I will have to go in circles, circles within circles within circles, for that's how life is. And more so in my case. In nearly fifty years, I must have lived at least fifty lives. In fact, I have not done anything else other than living. Other people have many occupations, but from my very childhood I have remained a vagabond, not doing anything, just living. When you don't do anything except live, then of course life takes on a totally different dimension. It is no longer horizontal, it has depth.
Devageet, it is good that you were never my student, otherwise you would never have been a dentist.
I would have been the last person to allow you any certificate. But here you can laugh and giggle thinking I am so relaxed, there is no problem. But remember, even if I am dead, I can come out of my grave to shout at you. That has been my whole business, my whole life.
I have not done anything in the sense of earning, of having a great bank balance, of becoming a powerful person politically. I have lived in my own way, and in that living, teaching has been an essential part. So, even here, forgive me, I cannot forget it: I am always the Master. You know, I know, everybody else in this room knows, that you are under me, and I am in the dental chair - you are not. If I giggle, that can be forgiven: "Aha! The old man is enjoying himself!" Even Ashu is enjoying the idea, otherwise she is a serious woman, very serious. Women, once they are teachers, typists, nurses, something goes wrong in their scheme. They suddenly become so serious.
Yet it was Eve who was not serious, Adam was. The serpent could never have persuaded him. In fact, he tried many times; that's what the Egyptian story tells, and that is far more authentic than the biblical version. It is more ancient too. It says that the serpent tried with Adam, but could not get him hooked. Then finally, as a last resort, he tried Eve. It is better to call her Eva, just as the Egyptians do, it sounds more feminine - Eva. The serpent succeeded at the very first attempt. Since then, all salesmen and advertisers have been aiming at Eva. They don't take any notice of the poor man
who has to pay for everything Eva purchases. That is his problem, so why should they bother about it?
Eve, or Eva as I would like to call her - I always like the beautiful, wherever it is. Eve does not sound very musical, and seems to be cut short, pruned, looks more like an English garden, not like a Zen garden. "Eva" has unlimited potential, just the sound of it, so let's call her Eva. Why did the devil succeed with her at his first attempt? For the simple reason that she was not business-minded.
She was not serious, must have laughed at the devil's jokes, must have talked joyously; gossiped I mean, and when you gossip with the devil, he is going to get the upper hand. If you laugh at his jokes, then he knows he has a way, he can approach your very being. That is how he persuaded poor Eva.
Since then, I think women have lost their very quality of being joyous. Even if they laugh, it is a muffled laugh. Even when they laugh they put their hands up to their face, as if somebody may see the great work their dentist has done on them. But here, in this room, there is no need to be serious.
And it is good that today, for the first time, Ashu is laughing so clearly that I can hear. And why is she laughing? She is laughing because poor Devageet is being beaten. Naturally she laughs, and says to me - I can hear what she is thinking - "Give him a good slap, one more!" No, this is enough, otherwise I will go astray.
That's what I was saying: that life is a circle within a circle, within a circle - and more so in my life. I have not lived in the way one is expected to live. I have not done anything else. Yes, I have just lived and done nothing else, but then it is too much: a single moment is almost an eternity! Just think of it....
So I will have to go on in the same way that I have lived. You will have to cope with me, there is no other way. I never coped with anybody, so I don't know how to, and even if I tried to learn now, it is too late. But you have been coping with every kind of person throughout your life.
I did not cope with my father, my mother, my uncles, who all were loving and helpful to me; nor my teachers, who were not my enemies; nor my professors, who always wanted, in spite of me, to help.
But I could not cope with anybody, they all had to cope with me. Now it is too late. Things cannot be changed now. It was, and still is, a one-way affair.
You can cope with me, I am available. But I cannot cope with you, for two reasons: one, you are not available, not present. Even if I knock at your door, there's nobody inside - and the neighbors inform me that the fellow has never been seen; the door is locked. Who locked it? - nobody knows.
Where is the key? - perhaps lost. And even if I could find the key or break the lock - which is far easier - what would be the point? The fellow is not inside the house. I would not find you there; you are always somewhere else. Now, how to find you and cope with you? It is impossible.
