IN CANADA, WHERE I LIVE, I HAVE BEEN ASKED TO PARTICIPATE IN NATIONAL POLITICS. SHOULD I REFRAIN, GIVEN THE STATE OF POLITICS IN THE WEST, OR SHOULD I ACCEPT AND USE THE EXPERIENCE AS ANOTHER DIMENSION OF MY PROCESS?
Rupananda, it is well known what I think about politics, but I will not say anything to you, this way or that.
My whole approach to my people is that of freedom. You have to act out of your own intelligence. You don't have to depend on my advice.
I go on giving you my experiences, my attitudes, but there is no compulsion that you have to follow them. You are not my followers, you are my friends.
I cannot impose my ideas on someone I love; I give you absolute freedom to do whatsoever your intelligence, your meditativeness allows you. And I don't think you will go wrong.
Just don't be attracted by ambition, don't be attracted by power, because those infatuations are destructive. And the people who become attracted by things like money, power, prestige, miss one thing: that is life.
Balzar has a law about it: Life is what happens to you while you are making other plans.
A politician has no life, he is always making other plans, and meanwhile life goes on slipping by. But still, it is going to be your choice.
I never want to be remembered by you as someone who forced, manipulated, dominated you according to his ideas. I can share everything with you, but the final decision has to be yours, because that's how one matures. If you feel like going into politics, just think what you can contribute, or you will also become part of the whole dirty game that goes on in the name of politics.
You are asking me, "Should I get into the gutter?" I will not prevent you. If you enjoy it is perfectly okay with me! But always remember, don't take part in anything unless you are ready so that you can improve it, you can give it some refinement -- not only about action, but also about talk. Cogglin's Law is: Don't talk unless you can improve the silence. It is a tremendously beautiful statement: Don't talk unless you can improve the silence -- very insightful.
Don't go into politics unless you can improve humanity and you can improve people's humbleness... not getting into a competitive will to power, because that kind of thing happens only when you are feeling empty inside. I have never heard of any politician becoming enlightened -- that will be a contradiction in terms -- nor vice versa, have I ever heard of any enlightened man being a politician.
You think you will be exploring a new dimension through the gutter? Through the gutter you will get into a deeper gutter, a bigger gutter, the main gutter. It is not a dimension; it is simply falling from your intelligence, it is not maturity. A certain retardedness is absolutely necessary in politics. If you feel you qualify...! You have to be continuously lying, you have to be promising things which you know perfectly well you cannot deliver.
Just the other night I was reading about a rabbi who wrote a letter to a friend, but a very strange letter. He wrote a small paragraph and then left almost the whole page, and signed underneath. That is not the way people write a letter. When you write a letter, you sign underneath it... this much gap. The man was also puzzled when he received the letter. He inquired of him, "What is the reason for leaving such a big gap between the letter and the signature?"
He said, "It says in the scriptures, 'Keep yourself as far away from lies as possible.'" But still, if you like there is no problem; there are many sannyasins in the same gutter in different countries. A certain cruelty, inhumanity, cunningness are the basic requirements for you to become a politician. So I am worried whether you have all these prerequisite conditions. Innocence is of no use; that will bring failure. Silence is of no use, truthfulness is of no use, to be sharply intelligent is no use. And remember one thing:
politics gives you power, but it gives you power by making you a beggar. All politicians are beggars, whether they may be presidents or prime ministers.
Every five years, and they are standing on your door with their begging bowl. They are, in fact, servants of the people. At least they have to pretend after each five years. For five years they can believe they are masters, but they cannot befool anybody of intelligence.
And this reminds me that the people from whom you are going to beg for votes are ignorant, prejudiced, are not contemporaries. They belong to past centuries, many centuries back; they are superstitious. If you want to have their votes, you have to fall to their standard; they are not going to rise to your standard.
To be a politician is a tragedy. But still, if you want to make your life a tragedy I have no objection. The whole politics around the world misses anything significant for the future.
It is too much concerned with trivia, small, ugly conflicts. It is not interested in reality to improve the destiny of humanity, to give new dreams to people, to bring more poetry into their lives. On the contrary, it destroys their dreams, it destroys their hopes; it destroys their trust in other human beings, because they have been continuously cheated by the politicians, exploited.
