Questions: Exposing your way from ignorance to innocence
THE FIRST TIME I MET YOU, I SAID "NO" TO YOUR QUESTION AS TO WHETHER I HAD A QUESTION, AND IN ALL THESE EIGHT YEARS I HAVE NEVER ASKED ANY.
NOW MY MIND SEEMS TO BE EXPLODING WITH QUESTIONS, OUT OF WHICH IT IS HARD TO CHOOSE ANY SATISFYING TO A GERMAN PERFECTIONIST; YET I FEEL ALMOST IN PANIC -- I DON'T WANT TO MISS THAT CHANCE.
OSHO, WHY IS THERE THAT CONSTANT FEAR OF MISSING THE TRAIN?
There are people who really do not have questions.
They have a quest, but not questions. They have a thirst, a deep hunger for being and more being, but no desire for gathering and accumulating knowledge. Hence they don't have any questions.
They are the best kind of disciples.
There are other people who do not ask questions, but that does not mean that they don't have questions. They do not ask because asking a question goes against their ego.
And if the ego is German, then the problem becomes more difficult.
It is not coincidental that Germany has produced great philosophers, philosophers who are ready to give answers to every question. But Germany has not produced sincere inquirers, seekers, who are thirsty for the answer. It has not created disciples; it creates only masters, and these masters are only great intellectuals, not mystics.
Germany has contributed much as far as knowledge is concerned -- Hegel, Kant, Feuerbach, Karl Marx -- but it has not contributed a single mystic. In the whole of history, not a single Kabir, not a single Nanak, not a single Farid -- very strange, but it is not coincidental.
The German ego is ready to give the answer, whether it knows or not; but it is very reluctant to ask the question, whether it has the question or not.
The same is your situation. For eight years you have been repressing, perhaps unconsciously, and there is a limit to everything. You can repress only so much, and then a point comes when you are sitting on a volcano. Now your mind is exploding with questions. From where they have come? For eight years they were not there, and suddenly out of nowhere they are creating in you almost a state of insanity -- so many questions that you cannot even find which one is worthy to be asked.
You will have to look backwards: those eight years that you kept them repressed are your responsibility. If you had allowed them to come, in those eight years you might have been completely cleansed of all questions; you might have become a tabula rasa, an innocent child.
But because to ask is to show one's ignorance, you went on repressing. And there is always a hope: somebody else here may ask it, so why expose yourself?
But remember, each person's question has a personality of its own. Even though the words may be the same, the language exactly the same, the phrasing of the question not a bit different, but because the questioner is different, it makes such a difference that it is almost unbridgeable. Each person has grown in a different way, has lived a different life, has passed through different ups and downs. You cannot find another person who has gone through the same experiences. Hence, the question may appear to be the same, but it cannot be the same.
So never wait, thinking that somebody is bound to ask the question and save you the trouble of exposing yourself as ignorant, so you can remain silent, looking wise.
Just not asking the question does not mean that you know. It only means that you are not courageous enough, it only means that you are afraid to show your darker side. But unless you show your disease, unless you say something about it, the physician cannot do anything.
I had a professor friend. He was a great scholar of ancient Sanskrit. Not only was he a scholar of ancient Sanskrit, his mind was also very old and rotten.
He was feeling sick, and as I was coming out of my classroom he told me, "I am feeling very weak and very sick. I don't know what the problem is, but you have to give me a lift and take me to the nearby doctor." So I took him to a friend who was one of the best doctors near the university campus.
Now, in the ancient Indian medicine the patient does not say anything to the physician; that is thought to be insulting. The physician takes the wrist of the patient, checks his pulse; that's all. And he decides what the disease is and he decides what the medicine is going to be.
And the Indian medicine ayurveda has been very proud about it.
So this ancient Sanskrit scholar would not say to the doctor what the problem was. He said, "You are a doctor, you have studied in England, you have got the best education -- you have to find out what my disease is."
The doctor said, "This is strange. I am not a doctor of animals, I am a doctor of human beings. Of course as far as animals are concerned they cannot say what the problem is, so the vet has to find out, to figure out what the donkey is suffering from...."
And sometimes things go very wrong.
