It is always today

Fri, 22 June 1980 00:00:00 GMT
Book Title:
Osho - Tao - The Golden Gate, Vol 2
Chapter #:
am in Buddha Hall
Archive Code:
Short Title:
Audio Available:
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The first question:

Question 1:



Anand Katyayani,

The ego exists on misery - the more misery the more nourishment for it. In blissful moments the ego totally disappears, and vice versa: if the ego disappears, bliss starts showering on you. If you want the ego, you cannot forgive, you cannot forget - particularly the hurts, the wounds, the insults, the humiliations, the nightmares. Not only that you cannot forget, you will go on exaggerating them, you will emphasize them. You will tend to forget all that has been beautiful in your life, you will not remember joyous moments; they serve no purpose as far as the ego is concerned. Joy is like poison to the ego, and misery is like vitamins.

You will have to understand the whole mechanism of the ego. If you try to forgive, that is not real forgiveness. With effort, you will only repress. You can forgive only when you understand the stupidity of the whole game that goes on within your mind. The total absurdity of it all has to be seen through and through, otherwise you will repress from one side and it will start coming from another side. You will repress in one form; it will assert in another form - sometimes so subtle that it is almost impossible to recognize it, that it is the same old structure, so renovated, refurnished, redecorated, that it looks almost new.

The ego lives on the negative, because the ego is basically a negative phenomenon; it exists on saying no. No is the soul of the ego. And how can you say no to bliss? You can say no to misery, you can say no to the agony of life. How can you say no to the flowers and the stars and the sunsets and all that is beautiful, divine? And the whole existence is full of it - it is full of roses - but you go on picking the thorns; you have a great investment in those thorns. On the one hand you go on saying, "No, I don't want this misery," and on the other hand you go on clinging to it. And for centuries you have been told to forgive.

But the ego can live through forgiving, it can start having a new nourishment through the idea that, "I have forgiven. I have even forgiven my enemies. I am no ordinary person." And, remember perfectly well, one of the fundamentals of life is that the ordinary person is one who thinks that he is not; the average person is one who thinks that he is not. The moment you accept your ordinariness, you become extraordinary. The moment you accept your ignorance, the first ray of light has entered in your being, the first flower has bloomed. The spring is not far away.

Jesus says: Forgive your enemies, love your enemies. And he is right, because if you can forgive your enemies you will be free of them, otherwise they will go on haunting you. Enmity is a kind of relationship; it goes deeper than your so-called love.

Savita has asked a question that, "Osho, why a harmonious love affair seems to be dull and dying?"

For the simple reason because it is harmonious; it loses all attraction for the ego; it seems as if it is not. If it is absolutely harmonious you will completely forget about it. Some conflict is needed, some struggle is needed, some violence is needed, some hatred is needed. Love - your so-called love - does not go very deep; it is only skin-deep, or maybe not even so deep. But your hate goes very deep; it goes as deep as your ego.

Jesus is right when he says, "Forgive," but he has been misunderstood for centuries. Buddha says the same thing - all the awakened ones are bound to say the same thing. Their languages can differ, naturally - different ages, different times, different people - they have to speak different languages, but the essential core cannot be different. If you cannot forgive, that means you will live with your enemies, with your hurts, with your pains.

So on the one hand you want to forget and forgive, because the only way to forget is to forgive - if you do not forgive you cannot forget - but on the other hand there is a deeper involvement.

Unless you see that involvement, Jesus and Buddha is not going to help. Their beautiful statements will be remembered by you, but they will not become part of your lifestyle, they will not circulate in your blood, in your bones, in your marrow. They will not be part of your spiritual climate; they will remain alien, something imposed from the outside; beautiful, at least it appeals intellectually, but existentially you will go on living the same old way.

The first thing to remember is: ego is the most negative phenomenon in existence. It is like darkness.

Darkness has no positive existence; it is simply absence of light. Light has a positive existence; that's why you cannot do anything directly with darkness. If your room is full of darkness, you cannot put the darkness out of the room, you cannot throw it out, you cannot destroy it by any means directly.

If you try to fight with it, you will be defeated. Darkness cannot be defeated by fighting. You may be a great wrestler but you will be surprised to know that you cannot defeat darkness. It is impossible, for the simple reason that darkness does not exist. If you want to do anything with darkness you will have to go via light. If you don't want darkness, bring light in. If you want darkness, then put the light off. But do something with light; nothing can be done with darkness directly. The negative does not exist - so is the ego.