Secondly, even if it were possible, just for argument's sake, I cannot do it. I have never done it. I don't know its mechanism. I am still simply a wild boy from the village.
Just the other night my secretary was crying and saying to me, "Why do you trust me, Osho? I am not worthy. I am not even worthy to show you my face."
I said, "Who is bothered about worthiness and unworthiness? And who is to decide? I, at least, am not going to decide. Why are you crying?"
She said, "Just the idea that you have chosen me to do your work. It is such a big task."
I said, "Forget all about the bigness of it, and just listen to what I say."
I have never done anything myself, so naturally I never bother about whether she will be able to do it or not. I simply say to her "Listen," and of course, when I say something she has to listen. Now, how she manages to do it is not my problem, nor is it her problem: she manages because I have said so. I have said it because I don't know anything about management. Do you see how perfectly I have chosen her? She fits. I am a misfit.
My grandmother was always worried. Again and again she would say "Raja, you will be a misfit. I tell you, you will always be a misfit."
I used to laugh and tell her, "The very word 'misfit' is so beautiful that I have fallen in love with it.
Now if I fit, remember, I will hit your head - and when I say that, you know I mean it. I will really hit your head, if you are alive. If you are not alive then I will come to your grave, but I will certainly do something nasty. You can trust me."
She laughed even more, and said, "I take the challenge. I again say you will remain a misfit for ever, whether I am alive or dead. And you will never be able to hit my head because you will never be able to fit."
And she was certainly right. I was the misfit, everywhere. At the university where I was teaching I never joined in the annual staff photograph. The vice-chancellor once asked me, "I have noticed that you are the only staff member who never comes for our annual photograph. Everybody else comes because the photo is published, and who doesn't want his photo to be published?"
I said, "I certainly don't want to have my photograph published - not along with so many donkeys.
And that photograph would remain forever a blemish on my name, knowing that once I was associated with this company."
He was shocked, and said, "You call all these people donkeys? Including me?"
I said, "Of course including you. That's what I think," I told him, "and if you want to hear something nice, you have called the wrong man. Call one of the donkeys."
Not a single photograph exists in which I even participated while I was in service. I was such a misfit, I thought it was better not to be associated with those people with whom I had nothing in common.
At university, I associated only with a tree, a gulmarg tree.
I don't know whether this kind of tree exists in the West or not, but it is one of the most beautiful trees in the East. Its shade is really cool. It does not grow high; it spreads its branches all around.
Sometimes the branches of a single old gulmarg tree can cover enough land that five hundred people can easily sit beneath it. And when it flowers in the summer, thousands of flowers blossom
simultaneously. It is not a miserly tree, producing one flower then another. No, suddenly, one night, all the buds open, and in the morning you cannot believe your eyes - thousands of blossoms! And they are the color of sannyasins. I had only that tree as my friend.
I used to park my car beneath it for so many years that slowly everybody became aware not to park there: it was my place. I did not have to tell them, but by and by, slowly, it became accepted. Nobody would disturb that tree. If I was not coming, that tree waited for me. For years I parked under that tree. When I left university, I said good-bye to the vice-chancellor, and then I said, "I must go now, it is getting dark and my tree may go to sleep before the sun sets. I have to say goodbye to the gulmarg." The vice-chancellor looked at me as if I was mad, but anybody would have looked just the same. That's the way to look at a misfit. But he still could not believe that I would do it. So he watched from his window while I said goodbye to the gulmarg.
I hugged the tree, and we remained together for a moment. The vice-chancellor rushed out, and came running to me saying, "Forgive me, just forgive me. I have never seen anybody hugging a tree, but now I know how much everybody is missing. I have never seen anybody say goodbye or good morning to a tree, but you have not only taught me a lesson, it has really sunk in."
After two months he phoned me, just to inform me saying, "It is sad, and very strange, but the day you left, something happened to your tree" - it had now become my tree.
I said, "What has happened?"
He said, "It started dying. If you come now you will just see a dead tree, with no flowers or leaves.
What has happened? That's why I phoned you."
I said, "You should have phoned the tree. How can I answer for the tree?"
For a moment there was silence, then he said, "It is as I always thought: you are mad!"
