At the Start of Sneezing be Uninterruptedly Aware – Osho

At the start of sneezing, during fright, in anxiety, above a chasm, flying in battle, in extreme curiosity, at the beginning of hunger, at the end of hunger, be uninterruptedly aware. 

It looks so simple: at the start of sneezing, during fright, in anxiety or before hunger or after hunger, be uninterruptedly aware. 

Many things have to be understood. Very simple acts like sneezing can be used as devices, because howsoever simple they look, they are very complex, and the inner mechanism is a very delicate thing. Whenever you feel that a sneeze is coming become alert, and the sneeze may not come at all. It may simply disappear, because a sneeze is a non-voluntary thing – unconscious, non-voluntary.

You cannot sneeze voluntarily; you cannot “will” it. How can you? How helpless man is! You cannot “will” a single sneeze. Howsoever you may try, you cannot bring it out. A single sneeze – such a small thing, but you cannot will it. It is non-voluntary; volition is not needed. It does not happen because of your mind; it is because of your total organism, your total body.

And the second thing: when you become alert, when the sneeze is coming – you cannot bring it, but when it is coming – if you become alert, it may not come, because you are bringing something new to the process: the alertness. It may disappear, but when the sneeze disappears and you are alert, there is a third thing. First, a sneeze is non-voluntary. You bring in a new thing – alertness. When the alertness comes, the sneeze may not come. If really you are alert, it will not; it may not happen at all. Then a third thing happens. The energy that was going to be released through a sneeze, where does it move? It moves to your alertness. Suddenly there is a flash, a lightning. You become more alert. The energy, that was going to be thrown by the sneeze moves into alertness. Suddenly you become more alert.

In that flash, in that lightning, even enlightenment is possible. That is why I say that these matters are so simple, they look absurd. Their promise seems to be too much. Just through sneezing, how can one become enlightened? But sneezing is not just sneezing; you are totally involved in it.

Whatsoever you do or whatsoever happens to you is a total involvement. Observe again: whenever a sneeze happens, you are totally in it with the whole body, the whole mind. It is not just your nose in which the sneeze is happening; every fiber, every cell of your body is involved in it. A subtle trembling, a subtle wavering goes all over the body, and with it the whole body becomes concentrated. And when the sneeze has happened, the whole body relaxes. But it is difficult to bring alertness to it. If you bring alertness to it, it will not happen, and if it happens you can know that the alertness was not there. That is why you should be alert.

At the start of sneezing…, because if it has started, nothing can be done. The arrow has gone; you cannot change it now. The mechanism has started. The energy is on its way to being released, it cannot be stopped. Can you stop a sneeze in the middle? How can you stop it in the middle? By the time you are ready, it has already happened. You cannot stop it in the middle.

Just at the beginning, become alert. The moment you feel the sensation that it is coming, become alert. Close your eyes and be meditative. Bring your total consciousness to the focus just where you are feeling the sensation of an oncoming sneeze. Just at the beginning, remain alert. The sneeze will disappear, and the energy will be transformed into more alertness. And because in the sneeze the whole body is involved, the whole mechanism is involved – it is a release mechanism and you are alert at this moment – there will be no mind, there will be no thought, no meditation.

In a sneeze, thinking stops. That is why so many people like snuff. It unburdens them, their minds feel more relaxed because for a moment thinking stops. Snuff gives them a glimpse of no-thinking. Through snuff, when the sneeze comes, they are not minds, they become bodies. The head disappears for a single moment, but it feels good.

If you become habituated to snuff, it is very difficult to leave it. It is more penetrating a habit than smoking; smoking is nothing before it. It penetrates more deeply, because smoking is conscious and sneezing is unconscious. To leave snuff is more difficult than to leave smoking. And smoking can be changed, substitutes can be found – but there is no substitute for snuff, because, really, sneezing is a very unique phenomenon in the body.

The only other thing that can be compared and which has been compared is the sex act. Those who think in terms of physiology, they say that the sex act is just sneezing through the sex organ – and the similarity is there. It is not one hundred percent right because much more is involved in sex, greater things are involved in it. But in the beginning, just in the beginning, the similarity is there.

Something is thrown out from the nose and you feel relieved, and something is thrown out from the sex organ and you feel relieved. And both are non-voluntary. You cannot move into sex with will. If you try, you will be a failure – particularly men, because man’s sex organ has to do something. It is active. You cannot “will” its act, and if you try, then the more you try, the more it will be impossible.

It can happen, but you cannot make it happen. Because of this, in the West sex has become a problem. This half century in the West sex knowledge has developed, and everyone has become so conscious about it that the sex act is becoming more and more impossible.

If you are alert, sex will be impossible. If a man is alert while making love, the more he is alert, the more it will be difficult. He will not be able to get an erection. It cannot be willed, and if you will it you will lose it. The same method, the same technique, can be used in sex. Just in the beginning, when you feel the sensation of an erection just coming to you but it has not yet come, you just feel the vibration, become alert. The vibration will be lost, and the same energy will move into alertness.

Tantra has used this. It has tried in many ways. A beautiful naked woman will be there just as an object for meditation, and the seeker, the meditator, will sit before the nude woman meditating on her body, her form, her proportions, just waiting for the first sensation in his sex center. The moment the sensation is there, he will close his eyes. He will forget the woman. He will close his eyes, and he will become alert of the sensation. Then sex energy is being transformed into alertness.

He is allowed to meditate on the nude woman only up to the point when the sensation is felt. When he has to close his eyes and move to his own sensation and become alert there, the same as is done in sneezing. And why does this flash happen? Because mind is not there. The basic thing is that if the mind is not there and you are alert, you will have satori, you will have the first glimpse of samadhi.

Thought is the barrier. So if thought disappears in any way, the thing will happen. But thought must disappear; only then is alertness there. Thought can disappear even in sleep; thought can disappear when you go unconscious; thought can disappear when you take some drug. Thought disappears, but then there is no alertness to be aware of the phenomenon that is hidden behind thought. So I define meditation as thoughtless consciousness. You can become thoughtless and unconscious; then there is no meaning. You can be conscious with thought; you are already that.

Bring these two things together – consciousness and thoughtlessness. When they meet, meditation happens, meditation is born. And you can try with very small things because nothing is really small. Even a sneeze is a cosmic phenomenon. In existence, nothing is great and nothing is small. Even a minute atom can destroy the whole world, and even a sneeze, a very atomic phenomenon, can transform you.

So don’t see things as small or big. There is nothing small and nothing big. If you have the penetrating eye, then very small things are vital. Between atoms universes are hidden, and between the universe and an atom you cannot say which is great and which is small. Even a single atom is a universe in itself, and the greatest universe is nothing but atoms. So don’t think in terms of great and small. Just try. Don’t say, “What can happen in a sneeze? I have been sneezing the whole life, and nothing has happened.”

-Osho

From The Book of Secrets, Discourse #41

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

Also see Follow the Sneeze IN

Osho’s Book of Secrets Meditations

All 112 of Shiva’s meditation techniques (Vigyan Bhairava Tantra)

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What is Tantric Sex? – Osho

What is tantric sex? After ‘monkey sex’ and after ‘love-bliss sex’, before the highest cosmic and religious sex in which no partner is needed, in which the cosmos is the partner, isn’t there tantric sex in which two partners are involved, a sex act which is a meditation based on certain techniques? 

It is good that after meditating on death you will be meditating on Tantra and Tantra sex. Because sex is also a small death. And because of that small death in sex, there is so much release of joy in you. For a single moment you disappear, and that moment is the climax, the orgasm. In that single moment you don’t know who you are. In that single moment you are pure energy vibrating, pulsating. With no center to it, with no ego in it.

