Sudden Enlightenment and its Obstacles – Osho

You said that either one sees the world or the Brahman and that no gradually increasing perception of the Brahman is possible. But in experience we feel that as we become aware and more silent and still, the feeling of the divine presence becomes gradually clearer and clearer. What is this gradual growth and clarity if the authentic experience is never gradual, but sudden?

This has been a very ancient problem: “Is enlightenment sudden or gradual?” Many things have to be understood. There has been a tradition which says that enlightenment is gradual and that everything can be divided into degrees, everything can be divided into steps – that like anything else, knowledge can also be divided; you can become more and more wise, you can become more and more enlightened. This has been widely accepted because the human mind cannot conceive of anything sudden. Mind wants to divide, analyze. Mind is a divider. Degrees can be understood by the mind, but suddenness is non – mental-beyond mind.

If I say to you that you are ignorant and that gradually you will become wise, this is comprehensible, you can comprehend it. If I say to you, “No, there is no gradual growth. Either you are ignorant or you become enlightened, there is a sudden jump,” then the question arises of how to become enlightened. If there were no gradualness, there could be no progress. If there were no degree of growth, no degrees, then you could not make progress, you could not proceed. From where to begin? In a sudden explosion, the beginning and the end are both the same. There is no gap between the beginning and the end, so from where to begin? The beginning is the end. It becomes a puzzle for the mind, it becomes a koan. But sudden enlightenment seems to be impossible. It is not that it is impossible, but that the mind cannot conceive of it. And, remember, how can the mind conceive of enlightenment? It cannot. It has been widely accepted that this inner explosion is also gradual growth. Even many enlightened persons have conceded that to your minds, and they have said, “Yes, there is a gradual growth.”

It is not that there is. They have said it and accepted your attitude, your way of perception. They have been in a deep compassion for you. They know that if you start thinking that it is gradual, the start will be good, but there will be no gradual growth. But if you start, if you go on seeking it, someday the sudden thing will happen to you. And if it is said that enlightenment is only sudden and no gradual growth is possible, you are not even going to start and it will never happen. Many enlightened persons have said that enlightenment is a gradual thing just to help you, just to persuade you to start.

Something is possible through gradual process, but not enlightenment – not enlightenment, something else. And that something else becomes helpful. For example, if you are making water to evaporate it, heating it, evaporation will come suddenly. At a certain point, at a hundred degrees, evaporation will happen – suddenly! There will be no gradual growth between water and vapor. You cannot divide; you cannot say that this water is a little vapor and a little water. Either it is water or it is all vapor. Suddenly the water jumps into the state of vapor. There is a jump – not gradual growth. But by heating you are gradually giving heat to the water. You are helping it to reach the hundred degree point, the evaporating point. This is a natural growth. Up to the evaporating point, the water will grow in the sense of being more and more hot. Then evaporation will happen suddenly.

So there have been masters who were wise, compassionate, who used the language of the human mind which you can understand, telling you, “Yes, there is a gradual growth.” It gives you courage and confidence and hope, and a possibility that it can happen to you also. You cannot attain in a sudden explosion, but by and by, step by step, with your limitations, with your weaknesses, you can grow to it. It may take many lives, but still there is hope. You will just get heated by all your efforts.

The second thing to remember: even hot water is still water. So even if you become more clear in your mind, more pure in your perceptions, more moral, more centered, you are still man, not a buddha, not enlightened. You become more silent, more still, calmer. You feel a deep bliss, but still you are a man, and your feelings are really negative, not positive.

You feel calm because you are now less tense. You feel blissful because now you are clinging less to your miseries; you are not creating them. You feel collected. It is not that you have come to realize the one, but only because now you are less divided. Remember this: your growth is negative. You are just hot water. The possibility is there that at any moment you will come to the point where evaporation happens. When it happens, you will not feel calmness, you will not even feel blissful, you will not feel silent, because these attributes are relative to their opposites. When you are tense, you can feel silence. When you feel noise, you can feel stillness. When you are divided, fragmentary, you can feel oneness. When you are in suffering, anguish, you can feel bliss.

That is why Buddha was silent – because language cannot now express that which is beyond polarities. He cannot say, “Now I am filled with bliss,” because even this feeling that “Now I am filled with bliss” is possible only with a background of suffering and anguish. You can feel health only with a background of illness and disease; you can feel life only with a background of death. Buddha cannot say, “Now I am deathless,” because death has disappeared so completely that deathlessness cannot be felt.

If the misery has disappeared so completely, how can you feel blissful? If the noise and the anguish are so absolutely non-existent, how can you feel silence? All these experiences, feelings, are related to their opposites. Without their opposites they cannot be felt. If darkness disappears completely, how can you feel light? It is impossible.

Buddha cannot say, “I have become light!” He cannot say, “Now I am filled with light.” If he says such things, we will say he is not yet a buddha. He cannot utter such things. Darkness must be there if you want to feel light; death must be there if you want to feel deathlessness. You cannot avoid the opposite. It is a basic necessity for any experience to exist. So what is Buddha’s experience? Whatsoever we know, it is not that. It is neither negative nor positive, neither this nor that. And whatsoever can be expressed, it is not that.

That is why Lao Tzu insists so much that truth cannot be said, and the moment you say it you have falsified it. Already it is untrue. Truth cannot be said because of this: it cannot be divided into polar opposites, and language is meaningful only with polar opposites. Language becomes meaningless otherwise. Without the contrary, language loses meaning.

So there is a tradition which says that enlightenment is gradual, but that tradition is not really the truth. It is just a half-truth uttered in compassion for human minds. Enlightenment is sudden, and it cannot be otherwise. It is a jump! It is a discontinuity from your past! Try to understand: if something is gradual, the past goes on remaining in it. If something is gradual, then there is a continuity.

There is no gap. If from ignorance to knowledge there is gradual growth, the ignorance cannot completely disappear. It will remain, it will continue, because there has been no discontinuity, there has been no gap. So the ignorance may become more polished, the ignorance may become more knowledgeable. The ignorance may appear wise, but it is there. The more polished it is, then, of course, the more dangerous. The more knowledgeable it is, then the more cunning one is and the more capable of deceiving oneself.

Enlightenment and ignorance are absolutely separate, discontinuous. A jump is needed – a jump in which the past dissolves completely. The old is gone; it is no more, and the new has appeared which was never there before.

Buddha is reported to have said, “I am not that one who was seeking. The one who has appeared now never was before.” This looks absurd, illogical, but it is so. It is so! Buddha says, “I am not he who was seeking; I am not he who was desiring enlightenment; I am not he who was ignorant. The old man is dead completely. I am a new one. I never existed in that old man. There has been a gap. The old has died and the new is born.”

For the mind to conceive of this is difficult. How can you conceive of it? How can you conceive of a gap? Something must continue. How can something disappear completely and something new appear? It was absurd for logical minds, it was absurd for scientific minds, just two decades before. But now, for science, it is not absurd. Now they say that deep down in the atom electrons appear and disappear, and they take jumps. From one point the electron takes a jump to another; in between the two it is not. It appears at point A, then disappears and reappears at point B, and within the gap it is no more. It is not there. It becomes absolutely non-existent.

If this is so, it means that non-existence is also a sort of existence. It is difficult to conceive of, but it is so: non-existence is also a sort of existence. It is as if something moves from the visible to the invisible, as if something moves from form to formlessness.

When Gautam Siddharth, the old man who died in Gautam Buddha, was seeking, he was a visible form. When the enlightenment happened, that form completely dissolved into the formless. For a moment there was a gap; there was no one. Then from that formlessness a new form arose.

This was Gautam Buddha. Because the body continues in the same way, we think that there is a continuity, but the inner reality changes completely. Because the body continues in the same way, that is why we say “Gautam Buddha” – that “Gautam Siddharth has now become Gautam the awakened; he has become a buddha.” But Buddha himself says, “I am not he who was seeking. I am a totally different one.”

It is difficult for the mind to conceive of this – and for the mind many things are difficult, but they cannot be denied just because they are difficult for the mind. The mind has to yield to those impossibilities which are incomprehensible to it. Sex cannot yield to the mind; the mind has to yield to sex. This is one of the most basic inner facts – that enlightenment is a discontinuous phenomenon. The old simply disappears and the new is born.