I remember one case. One of my neighbors in my village had a donkey, a very good donkey. And suddenly there was some epidemic among donkeys and many donkeys in the town died. The veterinary hospital and its doctors were at a loss what to do because the donkeys could not say what was happening. And they were unable to find out. The disease seemed to be something very new.
My friend was very much afraid for his donkey. He said, "Before anything happens, I want to take all the precautions."
So we both took his donkey -- because I used to sit on his donkey; he was the best in the town -- to the doctor. And the doctor said, "He is not sick at all."
We said, "We know -- and he knows too -- because he was not willing to come this way; we have brought him forcibly. But we want to take precautions. Other donkeys are dying, and this is such a beautiful fellow. So if you can just help; as a precaution give him some medicine so that he is not affected by the epidemic."
He gave us some solution, and also a small bamboo pipe, and he told the man whose donkey it was, "You have to put this medicine in your mouth."
The man said, "What are you saying? A donkey's medicine? -- should I put it in my mouth?"
The vet said, "This is the way it has to be given to the donkey, because the donkey will create a thousand and one troubles. Put the other end of the pipe in the donkey's mouth and blow the medicine into his mouth."
He said, "Strange way...."
But the vet said, "You don't know how to deal with animals."
But an accident happened. When he was about to give the medicine, the donkey did such a great job.... He blew such a forceful breath from his mouth that the man drank all the medicine! And he said, "Now what is going to happen? This was a freak accident, and this idiot... at the right time, just as I was going to give the medicine, he managed to force it into my body. Now let us go back to the doctor. It may have some bad effects on me -- it was a precaution for the donkey, not a precaution for me."
I said, "Now I cannot go, you can go."
This Sanskrit scholar wanted to be told by the doctor what was wrong just by having his pulse checked.
The doctor said, "I know that in ayurveda this has been the ancient method, but at that time there were no other instruments. At that time people were not so intelligent and aware and sensitive to their own bodies, feelings. They were coming almost from the world of animals. When ayurveda was born, human beings were just emerging out of the animal kingdom; that's why feeling the pulse was the only way."
But the scholar was not satisfied. He said, "The reality is that you are not so proficient in the subtle vibrations of the pulse rate. You are not ready to acknowledge your ignorance."
I said to him, "You have not come here to discuss whether ayurveda is a better medical system than modern medicine. You have come here for your own sickness. Don't waste my time, and don't waste the time of the doctor -- he is not ignorant. No modern medical practitioner is going to tell you your disease, you have to tell him. And man has come of age."
You can sit here silently for eight years without asking a question, just hiding yourself behind silence -- which is not true silence, because inside the questions are boiling.
But the German mind is not ready to accept easily that it is ignorant.
It is good that now you are ready -- because your mind is exploring its questions -- that you are not afraid you will be understood as ignorant.
Nobody is going to understand you as ignorant.
Ignorance is our natural state, there is nothing wrong with it. Just as everybody is naked behind the clothes -- however thick your clothes are, however many layers of clothes you have, your nakedness is still there. There is nothing in it to be ashamed of.
Naked we are born, ignorant we are born.
And it will be helpful to recognize the fact of ignorance sooner, so that you will not die ignorant.
Ignorant we are born, but if we can die innocent, life has been a successful journey.
And the only way to be innocent is to get rid of all your questions.
Don't hide anything, because whatever you are hiding will come up sooner or later, will surface. It is better to bring it out yourself into the open, into the light.
And the function of a master is not to give you an answer, but to destroy your question.
Nobody can give you the answer.
The answer will arise in you, will grow in you. It will be your growth, your enlightenment. It cannot be given from outside.
But questions can be destroyed.
So it is good that you have started, even though you have wasted eight years unnecessarily. And that's why your mind is continuously worried and scared of only one thing: Am I going to miss the train this time? Eight years you have been missing, every day, every moment.
But there are a few people who are very expert in missing trains.
I have heard that three persons, all professors of a university, were standing on the platform. The train was getting ready to leave -- two had come to see one off -- and they were involved in deep discussion.
Suddenly, the conductor shows the flag and the train starts, and they are so absorbed that they don't notice. They notice only when the train has almost left the platform. So they all three run to catch it -- two succeed, and one fails. And the one who fails starts laughing.
