Just like the open sky
A FEW MONTHS AGO MY FRIEND AND I WERE VISITING HIS DYING FATHER. LOTS OF PEOPLE WERE AROUND. HIS BODY WAS ABOUT FINISHED. TO MOST PEOPLE HE WAS INDIFFERENT, BUT WHEN EVERYONE LEFT HE SUDDENLY OPENED HIS EYES AND TOLD US, "I FEEL LIKE I HAVE TWO BODIES; ONE BODY IS SICK AND THE OTHER IS COMPLETELY HEALTHY." WE TOLD HIM, "THAT'S RIGHT! THE HEALTHY BODY IS THE REAL YOU, SO STAY WITH THAT ONE." HE SAID, "OKAY," AND CLOSED HIS EYES.
AS WE SAT WITH HIM, THE SICK ENERGY AROUND THE HOSPITAL BED CHANGED. WE COULDN'T BELIEVE THIS NEW ENERGY; IT WAS AS IF WE WERE IN DARSHAN WITH YOU... SUCH BEAUTIFUL SILENCE. I FELT A BIT STRANGE SAYING THESE WORDS TO SOMEONE WHO WAS REALLY EXPERIENCING THIS. WHATEVER I SAID WASN'T REALLY MY EXPERIENCE, JUST SOMETHING I'D THOUGHT ABOUT. AFTER WE LEFT HE IMPROVED FOR A WHILE, WENT HOME AND DIED PEACEFULLY IN HIS BED.
BELOVED OSHO, EVEN THOUGH I'VE BEEN WITH YOU FOR TEN YEARS, I FELT SO IGNORANT IN FRONT OF THIS MAN WHO WAS READY TO LET GO OF EVERYTHING WITH SUCH TRUST AND CLARITY AND PEACE.
Geeta, the experience that you went through always is possible when someone is dying. All that is required is a little alertness. The man who was dying was aware - not much awareness is needed for this experience.
At the moment of death your physical body and your spiritual body start separating. Ordinarily, they are so much involved with each other that you don't feel their separation. But at the moment of death, just before death happens, both the bodies start getting unidentified with each other. Now their ways are going to be different; the physical body is going to the physical elements, and the spiritual body is on its pilgrimage onwards, to a new birth, in a new form, in a new womb.
If the person is a little alert he can see it himself, and because you said to him that the healthier body is you, and the body that is sick and dying is not you.... In those moments, to trust is very easy because it is happening just before the eyes of the person himself; he cannot identify with the body that is falling apart, and he can immediately recognize the fact that he is the healthier one, the deeper one.
But you could have helped the man even a little more - this was good, but not good enough. Even this experience of the man, of getting unidentified with the physical body, immediately changed the energy in the room; it became silent, peaceful.
But if you had learned the art of how to help a dying man, you would not have stopped where you stopped. A second thing was absolutely necessary to tell him because he was in a trusting state - everybody is, at the moment of death.
It is life which creates problems and doubts and postponements, but death has no time to postpone.
The man cannot say, "I will try to see," or, "I will see tomorrow." He has to do it right now, this very moment, because even the next moment is not certain. Most probably he is not going to survive.
And what is he going to lose by trusting? Death anyway, is going to take away everything. So the fear of trust is not there; time to think about it is not there. And a clarity is there that the physical body is getting farther and farther away.
It was a good step to tell him, "You are the healthier body." The second step would have been to tell him, "You are the witness of both the bodies; the body that is dying is physical, and the body that you are feeling is healthy is psychological. But who are you? You can see both the bodies... certainly you must be the third; you cannot be one of these two."
This is the whole process of the bardo. Only in Tibet have they developed the art of dying. While the whole world has been trying to develop the art of living, Tibet is the only country in the world which has developed the whole science and art of dying. They call it the bardo.
If you had told the person, "This is good that you have taken one step, you are out of the physical body; but now you have got identified with the psychological body. You are not even that; you are only awareness, a pure consciousness, a perceptivity...." If you could have helped the person to understand that he is neither this body nor that body, but something bodiless, formless, a pure consciousness, then his death would have been a totally different phenomenon.
