The way of religion
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A CRYSTALLIZED SELF AND A BIG, STRONG EGO?
THEY LOOK ALIKE, but they are as different as two things can be. Not only different, they are diametrically opposite. The crystallized self is not a self at all. It is called a crystallized "self," but it is not a self at all. And the big, strong ego is neither big nor strong. It is very hollow; how can it be strong? It is very empty; how can it be strong? And how can it be big? It is neither big nor strong, but it has the selfhood in it, the "I-amness," the feeling that "I am."
The ego is the self. The real self is not a self at all. We develop the ego just to hide the fact that we don't know who we are. It is very hard to see that we are so ignorant about ourselves, that we don't know. To hide this ignorance, we create the ego. Ego is a deception. It is a deception that you are giving to yourself. It is really difficult to live without self-knowing, so we create a false ego. It gives a little consolation. One starts feeling that one knows who one is.
It simply hides ignorance; that's why all the religions insist on dropping the ego. When you drop the ego and you face your inner being, the vastness of it is such that you cannot define it as "I am." The vastness is so much that it cannot be contained within any concept. You cannot call it "I." It is all; how can you call it "I"? The real self, the real inner being, is God himself; it is all.
But one has to face it. In the beginning, when you face it, it looks as if it is nothing. That is the fear.
The all looks like nothing in the first encounter. If you get in tune with it, by and by the negativity disappears and you start feeling the positive existence of it. Then it becomes your soul call it "God,"
"being," or any word that you want to choose - call it "enlightenment," "awareness." But one thing is certain: you are not there. Something is there - tremendously vital, infinite - but you are not there.
This will look like a paradox: when you come to know yourself you are not there; when you don't know yourself you are there. You exist only in your ignorance. When knowledge has happened - when KNOWING has happened - you disappear. You disappear like darkness - just as when the sun rises the darkness disappears. You disappear like darkness when awareness arises. The awareness does not belong to you; it has nothing to do with you. In fact you are the barrier for it. It is because of you that it is not arising.
People come to me and they say, "Osho, I would like to become enlightened." I say to them, "It is very difficult, it is impossible. I cannot help you." They say, "Why? Why can't you help?" I say, "From the very beginning you are putting such a condition: you say, 'I want to become enlightened.' This 'I' is the barrier. This 'I' is not allowing you to know your enlightenment - which is already there. The 'I' never becomes enlightened; the 'I' is the unenlightened state. The 'I' is the darkness."
Enlightenment is possible, but it will be possible only when you are ready to lose yourself. That is the meaning of Jesus' saying when he says, "If you lose, you will gain. If you don't lose, you will lose." In losing is the gain. In forgetting is the remembrance. In dissolving, you become crystallized.
The crystallized self is a no-self, it is all; and the big, strong ego is very tiny, not big at all. The tiniest thing in the world is the ego, and the hollowest thing in the world is the ego, and the weakest thing in the world is the ego; because it is the falsest thing possible. It exists not; it is a pretension.
PLEASE WILL YOU EXPLAIN TO ME WHAT "THE WAY OF RELIGION" MEANS? I HAVE ALWAYS BEEN SO STRONGLY AGAINST RELIGION THAT I CANNOT IMAGINE WHAT IT MEANS. BUT, ANYHOW, I SUPPOSE IT IS THE WAY OF TOTAL ALONENESS. AND THIS MAKES ME A LITTLE UNEASY.
SINCE YOU GAVE ME SANNYAS, I FEEL LIKE I AM IN AN ABYSS. OTHER PEOPLE ARE NOT REACHABLE FOR ME; I AM ONLY FIXED UP TO THE FIRE OF YOUR EYES - A TREMENDOUS POONA FICTION STORY.
Right, I am creating a fiction here: the fiction of the Master and the disciple, the fiction of the god and the devotee. It is really a myth, but very alive. And there is no way to come to the truth unless you pass through a great mythology. Man is lost in lies. From lies there is no direct way to truth. Myth is a bridge between the lie and the truth. A myth partakes of something of the lie and something of the truth; it is a bridge.
Yes, you are right. This is a tremendous Poona fiction story. Whatsoever is happening here is very fictitious - these people in orange, and so many crazy things going on, and I am supporting you and leading you towards nowhere and promising you things which cannot be promised.
Man lives in lies, God lives in the truth; but how to bridge both? Man is a lie, God is a truth; how to bridge both? It is very impossible. Myth is the way - fiction, yes, a spiritual fiction. All the religions are fictitious, all the mythologies are fictitious, but they are of tremendous help. A mythology has something of the truth in it - maybe just a reflection - and something of the lie in it. You can move through the myth towards truth.
And if an alive myth is available, don't miss it, because a dead myth loses all contact with truth.
It becomes a lie. That's why religion has to be born again and again. When Jesus is alive, the Christian myth is alive. Then people traveled through that myth and reached to truth. Jesus gone:
the myth is there but the truth is gone. When myth is there and Jesus is no longer there, the other shore is missing; then it is again just a lie, just a fiction - with no grounding in the truth.
