The Very Awareness is Transformation – Osho

In the context of pleasure and pain, the desire for pleasurable things is called the sense of pleasure, and aversion to painful things is called the sense of pain. And because of what one does to gain pleasure and shun pain, one is called a doer.

Sound, touch, form, taste and smell – these five objects are causes of pleasure and pain. When the self, in pursuit of virtuous and sinful acts, identifies itself with the body, which it is not, then it is called the diseased being.

-Sarvasar Upanishad

Why this bondage with the body and bodies? What is the secret? How are we in it, and why do we continue to be in it? Why is it such a struggle to go beyond? If bliss is inwards, and outwardly we cannot achieve anything other than anguish, then why this absurdity of living outward and outward? Why not go inward? Who is preventing you?

You are the prisoner.

And you are the imprisoned.

No one else is involved in it – No one except you, yourself.

Then why not take the jump?

There must be something which hinders you, which prevents you, which becomes a barrier to you. What is that? This rishi says that the longing for pleasure, the fear of misery, and the fear of pain are the root causes – the longing for pleasure and the effort to avoid any pain, any suffering, any dukha. And the illusion is created because pleasure and pain, happiness and misery, are not two things, are not two opposites; they are two polarities of one phenomenon, two ends of one phenomenon.

They are joined and one. That’s why pleasure turns into misery; they are convertible. Anything that you feel as pleasurable this moment may become unpleasurable the next. So pleasure and pain are not qualities of a thing, because the thing remains the same. I love you and feel happy; you remain the same. And the next moment, I hate you and feel miserable. But happiness and misery are not qualities of you, you remain the same. They must belong to my mind, to my attitude; they must belong to me.

That’s why the same thing can be a source of deep happiness to one, and a deep source of misery to someone else. The same thing can be a source of happiness to you this moment, and the next moment a source of your very hell. Pleasure and pain, happiness and suffering are not qualities of things as we presume; they are not. They are your attitudes – they belong to you.

So try an experiment: You are feeling happy in some situation – then be in that situation and begin to feel unhappy. And soon, soon you will begin to feel unhappy – it depends on your choice. Your beloved is nearby; you are feeling happy – now begin to feel unhappy, and soon you will be able to create unhappiness. Begin to feel happy, and soon you will change the whole situation – it depends on you.

Once you know the secret, the whole clinging drops – with pleasure or with fear of pain, the whole clinging just drops. The moment you know you are the master – whether to feel happy or to feel miserable depends on you – you become free of all dependence on others. But one has to know, one has to experience.

Things are just neutral; they don’t give you anything. It is you who contributes the feeling – not the thing. Really, you determine the whole thing unconsciously; that is why there is clinging. Determine it consciously.

Try an experiment. You are feeling very pained, suffering, you are ill. Then accept the illness; don’t fight it, remain in it, be a companion to it – don’t try to escape. Accept it totally, be with it, and soon a moment comes when you explode into a new dimension. The illness may be there still, but now it belongs only to the body, not to you. It is just on the periphery somewhere, as if it belongs to someone else – you have transcended.

Once the consciousness begins to feel that there is no bondage from the outside, then the longing for pleasure drops, because it is your projection. Then the fear of suffering drops, because it is your projection. In a very subtle way you become the master, the converter. You can convert anything into anything, because it is only your choice, your decision, your mind. Whatsoever you put into things you can get back – it is really just an echo.

You fall in love with someone, and if I ask you why, you will say, “Because the face is beautiful, the person is beautiful.” But really the thing is quite the reverse. It is not that the person is beautiful and so you have fallen in love; rather, because you have fallen in love the person looks beautiful. Your falling in love is primary, and the second thing is just a projection, because the same person can become ugly the next day – he remains the same with the same face, but everything has changed. This happens so often but still we are unaware. You say, “I cannot live without you!” And soon a moment comes when you cannot live with him. Why? – because you have not taken things in the right order.

You fall in love – that means you begin to project; love is a hypnosis. Love is a very delicate state of mind in which you can project anything – anything! So the beloved is not really there outside, it is here inside. It is a projection, and the person is just a screen. And you have projected much, you have contributed much. The moment you withdraw your contribution, the person is just ordinary. There is no halo around, no aura; everything has just dropped. The person is just ordinary, even more ordinary than ordinary, because now, it is so without luster. Now dreams have dropped, and dreams were the thing the whole stuff was made of.