You saw the change of energy; you would have seen another change of energy. You saw silence descending; you would have seen music also, a certain dancing energy also, a certain fragrance filling the whole space. And the man's face would have shown a new phenomenon - the aura of light.
If he had taken the second step also, then his death would have been the last death. In the bardo they call it "the great death," because now he will not be born into another form, into another imprisonment; now he will remain in the eternal, in the oceanic consciousness that fills the whole universe.
So remember it - it may happen to many of you. You may be with a friend or with a relative, your mother, your father. While they are dying, help them to realize two things: first, they are not the physical body - which is very simple for a dying man to recognize. Second - which is a little difficult, but if the man is able to recognize the first, there is a possibility of the second recognition too - that you are not even the second body; you are beyond both the bodies. You are pure freedom and pure consciousness.
If he had taken the second step, then you would have seen a miracle happening around him - something, not just silence, but something more alive, something belonging to eternity, to immortality. And all of you who were present there would have been overwhelmed with gratitude that this death has not been a time of mourning, but it has become a moment of celebration.
If you can transform a death into a moment of celebration, you have helped your friend, your mother, your father, your brother, your wife, your husband. You have given them the greatest gift that is possible in existence. And close to death it is very easy. The child is not even worried about life or death; he has no concern. The young man is too much involved in biological games, in ambitions, in becoming richer, in becoming powerful, in having more prestige; he has no time to think of eternal questions.
But at the moment of death, just before death is going to happen, you don't have any ambition. And whether you are rich or poor makes no difference; whether you are a criminal or a saint makes no difference. Death takes you beyond all discriminations of life and beyond all stupid games of life.
But rather than helping people, people destroy that beautiful moment. It is the most precious in a man's whole life. Even if he has lived one hundred years, this is the most precious moment. But people start crying and weeping and showing their sympathy, saying, "This is very untimely, it should not happen." Or they start consoling the person, saying, "Don't be worried, the doctors are saying that you will be saved."
These are all foolishnesses. Even the doctors play a part in these stupid things. They don't tell you that your death has come. They avoid the subject; they go on giving you hope. They say, "Don't be worried, you will be saved," knowing perfectly well that the man is going to die. They are giving him a false consolation, not knowing that this is the moment when he should be made fully aware of death - so acutely and so impeccably aware that pure consciousness is experienced. That moment has become a moment of great victory. Now there is no death for him, but only eternal life.
WHEN YOU SAID THAT NOW IS THE TIME TO DROP THE DUALITY BETWEEN ME AND YOU, YOU GAVE ME WHAT I'VE YEARNED FOR FROM THE MOMENT I SAW YOU. I WANT TO WRITE THIS SO THAT IT IS MORE REAL, SO THAT I CAN KNOW MORE AND MORE THAT THIS IS MY TRUTH. BELOVED OSHO, I AM NOT SEPARATE FROM YOU. THERE IS NO YOU - THERE IS NO ME. THIS FEELS SO AWESOME TO SAY - EVEN MORE AWESOME TO LIVE. WHY? HOW TO EVER DROP OVER MY HEAD?
Kaveesha, this is your truth. It will be better to say this is the truth, because the truth cannot be yours or mine. And I have known it from the very beginning, since you first saw me.
It is not a question of time - that one has to live with me for years and only then will he be able to feel that there is no I and there is no thou. It is a question of sensitivity, not of time - of a clear perception, not of living many, many years with me.
There are people who have lived with me for years. In fact, the more they have lived with me, the more they have forgotten me completely; they have started taking me for granted. They will wake up only when I disappear from this physical body. Then they will feel a sudden shock - twenty years we have been together, what happened?
So it can happen in the first moment - it can happen any time. The only requirement is a clear perception. And Kaveesha, you have a very clear perception and a very loving heart. And from the very first moment you have not hesitated at all in opening all your doors, all your windows; you have been available to me.
