Centering is the Method, Not the Result – Osho

If enlightenment and samadhi mean total consciousness, cosmic consciousness, all-pervading consciousness, then it seems very strange to call this state of cosmic consciousness centering, as the word ‘centering’ implies one -pointedness. Why is cosmic consciousness, or samadhi, called centering?

Centering is the path, not the goal. Centering is the method, not the result. Samadhi is not called centering; centering is the technique to samadhi. Of course, they look contradictory because when one realizes, becomes enlightened, there is no center left.

Jacob Boehme has said that when one comes to the divine it can be described in two ways: either the center is everywhere now, or the center is nowhere; both mean the same thing. So the word ‘centering’ seems contradictory, but the path is not the goal and the method is not the result. And method can be contradictory. So we have to understand it because these one hundred and twelve methods are methods of centering.

But once you become centered you will explode. Centering is just to gather yourself totally at one point. Once you are gathered at one point, crystallized at one point, that point explodes automatically. Then there is no center – or then the center is everywhere. So centering is a means to explode.

Why does centering become the method? If you are not centered your energy is unfocused, it cannot explode. It is spread out; it cannot explode. Explosion needs great energy. Explosion means that now you are not spread out – you are at one point. You become atomic; you become, really, a spiritual atom. And only when you are centered enough to become an atom can you explode. Then there is an atomic explosion.

That explosion is not talked about because it cannot be, so only the method is given. The result is not talked about. It cannot be talked about. If you do the method the result will follow, and there is no way to express it.

So remember this: basically, religion never talks about the experience itself, it talks only about the method; it shows the how, not the what. The what is left to you. If you do the how, the what will come to you. And there is no way to convey it. One can know it, but he cannot convey it. It is such an infinite experience that language becomes useless. The vastness is such that no word is capable of expressing it. So only the method is given.

Buddha is reported to have said continuously for forty years, “Do not ask me about the truth, about the divine, about nirvana, liberation. Do not ask me anything about such things. Just ask me how to reach there. I can show you the path, but I cannot give you the experience, not even in words.” The experience is personal; method is impersonal. Method is scientific, impersonal; experience is always personal and poetic.

What do I mean when I differentiate in this way? Method is scientific. If you can do it, centering will result. That centering is bound to result if the method is done. If the centering is not happening, then you can know that you are missing the point somewhere. Somewhere you have missed the method; you have not followed it. Method is scientific; centering is scientific; but when the explosion comes to you, it is poetic.

By poetic, I mean every one of you will experience it in a different way. Then there is no common ground. And everyone will express it in a different way. Buddha says something, Mahavir says something, Krishna says something else, and Jesus, Mohammed, Moses and Lao Tsu, they all differ – not in methods, but in the way they express their experience. Only on one thing do they all agree, that whatsoever they are saying is not expressing that which they have felt. Only on that one point do they agree.

Still, they try. Still, they try to convey somehow, to hint. It seems impossible, but if you have a sympathetic heart something may be conveyed. But that needs a deep sympathy and love and reverence. So really, whenever something is conveyed it doesn’t depend on the conveyer, it depends on you. If you can receive it in deep love and reverence, then something reaches you. But if you are critical about it, then nothing reaches. Firstly, it is difficult to express. And even if it is expressed you are critical – then the message becomes impossible; there is no communication.

The communication is very delicate. That is why in all these one hundred and twelve methods it has been left out completely – only hinted at. Shiva says so many times: “Do this, and then the experience,” and then he becomes silent. “Do this, and then the blessing,” and then he becomes silent.

“The blessing, the experience, the explosion”: beyond them there is personal experience. With that which cannot be expressed, it is better not to try to express it – because if expression is tried with that which cannot be expressed, it will be misunderstood. So Shiva is silent. He is talking simply of methods, techniques, of how to do it.

But centering is not the end; it is just the path. And why does centering happen, develop, grow into an explosion? Because if much energy is centered at one point, the point will explode. The point is so small and the energy is so great, the point cannot contain it; hence the explosion.

This bulb can contain a particular quantity of electricity. If there is more electricity, the bulb will explode. That is the reason for centering: the more you are centered, the more energy is at your center. The moment there is much energy, the center won’t be able to contain it. It will explode.

So it is scientific; it is just a scientific law. And if the center is not exploding, that means you are still not centered. Once you are centered, immediately the explosion follows. There is no time gap. So if you feel that the explosion is not coming, it means that you are still not focused. Still you do not have one center, still you have many centers, still you are divided, still your energy is dissipated, still your energy is moving out.

When the energy moves out you are just being emptied of energy, dissipated. Ultimately you will become impotent. Really, when death comes you have already died; you are just a dead cell. You have been constantly throwing energy outward – so whatsoever may be the quantity of energy, within a period you will become empty. Outgoing energy means death. You are dying every moment; your energy is being emptied; you are throwing your energy, dissipating it.

They say that even the sun which has been there for millions and millions of years, such a great reservoir of energy, is being emptied constantly. And within four billion years it will die. The sun will die simply because there will be no energy to radiate. Every day it is dying because the rays are carrying its energy toward the boundaries of the universe, if there are any boundaries. The energy is going out.

Only man is capable of transforming and changing the direction of energy. Otherwise death is a natural phenomenon – everything dies. Only man is capable of knowing the immortal, the deathless.

So you can reduce this whole thing into a law. If energy is moving out, death will be the result and you will never know what life means. You can only know a slow dying. You can never feel the intensity of being alive. If energy moves out then death is the automatic result – of anything, whatsoever. If you can change the direction of energy – energy not moving out, but moving in – then a mutation, a transformation happens.

Then this energy coming in becomes centered at one point in you. That point is just near the navel – because really, you are born as a navel. You are connected with your mother at the navel. The life energy of the mother is being poured into you through the navel. And once the navel cord is cut, you are separated from the mother, you become an individual. Before that you are not an individual, just part of your mother.

So real birth takes place when the navel cord is cut. Then the child takes its own life, becomes its own center. That center is bound to be just at the navel, because through the navel the energy comes to the child. That was the connecting link. And still, whether you are aware or not, your navel remains the center.

If energy begins to pour in, if you change the direction of the energy so that it comes in, it will hit the navel. It will go on coming in and become centered at the navel. When it is so much that the navel cannot contain it, that the center cannot contain it any longer, the center explodes. In that explosion, again you are no longer an individual. You were not an individual when you were connected with your mother; again you will not be an individual.

A new birth has taken place. You have become one with the cosmos. Now you do not have any center; you cannot say “I.” Now there is no ego. A Buddha, a Krishna, goes on talking and using the word ‘I’. That is simply formal; they do not have any ego. They are not.

Buddha was dying. The day he was to die, many, many people, disciples, sannyasi, gathered, and they were sad; they were weeping and crying. So Buddha asked, “Why are you weeping?” Someone said, “Because soon you will be no more.”

Buddha laughed and said, “But I have been no more for forty years. I died the day I became enlightened. The center has not been there for forty years. So do not weep, do not be sad. No one is dying now. I am no more! But still the word ‘I’ has to be used even to denote that I am no more.”

Energy moving in is the whole of religion, is what is meant by the religious search. How to move the energy, how to create a total about turn? These methods help. So remember, centering is not samadhi, centering is not the experience. Centering is the door to the experience, and when there is the experience there is no centering. So centering is just a passage.

You are not centered now: you are multi-centered really. That is why I say you are not centered now. When you become centered, there is only one center. Then the energy that has been moving to multi-centers has come back; it is a homecoming. Then you are at your center; then . . . explosion. Again the center is no more, but then you are not multi-centered. Then there is no center at all. You have become one with the cosmos. Then existence and you mean one and the same thing.

For example, an iceberg is floating in the sea. The iceberg has a center of its own. It has a separate individuality; it is separate from the ocean. Deep down it is not separate, because it is nothing but water at a particular degree of temperature. The difference between the ocean water and the iceberg is not in their nature – naturally, they are the same. The difference is only of temperature. And then the sun rises, and the atmosphere becomes hot, and the iceberg begins to melt. Then there is no iceberg: it has melted. Now you cannot find it because there is no individuality, no center in it. It has become one with the ocean.