In that single moment of orgasmic space you lose all boundaries, separation. You become vast, huge. You are no more separate from the other. That’s why there is so much joy – although the moment is very small. And once it is gone you feel very frustrated, because it has been so short, it was so fleeting. And you start hankering again. And each time that moment comes you reach to a pinnacle and then you fall into a deep darkness, into the abyss.

So sex brings you joy, and sex brings you great misery too. It takes you to sunlit peaks and then drops you into the darkest valleys. After each sex act one feels frustrated. Something was happening, happening, and it happened…and you could not even catch hold of it and it was gone.

So sex remains the greatest fascination and the greatest frustration.

Because of these two things in the act of sex, there are two types of people. Those who become too much fascinated with the fascination, addicted with sex, they are the people who go on indulging in all kinds of sexualities, and their whole life is nothing but a search for more sex, better sex. And the other, who become addicted with the frustration of sex, they renounce the world, the woman, the man; they escape to the Himalayas or into the monasteries. But both have reacted to sex. Your worldly and your other-worldly, they are not different – they both are sexual, they have chosen one part of the sex act. They have chosen opposite parts, but they have chosen out of the sex act.

That’s why your so-called religions are so much against sex – they have chosen the frustration part. The indulgent and the renunciate are two aspects of the same coin. They are not different people, they are the same people, and both have chosen out of sex.

Tantra is a totally different attitude. It says: There is joy in sex and there is frustration in sex. Because the moment of orgasm is very small. That moment can become very deep, that moment can remain there for hours. That moment, once you know the art of remaining in it, can surround you twenty-four hours. Tantra transforms sex. Tantra is the true religion. It does not choose between the fascination and the frustration, it transcends both. It uses sex as a key. And it is a key – because all life comes through it, all flowers bloom through it and all birds sing through it. All that you see around you, the green and the red and the gold, all comes through sex and is sex energy. All the poetry and all the songs and all the music is rooted in sex-energy. All art, all creativity, is nothing but an expression of sex.

So Tantra sex has to be understood. A few things: The Tantric definition of sexuality is opposite to the modern definition. The modern mind regards sex as a need – like hunger for food – which incidentally provides sense-and ego-gratification. That’s how Freud thinks about sex, that it gives you ego-gratification, satisfaction, relaxation; it relieves tensions, it is a need. Tantra regards sex as a powerful instinctual return to our ultimate reality, one of the highest forms of meditation.

There you have to understand – the first thing to remember – Freud does not understand sex’s ultimate depth. Freud has only looked into the repressed sexuality of man. What Christianity has done in the West, the wrong, Freud was trying to put it right. But Christianity remains superficial and Freud remains superficial. Why? Because the cure cannot go deeper than the disease. The disease was superficial; the cure cannot be deeper than that.

Tantra does not define sex as a need – it is not. A man can live without sex, it is not a need. Not like food – you cannot survive without food. It is not like thirst – you cannot survive without water. But you can survive easily without sex – maybe you can survive longer. Sex is not a need like food or thirst or hunger. Sex has a definitely total dimension, a different dimension altogether. It is a way to contact the ultimate reality. It is an urge to move to the original source.

In ordinary sex it happens only for moments. Even that is rare, because there are very few orgasmic persons left in the world. People have become so much civilized that to be orgasmic seems impossible. A civilized person cannot be orgasmic because he cannot allow himself to be wild.

Only a wild person can be orgasmic, because orgasm is wild. The better you are civilized, the better you are cultured, sophisticated, educated, the less is the possibility for you to be orgasmic. Then sex is just a relief. It is like sneezing, nothing much. It is sheer wastage.

You accumulate energy and you don’t know what to do with your energy. And the energy becomes heavy on you, it has to be thrown out in some way or other. So you go on throwing the energy. But you have lost the language of orgasm. What is the language of orgasm? If you are really orgasmic you will groan and moan and shout and sing and pray, and a thousand and one things will happen when you are making love to your woman or to your man. It is going to be a mad thing.

And that is difficult in a civilized world. Mm? The whole neighborhood will know that now you are making love. And people will start phoning the police-station that there is danger, one person has gone orgasmic.

Yes, you will dance, you will sing, you will utter incoherent sounds, gibberish will come.

One never knows what will happen because you lose control. To be orgasmic means the capacity to lose control. The constant control is there, you are simply sitting on your energies controlling them – ‘This should be, this should not be. This is right, that is wrong.’ You are continuously doing that, inhibiting, repressing. Only go so far, beyond that is danger, only this much is allowed. How can you be orgasmic?

And if you are not orgasmic in other things, you cannot be orgasmic in sex. If in your anger you control, then you cannot be orgasmic in sex. If you can be orgasmic in anger, only then can you be orgasmic in sex. Man is a totality. If you cannot get into a rage, how can you get into love? Impossible.

Have you watched it? Knowingly, unknowingly, couples stumble upon the fact that if they want to make love it is a must that they should fight before they make love. So each evening, couples fight, become angry. Mm? – that becomes a little help. A pillow-fight is helpful. Your energies start moving, your juice starts flowing. And if you can be a little silly and stupid in anger then you can be silly and stupid in love too. Then who cares?

A natural man is orgasmic in all his emotions.

Somebody has asked a question: ‘If people become authentic as you say they should become, authentic and natural, and if they don’t smile because a smile is phony, and if they go on screaming and shouting in the streets, what will happen to the world?’

Many things will happen to the world. First, wars will become impossible. There will be no Vietnams and no Israels, because people will never accumulate so much anger in them that they have to kill, and kill millions. Many things will happen to the world if people are natural. Then they will not shout so much as you think they will shout. Right now they are allowed to shout they will shout – but for how long? If they are given complete freedom, shouts and abusing and condemnation and fights will start disappearing from the world. It is a vicious circle. It is as if you have been starving a person and you don’t allow him to go close to the fridge. And you say ‘If we allow him he will eat too much.’ And you have been starving him – and now you are afraid if you allow him any freedom he will eat too much, he will fall ill. So you don’t allow him to come to the fridge. He has to live by his quota – whatsoever you give, he has to live on.

Now he fantasizes, he dreams: What to do? How to reach to the fridge? How to eat more? His whole imagination becomes focused on food, he dreams of food.

A famous Sufi story says: Three persons were travelling. They purchased a Sufi sweet, halvah. But they had not enough money and the halvah was very costly. It was not enough for three, so there was great debate – who should eat it? They decided ‘We should do one thing: we all should sleep, and in the morning whosoever has dreamt the best dream, he will be the person to eat it all.’ Agreed, they fell asleep.

Early morning, they related their dreams. One said, he was a Christian, he said ‘I dreamt of Jesus. And Jesus said “Come to Heaven, I have prepared the place for you.” And he was calling me, inviting me. It was such a beautiful dream, I have never dreamt such a thing. And Jesus was so radiant, and I feel so good that I have been accepted by Jesus.’

The second was a Hindu. He said ‘This is nothing. I dreamt I have become Krishna. And thousands of gopis are dancing around me, beautiful damsels, and I am playing on the flute. It was such a beautiful dream.’

And the third was a Mohammedan Sufi. And they asked ‘What about you?’ He said ‘Mohammed appeared and said “You fool! What are you doing here? Go and eat the halvah!” So I have eaten it! Because how can you reject when Mohammed commands?