I remember the first day I looked into your eyes, and I knew that somebody is there who is ready to disappear. If you disappear, you will suddenly realize that I disappeared long ago. So there is no I and there is no thou.
Kaveesha was born in a Jewish family, and she must be aware of one of the great Jewish thinkers of this century, Martin Buber. His most famous book, for which he received the Nobel Prize, is I AND THOU. His whole philosophy is that people need a deep dialogue between I and thou.
He has written very logically and very rationally - he was one of the geniuses of this century - but his whole philosophy is wrong. He thinks the dialogue happens between I and thou. And I say unto you, the dialogue happens only when there is no I and no thou.
It is a very strange dialogue, of course, because we are accustomed only to a dialogue between two persons; and I am saying that when two persons disappear into one, only then there is dialogue, a heart-to-heart communion.
Martin Buber is dead; otherwise I would have traveled to Israel - he was very old - just to tell him, "There is still time for you; drop this idea of I and thou. Let there remain only the dialogue."
With Kaveesha there has been only a dialogue. And it is not that only now she has become aware of it; she has also been aware of it, but she wanted the seal of my authority on it - because one never knows whether one is dreaming or seeing the reality, whether one is imagining, or really the revolution has happened. Her question is just for her to become clear about it, so nothing remains clouded.
Yes, Kaveesha, this is the truth. Neither yours nor mine; just the truth.
You are saying, "Beloved Osho, I am not separate from you. There is no you - there is no me. This feels so awesome to say - even more awesome to live."
It is such a great mystery to live that it is natural it will look very awesome - it is so overwhelming.
But slowly, slowly, everything else becomes unreal and false before this simple reality - that there is no I and there is no thou.
It has happened between me and you, and soon you will see that it is happening between you and everyone else. This is only the beginning. It will be complete only when there is no I and no thou anywhere, when you are merged and melted into the ocean of the whole.
You have entered the door of the temple, and now there is no way of turning back. Just accept it as a gift of the divine in total humbleness and simplicity of the heart; otherwise it can become a heavy burden. The experience is too big, and we are so small.
It is almost as if the ocean has dropped into the dewdrop - just think of the poor dewdrop! When the dewdrop falls into the ocean, it is simpler; but once in a while the ocean also drops into the dewdrop - then it is tremendously awesome and overwhelming. But to whomsoever it happens, he is blessed, immensely blessed.
Just take it with deep relaxation, and with a humble heart, and soon it will become your natural way of life. Looking at the trees, or at the stars, you will find the same dialogue.
I FEEL AS IF I AM ALMOST LETTING GO, BUT A PART INSIDE ME, SMALL BUT VERY PERSISTENT, IS HOLDING ON TIGHT. IT CREATES A FEELING OF ANXIETY, A CLOUD OF WORRY, A SENSE OF INCOMPLETION. OFTEN, WITH YOU, THE BEAUTY OF A SINGLE MOMENT IS SO INTENSE THAT IT TURNS INTO AN ACHE AND A LONGING. IS IT BECAUSE MY "YES" IS NOT TOTAL YET? AND WHY DOES THIS CREATE A SORT OF EXISTENTIAL WORRY?
NOBODY ELSE SEEMS WORRIED.
Deva Surabhi, your question has its own answer in it - but this is how people are unconscious. You have not even thought a second time about what you are writing. You are writing, "I feel as if I am almost letting go." Do you see what it means? The moment let-go happens, it is not almost. Either it happens or it does not happen.
Let-go does not come in installments, and it is never "almost" - that too is "as if." Even the "almost"
is not certain - uncertainty upon uncertainty upon uncertainty. "As if" is also not the beginning. "I feel" - it is not that I experience. Naturally, you will find yourself in tension and in anxiety.
And you ask me, "Is it because my 'yes' is not total yet?" What to say of your "yes" and its totality?
You have not even dreamt about it; you have only heard about it, and you have seen people in a state of yes-ness.
You have also longed for it because you have seen the joy of those whose "yes" is total; you have seen their dance, you have seen their song. It is out of a competitive spirit - you don't want to be left behind. But you don't have any "yes" yet; otherwise, there would be no anxiety and no tension.