In you and in Buddha, in those who were crucifying Jesus and in Jesus, in Krishna and in Arjuna, there is no difference in nature. Arjuna is like an iceberg and Krishna is like an ocean. There is no difference in nature. They both are one and the same, but Arjuna has a form, a name – an individual, isolated existence. He feels, “I am.”

Through these methods of centering, the temperature will change, the iceberg will melt, and then there will be no difference. That oceanic feeling is samadhi; that being an iceberg is mind. And to feel oceanic is to be a no-mind.

Centering is just the passage, the point of transformation from which the iceberg will be no more. Before it there was no ocean – only an iceberg. After it there will be no iceberg – only ocean. The oceanic feeling is samadhi: it is to feel oneself one with the whole.

But I am not saying to think oneself one with the whole. You can think, but thinking is before centering; that is not realization. You do not know – you have only heard; you have read. You wish that someday this may happen to you also, but you have not realized. Before centering you can go on thinking, but that thinking is of no use. After centering there is no thinker. You know! It has happened! You are no more; only the ocean is. Centering is the method. Samadhi is the end.

Nothing has been said about what happens in samadhi because nothing can be said. And Shiva is very scientific. He is not interested at all in telling. He is telegraphic; he will not use a single extra word. So he simply hints: “The experience, the blessing, the happening.” Not only this, sometimes he will simply say, “Then.” He will say, “Be centered between two breaths and then.” And then he will stop. Then sometimes he will simply say, “Be in the middle, just in the middle between two extremes, and that.”

These are indications – “That, then, the experience, the blessing, the happening, the explosion.” But then he stops completely. Why? We would like him to say something more.

Two reasons. One: That cannot be explained. Why can it not be explained? There are thinkers – for example, modern positivists, language analysts and others in Europe – who say that which can be experienced can be explained. And they have a point to make. They say if you can experience it, then why cannot you tell of it. After all, what is an experience? You have understood it, so why can you not make it understood for others? So they say that if there is any experience, then it can be expressed. And if you cannot express it, it shows simply that there is no experience. Then you are a muddlehead – confused, blurred. And if you cannot even express it, then there is no possibility that you will be able to experience.

Because of this standpoint, they say religion is all hokum. Why can you not express it if you can say you have experienced? Their point appeals to many, but their argument is baseless. Leave aside religious experiences, ordinary experiences also cannot be explained and expressed – very simple experiences.

I have a pain in my head, and if you have never experienced a headache, I cannot explain to you what a headache means. That doesn’t mean that I am muddleheaded; that doesn’t mean that I am only thinking and I am not experiencing. The headache is there. I experience it in its totality, in its full painfulness. But if you have not experienced a headache, it cannot be explained, it cannot be expressed to you. If you also have experienced it, then of course there is no problem, it can be expressed.

Buddha’s difficulty is that he has to talk with non-buddhas – not non-Buddhists, because non- Buddhists can also be buddhas. Jesus is a non-Buddhist, but he is a buddha. Because Buddha is to communicate with those who have not experienced, there is a difficulty. You do not know what a headache is. There are many who have not known headaches. They have only heard the word; it means nothing to them.

You can talk with a blind man about light, but nothing is conveyed. He hears the word ‘light’, he hears the explanation. He can understand the whole theory of light, but still the word ‘light’ conveys nothing to him. Unless he can experience, communication is impossible. So note it: communication is possible only if two persons are communicating who have had the same experience.

We are able to communicate in ordinary life because our experiences are similar. But even then, if one is going to split hairs then there will be difficulties. I say the sky is blue and you also say the sky is blue, but how are we to decide that my experience of blue and your experience of blue is the same? There is no possible way to decide.

I may be looking at one shade of blue and you may be looking at a different shade of blue, but what I am looking at inside, what I am experiencing, cannot be conveyed to you. I can simply say “blue.” You also say “blue,” but blue has a thousand shades – and not only shades, ‘blue’ has thousands of meanings. In my pattern of mind, blue may mean one thing. To you it may mean something else, because blue is not the meaning. The meaning is always in the pattern of the mind. So even in common experiences it is difficult to communicate.

oreover, there are experiences which are of the beyond. For example, someone has fallen in love. He experiences something. His whole life is at stake, but he cannot explain what has happened to him, what is happening to him. He can weep, he can sing, he can dance; these are indications that something is happening in him. But what is happening in him? When love happens to someone, what is happening really? And love is not very uncommon. It happens to everyone in some way or other. But still, we have not been able to express yet what happens inside.

There are persons who feel love as a fever, as a sort of disease. Rousseau says that youth is not the peak of human life, because youth is prone to the disease called love. Unless one becomes so old that love loses all meaning, mind remains muddled and puzzled. So wisdom is possible only in very, very old age. Love will not allow you to be wise – that is his feeling.

There are others who may feel differently. Those who are really wise will become silent about love. They will not say anything – because the feeling is so infinite, so deep, that language is bound to betray it. And if it is expressed then one feels guilty, because one can never do justice to the feeling of the infinite. So one remains silent: the deeper the experience, the less the possibility of expression.

Buddha remained silent about God not because there is no God. And those who are very much vocal about God really show they have no experience. Buddha remained silent. Whenever he would go to any town, he would declare, “Please, do not ask anything about God. You can ask anything, but not about God.”

Scholars, pundits, who had no experience really but only knowledge, started talking about Buddha and creating rumors, saying, “He is silent because he doesn’t know. If he knows then why will he not say?” And Buddha would laugh. That laughter could be understood only by very few.

If love cannot be expressed, then how can God be expressed? Then any expression is harmful – that is one thing. That is why Shiva is silent about the experience. He goes to the point from where a finger can be used as an indication – “Then, that, the experience” – and then he becomes silent.

The second reason is: even if it can be expressed in a certain way, even if it can be expressed only Partially . . . Even if it cannot be expressed, really, then too some parallels can be created to help. But those too Shiva is not using, and there is a reason. It is because our minds are so greedy that whenever something is said about that experience the mind clings to it. And then the mind forgets the method and remembers only the experience, because method needs effort – a long effort which is sometimes tedious, sometimes dangerous. A long sustained effort is needed.

So we forget about the method. We remember the result and we go on imagining, wishing, desiring the result. And one can fool oneself very easily. One can imagine that the result has been achieved.

Someone was here a few days before. He is a sannyasin – an old man, a very old man. He took sannyas thirty years ago; now he is near seventy. He came to me and he said,  ‘I have come to make some inquiries, to know something.”

So I asked him, “What do you want to know?”

Suddenly he changed. He said, “No, not to know really – just to meet you, because whatsoever can be known I have known already.”

For thirty years he has been imagining, desiring – desiring bliss, divine experiences – and now, at this late age, he has become weak and death is near. Now he is creating hallucinations that he has experienced. So I told him, “If you have experienced, then keep silent. Be here with me for a few moments because then there is no need to talk.”

Then he became restless. He said, “Okay! Then suppose that I have not experienced. Then tell me something.”

So I told him, “There is no possibility with me to suppose anything. Either you have known or you have not known,” I said. “So be clear about it. If you have known, then keep quiet. Be here for a few moments and then go. If you have not known, then be clear. Then tell me so.”

Then he was puzzled. He had come to inquire about some methods. Then he said, “Really, I have not experienced, but I have been thinking so much about aham brahmasi – I am the brahman – that sometimes I forget that I have only been thinking. I have repeated it so much, day and night, for thirty years continuously, that sometimes I completely forget that I have not known this. It is just a borrowed saying.”

It is difficult to remember what is knowledge and what is experience. They get confused; they get mingled and mixed. And it is very easy to feel that your knowledge has become your experience. The human mind is so deceptive, so cunning, that that is possible. That is another reason why Shiva has remained silent about the experience. He will not say anything about it. He goes on talking about methods, remaining completely silent about the result. You cannot be deceived by him.

