the suffering is caused by others; only religion says that suffering is caused by you. So religion makes you the master of your destiny. You are the cause of your suffering; hence you can be the cause of your bliss.

-Osho

From The Book of Secrets, Discourse #50, Q4

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

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

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

The Goose is Out!

The Goose is Out!

In 2010 a sannyasin wrote “The Final Call” which was “a call to arms” trying to galvanize support for a movement that would counter the organization of the Osho International Meditation Resort in Pune.

Below is an excerpt of the response that I wrote. It seems even more relevant today.

My understanding is that Osho’s entire work was to wake us up out of the dream. When I heard that Osho had said to Jayesh “To you I leave you my dream”, initially I am sure that I also felt some tinge of jealousy. ‘You leave it to Jayesh!’ But then it became clear. His work was to bring us out of the dream. End the dream forever. He never suggested that we chase dreams, make goals, live with some intentions. In-tensions can only come out of the past. Dreams can only be an effort to improve upon the past and yet they are still tied to the past. My understanding is that Osho was pointing us to that unknown space where there is no past operating; where action is taken without intent but with complete awareness. So yes, Jayesh can have the dream, I’m opting for the End of all Dreams.

You speak about the “failure” of Rajneeshpuram. Failure means that the goal was not realized. Do you know what or even ‘if’ Osho had a goal? There were many after the Ranch who also felt that it had failed. Everyone who thought that we were creating some kind of ‘utopia’ felt that it had failed. They had grabbed onto the dream of future where things were going to be better than they were now. They were victims of “becoming”. Osho’s whole effort was to take us out of becoming and into “BEING”. All of the activities of the ranch were just an excuse to have us gathered together in some great mysterious energy. And you proclaim “Rajneeshpuram failed”. It certainly did not fail for Swami Anand Maitreya;  It certainly did not fail for Ajit Saraswati; both of which reached their ultimate enlightenment within that Buddhafield and who knows how many more.  Although I cannot testify to the degree that Maitreya and Saraswati could, I can and will say, for me, Rajneeshpuram was not a failure.

My understanding is that Osho’s work was not about a religious movement, or social movement; but rather a movement out of the collective and into individual BEINGNESS, consciousness without a second, the one true ground.

Now you want to harness sannyasins unhappiness with how things are in Pune. Now you want to be a true politician and create a movement, garnering the discontent for your cause. I hope, for your sake, that you do not proceed down that path. With every step taken it becomes increasingly difficult for you to return home. I have watched a few tread that path.

If Osho had wanted to create an organization, a collective movement, I doubt very much that he would have left his dream to Jayesh. I admit that I too was disappointed that Pune was left into his hands. But now, especially now, his wisdom becomes clear. I don’t know if Jayesh has a religious bone in his body; so, who better to ensure that Pune does not become the next Rome. Do you really believe that Osho wanted to create a new Christianity? But now we can see the jostling for position that the early Christians must have experienced. Osho said that he was dissolving into his sannyasins. Individually each is moving into their own light. We do not need a movement. We do not need to centralize the spontaneous happenings that are occurring around the globe. It is not a movement – it is life spontaneously erupting. In fact, a movement is only a distraction from the inner investigation that each of us needs to complete. It is a way to avoid, “If only Jayesh was not in power then I would be Enlightened”. Yeah, you bet. We do not need to ‘belong’ to some greater group than our own individual consciousness, because that individual consciousness Is the greater group, it is the Totality. We will not find our own fulfillment out in some movement but in our own Beingness.

So, let us not get distracted with politics or social movements or religious organization. Let us each complete the work that has been assigned. Come home to our own inner being, then whatever activities that we engage in will be right. But first we must end the tyranny of our own minds and then we will not be interested in how many people approve or how many people disapprove of our actions.  Whatever psychic experiences we have experienced let them not distract us from finishing the task. Enlightenment is not a state that we come in and out of, Enlightenment is not an experience, it is not an object that we perceive. Enlightenment is Consciousness without an object.

Enlightenment is Love without an object. Enlightenment is who we BE. Our work is to become a light unto ourselves. Until we do, let our actions come out of the emerging Awareness that is awakening in each one of us individually. Whether photos of Osho are hanging in Pune or not, has nothing to do with our own BEINGNESS. Let us see that waking up out of the dream is the movement Osho left us.

The goose Is out!

In Love,

Prem Purushottama