"Yes" is a total let-go.
But my feeling about Surabhi is that she is a great thinker. I say great thinker because she is the only one who writes so many questions every day. I have to go on throwing away dozens of her questions, and then I start feeling that the poor girl is writing so many questions that I must choose at least one. So out of compassion I choose, Surabhi, your questions. Otherwise, they are not worth answering.
I would never have answered anybody else's question if he had written, "I feel as if I am almost letting go, but a part inside me, small but very persistent, is holding on tight." Even if a part of you is holding on tight, it is enough to destroy your whole idea of let-go. You cannot divide yourself into parts; even if one hand is holding tight, your whole body will have to remain there.
I have heard about a man who stole from the treasury of the king and was brought before the king.
The man was certainly a very strange fellow because he did not deny it, although there was no eyewitness. He was not caught red-handed; he could have denied it - it was almost impossible for the king to prove that he had stolen from his treasury. But the man said, "Yes, I have stolen from the treasury, and whatever punishment you want to give, you can give. But remember one thing - only my hands have been involved in the stealing - I was just standing there and watching. I am the only eyewitness."
The king said, "You seem to be a very strange fellow. Your hands were stealing, and you were standing there, just looking."
The man said, "That's how I work. You can punish my hands, but you cannot punish me. That would be very unjust of you. And anyway, you don't have any other witness except me."
The king said, "You are not only a thief, but you seem to be very logical, too. Okay, I sentence both your hands to be kept for thirty years in jail."
The whole court laughed. The king said, "Now the poor fellow will be in difficulty because if his hands are in jail, how can he avoid not being in jail?" But the man laughed with the laughing court.
Seeing that he was laughing, the court stopped, because the man took off both of his hands - which were false - threw them before the king and said, "Goodbye. Thirty years, or three hundred years...
as many years as you want to keep them, keep them."
But Surabhi, your parts are not false. If a false hand were holding tight, then things would be easy.
You are an organic whole. An anxiety is being created because you are trying to let go. It is not a question of trying - because trying itself will be the hindrance to moving into the space of let-go.
Let-go cannot be tried. It is simply an outcome of understanding - you simply understand something.
For example, you see that your house is on fire. Then, you don't consult the ENCYCLOPEDIA BRITANNICA for how to get out of the house when the house is on fire; you don't give even a single moment for thinking. You just rush from wherever you can find a space to get out of the house - you may have to jump out of the window.
I have seen a man jumping out of his bathroom, naked, because the house was on fire. And nobody objected to it because you cannot follow etiquette and manners in a situation when the house is on fire. The poor fellow was in the bath under the shower. Do you think he should first put on his dress, make-up, and then go out of the front door? - just like a gentleman, jumping out of the window, in the house of another person, and that too, naked. But nobody took note of it. On the contrary, the neighbors brought a blanket and covered him.
Let-go is an instantaneous understanding: you see the futility of your effort. In that very seeing, let-go happens. It is not something, Surabhi, that you have to do - you are trying to do it. The same is true about love. These belong to the same category: let-go, love, meditation, God - they are not your doings. You are seeing people in a yes state, flowering, blossoming, in spring. You also want to be in that state, but you don't understand that "yes" is not a by-product of effort; "yes" is an outcome of deep understanding.
So while you are here, rather than fighting for "yes," try to understand what I am saying, what I am, what is happening here. Remain open and available, and one day - and one can never say when, it is unpredictable... one day - and there are not many days, there are only seven days, so there is no need to be worried.... Somebody may become enlightened on Monday, and somebody will become enlightened on Sunday - it doesn't matter. There is not much choice, only seven days....
So just relax, enjoy, forget all about achieving something: self-realization, enlightenment, God.
Forget everything - we are not here to achieve anything, we are here just to enjoy these few moments that are available to us. It is another thing if while you are enjoying, suddenly you find God is dancing with you - that is another thing. You were not dancing for God, you were not waiting for Him; your dance was so beautiful, your dance was so total, your dance was so intense that the dancer disappeared.