That is one of the reasons why this book, one of the most significant of books, has remained altogether unknown. This Vigyana Bhairava Tantra is one of the most significant books in the world. No Bible, no Veda, no Gita is so significant, but it has remained completely unknown. The reason? It contains only simple methods without any possibility for your greed to cling to the result. The mind wants to cling to the result. The mind is not interested in the method; it is interested in the end result. And if you can bypass the method and reach the result, the mind will be extremely happy.

Someone was asking me, “Why so many methods? Kabir has said, ‘sahaj samadhi bhali – be spontaneous.’ Spontaneous ecstasy is good, so there is no need of methods.”

I told him, “If you have achieved sahaj samadhi – spontaneous ecstasy – then of course no method is useful; there is no need. Why have you come here?”

He said, “I have not achieved yet, but I feel that sahaj – the spontaneous – is better.”

“But why do you feel that the spontaneous is better?” I said. Because no method is suggested, the mind feels good that you have nothing to do – and without doing, you can have everything!

Because of this Zen has become a craze in the West – because Zen says, achieve it effortlessly; there is no need of effort. Zen is right; there is no need for an effort. But remember, to achieve this point of no-effort you will need a long, long effort. To achieve a point where no effort is needed, to achieve a point where you can remain in non-doing, a long effort will be needed. But the superficial conclusion that Zen says no effort is needed has become very appealing in the West. If no effort is needed then the mind says: this is the right thing, because you can do it without doing anything. But no one can do it.

Suzuki, who made Zen known in the West, has done a service and also a disservice. And the disservice will remain for a longer period. He was a very authentic man, one of the most authentic men of this century, and for his whole life he struggled to carry the message of Zen to the West. And alone, with his own effort, he made it known in the West. And now there is a craze; there are Zen friends all over the West. Nothing appeals like Zen now.

But the point is missed. The appeal has come only because Zen says no method is needed, no effort is needed. You do not have to do anything; spontaneously it flowers.

This is right – but you are not spontaneous, so it will never flower in you. To be spontaneous . . . It looks absurd and contradictory, because for you to be spontaneous many methods are needed to purify you, to make you innocent so that you can be spontaneous. Otherwise you cannot be spontaneous in anything.

This Vigyana Bhairava Tantra was translated into English by Paul Reps. He has written a very beautiful book, Zen Flesh, Zen Bones, and just in the appendix he included this book Vigyana Bhairava Tantra. The whole book is concerned with Zen; just in the appendix he added this book also, the one hundred and twelve methods, and he called it a pre-Zen writing. Many Zen followers didn’t like this because they said, “Zen says no effort is needed, and this book is concerned only with effort. This book is concerned only with methods, and Zen says no method, no effort is needed. So it is anti-Zen, not pre-Zen.” Superficially they are right, but deep down they are not, because to achieve a spontaneous being one has to travel a long way.

One of Gurdjieff’s disciples, Ouspensky, used to say, whenever someone would come to him to ask about the path, “We don’t know anything about the path. We only teach about some footpaths which lead to the path. The path is not known to us.” Do not think that you are already on the path. Even the path is far away. From where you are, from that point, even the path is far away. So first you have to reach to the path. Ouspensky was a very humble man, and it is very difficult to be religious and to be humble – very, very difficult, because once you begin to feel that you know, the head goes mad. He would always say, “We don’t know anything about the path. It is very far away, and there is no need just now to discuss it.” Wherever you are, first you have to create a link, a small bridge, a footpath which will lead you to the path.

Spontaneity – sahaj samadhi yoga – is very far away from you. In the place where you are, you are totally artificial, cultivated and cultured. Nothing is spontaneous – nothing, I say, is spontaneous. When nothing is spontaneous in your life, how can religion be spontaneous? When nothing is spontaneous, even love is not spontaneous. Even love is a bargain, even love is a calculation, even love is an effort. Then nothing can be spontaneous. And then to explode spontaneously into the cosmos is impossible.

From the situation you are in, from that situation it is impossible. First you will have to throw away all your artificiality, all your false attitudes, all your cultivated conventions, all your prejudices. Only then will a spontaneous happening be possible. These methods will help you to come to a point from where nothing is needed to be done – just your being is enough. But mind can deceive. And mind easily deceives, because then it can get consolation.

Shiva never talks about any result, just methods. Remember this emphasis. Do something, so that a moment may be possible when nothing is needed, when your central being can just dissolve into the cosmos. But that has to be achieved. Zen’s appeal is for the wrong reasons, and the same is true for Krishnamurti, because he says no yoga is needed, no method is needed. Really, he says there is no method of meditation. He is right.

He is right, but Shiva says these one hundred and twelve methods of meditation are there, and Shiva is also right. And as far as you are concerned, Shiva is more right. And if you have to choose between Krishnamurti and Shiva, then choose Shiva. Krishnamurti is of no use to you. Even this can be said to help you – that Krishnamurti is absolutely wrong. Remember, I say to help you. And he is harmful. That too I say to help you, because if you get into his argument you will not achieve samadhi. You will achieve only one conclusion – that no method is needed. And that is dangerous. For you method is needed!

There comes a moment when no method is needed, but that moment has not come for you yet. And before that moment, to know about something that is ahead is dangerous. That is why Shiva is silent. He will not say anything of the future, of what will happen. He simply sticks to you, to what you are and what is to be done with you. Krishnamurti goes on talking in terms which cannot be understood by you.

The logic can be felt. The logic is right; it is beautiful. It will be good if you can remember the logic of Krishnamurti. He says that if you are doing some method, then who is doing that method? The mind is doing it. And how can any method done by mind dissolve mind? Rather, on the contrary, it will strengthen it more; it will strengthen your mind more. It will become a conditioning, it will be false.

So meditation is spontaneous; you cannot do anything about it. What can you do about love? Can you practice any method for how to love? If you practice, then your love will be false. It happens, it cannot be practiced. If even love cannot be practiced, how can prayer be practiced? How can meditation be practiced?

The logic is exactly, absolutely right – but not for you, because by listening to this logic continuously you will be conditioned by this logic. And those who have been listening to Krishnamurti for forty years are the most conditioned persons I have come across. They say there is no method, and still they are nowhere.

I say, “You have understood there is no method and you do not practice any method, but has the spontaneity flowered in you?” They say, “No!”

And if I tell them, “Then practice some method,” immediately their conditioning comes in. They say, “There is no method.”

They have not been practicing any method, and samadhi has not happened. And if you tell them, “Then try some method,” they say there is no method. So they are in a dilemma. They have not moved an inch, and the reason is that they have been told something which was not for them.

It is like teaching a small child about sex. You can go on teaching, but you are saying something which is as yet meaningless for the child. And your teaching will be dangerous because you are conditioning his mind. It is not his need; he is not concerned with it. He doesn’t know what sex means because his glands are still not functioning; his body is still not sexual. His energy has not yet moved biologically to the sex center, and you are talking to him. Because he has ears, do you think that anything can be taught to him? Because he can nod his head, do you think you can teach him anything?

You can teach, and your teaching can become dangerous and harmful. Sex is not an inquiry for him, it has not become a problem for him. He has not reached that point of maturity where sex becomes significant. Wait! When he begins to inquire, when he matures and when he asks questions, then tell him. And never tell more than he can understand, because that more will become a burden on his head. It is the same with the phenomenon of meditation.

You can be taught only about methods, not about results – that is taking a jump. And without getting a foothold on the method, taking the jump is simply a cerebral affair, a mental affair. And then you will always miss the method.

It is like small children doing arithmetic. They can always go to the back of the book and can know the answer. The answer is there; at the back of the book, the answers are given. They can look at the question, then they can go to the back and know the answer. And once a child knows the answer it is very difficult for him to learn the method, because there seems to be no need. When he already knows the answer, there is no need.

And really, he will do the whole thing in reverse order. Then through any false, pseudo method he will arrive at the answer. He knows the real thing, he knows the answer, so he can arrive at the answer by just creating a false method. And this happens so much in religion that it seems, as far as religion is concerned, everyone is just doing what children do.