Christianity is a lie; Jesus is a myth.
Krishna is a myth; Hinduism is a lie.
That's why down through the centuries it has always been emphasized that if you can find an alive Master, don't miss the opportunity. An alive Master is a myth - something of the untrue and something of the true, both. Something of the untrue means something of the human, and something of the true means something of the divine. That's why the Gospel says Jesus is the son of man AND the son of God. This is a myth. Being the son of man and the son of God is an impossibility, but that's what a myth is: God and man meeting, son of God and son of man - something of the lie and something of the truth.
But Jesus gone, then only lies remain. The Pope is not a myth, neither is the Shankaracharya of Puri - dead. They don't speak from their own experience; they speak from tradition.
A myth is a very fragile flower, like a rose flower. In the morning it is there in all its glory - even Solomon will feel jealous - and by the evening it is gone. How fragile, and how strong. In the morning breeze, how strong it was and how beautiful. Even the vast sky must have felt jealous, and even the sun himself must have felt jealous. A rose flower is a rose flower - so small, and yet so beautiful; so fragile, and so vital and so alive, so fragrant. By the evening, the petals have fallen into the earth and the flower is gone.
A Jesus is also fragile, a Buddha also.
While I am here, it is a myth - an alive myth with a heart, beating. Use this opportunity. When I am gone, it will be a lie.
And this is the misery: that by the time people come to know, the flower is gone. When the flower is gone, they will worship for centuries and centuries. They will worship the past, the dead, the grave.
When the flower is alive, they will deny, they will escape, they will protect and defend themselves against it. They may even destroy the flower because the very existence of the flower makes them feel very sad. The very existence of the flower makes them aware of their smallness, their ugliness.
The flower creates a contrast.
Hence they crucify Jesus and poison Socrates and kill Mansur. And then they worship. The same people who kill Jesus will worship him. They will even worship the cross, because Jesus died on the cross. And these are the same people. The murderers and the worshipers are not different. The enemies and the believers are not different. These are the same people - the same human mind and the same human stupidity.
Yes, it is a fiction that I am creating here, but it is alive. That is the difference. While I am here, the myth is an alive bridge; you can pass through it towards the unknown.
The questioner has asked: "What do you mean by 'the way of religion'? I have always been so strongly against religion that I cannot imagine what it means." True. If you are against religion, how can you understand it? If you are FOR religion, then too you cannot understand it. The people who are for and against can never understand because they have decided a priori - without experiencing they have decided. They are prejudiced.
If you have decided God exists, you will never be able to know him. If you have decided God does not exist, how can you know him?
Be more vulnerable. Don't be so prejudiced, don't decide. Experience, and let experience be decisive. Never decide before the experience - never, never. Otherwise you will always be surrounded by your prejudice and your prejudice will become a screen. And that won't allow you to see that which is.
"The way of religion" is the way of truth, the way of nature. The word "religion" comes from a root which means "to tie you together" - RELIGARE. Ordinarily you have fallen apart from existence.
You have forgotten that you are not in rhythm with existence. You have started moving on your own.
You have lost contact with the real. Yon have started living in your imagination. That is what I call the lie. You have started living a private life; you are no longer living an existential life. You have become "idiots." The word "idiot" is beautiful; it comes from a root which means "one who lives a private life." One who has his own idiom of life, that is the idiot. The world is going one way and you are going another: then you are an idiot. The whole existence moving in one way and you have your own private goal!
A man who is after money is an idiot, because the sun is not after money, the moon is not after money, trees are not after money, animals are not after money - rivers, mountains, they are not so idiotic. The whole existence lives without money and a man is mad after money. He suffers from idiocy, the greatest disease there is: he has a private goal. If someday he comes to face God and God asks him, "What were you seeking?" and he says, "Money," God will not be able to understand what he means by "money." He may not ever have heard the word "money." It will be very difficult to explain to him. Some great economist maybe - Adam Smith or Ricardo or Galbraith or somebody - may be able to explain, but I'm suspicious. God will not be able to understand what money is. The whole existence lives without money. Man has created an idiocy.
Or you say, "I was after political power." God will not be able to understand. It will be very difficult to explain it to him, that you wanted to become a minister or a prime minister or a president. He will ask, "For what? Why in the first place should one ever be mad after power? And I have given you all the power that you need. And I have given you all the possibilities to be blissful that you need.
For what were you wasting these opportunities, life?... and sacrificing everything for some foolish, stupid thing - that you would like to sit on a throne?" Just think of your great emperors. How stupid and foolish. But man has created his idiocies.
"The way of religion" means not to be idiotic - don't have any private goal. The universal goal is enough. Be in tune with it, be together with it. Don't fight it; flow with it. Wherever the whole is going, move with it, and you will not have any worry and you will not have any anguish and you will not be split and will not be torn apart. Religion means that which puts you together. You are not torn apart, you are not falling in fragments; you become integrated.