There has been another tradition, a later tradition, of those who have been insisting all through history that Enlightenment is sudden – that it is not gradual. But those who belong to it are very few. They stick to the truth, but they are bound to be very few because no following can be created if sudden Enlightenment is the case. You simply cannot understand it, so how can you follow it? It is shocking to the logical structure and it seems absurd, impossible. But remember one thing: then you move into deeper realms. Whether of matter or of mind, you will have to encounter many things of which a superficial mind cannot conceive.

Tertullian, one of the greatest Christian mystics, has said, “I believe in God because God is the greatest absurdity. I believe in God because mind cannot believe in God.” It is impossible to believe in God; no proof, no argument, no logic can help the belief in God. Everything goes against him, against his existence, but Tertullian says, “That is why I believe – because only by believing in an absurdity can I move away from my mind.”

This is beautiful. If you want to move away from your mind, you will need something of which your mind cannot conceive. If your mind can conceive of it, it will absorb it into its own system, and then you cannot transcend your mind. That is why every religion has insisted on some point which is absurd. No religion can exist without some absurdity just as a foundation in it. From that absurdity you either turn back and say, “I cannot believe so I will go away.” Then you remain yourself – or you take a jump, you turn away from your mind. And unless your mind is killed the enlightenment cannot happen.

Your mind is the problem, your logic is the problem, your arguments are the problem.

They are on the surface. They look true, but they deceive. They are not true. For example, look how the mind’s structure functions. The mind divides everything in two, and nothing is divisible. Existence is indivisible; you cannot divide it – but mind goes on dividing it. It says that “this” is life and “this” is death. What is the actual fact? The actual fact is that both are the same. You are both alive and dying this very moment; you are doing both. Rather, you are both -death and life.

Mind divides. It says, “this” is death and “this” is life. Not only does it divide; it says that both are opposites, enemies, and that death is trying to destroy life. And it looks okay: death is “trying to destroy life.” But if you penetrate deeper, deeper than the mind, death is not trying to destroy life!

You cannot exist without death. Death is helping you to exist. It is every moment helping you to exist. If for a single moment death stops working, you will die.

Death is every moment throwing away many parts in you which have become non-functional. Many cells die; they are removed by death. When they are removed, new ones are born. You are growing: something is dying and something is being born continuously. Every moment there is death and life, and both are functioning. In language I have to call them both two. They are not two; they are two aspects of one phenomenon. Life and death are one; “life-death” is a process. But mind divides.

That division looks okay for us, but that division is false.

You say “this” is light and “that” is dark; you divide. But where does darkness start and where does light end? Can you demarcate them? You cannot demark them. Actually, whiteness and blackness are two poles of a long greyness, and that greyness is life. On one pole blackness appears and on another pole whiteness appears, but the reality is grey, and that grey contains both in itself. Mind divides and then everything looks clear-cut. Life is very confusing; that is why life is a mystery.

And because of this, mind cannot understand life. It is helpful to create clear-cut concepts. You can think easily, conveniently, but you miss the very reality of life. Life is a mystery, and mind demystifies everything. Then you have dead fragments, not the whole.

With the mind you will not be able to conceive of how enlightenment is sudden, how you will disappear and something new will be there which you had never known before. But don’t try to understand through mind. Rather, practice something which will make you more and more hot.

Rather, try to attain some fire which will make you more and more hot. And then one day suddenly you will know that the old has disappeared; the water is no more. This is a new phenomenon. You have evaporated, and everything has changed totally.

Water was always flowing downwards, and after evaporation the new phenomenon is rising upwards.

The whole law has changed. You have heard about one law, Newton’s law of gravity, which says that the earth attracts everything downwards. But the law of gravity is only one law. There is another law. You may not have heard about it because science has yet to uncover it, but yoga and tantra have known it for centuries. They call it levitation. Gravity is the pull downwards and levitation is the pull upwards.

The story of how the law of gravity was discovered is well known. Newton was sitting under a tree, under an apple tree, and then one apple fell down. Because of this he started thinking, and he felt that something is pulling the apple downwards. Tantra and yoga ask, “How did the apple reach upwards in the first place? How?” That must be explained first – how the apple reached the upward position, how the tree is growing upwards. The apple was not there; it was hidden in a seed, and then the apple traveled the whole journey. It reached the upward position and only then did it fall down. So gravity is a secondary law. Levitation was there first. Something was pulling the apple upwards. What is that?

In life we easily know gravity because we are all pulled downwards. The water flows downwards; it is under the law of gravity. When it evaporates, suddenly the law also evaporated. Now it is under levitation, it rises upwards.

Ignorance is under the law of gravity: you always move downwards, and whatsoever you do makes no difference. You have to move downwards. In every way you will have to move downwards, and struggle alone will not be of much help unless you enter a different law – the law of levitation. That is what samadhi is – the door for levitation. Once you evaporate, once you are no more water, everything changes. It is not that now you can control: there is no need to control, you simply cannot flow downwards now. As it was impossible before to rise upwards, now it is impossible to flow downwards.

It is not that a buddha tries to be non-violent; he cannot do otherwise. It is not that he tries to be loving; he cannot do otherwise. He has to be loving. That is not a choice, not an effort, not any cultivated virtue, it is simply that now this is the law: he rises upwards. Hate is under the law of gravity; love is under levitation.

This sudden transformation doesn’t mean that you are not to do anything and that you are simply to wait for the sudden transformation. Then it will never come. This is the puzzle. When I say – or someone else says – that enlightenment is sudden; we think that if it is sudden nothing can be done that we must simply wait. When it will happen, it will happen, so what can one do? If it is gradual you can do something.

But I say to you that it is not gradual, and yet you can do something. And you have to do something, but that something will not bring you enlightenment. That something will bring you near the phenomenon of enlightenment. That something will make you open for the phenomenon of enlightenment to happen. So enlightenment cannot be an outcome of your efforts; it is not. Through your efforts you simply become available for the higher law of levitation. Your availability will come through your effort, not enlightenment. You will become open, you will become non-resistant, you will become cooperative for the higher law to work. And once you are cooperative and non-resistant, the higher law starts functioning. Your efforts will yield you; your efforts will make you more receptive.

It is just like this: you are sitting in your room with closed doors. The sun is outside, but you are in darkness. You cannot do anything to bring the sun in, but if you simply open the doors your room becomes available. You cannot bring the sun in, but you can block it out. If you open your doors, the sun will enter, the waves will come; the light will come into the room.

You are not really bringing the light; you are simply removing the hindrance. The light comes by itself. Understand it deeply: you cannot do anything to reach enlightenment, but you are doing many things to hinder it – to hinder it from reaching to you. You are creating many barriers, so you can only do something negatively: you can throw the barriers; you can open the doors. The moment the doors are open, the rays will enter, the light will touch you and transform you.

All effort in this sense is to destroy the barriers, not to attain enlightenment. All effort is negative. It is just like medicine. The medicine cannot give you health; it can only destroy your diseases. Once the diseases are not there, health happens; you become available. If diseases are there, health cannot happen.

That is why medical science, Eastern or Western, has not yet been able to define what health is. They can define each disease exactly – they know thousands and thousands of diseases and they have defined them all – but they cannot define what health is. At the most they can say that when there is no disease you are healthy. But what is health? Something which goes beyond mind. It is something which is there: you can have it, you can feel it, but you cannot define it.

You have known health, but can you define it – what it is? The moment you try to define it you will have to bring disease in. You will have to talk something about disease, and you will have to say, “No-disease is health.” This is ridiculous. To define health you need disease? And disease has definite qualities. Health also has its own qualities, but they are not so definite because they are infinite. You can feel them; when health is there you know it is there. But what is it? Diseases can be treated, destroyed. Barriers are broken and the light enters. Similar is the phenomenon of enlightenment. It is a spiritual health. Mind is a spiritual disease, and meditation is nothing but medicine.