I said, "You are still not convinced, otherwise who phones a madman? You should have called the tree. And the tree is just outside your window - no phone is needed."
He simply hung up. I laughed, but the next day in the early morning, before any of the idiots at the university were there, I went to see the tree. Yes, all its flowers were gone, and yet it was in season.
All had gone - not only the flowers but the leaves too. There were just naked branches standing against the sky. I again hugged the tree and knew it was dead. At the first hug there was a response; at the second hug there was nobody to respond. The tree had left; only its body was standing there, and may stand for years. Perhaps it is still standing, but it is just dead wood.
I could never manage to fit anywhere. As a student I was a nuisance. Every professor who taught me looked on me as a punishment that God had sent for him. I enjoyed being a messenger of God.
I enjoyed it to the fullest. Who would not have enjoyed it? And if they thought I was a punishment, I proved to be exactly - or more than - what they expected.
Only a few have met me lately. Their first question was, "We cannot yet believe that you could have become enlightened. You were such a trouble-maker. We have forgotten all the students that studied with you, but even now we see you once in a while, in our nightmares."
I can understand it. I could not fit in with anything. Whatsoever they taught me was so mediocre that I had to fight against it. I had to tell them, "This is very mediocre...." Now, you can imagine saying this to a professor who had been hoping that you would appreciate his lecture-which he has been preparing for days - and at the end of it a student stands up.... And I was a strange student, to say the least.
The first thing to be remembered is that I had long hair; and that long hair had an even longer history.
I will come to it some day in some circle. That is the beauty of going in circles. You can come to the same point again and again, on a different level - like going round and round towards the peak of a mountain: you come to the same view many times, on different levels. Each time is a little different because you are not standing in the same spot, but still the view is the same, perhaps more beautiful, perhaps far more beautiful, because you can see more....
I will come to this point sometime, but not today....
What is the time?
"One minute past eight, Osho."
Good. Just moisten my lips.
Today particularly I wanted to say that attention is a double-edged sword - double-edged because it cuts both the listener and the speaker. It also joins them together. It is a very significant process.
Gurdjieff had the right word for it, "crystallization."
If a man is really attentive, it does not matter what to - to XYZ, to anything - in that very process of being attentive he will become integrated, crystallized. By focusing himself on one thing he will become focused within his being.
But that is only half the story; the person who is listening attentively certainly attains crystallization.
It is a well-known fact in all the eastern schools of meditation. Just being attentive to anything, even nonsense, will do; just a bottle of Coca-Cola will help immensely, particularly the Americans. Just looking at the bottle of Coca-Cola attentively, and you have the secret of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi's transcendental meditation. But it is only half the truth, and a half truth can be more dangerous than a complete lie.
The other half is possible only if you are not just reading a book, or chanting a mantra, or looking at a statue; the other half is possible only if you are in deep synchronicity with a living person. I am not calling it love, because that can misguide you; not even friendship, because you will think you know it already. I will call it "synchronicity," just so you have to think about it and give it a little of your being.
When you feel really attentive, synchronicity happens. It may be just a sunset you are watching, or just a flower, or children playing on a lawn and you are enjoying their joyousness... but a certain harmony is needed. If it happens, there is attention. If it happens between a Master and a disciple, then certainly you have the most precious diamond possible in your hands.
I have told you that I have been fortunate, although I don't know why. There are things which one can only state; they are, and there is no reason why they are. The stars are; the roses are; the universe is - or perhaps far better - the universes are. It is better to call existence a multiverse rather than a universe. The idea of multiple dimensions has to be introduced.
Man has been dominated by the idea of "one" for too long. And I am a pagan. I don't believe in God, I believe in gods. To me a tree is a god, a mountain is a god, a man is a god, but not always; he has the potential. A woman is a god, but not always; more often she is a bitch, but that is her choice.
She need not have chosen it; nobody has forced her.
Ordinarily, man is just a husband, which is an ugly word in every language. The word "husband"
comes from "husbandry." That's what our sannyasins are doing - gardening, agriculture.... From the word "agro" meaning "industry"... that is husbandry. And when you introduce someone as your husband, do you know what you are saying? Does that poor fellow know that he is being reduced to a farmer? But that's the whole idea; that man is the farmer, and woman is the field! Great ideas!