The answer is not good for you. The question is there, the method is there, and the answer must be reached by you. No one else should give you the answer. The real teachers do not help you to know the answer before the process is done, they simply help you to go through the process. In fact, even if you have known somehow, even if you have stolen some answer from somewhere, they will say that this is wrong. It may not be wrong, but they will say, “This is wrong. Throw this – it is not needed.” They will debar you from knowing the answer before you really come to know it. That is why no answer is given.

Shiva’s beloved, Devi, has asked him questions. He is giving simple methods. The question is there, the method is there. The answer is left for you to work out, to live out.

So remember, centering is the method, not the result. The result is cosmic, oceanic experience. There is no center then.

-Osho

From The Book of Secrets, Discourse #14, 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.

In the Fire of Dancing Stillness

A review of In the Fire of Dancing Stillness – Reflections with Vimala Thakar

A film by Renata Keller

Renata Keller introduces the life and teachings of Vimala Thakar in an extraordinarily accessible way, so very much in tune with Vimala herself.  The opening scene sets the stage for the intertwining of the elements and nature as both background and enhancement.  Waves form, play, and disappear. The boatman intently watches as he punts his craft along the shore, and soaring over this peaceful scene is the crystal-clear voice of Vimala.

Renata uses a delicate touch to tell Vimala’s story, guided by profound gratitude, for Vimala recognized her longing for wholeness, and by so doing changed her life.  This tribute, made some twenty years after this meeting, interweaves interviews with Vimala’s colleagues and friends; an exploration of places she worked and taught; and powerful excerpts from those teachings. Interspersing these scenes is the slow evolution of a chalk image into the goddess Durga.

Vimala is described as a philosopher, spiritual revolutionary, and social activist.  She engaged in land distribution, persuading rich landowners to donate part of their land to landless laborers so all could live in dignity.  She reached out to, and taught, girls and women, encouraging their independence and development of self-respect.  She explains her work as taking care of suffering at all levels.

Vimala’s capacity for love and light extends far beyond her social activism.  J. Krishnamurti invited her to visit him for some healing sessions after a car accident severely damaged one of her ears.  These meetings engendered an upheaval in her consciousness.  Vimalaji wrote, “Something within has been let loose. It can’t stand any frontiers. The invasion of a new awareness irresistible and uncontrollable has swept everything away. The freshness and awareness keep one ever alert, ever keen and ever insecure. Though the journey has come to an end, I have not arrived.  Perhaps there is nowhere to arrive.  Perhaps there is no static destination.  It seems to me that life is its own purpose. Life is its own direction.  Life is dynamic, and those who live are on an eternal voyage.”  Krishnamurti strongly encouraged Vimala to start giving talks from her understanding.

This movie exudes the vast love and concern Vimala felt for the whole of humanity, the global family we are becoming as so much of our way of living is changing.  Vimalaji has tremendous hope in the new generation, in all of us, that though we live in turbulent times, such challenges create the possibility to “emanate out of our being a new human culture” based on truth, love and compassion.

Vimalaji explains how we have become separate from the sacred in life due to the way we live apart from nature, apart from each other, interacting with the manmade. Vimala points out how so much of what is considered human can now be done by artificial intelligence; it has become memory, thought, and even feeling.  She asks, is there something that is untransferable, something that artificial intelligence cannot do?  And this is the search.  What is it that cannot be transferred to a machine?  Let us find out! And this dovetails into another frequent theme.  How can we relate to life without the interference of the mind? Can we learn to look at life in a fresh way born of silence, from emptiness, in touch with the sacred?  Vimala encourages us all to experiment, dive within, disinfect ourselves of knowledge, and find out.

And the threads of this tapestry – scenes of flowing rivers and still lakes, a bird aloft in the vast sky, the beauty of trees, of humanity – the interrelatedness of it all woven together with exquisite music, and the patient creation of the goddess Durga from chalk; and shortly after completion, the destruction.

-Amido

In the sanctuary of silence
Beauty comes to life.
On the altar of silent beauty
Humility plays with life.
In the light of dancing humility
Innocence opens itself.
Freedom is the blossom
Love is the perfume
Compassion its graceful way of walking.

-Vimala Thakar

Download or watch the video: In the Fire of Dancing Stillness.

Here is a link to explore more from Vimala Thakar.

Why Should I not be Disturbed? – J. Krishnamurti

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

– J. Krishnamurti

From The First and Last Freedom, Question 13

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.

Worlds Beyond Thought – Albert Blackburn

The following is an excerpt from a conversation between Albert Blackburn  and Gabriele, his wife.

Albert Blackburn:  Can thought go beyond?

Gabriele:  How can it? And what can go beyond? How can one go beyond?

A:  A new factor must obviously be introduced in order to transcend the thought process; and once again, we should be able to go into it right from this present moment.  Does anything exist in this present moment that is not a part of thought, and that is not a part of our memory bank and ego?

G:  I would say awareness, perception, and the factual things we are surrounded by.

A:  I think that you’re right.  I feel that perception is something beyond thought, because perception is inherent in every living creature in the world.  Every living creature has perception and is able to use perception within its own particular field of consciousness.

G:  Yes.

A:  I think the problem that exists is that we have identified ourselves with perception.  We say we’re perceiving, or we’re feeling, or we’re smelling, or we’re doing.  I think these are all ideas because from a factual point of view there is only seeing, there is only doing, there is only feeling, there is only smelling, there is only hearing; it is only an idea that we are seeing, we are hearing, we are smelling, we are feeling these things.  I believe that each person has to explore this themselves, and see if it is true; does perception exist beyond our personal ideas about it?

To me, it is a very real fact that perception is outside my field of consciousness.  It is completely separate from the thought process.  When my mind is quiet, there is complete perception; there is no fragmentation due to my personal identification with one object.

G:  But the moment I say that I am aware of that beautiful sunset, I bring in my ego, or I bring in the ‘I’ of thought.  I create a memory so that tomorrow I can say, “Yesterday I saw a beautiful sunset.”

A:  That’s right; in other words, we take a mental picture of something the minute we identify it and say, “I have seen it,” or “I am seeing it.”  I must remember it because it is a beautiful picture and I want to put it into my photographic album so that tomorrow I can drag it out and compare it to something else that I have seen, or so that I can tell you about it.

G:  That’s how we generate our own personal body of knowledge. 

A:  It’s also a matter of communication. We can’t communicate with another person without using words and ideas.  Communication on the physical level has to be through the field of consciousness, doesn’t it?

G:  Yes.

A:  I can communicate to you things that I have experienced, or things that I’m experiencing at the present time.  I can do it through words, or I can do it through memory, but I have to use the field of human consciousness.  I have to use the values, the words, and everything else that we both understand in order to get the idea across to you.

But your perception of an idea doesn’t have to involve the field of consciousness. A sudden understanding or a sudden knowing may occur inside of you when you hear me talking about it or describing it.  And even though I’m using my conditioning to describe it, you don’t have to use your conditioning to understand it.  That’s the point.

G:  I can use now-consciousness to understand it.

A:  Right!  This is very important, because it creates an entirely new situation.  In other words, you or I or anyone else, who is endeavoring to communicate a certain idea or a certain insight has to use accepted grammatical forms in order to be understood.  But the holistic understanding of the other person has to lie outside of the field of human consciousness.  If the person who is listening is understanding or interpreting the words in a mechanical way only, then that person’s understanding is only on the verbal level; it doesn’t go any deeper and it doesn’t affect the person’s actions.  For your actions in life to be really affected at the gut level, you have to understand things outside of the field of your personal conditioning. You can’t be caught by any of the words that you hear.  You can’t bring up something from your memory bank or bring up some photograph that you have personally taken, some memory, and have understanding take place.  The minute you catch yourself interpreting something in any way at all – going back to your memory bank in any way at all – drop it.  In dropping the memory, you are open again and free of your conditioning.  Once free, understanding can take place at a deep level, and this can really change your life.