If you are hungry, if you are kept starving, then the fear arises that if you are left loose in the streets you may enter into a restaurant, kill the owner, or do something. But if you are well fed then nobody does anything like that. This is what has happened – for thousands of years you have been repressed, you have been made more and more phony. Now the fear arises. The questioner is right – the fear arises, if people become authentic and start screaming and shouting and doing things the way they always wanted to do and were never allowed to do, the world will go mad

Yes, for a few years the world will go mad. But that madness will be therapeutic, it will help immensely. After that nobody will ever go mad. Neurosis will disappear, psychosis will disappear wars will disappear, politicians will become meaningless. Nations and the militaries and armies will become irrelevant – they will not be needed. That’s why the politician and the priest are so much in favor of repressing people, because they depend on these repressions. Wars will not be there.

Generals won’t like it, army people won’t like it, if there is no Vietnam  then their whole purpose is lost. If there are no nations then what is the point of having prime ministers and presidents? They are irrelevant.

Government becomes irrelevant if people are natural. Less and less government will be needed. So, so many people have investments. And their fear looks right, logical, because for so many centuries man has been repressed that they are afraid that things may explode. Yes, for a few years, for one generation at least, there will be great explosion. Then things will disappear.

Bertrand Russell has written that when he was a child, even legs of chairs were covered with cloth. Legs, because they look sexual. And he says ‘I had not seen any legs of a woman.’ The garments had to be so long that you could not see. And Bertrand Russell says in those days people used to fantasize about legs, dream about legs. Even a dream about a leg was enough of an excitement, an ecstasy. Now nobody bothers about the legs. Once you have seen men and women naked you stop worrying about, dreaming about, their nakedness. Dreams change.

The world needs to be more natural. Then there will be less anxiety, less fear, less worry. But for a generation there will be great explosion – after that, things will settle. We have to take that risk, only that risk can save humanity. Otherwise everybody is going mad.

The Tantra attitude about sex is that sex is not a need. It is a cosmic experience, it is an experience of meditation. It is an instinctual return to our ultimate reality, one of the highest forms of meditation.

In fifteen minutes to an hour or more of uninterrupted coitus, Tantra seeks a complete loss of the ego. Just see the difference. Freud says it is a gratification for the ego. And that’s how it has become, and Freud is not wrong. If you see the modern man, he is right.

People go on making love just to prove that they are males or females, or what charming people they are, beautiful people they are. People go on finding new women, new men, just to prove that ‘I am still attractive.’ My observation of people is that they don’t fall in love. Their joy is not love, their joy is conquest. Once they have achieved a woman they are no more interested in her. It is not love.

Now they are seeking new pasture, now they want a new woman. Now they want to prove again that they are still young, looked at, they still have charisma, magnetism. And the more women they can make love with, the more their ego is satisfied. This is not love. And Freud is right that sex gives ego-gratification.

But look at Tantra. Tantra has a totally different idea. Tantra says: The appeal of sex is because it gives you a moment of egolessness, timelessness, meditation. Because of ego-gratification, sex has become very, very superficial, it only scratches the skin. It does not go deep, it has no depth. So many people are worried about premature ejaculation. The reason? They don’t love. If they love, then naturally they can make love for longer periods – the more you are in love, the longer the period will be. For hours you can be in love, because there is no hurry, the ego is not controlling.

In a Tantra coitus you can remain for hours. It is a kind of melting with the woman or with the man, it is a kind of relaxation into each other’s being. And it is meditative, because there is no ego, no thought stirs. And time stops. This is a glimpse of God. Tantra is the natural way to God, the normal way to God. The object is to become so completely instinctual, so mindless, that we merge with ultimate nature – that the woman disappears and becomes a door for the ultimate; the man disappears and becomes a door for the ultimate.

This is the Tantra definition of our sexuality: The return to absolute innocence, absolute oneness.

The greatest sexual thrill of all is no search for thrills, but a silent waiting, utterly relaxed, utterly mindless. One is conscious, conscious only of being conscious. One is consciousness. One is contented, but there is no content to it. And then there is great beauty, great benediction.

The questioner asks: What is tantric sex… A sex which is a meditation based on certain techniques?

If you are too much technique-oriented you will miss the mystery of Tantra. That is pseudo Tantra that is based on techniques. Because if techniques are there, ego will be there, controlling. Then you will be DOING it. And doing is the problem, doing brings the doer. Tantra has to be a non-doing; it cannot be technical. You can learn techniques – you can learn certain breathing so that the coitus can become longer. If you breathe very, very slowly, if you breathe without any hurry, then the coitus will become longer. But you are controlling. It will not be wild and it will not be innocent. And it will not be meditation either. It will be mind – how can it be meditation? The mind will be controlling there. You cannot even breathe fast, you have to keep your breathing slow – if the breathing is slow then ejaculation will take a longer time, because for ejaculation to happen the breathing has to be fast and chaotic. Now, this is technique but not Tantra.

Real Tantra is not technique but love. It is not technique but prayer. Is not head-oriented but a relaxation into the heart. Please remember it. Many books have been written on Tantra, they all talk about technique. But the real Tantra has nothing to do with technique. The real Tantra cannot be written about; the real Tantra has to be imbibed. How to imbibe real Tantra? You will have to transform your whole approach.

Pray with your woman, sing with your woman, play with your woman, dance with your woman, with no idea of sex. Don’t go on thinking ‘When are we going to bed?’ Forget about it. Do something else, and get lost into it. And some day love will arise out of that being lost. Suddenly you will see that you are making love and you are not making it. It is happening, you are possessed by it. Then you have your first Tantra experience – possessed by something bigger than you. You were dancing or you were singing together or you were chanting together or you were praying together or meditating together, and suddenly you find you both have moved into a new space. And when you have started making love you don’t know, you don’t remember either. Then you are being possessed by Tantra energy. And then for the first time you will see a non-technical experience.

When you are making love don’t control. Go into un-control, go into chaos. It will be fearful, frightening, because it will be a kind of death. And the mind will say ‘Control!’ And the mind will say ‘Jump in and keep control, otherwise you will be lost in the abyss of it.’ Don’t listen to the mind, get lost. Abandon yourself utterly. And without any technique you will come to see a timeless experience. There will be no two in it: oneness. A consciousness will be there, a lucid passive consciousness will be there, you will know what is happening, because you will be fully aware. But you will not be there. Awareness will be there.

You have to imbibe the Tantra spirit – it is not a technique to be learned.

-Osho

From This Very Body the Buddha, Chapter Eight

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.

Don’t Get Stuck in the Outer – Osho

You ask: “Do I rightly understand you that even if you and your beloved can transmute your sexual energy into spirituality, that this relationship will not be satisfying either?”

Yes, it will not be satisfying either. In fact, it will create in you the greatest discontent that you have ever felt, because it will make you aware how much is possible. It will make you aware of the tremendous moment of that orgasmic unity, of that spiritual transmutation. But it will remain only momentary. With the outer, nothing can become permanent. And once the moment is gone, the higher was the peak, the lower will be the valley, and you will fall deep down in darkness. But it will make you aware of one thing, that if male and female energy can have a meeting which is non-temporal, then there will be eternal contentment.

How to manage it? Out of this question the whole science of Tantra was born. How to do it? It can be done. It cannot be done with the beloved outside — it cannot be done without the beloved outside, remember that too, because the first glimpse comes from the beloved outside. It is only a glimpse, but with it comes a new vision that, deep down inside yourself, there are both the energies present — male and female.

Man is bisexual — every man, every woman. Half of you is male and half of you is female. If you are a woman, then the female part is on top and the male part is hidden behind, and vice versa. Once you have become aware of this, then a new work starts: your inner woman and inner man can have a meeting and that meeting can remain absolute. There is no need to come back from the peak. But the first vision comes from the outer.