Remember this fact: It is your mind which begins to feel happy or miserable – it depends on you. And once you know the secret, you have become really the master. Now you know the alchemy; you are the alchemist now, you can change any base metal into the higher. Now, you have the secret to turn anything into gold – now you can convert. And once you begin to convert base metals into higher metals, nothing is higher and nothing base. Now you know it is just you and your projection – your mind is doing the whole trick.

But one has to do much to be aware of this fact; one has to go deep into the facticity, into the very phenomenon of desiring, of avoiding, of longing for this and trying to escape that – one has to go deep into it. And it is not a doctrine – whatsoever the rishi is saying is not a doctrine – it is not a conception really; it is the facticity. It is how the mechanism of the mind works; it is just a fact. It is not a philosophy; it is a science in the sense that it is how the mind works. You project first, then you begin to believe. Then any moment you can withdraw your projection and the idol is lost, the temple is destroyed, and there is nothing left. But again, you will do the same thing, and you will go on doing the same thing: projecting, then feeling miserable or happy, and never being aware that you are creating – that you are the creator.

Everyone is a magician – everyone is a magician, and everyone goes on doing tricks with himself. Then these tricks become habits, mechanical habits; you can repeat them ad infinitum. And we have repeated them ad infinitum – lives and lives and lives. We have been repeating them always.

Buddha and Mahavira both tried a very novel experiment with the human mind. Whenever someone would come to them, seeking, they would tell the seeker, “First, try to remember your past lives. First, go deep into past lives.” But the seeker would say, “There is no need. I am concerned with the future; I am concerned with how to know the truth, how to realize the divine, how to be liberated, how to get to nirvana. What is the need of going into past lives?”

And Buddha would say, Mahavira would say, “There is a deep need. Unless you know your past, you will never be able to see that you have been playing tricks with yourself, continually, repeatedly. In each life you have done the same. It is a repetition: the same love – the falling in love and then frustration; riches, and then the feeling of inner poverty; prestige and power, and yet the helplessness. And the same!”

But we forget. Every life we drop all memories and we forget, and we begin anew. Esoteric science says that this forgetfulness is intentional. It is intentional that you have forgotten your past lives, because you wanted to forget. Psychologists say that you forget all that you want to forget. Sometimes you say, “I know your name, but I wonder why I have forgotten it.” Really, you wanted to forget. You are playing tricks with yourself; you wanted to forget; you never wanted to remember the name – that’s why you have forgotten.

We go on forgetting things. For example: Everyone remembers childhood as the very heaven, but it has never been so. Ask any child – he is in a hell. He is trying to grown up rapidly, trying to be a young man soon, because he feels very helpless. Everyone is more powerful than him, and everyone is suppressing him; everyone is just trying to destroy him. Everyone is just ordering him to do this and that; everyone is trying to discipline him. He is not at all free, he is feeling he is in prison and trying to get away soon from all this – trying to be a grown-up. But when he is grown-up he says, “What bliss it was to be a child.”

And when he is old, he is remembering childhood, painting about it, making poetries about it, dreaming about it. What has happened? – the trick of the mind. He has forgotten all that was not good to remember; now, he remembers only the good things, and all else has been just dropped. Now he remembers the love; now he remembers the freedom from all responsibilities; now he remembers… it was never a fact!

Whatsoever he felt as total helplessness, now he feels as freedom from responsibility. Whatsoever he has really felt in the past as a very bothersome burden of the parents, now he feels as love. He has dropped all that was not good, not ego strengthening, not creating a beautiful image – he has dropped it all.

Bring that man into deep hypnosis and ask him, “How was your childhood?” And he will begin to say that it was just hell. Awake, out of hypnosis, he says, “It was a heaven; I am longing again and again to go back.” Put him into hypnosis, then ask, and he will say, “It was just hell. There was nothing in my childhood.”

Psychologists have come to know now that all the misery, all the diseases, all the schizophrenia, all the insanity that develops later in life, is just a by-product of your childhood. So how was it a heaven? They say all that happens later on is just a by-product of your childhood. In your childhood, seeds are put into you which will develop into insanities, into abnormal perversions.