Oscar Wilde has said, "A map of the world that does not include utopia is not worth glancing at." But no politician can remain successfully in politics with a utopian mind; he has to be practical, pragmatic. He has to forget fundamental things, that through wrong means you can never reach the right end. Only the right means justify the rightness of your ends. But no politician can manage to follow right means towards right ends. He may talk about right ends, right values, but all his means will be wrong, and through wrong means you never reach to right ends; they don't connect.
You have to be mean. You have to be destructive. If needed, you have to commit all kinds of crime. If you can do all these things, only then you can become a politician. It is an absolutely foolish and absurd game, and particularly for a sannyasin who is searching for higher values, who is looking for inner reality -- who is thinking of beauty, truth, good. Politics is just the opposite. A sannyasin is trying to find his authentic being, and the politician has to create a false personality according to what people need.
A politician has to say things which he does not mean but which satisfy people. He can never speak his mind; in fact, people who have gone deep in understanding the psychology of politics, say in politics mind is not needed at all. We don't see any politician functioning in a way that shows his genius. There have been millions of geniuses, nobody was attracted towards politics, only very mediocre people. In a way they represent the unintelligent, unevolved masses. They are the representatives of the slaves.
I have heard...
A great politician's brain surgery was being done. When the surgeons opened his brain they saw so much rubbish and garbage that they thought it is better to take the whole mind out of the skull and clean it; they have never seen anything so dirty. So they left the politician in anesthesia, so he was not aware, and they went into another room.
Meanwhile, the politician came out of anesthesia, was resting on the bed, when a man came rushing and shouted, "What are you doing here? You have been chosen as the president."
He said, "My God! What am I doing here?" -- and got up.
The surgeons looked from the other room, and said, "Hey! Where are you going? Your brain is here; we are cleaning it!"
The man said, "Now I don't need it! Clean it well and keep it. When I am no longer the president of the country I may need it, but right now there is no problem."
What use is a mind to the president?
Presidents are chosen who have no minds of their own, so they can simply function as rubber stamps.
Politics is a strange world, but if you want to have some taste of the ugliest part of human beings, you can go into politics. Just remember one thing: going in is easy, getting out will be very difficult, almost impossible. It is getting into deep imprisonment by your own desires. But there are people who are jailbirds; they like prison. I have known many politicians; I have not seen anything worthwhile in their lives. They have staked everything just to be in power. And what will these people do with power? They will create more wars, they will create more weapons, they will create more possibilities for a global suicide.
These are my ideas about politics, but these are my ideas, you don't have to follow them.
If you are feeling a certain urge for power, go into it. Of course I cannot bless you. I will feel sad and sorry for your going in a wrong direction, but I cannot prevent you either, because any interference in your life is against my whole approach. So please, meditate over it.
Go around Buddha Hall; you will find Prashanto there, either enlightened or dead! That is far better than going into politics.
I HAVE BEEN IN SOME LONG RELATIONSHIPS FOR MANY YEARS. WHEN I HEAR YOU TALKING ABOUT JEALOUSY AND FIGHTING AND ALL THESE PASSIONATE THINGS IN RELATIONSHIPS, I BECOME REALLY SHAKY, BECAUSE IT SEEMS I NEVER EXPERIENCE THESE THINGS REALLY STRONGLY. LAST NIGHT I GOT VERY SAD ABOUT IT, AND THE QUESTION CAME UP WHETHER I EVER REALLY LOVED SOMEBODY, WHETHER I REALLY DID LET GO AND LOSE CONTROL.
BELOVED MASTER, DO LOVE AND HATE, FIGHTING AND HARMONY, COOLNESS AND PASSION REALLY ALWAYS BELONG TOGETHER?
Anand Vimlan, there are always exceptions. My feeling about you is that you are being sad unnecessarily. Life allows exceptions: very rarely you will find a couple who is not in a love-hate relationship but simply in love. Naturally, this kind of love will have a certain coolness about it, it cannot be hot.
To make it hot, you have to bring the opposite in; then fighting and quarreling and arguing gives a certain excitement to your energies. And when tired of fighting and arguing, you again move -- the pendulum goes on moving between love and hate. When your pendulum moves towards love, you feel strong love because of the contrast. It depends on your likings: people like hotdogs! Dogs are enough, but they want hot dogs!