Man ordinarily remains very much tethered to the mundane, and woman even more so. She defeats man in every possible way. Of course she is the back seat driver, but she is the driver.
A man was stopped for speeding, and the cop was very angry because he was not only speeding, but he had no license, and what he showed as his license was just a ticket for a picture show they were going to. This was too much!
The cop said, "Now I am going to give you a real ticket!"
The wife shouted at the husband, "I have been telling you from the very beginning, but you never listen to me!" And she shouted so loudly that even the cop stopped writing the ticket and listened to what was happening. She said, "Where are your specs in the first place? You cannot see, and you are driving! Moreover you're so drunk that I have been continuously kicking you, yet I don't see any effect at all! It seems you have lost all sensitivity!" Then she turned to the cop and said, "Officer, send him to jail! He deserves at least six months' hard labor; less than that won't teach him anything!"
Even the cop could not understand that much punishment for just a little speeding. He said to the man, "Sir, you can go. God has already punished you enough by giving you this woman as a wife.
That is enough. Even I feel sorry for you. I know why you lost your eyesight. Who would like to see this woman? And I know you are speeding because she is continuously kicking you. I'm really sorry for you." He said, "You go on speeding, but she will always be there. Speed so fast that she is left behind, really behind."
Man and woman both live such a mundane and ugly, really ugly life. I once pointed out to my grandmother the wife of one of my professors as she was passing through my village. I had told her, "My grandmother and my whole family live there and they would be happy to meet you."
I introduced her to my grandmother, and when she had left we both laughed. Neither of us said anything for a few moments. I laughed because my grandmother had had to tolerate the woman.
She laughed, saying, "That's nothing - you have to tolerate her husband. If she is terrible, he must be even more so."
I said, "I can only say this much: he certainly looks uglier than any passport photograph."
I have been teaching my whole life. I was rarely present in my school days either. They had to give me a seventy-five percent attendance record just to get rid of me. Even that was an absolute lie. I was absent ninety-nine percent of the time. That was the case throughout my school days, in high school and college.
In college, I even had an agreement with the principal, B.S. Audholia. He was a beautiful man. He was the principal of a college in Jabalpur, in the very center of India. Jabalpur has many colleges, and his was one of the most prominent. I had been expelled from one college because a professor was not prepared to remain in service if I was not expelled. That was his condition, and he was a respected professor... I may come to the details of that story later.
I had been expelled, naturally. Who cares about a poor student? And the professor was a Ph.D., D.Litt. et cetera, et cetera, and he had served in that college for almost his whole life. Now, to throw him out because of me - whether I was right or wrong was not the question. That's what the principal said to me before he expelled me. He had to give me an explanation, so he called me. He must have thought I was just like any other student, trembling because I was about to be expelled.
He had not expected that I would enter his office like an earthquake.
I shouted at him before he had a chance to say anything. I said, "You have proved yourself to be just a holy cow-dung." I used the Hindi word gobarganesh, which actually means "a statue made from cow-dung," and I hit on his table with my fist so hard that he stood up. I said, "Is there a spring in your table? I hit it, and you stood up! Sit down!" I said it so loudly that he sat down silently. He was afraid that others may hear, and perhaps rush in, particularly the man who was guarding the door.
He said, "Okay, I will sit down. What do you have to say?"
I said, "You call me here and you are asking me what do I have to say? I say that you should expel this other fellow, Doctor S.N.L. Shrivastava. He is just stupid, even with his Ph.D. and D.Litt. - which makes it worse. I did not harm him, I simply asked questions which were completely legitimate. He teaches us logic, and if I am not allowed to use logic in his class, where am I to be logical? You tell me."
He said, "That sounds right. Obviously if he teaches you logic, you have to be logical."
I said, "Then call him, and just see who is logical."
The moment Doctor Shrivastava heard that I was in the principal's office and that he was being called, he escaped to his house. He didn't turn up for three days. I sat there for three days continuously, from the time the office opened till it closed. He finally wrote a letter to the principal, saying, "This cannot go on any longer, and," he wrote, "I don't want to face that boy. Either you expel him or you must relieve me of my duty."
The principal showed me the letter. I said, "Now it is okay. He is not capable of even encountering me in your presence, just once, so that you see who is logical. A taste of logic at least would not have been bad for you. But if he is not able to face me - and this letter is enough proof that he is a
coward - I don't want him thrown out. I cannot be so heartless, because I know his wife and children and his responsibilities. Please expel me right now, and give it to me in writing that I am expelled."
He looked at me and said, "If I expel you it may be difficult for you to get admission in any other college."
I said, "That is my problem. I am a misfit - I have to face these things."
It was after this had happened that I knocked on all the doors of all the principals in the city - it is a city of colleges - and all of them said, "If you were expelled then we cannot take the risk. We have heard the rumors that you have been arguing continuously for eight months with Doctor Shrivastava, and that you did not allow him to teach at all."
When I told the whole story to B.S. Audholia, he said, "I will take the risk, but with a condition." He was a good man, generous, but limited. I don't expect anybody to have unlimited generosity, but unless you have unlimited generosity you have missed the most beautiful experience of life. Yes, it was generous of him to even admit me, but the condition canceled much of it. The condition was good for me, but not for him. For him, it was a crime; for me it was an opportunity to be free.
He made me sign an agreement that I would not attend the philosophy class. I said, "This is perfectly good; in fact, what more could I ask? This is what I would love to do, not attend these idiots' lectures.
I am willing to sign it, but remember, you also have to sign an agreement saying that you will give me seventy-five percent attendance."
He said, "That is a promise. I cannot give it in writing because it would create complications, but it's a promise."
I said, "I take your word, and I trust you."
And he kept his word. He gave me ninety percent attendance although I never attended the philosophy class in his college, even once.
I really did not attend primary school much because the river was so attractive, and its call was irresistible. So I was always at the river - not alone of course, but with many other students. Then there was the forest beyond the river, and there was so much real geography to explore. Who bothered about the dirty map that they had in the school? I was not concerned where Constantinople was, I was exploring on my own: the jungle, the river - there were so many other things to do.
For example, as my grandmother had slowly taught me to read, I started reading books. I don't think anybody before or after me had ever been so involved in the library of that town. Now they show everybody the place where I used to sit, and the place where I used to read and write notes. But in fact they should show people that this was the place from where they wanted to throw me out. They threatened me again and again.
But once I started reading, a new dimension opened. I swallowed the whole library, and I started reading the books that I love most to my grandmother at night. You will not believe it, but the first book I read to her was THE BOOK OF MIRDAD. That began a long series.
Of course once in a while, she used to ask, in the middle of a book, the meaning of a certain sentence, or passage, or a whole chapter; just the gist of it. I would say to her, "Nani, I have been reading it to you, and you have not heard it?"
She said, "You know, when you read I become so interested in your voice that I completely forget what you are reading. To me, you are my Mirdad. Unless you explain it to me, Mirdad will remain absolutely unknown as far as I am concerned."
So I had to explain to her, but that was a great discipline to me. To explain, to help the other person who is willing to go a little deeper than he could go on his own, to hold him by the hand, slowly, slowly, that became my whole life. I have not chosen it, not in the way it was chosen for J. Krishnamurti. It was imposed upon him by others. In the beginning even his speeches were written either by Annie Besant or Leadbeater; he simply repeated them. He was not on his own. It was all pre-planned, and done methodically.
I am an unplanned man, that is why I stay still wild. Sometimes I wonder what I am doing here, teaching people to be enlightened; and once they become enlightened, I immediately start teaching them how to become unenlightened again - what am I doing?
I know now the time is coming closer when many of my sannyasins will just pop up into enlightenment. And I have started preparing, and working on the ground and the science of how to unenlighten so many enlightened souls again. This is what I have been doing. A strange kind of work, but I have enjoyed it to the fullest, and still I am enjoying it. I am going to enjoy to the very last breath, or even after it. I'm a little crazy you know, so I can do that, although no crazy man has done that yet. But somebody has to do it someday. Somebody has to break the ice.