But the poets have always been talking about the innocence of childhood, the beauty of it, the benediction, the blessedness.

Psychoanalysts know more, and better. Whenever someone is ill, they have to bring out this very seed that has been planted in childhood. Unless that seed is destroyed – that seed is traumatic – unless it is destroyed you can never be really well. So psychoanalysis goes on trying to make you free from your childhood and all its impressions, all that childhood has done with you. If you are free from it, only then you can grow positively; otherwise, positive growth is impossible.

Buddha and Mahavira will say, “First go deep” – and there are methods. There are methods which can bring you back all the memories of your past lives. And once you know and go back on this time track, once you know that you have done the same nonsense every time, and you have longed for the same things, and always received quite the opposite . . . This has been a wheel constantly turning and turning and turning, and always forgetting and forgetting, and doing the same thing again and again. If one becomes aware of it, the very awareness becomes transforming.

The very awareness is transformation.

It is an inner revolution.

But leave aside past lives; even this life is enough – if you can go back in this very life and can find out that whatsoever was happiness one day became misery the other, that whatsoever you longed for, when you achieved it, was totally frustrating…. One of the greatest miseries of human life is to get that which you long for. If you never get it you are still happy, happy in the hope, happy in the possibility. But when you get it, even hope is lost. Now there is no future – you have got it.

Every achievement is frustrating. They say, “Nothing succeeds like success.” But I say, “Nothing fails like success.”

Nothing fails like success.

The moment you succeed, you know nothing has been achieved. It was just a dream, and now you are disillusioned.

So go back in this life, even this life is enough; go back and feel. Really we always go to the future, never to the past; we always go for the tomorrow, never for the yesterday. Go back and feel, go back. You have lived with the same desires, with the same longing, with the same dreams. Now take account of your past – what have you achieved? What have you gained? Was any hope ever fulfilled, or has every hope just proved hopeless? – go back. Don’t always move into the future, because in the future you will be doing the same – repeating the past. Go back. Realize your whole past; feel what has been wrong with it and don’t continue that wrong again. Drop it. Drop it consciously because it has become a habit now, it has become a mechanical routine. Drop it consciously!

Don’t repeat the past in the future, and you will be a new man.

This is what I mean by sannyas, by renunciation – to be a new man. This is what I mean by “breaking with the past,” discontinuity with the past. Remember what you have done with yourself in the past, and then drop it! Don’t drop it in steps, because you can never drop anything in steps – drop it totally, suddenly. Only then there is a discontinuity; otherwise, if you drop it in steps, there is a continuity.

Drop it suddenly.

This is what is meant by sannyas: Dropping the past as useless for the future.

This is a reorientation of all your attitudes, a reorientation of your total consciousness. Once this reorientation is there, you begin a new journey, and that journey is inwards. Then you can pass all the five bodies and come to the one which is embodied, but is not a body itself.

Why does consciousness become so involved with the body – not only involved, but identified? Why do we begin to feel that we are the bodies? – not that we are in the bodies, but we are the bodies?

This is really a miracle, because the knower can never be the known; the observer, the source of consciousness, can never be identified with the object. This body we know as an object; this hand I know, I feel, as an object. I never feel . . . I Can never feel it as me. It is always something outside – an object. It hurts, I know; it doesn’t hurt, I know – but I remain the knower.

But why does it happen that the knower becomes the known? How? How does the subject become the object? It cannot become really – that is impossible; becoming is impossible. The subject can never become the object – but it appears, it appears that it has become the object. We have become the bodies, and we go on living as if we are bodies.

Vahinger, a western philosopher has written a very strange book. The book is called The Philosophy of “As-if.” Really, this is our whole lives. We behave as if we are bodies; we behave as if we are material. We behave always not as we are, but as if – the “as if” is always there. How does this happen? – this which is impossible – how does this impossibility happen? What is the key? What is the clue?

The clue is very simple. The logic in the trick is very simple. You begin to be identified with anything which is pleasurable, because if you feel identified with the pleasure, you can feel more pleasure. If you do not feel identified with pleasure, then you cannot feel the pleasure at all, really. So the lover begins to feel identified with the beloved, the friend with the friend, the father with his son, the mother with her son; they begin to feel identified. The mother feels as if she is living in the son, and that if the son succeeds, the mother succeeds. If the son achieves, the father achieves. Then the son becomes just an extended part of the father’s ego.