This is why Krishnaji had such difficulty in communicating with the people who listened to him; most of them were interpreting the words that he was using.  They were mired down by the ideas that were evoked in their minds by the words that he used, and they made no impression on them at a deep level.  Consequently, there was no understanding.  They would say, “I understand what Krishnamurti is talking about, it is very plain he’s talking about,” but there was no inner revolution in their understanding of life.

G:  So it became another accumulation of ideas.

A:  Exactly, there was no inner revolution.  The inner revolution can only take place outside of the field of consciousness.  There has to be a listening, not you listening, there has to be a listening without ‘you’ in the picture.  And when there is that listening, then what is heard is not being interpreted, it is not being analyzed, and it is not being filtered through your conditioning.  In that, there’s a holistic understanding which affects you at a deep level, and changes your life, and brings about this inner revolution that Krishnaji was talking about.

G:  That’s right.

A:  I think that is the whole secret of it.

G:  Yes.  So this perception, this awareness is necessary.  If one is in a state of now-consciousness, then what is beyond that?  What is beyond man’s creation, beyond man’s whole field of the known?  What happens?  Let us go into that now.

A:  Well, the world of nature is beyond; understanding, love, affection, attention, compassion, beauty, and all the so-called virtues are beyond; everything that humanity has ever dreamed about possessing, but has never really possessed except as a name or an idea, is beyond human consciousness.  And it is not something that can’t be touched at any time, because what is beyond human consciousness (as we have said before) is the present moment. Thus beauty can be touched in the present moment if I’m not in the picture, ‘I’ as an idea.  Affection can be touched in the present moment; love can be touched in the present moment; understanding can be touched.  All of the things we have just named can be touched in the present moment.

G:  Yes.

A:  It is so simple everybody passes it by, because most of us expect a complicated answer.  You have to experiment and discover for yourself the simple beauty of this approach to life.

G:  It is so direct.

A:  Absolutely direct; direct perception; direct action.

G:  So how does one wake up?  How does one stay in the now?

A:  Well, let us start in this present moment again, because this is the beginning point.  Every step, every question has to begin with this present moment.  Would you ask the question, “How can I sit in this chair?”

G:  No, I guess I know how.

A:  “How can I put my feet on the floor?”  “How can I put my two hands together?”  “How can I look at another person?”  You know, it is so simple. There’s no how to it for us.  So the question is not how to do something in a positive way, but rather what prevents us from doing it? That should be the question.  What prevents me from being aware that I’m sitting in this chair?  What prevents me from being aware that I have my hands clasped together and my thumbs are moving together against each other?  What prevents me from being aware of this?

G:  All that we’ve been talking about.

A:  Right; thought.

G:  Thought.

A:  In other words, identification with a certain object or a certain idea that was recalled through the memory process, a retrieval from our personal memory bank. That’s what prevents us from being constantly attentive and aware of what is happening in the present moment.

G:  Then without awareness there is no true love, no beauty, no compassion, no affection, none of those things that are beyond thought.

A:  They don’t exist, if I’m thinking.

G:  No.

A:  They can’t.  Each one can exist as an idea; I can name each one as an abstraction.  But it is just an idea, it is not the thing itself.  The emotions themselves, which are part of the holistic feeling about life which contains all of those so-called virtues, are there every moment.  But we’re simply not aware of them because we’re busy thinking about some picayune idea that has nothing to do with them at all.

Of course, you have to use thought in order to make plans.  If you have a certain insight into what has to be done this afternoon, or tomorrow, or whatever, you have to use thought.  You have to use the creative planning capacity of your brain in order to bring it about.  But most of the time we’re not in that situation; most of the time we could sit back and enjoy these other things that we’ve been talking about as possibilities.  We could enjoy them as facts, and not just as ideas.

G:  In other words, I don’t see nature when I’m thinking.

A:  Of course not.

G:  I can see that that’s a tree, or a bird, and so on, but I don’t really see it, feel it, or perceive it when the mind is chattering

A:  The minute you name something you don’t perceive it, either.  You perceive the tree, and the minute you name the tree, the perception is gone.  In the act of naming, the name you are giving the tree becomes superimposed between you and the tree.  The same phenomenon takes place in every phase of our life.

G:  Seeing the beauty of what we’re saying, and the necessity of it, and perhaps experiencing it – how does it come about?

A:  I think we should start once again with something that we can understand.  Obviously, thought cannot wake itself up.  I consider thinking a form of dreaming.  (People call it thinking, you know, but actually it is day-dreaming!)  Thought can’t wake itself up.  If you’re in the middle of a dream at night, you normally can’t wake yourself up immediately.  However, there are certain techniques that the occultists use to trick themselves into waking up in the middle of a dream; they then go on with the dream in a different way, objectively.

G:  They’re experimenting with this now in dream labs.

A:  There’s the possibility of doing this.  There’s also the possibility of waking yourself up and becoming aware of the fact that you have been thinking a certain train of thought.  Then, instead of continuing that particular thought (which, from your point of view, might be a negative thought), you continue in the thought process by substituting what you consider to be a more positive, more acceptable thought.

G:  That’s still the same old thing.  It is still using memory to trick yourself into thinking in another way.

A:  So both ways are really tricks of the mind, aren’t they?

G:  Yes.

A:  So, if thought cannot wake itself up, if thought cannot bring itself to an end, if thought cannot extricate itself from the field of human consciousness – which is the origin of thought in the first place – then something else has to take place, doesn’t it?  Another factor must come into play to break the impasse.  Earlier, we came to the realization that perception and awareness are outside of human consciousness.  So what is it that will wake us up?  That was the question you asked.

G:  Just now you said thought can’t achieve its own end.  What do you mean by that?  You can’t think yourself to the end of thought?

A:  No, there has to be some outside agency, doesn’t there?  There has to be some factor outside of my conditioned response.

G:  You said that thought can’t stop itself.  You can’t sit there and say, “I’m going to meditate and stop thinking?”

A:  No, because consciously stopping a negative type of thought, for instance, and turning it into a positive thought, is still continuing the thought process.  Some of the so-called New-Thought organizations do this type of mental manipulation; they tell you to think positively instead of negatively.  It is just a trick of the mind.  In other words, they continue to experience the same dream, only they’ve edited it now, and they turn it into a positive dream instead of a negative one.

But this doesn’t answer your question, and I think it is an intriguing question.  I like to use analogies, because I think analogies are really another way of talking about harmonics on another level.  For example, you yourself have thoroughly studied and used your mind and your mental capacity to its utmost to determine all of the facts concerning a certain way of living.  You’ve gone as far as you can go in creatively thinking about the subject, and have used your mental capacity to find out everything related to the healing work that you do.  Is that true?

G:  Yes, it is.

A:  Then suppose that somebody calls you this afternoon and tells you that your assistance is required tomorrow morning at 8:00, that the capacity that you’ve developed as a ‘healer’ is needed to help someone.  You realize the value of doing this, you see that life has chosen you to do this and that you have the capacity to do it, and you have a feeling that you can perhaps help this other person.  Are you going to need an alarm clock to wake you in time to be ready for your 8 o’clock appointment tomorrow morning?  Or are you going to wake up spontaneously?

G:  I’ll wake up by myself.

A:  You’ll wake up.  You won’t need an alarm clock.  You may set one just as a safety measure because you may not be completely sure you’ll wake up, but you will always awaken.  Just as I’d wake up if somebody called me and wanted to talk about my favorite subject, now-consciousness.  I would wake up; I wouldn’t need an alarm clock because I’m intensely interested in the subject, just as you are intensely interested in what you are doing, too.  We can’t say it is ‘you’ waking yourself up, or ‘me’ waking myself up.  It is the interest that we have in the things with which we are involved that wakes us up.  That interest is part of the life-force, the vitality or energy of life, that awakens us.  Isn’t that true?

G:  Yes, one can hardly wait to get started.

A:  Well, if this is true on the physical level, why doesn’t it apply on other levels as well?  Wouldn’t it apply to waking up from a thought pattern?