Religion is the science of how to find the forgotten language of ecstasy. Whenever you are in tune with existence, there is ecstasy, there is bliss, there is benediction.
It happens to you too. You may not be aware. Sometimes, looking at the trees, and the greenery fills you: suddenly you are in tune with the trees. You are no longer the observer and the trees are no longer the observed; you are not separate. Something bridges you; suddenly there is a contact, a connectedness, a link. Your mind stops chattering, you are as silent as the tree. You start feeling.
Your heart throbs with a new vitality and a new vibe... and there is bliss. And you are so fulfilled and so contented.
The tree has not given you anything. The tree is very poor in that way. What can a tree give to a human being? It cannot give you money, it cannot give you power. It cannot give anything that you would like to have, but suddenly, just sitting by the side of the tree, leaning against it, feeling it, feeling its shape arising in it, the fragrance that subtly surrounds it; and you were lost, you were ecstatic. You were in tune. By being in tune with the tree, you became in tune with the universe.
Sometime sitting by the side of the river and watching it... and everything becomes quiet and calm.
Not that you do something to become quiet and calm. Not that you do something to become quiet and calm. Nobody can do anything. And if you do, it is absurd. You can sit still like a Buddha statue; that is not going to help.
A disciple came to Bokuju, and to impress him, he sat like Buddha. Bokuju came and the disciple was absolutely still, with closed eyes. Bokuju laughed loudly and hit him hard on the head, and he said, "Get up, you fool! We already have too many Buddhas in this temple! Get out from here! Can't you see?" Bokuju used to live in a temple which had one thousand Buddha statues; he said, "Can't you see? One thousand Buddhas are here, and you also want to become a Buddha?"
The disciple was very much worried. He wanted to impress the Master; that "I am a great meditator."
And Bokuju said, "Drop all this rubbish. Be alive. Don't pretend, and don't enforce." Yes, one day one sits like Buddha, but that is nothing of your doing. It comes, it happens; it is not a doing at all.
Listening to the sound of water or looking at the floating clouds in the sky, suddenly it is there. It envelops you. You have fallen in tune with existence.
These rare moments by and by make you aware of why you are miserable. You are miserable because you are not with the existence. Somehow you are struggling against it. You are miserable because you are not surrendered to the whole. The part is trying to conquer the whole. See the foolishness of it.
Even a man like Bertrand Russell has written a book, "Conquest of Nature." "Conquest"? You are trying to conquer nature? Who are you? It is as if one of my fingers tries to conquer me. We are part of nature. We ARE nature, expressions of the same nature, of the same vastness. How can we conquer it? How can the part conquer the whole? The part will only be unhappy if it tries to conquer the whole, because defeat is certain - absolutely certain. Frustration is certain - absolutely certain. The part will be miserable. You are miserable, in anguish, in anxiety, in tension, getting almost neurotic because you are trying to conquer nature.
The East has a totally different message. Religion is the Eastern message. All the great religions were born in the East. The West has not given birth to a single religion; it has given birth to great science, great scientific endeavor, but not to religion. Science is a human, idiotic effort to conquer nature. Religion is to fall in tune with nature. Call it religion, call it TAO, call it DHARMA; it means the same: to fall in tune with nature.
But it will be difficult if you have certain ideas implanted in you for or against. A Christian cannot be a religious man, neither can a Hindu be, nor a communist. A theist cannot be religious, an atheist cannot be religious; they are already full of ideas. They have already decided, without experiencing anything.
Here I am not trying to convince you about any ideology. I am trying to help you to drop all ideology so you become empty, pure, virgin, your eyes become unclouded and you attain to a clarity. In that clarity you will understand what religion is. Not through books, not through Bibles and the Koran and the Vedas, no, but through clarity. When the part looks at the whole and understands "I am part of this whole" and feels happy - "This vastness is my vastness; I am not separate from it; I am one with it" - and starts dancing in that oneness, religion is born. Religion is not an ideology; it is an experience.
"But, anyhow, I suppose it is the way of total aloneness." Please, don't start supposing. Religion is not a supposition. It is not "if," "but," no. Either you know it or you don't know it. Please, don't suppose. How can you suppose? "But, anyhow I suppose.... " Why? How can you suppose? If you don't know, you don't know. Supposition gives you a notion of false knowledge - AS IF you know.
Stop supposing. Just know that you don't know, and remain in that pure ignorance. If you can stay in your ignorance - which needs great courage.... Knowledge is cheap. To remain in ignorance is a very courageous act. There are very rare people who can remain ignorant, without supposing anything, because the mind hankers to cling to something, suppose something. It supposes "There is God" - okay. If it supposes "There is not God," then it insists that there is no God - then you cling to the "no God." Even a negative concept will do, but no concept? Then you feel empty, so you fill up, you stuff yourself with suppositions.
No, then you will never know what truth is. Truth is not a supposition. When you don't suppose anything, truth arises.
Whatsoever you suppose will be your supposition. It will reflect your mind - and you don't know.