Hence Tantra uses the outer woman, the outer man, as part of inner work. Once you have become aware that you have a woman inside you or a man inside you, then the work takes on a totally new quality, it starts moving in a new dimension. Now the meeting has to happen inside; you have to allow your inner woman and man to meet.

In India we have had that concept for at least five thousand years. You may not have seen the statues of Shiva as Ardhanarishwar: half man, half woman. That is the picture of everybody’s being, inner being. You must have seen shivalinga: it symbolizes the male. But shivalinga is placed in the female sexual organ, it is not alone; they are together. That again represents the inner duality, the inner polarity, but the polarity can meet and merge.

With the outer, the merger will be only for the moment. Then great frustration and great misery… and the higher the moment, the deeper will be the darkness that follows it. But the meeting can happen inwardly.

First learn that the peak is possible, and then feel grateful to the woman who has given you the peak, feel grateful to the man. Tantra worships the woman as the goddess and the man as the god. Any woman who helps you to attain to this vision is a goddess, any man that helps you to attain to this vision is a god. Love becomes sacred because it gives you the first glimpses of the divine. Then the inner work starts. You have worked without, now you have to work within.

Tantra has two phases, two stages: the outer, the extrovert Tantra, and the inner, the introvert Tantra. The beginning has to be always from the without; it is because we are there, so we have to start from the place we are and then move inwards. When the inner man and woman have met and melted, and when you are no more divided inside, you have become one — integrated, crystallized, one — you have attained. This is enlightenment.

But right now everything is upside down. You have completely forgotten the inner; the outer has become your whole life. This is as if somebody is standing on his head and has forgotten completely how to stand on his feet again. Now, standing on your head your life will be really difficult. If you want to go somewhere, if you want to do something, everything will become very, very difficult, almost impossible.

And that is what is happening. People are upside down, because the without has become more important than the within. The without has become all-important, and the within is completely ignored, forgotten.

The real treasure is within. From the without, you can get only hints of the inner treasure; from the without, only arrows pointing to the innermost core of your being; from without, only milestones. But don’t cling to a milestone, and don’t think that this is the goal and you have arrived.

Remember that the ordinary man is living a very abnormal life, because his values are upside down. Money is more important than meditation, logic is more important than love, mind is more important than heart. Power over others is more important than power over one’s own being. Mundane things are more important than finding some treasures which death cannot destroy.

Larry went to an Italian restaurant, and just as the waiter was about to serve, he tripped and dumped a whole bowl of minestrone right in Larry’s lap.

Was Larry angry? Was he even slightly ruffled?

He simply looked up with great dignity and disdain and said, “Waiter, I believe there is a soup in my fly.”

Things are completely upside down. The fly is not in the soup, the soup is in the fly. And that’s why there is so much misery. Everybody seems to be simply running after shadows, knowing perfectly well that there is nothing to happen, that nothing is ever going to happen, but what else to do? Standing by the side of the road when everybody is rushing looks silly. It is better to go on rushing with the crowd.

Let this sink deep in your heart: that unless the within becomes more important than the without, you are living a very abnormal life. The normal person is one whose within is the source of everything that he is doing. The without is only a means, the within is the end.

The love affair that you have with a woman or a man is a means to the end. The end is having a love affair with your inner woman or inner man. The outer has to be used as a learning situation; it is a great opportunity.

I am not against the outer love affair, I am all for it, because without it you will never become aware of the inner. But remember don’t get stuck in the outer.

-Osho

From The Book of Wisdom, Chapter 26, Q3

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

You may also like to read a related post, Old Age is the Last Opportunity.

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.

Love and Meditation, Yoga and Tantra – Osho

The ultimate search is individual, but can you explain the integral part of the beloved in tantra and the search for our inner self?

A very intricate, complex thing has to be understood:
If you are not in love, you are lonely.
If you are in love, really in love, you become alone.

Loneliness is sadness; aloneness is not sadness. Loneliness is a feeling of incompleteness. You need someone and the needed one is not available. Loneliness is darkness, with no light in it. A dark house, waiting and waiting for someone to come and kindle the light.

Aloneness is not loneliness. Aloneness means the feeling that you are complete. Nobody is needed, you are enough. And this happens in love. Lovers become alone – through love you touch your inner completeness. Love makes you complete. Lovers share each other, but that is not their need, that is their overflowing energy.

Two persons who have been feeling lonely can make a contract, can come together. They are not lovers, remember. They remain lonely. Now, because of the presence of the other, they don’t feel the loneliness – that’s all. They somehow deceive themselves. Their love is nothing but a deception to deceive oneself: I am not lonely – somebody else is there. Because two lonely persons are meeting, their loneliness basically is doubled, or even multiplied. That’s what happens ordinarily.

You feel lonely when you are alone, and when you are in relationship you feel miserable. This is an everyday observation. When people are lonely they feel lonely, and they are in a deep search for somebody to be related to. When they are related to somebody, then misery starts; then they feel it was better to be lonely – this is too much. What happens?

Two lonely persons meet – that means two gloomy, sad, miserable persons meet. The misery is multiplied. How can two uglinesses become beautiful? How can two lonelinesses coming together become completion, totality? Not possible. They exploit each other, they somehow try to deceive themselves through the other. But that deception doesn’t go far. By the time the honeymoon is finished, the marriage is also finished. It is very temporary. It is just an illusion.

Real love is not a search to go against loneliness. Real love is to transform loneliness into aloneness. To help the other – if you love the person, you help him to be alone. You don’t fill him or her. You don’t try to complete the other in some way by your presence. You help the other to be alone, to be so full out of her or his own being that you will not be a need.

When the person is totally free, then out of that freedom sharing is possible. Then he gives much, but not as a need; he gives much, but not as a bargain. He gives much because he has much. He gives because he enjoys giving.

Lovers are alone, and a real lover never destroys your aloneness. He will always be totally respectful about the aloneness of the other. It is sacred. He will not interfere in it, he will not spoil that space.

But ordinarily, lovers, so-called lovers, are very much afraid of the other and the other’s aloneness, independence; they are very much afraid – because they think if the other is independent then they will not be needed, then they will be discarded. So the woman goes on trying… that the husband should remain dependent, always in need, so that she can remain valuable. And the husband goes on trying in every way so that the woman always remains in need, so that he remains valuable. This is a bargain and there is continuous conflict, struggle. The struggle is that everybody needs his freedom.

Love allows freedom; not only allows, but strengthens freedom. And anything that destroys freedom is not love. It must be something else. Love and freedom go together, they are two wings of the same bird. Whenever you see that your love is going against your freedom, then you are doing something else in the name of love.

Let this be your criterion: freedom is the criterion; love gives you freedom, makes you free, liberates you. And once you are totally yourself, you feel grateful to the person who has helped you. That gratefulness is almost religious. You feel in the other person something divine. He has made you free, or she has made you free, and love has not become a possessiveness.

When love deteriorates it becomes possessiveness, jealousy, struggle for power, politics, domination, manipulation – a thousand and one things, all ugly. When love soars high, to the purest sky, it is freedom, total freedom. It is moksha – it is absolute freedom.

Now the question: “The ultimate search is individual, but can you explain the integral part of the beloved in Tantra and the search for our inner self?”

Tantra is purest love. Tantra is the methodology of purifying love of all its poisons. If you are in love, the love I am talking about, your very love will help the other to be integrated. Your very love will become a cementing force for the other. In your love the other will come together, because your love will give freedom; and under the shade of your love, under the protection of your love, the other will start growing.