That's why I don't say to you: Forgive. I don't say to you: Don't hate; love. I don't say to you that drop all your sins and become virtuous. Man has tried all that and it has failed completely. My work is totally different. I say: Bring light into your being. Don't be bothered by all these fragments of darkness.

And at the very center of darkness is ego. Ego is the center of darkness. You bring light - the method is meditation - you become more aware, you become more alert. Otherwise you will go on repressing, and whatsoever is repressed has to be repressed again and again and again. And it is an exercise in futility, utter futility. It will start coming up from somewhere else. It will find some other, weaker point in you.

I come across every day so many questions which show how negativity asserts, in how many subtle ways. Just the other day I was joking that Mukta has asked me: Can she bring a 1939 model Rolls Royce for me? I said, "I am no more interested in anything old and rotten. You can call it a vintage car, you can call it antique, and you can call it beautiful names, but the truth is: for forty years so many rotten people have used it... I don't want to use it any more."

Yatra immediately wrote a question to me: "Osho, don't you have any taste? Old things also have their beauty." Yatra may not be knowing, may not be aware that this is a form of negativity. I was simply joking, otherwise why I should be speaking on Ko Hsuan? Twenty-five centuries old...

But immediately... A chance cannot be missed. If you can say something against me, you will not miss the chance.

Just today I have received another question from Atta, that "You use so many times the word 'I', 'me', 'my', 'my sannyasins'. You seem to be the greatest ego around."

I can stop using "I", "me", "my", "my sannyasins" - that won't help. These are just words, and perfectly utilitarian. I also use the word "darkness", although it does not exist. It has never existed, it cannot exist. Just by using the word "darkness", darkness does not start existing. But Atta must be waiting for some opportunity to say something aggressive to me, to be in some way violent to me.

This is natural, because sannyas means surrender, and when you surrender then more often than not you are repressing your ego. It will find its way from somewhere to assert.

It is not just a coincidence that Buddha's own brother, Devadatta, tried many times to kill him. His own cousin-brother... Why? Why he was so antagonistic to him? And he was also his disciple. But they were contemporaries, of the same age. They were brought up in the same palace, educated by the same teachers in the same academy, played together. And then Buddha became enlightened, and there was deep jealousy in Devadatta. First he tried on his own to become enlightened; he could not. So, unwillingly, reluctantly, he surrendered to Buddha. He must have said with deep resistance, "BUDDHAM SHARANAM GACHCHHAMI; I take shelter into the Buddha, into your feet."

But deep down somewhere he must be thinking that, "We belong to the same royal family, the same blood, the same education. We have played together. So why I should surrender to this man?" And then, once he started going a little into meditation, just a little, few experiences of meditation, and he started gathering a following around himself He started to spread the rumor that he has also become enlightened.

Buddha called him, that "You WILL become enlightened; there is no problem about it. But right now you are just on the way. Don't miss this opportunity." This offended him very much. Immediately all repressed resistance asserted - he revolted. He took away few people those who had become his friends and followers, away from Buddha. And their whole effort was: How to kill this man?

Judas was the cause of Jesus' death, and Judas was the most intellectual disciple of Jesus.

Remember it. Never forget it, that he was the most sophisticated disciple of Jesus. All others were very unsophisticated, simple people, almost primitive people: villagers, fishermen, carpenters, potters, weavers; except Judas nobody was educated. Judas was really far more educated than Jesus himself, far more informed. And he was waiting that sooner or later, he will be the head. Once Jesus is removed from the scene, he will be the head of the whole commune. And there seemed to be no possibility of Jesus ever dying before him. Finally he decided that it is time that this man should be removed forcibly.

Judas was the culprit, the real murderer. He sold Jesus only in thirty silver coins. He was thinking that this is the only way to remove Jesus from the scene, then he can take over the leadership of the group, of the commune. There must have been deep down a hurt ego.

It has always happened that way. Mahavira's own disciple, Makkhali Ghosal, revolted against him and he started spreading the rumor that "Mahavira is not the true enlightened person, I am the true enlightened person." When Mahavira heard it he laughed. When Mahavira came to the place where Ghosal was staying, he went to see him and he said, "Makkhali Ghosal, have you gone mad? What are you doing?"