A crowd gathers; they say, "What is the matter?"
But he is laughing so much, a belly laughter, that he cannot contain himself.
He says, "Just wait a minute.... I have missed the train."
They say, "But missing a train does not mean that you have to laugh."
He said, "You don't know the whole story -- just wait: the two who have caught the train came to see me off! But in a hurry...."
There are people who are always missing. Missing becomes their habit for their whole life.
Each moment -- you have to be alert not to miss it.
But you are not there, you are somewhere else. Naturally you go on missing.
You will think of this moment when it is gone. You will say, "My God, I missed that opportunity."
Henry Ford was asked by a journalist, "What is the secret of your success?" -- because he was a poor man, born poor, and became the richest man in the world.
Ford said, "My secret is simple, it is an open secret: I never miss an opportunity."
But the journalist said, "It still remains a mystery. Nobody wants to miss an opportunity, but people go on missing. So tell me just in a little detail how you manage -- because people become aware of an opportunity only when it is gone, but by that time it is too late."
Henry Ford said, "The way not to miss an opportunity is just to keep jumping. So whenever it comes, it doesn't matter, you will jump and ride on it. Don't stand and wait; otherwise you will get engaged in other thoughts and other things.
"I keep on jumping. Let the opportunity come whenever it comes -- I am not going to miss it."
In a London museum there is a beautiful painting titled "Opportunity." A very strange painting.... When for the first time, a century ago, it was acquired by the museum, the painter himself was alive and he was present there for the opening ceremony. The museum had asked him to be there to explain it to people -- because it is a beautiful painting but a little difficult, a little strange.
There is the face of a man, but you have never come across such a face: all the hairs are growing not on the head but on the forehead, and the head is clean-shaven. And the title is "Opportunity."
"What kind of man... where have you found this man?"
He said, "This is the opportunity. When it comes you cannot see it, because the face is covered with hair. When it is just passing by, you cannot see it because the face is covered and by the time you recognize it and say, `Jesus!'... your hand slips! -- because the head is clean-shaven. It has gone. And no moment comes back; once gone, it is gone forever."
You are afraid of missing the train.
Whether you are afraid or not, everybody is missing the train. It is good that you are afraid, because that may help you to understand why you are missing.
You are not in the moment. You are either in the past or in the future -- both are non- existent. Neither can you do anything with the past, nor can you do anything with the future. All that you can do is with the present, and the present is such a small, split second that if you are engaged somewhere else, it simply slips by and you have missed the train.
Learn to be in the present.
Withdraw your energy from the past. Don't waste your time in memories; what is gone is gone -- say goodbye to it and close the chapter.
What has not come yet has not come yet; don't unnecessarily waste your time and energy in imagination, because no imagination is ever fulfilled. It is because of this that the proverb exists in every language: "Man proposes, and God disposes" -- because you imagine a certain thing in the future, and it is never so.
Withdrawing yourself from past and future, you will become a tremendously intense energy, focused in the present, concentrated in the present like an arrow. No train could manage to leave the platform without you.
Each moment being aware, alert, watchful, in the herenow, is the way not to miss the train. Every experience needs your presence here, this moment.
And this is a simple secret, but it opens the doors of existence, of all the mysteries, of all that is worth knowing, worth tasting, worth feeling, worth being.
IT IS SUCH A JOY SEEKING OUT A QUESTION -- IT COMES WORD BY WORD AND SURPRISES ME AS IT APPEARS ON THE PAPER.
BEING HERE WITH YOU HAS BEEN MORE MOMENT-TO-MOMENT AND LESS PLAN-FILLED THAN ANY OTHER TIME IN MY LIFE.
THE QUESTION IS: WHERE DO THESE QUESTIONS COME FROM? HOW DOES SEEKING THEM OUT EMPTY OUR MINDS AND CLEANSE OUR BEINGS?
I LOVE YOU BEYOND MY UNDERSTANDING. THANK YOU AGAIN AND AGAIN.
We are born not knowing anything.
Questions don't come from outside.