Can't you see the simple fact of it that your supposition will become a China wall? How can you suppose? Just see the fact that "I don't know."
Be an agnostic, and that is the sure step towards religion. Agnosticism is the base of all religion. A religious person is always agnostic. He says, "I don't know, this way or that, and I am not so stupid as to suppose anything. I will remain in my ignorance and I will look around. If I come across an experience, I should like to remain open, vulnerable, so nothing is distorted."
"But, anyhow, I suppose it is the way of total aloneness." Whatsoever you suppose will be wrong.
Even the word "aloneness" will be wrong because in fact you mean LONELINESS. You don't mean aloneness, you cannot. Aloneness is a totally different thing from loneliness. Loneliness is when you miss the other; aloneness is when you enjoy yourself. These are totally different things.
Loneliness is a misery; aloneness is ecstatic. When you are so happy with yourself, when you are in love with yourself, when your own aloneness fills you tremendously like a presence, then... then it is aloneness. When you are empty, blank, dark, and you are missing the other and you want somehow to stuff yourself with something.... When people are left alone, they will go to the fridge and start eating something, or they will put on the tv or the radio, or they will start reading the same newspaper that they have read three times since the morning - again they will start looking at it. Or they will start thinking where to go - to go to see a movie, a concert, or just go shopping; but DO something.
Loneliness is intolerable - it is a suffering, it is a hell. Aloneness is a beauty. It is such a pristine moment of tremendous happiness that nothing is comparable to it. In this whole life, there is nothing comparable to the beauty and blessedness of aloneness.
When you are alone you are a god. When you are lonely you are just nothing, just empty, hollow, a black hole.
That's why you say, "But, anyhow, I suppose it is the way of total aloneness." You don't know what aloneness is, and you don't know what totality is. Because if you know totality, you have known God.
Totality is what God is all about. The sum total of existence is what God is. We can drop the word "God." Call it "totality," that will do - and will do even better than the word "God" because "God" has been used so much by wrong people. Politicians, priests, they all talk about "God."
"God" has passed through so many wrong lips, it is almost a dirty word. "Totality" is better - the total. But you don't know what "total" is. You know only yourself - the ego. The ego is against the total, afraid of the total. Surrender brings you to totality, to an experience.
And remember - "And this makes me a little uneasy"that's why I say you cannot suppose aloneness, because aloneness never makes anybody uneasy. It makes one so ecstatically happy that you cannot imagine, you have not even dreamed about it. A Buddha is alone, a Mahavir is alone, a Kabir is alone - and they are alone even when they are in the crowd. You cannot destroy their aloneness.
Their aloneness is a crystallized phenomenon.
Try to understand this. You are born alone; you die alone. These two are the greatest moments in life: birth and death. You are born alone; you die alone. The greatest moments of life - the beginning and the end - are in aloneness. When you meditate you again become alone. That's why meditation is both - a death and a birth. You die to the past and you are born to the new, to the unknown.
Even in love, when you think you are together, you are not together. There are two alonenesses. In real love nothing is lost. When two lovers are sitting - if they are really lovers and they don't try to possess each other and they don't try to dominate each other, because that is not love; that is the way of hatred, the way of violence - if they love and if the love is coming out of their aloneness, you will see two beautiful alonenesses together. They are like two Himalayan peaks, high in the sky, but separate. They don't interfere. In fact deep love only reveals your pure aloneness to you.
All that is true and all that is real will always bring you to aloneness. But you are afraid and you say it makes you a little uneasy.
There are a few things which can only be done alone. Love, prayer, life, death, aesthetic experiences, blissful moments - they all come when you are alone. When you are in love you think you are with somebody. Maybe the somebody is just reflecting your aloneness, the somebody is just a mirror in which your aloneness is reflected But the deeper you move in love, the deeper you know that even your lover cannot penetrate there. Your aloneness is absolute - and it is good that it is so; otherwise you will be a public thing. Then you will not have any innermost core where you can be alone. Then you can be violated. But your aloneness is absolute; nobody can violate it.
You can kill me, but you cannot destroy my aloneness. That is my freedom. You can put me in a bondage, but you cannot put my aloneness in a bondage. Even in your jail I will be alone.
Aloneness.is my intrinsic nature. It cannot be destroyed; nobody can take it away.
Let me tell you one anecdote so that it doesn't become too serious.
Sue met her friend Alice on the street one afternoon and noticed that Alice was well along the road of pregnancy.
"You know," Sue said, "I would have given anything to have a baby, but I guess it is hopeless."
"I know just how you feel," Alice said. "My husband was that way too. But everything is fine now; in fact I am eight months pregnant."
"What did you do?"
"I went to a faith healer."
"Oh, we tried that," Sue said. "My husband and I went there for six months."
"Don't be silly," Alice told her. "Go alone."
There are a few things for which one should go alone. Meditation is one of those things, God is one of those things, death is one of those things; one should go alone.
But the questioner is uneasy because it is only a supposition. A supposition is a supposition; it doesn't help to understand. It hinders.