And the man must have been immensely cunning. He said, "I am not your disciple, remember; the man who used to be your disciple is dead. The body is of Makkhali Ghosal, but a great spirit has entered into the body. The spirit of Makkhali Ghosal has left. I am a totally different person, can't you see?"

Mahavira laughed and he said, "I can see perfectly well. You are the same stupid fellow, and you are still doing stupid things. Don't waste time! Put your energies in becoming enlightened yourself Why be worried about me - whether I am truly enlightened or not. If you are not my disciple, Makkhali Ghosal, if you are a totally different spirit who has entered, I accept. If you say, I accept it. But then why you are concerned with me? Twenty-four hours you are speaking against me. That simply shows that you are still carrying some grudge against me."

It is very essential to understand because you are all disciples here, and you all will be carrying some grudge or other against me, for the simple reason because I am trying to destroy your ego.

That I have to do; that's the function of the Master, to destroy your ego. And you can become very revengeful, and you can carry deep wounds through it.


For the simple reason that they are all that you have got. And you go on playing with your old wounds so that they keep fresh in your memory. You never allow them to heal.

A man was sitting in a compartment in a train. Across from him was sitting a Catholic priest who had a picnic basket beside him. The man had nothing else to do so he just watched the priest.

After a while the priest opened the picnic basket and took out a small cloth which he placed carefully on his knees. Then he took out a glass bowl and placed it on the cloth. Then he took out a knife and an apple, peeled the apple, cut it up, put the pieces of apple in the bowl. Then he picked up the bowl, leaned over and tipped the apple out of the window.

Then he took out a banana, peeled it, cut it up, put it in the bowl, and tipped it out of the window.

The same with a pear and a little tin of cherries and a pineapple, and a pot of cream - he tipped them all out of the window after carefully preparing them. Then he cleaned the bowl dusted off the cloth, and put them back in the picnic basket.

The man who had been watching the priest in amazement, finally asked, "Excuse me, Father, but what are you doing there?"

To which the priest replied coolly making fruit salad."

"But you are tipping it all out of the window," said the man.

"Yes," said the priest. "I hate fruit salad."

People go on carrying things that they hate. They live in their hatred. They go on fingering their wounds so they don't heal; they don't ALLOW them to heal - their whole life depends on their past.

Unless you start living in the present, you will not be able, Katyayani, to forget and forgive the past.

I don't say to you: Forget and forgive all that has happened in the past; that is not my approach. I say: Live in the present that is the positive way to approach existence. Live in the present. That is another way of saying: Be more meditative, more aware, more alert, because when you are alert, aware, you are in the present.

Awareness cannot be in the past and cannot be in the future. Awareness knows only the present.

Awareness knows no past, no future; it has only one tense, the present. Be aware, and as you will start enjoying the present more and more, as you will feel the bliss of being in the present, you will stop doing this stupid thing that everybody goes on doing. You will stop going into the past. You will not have to forget and forgive, it will simply disappear on its own accord. You will be surprised - where it has gone? And once the past is no more there, future also disappears because future is only a projection of the past. To be free from past and future is to taste freedom for the first time, is to taste God. And in that experience one becomes whole, healthy; all wounds are healed. Suddenly there are no more any wounds; you start feeling a deep well-being arising in you. That well-being is the beginning of transformation.

The second question:

Question 2:


Gourishankar Mehta,

It seems you must be a total stranger to this place, otherwise such a question is not possible, because I have got no teaching. I am not a teacher at all; I don't teach you anything.

Teaching means imparting information. Teaching is basically indoctrination, giving you certain beliefs, conditioning your mind for a certain ideology. I am against all ideologies, I am against all doctrines, because they all help and strengthen your mind. My work here consists to help you to go beyond the mind. You are not supposed to learn something here but to unlearn; you have to go through an unconditioning process.

And I don't recondition you. That is what is being done by Christians, Hindus, Mohammedans and everybody else. If a Hindu wants to become a Christian he will have to go through two processes:

one will be he will have to be unconditioned as a Hindu and then reconditioned as a Christian. But only conditioning changes, nothing else. Your garments change, your consciousness remains the same.

Consciousness is experienced only when you are unconditioned and not reconditioned again, when you are left alone to yourself, utterly innocent. I call it purity.