Buddha is said to have said, “I am a medicine man, a vaidya – a physician. I am not a teacher and I have not come to give you doctrines. I know a certain medicine which can cure your diseases. And don’t ask about health. Take the medicine, destroy the disease, and you will know what health is. Don’t ask about it.” Buddha says, “I am not a metaphysician, I am not a philosopher. I am not interested in what God is, in what soul is, in what kaivalya, aloneness, moksha, liberation, and nirvana is. I am not interested! I am simply interested in what disease is and in how it can be cured. I am a medicine man.” His approach is absolutely scientific. He has diagnosed human dilemma and disease. His approach is absolutely right.

Destroy the barriers. What are the barriers? Thinking is the basic barrier. When you think, a barrier of thoughts is created. Between you and the reality a wall of thoughts is created, and thoughts are more dense than any stone wall can be. And then there are many layers of thought. You cannot penetrate through them and see what the real is. You go on thinking about what the real is and you go on imagining what the real is, and the real is here and now waiting for you. If you become available to it, it will happen to you. You go on thinking about what the real is, but how can you think if you don’t know?

You cannot think about something which you don’t know; you can only think about something which you already know. Thinking is repetitious, tautological; it never reaches to anything new and unknown. Through thinking you never touch the unknown; you only touch the known, and it is meaningless because you already know it. You can go on feeling it again and again; you may enjoy the feeling, but nothing new comes out of it.

Stop thinking. Dissolve thinking, and the barrier is broken. Then your doors are open and the light can enter. And once the light enters, you know that the old is no more. You know now that that which you are is absolutely the new. It never was before; you had never known it; but you may even say that this is the “ancient-most” – it was there always, not known to you.

You can use both expressions; they mean the same. You can call it the “ancient-most” – the brahman who has always been there, and you can say that you were missing it continuously.

Or you can say that this is the newest – that which has happened only now and never was before.

That too is right because for you this is the new. If you want to speak about the truth, you will have to use paradoxical expressions. The Upanishads say, “This is the new and this is the old. This is the most ancient and this is the newest. It is the far and the near both.” But then language becomes paradoxical, contradictory.

And you ask me, “What is this gradual growth and clarity if the authentic experience is never gradual, but sudden?” This clarity is of the mind; this clarity is of a lessening of disease; this clarity is of the falling of barriers. If one barrier falls you are less burdened, your eyes are less clouded. If another barrier falls you are still more unburdened, your eyes become still more clear. But this clarity is not of enlightenment; this clarity is only of a lessening disease, not of health. When all barriers disappear, with those barriers your mind also disappears.

Then you cannot say, “Now my mind is clear, it is no more.” Then you simply say, “Now there is no mind.” When there is no mind, then the clarity is of enlightenment. Then the clarity is of enlightenment! That is absolutely different. Then another dimension has opened. But you will have to pass through clarities of mind. Remember always that no matter how clear your mind becomes; it is still a barrier.

No matter how transparent your mind becomes, even if it becomes a transparent glass and you can look to the other side, still it is a barrier and you will have to break it completely. So sometimes it happens that when one is meditating one becomes more and more clear, more sane, more still; silence is felt. Then one clings to meditation and thinks that everything is achieved. Great masters have always been emphasizing that a day comes when you have to throw your meditation also.

I will tell you one story – one Zen story. Bokuju was meditating – meditating very deeply, meditating with his whole heart. His master would come every day, and he would just laugh and go back.

Bokuju became annoyed. The master would not say anything, he would just come and look at him, laugh and go away. And Bokuju was feeling very good in meditation. His meditation was deepening, and he needed someone to appreciate him. He was waiting for the master to pat him and say, “Good, Bokuju. You did well.” But the master just laughed. The laughter felt insulting – as if Bokuju was not progressing, and he was progressing. As he progressed more, the laughter grew more and more insulting. It was impossible to tolerate it now.

One day the master came, and Bokuju was feeling absolutely silent as far as mind can go; there was no noise within, no thought. The mind was absolutely transparent; no barrier was felt. He was filled with a subtle deep happiness, joy was bubbling all over, he was in ecstasy. Thus, he thought, “Now my master will not laugh. Now the moment has come, and he is going to tell me, ‘Now Bokuju, you have become enlightened.’”

That day the master came: the master came with a brick in his hand, and he started rubbing that brick on the rock on which Bokuju was sitting. He was so silent, and the rubbing of the brick created noise. He became annoyed. At last he couldn’t tolerate it, so he opened his eyes and asked his master, “What are you doing?”

The master said, “I am trying to make this brick a mirror, and by continuously rubbing it I hope that someday this brick will become a mirror.”

Bokuju said, “You are behaving stupidly. This stone, this brick, is not going to become a mirror. No matter how much you rub it, it is not going to become a mirror.”

The master laughed and said, “Then what are you doing? This mind can never become enlightened, and you go on rubbing and rubbing it. You are polishing it, and you are feeling so good that when I laugh you feel annoyed.” And suddenly, as the master threw his brick, Bokuju became aware. When the master threw his brick, suddenly he felt that the master was right, and the mind broke. Then from that day on there was no mind and no meditation. He became enlightened.

The master said to him, “Now you can move anywhere. Go, and teach others also. First teach them meditation; then teach them non-meditation. First teach them how to make the mind clear, because only a very clear mind can understand that now even this clear mind is a barrier. Only a deeply meditative mind can understand that now even meditation has to be thrown.

You cannot understand it right now. Krishnamurti goes on saying that there is no need of any meditation, and he is right. But he is talking to wrong persons. He is right; there is no need for any meditation, but he is wrong because of to whom he is saying this. Those who cannot even understand what meditation is, how can they understand that there is no need for any meditation?

This is going to be harmful for them because they will cling to this idea. They will feel that this idea is very good, there is no need of meditation, so “We are already enlightened.”

Listening to Krishnamurti, many feel that now there is no need of meditation and that those who are meditating are foolish. They may waste their whole life because of this thought, and this thought is right. There comes a point when meditation has to be thrown; there comes a point when meditation becomes a barrier. But wait for this point to come. You cannot throw something which you don’t have. Krishnamurti says, “No need of meditation; don’t meditate.” But you have never meditated, so how can you say, “Don’t meditate”?

A rich man can renounce his riches, not a poor man. To renounce you need something to renounce in the first place. If you meditate, you can renounce it one day – and that is the last renunciation, and that is the greatest. Wealth can he renounced; it is easy. Family can be renounced; it is not difficult.

The whole world can be renounced because everything is outer and outer and outer. The last thing is meditation, the innermost wealth. And when you renounce it, you have renounced yourself. Then no self remains – not even the meditating self, the great meditator. Even that image is broken. You have fallen into nothingness. Only in this nothingness, the discontinuity. The old has disappeared and the new has happened. You become available through meditation.

Whatsoever is felt through meditation, don’t think that it is enlightenment. These are just glimpses of a lessening disease, of a dispersing disease. You feel good. The disease is less, so you feel relatively healthy. Real health is not yet there, but you are more healthy than before and it is good to be more healthy than before.

-Osho

From The Book of Secrets, Discourse #40, 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.

The Cloud Which Showers Virtue – Osho

One who is able to maintain a constant state of desirelessness, even towards the most exalted states of enlightenment, and is able to exercise the highest kind of discrimination, enters the state known as ‘the cloud which showers virtue’.

One who is able to maintain a constant state of desirelessness even towards the most exalted states of enlightenment

Patanjali calls it paravairagya: the ultimate renunciation. You have renounced the world: you have renounced greed, you have renounced money, you have renounced power; you have renounced everything of the outside. You have even renounced your body, you have even renounced your mind, but the last renunciation is the kaivalya renunciation of kaivalya itself, of moksha itself, of nirvana itself. Now you renounce even the idea of liberation, because that too is a desire. And desire, whatsoever its object, is the same. You desire money, I desire moksha. Of course, my object is better than your object, but still my desire is the same as yours. Desire says, “I am not content as I am. More money is needed; then I will be contented. More liberation is needed; then I will be contented.” The quality of desire is the same; the problem of desire is the same. The problem is that the future is needed: “As I am, it is not enough; something more is needed. Whatsoever has happened to me is not enough. Something still has to happen to me; only then can I be happy.” This is the nature of desire: you need more money, somebody needs a bigger house, somebody thinks of more power, politics, somebody thinks of a better wife or a better husband, somebody thinks of more education, more knowledge, somebody thinks of more miraculous powers, but it makes no difference. Desire is desire, and desirelessness is needed.