With whatsoever we feel as pleasure, we begin to be identified. The moment the son becomes rebellious or becomes a criminal, the father tries to destroy the identification. He says, “Now, no more. You don’t belong to me at all.” Why? Why does the son belong at all?

I have a friend – he is an old man, an old politician, with many ambitions unfulfilled, obviously. A politician can never feel fulfilled, mm? That is intrinsically impossible. He is now seventy-five. His son died; he was only forty, but he was a minister in a state.

The son was a minister; this old man could never be a minister; he had tried in every way. And now he says, “There were many chances but I just escaped; I never wanted to be in any post.” He had tried everything possible, but now he says that he is beyond. But his son was a minister . . . he had two sons – one was just ordinary; the second was extraordinary. The old man has never felt identified with the first son – never. His identity was with the second one, who was a minister. Then the second son died, and this old man began to feel that he could not live anymore.

He came to me and asked, “What to do? I think of committing suicide, I cannot live anymore. My son has died; my young son has died, and I am old and I am still . . . It is not good – the father should die first.”

I asked him, “Had your son been a criminal, bad, evil, unsuccessful, would you have felt the same?” He pondered over it and said, “No.” Then I told him, “It is not the death of the son which has become so significant to you, really – it is your death, your ambition’s death.”

I asked him, “If your other son dies, will you commit suicide?” He said, “I have never loved him at all. He is just ordinary.” He has loved his ambition, not the son. The other son is as much a son, but there has been no communication between the two, never. They have not even talked. He said, “No, if he had not been up to my conceptions I would not have felt like this.”

The ego begins to be identified with something which is pleasurable. And this is the logic of our minds, the logic of this whole illusion, that we feel that our body is the source of pleasure. Of course, there are pains and there are sufferings, but we always transfer pains and sufferings to others. Suffering is always created by someone else, mm?

Jean-Paul Sartre has said – and said a very beautiful thing, but of course absolutely nonsense. He has said, “The other is hell.” The other is hell, always the other is hell. Oneself? – it is heaven, the very heaven. The other is the hell – this is the division, the bifurcation.

We continue to be identified with the body because we feel this is the source of pleasure. Whenever someone else’s body becomes the source of pleasure, we begin to be identified with that also. But always, pain comes from someone else; suffering comes from someone else. With this trick, this deep involvement in identification becomes possible.

The truth, the fact, is quite different: the body is both or neither. Either it is both the source of pain and pleasure . . . Remember this; it is both, because it cannot be one or the other. Pleasure and pain are one. Your body is the source of both. If you can feel this and realize this, then they both negate each other; the pain and the pleasure both negate each other and the body becomes neutral. Or, feel that pleasure and pain both come from outside, both are devices. They both come from outside; don’t divide, take them as a whole. Then also there is no identification with the body; the body is neutral.

And if the body is neutral, this rishi says you become a soul; otherwise, you are a conditioned soul. And this conditioned soul is the bondage; this conditioning is the bondage. And the rishi says this is the only disease, the spiritual disease: to be conditioned so much, identified so much with the body that one begins to feel as if one is the body.

This “as if” must be broken.

But it begins to be difficult. One feels to break it, but it looks impossible, because we have investments in it. We can break it if someone can make us confident that “if you break this body consciousness, you will be very happy and blissful” – then we can break it. But again, the old fallacy goes on, the old longing goes on. So I am not saying that if you want happiness, then break this conditioning and identification with the body, because you cannot break it. Rather, be aware of the fact that happiness or misery both will always remain side by side; you cannot leave one and choose the other. That is not possible. They are just like negative and positive poles of electricity; they are two parts of one phenomenon.

So be aware of this, that they are two parts of one phenomenon. Then you can just drop them without any further longing.

You cannot drop anything if there is a desire to gain something else; then that desire is again desire for happiness, pleasure. Be aware of the fact that both are one; pleasure and pain are one. Your interpretation differs, but the thing is always the same. This awareness of the fact becomes the dropping, the turning. And the soul, for the first time, realizes that it has never been identified with any object at all; it is the subjectivity.