All growth needs love – but unconditional love. If love has conditions then growth cannot be total, because those conditions will come in the way. Love unconditionally. Don’t ask anything in return. Much comes on its own – that’s another thing. Don’t be a beggar. In love be an emperor. Just give it and see what happens… a thousand fold it comes back. But one has to learn it. Otherwise one remains a miser; one gives a little and waits for much to come back, and your waiting, your expectation, destroys the whole beauty of it.

When you are waiting and expecting, the other feels that you are manipulating. He may say it or not, but he feels you are manipulating. And wherever you feel manipulation, one wants to rebel against it – because it is against the inner need of the soul, because any demand from the outside disintegrates you. Any demand from the outside divides you. Any demand from the outside is a crime against you, because your freedom is polluted. Then you are no more sacred. You are no more the end – you are being used as a means. And the greatest immoral act in the world is to use somebody as a means.

Each being is an end unto himself. Love treats you as an end unto yourself. You are not to be dragged into any expectations. Tantra is the highest form of love. Tantra is the science, the yoga of love.

So a few things to be remembered. One: love, but not as a need – as a sharing. Love, but don’t expect – give. Love, but remember your love should not become an imprisonment for the other.

Love, but be very careful; you are moving on sacred ground. You are going into the highest, the purest and holiest temple. Be alert! Drop all impurities outside the temple. When you love a person, love the person as if the person is a god, not less than that. Never love a woman as a woman and never love a man as a man, because if you love a man as a man your love is going to be very, very ordinary. Your love is not going to be more than lust. If you love a woman as a woman, your love is not going to soar very high. Love a woman as a goddess, then love becomes worship.

In Tantra, the man who is going to make love to the woman has to worship her for months as a goddess. He has to visualize in the woman the mother-goddess. When the visualization has become total, when no lust arises, when seeing the woman sitting naked before him he simply feels thrilled with a divine energy, no lust arises, the very form of the woman becomes divine, and all thoughts stop and only reverence is felt – then he is allowed to make love.

It looks a little absurd and paradoxical. When there is no need to make love, then he is allowed to make love. When the woman has become a goddess, then he is allowed to make love – because now love can soar high, love can become a climax, a crescendo. Now it will not be of the earth, it will not be of this world; it will not be of two bodies, it will be of two beings. It will be a meeting of two existences. Two souls will meet, merge and mingle, and both will come out of it tremendously alone.

Aloneness means purity. Aloneness means that you are just yourself and nobody else. Aloneness means that you are pure gold; just gold and nothing else… just you. Love makes you alone. Loneliness will disappear, but aloneness will arise.

Loneliness is a state when you are ill with yourself, bored with yourself, tired of yourself, and you want to go somewhere and to forget yourself into somebody else. Aloneness is when you are thrilled just by your being. You are blissful just by being yourself. You need not go anywhere. Need has disappeared. You are enough unto yourself. But now, a new thing arises in your being. You have so much that you cannot contain it. You have to share, you have to give. And whosoever accepts your gift, you will feel grateful towards him that he accepted. He could have rejected it.

Lovers feel grateful that their love has been accepted. They feel thankful, because they were so full of energy and they needed someone to pour that energy into. When a flower blooms and releases its fragrance to the winds it feels grateful to the winds – the fragrance was growing more and more heavy on it. It was becoming almost a burden. It was just as if a woman is pregnant and nine months have passed and the child is not being born, is delaying. Now she is so much burdened; she wants to share the child with the world. That is the meaning of birth.

Up to now she has been carrying the child in herself. It was nobody else’s but her own. But now it is too much; she cannot contain it. It has to be shared; the child has to be shared with the world. The mother has to drop her miserliness. Once the child is out of the womb, it is no more only of the mother; by and by it will go away, and far away. It will become part of the great world. The same happens when a cloud comes full of rain water ready to shower, and when it showers, rains, the cloud feels unburdened and happy and grateful to the thirsty earth because it accepted.

There are two types of love. One: love when you are feeling lonely – as a need, you go to the other. Then love when are not feeling lonely, but alone. In the first case you go to get something; in the second case you go to give something. A giver is an emperor.

Remember, Tantra is not ordinary love. It has nothing to do with lust. It is the greatest transformation of lust into love. The ultimate search is individual – but love makes you individual. If it doesn’t make you individual, if it tries to make you a slave, then it is not love – it is hate pretending love. Pretending to be love, it is hidden hatred just managing somehow; managing somehow and pretending that it is love.

Love of this type kills, destroys the individuality. It makes you less of an individual. It pulls you down. You are not enhanced, you don’t become graceful. You are being pulled into the mud. And everybody starts feeling that he is settling with something dirty. Love should give you freedom – never settle for less. Love should make you a white cloud, completely free, a wanderer in the sky of freedom, with no roots attached anywhere. Love is not an attachment; lust is.

Meditation and love are the two ways to attain to that individuality I am talking about. Both are very, very deeply related together. In fact they are both aspects of the same coin: love and meditation.

If you meditate, sooner or later you will come upon love. If you meditate deeply, sooner or later you will start feeling a tremendous love arising in you that you have never known before – a new quality to your being, a new door opening. You have become a new flame and you want to share now.

If you love deeply, by and by you will become aware that your love is becoming more and more meditative. A subtle quality of silence is entering in you. Thoughts are disappearing, gaps appearing – silences. You are touching your own depth.

Love makes you meditative if it is on the right lines.

Meditation makes you loving if it is on the right lines.

And there are only two types of people in the world, basically: those who will find their meditation through love, and those who will find their love through meditation.

For those who will find their meditation through love, it is Tantra; that is their science. For those who will find love through their meditation, for them it is Yoga; that is their science.

Tantra and Yoga, these are the only two ways – basically, very foundational. But both can go wrong if you don’t understand well. And the criterion is – listen – if you meditate and it doesn’t become love, know well you have gone wrong somewhere. And you will find ninety-nine yogis out of a hundred have gone wrong. The more they enter into their meditation, the more they become against love. They become, in fact, afraid of love. They start thinking of love as a distraction. Then their meditation is not real meditation. A meditation out of which love does not arise is not meditation at all. It is an escape, not a growth. It is as if a seed has become afraid of becoming a plant and blossoming in flowers, and has become afraid of releasing its fragrance to the winds – a seed has become a miser.

You will find this type of yogi all over India. Their meditation has not come to bloom. Their meditation got constipated somewhere on the way. They are stuck. You will not find grace on their faces, and you will not find intelligence in their eyes. You will see around them a certain climate of dullness and stupidity. You will not find them alert, aware, alive. A certain deadness… because if you are alive you have to become loving. To avoid love they avoid life.

And these people will always be escaping towards the Himalayas, anywhere where they can remain without others. Their aloneness will not be aloneness, it will be a loneliness – you can read it on their faces. They are not happy being alone. On their faces you will see a certain type of martyrdom – which is foolishness! – As if they have been sacrificing. Ego you will find there; humbleness, no – because whenever humbleness comes, love comes. If the ego becomes too strong, then love can be destroyed completely. Ego is the opposite of love.

Yoga is in the hands of the wrong people. And the same happened with Tantra. In the name of Tantra, people started just fulfilling their lust and sex and their perversions. It never became meditative. It became a subtle rationalization of lust, sex and passion. It became a trick; you can hide behind it. For all sorts of perversions, Tantra became a blanket to hide behind.

So remember this. Man is very cunning. He has destroyed Yoga, he has destroyed Tantra. Remain alert! Both are good, both are tremendously beneficial, but the criterion to remember is that if you are doing one rightly, the other is to follow as a shadow. If the other is not following, then you are wrong somewhere.