Now the paradox: if you are absolutely desireless – and in absolute desirelessness, the desire of moksha is included – a moment comes when you don’t desire even moksha, you don’t desire even God. You simply don’t desire; you are, and there is no desire. This is the state of desirelessness. Moksha happens in this state. Moksha cannot be desired, by its very nature, because it comes only in desirelessness. Liberation cannot be desired. It cannot become a motive because it happens only when all motives have disappeared. You cannot make God an object of your desire because the desiring mind remains ungodly. The desiring mind remains unholy; the desiring mind remains worldly. When there is no desire, not even the desire for God, suddenly He has always been there. Your eyes open and you recognize Him.

Desires function as barriers. And the last desire, the most subtle desire, is the desire to be liberated. The last, subtle desire is the desire to be desireless. 

One who is able to maintain a constant state of desirelessness, even towards the most exalted states of enlightenment, and is able to exercise the highest kind of discrimination…

Of course, the ultimate in discrimination will be needed. You will have to be aware – so much so that this very, very deep desire of becoming free of all misery, of becoming free of all bondage, even this desire does not arise. Your awareness is so perfect that not even a small corner is left dark inside your being. You are full of light, illuminated with awareness. That’s why when Buddha is asked again and again, “What happens to a man who becomes enlightened?” he remains silent. He never answers. Again and again he is asked, “Why don’t you answer?” He says, “If I answer, you will create a desire for it, and that will become a barrier. Let me keep quiet. Let me remain silent so I don’t give you a new object for desire. If I say, ‘It is satchitananda: it is truth, it is consciousness, it is bliss,’ immediately a desire will arise in you. If I talk about that ecstatic state of being in God, immediately your greed takes it. Suddenly, a desire starts arising in you. Your mind starts saying, ‘Yes, you have to seek it, you have to find it. This has to be searched. Whatsoever the cost, but you have to become blissful.’” Buddha says, “I don’t say anything about it, because whatsoever I say, your mind will jump on it and make a desire out of it, and that will become the cause, and you will never be able to attain it.”

Buddha insisted that there is no moksha. He insisted that when a man becomes aware, he simply disappears. He disappears as when you blow out a lamp and the light disappears. The word “nirvana” simply means blowing a lamp out. Then you don’t ask where the flame has gone, what has happened to the flame; it simply disappears – annihilated. Buddha insisted that there is nothing left; when you have become enlightened everything disappears, like the flame of a lamp put out. Why? – Looks very negative – but he does not want to give you an object of desire. Then people started asking, “Then why should we try for such a state? Then it is better to be in the world. At least we are; miserable – but at least we are; in anguish – but we are. And your state of nothingness has no appeal for us.”

In India, Buddhism disappeared; in China, in Burma, in Ceylon, in Japan, it reappeared, but it never appeared in its purity again because Buddhists learned a lesson: that man lives through desire. If they insist that there is nothing beyond enlightenment and everything disappears, then people are not going to follow them. Then everything will remain as it is; only their religion will disappear. So they learned a trick, and in Japan, in China, in Ceylon, in Burma, they started talking of beautiful states after enlightenment. They betrayed Buddha. The purity was lost; then religion spread. Buddhism became one of the great religions of the world. They learned the politics of the human mind. They fulfilled your desire. They said, “Yes… Lands of tremendous beauty, Buddhalands, heavenly lands where eternal bliss reigns.” They started talking in positive terms. Again people’s greeds were inflamed, desire arose. People started following Buddhism, but Buddhism lost its beauty. Its beauty was in its insistence that it would not give you any object for desire.

Patanjali has written the best that it is possible to write about the ultimate truth, but no religion has arisen around him, no established church exists around him. Such a great teacher, such a great Master has remained really without a following. Not a single temple is devoted to him. What happened? His Yoga Sutras are read, commented upon, but nothing like Christianity, Buddhism, Jainism, Hinduism, Mohammedanism, exists with Patanjali. Why? – Because he will not give any hope to you. He will not give any help to your desire. 

One who is able to maintain a constant state of desirelessness, even towards the most exalted states of enlightenment, and is able to exercise the highest kind of discrimination, enters the state known as ‘the cloud which showers virtue’. 

Dharma megha samadhi: this word has to be understood. It is very complex. And so many commentaries have been written on Patanjali, but it seems they go on missing the point. Dharma megha samadhi means: a moment comes when every desire has disappeared. When even the self is no more desired, when death is not feared, virtue showers on you – as if a cloud gathers around your head, and a beautiful shower of virtue, a benediction, a great blessing…. But why does Patanjali call it ‘cloud’? – One has to go even beyond that; it is still a cloud. Before, your eyes were full of vice, now your eyes are full of virtue, but you are still blind. Before, nothing but misery was showering on you, just a hell was showering on you; now, you have entered heaven and everything is perfectly beautiful, there is nothing to complain about, but still it is a cloud. Maybe it is a white cloud, not a black cloud, but still it is a cloud – and one has to go beyond it also. That’s why he calls it ‘cloud’.

That is the last barrier, and of course it is very beautiful because it is of virtue. It is like golden chains studded with diamonds. They are not like ordinary chains; they look very ornamental. They are more like ornaments than chains. One would like to cling to them. Who would not like to have a tremendous happiness showering on oneself, a non-ending happiness? Who would not like to be in this ecstasy forever and ever? But this too is a cloud – white, beautiful, but still the real sky is hidden behind it.

There is a possibility from this exalted point to still fall back. If you become too attached to dharma megha samadhi, if you become too much attached, you start enjoying it too much and you don’t discriminate that “I am also not this,” there is a possibility that you will come back.

In Christianity, Judaism, Mohammedanism, only two states exist: hell and heaven. This is what Christians call heaven, what Patanjali calls dharma megha samadhi. In the West, no religion has risen beyond that. In India we have three terms: hell, heaven and moksha. Hell is absolute misery; heaven is absolute happiness; moksha is beyond both: neither hell nor heaven. In Western language, there exists not a single term equivalent to moksha. Christianity stops at heaven – dharma megha samadhi. Who bothers anymore to go beyond it? It is so beautiful. And you have lived in so much misery for so long; you would like to remain there forever and ever. But Patanjali says, “If you cling to it, you slip from the last rung of the ladder. You were just close to home. One step more, and then you would have achieved the point of no return – but you slipped. You were just reaching home and you missed the path. You were just at the door – a knock and the doors would have opened – but you thought that the porch was the palace and you started living there.” Sooner or later you will even lose the porch, because the porch exists for those who are going into the palace. It cannot be made an abode. If you make an abode of it, sooner or later you will be thrown out: you are not worthy. You are like a beggar who has started to live on somebody’s porch.

You have to enter the palace; then the porch will remain available. But if you stop at the porch even the porch will be taken away. And the porch is very beautiful, and we have never known anything like that, so certainly we misunderstand – we think the palace has come. We have lived always in anxiety, misery, tension, and even the porch, even to be close to the ultimate palace, to be so close  to the ultimate truth, is so silent, so peaceful, so blissful, such a great benediction, that you cannot imagine that better than that is possible. You would like to settle here.

Patanjali says, “Remain aware.” That’s why he calls it a cloud. It can blind you; you can be lost in it. If you can transcend this cloud – Tatah klesa-karma-nivrttih – Then follows freedom from afflictions and karmas.

If you can transcend dharma megha samadhi, if you can transcend this heavenly state, this paradise, then only… then follows freedom from afflictions and karmas. Otherwise, you will fall back into the world. Have you seen small children play a game called ludo, ladders and snakes? From the ladders they go on rising, and from the snakes they go on coming back. From point ninety-nine, if they reach a hundred they have won the game, they are victorious. But from point ninety-nine there is a snake. If you reach ninety-nine, you are suddenly back, back into the world.

Dharma megha samadhi is the ninety-ninth point, but the snake is there. Before the snake takes hold of you, you have to jump to the hundredth point. Only then, there is abode. You have come back home; a full circle.