"Since you gave me sannyas, I feel like I am in an abyss." Exactly right. That's what sannyas is.
Sannyas is nothing but throwing you into your inner abyss, taking away everything that you cling to, taking away all that you possess, taking away your very possessiveness. Sannyas is a VIA NEGATIVA. I go on taking things away from you - your thinking, your ideology, your religion, your church, your Bible, your Koran. I go on taking away. By and by I will leave you alone; everything is taken away from you. Now you will feel as if you are in an abyss, but this abyss is just a transitory period.
You feel like you are in an abyss because now you cannot cling to anything. Relax, rest in this abyss... and suddenly the whole gestalt changes. Then you know that this abyss is your nature and there is no need to cling to anything. This is how you are. This inner silence is your nature. This inner thoughtlessness is your nature. This aloneness is nothing to be afraid of; this aloneness has to be tasted, chewed well, digested. And you will see, out of this aloneness bliss arises, bliss flowers.
But there will be a transitory period when you will not be able to cling and you will not be able to know what is going to happen and you will be just in between. Christian mystics have named those days rightly; they call them "the dark night of the soul." The old light has disappeared and the new has not arisen yet. It is almost like you come from the outside - it is hot, burning sun and your eyes are dazzled - you come into your room and you cannot see anything; it seems almost dark. You sit and you rest for a while; and by and by it is no longer dark. Your eyes become settled. Your focus changes and you can see now; you are no longer dazzled by the hot sun.
For lives together you have been outside in the hot sun. You have lived a miserable life - again and again the same miserable life. You have become attuned to it. When you come to your inner being, you see only darkness, abyss, emptiness. You don't see anything. You become afraid.
Rest a little while, let your eyes be settled, and you will be able to see a light arising - a light with no heat, a flame without heat, a light which is cool. When you have started feeling it, then you know that sannyas throws you into an abyss just to bring you to an enlightened state of being. That abyss is the price we pay.
IN YOUR LECTURES YOU TALK ABOUT GURDJIEFF, RAMAN, RAMAKRISHNA, BASHO, AND OTHERS WHO ARE PHYSICALLY NOT ALIVE, BUT WHY DON'T YOU TALK ABOUT THE ENLIGHTENED PERSONS WHO ARE PHYSICALLY ALIVE TODAY?
The question is from Swami Yoga Chinmaya. He has the knack of asking foolish questions.
Now, if there is some enlightened person alive, he can talk for himself. Why should I talk for him?
So I talk about the dead people because they cannot talk themselves. This is so simple.
THERE WAS A LITTLE POLAR BEAR WHO ASKED HIS MOTHER, " WAS MY DADDY ALSO A POLAR BEAR?" "OF COURSE YOUR DADDY WAS A POLAR BEAR."
"BUT," GOES ON THE LITTLE ONE AFTER A WHILE, "MOMMY, JUST TELL ME, WAS MY GRANDFATHER ALSO A POLAR BEAR?"
" YES, HE WAS ALSO A POLAR BEAR."
TIME GOES BY AND THE LITTLE ONE KEEPS ASKING HIS MOTHER, "BUT WHAT ABOUT MY GREAT-GRANDFATHER? WAS HE A POLAR BEAR AS WELL?"
" YES, HE WAS. BUT WHY ARE YOU ASKING?"
"BECAUSE I AM FREEZING."
I WAS TOLD MY FATHER WAS A POLAR BEAR, I WAS TOLD MY GRANDFATHER WAS A POLAR BEAR, I WAS TOLD MY GREAT-GRANDFATHER WAS A POLAR BEAR; BUT I AM FREEZING.
HOW CAN I CHANGE THIS, OSHO?
I happen to know your father, and I happen to know your grandfather, and I happen to know your great-grandfather too; and they were also freezing. And their mothers were telling the same story to them! - that your father was a polar bear and your grandfather was a polar bear and your great- grandfather was a polar bear.
If you are freezing, you are freezing. These stories won't help. This simply proves that even polar bears freeze. Look at the reality and don't move into traditions and don't go into the past. If you are freezing, you are freezing. And this is not a consolation at all - that you are a polar bear.
These consolations have been given to humanity. When you are dying, you are dying; somebody comes and says, "Don't be afraid; the soul is immortal." Now, you are dying.
I have heard about a Jew who fell on a road and was dying; it was a heart attack. A crowd gathered, and they looked for some religious people, some religious person, some priest, because the man was dying. A Catholic priest came out, not knowing who the person was. He went close to the dying man and said, "Do you believe? Do you declare that you believe in the Trinity - God the Father and the Holy Ghost and the Son Jesus Christ?"
The dying Jew opened his eyes and he said, "I am dying, and he is talking in riddles. Now what am I to do with this trinity? I am dying. What nonsense are you talking about?"
A man is dying and you console him that the soul is immortal. These consolations are of no help.