As you grow, as you face different situations, as you move into different moments, encountering different circumstances, your ignorance goes on and on becoming questions.
These are the right questions.
And if you insist on asking only the right questions, which come out of your ignorance in encountering existence, you will be able to get rid of them without any difficulty.
The problem arises because you have many questions which are not right questions, which have not arisen out of your ignorance but which have arisen out of your borrowed knowledge. You read something in a book and a question arises; if you had not read the book, the question would have never arisen, you may have lived from eternity to eternity.
For example, I have been around the world, but except for a follower of Jainism -- who are not many, only three and a half million, and confined only to India -- nobody can ask a question that a Jaina can ask. Only a Jaina can ask it, because his scriptures give him the question. The question is not a right question; otherwise, if it was a natural question, it would arise in every human being.
For example, you may never have wondered what nigod is. Only a Jaina will ask what nigod is. And for Jainism it is a very important question; it is as important as God is to other religions -- in fact, it is a replacement for God, because Jainism does not believe in God. Then the question arises: from where does this universe come?
Jainism has a simple, scientific answer to it: the universe does not come from anywhere, it is always here. But one problem gets them into trouble, because the population goes on growing: From where do these people come if nobody is creating them?
In Mahavira's time, there were only two million people in India -- just in India. Now there are seven hundred million people in India. From where are these people coming?
Where have they been hiding all this time? Who is managing the whole circus? -- when they should come and not come, why they should come at a particular time and not come at a particular time.
Jainism has to invent a hypothesis. The hypothesis is called nigod; nigod is a dormant state of human souls. Just as you go to sleep and in the morning you wake up, there are millions of souls who are sleeping for eternity; from those dormant souls a few wake up and start moving into existence.
But all such hypotheses are as dubitable as God.
I have asked Jaina monks how many souls are dormant -- because there will be one day when nigod is empty, all souls will have awakened. Then the population will remain static; there will be no need for any birth control. Whatever you do, you cannot produce a child. But they don't have any answer. They say, "We don't know. The scriptures say an infinite number of souls."
I said, "This is just befooling people. Who has counted them? Who has the right to say that they are infinite? This can be said only when they have been counted. If they have been counted, they are not infinite. Do you see a simple logic? If you say they have been counted, then they may be many but they cannot be infinite. And if you say they have not been counted, you cannot say they are infinite."
But nobody in the whole world is ever going to ask, "What is nigod?" This is a false question, it is a bookish question.
Now, Jainas never ask about God. All over the world, every other religion will ask about God because they have been told about God from their very childhood. And naturally, curiosity arises: What is God? How does he look?
Strangely enough, different religions have different ideas of God, and nobody bothers that God cannot have so many appearances unless he has many masks. He shows one face to the Christians, another face to the Jews, another face to the Hindus... but why should he take such trouble? And none of these fellows who are talking about God have seen him.
But centuries have passed, and people are discussing and inquiring and questioning, and all questions concerned with such things are absolutely futile.
"How many hands does God have?" Now, is this a question that really means anything to you? -- whether he has two hands or four hands or one thousand hands? What does it matter to you? But there are people who believe that God has one thousand hands, because to take care of this big world, two hands are not enough. But who says to you that one thousand hands will be enough? The world is still big. If two hands are too few, one thousand hands are also too few.
And just think of a god who has one thousand hands....
I think two hands can do things in a better way than a person who has one thousand hands. He is bound to get confused.
And to carry one thousand hands... the weight of one thousand hands will be too much.
There was one very famous Hindu monk, Swami Shivananda, who became world famous. Seeing him, I dropped the idea of one thousand hands -- because he was not able even to carry his two hands. His hands became so fat that he was not able to raise them.
Two persons used to raise his hands, then he would be able to move; otherwise those hands were so much of a weight.... And nobody even thinks -- because he was a medical doctor before he became a mahatma -- first, medically he is living a wrong life; otherwise how have these hands become so heavy? Secondly -- he is thought to be a great yogi -- according to yoga he is living a wrong life; otherwise how have these hands gone out of proportion? And still he is worshipped as a great saint.
When I saw him, I said to him, "One thing is settled in my mind, that God cannot have one thousand hands. Seeing you... you need two persons to carry you from one place to another place. If you had one thousand hands, it would really be a great trouble."