Kierkegaard has said, “To know the subjectivity as the subjectivity is the realization. To know the subjectivity as an object is the bondage.”

-Osho

From That Art Thou, Discourse #8

Copyright © OSHO International Foundation

The Very Awareness is Transformation is from the morning talk, That Moment Becomes the Door to the Divine is from the evening talk of the same day.

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.

All Methods are Postponements – Osho

If the divine is right here and now, then what prevents us from seeing Him? Why do we cling to our dream life, even though it has become a misery for us? 

No, it has not become a misery for you yet; otherwise you could not cling to it. No one can cling to misery. You still have hopes; you have not yet become totally hopeless. Even in your misery you are hoping. You are thinking that today is misery but tomorrow the doors of paradise will open, and this misery is just a means to reach that paradise tomorrow. Unless the tomorrow dies completely, unless the tomorrow drops completely, unless you become totally hopeless, no hope… only then will you see what misery is there where you are living. And once you become aware of the misery that you are living, you will drop it – there will be no need for me to tell you.

Somebody came to Buddha and asked him, “You go on saying that life is suffering, dukkha; you go on saying that the house is on fire, and I realize that this is so, but how should we come out of that house which is on fire?”

Buddha said, “You are not seeing that the house is on fire. If the house is on fire you will not come to ask me, you will simply jump out of that house.” You won’t go to find a master to learn techniques; you won’t consult The Bible and Koran to find out how to get out of the house which is on fire. When the house is on fire, you will leave your Koran and Bible inside, and you will jump out. And even if a Buddha is sitting there, you will remember only when you are out of the house that Buddha has been left inside; the master has been left inside. When you realize the house is on fire, you simply jump out of it; there is no method.

All methods are postponements. You are in search of a method so that you can postpone, because a method will need time, so you can say to yourself, “How can I jump right now? It will take three years, six years, lives, to practice. It is such a difficult thing, so I will first practice how to jump, and then I will jump. But unless I practice, I cannot jump.”

And you have been doing this practice, this rehearsal, for many lives. You are not here for the first time to ask me – you have asked many times. The same questions you have been asking in every life, but you never do anything, because Buddha may be saying that the house is on fire, but you look… it is a palace, nothing is on fire. Just out of consideration for Buddha you don’t deny him. Otherwise you know he is crazy; the house is not on fire. Or he may be talking in symbols; he may be meaning something else. Or he is such a great man that you cannot understand what he is saying, so just out of respect you don’t deny him, you say yes. Your yes doesn’t mean any more than your no. Your yes, your no are meaningless.

I have heard that Mulla Nasruddin was in love with a woman, but very worried, depressed, always sad, so one friend asked, “What is the matter?”

He said, “Everything is finished, and I am contemplating suicide.”

The friend said, “But you have been contemplating so long. Tell me what the matter is – maybe I can help you.”

Nasruddin said, “I asked the woman to get married to me.”

The friend said, “Yes, no need to say anything more, I have understood. She must have said no. But you are a fool. Don’t believe it when a woman says no; she always means yes.”

Nasruddin said, “I know that wisdom, and if she had said no, then there would have been no problem. But when I proposed she said, ‘Rats.’ So now what to understand? She said, ‘Rats’; she never said no. Had she said no, then yes could be understood.”

Everybody’s mind is just like that woman. When you say no, the yes is hidden behind it. If somebody has slightly penetrating eyes, he can see your yes hidden behind the no. When you say yes it is just skin-deep, the no is hidden behind. And your yes can be turned into no without any effort. Your no can be turned into yes without much effort. Your yes and no are only different in degrees, not in quality. They can be changed, they continuously go on changing.

Even a small child knows this. The father says, “No, you are not going to the movie today.” But even a small child knows that yes is hidden behind it. He starts a tantrum, he starts crying, and within minutes the father says, “Go, go! Go away from here.” The child knows the yes is hidden behind the no. It can be brought out immediately, a little effort is needed. And no child believes in your yes or no because you can change so easily; no child trusts you. But this is how the human mind is.