-Osho

From Yoga: The Path to Liberation, Discourse #9 (previously published as Yoga: The Alpha and the Omega, V.10)

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

I have split the last sutra discourse from the Yoga series into three posts. This is the second of three. The first one is The Virtuous Circle and the third is You Are the Abode of the Ultimate.

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 Virtuous Circle – Osho

Visesa-darsinaatma-bhava-bhavanavinivrttih.

When one has seen this distinction, there is a cessation of desire for dwelling in the atma, the self.

Buddha has called the ultimate state of consciousness anatta – no self, non-being. It is very difficult to comprehend it. Buddha has said that the last desire to drop is the desire to be. There are millions of desires. The whole world is nothing but desire objects, but the basic desire is to be. The basic desire is to continue, to persist, to remain. Death is the greatest fear; the last desire to be dropped is the desire to be.

Patanjali in this sutra says: when your awareness has become perfect, when viveka, discrimination has been achieved, when you have become a witness, a pure witness of whatsoever happens, outside you, inside you…. You are no more a doer, you are simply watching; the birds are singing outside… you watch; the blood is circulating inside… you watch; the thoughts are moving inside… you watch – you never get identified anywhere. You don’t say, “I am the body”; you don’t say, “I am the mind”; you don’t say anything. You simply go on watching without being identified with any object. You remain a pure subject; you simply remember one thing: that you are the watcher, the witness – when this witnessing is established, then the desire to be disappears.

And the moment the desire to be disappears, death also disappears. Death exists because you want to persist. Death exists because you don’t want to die. Death exists because you are struggling against the whole. The moment you are ready to die, death is meaningless; it cannot be possible now. When you are ready to die, how can you die? In the very readiness of dying, disappearing, all possibility of death is overcome. This is the paradox of religion.

Jesus says, “If you are going to cling to yourself, you will lose yourself. If you want to attain yourself, don’t cling.” Those who try to be are destroyed. Not that somebody is there destroying you; your very effort to be is destructive because the moment the idea arises: “I should persist,” you are moving against the whole. It is as if a wave is trying to be against the ocean. Now the very effort is going to create worry and misery, and one moment will come when the wave will have to disappear. But now, because the wave was fighting against the ocean, the disappearance will look like death. If the wave was ready, and the wave was aware: “I’m nothing but the ocean, so what is the point in persisting? I have been always and I will be always, because the ocean has always been there and will be always there. I may not exist as a wave – wave is just the form I have taken for the moment.

The form will disappear, but not my content. I may not exist like this wave; I may exist like another wave, or I may not exist as a wave as such. I may become the very depth of the ocean where no waves arise….”

But the innermost reality is going to remain because the whole has penetrated you. You are nothing but the whole, an expression of the whole. Once awareness is established, Patanjali says, “When one has seen this distinction, that ‘I am neither this nor that’, when one has become aware and is not identified with anything whatsoever, there is a cessation of desire for dwelling in the atma, in the self.” Then the last desire disappears, and the last is the fundamental. Hence, Buddha says, “You can drop desiring money, wealth, power, prestige – that’s nothing. You can stop desiring the world – that’s nothing – because those are secondary desires. The basic desire is to be.” So people who renounce the world start desiring liberation, but liberation is also their liberation. They will remain in moksha, in a liberated state. They desire that pain should not be there. They desire that misery should not be there. They will be in absolute bliss, but they will be. The insistence is that they must be there.

That’s why Buddha could not get roots into this country which thinks itself very religious. The most religious man who was born on this earth could not get roots into this religious country. What happened? He said, he insisted, to drop the basic desire of being: he said, “Be a non-being.” He said, “Don’t be.” He said, “Don’t ask for liberation because the freedom is not for you. The freedom is going to be freedom from you; not for you, but from you.”

Liberation is liberation from yourself. See the distinction: it is not for you; liberation is not for you. It is not that liberated you will exist. Liberated, you will disappear. Buddha said, “Only bondage exists.”

Let me try to explain it to you.

Have you ever come across health? You have been healthy many times, but can you say what health is? Only disease exists. Health is non-existential; you cannot pin-point it. If you have a headache you know it is there, but have you ever known the absence of headache? In fact, if there is no headache the head- also disappears. You don’t feel it anymore. If you go on feeling your head, that simply shows that there must be a certain tension inside, a certain stress, a strain. A sort of headache must be there continuously. If your whole body is healthy, the body disappears. You forget that the body is. In Zen, when meditators sit for many years, just sitting and doing nothing, a certain moment comes when they forget that they have bodies. That is their first satori. Not that the body is not there; body is there but there is no tension, so how to feel it? If I say something you can hear me, but if I’m silent how can you hear me? Silence is there – it has much to communicate to you – but silence cannot be heard. Sometimes when you say, “Yes, I can hear the silence,” then you are hearing some noise. Maybe it is the noise of the dark night, but it is still noise. If it is absolutely silent, you will not be able to hear it. When your body is perfectly healthy, you don’t feel it. If some tension arises in the body, some disease, some illness, then you start hearing. If everything is in harmony and there is no pain and no misery, suddenly you are empty. A nothingness overwhelms you.

Kaivalya is the ultimate health, wholeness, all wounds healed. When all wounds heal, how can you exist? The self is nothing but accumulated tensions. The self is nothing but all sorts of diseases, illnesses. The self is nothing but desires unfulfilled, hopes frustrated, expectations, dreams – all broken, fractured. It is nothing but accumulated disease, that you call ‘self’. Or take it from another side: in moments of harmony you forget that you are. Later on, you may remember how beautiful it was, how fantastic it was, how far-out. But in moments of real far-outness, you are not there. Something bigger than you has overpowered you; something higher than you has possessed you; something deeper than you has bubbled up. You have disappeared. In deep moments of love, lovers disappear. In deep moments of silence, meditators disappear. In deep moments of singing, dancing, celebration, celebrators disappear. And this is going to be the last celebration, the ultimate, the highest peak – kaivalya.

Patanjali says, “Even the desire to be disappears. Even the desire to remain disappears.” One is so fulfilled, so tremendously fulfilled that one never thinks in terms of being. For what? – you want to be there tomorrow also because today is unfulfilled. The tomorrow is needed; otherwise you will die unfulfilled. The yesterday was a deep frustration; today is again a frustration; tomorrow is needed. A frustrated mind creates future. A frustrated mind clings with the future. A frustrated mind wants to be because now, if death comes, no flower has flowered. Nothing has yet happened; there has only been a fruitless waiting: “Now, how can I die? I have not even lived yet.” That unlived life creates a desire to be.

People are so much afraid of death: these are the people who have not lived. These are the people who are, in a certain sense, already dead. A person who has lived and lived totally does not think about death. If it comes, good; he will welcome. He will live that too, he will celebrate that too. Life has been such a blessing, a benediction; one is even ready to accept death. Life has been such a tremendous experience; one is ready to experience death also. One is not afraid because the tomorrow is not needed; the today has been so fulfilling. One has come to fruition, flowered, bloomed. Now the desire for tomorrow disappears. The desire for tomorrow is always out of fear, and fear is there because love has not happened. The desire to always remain simply shows that deep down you are feeling yourself completely meaningless. You are waiting for some meaning. Once the meaning has happened, you are ready to die – silently, beautifully, gracefully.

“Kaivalya,” Patanjali says, “happens only when the last desire to be has disappeared.” The whole problem is to be or not to be. The whole life we try to be this and that, and the ultimate can happen only when you are not.

When one has seen this distinction, there is a cessation of desire for dwelling in the atma, the self.

The self is nothing but the most purified form of the ego. It is the last remnant of strain, stress, tension. You are still not perfectly open; something is still closed. When you are completely open, just a watcher on the hill, a witness, even the death desire disappears. With the disappearance of this desire, something absolutely new happens in life. A new law starts functioning. You have heard about the law of gravitation; you have not heard about the law of grace. The law of gravitation is that everything falls downwards. The law of grace is that things start falling upwards. And that law has to be there because in life everything is balanced by the opposite. Science has come to discover the law of gravitation: Newton sitting on a bench in a garden saw one apple falling – it happened or not; that is not the point – but seeing that the apple was falling down, a thought arose in him: “Why do things always fall downwards? Why not otherwise? Why doesn’t a ripe fruit fall upwards and disappear into the sky? Why not sideways? Why always downwards?” He started brooding and meditating, and then he discovered a law. He came upon, stumbled upon a very fundamental law: that the earth is gravitating things towards itself. It has a gravitation field. Like a magnet, it pulls everything downwards.