Perhaps trucks would have been needed; Suraj Prakash would have to be called -- "Bring all your transport, Swami Shivananda is going to the bathroom" -- because how would he go? One hand in one truck... at least one thousand trucks would be needed. And for the transport company it would be a problem: how to manage one thousand trucks around him? There would be a parking problem....
But just hypotheses... and there are thousands of things which have kept human beings engaged in creating questions.
And there are always so-called wise people who are ready to answer them. They are the enemies of humanity. Rather than saying that your question is wrong because it has no relevance to your growth, it has no relevance to your own spirituality, that whether God exists or not does not matter, or how many heads he has....
The Hindu god has three heads. No other god in the world has three heads; naturally he is superior. He can look in three dimensions; a three-dimensional god, in all dimensions he is looking. Other gods are one-dimensional.
You cannot cheat a Hindu god, but a Mohammedan god or a Christian god -- you can hit him from the back, he cannot see. The Hindu god you cannot hit. Three heads, one thousand hands... if you got caught in his hands, it would take eternity to get out of the jungle.
All useless, fictitious, meaningless things are in the air, and they have been there for centuries. They create many questions in you.
So you have to remember one very basic thing: that any question that is not concerned with your individual growth has no meaning, no substance for you. Only then can you sort out those few questions which can be of help.
And then ask them, then expose yourself. Then don't wait a single moment -- and don't hesitate, don't feel embarrassed. It is your right to ask the question. It is nature demanding that you ask the question, because once the question is solved -- or better, DISsolved -- you will feel light, your heaviness will be gone.
The day you don't have any question will be a day of great celebration, because you will be as light as you can conceive.
And then existence becomes just a pure dance -- no more questions.
Existence becomes a trust -- no more questions.
There are no more tensions in the mind -- life becomes a let-go, a tremendous relaxation.
You become part of the trees and the mountains and the ocean and the river and the stars; you are no longer separate -- your questions keep you separate.
Your unquestionable trust in existence allows you to merge into it.
GOVIND SIDDHARTH'S ENLIGHTENMENT SHOWED ME THAT I AM NOT CONNECTED WITH ENLIGHTENMENT AT ALL. I CANNOT IMAGINE HOW I WOULD FEEL BEING ENLIGHTENED. I REALIZED HOW FAR AWAY IT IS FOR ME, AND THAT I AM NOT REALLY SEEKING IT.
CONCERNING MYSELF, I HAVE MOSTLY FORGOTTEN ABOUT THE STATE CALLED ENLIGHTENMENT. I SEE THAT I AM ONLY LONGING FOR IT WHEN I AM IN A STATE OF PAIN, AND FEEL LOST, AND DON'T KNOW ANY MORE WHAT TO DO. BUT IN MOMENTS OF HAPPINESS AND FULFILLMENT, ENLIGHTENMENT DOES NOT EXIST AT ALL.
WOULD YOU PLEASE COMMENT ON THIS?
Lokita, enlightenment is absolutely un-Germanic.
I have gone through all the great philosophers of Germany; nobody has any idea of enlightenment.
So you need not be worried. It simply shows you are a pure Nordic German, stuck with another German, Niskriya. One German is enough of a hindrance towards enlightenment, and two Germans together... it is impossible. You both will tug at each other's legs and will not allow anybody to become enlightened!
And the idea of enlightenment has arisen because of Govind Siddharth's enlightenment. It is not your longing or your search.
This is what I have been calling borrowed.
If it is not nature that is desiring something in you, a longing coming out of your very soul, out of your very roots, then don't waste time on it.
That's why when you are in pain, in misery, in anguish, you think of enlightenment and when you are happy and contented and enjoying yourself, you never think about it.
In fact, if you are contented, happy and pleasurable and I offer you enlightenment, you will refuse it. You will say, "Bhagwan, when I am in pain I will come myself. Don't disturb my happiness at this moment. It is so difficult to be happy with Niskriya, and now you have come with enlightenment...."
Remember: anything that comes out of pain and anguish and anxiety is at the most an effort to escape from all these painful experiences.