Your love is of a silent type, peaceful. There are rivers which are mountainous, falling from mountains as waterfalls into the valleys; there is much going on. And there are rivers which flow in the valleys silently, so silent that you cannot see that they are flowing. But I don't think that you have to be sad about it; it is a higher quality of love which is cool, without any excitement, without any heat.
Don't you love ice cream... a cool breeze, a silent house; no pillow fighting, no plates being broken? I know it brings a little spice in life when pillows are going like missiles in the air, but that kind of spice...? That kind of excitement is stupid.
A love that can be cool, and without a hot passion, is a higher quality. Every love should become of that quality.
An ancient seer of this country has made a very strange statement. For centuries in this part of the world, when people get married they go to some master, to some wise man to have his blessings; that is conventional. That is more important than the marriage done by the priest. The blessings of a wise man or an enlightened man, if you can find one, will not be just words. He will shower you with all his love, with all his grace, with all his flowers of silence and peace.
One of the ancient seers of the UPANISHADS has a very strange blessing for couples who come to him: "I bless you, that you will have ten children, and finally the husband will become your eleventh child." It looks absurd -- what kind of blessing is this? But I feel that the man had a great insight.
The growth of love should finally be so cool, so passionless that the husband becomes almost a child to the wife, because a woman is intrinsically a mother. In real love, the woman functions as a mother, even to the husband. How they can hate? But it rarely happens, and as the world has gone farther and farther away from their own selves and silence and peace and coolness, their life as husband and wife has also gone in the same way.
So when I am talking, I am talking not about the exceptions -- now, people like you are exceptions -- I am talking about the general rule. But it is good that you ask the question; it makes my answer complete. I have talked about the majority; now, I am talking about a very small minority in the world -- they are the true lovers. Their love knows no friction, but only deep understanding of each other. So don't be worried about what I have been saying about the majority, about the world at large. You don't have to follow; you are perfectly going right.
Bennett's Accidental Discovery says: First, most auto accidents are caused by people with driver's licenses, so I tore up my license. Secondly, according to the latest statistics, most auto accidents happen within eight miles of your own home, so I moved.
Don't be stupid about these statistics, and about these accidents. Just watch your own inner feeling. If you are feeling happy with your cool and silent, without-any-conflict love, you need not start being childish, immature. You don't have to follow others.
The people who are fighting with their spouses are really very repressed people; their repression is great. All the religions and all the cultures and all the educational institutions are repressing people, teaching them to repress sex. Repressed sex is very poisonous, because then it will not be satisfied with one woman or with one man. That is really the cause of fight, the cause of all jealousies, the cause of making spouses into KGB agents. They are watching each move of the other person.
The husband cannot even look at a beautiful woman passing by if the wife is with him, because even looking at her is going to cause immense trouble at home. It is strange. If you love your wife and your wife loves you, and you see a beautiful flower or a beautiful face or a beautiful moon, there is no difference. But because of repressedness, the wife knows the husband would like to have as many women as possible; she has to be on guard. And because the husband knows his repression, he is aware that wife is also repressed in the same way.
I have heard about a big computer they have invented in New York which answers your questions. A boy went and asked, "Can you tell me where my father is?"
And the computer said, "Your father has gone fishing."
The boy laughed. He said, "This is absolutely wrong. My father has been dead for three years."
The computer laughed and said, "My son, that was the husband of your mother who died three years ago. Your father has gone fishing!"
But this goes on happening because for thousands of years so much sexuality is repressed that it is not possible to be satisfied with one woman, with one man. There is no basic difference, and the moment you put the light off any woman is the same, any man is the same. Small details may be different, but the repressed desire is discontented. A humanity without any sexual repression will not have this kind of relationship which is continuously nagging, fighting, harassing each other.
This is the greatest psychological problem facing humanity: how to get rid of the repression that religions have planted in everybody's unconscious. It has gone so deep in the bones, in the blood, in the marrow, that one existentialist philosopher has said, "I would like to make love to all the women of the earth; still, I cannot say I would be satisfied." He is saying something true, sincerely true. And he is saying something not only about himself, he is saying it about all human beings, men and women both.
But this is madness. You don't say, "I will not feel satisfied unless I have eaten apples from every tree of the world." That kind of statement will not be relevant at all. But the existentialist philosopher's statement has a relevance; he is saying something true. That does not mean that he does not love, but his love is not capable to remove the deep- rooted, repressed sexuality; it is not enough. He wants more, and he wants change.