So the first thing: you are not in misery. Buddha has said so, I may be saying so, but you know that you are not in misery. You go on feeling, hoping, that tomorrow something is going to happen. And tomorrow is the drug; through the tomorrow you intoxicate yourself, and then the day which is present, today, you can suffer it. It is not much, only a question of a few hours and then the tomorrow will be there; it is coming nearer and nearer. Because of the misery on this earth, we conceive of heaven as somewhere in the other life; that heaven is our tomorrow extended. Just to carry on anyhow this misery that is around us, we look somewhere ahead. We never look right now, here.

You are not in misery. I may be saying so; you go on believing that happiness is just near, you are just on the verge of it. The goal is so near, so why leave? Just continue a little more, be patient. If you realize that you are in misery, then there is no need to ask how to drop it. Then masters will be needed to teach you how to cling to it, and even then you will not listen to them. 

Once you know that your life is misery, even a buddha cannot persuade you to cling to it. But the penetration is not there. It is not your realization. This knowing is not your knowledge; this wisdom has not been achieved through your own efforts. It is borrowed, it is cheap. You have heard that life is misery, but you have not realized it. And you say, “Why do we go on clinging to this dream life?” It is not a dream life to you; it is real. When you see a dream the dream is real. Somebody who has awakened from sleep may go on saying that whatsoever you are seeing is just a dream, but the person who is dreaming, he is dreaming a reality, not a dream. In a dream, howsoever absurd, you cannot feel it as a dream. You believe in it, because once you feel it is a dream the dream disappears. The dream cannot remain there, your cooperation is withdrawn. You can cooperate only with reality, not with dreams; and if you cooperate dreams become reality – it is through your cooperation.

In the night, deep in sleep, you dream that you have become a king. You may be a beggar, or vice versa: you may be a king and you dream that you have become a beggar. But in that dream you are so identified you cannot think that it could be a dream. If you can think that it could be a dream, the dream will stop immediately. It will be broken; you will come out of it.

Try this. Try this with ordinary dreams. While going to sleep at night, every day just go on thinking only one thought: “When I dream, I must remember that this is a dream.” It will take many months for this thought to drop down into the unconscious, but it will reach there. After three weeks to three months it will reach if you persist, if you don’t forget. Every night while falling into sleep, you go on thinking that when a dream starts you will immediately recognize that it is a dream. After three weeks to three months this will happen; suddenly one day you will start dreaming and you will have the realization, “This is a dream.” Immediately the dream will disappear and your eyes will be open.

If you realize in dream that it is a dream the dream is broken, the dream cannot exist. It exists through your cooperation, your identification is needed. If you are committed to it, if you get involved in it, only then can it continue. And the same happens with the greater dream which is life. When you realize this is a dream, immediately you have become a buddha, you are enlightened. But this enlightenment cannot happen to you by others’ knowing, others’ wisdom.

Buddha may go on calling to you that this is a dream you are living, but you will only feel that this man is a disturbance, a constant nuisance, he is disturbing your life. That’s why we kill such persons. Socrates – we poisoned him because he was a great disturber. Jesus – we crucified him because he was a nuisance. Everybody is dreaming such beautiful dreams, and these persons unnecessarily, and without being invited, go on disturbing people and saying to them, “Wake up! You are dreaming. This is a dream.” And the man may have been dreaming such a beautiful thing that he could throw away all life for that dream.

Now psychologists say that for the ordinary mind, for the normal mind, dreaming is a must. If you cannot dream, if you are not allowed to dream, you will go mad. Previously it was thought that sleep is a necessity, now the new research says a totally different thing. The new research says that sleep is not a must; it is not sleep which gives you rest, it is dreaming which gives you rest. And if you are allowed to dream you will remain happy, if you are not allowed to dream you will go insane.

The whole night there is a rhythm: sleep period, then dream period, then sleep period, then dream period, of almost the same duration. If you sleep for eight hours, at least for four hours you are dreaming: forty minutes dreaming, then forty minutes sleep, then forty minutes dream, then forty minutes sleep – just like day and night, a rhythm.

They have tried many experiments, because now it can be known from the outside whether you are dreaming or not. Not many devices are needed. When a person is sleeping you can simply go on looking at his eyes. When he dreams the eyes move fast. He is looking at the dream, so the eyes move fast. When he is fast asleep the eyes stop and become dead. So just sitting by a person who is asleep, you can note down when he is dreaming and when he is asleep.