Somebody is in misery and you tell him, "Don't be miserable. It is just psychological." How does it help? You make him even more miserable These theories are not of much help. They have been invented to console, to dieceive.
If you are freezing, you are freezing. Rather than asking whether your father was a polar bear, do some exercise. Jump, jog, or do Dynamic Meditation; and you won't freeze, I promise you. Forget all about your father and grandfather and great-grandfather. Just listen to your reality. If you are freezing, then do something. And something can always be done. But this is no way; you are on a wrong track. You can go on asking and asking, and of course the poor mother goes on consoling you.
The question is beautiful, very meaningful, has tremendous import. This is how humanity is suffering. Listen to suffering. Look into the problem and don't try to find any solutions outside the problem. Look directly into the problem and you will always find the solution there. Look into the question; don't ask for the answer.
For example, you can go on asking, "Who am I?" You can go to the Christian and he will say, "You are a son of God, and God loves you very much." And you will be puzzled, because how can God love you?
A priest told Mulla Nasrudin, "God loves you very much."
He said, "How can he love me? He does not even know me."
And the priest said, "That's why he can love you. We know you. We cannot love you - it is too difficult."
Or you go to the Hindus and ask, and they say, "You are God himself." Not the son of God; you are God himself. But still you have your headache and your migraine and you are very much puzzled at how the God can have a migraine... and it doesn't solve the problem.
If you want to ask, "Who am I?" don't go to anybody. Sit silently and ask deeper into your own being.
Let the question resound. Not verbally. Existentially, let the question be there like an arrow piercing your heart: "Who am I?" And go with the question.
And don't be in a hurry to answer it, because if you answer it, that answer must have come from somebody else - some priest, some politician, some tradition. Don't answer from your memory, because your memory is all borrowed. Your memory is just like a computer, very dead. Your memory has nothing to do with knowing. It has been fed into you. So when you ask, "Who am I?" and your memory says, "You are a great soul," watch out. Don't fall into the trap. You just discard all this rubbish; it is all rot. Just go on asking, "Who am I?... Who am I?... Who am I?..." and one day you will see, the question too has disappeared. There is only a thirst left - "Who am I?" Not the question, really, but a thirst - your whole being throbbing with the thirst - "Who am I?"
And one day you will see, not even you are there: there is only thirst. And in that intense, passionate state of your being, suddenly you will realize something has exploded. Suddenly you have come face to face with yourself and you know who you are.
There is no way to ask your father, "Who am I?" He does not know himself who he is. There is no way to ask your grandfather or great-grandfather. Don't ask! Don't ask the mother, don't ask the society, don't ask the culture, don't ask the civilization. Ask your own innermost core. If you really want to come to know the answer, go inwards; and from that inward experience, change happens.
You ask, "How can I change this?" You cannot change it. First you have to face your reality, and that very encounter will change you.
A reporter was trying to get a human-interest story out of an old, old man at a state-supported home for the aged.
"Pop," asked the brash reporter, "how would you feel if you suddenly got a letter telling you that a forgotten relative had left you five million dollars?"
"Son," came the answer slowly, "I would still be ninety-four years old."
Do you get it? The old man is saying, "I am ninety-four years old. Even if I get five million dollars, what am I supposed to do with it? I will still be ninety-four years old."
What Buddha says, what Mahavir says, what Christ says, iS of no help to you. You are freezing - you are still ninety-four years old. Even if the whole knowledge of the world is poured into your head, it is not going to help: you are still freezing - you are still ninety-four years old. Unless some experience arises in you, some vital experience that transforms your being and you become young again, alive again, nothing is of any value.
So don't ask others. That is the first lesson to be learned. Ask yourself. And then too remember - because others have put answers there already, so those answers will be coming - avoid those answers. The question is yours, so nobody else's answer can be of any help. The question is yours; the answer has to be yours too.
Buddha has drunk and he is satisfied. Jesus has drunk and he is ecstatic. I have drunk, but how is that going to help YOUR thirst? You will have to drink yourself.
It happened, a great Sufi mystic was asked by an emperor to come to his court and pray for them.
The mystic came, but he refused to pray. He said, "It is impossible. How can I pray for you?" Said the mystic, "There are a few things one has to do oneself. For example, if you want to make love to a woman, you have to make it yourself. I cannot do it for you on your behalf. Or if you have to blow your nose, you have to blow it yourself. I cannot blow my nose on your behalf; that won't be of any help. And so is prayer. How can I pray for you? You pray. I can pray for myself." And he closed his eyes and moved into great prayer.
That's what I can do. For me the problem has disappeared, but it has not disappeared by anybody else's answer. I have not asked anybody. In fact the whole effort has been to drop all the answers that others have given - very generously.
People go on giving you advice. They are very generous in their advice. They may not be generous in anything else, but in advice they are very generous, great people. Whether you ask or not they go on giving advice. Advice is the only thing that is given so much and that is never taken. Nobody takes it.
I have heard about two bums sitting under a tree, and one was saying, "I landed into this state because I never listened to anybody's advice."