In that moment you will find God dancing with you. And don't make much fuss about it - "God danced with me" - because if you make much fuss about it, you may not find the same dance again; you will be always, from the corner of your eyes, watching for when God comes. He never comes in this way.
There are millions of monks of all the religions in the world who are trying hard to get God to dance with them, but they never get even a glimpse of Him. And here you will find many people who have known what it means when God dances with you, what it means to say a total "yes" to existence.
It is not on your part an effort; you just drop the achieving mind which has been given to you by the society. It creates in the mind ambitions: ambition for money, ambition for power, ambition for prestige, ambition for God, ambition for heaven - but it is all ambition. In a mind which is ambitious for money and ambitious for prestige, ambition for God, ambition for enlightenment, ambition for nirvana are not different. They are all ambitions, all decorations for the ego. And God cannot be a decoration for your ego; neither can enlightenment be a decoration for your ego.
When you are not, then the whole existence starts showering thousands of flowers upon you from every dimension, from every direction.
THE MIND OFTEN TELLS ME TO BEWARE OF MY GREATEST FEAR: THAT ANY WRONG MOVE COULD RESULT IN A FALL AND LEAD ME AWAY FROM YOUR LOVE. AND YET,
I FEEL NOW AS NEVER BEFORE THAT YOU ARE THE BREATH FLOWING THROUGH ME, THE HEART BEATING WITHIN, THAT YOU ARE ONE WITH ME WHEN I REST BEHIND MY EYES, THAT YOU ARE IN THE OPEN SKY BETWEEN MY BREATHS, THAT YOU LIVE WITHIN EVERY FIBER OF MY BEING - ABSOLUTELY INSEPARABLE AND PRESENT. O BELOVED ONE, I LONG TO FINALLY RELAX AND NEVER WORRY ABOUT BEING SEPARATE FROM YOU. WHY DO I STILL BELIEVE MY MIND AND WORRY SO MUCH? OR IS IT POSSIBLE THAT WHAT I AM EXPERIENCING IS JUST AN ILLUSION? WITH TEARS OF GRATITUDE, SO MUCH MORE THAN I CAN CONTAIN, I KISS THIS EARTH THAT GIVES YOU TO US.
Maitri, mind is fear. Mind is a coward and is always concerned about security, safety, certainty. The world of love and the world of meditation is pure insecurity; it is moving into the unknown with no maps in your hand, with no guidebook to lead you, not knowing where you are going, not knowing where you are going to land finally.
Mind naturally always is worried, creating questions about where you are going, what you are seeking. Remain within the mundane world where things are objective and where superhighways exist which have milestones, which have maps, which have guidebooks, and you know exactly where you are going, and you know exactly where you will reach. But the world of love, the world of godliness, is just like the open sky. The birds fly, but they don't leave their footprints for other birds to follow. They don't make highways, superhighways, so that the coming generations don't go astray.
The human mind is always worried about going astray. So you have to learn one thing: that it is the nature of the mind to be worried. Just as you have five fingers... once you have accepted that you have five fingers, finished; you don't have to think every day, "... only five fingers?"
One of my teachers in the university had six fingers, and he was always hiding his sixth finger. It was very easy to expose him; I would just give a paper, a question, and he would have to take the question with the hand with the sixth finger, and the whole class would laugh. And on the note I had written, "This is just to expose your sixth finger."
When I did it the first time, he called me into his room and asked me, "What kind of thing is this?"
I said, "What kind of thing were you doing? You started."
He said, "What do you mean, I started?"
I said, "You were hiding your sixth finger. And I simply wanted everybody to know that we have got a great teacher who has six fingers. Just you know that you have six fingers; let everybody know and be finished with it. Then there is no need every morning to worry about having six fingers. What is wrong in it? People are just missing one finger, that's all."
He said, "That's true. Why should I be afraid?"