Move back, start again. Go into your mind, analyze your mind. Somewhere you have tricked yourself. And it is not difficult – because you can deceive others, but you cannot deceive yourself. That is impossible. If you just go within and watch, you will come to know where you have been deceiving. Nobody can deceive himself; it is impossible. How can you deceive yourself?

-Osho

From The Search, Chapter Six

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 online from Amazon.com and in the U.S. from OshoStore-Sedona and Osho Here and Now.

Fear of Transformation – Osho

Many people seem to be interested in meditation, but that interest cannot be very deep because so very few are transformed through it. If the interest is really deep, it becomes a fire by itself. It transforms you. Just through intense interest you start becoming different. A new center of being arises. So many people seem to be interested but nothing new arises in them, no new center is born, no new crystallization is achieved. They remain the same.

That means they are deceiving themselves. The deception is very subtle but it is bound to be there. If you go on taking medicine, having treatments, and the illness remains the same – rather on the contrary, it goes on increasing – then your medicine, your treatment, is bound to be false. Maybe deep down you don’t want to be transformed. That fear is very real – the fear of transformation. So on the surface you go on thinking that you are deeply interested, but deep down you go on deceiving.

The fear of transformation is just like the fear of death. It is a death, because the old will have to go and the new will come into being. You will be there no more, something totally unknown to you will be born out of you. Unless you are ready to die, your interest in meditation is false, because only those who are ready to die will be reborn. The new cannot become a continuity with the old. The old must be discontinued. The old must go. Only then can the new come into being. The new is not an outgrowth of the old, the new is not continuous with it – the new is totally new. And it comes only when the old dies. There is a gap between the old and the new – that gap gives you the fear. You are afraid. You want to be transformed but simultaneously you want to remain the old. This is the deception. You want to grow, but you want to remain you. Then growth is impossible; then you can only deceive; then you can go on thinking and dreaming that something is happening, but nothing will happen because the basic point has been missed.

So there are many people all over the world who are very interested in meditation, moksha, nirvana, and nothing is happening. There is so much noise about it but nothing real is happening. What is the matter?

Sometimes the mind is so cunning that because you don’t want to be transformed, the mind will create a superficial interest so that you can say to yourself, “You are interested, you are doing whatsoever can be done.” And you remain the same. And if nothing happens, you think that the technique you are using is wrong, the guru you are following is wrong, the scripture, the principle, the method, is wrong. You never think that even with a wrong method transformation is possible if the real interest is there; even with a wrong method you will be transformed. If you are really interested in transformation, you will become different even if following a wrong guru. If your soul and your heart is in your effort, no one can mislead you except yourself. And nothing is a barrier to your progress except your own deceptions.

When I say that even a wrong master, a wrong method, a wrong principle, can lead you to the real, I mean that the real transformation happens when you are intensely involved in it, not through any method. The method is just a device, the method is just a help, the method is secondary – your being involved in it is the fundamental thing. But you go on doing something – not even doing, you go on talking about doing. And words create an illusion: because you think so much about it, you read so much about it, you listen so much about it, that you start feeling you are doing something. So-called religious persons have developed many deception devices.

I have heard that a motorist, driving along a road, saw the school building on fire. The teacher of the small school of that small village was Mulla Nasruddin. He was sitting under a tree. The motorist called to him, “What are you doing there? The school building is on fire!” Mulla Nasruddin said, “I know about it.” The motorist was much excited. He said, “Then why are you not doing something?” Mulla Nasruddin said, “Ever since it started I have been praying for rain. I am doing something.”

Prayer is a trick to avoid meditation, and the so-called religious mind has developed many types of prayer. Prayer can also become a meditation – when it is not only a prayer, it is a deep effort, a deep involvement. Prayer can also become meditation, but ordinarily prayer is just an escape. To avoid meditation, people go on praying. To avoid doing anything they pray. Prayer means that God must do something. Someone else must do. Prayer means that we are passive – something must be done to us. Meditation is not prayer in that sense: meditation is something you do to yourself. And when you are transformed, the whole universe behaves differently to you, because the universe is nothing but a response to you, whatsoever you are. If you are silent, the whole universe responds to your silence in thousands and thousands of ways. It reflects you. Your silence is multiplied infinitely. If you are blissful, the whole universe rejects your bliss. If you are in misery, the same happens. The mathematics remains the same, the law remains the same: the universe goes on multiplying your misery. Prayer won’t do. Only meditation can help because meditation is something to be done authentically by you, it is a doing on your part.

So the first thing I would like to say to you is be constantly alert that you are not deceiving yourself. You may be doing something and still deceiving yourself.

I have heard that Mulla Nasruddin once came running into a post office, grasping the postmaster by the lapel, shook him, and said, “I have gone crazy. My wife has disappeared!” The postmaster felt sorry and he said, “Really, she has disappeared? Unfortunately this is a postal department – you have to go to the police department to report this disappearance.” Mulla Nasruddin shook his head negatively and said, “I am not going to be caught again. In the past my wife also disappeared and when I reported it to the police department, they found her. I am not going to be caught again. If you can take the report, take it, otherwise I am going.”

He wants to report to feel good, to feel that he has done whatsoever can be done. But he doesn’t want to report to the police department because he is afraid.

You go on doing things just to feel good, just to feel that you are doing something. But really you are not ready to be transformed. So all that you do just passes as useless activity – not only useless, harmful also, because it is a wastage of time, energy, and opportunity. These techniques of Shiva are only for those who are ready to do. You can ponder over them philosophically – that means nothing. But if you are actually ready to do, then something will start happening to you. They are alive methods, not dead doctrines. Your intellect is not needed; your totality of being is required. And any method will do. If you are ready to give it a chance, any method will do. You will become a new man.

Methods are devices, I will repeat again. If you are ready, then any method can do. They are just tricks to help you to take the jump, they are just like jumping boards. From any jumping board you can jump into the ocean. The jumping boards are insignificant: what color they are, which wood they are made of is irrelevant. They are simply jumping boards and you can take a jump from them. All these methods are jumping boards. Whatsoever method takes your fancy, don’t go on thinking about it, do it!

Difficulties will arise when you start doing something – if you don’t do anything there will be no difficulty. Thinking is very easy doing because you are not really traveling, but when you start doing something, difficulties arise. So if you see that difficulties have arisen, you can feel that you are on the right track – something is happening to you. Then old barriers will break, old habits will go, there will be change, there will be disturbance and chaos. All creativity comes out of chaos. You will be created anew only if all that you are becomes chaotic. So these methods will destroy you first, then only will a new being be created. If there are difficulties, feel fortunate – that shows growth. No growth is smooth… and spiritual growth cannot be smooth, that is not its nature. Because spiritual growth means growing upwards, spiritual growth means reaching into the unknown, reaching into the uncharted. Difficulties will be there. But remember that with each difficulty that is passed you are crystalized. You become more solid. You become more real. For the first time you will feel something centering within you, something becoming solid.

As you are now you are just a liquid phenomenon, changing every moment, nothing stable. Really you cannot claim any ‘I’ – you don’t have one. You are many ‘I’s’ just in a flow, a river-like flow. You are a crowd, not an individual yet. But meditation can make you an individual.

 This word ‘individual’ is beautiful: it means indivisible. Right now as you are, you are divided. You are only many fragments clinging together anyhow without any center being there, without any master in the house, with only servants. And for a moment any servant can become the master.

Every moment you are different because you are not – and unless you are, the Divine cannot happen to you. To whom can it happen? You are not there. People come to me and they say, “We would like to see God.” I ask them, “Who will see? You are not there. God is always there, but you are not there to see. It is just a passing thought that you want to see God.” The next moment they are not interested; the next moment they have forgotten all about it. A persistent, intense effort and longing is needed. Then any method will do.