And the other said, "Brother,I landed here because I followed everybody's advice."
The journey has to be your own.
You are freezing, I know. You are miserable, I know. Life is hard, I know. And I have no consolation for you. And I don't believe in consoling you, because all consolation becomes a postponement. The mother says to the child bear, "Yes, your father was a polar bear," and for a little while he tries not to freeze because polar bears are not supposed to freeze. But it doesn't help. Again he asks, "Mother, was my grandfather also a polar bear?" He is trying to know, "Was there something in my heritage that had gone wrong; that's why I am freezing?" And the mother says, "Yes, your grandfather was also a polar bear." Again he tries to postpone freezing, but you cannot postpone it. You can delay a little; again it is there.
Reality cannot be avoided. Theorizations are of no help at all. Forget theories and listen to the fact.
You are miserable? Then misery has to be looked into. You are angry? That anger has to be looked into. You feel sexual? Then forget what others say about it; just look into it yourself. It is your life, and you have to live it. Don't borrow. Never be secondhand. God loves people who are firsthand.
He has never been known to love carbon copies. You just be firsthand, be original, be unique, be individual, be yourself, and look into your problems.
And there is only one thing I can say to you: that in your problem, there is hidden the solution. The problem is just a seed. If you go into it deeply, the solution will sprout out of it. Your ignorance is the seed. If you go deeply into it, knowledge will flower out of it. Your shivering, your freezing, is the problem. Go into it, and warmth will arise out of it.
In fact all is given to you - question and answer both, the problem and the solution both, ignorance and knowledge both. You just have to look inwards.
I HAVE HEARD, A MAN IN AN ORANGE ROBE ENTERED THE VRINDAVAN JUICE BAR, BARGED UP TO THE FRONT OF THE LINE, AND DEMANDED TEA AND CAKE. HE PAID WITH A HUNDRED-RUPEE NOTE AND COMPLAINED ABOUT THE COST AND THE LONG LINEUP.
AFTER CHOOSING THE BIGGEST PIECE OF CAKE AND THE BIGGEST CUP, HE TOOK OVER AN OLD LADY'S SEAT AND PROCEEDED TO GOBBLE THE FOOD. A BYSTANDER, PUZZLED BY HIS BEHAVIOR, ASKED THE MEANING OF IT.
"WHY," HE EXPLAINED, "OSHO SAID THAT ONLY A CRYSTALLIZED EGO CAN BE DROPPED."
There is more possibility to misunderstand me than to understand me. And in misunderstanding, you will find much solace, much consolation.
Just the other day, Mulla Nasrudin came to me, and he said, "Enough is enough - I cannot trust you anymore."
I said, "What happened, Nasrudin? You have been such a long-obedient disciple to me."
He said, "Now it is too much. Just the other day I was at the racetrack. Somebody's change had fallen, so I was picking it up, and there comes a blind, or mad or drunk guy, and he saddles me as if I am a horse."
So I said, "Why didn't you stand up?"
He said, "But you have said accept everything, so I said Osho says accept totally. So I accept it and I try to see now what happens - and the madman jumps on me."
I was also intrigued; I said, "Then what did you do?"
He said, "What can I do? I have to run - and I come third in the race! Now this is too much! I cannot trust you anymore!"
There is every possibility to misunderstand me and there is every possibility to find rationalizations.
This is how the mind goes on being foolish, the mind goes on playing around, fooling around. It always finds ways to protect itself. If I say drop the ego, you say okay, and you try to drop it; and then the ego becomes your humbleness and you start moving around with your nose up, looking at everybody as if everybody is condemned to hell. And you have that look of "holier than thou" and "I am the most humble man around here." If I say the ego has to become big, only then it bursts, then you say, "Okay. That's what we have been always trying. Now you are also supporting it - so far so good."
When are you going to understand me? When you listen to me, always remember, your mind is there to corrupt it. Unless you are very, very watchful, your mind will pollute it. And mind is so cunning, it can always find a way out. And it is so clever, it can always make rationalizations look like reasons.
DEAR OSHO, THERE ARE MORE AND MORE NON-MOMENTS, PERIODS OF NO TIME, ESPECIALLY WHEN TALKING WITH OTHERS, WHEN SUDDENLY I AM NOT TALKING ANYMORE, TALKING IS JUST HAPPENING: THERE IS A FLOW, A SENSE OF POWER AND WHOLENESS, HANDS MOVE IN PERFECT SYNCHRONIZATION WITH THOUGHT FEELINGS, SPACE EXPANDS, AND THERE IS OPENNESS WITH NO SENSE OF SEPARATION - AND NO "I" THAT IS SEPARATE.
THE FRONT OF THE BODY SEEMS TO BE NONEXISTENT AND I AM TALKING WITH MYSELF.
ARE THESE THE HERE-AND-NOW-I MOMENTS YOU ARE TALKING ABOUT, OR IS THERE MORE, OR IS IT A MATTER OF MORE MORE,FREQUENTLY?