That's the essence of Ko Hsuan's Tao. These sutras of Ko Hsuan are called THE CLASSIC OF PURITY. Tao has no doctrines, no teachings. It believes in absolute emptiness of the mind, in nothingness. When you are utterly empty you come in contact with the beyond. The beyond is not far away, but you are so full of rubbish, so full of junk, that there is no space for the beyond to enter in you. It is like a room is full of furniture. Empty the room of all furniture: on the one hand the room is emptied, all furniture is removed from the room; on the other hand the room is becoming full of emptiness, the sky is entering, the space is entering - the room is becoming more spacious. That's what happens when your being is unconditioned and left alone.

I don't want to teach you anything at all. I don't want you to believe in God because what is the need to believe in God? When God can be experienced, why believe? Belief is a poor substitute.

When you can have the real thing why go for plastic flowers? When you can grow the red roses, why hanker for something unreal and synthetic?

All beliefs are unreal. I would like you to be knowers, not believers. I would like you to be seers, not Hindus, not Christians, not Buddhists. Yes, I would like you to be a Buddha, an awakened being.

I would like you to be a Christ, but not a Christian. And the difference is tremendous. Friedrich Nietzsche used to say that the first and the last Christian died two thousand years before on the cross. Let me repeat: the first and the last Christian. Friedrich Nietzsche himself was a madman, but sometimes mad people have great insights which the so-called sane go on missing. Nietzsche has many insights. This is one of... very significant statement that he has made.

Be a Christ. Why not be crowneed by the experience of God himself? I don't teach you about God because all teachings are about. The word "about" means around. All teachings are about and about around and around; they go in circles. They make you knowledgeable but they don't make you knowers.

Gourishankar Mehta, I don't have any teaching to teach. I have certainly a truth but it cannot be taught. Truth can only be caught, it can never be taught. That is the whole meaning of satsanga, of being in the company of a Master. That is the whole purpose of sannyas: being in tune with me.

Truth is a transmission beyond words. Words move from one mind to the other mind. What I am saying to you is from one mind to another mind. What is not said is far more important. Listen to my silences the pauses in between. Listen to the gaps. When you are in tune with me, in deep harmony with me, when there is no fight going on between you and me - no resistance, no conflict no argument... And there is no need of any argument because I am not trying to convince you of anything, I am not trying to persuade you to become followers, to become imitators. My effort is totally different: it is that of communion, not of communication.

When two hearts are beating together in rhythm, in a kind of synchronicity, when they are dancing together hand in hand, in a deep loving embrace, then something is transmitted, something jumps from one heart to the other heart. It is like bringing an unlit candle close to alit candle. when you bring the unlit candle very close to the lit candle; the flame jumps from the lighted candle to the unlit candle. The lighted candle loses nothing, but the unlit candle gains infinity.

I have no teaching. I don't give any discipline to my sannyasins. I want them to be individuals, I don't want to make them carbon copies. I would like them to be themselves, authentically themselves.

My whole longing is to create individuality in you, not a collective mind. Christianity is creating a collective mind. mohammedans are creating another collectivity, Hindus still another, and so on and so forth.

My trust is not in the collective mind, my trust is in the individual. I am an individualist; I believe in the supreme value of the individual. there is nothing higher than the individual.

There is a beautiful saying of a Baul mystic, Chandidas: SAHAR UPAR MANUSATYA. TAHAR UPAR NAHIN. Chandidas says: The highest truth is the individual man, there is nothing higher than that, there is nothing more valuable than that.

The individual is not a means to anything - to communism, to socialism, to Hinduism, to Jainism, to Buddhism, to fascism. And up to now, hitherto, for thousands of years man has been treated always as a means to some end - any stupid end is enough excuse to sacrifice millions of individuals.

I don't want to sacrifice any individual, because there is nothing higher than the individual My respect for the individual is absolute, unconditional. The individual is an end unto himself. I want to help you to support you. so that you can be yourself.


There is something fundamental, but it is not teaching. It is my love, not my ideology. It is my drunkenness that would like to impart to you, a spark that I would like to ignite your soul with it, a fire.

A dervish, a Catholic priest, and a Rajneesh sannyasin met in a railway station and got round to talking about religion.

"Well," said the dervish, "we Sufis are the vital force in Islam. We are the sap that keeps the tree green. We are constantly infusing the old traditions with fresh insights and energy. But, of course, Islam is a very conservative religion, and so we have to put the new wine in old bottles to make it acceptable."