Now, we should enter the methods.

-Osho

From The Book of Secrets, Chapter 73

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 online from Amazon.com and in the U.S. from OshoStore-Sedona and Osho Here and Now.

That Third Point is Advaita – Osho

Man is Janus-faced – animal and divine both. Animal belongs to his past, divine belongs to his future, and this creates the difficulty. The past has passed, it is no more; just a shadow of it lingers on. And the future is still the future, it has not yet come; it just a dream, just a possibility. And between these two exists man – the shadow of the past and the dream of the future. He is neither and he is both.

He is both because the past is his – he was animal. He is both because the future is his – he can be divine. And he is not both, because the past is no more and the future is yet to be.

Man exists as a tension between these two: that which was and that which can be. This creates a conflict, a constant struggle to realize, to be something. In a sense, man is not. Man is just a step from the animal to the divine – and a step is nowhere. It was somewhere and it will be somewhere, but right now it is nowhere, just hanging in the air.

So whatsoever man is doing – whatsoever I say – he is never satisfied in it, never content, because two diametrically opposite existences meet in him. If the animal is satisfied then the divine is in discontent. If the divine is satisfied then the animal is in discontent. A part is always in discontent.

If you move to the animal, in a way you satisfy part of your being, but immediately in that satisfaction dissatisfaction arises, because the opposite part, your future, is just contrary to it. The satisfaction of the animal is the dissatisfaction of the possibility of your future. If you satisfy your divine possibility the animal revolts; it feels hurt. A definite discontent arises within you. You cannot satisfy both, and satisfying one, the other is dissatisfied.

I remember one anecdote. One sports car enthusiast reached the pearly gates, and St. Peter welcomed him. He had come with his Jaguar, and the first thing he asked St. Peter was this: “Are there beautiful highways in heaven?”

St. Peter said, “Yes, they have the most beautiful highways, but there is one difficulty – in heaven they don’t allow automobiles.”

The speed-fiend said, “Then it is not for me. Then please arrange for me to be sent to the other place. I would like to go to hell. I cannot leave my Jaguar.”

So it was arranged. He reached hell, he came to the gates, and Satan welcomed him and said that he was very happy to see him. He said, “You are just like me; I am also a lover of Jaguars.”

The speed-fiend said, “Fine, give me the map of your highways.”

Satan became sad. He said, ‘Sir, we don’t have any highways down here – that is the hell of it!’

This is the situation of man. Man is Janus-faced, a double being, split in two. If you satisfy one thing, then something becomes frustrating to your other part. If you do otherwise, then the other part is dissatisfied. Something is always lacking. And you cannot satisfy both, because they are diametrically opposite.

And everyone is doing this impossible thing, trying to do this – to have a compromise somewhere so both heaven and hell can meet; so body and soul, the lower and the higher, the past and the future, can somewhere meet and have a compromise. We have been doing that for many lives. It has not happened, and it is not going to happen. The whole effort is absurd, impossible.

These techniques are not concerned with creating a compromise within you. These techniques are to give you a transcendence. These techniques are not to satisfy the divine against the animal.

That is impossible. That will create more turmoil within you, more violence, more struggle. These techniques are not to satisfy your animal against the divine. These techniques are just to transcend the duality. They are neither for the animal nor for the divine.

Remember, that is the basic difference between other religions and tantra. Tantra is not a religion, because religion basically means: for the divine against the animal – so every religion is part of the conflict. Tantra is not a struggle technique, it is a transcendence technique. It is not to fight with the animal, it is not for the divine. It is against all duality. It is neither for nor against really. It is simply creating a third force within you, a third center of existence where you are neither animal nor divine.

For tantra that third point is advait, that third point is non-duality.

Tantra says you cannot reach the one by fighting through duality. You cannot come to a non-dual point by choosing one thing in the struggle in duality. Choice will not lead you to the one; only a choiceless witnessing.

This is very foundational to tantra, and because of this tantra was never really understood rightly. It has suffered a long, a centuries-old misunderstanding; because the moment tantra says it is not against the animal, you start feeling as if tantra is for the animal. And the moment tantra says it is not for the divine, you then start thinking that tantra is against the divine.

Really, tantra is for a choiceless witnessing. Don’t be with the animal, don’t be with the divine, and don’t create a conflict. Just go back, just go away, just create a gap between you and this duality and become a third force, a witnessing, from where you can see both the animal and the divine. I told you that the animal is the past and the divine is the future, and past and future are opposed.

Tantra is in the present. It is neither past nor future. Just this very moment, don’t belong to the past and don’t hanker for the future. Don’t long for the future and don’t be conditioned by the past. Don’t allow the past to become a hangover and don’t create any projections in the future. Remain true to this very moment, here and now, and you transcend. Then you are neither animal nor divine. For tantra, to be such is to be God. To be such, in this suchness of the moment, where past is unrelated and future is not created, you are free, you are freedom.

These techniques are not religious in this sense, because religion is always opposed to the animal. Religion creates a conflict. So if you are really religious you will become schizophrenic, you will be split. All religious civilizations are split civilizations. They create neurosis, because they create inner conflict. They divide you into two, and one part of your being becomes the enemy. Then your whole energy is dissipated fighting with yourself.

Tantra is not religious in that sense, because tantra doesn’t believe in any conflict, in any violence. And tantra says don’t fight with yourself. Just be aware. Don’t be aggressive and violent with yourself. Just be a witness, a watcher. In the moment of witnessing you are neither; both the faces disappear. In that moment of witnessing you are not human. You simply are. You exist without any label. You exist without any name. You exist without any category. You are without being anyone in particular – a simple amness, a pure being. These techniques are for that pure being.

-Osho

From The Book of Secrets, Chapter 59

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 online from Amazon.com and in the U.S. from OshoStore-Sedona and Osho Here and Now.

The Nature of Darkness – Osho

Let us first meditate a little on the nature of darkness. It is one of the most mysterious things in existence – and your life is so much involved in it, you cannot afford not to think about it. One has to come to terms with the nature of darkness because the same is the nature of sleep, and the same is the nature of death, and the same is the nature of all ignorance.

The first thing, if you meditate on darkness, that will be revealed to you is that darkness does not exist, it is there without any existence. It is more mysterious than light. It has no existence at all; rather, on the contrary, it is just an absence of light. There is no darkness anywhere, you cannot find it, it is simply an absence. It is not in itself, it has no “in-itself” existence, it is simply that the light is not present.

If the light is there, there is no darkness; if the light is not there, there is darkness – absence of light, it is not a presence of something. That’s why light comes and goes – darkness remains. It is not, but it persists. Light you can create, light you can destroy, but you cannot create darkness and you cannot destroy darkness: it is always there without being there at all.

The second thing, if you contemplate, you will come to realize that because it is nonexistential you cannot do anything to it. And if you try to do anything to it, you will be defeated. Darkness cannot be defeated, how can you defeat something which is not? And when you will be defeated you will think: “It is very powerful because it has defeated me.” This is absurd! Darkness has no power; how can a thing have power which is not? You are not defeated by the darkness and its power, you are defeated by your foolishness. In the first place you started fighting – that was foolish. How can you fight with something which is not? And remember, you have been fighting with many things which are not, they are just like darkness.