Hearing again and again that enlightenment is blissful, you think that rather than suffering pain it is better to be enlightened. But when you are contented and feeling happy, joyful, no fight with Niskriya -- because I know perfectly well that two Germans in one room must be fighting twenty-three hours a day at least. For one hour, naturally, they need rest and contentment. At that time if somebody comes and says, "Come on -- and this is enlightenment," you will say, "No, not at this time; I have hardly got one hour of peace and you have come to disturb that peace also."
You have to understand one thing: that enlightenment is not an escape from pain but an understanding of pain, an understanding of your anguish, an understanding of your misery -- not a cover-up, not a substitute, but a deep insight: "Why am I miserable, why is there so much anxiety, why is there so much anguish, what are the causes in me that are creating it?" And to see those causes clearly is to be free from them.
Just an insight into your misery brings a freedom from misery. And what remains is enlightenment.
Enlightenment is not something that comes to you. It is when pain and misery and anguish and anxiety have been understood perfectly well and they have evaporated because now they have no cause to exist in you -- that state is enlightenment.
It will bring you, for the first time, real contentment, real blissfulness, authentic ecstasy.
And only then can you compare.
What you used to call `contentment' before was not contentment. What you used to call `happiness' before was not happiness.
But right now you don't have anything to compare it with.
Once enlightenment gives you a taste of the real, you will see that all your pleasures, all your happinesses were simply the stuff dreams are made of; they were not real. And what has come now, has come forever.
That is the definition of the real: a contentment that comes and never leaves you again is real contentment. A contentment that comes and goes again is not contentment, it is simply a gap between two miseries.
Just as we call a gap between two wars `peace time' -- it is not a peaceful time, it is simply preparation for another war. If the war is a positive war, the time between two wars is a negative war, a cold war. It goes on underground, you are getting ready for a hot war.
Anything that comes and goes is a dream.
Let that be the definition.
Anything that comes and never goes is reality.
Don't be bothered about the word `enlightenment.' What you call it does not matter; you can call it illumination, you can call it blissfulness, you can call it self-realization, you can call it actualization of all your potentials -- whatever you want to call it.
But remember one quality: that it knows only a beginning, it knows no end. Anything that comes and goes, beware -- that is simply illusory, it is only a gap, because one gets tired.
Niskriya also gets tired, and when one is tired one thinks, "Just be loving, be peaceful."
So for an hour or two hours there is love, but it does not last long; just a small thing, anything, and the quarrel begins. And every other day you are ready to separate. Just look in one week how many times you decide to separate.
You don't know, I have been keeping you together. Niskriya is a very obedient follower. I tell him, "Niskriya, just let things be as they are. One woman is absolutely needed for your enlightenment; just remain...."
And the same is true for you: he is needed for your enlightenment.
Separately -- because there will be no fight, no anxiety, no pain -- you may start thinking that life is perfectly peaceful, what is the need of enlightenment? And it will not be peace; it will be the peace of the graveyard.
I want the peace of the garden, not of the graveyard. The birds should be singing, because their songs deepen the peace. The flowers should be blossoming because their colors, their fragrance make the peace alive -- the foliage, the greenery, everything is overflowing with life.
In a graveyard also there is silence and there is peace, because everybody is dead. They are waiting for the last judgment day; then they will come out of their graves and you will see such a quarrel as you have never seen, not imagined. Because lying in their graveyards, they are repressing everything, and when they come out... just skeletons hitting each other!
You will see the scene, the last judgment day: nobody will bother who is hitting whom, just hitting will be such a joy. So much is repressed -- because somebody has been in the grave for thousands of years. Just think of yourself in a grave for thousands of years: how much anger you must be gathering! -- it will explode in just one day, in twenty-four hours. More time is not given; perhaps God is afraid to give more time. Because if you give more time, that quarrel will never end; it will continue. So finish it in twenty-four hours.
And in twenty-four hours in that crowd you cannot find your enemy or where your wife is, where your neighbor is. So don't waste time -- whoever you meet, hit him hard!
Somebody must be hitting your wife, so you hit somebody else's wife; it does not matter, the question is of hitting.