G:  It is part of that inner intention, that interest.

A:  Suppose that I have gone into this deeply enough to see the value and the logic of waking up.  I realize that most of the time I identify with just one fragment of each moment.  I can see the potential danger in this limited response to unforeseen challenges and am really serious in my desire to change.  I see that I will be unable to cope adequately with emergencies that may come up as long as I’m plugged into only one channel.  Suppose that you have told me all of this, and I’ve looked into it and understood logically at least that what you say must be true.  I may not have felt it deeply because I have not experienced it myself, but I see that life must be much richer; there must be a thousand things out there of which I’m unaware.

My inquiry and deep interest opens the door for insight.  There is freedom from the known, because I clearly see that thought cannot make a breakthrough.  Another factor, outside of myself, must become operative.  In other words, I can’t consciously awaken myself from sleep, nor can I consciously bring about awareness.

Perceiving the validity of these observations gives me the inner intention to wake up, and this inner incentive accomplishes what thought cannot do.  Thought can’t extricate itself from the trap it has created.  It is the sincere acknowledgement of this impasse that opens the door for insight to occur.

G:  That’s exactly it.

A:  If I’ve reached that stage mentally, and have really pushed it and am really interested, my inquiry and my interest are going to be the very things that wake me up.

G:  And then you carry that through into action.  When someone comes to you with a problem, you approach it with an attitude of ‘I’ don’t know.  For example, I can’t approach the healing process with any knowledge that I have; but if I stay away from thought and just ‘tune’ into the energy that is there, that exists in that same state of perception, the healing may occur.

A:  Exactly.

G:  And if you take that approach when someone comes to you with a question, rather than approaching it from the standpoint of what you’ve already written or thought or experienced, then real communication may occur.  Or you may at least say something important to that person; whether they can comprehend it in the same way or not is not your responsibility.

A:  You are not personally providing the answer.  If you are open, if your cup is empty, and life is pouring information into you moment by moment through the medium of insight, then you are not consciously saying something designed to engender a particular reaction in the other person.  If you have the idea that you are going to effect a certain result, it is a product of thought

G:  That’s right.  ‘I’ am not a healer, ‘I’ can’t heal anybody.

A:  You will spontaneously and intuitively say the right thing, with no idea at all as to why you are saying it.  And it is life that engenders the understanding in the other person that might change the course of that person’s life.  But you are not doing it to bring about a specific result; that is the important point

People thought that Krishnaji deliberately said certain things to them personally that were designed to elicit particular results, because specific results did occur as a consequence of what he said.  But I don’t believe that he himself had any intention of doing that; he said what he did because at that moment it was the right thing to say.  It was life that engendered an understanding in the listener.

G:  Yes, because that energy, that life, that love that comes through, is then actually working in that state beyond thought.  And that is the state of pure insight and pure compassion, and in that state, healing and understanding can take place.

What do you think Krishnaji meant by saying that you must follow a thought to its end?

A:  If I’ve suddenly awakened to the fact that my mind has been identifying with a certain train of thought, there are two directions in which I can go, aren’t there?  Usually that direction is forward; I use thought and imagination to conclude the particular thought that I had been involved in at the time I awakened.  In other words I analyze my thought, interpret the thought that I’ve just had, and follow it through to a conclusion of some kind.  That would involve the thinking process, wouldn’t it?

G:  Yes.

A:  In other words, it would be impossible to proceed from the point at which you have awakened without using thought.

G:  So Krishnaji couldn’t have meant that, could he?

A:  No.  Let’s go back to the analogy of sleeping.  When you wake up in the morning, there’s an immediate awareness of the fact that you are in the bed where you went to sleep (if everything is normal).  An awareness of how you went to asleep at night, of how you prepared yourself for bed, of all of the events leading up to it – all of this comes to you in a flash when you wake up in the morning.  You don’t have to think about it; in a flash you see the whole backward track.  You even picture some of the dreams that your mind was involved in during the night.

In the same way, at a different and higher harmonic level, you can wake up or suddenly become aware of the fact that you’ve been involved in thought.  Immediately, instead of proceeding, instead of analyzing and editing the thought, and all of the rest of the process, be aware of your tendency to do this, and the minute that you start doing it, drop it.  In that dropping there is a clear seeing of the whole backward path.  You see the train of thought that you were involved with and how it originated.  You see the memory that triggered it; you see the life challenge that triggered it – you see the name, or the person, or whatever it was triggered that particular train of thought.  You can then perceive where the thought originated, how it started in your mind, how you were conditioned to react to a particular thing, and how you programmed yourself to respond in a particular way.  And then the thought can even be traced back into all kinds of other little channels back to the actual origin of the memory itself.  When all of that is clearly seen, it dissipates, it withers way.  It is no more, and you will not be troubled by that particular memory again

G:  Are you saying that it diminishes, that the content goes out of it, as well as the feelings associated with it?

A:  The feelings go out of it, the life goes out of it and it shrivels up in the light of understanding.  It withers away in the light of awareness that you focus upon the backward path leading to the whole train of thought.  But if you make the mistake of going forward, you give it new energy, you give it new life, you give it new continuity; and then it keeps coming up over and over again, and there’s no end to it.  It becomes a neurotic response

G:  And there is no end to it at all.

A:  So that’s what I feel that Krishnaji meant when he spoke of following thought to an end.  He knew that if you followed it forward it would lead to a dead end, that you’d never escape it, and that you would discover for yourself that you could never escape it.

G:  Is following thought to an end different then from analysis?

A:  Oh yes, completely; analysis is going forward with thought.  Analysis is going forward, but also looking back while you’re going ahead and analyzing the thing that you thought you were thinking about.  Analysis is part of the thought process.

Now-Consciousness is the world beyond thought, where there is love compassion beauty, and a holistic unity with all of life.

-Albert Blackburn

Excerpt from Worlds Beyond Thought, Conversations on Now-Consciousness, p.102 – 117

Sheela was not a Stargazer – Osho

Krishnamurti does not want an organization – still his secretary, Rajgopal, betrayed him, and took possession of his finances and his archives. You approve of institutions and at times permit organization where necessary. In spite of due care, a similar situation to Krishnamurti’s with Rajgopal has happened with you and Sheela. Does this mean that in the very nature of human beings such a situation cannot be avoided? Please explain.

A similar situation has not happened. Sheela has done much good, ninety-nine percent good. The whole credit of keeping all the commune together, of creating houses for five thousand people with all the modern facilities, with central air conditioning – I don’t think any city is totally air-conditioned as you are – of giving you the best food possible…. She has done immense good to you, and you should be grateful for it. The credit goes to her. Only one percent she missed, and that seems to be natural to human nature, particularly for people like Sheela.

Sheela had no spiritual aspirations. Seeing that she has no potential, at least in this life…. And this was my impression on the very first day she entered my room in 1970 – that she was utterly materialistic, but very practical, very pragmatic, strong-willed, could be used in the beginning days of the commune… because the people who are spiritually-oriented are stargazers.

I am reminded of an astrologer in Greece who was the best astrologer, and he used to go out of Athens in the night to watch the stars. One night he fell into a well because he was looking at the stars, so he could not see the well. Hearing the sound, a woman who lived nearby threw a rope and somehow managed to pull him out.

The astrologer was very grateful, and he said, “You have done so much for me – you have saved my life. Perhaps you don’t know that I am the greatest astrologer in the whole country, and perhaps in the whole world. Kings come to see me, and they have to wait because my appointments are already fixed for weeks ahead. My fee is very high, but I will see you and predict your future without any fee. Tomorrow you can come, and I will cancel the appointment: tomorrow one of the kings is coming to see me, but you are more valuable to me.”

Sheela was not a stargazer. The reason I had appointed her my secretary was basically this: she was not interested in meditation, she was interested in making roads, houses – which meditators would need. And she did her job well. Just one percent she took advantage of the opportunity, because I was not available to you.

-Osho

From From Bondage to Freedom, Discourse #18

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.