The whole morality is a fight against darkness, that’s why it is stupid. The whole morality, unconditionally, is a fight with darkness, fighting with something which in itself is not. Hate is not real, it is just the absence of love. Anger is not real, it is just the absence of compassion. Ignorance is not real, it is just the absence of buddhahood, of enlightenment. Sex is not real, it is just the absence of brahmacharya. And the whole morality goes on fighting with that which is not. A moralist can never succeed, it is impossible. Finally he has to be defeated – his whole effort is nonsense.

And there is the distinction between religion and morality: morality tries to fight with darkness, and religion tries to awaken the light which is hidden within. It doesn’t bother about the darkness, it simply tries to find the light within. Once the light is there, darkness disappears; once the light is there, you need not do anything to darkness – simply it is not there.

This is the second thing, that nothing can be done to darkness directly. If you want to do something with darkness, you will have to do something with light, not with darkness. Put the light off and the darkness is there; put the light on and the darkness is not there – but you cannot put on and put off darkness; you cannot bring it from somewhere, you cannot push it out. If you want to do something with darkness, you have to go via light, you have to go in an indirect way.

Never fight things which are not. The mind is tempted to fight, but that temptation is dangerous: you will waste your energy and life and dissipate yourself. Don’t be tempted by the mind; simply see whether a thing has a real existence or is just an absence. If it is an absence then don’t fight with it, then seek the thing of which it is the absence – then you will be on the right track.

The third thing about darkness is that it is involved deeply with your existence in many millions of ways.

Whenever you are angry, your light within has disappeared. In fact, you are angry because the light has disappeared, the darkness has entered. You can be angry only when you are unconscious, you cannot be angry consciously. Try it: either you will lose consciousness and anger will be there, or you will remain conscious and anger will not arise – you cannot be angry consciously. What does it mean? It means the nature of consciousness is just like light, and the nature of anger is just like darkness – you cannot have both. If the light is there, you cannot have darkness; if you are conscious, you cannot be angry.

People come to me continuously and ask how not to be angry. They are asking a wrong question – and when you ask a wrong question it is very difficult to get the right answer. First ask the right question. Don’t ask how to dispel darkness, don’t ask how to dispel worries, anguish, anxiety; just analyze your mind and see why they are there in the first place. They are there because you are not conscious enough. So ask the right question: How to be more and more conscious? If you ask how not to be angry, you will become the victim of some moralist. And if you ask the question how to be more conscious, so anger cannot exist, so lust cannot exist, so greed cannot exist, then you are on the right track, then you will become a religious seeker.

Morality is a false coin; it deceives people. It is not religion at all. Religion has nothing to do with morality, because religion has nothing to do with darkness. It is a positive effort to awaken you. It does not bother about your character; what you do is meaningless and you cannot change it. You may decorate it, you cannot change it. You may color it in beautiful ways, you may paint it, but you cannot change it.

There is only one transformation, only one revolution, and that revolution comes not by being concerned with your character, by your acts, by your doings, but being concerned with your BEING. Being is a positive phenomenon; once the being is alert, awake, conscious, suddenly darkness disappears – your being is of the nature of light.

And the fourth thing… then we can enter the sutra. Sleep is just like darkness. It is not accidental that you find it difficult to sleep when there is light; it is simply natural. Darkness has an affinity with sleep; that’s why it is easy to sleep in the night. Darkness all around creates the milieu in which you can fall into sleep very easily.

What happens in sleep? You lose consciousness by and by. There comes an interval period in which you dream. Dreaming means half-conscious, half-unconscious; just on the midway, moving towards total unconsciousness; from your waking state you are moving to total unconsciousness. On the path dreams exist. Dreams mean only that you are half-awake and half-asleep. That’s why, if you dream continuously the whole night, you feel tired in the morning. And if you are not allowed to dream, then too you will feel tired – because dreams exist for a certain reason.

In your waking hours you accumulate many things: thoughts, feelings, incomplete matters hang in the mind. You looked at a beautiful woman on the road and suddenly a desire arose in you. But you are a man of character, manners, civilized; you simply push it down, you will not look at it, you will go on with your work – an incomplete desire hangs around you. It has to be completed, otherwise you will not be able to fall into deep sleep. It will pull you back again and again. It will say, “Come up! That woman was really beautiful, her body had a charm. And you are a fool, what are you doing here? Seek her – you have missed an opportunity!”

The desire hanging there will not allow you to fall into sleep. The mind creates a dream: again you are on the road, the beautiful woman passes, but this time you are alone without any civilization around you. No manners are needed, no etiquette is needed. You are like an animal, you are natural, no morality. This is your own private world; no police constable can enter into it, no judge can judge it. You are simply alone; there will not be even a witness. Now you can play with your lust: you will have a sexual dream. That dream completes the hanging desire, then you fall into sleep. But if you continuously dream, then too you will feel tired.

If your dreams are not allowed…. In the United States they have many sleep labs, and they have come to discover this phenomenon: if a person is not allowed to dream, within three weeks he will go mad. If he is awakened again and again whenever he starts dreaming…. There are visible signs. When a person starts dreaming you can awake him. Particularly his eyelids start fluttering fast; that means he is seeing a dream. When he is not seeing a dream his eyelids rest, because when he starts seeing a dream his eyes are functioning. Awake him and do this the whole night – whenever he starts dreaming, awake him. Within three weeks he will go mad.

Sleep doesn’t seem to be so necessary. If you awake a person… whenever he is not dreaming awake him: he will feel tired, but he will not go mad. What does it mean? It means dreams are a necessity for you. You are such… you are so illusory, your whole existence is such an illusion – what Hindus have called maya – that dreams are needed. Without dreams you cannot exist: dreams are your food, dreams are your strength, without dreams you will go mad. Dreams are a release of madness, and once the release happens you fall into sleep.

From waking you fall into dreaming and from dreaming you fall into sleep. Every night a normal person has eight cycles of dreaming, and just a few moments between two dreaming cycles he has of deep sleep. In that deep sleep all consciousness disappears, it is absolutely dark. But still you are near the boundary, any emergency will awake you. The house is on fire, you will have to run back to your waking consciousness; or you are a mother and the child starts crying, you will run, rush, towards waking – so you remain on the boundary. You fall into deep darkness, but remain on the boundary.

In death you fall exactly to the center. Death and sleep are similar, the quality is the same. In sleep, every day, you fall into darkness, complete darkness; that means you completely become unconscious, the very opposite pole of buddhahood. A buddha is totally awakened, and every night you fall to total unawakened state, absolute darkness.

In the Gita, Krishna says to Arjuna that when everybody is fast asleep, the yogi is still awake. That doesn’t mean that he never sleeps: he sleeps, but only his body sleeps, his body rests. He has no dreams because he has no desires, so he cannot have incomplete desires. And he has no sleep like you – even in deepest rest his consciousness is clear, his consciousness burns like a flame.

Every night you fall into sleep, you fall into deep unconsciousness, a coma. In death you fall in a deeper coma. These are all like darkness. That’s why you are afraid of darkness, because it is deathlike. And there are people who are afraid of sleep also, because sleep is also deathlike.

I have come across many people who cannot sleep, and they want to sleep. And when I tried to understand their mind, I came to realize that they are basically afraid. They say they would like to sleep because they feel tired, but deep down they are afraid of sleep – and that is creating the whole trouble. Ninety percent insomnia is fear of sleep; you are afraid. You are afraid of darkness; you will be afraid of sleep also, and the fear comes from the fear of death.

Once you understand that these are all darknesses and your inner nature is that of light, things start changing. Then there is no sleep for you, only rest; then there is no death for you, only a change of clothes, of bodies, only a change of garments. But that can happen if you realize the inner flame, your nature, your innermost being.

-Osho

From Tantra: The Supreme Understanding, Chapter Three

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