The priest, who was an American Jesuit, said, "I can sure understand that. We Jesuits are the dynamic force in the Catholic Church. We are the ones who give it intellectual stature and keep the faith up-to-date with a rapidly changing world. Naturally our Lord's teachings remain eternally true and valid, but we have to give the Church new forms to deal with modern needs. You might say that we put old wine in old bottles to make it palatable."

The sannyasin remained silent until the dervish nudged him and asked, "And what do you do, my friend and this guru of yours?"

The sannyasin replied casually, "Oh, we drink the wine and break the bottles."

The third question:

Question 3:



This place is really becoming more and more beautiful!

You are welcome, Michael Potato-Singh. Reverend Banana is here. You have come, and I hope your friend Michael Tomato, who wrote to me from Bangalore, will be also coming soon.

It seems that Michael Potato and Michael Tomato are not two persons. Their handwriting is exactly alike. If it is a joke, it is beautiful. I love jokes. But it may not be a joke, it may be a serious affair.

You may be a split personality, you may be a schizophrenic - one day Michael Potato, another day Michael Tomato. And who knows what else you are going to reveal to us in future!

But anyway, my sannyasins are all vegetarians. We need all the potatoes and tomatoes and the bananas. So please remain here, and call all your friends also. We are not cannibals - pure vegetarians. So we will eat only that part of you - the cabbage part, the cauliflower part, the banana part. I don't think that there is anybody here like Idi Amin who would like to eat you totally.

I have heard:

Idi Amin was on an airplane flight, and the air hostess brought the menu. He looked at the menu, threw it away, and said, "Please bring me the passenger list."

It is good that you were not there. In fact, I myself like potato chips once in a while. Good that you have arrived. You are welcome.

Michael Potato's first question is: DO YOU KNOW WHY THE JEWS ARE ANGRY WITH MOSES?

I have been a Jew in my past life, so I know. They are angry because if Moses had taken a left instead of right, they would have had the oil.

And Michael Potato asks - second question:


Yes, Michael Potato. I am tremendously interested in such metaphysical questions... They circle around the convents and make the nuns nervous.

And Michael Potato's third question is:


Only one question, Michael Potato: Are you asleep?

And the fourth question:


No, just the jerks like you!

The fourth question:

Question 4:



Aruna Bharti,

IT IS ONE OF THE MOST significant things to understand that the very desire for NIRVANA is the only hindrance. You can desire money, you can desire power, you can desire prestige, but you cannot desire nirvana; that is a contradiction in terms. NIRVANA simply means the understanding that all desires are futile - the desire for NIRVANA included.

Desire as such is absurd. To be in a desireless state is what NIRVANA is all about. Everybody who comes here comes with a certain desire. The people who come always come with a background. If they have been brought up to believe in God, they come in search of God. If they have been brought up with the belief in self-realization, if they have been taught that the most important thing in life is to know thyself, they come here to know their innermost being, their supreme self If they have been brought up and conditioned that the ultimate search is for MOKSHA, NIRVANA, enlightenment, then they come with that desire.

Everybody who comes is bound to come with a certain desire. That is natural, otherwise you would not be here. But once you are here, as you start getting deeper and deeper into understanding me and what is happening here, you start seeing that desiring is the root cause of all misery. There is no other misery than desiring. It is desiring that is covering your eyes like a veil. It does not allow you to see that which is because you are always concerned about that which should be. Desire leads you into the future, and the future is not yet. And whatsoever you desire comes from the past.

Aruna Bharti, you must have been brought up with a Buddhist conditioning, otherwise why NIRVANA? Why not God? Why not moksha? Why not truth? You have come here to seek and search for NIRVANA for the simple reason that you have been told from the very beginning that unless one finds NIRVANA there is no fulfillment, there is no bliss, there is no joy, life remains a misery.

But that is a basic misunderstanding. Buddha's whole effort was to help people see that desiring...

it is not the question WHAT you desire, the question is that you desire. Desiring in itself is the cause of misery because it takes you away from the present, from the now, from the here. The very word NIRVANA means cessation of desire, so how can you desire NIRVANA? That is impossible; that is getting into a contradiction.

Many Buddhist monks have come to me, and they have asked how to attain NIRVANA. And I have to tell them that don't be stupid. The very idea of attainment is egoistic, the very idea of attaining any goal whatsoever, of achieving any goal whatsoever is a mind game; it is a mind trip, it is an ego number. And NIRVANA simply means seeing all this and through seeing it, it drops. Not that you have to drop... Remember this: if you drop, you will always drop for some other desire. You can drop, but then immediately your mind will say, "Why you are dropping this?" It will ask for another desire to be replaced.