There is a peace in the graveyard. If people live separately.... And that's what religions have thought: renounce the world and go into the caves, and there will be peace. It will be the peace of the graveyard, your cave will be your grave. Because there is nobody to provoke you, nobody to insult you. Just being alone, what can you do except be silent?
But that is not the peace that passeth understanding, that is a deadness, a suicide.
Try to understand your misery. Live it, go to the very depth of it, find out the cause, why it is there.
Let understanding be your meditation.
And try to understand your contentment also, your happiness also, and you will see their superficiality.
Once you know that your happiness is superficial and your anguish is very deep -- and it is in your hands -- you can change your whole style of consciousness.
Your contentment can become your whole being; not even a small space is left for discontentment.
Your love becomes your very life. And it remains. Time passes, but what you have achieved goes on deepening. More and more flowers, more and more songs are born out of it.
That's what we call enlightenment.
The word is Eastern, but the experience has nothing to do with East or West.
I HAVE A STORY TO TELL:
IT HAPPENED IN THE EARLY SECOND HALF OF THE MONTH OF JUNE, 1985, WHEN I WAS LIVING IN RAJNEESHPURAM.
ONE MORNING, SOON AFTER I WOKE, I TOOK A PEE IN THE BATHROOM, AND FELT A TIDAL WAVE OF RELAXATION DESCENDING ON ME AS IT SOMETIMES HAPPENS IN THE LAST STAGE OF YOUR MEDITATION TECHNIQUES. THE RELAXATION WAS ALL OVER ME, AND MY EYELIDS CLOSED GENTLY AND INSTANTLY. I COULDN'T MOVE OR STOP THIS TIDAL WAVE FEELING.
AS MY EYES CLOSED, YOU APPEARED IN ALL YOUR BEAUTY. YOUR PHYSICAL PRESENCE WAS SO REAL AND INTOXICATING -- AS ONE SEES AND FEELS YOU IN A DARSHAN, SITTING IN THE FIRST ROW. BUT IN A MOMENT YOU STARTED DISAPPEARING, BEGINNING FROM ALL SIDES OF YOUR BODY, AND A DEEP BLACKNESS STARTED TAKING YOUR PLACE.
SOON ALL THAT WAS LEFT WAS A DEEP, DEEP BLACKNESS OF A KIND I HAVE NEVER SEEN BEFORE. IT GAVE A FEELING OF TERROR, AND LASTED FOR A COUPLE OF MINUTES.
AS I CAME OUT OF THIS EXPERIENCE I WAS STUNNED, DAZED, ALMOST DRAINED. I WAS FULL OF A DEEP INNER PAIN; I WAS VERY SHAKY AND UPSET, AS THE MEANING THAT SOMEHOW HAD REVEALED ITSELF TO ME WAS IN THE IMPACT OF THE EXPERIENCE. IT MEANT PHYSICAL DEATH TO YOUR BODY, OR AT LEAST A DEATH-LIKE CALAMITY.
I TRIED TO FORCE MYSELF TO BE NORMAL, BUT COULDN'T TALK TO PEOPLE. WHEN MY FRIEND NOTICED I WAS DISTURBED, AND ASKED ME THE REASON, I TOLD HER OF THE INCIDENT. I CONTINUED TO FEEL THAT SOMETHING GRAVE WAS PEEPING OVER THE HORIZON.
IN THE LATE AFTERNOON WHEN I WAS WORKING, SUDDENLY OUT OF NOWHERE A DEEP TIDAL WAVE OF RELAXATION OVERPOWERED ME AGAIN. MY EYES CLOSED AND A BRIGHT PURPLE COLOR APPEARED ALL OVER IN FRONT OF ME, AMIDST WHICH YOU APPEARED AGAIN IN YOUR FULLEST GLORY, BEAMING. BEAUTIFUL FLOWERS WERE POPPING OPEN ALL AROUND YOU LIKE BUBBLES -- IT WAS PSYCHEDELIC! I FELT NOW FULLY ASSURED THAT NO REAL HARM WAS GOING TO COME TO YOUR BODY. WHATEVER CALAMITIES CAME WOULD PASS AWAY, AND A MORE- GLORIOUS-THAN-EVER PHASE FOR YOU AND YOUR PEOPLE WOULD FOLLOW.
IN THE LATER MONTHS A GREAT CALAMITY DID COME TO YOUR BODY IN THE FORM OF YOUR ILLEGAL ARREST BY THE POWER-BLINDED U.S.
GOVERNMENT -- WHICH WAS A PHYSICAL THREAT TO YOUR LIFE. NOW, IN THE LIGHT OF THE FIRST PART OF MY STORY TURNING INTO A REALITY, IT IS QUITE NATURAL FOR ME TO FEEL THAT THE SECOND PART OF THE STORY HAS ALREADY STARTED TURNING INTO A REALITY, SLOWLY SLOWLY.
BELOVED MASTER, WOULD YOU LIKE TO COMMENT?
Pratap, you have related your story with absolutely the right interpretation.
It needs no comment.
This is a good sign. Slowly slowly, to other sannyasins also, the same is going to happen.
They will come to feel an experience, and they will also be able to interpret it correctly.
I can only say you are blessed that your mind has not interfered, has not misled you, and your heart has been in complete control seeing the experience and interpreting it.
A GLIMPSE OF YOUR EYES, A FLASH OF TOTAL LOVE -- IT HAPPENS IN A SECOND BUT STAYS FOREVER.
OSHO, HOW COULD THIS HAPPEN?
It is a simple phenomenon.
A moment of love is a moment of eternity. The depth of it is so great that time cannot erase it.
Although the happening was in a single moment, it is like a woman becoming pregnant:
the happening is in a single moment, but it gives birth to a child who may live seventy, eighty years, who may give birth to many more children. It may become a tree: many branches, and each branch bifurcating into new branches.
I am reminded.... If you go to Bodh Gaya, where Gautam Buddha became enlightened, the tree under which he was sitting is still there, although it is not the same tree but the continuity of the same tree, a child of the same tree.
When Ashoka was the emperor of India, he sent his daughter Sanghamitra, who had become a sannyasin, to Sri Lanka with a branch of the original tree. Sri Lanka was converted by Sanghamitra to the ideology of Gautam Buddha, and the branch was planted there and became a big tree.
Here, after Gautam Buddha, a strange tragedy happened: Buddhism disappeared from India, and Hindus burned the tree under which Gautam Buddha had become enlightened.
It was only when India became independent just forty years ago that a branch from Sri Lanka was brought back.
Now you see a beautiful tree again flourishing in Bodh Gaya -- although it is not the same tree, but it is the same tree.
A moment of deep love goes so deep in your being that time cannot erase it. It goes on and on giving birth to itself within you.
Hence I say that a moment of love is a moment of eternity.
MOST OF HUMANITY LIVES TO EAT AND SLEEP, WORK, ACCUMULATE POWER AND MONEY, OR TO PROPOGATE ITSELF.
BELOVED MASTER, WHAT DO YOU LIVE FOR?
Milarepa, I will tell you a real historical fact:
In Greece, there was a great philosopher, Xeno. He lived a long life -- in those days it was really very long, because the average life in those days was not more than twenty- five years. Xeno lived ninety years.
And he is a strange philosopher, unique in a sense, because his teaching is that life is meaningless; so meaningless that any man of intelligence would commit suicide, that is the only intelligent act you can do.
So many of his disciples committed suicide, went on committing suicide. Ninety years long, thousands of disciples -- and he was a very convincing man. What he was saying was so accurate, because ordinary life is certainly so meaningless -- unless you know to change it into a divine phenomenon, it is meaningless.
And he was a great logician; he argued and convinced people, and people committed suicide, young people committed suicide.
When he was dying, somebody asked, "Xeno, one thing has always disturbed us.
According to your philosophy, thousands of people have committed suicide. Why have you gone on living?"
He said, "It was just to teach people to commit suicide; otherwise who will do my job? I had to live."
Milarepa, people are living absolutely meaningless lives.
I also teach them a kind of suicide -- not exactly the same as Xeno. I teach them a suicide in which they are reborn in a more luminous life, of a greater glory, of a divine ecstasy.
I have to live because it would be absolutely unkind, knowing the path of transformation and not telling it to the people who need it.