These are the reasons of conflict. You are fortunate if your life has been moving like a silent river without any unnecessary conflict, friction; otherwise there are everyday scenes, and this continues all your life.
I have heard that ninety-year-old Herbie, who tried to seduce a fifteen-year-old girl was arrested for assault with a dead weapon!
It is saddening. Ninety years old and you are not beyond sex, you are not beyond childish things; it is because of repression.
Man has to be completely released from all kinds of inhibitions and repressions, and love will become a very silent and cool affair.
PASSING THROUGH THE GATE OF THIS MANDIR FOR THE FIRST TIME IN EIGHT YEARS, I FELT A KIND OF FRAGRANCE WHICH HAS STAYED WITH ME EVER SINCE. IS IT POSSIBLE TO TAKE THIS FRAGRANCE WITH ME WHEN I LEAVE?
OH, BELOVED MASTER, IT IS SO BEAUTIFUL, AND I AM SO GRATEFUL TO SPEND THIS TIME WITH YOU, EVEN IF I CANNOT TAKE THIS FRAGRANCE WITH ME.
Prem Maharaj, the fragrance that you have felt in this temple of seekers is not something that you can leave behind. This fragrance contains love, meditativeness, silence, trust, life-affirmative values, a song of gratitude, a dance with the trees and with the stars...
This fragrance is an experience of a totally new atmosphere that does not exist in the outside world. If you meditate, you will become the same temple. Then, wherever you go the fragrance will go with you like a shadow; even others will feel it.
It is not the first time that such a question has come to me. The moment they enter the gate many people have felt suddenly, as if they are entering into another world -- the air is different, the vibe is different -- as if they have come home. And there is bound to be a certain fragrance, because so many people are meditating, and slowly, slowly their inner- being flowers are opening. The whole purpose of all these people to be here is absolutely different from any gathering anywhere outside in the world.
These are the people who are in search of the essential, existential life source. They are at different stages of evolution in consciousness, but they are all radiating something of higher stages. So when you enter the temple, you will find the air is different, the trees are different, the people are different. And if you also become a meditator, as I know you are becoming, this fragrance will start coming from within your own being. Even others may feel it wherever you go.
I want my sannyasins... I have taken away the clothes which made them distinct; I have taken away their malas. But still people feel that they look a little different from others; still the airport officers catch hold of them! In Indian embassies when they go for a tourist visa, they immediately get the idea that they are going to Poona; Poona has become synonymous with my name. And many sannyasins have wondered -- they are not wearing the orange, they are not wearing the mala -- how they have become suddenly suspicious?
A sannyasin will have a certain fragrance, a certain style, a certain way which is subtle; it may not be very apparent to the eyes, but it can be detected.
I would like you to be known as separate from the crowds, not by your clothes not by anything outer, but just by your very being -- your silence, your peace, your love, your eyes.
Every gesture of you should declare that you are a sannyasin.
One day the pope gets a phone call from God. God says to him, "Since you have been such a good pope, I wanted you to be the first to know."
"The first to know what?" asks the pope.
God says, "I have some good news and some bad news. The good news is that from now on, the world will have only one religion."
"That's wonderful," says the pope. "Now everyone will be at peace, and everyone will get along with one another -- that's great. But what is the bad news?"
"In a few days," says God, "you will be receiving a phone call from Ma Anando in Poona!"
That one religiousness is not going to be Catholic or Christian. That one religiousness is going to be this fragrance, Prem Maharaj, that you have been feeling here. Once our people are ready, they will go on spreading it all over the world; it needs it tremendously.
Just remember one thing: Never be miserly. Share your experiences here with me your silences of the heart, your flowering of the being. Go on sharing the song that you have heard here, that music that is all around you.
Sometimes I feel sad for a few people. One old sannyasin, Kabir, wrote a letter to me, saying "Osho, I want to share what has happened to me in all these years living with you.
But can I talk about you without mentioning your name?" This cowardliness should be dropped.
I want you not to be sheep, but lions.
I want you to roar about the experience, because the world is so deaf that unless you roar they won't pay any attention. And the moment you mention my name, even if they are dead, they will wake up! Without my name, they will feel goody-goody, and you will feel very goody-goody. But only with my name, will you be able to judge whether those people have any intelligence, any awareness, any understanding, or whether they are just mediocre people with prejudiced minds.