I said, "But you go on always keeping your hands in your pockets." Even in public lectures he would keep his hands in his pockets - but I would approach with a paper. And he knew that there was nothing on the paper, but before the meeting he could not refuse it, he had to take it; he had to take his hands out. And both hands had six fingers. On the paper I used to write, "Just to expose your six fingers."
I said, "Once and for all, just show your six fingers to everybody, and ask everybody, 'Has anybody any objection?' And be finished with it. Why be worried?"
Maitri, mind will always create. I say always; in whatever state you are, it will always create - whether it is imagination or truth, whether it is a dream or reality, whether I am hallucinating or experiencing something existential.
Once and for all, tell the mind, "It is none of your business. If it is hallucination and I am enjoying it, nothing is wrong in it." The criterion should be the enjoyment, the ecstasy, the dance - if it is filling my heart with joy, then who cares whether it is true or untrue.
Otherwise, even if you become enlightened, your mind is going to ask, "First enquire whether your enlightenment is true, or just an exaggerated imagination." If it is imagination, then too it is a very good imagination; if it is a dream, it is a very sweet dream. It is better than having nightmares!
The mind has to be continuously put into its place - "You are not to be taken seriously at all. I am going to enjoy imagination, I am going to enjoy hallucination, I am going to enjoy illusion, I am going to enjoy dreaming - I am going to enjoy. You just keep silent, don't disturb."
The real thing is your being blissful, not the object, whether it is real or not. Your blissfulness is the criterion of its reality. But the mind is very clever and very cunning. Even if in this very moment it cannot distract you, it can start thinking and giving you ideas that you may go astray in the future; you may lose the path.
If you are here right now, then your next moment is going to be born out of this moment. It will be even more real. The future does not come from above, from nowhere; it grows within you. And if your present moment is full of love and full of juice and full of joy, out of this present moment will be growing your future; out of this life will be growing another life; out of this experience is going to grow your experience of the eternal.
But mind takes a little time, because you have listened to its fears and anxieties always. It goes on poking its nose into everything.
You have to be alert not to allow the mind to disturb your peace in the present, and the future will take care of itself. Because the future will always come as the present - and you know how to take care of the present - you know how to take care of all eternity because time cannot come to you in any other form than the present.
So let your blissfulness be the only criterion. If something is making you blissful, it is bound to be real - because from the unreal you cannot get blissfulness. And if your blissfulness goes on growing, then you are on the right path.
Whenever you feel that your blissfulness is diminishing, then you are losing the right path. Then move back to the path where you were feeling more blissful - just a simple criterion, but it is enough for your whole journey, the whole pilgrimage.
Slowly, slowly, mind stops interfering, saying, "This Maitri has gone crazy; she does not listen to my sane advice." Nobody has attained to truth through the advice of the mind. Those who have attained to truth have attained by going against the mind, going beyond the mind, putting the mind aside.
One thing is certain, that mind is not going to deliver you anything that is of value. So just stop listening to it. It is a constant harassment. It does not allow you to sit silently even for a few moments. It will start asking you, "What are you doing? In this much time you could have earned so much money; you could have gone and seen your girlfriend or boyfriend - what are you doing here?
At least you could have read the morning newspaper... wasting your beautiful morning."
Just go on pushing the mind aside - "You go on, meet the girlfriend, read the newspaper, but leave me alone." It is a parasite on you. But if you constantly go on throwing it away, slowly, slowly it will start not bothering you, saying, "This Maitri has gone beyond the boundary of sanity."
The moment the mind stops bothering you, you, for the first time, are healthy, sane. For the first time you are really born; you are free from the imprisonment of thoughts and fears. For the first time you have attained to the most delicious phenomenon in existence - freedom.
This place is not for the mind; this place is for those who can leave their mind outside the gate.
Come inside, dancing and joyous. And when you go back, you can pick up your mind or anybody's mind - that will do, because they are all insane, and once in a while to change them is always good; you will have some new gossips to hear.
But here you have to be absolutely without mind. This is the only gift I can give to you: to help you to be without the mind. And then all the treasures of existence are yours.