They have tried to disturb persons while they are asleep, in their sleep periods of forty minutes. When they are dreaming they don’t disturb them; when they start sleeping they disturb them. Many nights you can disturb a person while he is asleep but allow the dream period, and he will be happy and okay, no problem; he will not feel tired in the morning. But do otherwise: when he is asleep let him sleep; when he starts dreaming wake him. If continuously the whole night, for only three nights, you don’t allow a person to dream, then he will go insane. Why? It is so much needed. Your ordinary mind feeds on dreams, and if a person is not allowed for three days to dream he will start dreaming while awake. It is such a great need. He will be awake, sitting in his chair, and dreaming. He will have to fulfill the quota, in the day he will have to dream.

And if you insist for many weeks, if for at least three weeks a person is not allowed to dream, he will become hallucinatory. He will be awake and talking to a man who is not present. He will become just like madmen. Now psychologists say that these madmen whom we have pushed into madhouses may be simply persons who have been starved as far as dream food is concerned. They need more dreams to be readjusted to normal life. What is the problem? Why are dreams needed so much? Why can’t you live without dreams? Because your life is so miserable that only through dreams can you exist. If you come to know life as it is, in its nudity, without any dreams, you will commit suicide.

Albert Camus has written that the only philosophical problem is whether to commit suicide or not, and that is the big problem. If you come to realize that the whole life is just nonsense…. What are you doing? What is happening? Nothing is happening, and you continue in suffering. If you are reasonable, you will start thinking of committing suicide.

Dreams help you to not commit suicide. They help you to create worlds of your own in which you can be happy, in which you can enjoy, in which you can become emperors, in which you can become conquerors, in which you can fly and reach the planets, in which you can do anything. You are free only in your dreams. The whole life is a slavery, only in your dreams can you destroy the whole world and create a new one.

You can have a beautiful woman in your dreams, a beautiful man. Life is not so beautiful. And howsoever beautiful a woman, you come closer and the flowers disappear and only thorns are left. Howsoever beautiful a man, a person, if you are far away the beauty is there, but the closer you come, the more the beauty starts evaporating. Sartre says, “Hell is other people – the other is the hell.” The closer you come to the other, the more a hell is created. Only in your dreams can you be in paradise.

So don’t say that you know that your life is suffering and dreamlike – it is real to you. To you I say it is real; to a buddha it is unreal. But you are not a buddha yet, so remain with your reality, and remain with your real mind. Don’t move with borrowed things, because once you move on borrowed things you will never come to the reality again.

“If the divine is right here and now, then what prevents us from seeing him? Why do we cling to our dream life even though it has become a misery for us?”

Think again. Contemplate on it. If it is a misery for you – for you I insist again and again, not for me – if it is a misery for you, don’t do anything. Remain with the fact that your life has become a misery to you, because if you start doing something about it you may again create hope in the tomorrow. Just remain with the fact. If it is hell, remain in hell, don’t do anything. Just remain alert that this is hell. And if you can be patient and alert and wait, just through waiting the hell will disappear, it will fall down. It needs your cooperation. It is just like dreams.

That’s why Shankara and Buddha say your life is a dream life – because it can be just dropped like dreams. If you become alert a dream disappears; if you become alert of your misery, the misery disappears. You cling to it because you think it is not misery, or some happiness is hidden somewhere in it. It may be misery outwardly, but a deep treasure is hidden behind it, so you have to cling to it for that treasure. Your life is misery – but not for you. Realize its misery, it falls down. The very truth transforms you. And the moment misery falls the divine is revealed. To a miserable mind the divine cannot be revealed. To a celebrating mind the divine is revealed.

Remember, only to a celebrating mind, to a mind which is happy, blissful, enjoying moment to moment, ecstatic, is the divine revealed. To a miserable mind the divine cannot be revealed, because a miserable mind is closed. The divine is here and now, but you are not here and now. If you are also here and now then the divine will be revealed to you. The whole of my effort is to bring you here and now. This very moment, if you can be here, then nothing is hidden.

-Osho

From Vedanta: Seven Steps to Samadhi, Discourse #3

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

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