Patanjali, Buddha, Krishna, Christ – they also became aware of a different fundamental law, higher than gravitation. They became aware that there comes a moment in the inner life of consciousness when consciousness starts rising upwards – exactly like gravitation. If the apple is hanging on the tree, it does not fall. The tree helps it not to fall downwards. When the fruit leaves the tree, then it falls downwards.

Exactly the same: if you are clinging to your body you will not fall upwards; if you are clinging to your mind you will not fall upwards. If you are clinging to the idea of self, you will remain under the impact of gravitation – because body is under the impact of gravitation, and mind also. Mind is subtle body; body is gross mind. They are both under the impact of gravitation. And because you are clinging to them you are not under the impact of gravitation, but you are clinging to something which is under the impact of gravitation. It is as if you are carrying a big rock and trying to swim in a river; the rock will pull you down. It won’t allow you to swim. If you leave the rock, you will be able to swim easily.

We are clinging to something which is functioning under the law of gravitation: body, mind. “Once,” Patanjali says, “you have become aware that you are neither the body nor the mind, suddenly you start rising upwards.” Some center somewhere high in the sky pulls you up. That law is called ‘grace’.

Then God pulls you upwards. And that type of law has to be there, otherwise gravitation could not exist. In nature, if positive electricity exists, then negative electricity has to exist. Man exists, then the woman has to exist. Reason exists, then intuition has to exist. Night exists, then the day has to exist. Life exists, then death has to exist. Everything needs the opposite to balance it. Now science has become aware of one law: gravitation. Science still needs a Patanjali to give it another dimension, the dimension of falling upwards. Then life becomes complete.

You are a meeting place of gravitation and grace. In you, grace and gravitation are crisscrossing. You have something of the earth and something of the sky within you. You are the horizon where earth and sky are meeting. If you hold too much to the earth, then you will forget completely that you belong to the sky, to the infinite space, the beyond. Once you are no more attached with the earth part of you, suddenly you start rising high.

When one has seen this distinction, there is a cessation of desire for dwelling in the self.

Tadahiviveka-nimnam kaivalya-pragbharam cittam.

Then the mind is inclined towards discrimination, and gravitates towards liberation.

A new gravitation starts functioning. Liberation is nothing but entering the stream of grace. You cannot liberate yourself, you can only drop the barriers; liberation happens to you. Have you seen a magnet? – small iron pieces are pulled towards it. You can see those small iron pieces rushing towards the magnet, but don’t be deceived by your eyes. In fact, they are not rushing, the magnet is pulling them. On the surface it appears that those iron filings are going, moving towards the magnet.

That is just on the surface. Deep down, something just opposite is happening: they are not moving towards the magnet, the magnet is pulling them towards itself. In fact, it is the magnet which has reached them. With the magnetic field it has approached them, touched them, pulled them. If those iron filings are free, not attached to something – not attached to a rock – then the magnet can pull them. If they are attached to a rock, the magnet will go on pulling but they will not be pulled because they are attached.

Exactly the same happens: once you discriminate that you are not the body, you are no more bound to any rock, you are no more in bondage with earth. Immediately, God’s magnet starts functioning. It is not that you reach to God. In fact, God has already reached you. You are under His magnetic field, but clinging to something. Drop that clinging and you are in the stream. Buddha used to use a word srotaapanna: falling into the stream. He used to say, “Once you fall into the stream, then the stream takes you to the ocean. Then you need not do anything.” The only thing is to jump into the stream. You are sitting on the bank. Enter the stream and then the stream will do the remaining work. It is as if you are standing on a high building, on the roof of a high building, three hundred feet or five hundred feet above the earth. You go on standing, the gravitation has reached you, but it will not work unless you jump. Once you jump, then you need not do anything. Just a step off the roof… enough; your work is finished. Now the gravitation will do all the work. You need not ask, “Now what am I supposed to do?” You have taken the first step. The first is the last step. Krishnamurti has written a book, The First and the Last Freedom. The meaning is: the first step is the last step because once you are in the stream; everything else is to be done by the stream. You are not needed. Only for the first step is your courage needed.

Then the mind is inclined towards discrimination, and gravitates towards liberation.

You start moving slowly upwards. Your life energy starts rising high – an upsurge. And it is unbelievable when it happens because it is against all the laws that you have known up to now. It is levitation, not gravitation. Something in you simply starts moving upwards, and there is no barrier to it. Nothing bars its path. Just a little relaxation, a little unclinging – the first step – and then automatically, spontaneously, your consciousness becomes more and more discriminative, more and more aware.

Let me tell you about another thing. You have heard the word, the phrase: ‘vicious circle’. Let us make another phrase: ‘virtuous circle’. In a vicious circle, one bad thing leads to another. For example, if you get angry then one anger leads you to more anger, and of course, more anger will lead you to still more anger. Now you are in a vicious circle. Each anger will make the habit of anger more strong, and will create more anger, and more anger will make the habit still more strong, and on and on. You move in a vicious circle which goes on becoming stronger and stronger and stronger.

Let us try a new word: virtuous circle. If you become aware, what Patanjali calls vivek, awareness; if you become aware: vairagya. Discrimination creates renunciation. If you become aware, suddenly you see that you are no more the body. Not that you renounce the body; in your very awareness the body is renounced. If you become aware, you become aware that these thoughts are not you.

In that very awareness those thoughts are renounced. You have started dropping them. You don’t give them any more energy; you don’t cooperate with them. Your cooperation has stopped, and they cannot live without your energy. They live on your energy, they exploit you. They don’t have their own energy. Each thought that enters you partakes of your energy. And because you are kaivalya willing to give your energy, it lives there, it makes its abode there. Of course, then its children come, and friends, and relatives, and this goes on. Once you are a little aware, vivek brings vairagya, awareness brings renunciation. And renunciation makes you capable of becoming more aware. And of course, more awareness brings more vairagya, more renunciation, and so on and so forth. This is what I am calling the virtuous circle: one virtue leads to another, and each virtue becomes again a ground for more virtue to arise. “This goes on,” Patanjali says, “to the last moment” – what he calls, dharma megha samadhi. We will be coming to it later on. He calls it ‘the cloud of virtue showering on you’. This virtuous circle, vivek leading to vairagya, vairagya leading to more vivek, vivek again creating more possibilities for vairagya, and so on and so forth – comes to the ultimate peak when the cloud of virtue showers on you: dharma megha samadhi.

In breaks of discrimination, other pratyayas, concepts, arise through the force of previous impressions.

Still, though, many intervals will be there. So don’t be discouraged. Even if you have become very aware and in sudden moments you feel the pull, the upward pull of grace, and in certain moments you are in the stream, floating perfectly beautifully, with no effort, effortlessly, and everything is going and running smoothly, still there will be gaps. Suddenly you will find yourself standing again on the bank just because of old habits. For so many lives you have lived on the bank. Just because of the old habit, again and again the past will overpower you. Don’t be discouraged by it. The moment you see that you are again on the bank, again get down into the stream. Don’t be sad about it, because if you become sad you will again be in a vicious circle. Don’t be sad about it. Many times the seeker comes at very close quarters, and many times he loses the track. No need to be worried; again bring awareness. This is going to happen many times; it is natural. For so many millions of lives we have lived in unawareness – it is only natural that many times the old habit will start functioning. Let me tell you a few anecdotes.

The boss was full of confidence as he approached the reception desk at a large hotel with his secretary and signed the register as Mr. and Mrs.

“Double or twin beds?” enquired the clerk.

He turned to his secretary and asked casually, “Would a double be alright, darling?”

“Yes, sir,” she answered.

“Yes, sir,” the wife was saying to the husband! – but just the old habit of being a secretary, continuously saying, “Yes sir, yes sir, yes sir.” Habits become very ingrained, and they catch hold of you in such a way that unless you are very, very watchful, you will not even suspect.

It happened: An indignant schoolteacher rang the local police station to complain that a crowd of young hooligans had chalked four-letter words all over her front door. “And what is more,” she concluded, “they have not even spelled them right!”

A school teacher is just a school teacher. She is complaining against the four-letter words, but the basic complaint is that they have not even spelled them right. Continuously correcting the spelling of children….

In breaks of discrimination, other concepts arise through the force of previous impressions.

Many times you will be pulled back, again and again and again. The struggle is hard, but not impossible. It is difficult, it is very arduous, but don’t become sad and don’t become discouraged.

Whenever you remember again, don’t be worried about what has happened. Let your awareness again be established, that’s all. Continuously establishing your awareness again and again and again will create a new impact inside your being, a new impression of virtue. One day, it becomes as natural as other habits.

-Osho

From Yoga: The Path to Liberation, Discourse #9 (previously published as Yoga: The Alpha and the Omega, V.10)

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

I have split up the last sutra discourse from the Yoga series into three posts. This is the first of three. The second one is The Cloud Which Showers Virtue and the third is You Are the Abode of the Ultimate.

 

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.

You Are the Abode of the Ultimate – Osho

Then follows freedom from afflictions and karmas. That which can be known through the mind is very little compared with the infinite knowledge obtained in enlightenment, when the veils, distortions, and impurities are removed. 

Just a few sutras back, Patanjali said that the mind is infinitely knowledgeable, the mind can know infinitely. Now he says that that which can be known through the mind is very little compared with the infinite knowledge obtained in enlightenment.

As you progress higher, each state is bigger than the first state that you have transcended. When one is lost in his senses, the mind functions in a crippled way. When one is no more lost in the senses and no more attached to the body, the mind starts functioning in a perfectly healthy way. An infinite apprehension happens to mind; it becomes capable of knowing infinities. But that too is nothing compared to when mind is completely dropped and you start functioning without mind. No medium is now needed. All wheels disappear and you are immediate to reality. Not even mind is there as an agent, as a go-between. Nothing is in between. You and the reality are one. The knowledge that comes through mind is nothing compared to the knowledge that happens through enlightenment.

Having fulfilled their object, the process of change in the three gunas comes to an end.

For the enlightened person the whole world stops, because now there is no need for the world to go on. The ultimate has been achieved. The world exists as a situation. The world exists for your growth. The school exists for learning. When you have learned the lesson, the school is no more for you; you have graduated. When somebody attains enlightenment, he has graduated from the world. Now the school no longer has any function for him. Now he can forget about the school, and the school can forget about him. He has gone beyond, he has grown. The situation is no longer needed.

The world is a situation: it is a situation for you to go astray and come back home. It is a situation to be lost in and then come back. It is a situation to forget God and then remember Him again.

But why this situation? – Because there is a subtle law: if you cannot forget God, you cannot remember Him. If there is no possibility to forget Him, how will you remember, why will you remember? That which is always available is easily forgotten. The fish in the ocean never knows the ocean, never comes across it. He lives in it, is born in it, dies in it, but never comes to know the ocean. There is only one situation when the fish comes to know the ocean: when it is taken out of the ocean. Then suddenly it becomes aware that this was the ocean, his life. When the fish is thrown on the bank, on the sand, then she knows what ocean is.

We needed to be thrown out of the ocean of God; there was no other way to know Him. The world is a great situation to become aware. Anguish is there, pain is there, but it is all meaningful. Nothing is meaningless in the world. Suffering is meaningful. The suffering is just like the fish suffering on the bank, in the sand, and making all efforts to go back to the ocean. Now, if the fish goes back to the ocean she will know. Nothing has changed – the ocean is the same, the fish is the same – but their relationship has tremendously changed. Now she will know, “This is the ocean.” Now she will know how grateful she is to the ocean. The suffering has created a new understanding. Before also she was in the same ocean, but now the same ocean is no more the same because a new understanding exists, a new awareness, a new recognition.

Man needs to be thrown out of God. To be thrown into the world is nothing but to be thrown out of God. And it is out of compassion, out of the compassion of the whole that you are thrown out, so that you try to find the way back. By effort, by arduous effort you will be able to reach, and then you will understand. You have to pay for it by your efforts, otherwise God would be too cheap. And when a thing is too cheap, you cannot enjoy it. Otherwise, God would be too obvious. When a thing is too obvious you tend to forget. Otherwise, God would be too close to you and there would be no space to know Him. That will be the real misery, not to know Him. The misery of the world is not a misery;

it is a blessing in disguise because only through this misery will you come to know the tremendous blissfulness of recognizing, of seeing face to face… the divine truth. 

Having fulfilled their object, the process of change in the three gunas comes to an end.

The whole world of the three gunas: sattva, rajas, tamas, comes to an end. Whenever somebody becomes enlightened, for him the world comes to an end. Of course, others go on dreaming. If there are too many fish suffering on the bank, in the hot sand, in the burning sun, and one fish tries and tries and jumps into the ocean, again back home, for her, or for him, the hot sun and the burning sand and all the misery has disappeared. It is already a nightmare of the past; but for others, it exists.

When a fish like Buddha, Patanjali, jumps into the ocean, for them the world has disappeared. They are again back in the cool womb of the ocean. They are back again, joined, connected to the infinite life. They are no longer disconnected; they are no longer alienated. They have become aware. They have come back with a new understanding: alert, enlightened – but for others the world continues.

These sutras of Patanjali are nothing but messages of a fish who has reached home, trying to jump and say something to the people who are still on the bank and suffering. Maybe they are very close to the ocean, just on the border, but they don’t know how to enter into it. They are not making enough effort, or, are making them in the wrong directions, or, are simply lost in misery and have accepted that this is what life is, or, are so frustrated, discouraged, that they are not making any effort. Yoga is the effort to reach to that reality with which we have become disconnected. To be reconnected is to be a yogi. Yoga means: re-connection, re-union, re-merging. 

Kramaha, the process, is the succession of changes that occur from moment to moment, which become apprehensible at the final end of the transformations of the three gunas.

In this small sutra Patanjali has said everything that modern physics has come to discover. Just thirty or forty years ago, it would have been impossible to understand this sutra because the whole quantum physics is present, in seed form, in this small sutra. And this is good, because this is just the last-but-one. So Patanjali summarizes the whole world of physics in this last-but-one sutra: then, the (meta) physics. This is the essential physics. The greatest insight that has come to physics in this century is the theory of quantum.

Max Planck discovered a very unbelievable thing. He discovered that life is not a continuity; everything is discontinuous. One moment of time is separate from another moment of time, and between the two moments of time there is a space. They are not connected; they are disconnected. One atom is separate from another atom, and between the two atoms there is great space. They are not connected. This is what he calls ’quanta’: distinct, separate atoms not bridged with each other, floating in infinite space, but separate – just as you pour peas from one carton into another and the peas all fall, separate, distinct, or, if you pour oil from one container into another, the oil falls in a continuity.

The existence is like peas, separate. Why does Patanjali mention this? – Because he says, “One atom, another atom: these are two things the world consists of. Just between the two is the space. That is what the whole consists of, the God. Call it space, call it brahma, call it purusa or whatsoever you like; the world consists of distinct atoms, and the whole consists of the infinite space between the two. ”

Now physicists say that if we press the whole world and press the space out of it, all the stars and all the suns can be pressed into just a small ball. Only that much matter exists. It is really space. Matter is very rare, here and there. If we press the earth very much, we can put it into a matchbox. If all the space is thrown out, unbelievable! “And that too, if we go on pressing it still more,” Patanjali says, “then even that small quantity will disappear.” Now physicists say that when matter disappears it leaves black holes.

Everything comes out of nothingness, plays around, disappears again into nothingness. As there are material bodies: earth, sun, stars, there are, just similar to them, empty holes, black holes. Those black holes are nothingness condensed. It is not simply nothingness; it is very dynamic – whirlpools of nothingness. If a star comes by a black hole, the black hole will suck it in. So it is very dynamic, but it is nothing – no matter in it, simply absence of matter; just pure space, but tremendously powerful. It can suck any star in, and the star will disappear into nothingness; it will be reduced to nothingness. So ultimately, if we try, then all matter will disappear. It comes out of a tremendous nothingness, and it drops again into a tremendous nothingness: out of nothingness, and back into nothingness. 

Kramaha, the process – the process of quantum – is the succession of changes that occur from moment to moment which becomes apprehensible at the final end of the transformations of the three gunas.

This the yogi comes to see at the final stage, when all the three gunas are disappearing into black holes, disappearing into nothingness. That’s why yogis have called the world maya, a magic show.

Have you seen a magician producing a mango tree within seconds, and then it goes on growing; and not only that – within seconds mangoes have appeared… out of nothing? It is just illusory; he creates illusion. Maybe he sends deep messages to your unconscious. It is just like deep hypnosis. He creates the idea, but he visualizes his idea so deeply and he impresses it on your unconscious so deeply that you also start seeing it as he wants you to see it. Nothing is happening. The tree is not there, the mango is not there. And it is possible, just out of great imagination, to create a mango tree, and mangoes come. Not only that, but he can pluck one mango and give it to you and you will say, “Very sweet.”

Hindus call the world maya, a magic show. It is God’s imagination. The whole is dreaming, the whole is projecting.

You go to a movie: on a wide screen you see a great story being enacted, and you see that everything seems to be continuous, but it is not. If the film is moved a little slower, you will see that everything is discontinuous – quanta. One picture goes, another comes, another goes, another comes, but between two pictures there is a gap. In that gap you can see the real screen. When the pictures are moving very fast, they create an illusion of movement. Of course, a movie film is not a moving film. It is as static a photograph as any other. The movement is illusory because those static photographs are running after each other so fast, the gap between them is so small, that you cannot see the gap. So everything looks as if it is continuous.

I move my hand: to show this hand moving in a film, thousands of pictures will be needed of each state of stasis – from this point to this, from this point to this, from this point to this. The one simple movement of the hand will be divided into thousands of small static movements. Then all those pictures move fast: the hand seems to be moving. It is an illusion. Deep down, between two pictures, it is a white screen, empty.

Patanjali says, “The world is nothing but a cinematograph, a projection.” But this understanding arises only when one achieves to the last point of understanding. When he sees all gunas stopped, nothing is moving, suddenly he becomes aware that the whole story was created by illusory movement, by fast movement. This is what is happening to modern physics.

First they said when they had come to the atom, “Now this is the ultimate; it cannot be divided anymore.” Then they also divided the atom. Then they came to electrons: “Now it cannot be divided anymore.” Now they have divided that too. Now they have come to nothingness; now they don’t know what has come. Division, division, division, and a point has come in modern physics where matter has completely disappeared. Modern physics has reached via matter, and Patanjali and the yogis have reached to the same point via consciousness. Up to this last-but-one sutra, physics has reached. Up to this last-but-one sutra, scientists can have an approach, an understanding, a penetration. The last sutra is not possible for scientists, because that last sutra can be achieved only if you move through consciousness, not through matter; not through objects, but directly through subjectivity.

Purusartha-sunyanam gunanam pratiprasavah kaivalyam Svarupa-pratistha va citi-sakter iti. 

Kaivalya is the state of enlightenment that follows the reemergence of the gunas, due to their becoming devoid of the object of the purusa. In this state, the purusa is established in his real nature which is pure consciousness. Finish.

Kaivalya is the state of enlightenment that follows the remergence of the three gunas… when the world stops, when the process, the kramaha of the world stops, when you become able to see between two moments of time and two atoms of matter, and you can move into space, and you can see that everything has arisen out of space and is moving back into space; when you have become so aware that suddenly the illusory world disappears like a dream, then kaivalya. Then you are left as pure consciousness – with no identity, with no name, no form. Then you are the purest of the pure. Then you are the most fundamental, the most essential, the most existential, and you are established in this purity, aloneness.

Patanjali says, “Kaivalya is the state of enlightenment that follows the remergence of the gunas, due to their becoming devoid of the object of the Purusa. In this state the Purusa is established in his real nature.” You have come back home. The journey has been long, torturous, arduous, but you have come back home. The fish has jumped into the ocean which is pure consciousness.

Patanjali does not say anything more about it, because more cannot be said. And when Patanjali says, “Finish; the end,” he does not only mean that the Yoga Sutras finish here. He says, “All possibility to express ends here. All possibility to say anything about the ultimate reality ends here. Beyond this is only experience. Expression ends here.” And nobody has been able to go beyond it – nobody. Not a single exception exists in the whole history of human consciousness. People have tried. Very few have even reached to where Patanjali had reached, but nobody has been able to go beyond Patanjali.

That’s why I say he’s the alpha and the omega. He starts from the very beginning; nobody has been able to find a better beginning than him. He begins from the very beginning and he comes to the very end. When he says, “Finish,” he’s simply saying expression is finished, definition is finished, description is finished. If you have really come with him up to now, there is only experience beyond.

Now starts the existential. One can be it, but one cannot say it. One can live in it, but one cannot define it. Words won’t help. All language is impotent beyond this point. Simply saying this much: that one achieves to one’s own true nature – Patanjali stops. That’s the goal: to know one’s nature and to live in it – because unless we reach to our own natures we will be in misery. All misery is indicative that we are living somehow unnaturally. All misery is simply symptomatic that somehow our nature is not being fulfilled, that somehow we are not in tune with our reality. The misery is not your enemy; it is just a symptom. It indicates. It is like a thermometer; it simply shows that you are going wrong somewhere. Put it all right, put yourself right; bring yourself in harmony, come back, tune yourself. When every misery disappears one is in tune with one’s nature.

That nature Lao Tzu calls tao, Patanjali calls kaivalya, Mahavir calls moksha, Buddha calls nirvana. But whatsoever you want to call it – it has no name and it has no form – it is in you, present, right this moment. You have lost the ocean because you have come out of your Self. You have moved too much in the outer world. Move inwards. Now, let this be your pilgrimage: move inwards.

It happened: A Sufi mystic, Bayazid, was going on a pilgrimage to Mecca. It was difficult. He was poor and somehow he had managed the travelling expenses by begging for years. Now he was very happy. He had almost the necessary money to go to Mecca, and then he travelled. By the time he reached near Mecca, just outside the town he met a fakir, his Master. He was sitting there just under a tree, and he said, “Oh fool, where are you going?” Bayazid looked at him; he had never seen such a luminous being. He came near him and the man said, “Give me whatsoever you have! Where are you going?” He said, “I am going to Mecca for a pilgrimage.” He said, “Finish. There is now no need; you just worship me. You can move around me as many times as you like. You can do your parikrama, your circumlocution, around me. I am Mecca.” And Bayazid was so filled with this person’s magnetism that he gave all his money, he worshipped. Then the old man said, “Now go back home”; and he went back home.

When he went into his town people gathered and said, “Something seems to have happened to you. So really it works, going to Mecca works? You are looking luminous, so full of light.” He said, “Stop this nonsense! One old man met me – he changed my whole pilgrimage. He says, ‘Go home,’ and since then I have been going home, inwards. I have arrived. I have arrived, I have reached to my Mecca.”

The outer Mecca is not the real Mecca. The real Mecca is inside you. You are the temple of God.You are the abode of the ultimate. So the question is not where to find truth, the question is: how have you lost it? The question is not where to go; you are already there – stop going.

Drop from all the paths. All paths are of desire, extensions of desire, projections of desire: going somewhere, going somewhere, always somewhere else, never here.

Seeker, leave all paths, because all paths lead there, and He is here.

Purusartha-sunyanam gunanam pratiprasavah kaivalyam Svarupa-pratistha va citi-sakter iti.

-Osho

From Yoga: The Path to Liberation, Discourse #9 (previously published as Yoga: The Alpha and the Omega, V.10)

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

I have split the last sutra discourse from the Yoga series into three posts. This is the last of three. The first one is The Virtuous Circle and the second one is The Cloud Which Sh0wers Virtue.

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.