The question is from Amit Prem.
These are the moments I am talking about, but Amit Prem is not yet certain about them; hence the question. There is still a little doubt, and because of that doubt, those moments are not penetrating deep enough to reach to his very core of being. He is still suspicious, still thinking whether they are or not. That too is natural. The whole conditioning of the mind will stand like a barrier. Even at the last moment it will try to create suspicion, to make you ambiguous, to make you unclear, confused.
The mind follows you to the very last moment, and it goes on dragging you backwards. It is its old habit; it is what the mind has been trained for. I am not condemning it; I am just stating a fact.
An inveterate pickpocket finally breathed his last and prostrated himself before St. Peter, craving admission through the Pearly Gates.
St. Peter heard him through courteously, but then decreed, "It is hell for you, my boy. And meanwhile, kindly give me back my watch."
Now, a pickpocket is a pickpocket. Even at the gates of heaven, while Peter is talking, why not snatch away his watch?
Mind is a habit because mind is a mechanism. So when these moments of here-now start penetrating your being, the mind stands on guard and it says, "Watch, you may be in a delusion. Or you may be hallucinating. Or maybe this guy Osho has hypnotized you" - or something. Suspicion.
Now Amit Prem has to drop this doubting. Nothing else is needed.
He asks, "Are these the here-and-now moments?" Yes, they are.
And that's what a Master exists for: to help you in those moments when you become suspicious.
when you lose clarity, to give you support.
I say to you, yes, these are the moments; but if you become entangled with your suspicion, you will lose them. They are just happening; it is just the beginning. If suspicion comes in that will be the end of the beginning; then they will die. They are very fragile right now. You should water them with trust. Not with doubt - doubt will prove to be a poison.
So don't listen to the mind. That is what sannyas is all about. Why do I insist so much for sannyas?
So that when these moments start happening, you can trust me. You have always trusted your mind.
It is not worth it, but you have trusted it. The Master is a device, so there is an alternative: when there is any problem with the mind, you can choose the Master or the mind. These are the moments when the Master has to be listened to.
Yes, I repeat it again: these are the right moments. But if you get suspicious, if you think about them, you will miss them.
You are saying: "Are these the here-and-now moments... or is there more!" That again is the mind.
The whole trick of the mind is the technique of more." The mind always says, "There must be more."If you have money, the mind says, "Have more money." If you have power, the mind says, "Have more power." If you are getting moments of meditation, the mind says, "There must be more." "More" is the technique of the mind to confuse you, to never allow you a moment of happiness. The "more" brings misery: "So there is more? So I am not getting enough." And misery enters. You have compared.
Forget all about the "more." "More" is the trick of the mind; "more" is the agent of the mind.
These are the moments. Don't think about the future; don't think about the past. If you think about the past, the mind will create doubt. If you think about the future, the mind will create ambition.
These are the two tricks of the mind. Look at the past, it creates doubt. It says, "There have been other moments like this also, but where are they now? Once you had fallen in love with a woman, and how beautiful it was - and then? Then all disappeared. Maybe these moments are also like that. You have fallen in love with this man and something is happening. It is the honeymoon, Amit Prem. The honeymoon cannot be permanent; the honeymoon will disappear."
Amit Prem is a new sannyasin; not yet settled in sannyas, yet escaping and cannot escape, yet trying hard to figure out what is what and not able to figure it out. It is very difficult.
You cannot figure out what I am doing here. My ways are so contradictory, it is impossible to figure it out. My ways are paradoxical. So I say one thing one moment and I contradict it immediately.
He's still not settled. He has taken sannyas, but hypothetically: "Let us see what happens. Maybe there is something; maybe there is not. If there is not, then who can prevent you? You can move back." That's why this suspicion and unclarity and confusion.
If you settle with me, then the past is dropped. It is difficult and hard to drop the past, but unless you drop the past, the mind will never allow you freedom. The mind is your past; the whole accumulated past is your mind. Drop the past, and these moments will penetrate to the very core. And you will not think about "more," because you think about more only when these moments have not penetrated to the core. When they have penetrated to the core, there is nothing more. And when there is nothing more, there is bliss and benediction.
WHAT IS ENLIGHTENMENT? PLEASE EXPLAIN.
I will not, because I cannot. And I cannot because nobody can. You have come a little late. Had you asked me the same question before I became enlightened, I had many answers. Now I have none.
Now I am absolutely dumb about it.
I can show you the path, how to become enlightened, but I cannot say what it is. I can hold your hand to the very door and push you in, but I don't know what is in.
If you are courageous, come, follow me. If you are not courageous, escape as soon as possible, because if you hang around a little longer, it is dangerous. And I am telling you beforehand, so you can never make me responsible for it. Either escape as fast as possible and as far away as possible to be here is dangerous - or take courage and hold my hand: I can take you in that state of enlightenment.
But nothing can be said about it. It is indefinable, it is ineffable. It IS - in fact only it is, nothing else exists - but it is so vast, it cannot be confined to any explanation.