Share without being miserable, without being miserly, and share with authority. You have nothing to lose.
It is a tremendous challenge to change this whole earth into a paradise, but you will not be able to do that if you are cowardly or miserly. There are many sannyasins who remain silent and don't share just out of the fear that they may be condemned: "You have also fallen from the traditional religion, from the convention," they simply remain quiet.
That's not right; that is not compassionate. That is cruel. If you know something, share it for two reasons, because the humanity needs it, and the second reason is that the more you share, the more you will have of it.
MacTavish, O'Rourke and Hymie Goldberg were mourning the loss of a mutual friend.
MacTavish said, "As you well know, my friends, I am a thrifty Scottish soul. But there is a legend in my family that if one places a wee bit of money in the casket so that it may be buried with the body, it will ease the way into the next world. For the sake of our friend, I will place ten dollars in the casket with him." And with a flourish, he released a ten dollar bill and let it flutter onto the dear departed's breast.
O'Rourke had no intention of being outdone. "Well," he said, "this strikes me as near superstition, but I will also contribute that sum." And a second ten dollar bill joined the first on the dead man's breast.
Goldberg said at once, "Do you think I won't join in this kind deed?" And whipping out his check book, he quickly made out a check for thirty dollars, placed it on the dead man's breast and took the two ten dollar bills as change!
Don't be that miserly. Share with your full heart, because it is not only for the benefit of the other, it is also for the benefit of your own being. The more you share, the more open you will become. Your sharing is not a loss. In the ordinary world of economics, if you give things to people, you lose them.
I have heard...
A man stopped his car by the side of a beggar. He was in a good mood; he had won a lottery. He was surprised by the beggar, because his clothes were very costly, although very old and dirty and rotten, and his face also looked cultured, educated. But life had been hard -- it seems he belonged to a very good family, and some calamity had happened. He stopped his car; he was in a good mood, took out a ten rupee note and gave it to the beggar, and the beggar laughed.
The man said, "Why are you laughing?"
The beggar said, "I am laughing because this is the way I finished all my money, my whole heritage that my father has left. I also used to have a beautiful car, but I was giving to everybody -- whoever needed. I laughed, because if this is the way you are also going, soon you will be standing by my side."
In ordinary economics, when you give things you lose. But in the spiritual world laws change. There, if you DON'T give you lose: if you keep your doors and windows closed, your blissfulness, your silence, all become stale. But if you go on sharing, fresh waters will be coming from the eternal sources of life, and your blissfulness will remain always fresh and fragrant. And it will go on growing wider and wider.
As far as I am concerned this is the only real charity, to share your innermost treasure with people, familiar or strangers, and to turn their eyes also inwards. Because seeing your treasure, they will be reminded of their own treasures. Experiencing your fragrance, you will be putting them on the search of how they can also be so fresh, so fragrant, so graceful. From where can they get this beauty that does not belong to the world, this music without instruments, and this poetic atmosphere without words?
Sharing with people is putting them on the right way: in search. And if they know what happens to the real seeker, they will not go on any wrong path.
The Indian constitution says three things are charitable: giving to the poor, making hospitals for the sick, opening schools for the uneducated. It is a shame that this should be the only kind of charity mentioned in the constitution of a country which knows far higher realms of charity. The constitution was written by people who had no idea -- they were politicians. They could not conceive that there can be some higher charity.
To me these are good but not great. The constitution would have been far richer if it had mentioned sharing your spiritual experiences with those who are poor in spiritual experiences.
I have been fighting for years with the Indian government. They are not ready to believe that this institution is a charitable institution, and they cannot understand that there are deeper treasures, higher consciousnesses, and those who don't have them -- they are poor.
Sharing your spirituality, sharing your meditation, sharing your love at least should have been mentioned in the constitution, particularly of a country which has been for centuries the land which has attracted seekers from all over the world. But this constitution was not written by seers or enlightened people, but by those third-rate politicians, those dwellers of the gutter. They cannot see anything more than the fragrance they feel in the gutter; that is the only fragrance they know of.
I would like you not to be bothered by constitutions and other things. You have to understand the higher economics: share so that you can have more.