Find Out What Your Path Is – Osho

Will you please tell us why Krishnamurti is against techniques, whereas Shiva is for so many techniques. 

Being against techniques is simply a technique. Not only Krishnamurti is using that technique, it has been used many times before. It is one of the oldest techniques, nothing is new about it.

Two thousand years ago Bodhidharma used it. He introduced into China what is now known as Chan or Zen-Buddhism. He was a Hindu monk, a monk from India. He believed in no-technique. Zen is based on no-technique. Zen masters say that if you do something you will miss, because who will do? You? You are the disease, and out of you nothing else can be born. Who will make the effort? Your mind, and your mind has to be destroyed – and you cannot destroy the mind itself with help from the mind. Whatsoever you do, your mind will be more strengthened.

So Zen says there is no technique, no method, there is no scripture and there can be no guru. But the beauty is that Zen has created the greatest of gurus and Zen masters have written the best scriptures in the world. And through Zen thousands and thousands of people attained nirvana – but they say there is no technique.

So it has to be understood that no-technique is really one of the foundational techniques. The emphasis is on “no” so that your mind is negated. Mind can have two attitudes – yes or no. These are the two possibilities, the two alternatives, just as they are in everything. No is the feminine and yes is the male. So you can use the method of no, or you can use the method of yes. If you follow the method of yes, then there are many methods – but you have to say yes and there can be many yes’s. If you follow no, then there are not many methods, only one, because there cannot be many no’s.

Look at this point: there are so many religions in the world, so many types of theists. There are at least three hundred religions in existence right now. So theism has three hundred temples, churches, scriptures. But there is only one type of atheism, there cannot be two. Atheists have no sects. When you say there is no God, the thing is finished. You cannot differentiate between two no’s, you cannot make any difference. But when you say, “Yes there is God,” then there is a possibility of difference.

Because my yes will create my own God and your yes will create your own God. Your yes may be said to Jesus, my yes may be said to Krishna – but when you say no, then all no’s are similar. That is why on the earth there are no sects in atheism.

Atheists are all alike. They don’t have any scripture; they don’t have any church. When they don’t have any positive attitude there is nothing to differ about, a simple no is enough. The same has happened about techniques: no has only one technique, yes has one hundred and twelve, or many more even are possible. You can create new combinations.

Someone has said that the method I teach, the dynamic method of meditation, is not included in these one hundred and twelve methods. It is not included because it is a new combination, but all that is in it is there in the hundred and twelve methods. Some parts are in one technique, some other part is in some other technique. These hundred and twelve are the basic methods. You can create thousands out of them. There is no end to it. Any number of combinations is possible.

But those who ay there is no method can have only one method. You cannot create much out of no. So Bodhidharma, Lin Chi, Bokuju, Krishnamurti, have only one method. Really Krishnamurti comes just after a succession of Zen masters. He is talking Zen. Nothing is new about it. But Zen always looks new, and the reason is because Zen doesn’t believe in scriptures, doesn’t believe in tradition, doesn’t believe in techniques.

So whenever no arises again it is fresh and new. Yes believes in tradition, in scriptures, in masters.

Whenever yes is there, it will have a long beginningless tradition. Those who have said yes, Krishna or Mahavir, they go on saying that they are not saying anything new. Mahavir says, “Before me twenty-three teerthankaras have taught the same.” And Krishna says, “Before me, this seer gave this message to that seer, that seer gave the message to that and it has been coming down. I am not saying anything new.”

Yes will always be old, eternal. No will always look new, as if it has suddenly come into being. No cannot have traditional roots. It is unrooted. That is why Krishnamurti looks new. He is not.

What is this technique of “denying technique”? It can be used. It is one of the subtlest ways to kill and destroy the mind. Mind tries to cling to something that is a support; mind needs support to be there, it cannot exist in a vacuum. So it creates many types of supports – churches, scriptures, Bible, Koran, Gita – then it is happy, there is something to cling to. But then with this clinging the mind remains.

This technique of no-technique insists on destroying all supports. So it will insist that there is no scripture. No Bible can be of help because the Bible is nothing but words; no Gita can be of any help because whatsoever you come to know through Gita will be borrowed, and truth cannot be borrowed. No tradition is of any help because truth has to be achieved authentically, individually. You have to come to it, it cannot be transferred to you. No master can give it to you because it is not something like property. It is not transferable; it cannot be taught because it is not information. If a master teaches you, you can learn only words, concepts, doctrines. No master can make you a realized one. That realization has to happen to you and it has to happen without any help. If it happens through some help then it is dependent and then it cannot lead you to ultimate freedom, to moksha.

These are the parts of this no-technique. Through these criticisms, negations and arguments, supports are destroyed. Then you are left alone with no guru, no scripture, no tradition, no church, nowhere to move, nowhere to go, nowhere to be dependent. You are left in a vacuum. And really, if you can conceive of this vacuum and are ready to be in it, you will be transformed. But mind is very cunning. If Krishnamurti says to you that these are things – no support, no clinging, no master, no scripture, no technique – you will cling to Krishnamurti. There are many clinging to him. The mind has again created a support and then the whole point is lost.

Many people come to me and they say, “Our minds are in anguish. How to come to the inner peace, how to attain the inner silence?” And if I give them some technique they say, “But techniques cannot help because we have been listening to Krishnamurti.” Then I ask them, “Then why have you come to me? And what do you mean when you ask, ‘How to attain silence?’ You are asking for a technique and you are still going to listen to Krishnamurti. Why? If there is no master and if the real cannot be taught, then why are you going on listening to him? He cannot teach you anything. But you go on listening to him and you are being taught. And you have now started to cling to this no-technique. So whenever someone gives you technique, you will say, ‘No, we don’t believe in techniques.’ And you are still not silent. So what has happened? Where have you missed the train? If you really need no-technique, if you don’t have any technique – you must have attained. But you have not attained.”

The basic point has been missed; the basic point is that for this no-technique technique to work you must destroy all support, you must not cling to anything. And it is very arduous. It is almost impossible. That is why so many people for these last forty years have been listening to Krishnamurti but nothing has happened to them. It is so arduous and difficult, almost impossible to remain unsupported, to remain totally alone and to be alert that the mind is not allowed to create any support. Because mind is very cunning, it can create subtle supports again and again. You may throw away Gita, but then you fill the space with Krishnamurti’s books. You may laugh at Mohammed, you may laugh at Mahavir, but if someone laughs at Krishnamurti you get angry. Again in a roundabout way you have created a support, you are clinging.

Non-clinging is the secret of this method. If you can do it, it is good; if you cannot do it, then don’t deceive. Then there are methods. Use them! Then be clear that you cannot be alone so you will take someone’s help. Help is possible. Through help also, transformation is possible.

These are the opposites – no and yes, these are opposites. You can move from either but you must decide about your own mind and its working. If you feel that you can be alone….

Once it happened that when I was staying in a village a man came and he said to me, ”I am confused. My family is trying to arrange a marriage for me.” He was a young man, just fresh from university. He said, “I don’t want to be involved in all that. I want to become a sannyasin, I want to renounce all. So what is your advice?” I told him, “I never went to ask anybody, but you have come to take my advice. When you have come to take advice it shows that you need support, that you need. It will be difficult for you to live without a wife. That too is a support,”

You cannot live without a wife, you cannot live without your husband, but you think you can live without a guru? Impossible! Your mind needs support in every way. Why do you go to Krishnamurti? You go to learn, you go to be taught, you go to borrow knowledge. Otherwise there is no need. Many times it has happened that friends will say, “It would be good if you and Krishnamurti meet.” So I tell them, “You go and ask Krishnamurti and if he wants to meet, I will come. But what is going to be there? What will we do? What will we talk about? We can remain silent. What is the need? But they say, “It would be good if you both meet. It would be good for us. We will be happy to listen to what you say.”

So I tell them a story.