Many times it has happened: People come here to meditate, to attain peace of mind, and they don't know that the very idea of attaining anything is the cause of remaining into a turmoil. Peace of mind simply means you have dropped the whole nonsense of achieving, attaining, you have dropped the very idea of being ambitious about anything, worldly or other-worldly. And of course, desire is always impatient. They want it quick, like instant coffee, because why waste time? So they come to me and they ask, "How long it will take to attain peace of mind?

I say, "If you are asking how long, then you will make it very difficult; it will become almost impossible to attain. You forget about time. Time is mind. You forget about time." Present is not part of time - time consists only of past and future; present is beyond time. "You forget about time," I say to them, "and don't be impatient."

They say, "Okay. If we are not impatient, if we forget time, how long it will take to attain?"

Do you see the contradiction? They are again in the same rut; from the back door... Now such a person cannot meditate because constantly he will be thinking, "When it is going to happen? When?

One hour has passed and it has not happened yet. Two clays have passed and it has not happened yet. Seven days have passed and it has not happened yet." He will be constantly looking at his clock.

Again and again, "When? So much time has gone." He will remain tense, he will not relax. Desires don't allow you to relax; they keep you tense, they keep you anxious.

It is good, Aruna Bharti, that you say:


It is good that the desire for NIRVANA has disappeared. But remember, this wanting to be part of a Buddhafield may be just another way of the same desire - a new name, with a new label. Let this also go. You are here. While you are here be totally here. Why bother about the tomorrow? The tomorrow never comes, it is always today. Have you not experienced it? The tomorrow never comes.

Your whole life is the experience that the tomorrow is nonexistential. It is always today. Be here now, and you are part of the Buddhafield. Now don't create a new desire, otherwise it will create the same misery.

You say: I DON'T CARE A BIT ABOUT nirvana ANYMORE...

No, you must be caring a little bit. otherwise why you say, "I don't care a bit about NIRVANA anymore"?

When one is finished with something, one is so totally finished that one forgets all about it; one does not move to the opposite extreme. The opposite extreme is also part of the same desire. First you are too much attached, then you start becoming too much detached - another extreme. A man is running after money, then one day he gets tired, then he starts running away from money. He says, "I don't want even to see money, I don't want even to touch money." But this is the same man.

The greatest disciple of Mahatma Gandhi, Vinoba Bhave, does not look at money. If you take money in front of him he immediately closes his eyes. What does it mean? It simply means that still somewhere the attachment goes on lingering. Now, behind all this detachment it is the same attachment. Now attachment is standing on its head, it is doing SIRSHASAN, a headstand. But it is the same attachment.

My approach is neither of attachment nor of detachment, but of simple understanding.


Who has said to you that you are not worthy of it? God never creates any unworthy people - he cannot: existence always creates the most beautiful people possible. The sinners are as much beautiful as the saints. They have their own beauty. I have been with saints, I have been with sinners, and my experience has been the sinners have more innocence than your so-called saints.

Sinners are more simple people, more innocent people than your so-called saints.

Your saints are cunning, clever; in fact, their sainthood is nothing but cunningness and cleverness.

They are very calculative; they are taking each step with deep calculation. They are very greedy - of course, they are greedy tor the other world, but greed is greed; they are greedy for God, they are greedy for heavenly pleasures. But what pleasures they are imagining in heaven? The same pleasures; it is not going to be much different. All the religions say that there are beautiful women, very young, and they always remain young. Now the scriptures are five thousand years old, but the women there are still young.

There are religions which believe that there are streams of wine in heaven, trees of gold, and flowers of diamonds and emeralds. So what is wrong with this world? Here they teach: Renounce your family, your wife, your husband, your children. Here they say renounce, and there they allow you the same rewards millionfold. There are wish-fulfilling trees, KALPAVRIKSHAS: you just sit underneath the tree and any desire, any wish, and immediately it is fulfilled - not even a single moment is lost.

Then there seems to be no difference at all.

Sinners are far more simple people.

A guy comes to heaven s door and asks Saint Peter for permission to enter.

"Do you really want to come in?" asks Saint Peter.

"Yes," answers the man.

"Your name?"


"Aristotle Onassis?" inquires Saint Peter.

"That's it," is the reply.

"Ah," says Saint Peter, "you are the famous shipowner from Greece who had that marvelous yacht that crosses the Mediterranean, and who gave incredible parties with lots of champagne and caviar?"

"Yes, that is me," says onassis.

"You are the one who had that beautiful woman called Jacqueline, who once was the First Lady of America?" continues Saint Peter.

"Yes, that is me."

"Well, well. So you are the one who had that incredible island with a whole bunch of servants, pools, flowers and everything?"

"Yes, that is me."

"You are the one who had carte blanche in the best restaurants of the world, and was always seen with the most beautiful women?"

"Yes, that is me."

"Okay, okay," says Saint Peter. "You can come in, but you are going to find this place a shit, man!"

So why not be Aristotle onassis here? Why bother about the paradise and the beautiful women and the streams of wine and wish-fulfilling trees? All these things are possible here.

The sinners are satisfied with the momentary, and the saints want the permanent. Then who is greedy?

It is good, Aruna Bharti, but drop this idea that you are not worthy. I have never come across any man who is not worthy of being blissful. It is up to you. If you want to be blissful, nothing hinders you except your own unintelligence. And that unintelligence can be dropped very easily. Except your ego, nothing hinders you and that ego is nonexistential. And that ego does not allow you to be intelligent because it lives on stupidity, it lives on misery, it lives on anguish. Everyone is worthy, otherwise you would not have been.

Such a beautiful gift of life has been given to you. How you can be unworthy? And I accept you totally as you are: worthy, unworthy, good, bad, saint, sinner. I never ask anybody, "Who you are?

What are your qualifications? What are your virtues?" I never ask. Whosoever you are, if God accepts you, if existence accepts you, who I am to reject you?

People say to me, "You go on giving sannyas to everybody?" I say to them, "If God goes on giving life to everybody, then what is wrong in giving sannyas to everybody?" Life is far more valuable. And if God someday asks me, then it is between me and him. There is going to be a great argument, that "You go on giving life to everybody, so what is wrong in giving them sannyas? Sannyas simply means to help them to live life totally. You have given life, I am giving them just the art how to live it totally, intensely, passionately."

The fifth question:

Question 5:



There is nothing special about it. I just told you in one of my lives, past lives, I have been a Jew, and Jews cannot talk without moving their hands - impossible.

One thousand miles off the Brazilian shore, a boat full of sannyasins sunk. Unfortunately there was no lifeboat and no one on board could swim. For some mysterious reason however, the Jews were able to stay above the water, and only they survived.

When the Jews approached the shore, the village people, mostly fisherman, could not believe their eyes. They saw the strange people in the water moving towards the shore, all of them making strange arm gestures. Being superstitious the people of the village thought that the Jews must be black magicians thrown out by the sea. Once the Jews stepped into the shore the village priest cautiously approached them and asked, "How did you all arrive here without a lifeboat?"

And the Jews answered with sweeping arm gestures, "Talking, talking."

The sixth question:

Question 6:



Jaganath Prasad,

Do you really mean it will be welcome, or it is just politeness? If you cannot decide, how can you welcome something which I have not even uttered yet? I may say to you, "Take the jump and become a sannyasin." But I know you for ten years: indecisiveness is your very soul - you have never been able to decide anything about yourself I have seen you deciding many things, and by the time you decide the opportunity is gone. You wanted to marry a woman and by the time you decided, she was already married.

You are a politician and politicians are of wavering minds, otherwise they will not be politicians.

Politicians are a little bit insane; they are not centered, hence they cannot decide. And this is not for the first time you have asked me about sannyas either. This must be at least the seventh time in these ten years - again and again you have asked, that you cannot decide.

Remember one thing: death is coming closer every day and death will not ask you whether you want to die or not - it won't leave the decision to you - it will simply take you away. Before that happens let something essential grow in your life.

And what can you lose by becoming a sannyasin? You don't have anything to lose. You cannot lose anything because, in the first place, to lose you have to have it. I know you are absolutely poor. By "poor" I don't mean that you don't have money; by "poor" I mean you don't have any inner richness.

Deep down, every politician suffers from inferiority complex, he suffers from inner poverty. He suffers from such inner emptiness, meaninglessness, that he wants to fill it up with some power, some prestige, some fame. And you ha- e tried your whole life. And it is not that you have not succeeded - you have succeeded in your own way - but this is to be absolutely taken note of whether you fail in politics or succeed, you always fail. Those who t;ail, of course, they fail. And those who succeed, they also fail.

You have heard the proverb: "Nothing succeeds like success." I don't believe in it. I have changed it. I say, "Nothing fails like success," because once you have been successful in something then suddenly you become aware that success is there but your inner emptiness remains the same. In fact, now you feel it more - you feel it more because even the desire for success that was filling it somehow, keeping you occupied, is no more there. You have succeeded: you have the money, you have the power, you have name, you have fame, and the inner emptiness is still there, intact.

Nothing has changed there.

If you ask me, Jaganath Prasad, then it is time to take the jump. It is enough - ten years you have been thinking. How long one is going to think about it? Either take the jump and become a sannyasin or forget all about it. Never ask the question again.

A man in a ragged and frayed blue check suit approached a farmer for a job.

"I will do anything," he said, "just so long as you feed me."

Now the farmer did not really need any help, but he remembered the huge pile of cow manure in the barn that needed to be spread on the fields. He snickered to himself at the revolting task, and said, "Follow me. You see this huge pile of shit? Well, I want it spread deep and thick and even on the east forty."

The man in the checkered suit smiled amiably and set to work. It was a huge pile of shit. The farmer thought it would take him at least a week to complete the job, so he was very surprised at the end of the first day to find the manure pile completely gone and the east forty perfectly covered in a deep, thick, even layer of shit.

"Well, you are a wonderful worker," he exulted. "Come on in for some roast beef, canned peas, mashed potatoes and gravy." They had a pleasant evening and went to bed early.

The next day the farmer took the man out to a little shack where he stored the potatoes. "You have got an easy job today," he said. "All you do is to go through this pile of potatoes one by one and put the big ones over here and the little ones in a pile over there. Have a good time, and I will see you just before dinner time." And off the farmer went.

Returning around five-thirty the farmer found the ragged man slumped on the original pile of potatoes, sobbing uncontrollably.

"What is the matter?" inquired the farmer. "Yesterday you moved a mountain of bullshit single- handedly, and today you did not even begin your work!"

"Well, you see, I used to be a politician before the great crash," said the man, "and you know how politicians are - we love to spread the shit around, but when it comes to making decisions..."

The last question:

Question 7:



Prem Soma,

Neither to I. I am a madman.

But you are not mad. You should be able to figure it out. What is wrong with you? Are you a Jew, or a Polack, or an Italian?

A man asked his Jewish boss for a raise in salary. The boss said, "What do you mean give you a raise? You don't work here at all. Listen. There are three hundred sixty-five days in the year, three hundred sixty-six this year because it is a leap year. The working day is eight hours. That is one-third of a day. So over the year that is one hundred twenty-two days. The office is shut on Sundays, so that is fifty-two off, making seventy days. Then you have two weeks holiday. Take off fourteen days, which leaves fifty-six. There are four bank holidays, which leaves fifty-two. Then the office is closed on Saturdays, is not it? Well there are fifty-two Saturdays in the year, so you don't do anything here at all. Yet you are asking me for a raise?"

Jews have their own ways of calculating things. If you are a Jew, very calculative, cunning, clever, then it will be difficult for you to understand what I am saying, because what I am saying is not comprehensible to cunning minds. Otherwise it is very simple. It is comprehensible only through innocence. If you are not innocent then it becomes difficult, then it becomes almost impossible to understand what I am saying. otherwise things are so simple that I am saying, that they have never been said in such a simple way.

Or maybe you are a Polack?

Three Europeans, an Englishman, a Frenchman and a Polack, got caught during a South American revolution, and after a quick trial, were all condemned to die in front of the firing squad. The three men agreed that in order to escape death each one would make the firing squad panic by shouting some natural disaster.

The Englishman was first, and when the guards were aiming at him, he shouted, "Earthquake!" The guards panicked and he escaped during the confusion.

Similarly the Frenchman, once against the wall, yelled "Tidal wave!" The guards ducked and he also got away.

Finally, it was the turn of the Polack. The officer in charge ordered, "Ready! Aim!" and the Polack shouted, "Fire!"

Or, Prem Soma, if the worst comes to the worst you may be an Italian.

Arturo is in despair. "What a tragedy!" he cries. "I come back-a last-a night and found-a my wife in-a bed-a with a Chinese."

"What-a did-a you say?" asked his friend.

"What-a could-a I say?" says Arturo. "I don't-a know-a any Chinese!"

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