Once it happened that a Mohammedan mystic, Farid, was traveling. When they came near the village of Kabir, another mystic, the followers of Farid said that it would be very good if they both meet. And when it became known to Kabir’s disciples, they also insisted that, As Farid was passing, they should invite him in. So Kabir said, “It is okay.” Farid also said, “It is okay. We will go, but don’t say anything when I enter Kabir’s hut, remain quite silent.”

For two days Farid stayed in Kabir’s hut. There was total silence. They sat silently for two days and then Kabir came to the edge of his village to give a send-off to Farid – and in silence they departed. The moment they departed the followers of both started asking. The followers of Kabir asked him, “What was this? It became a boredom. You were sitting silently for two days, not even a single word was spoken, and we were so eager to hear.” Farid’s followers also said, “What was this? It seems weird. For two days continuously we were watching and watching and waiting and waiting for something to come out of this meeting. But nothing came out.”

Farid is reported to have said, “What do you mean? Two persons who know, cannot talk; two persons who don’t know, can talk much, but it is useless, even harmful. The only possibility is one person who knows, talking to one who doesn’t know” And Kabir said, “Whoever uttered a single word would have proved that he didn’t know.”

You go on asking for advice, you go on searching for supports. Realize it will that if you cannot remain without support, then it is good to find a support, a guide, knowingly. If you think that there is no need, that you are enough unto yourself, then stop seeking Krishnamurti or anybody. Stop going and remain alone.

It has happened also to persons who were alone but the phenomenon is very rare. Sometimes to one person in millions it happens – and that too is not without any cause. That person may have been seeking for many lives; he may have been finding many supports, many masters, many guides, and now a point has come where he can be alone. Only then it happens. But whenever it happens to a person, that he achieves the ultimate alone, he starts saying that it can happen to you also. It is natural.

Because it happened to Krishnamurti alone, he goes on saying that it can happen to you. It cannot happen to you! You are in search of support and that shows that alone you cannot do it. So don’t be deceived by yourself! Your ego may feel good that, “I don’t need any support!” Ego always thinks in terms of, “I alone am enough,” but that ego will not help. That will become the greatest barrier possible. No-technique is a technique but only for very specific people; for those who have struggled in many lives and have now come to a point where they can be alone, that technique is a help. And if you are that type of person, I know well you will not be here. So I am not worried about that person, he will not be here. He cannot be here. Not only here, he cannot be anywhere with any master, listening, seeking, searching, practicing. He will not be found anywhere. So we can leave him, we need not discuss him.

These techniques are for you. So this is how I will conclude. Krishnamurti is talking for the person who cannot be there and I am talking for persons who are here. Whatsoever Krishnamurti is saying is absolutely right but the persons to whom he is saying it are absolutely wrong. The person who can be alone, who without any method, any support, any scripture, any guru, can reach, is not going to listen to Krishnamurti because there is no need, there is no meaning. And those who are going to listen, they are not of that type, they will be in deep difficulty – and they are. They need support and their mind goes on thinking that there is no need for support. They need a guru and their mind goes on saying that the guru is a barrier. They need techniques and logically they have concluded that techniques cannot help. They are in deep trouble, but the trouble is created by themselves.

Before you start doing something you must try to understand what type of mind you have got, because ultimately the guru is not meaningful, ultimately our mind is meaningful. The ultimate decision is going to come through your mind, the destiny is to be fulfilled through your mind – so understand it, without any ego confusing you. Just understand if you need support, guidance, techniques, methods to work with. If you need them, find them. If you don’t need them, there is no question: be alone, unclinging, move alone, unclinging. The same will happen through both ways.

Yes and no are two opposites and you have to find out what your path is.

-Osho

From The Book of Secrets, Discourse #76, Q3

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.

Resources to Nourish Our Inner World

During these extraordinary times when many of us are self-isolating or in quarantine we have a unique opportunity to gather our energies and explore and nourish our inner world.

We are extremely fortunate that there are so many resources at our fingertips, here are a few.

Enjoy and Be Well!

Reading:

Osho reading library

OshoWorld discourse PDF’s

Osho Books hardcopy

Ramana Maharshi resources

O-Meditation Sangha posts

O-Meditation downloads

Listening:

Osho.com audio downloads

OshoWorld audio downloads

O-Meditation downloads

The entire J. Krishnamurti audio collection

Meditating:

Osho Active Meditation CD’s

Osho Book of Secrets Meditations

Osho No-Mind Meditations

 

What is Freedom – Anand Amido

Krishnamurti inspires a person to tackle human challenges personally, not to accept what either he has said on the topic or how your society defines such concepts. For Krishnamurti such questions burn and he encourages everyone to examine from every which side such questions as they emerge. No one has the answer for all because there really is no such thing as an answer.  There is only living the question and in so doing, one can live that which emerges in immediacy from a place beyond, before, encompassing the mechanical mind.

To begin with, I think of freedom as being able to do what I want to do!  This, of course, presupposes that I know what I want to do!  I experience disappointment, resistance, resentment, smoldering anger even, when I am thwarted from following my desires.  So what really is going on?  Someone wants me to go somewhere with him/her.  I don’t really want to; I am engaged in some other activity.  It is the person I love.  I want them to be happy.  I agree to go but have to monitor the underlying feelings!  I am not going cleanly, freshly, with joy!

So I look and look at all the thoughts and emotions that emerge and cause the pot to simmer ceaselessly.  I look some more.  Bubble, bubble, toil, and trouble!  Distractions occur but I return to the topic.  The question changes.  What is preventing me from living a fresh life filled with joy?  What am I hanging onto and why am I hanging onto it?  The idea that I wanted to do this rather than that?  What is that all about?  When my gaze becomes steady, looking within, sustained, something changes and nothing changes.  All contradictions die in the pool of now, the soundless, I am no longer identified with my small petty mind, my casual desires that pull me from all directions and really are not the avenue to joy but truly the road to hell!  In the steady silence there is no space for choice.  Love pervades that vibrant energetic nothingness and out of there right action, choiceless awareness.

Is this my own experience I wonder or do I simply have a geometric understanding from reading the books of those who live in such grace?  I can only say that once in a while grace descends or expands, or overwhelms.  Love fills the heart and I am home.

-Anand Amido

This post is from Amido’s blogsite.

Seeking What is True – J. Krishnamurti

I think there is a way of life in which there is not this process of reformation breeding further misery, and that way may be called religious. The truly religious person is not concerned with reform, he is not concerned with merely producing a change in the social order; on the contrary, he is seeking what is true, and that very search has a transforming effect on society. That is why education must be principally concerned with helping the student to seek out truth or God, and not merely preparing him to fit into the pattern of a given society.

I think it is very important to understand this while we are young; because, as we grow older and begin to set aside our little amusements and distractions, our sexual appetites and petty ambitions, we become more keenly aware of the immense problems confronting the world, and then we want to do something about them, we want to bring about some kind of amelioration.  But unless we are deeply religious we shall only create more confusion, further misery; and religion has nothing to do with priests, churches, dogmas, or organized beliefs.  These things are not religion at all, they are merely social conveniences to hold us within a particular pattern of thought and action; they are the means of exploiting our credulity, hope and fear.  Religion is the seeking out of what is truth, what is God, and this search requires enormous energy, wide intelligence, subtle thinking.  It is in this very seeking of the immeasurable that there is right social action, not in the so-called reformation of a particular society.

To find out what is truth there must be great love and a deep awareness of man’s relationship to all things—which means that one is not concerned with one’s own progress and achievements.  The search for truth is true religion, and the man who is seeking truth is the only religious man.  Such a man, because of his love, is outside of society, and his action upon society is therefore entirely different from that of the man who is in society and concerned with its reformation.  The reformer can never create a new culture.  What is necessary is the search of the truly religious man, for this very search brings about its own culture and it is our only hope.  You see, the search for truth gives an explosive creativeness to the mind, which is true revolution, because in this search the mind is uncontaminated by the edicts and sanctions of society.  Being free of all that, the religious man is able to find out what is true; and it is the discovery of what is true from moment to moment that creates a new culture.

-J. Krishnamurti

From Think on These Things, Chapter 27

 

%d bloggers like this: