The river needs no guide
IN DISCOURSE I FOLLOWED PAST WORDS, DISREGARDING FEELINGS, INTO AIR AND THE PATTERN OF MY BEING. IS IT REALLY THIS SIMPLE? NOW MOVING INTO MYSTERIOUS DEPTHS, NO UNIVERSAL VISIONS - JUST ME, HERE AMONGST THE BIRDS, THE TREES, THE PEOPLE - IN ALL ITS SUCHNESS. NO SEARCHING, NO LONGING, JUST LIVING ME... I KNOW THIS TO BE TRUE, BUT I ALSO NEED YOUR ANSWER. IN THIS CONTEXT, THEN WHAT IS ENLIGHTENMENT?
Dhyan Sarvam, the question that you have asked is not a question, but an expression of what you are feeling. What you are feeling is, "no universal visions - just me, here amongst the birds, the trees, the people - in all its suchness. No searching, no longing, just living me... I know this to be true, but I also need Your answer." Then your knowing is not complete. Your knowing has hidden behind it a doubt; otherwise there is no need of any answer. If you know, then what is the need of my answer?
But I can understand your problem - on the one hand you know the beauty of this moment, the blissfulness of here-now, and yet there is a suspicion underground raising the question, "Is it really true? Is it all? Or is there something more?" And this doubt is arising because of a simple thing. If you had looked at your question a little more deeply, you would have found, "No universal visions - just me." This "me" is the source of your doubt. If you had said, "No universal visions, no me, here amongst the birds, the trees, the people - in all its suchness. No searching, no longing, just living me...." That "me" is the block. In suchness there is no "me," only a pure isness - no "I," no "thou." And when there is no searching, no longing, the ego cannot exist even for a split second. The searching, the longing, the desiring - these are the very heartbeats of the ego.
You say, "I know this to be true." You do not know, your mind is deceiving you, because you are still there - in knowing you cannot be. Knowing drowns the "I" and then there is a certainty, "This is true."
But wherever you find the "I" lingering in some way, beware of it. Its deception is going too far.
You are asking, "In this context, what is enlightenment?" In this context there is no enlightenment.
But if the "I" and the "me" have also dissolved in the suchness of things, in the isness of existence, then this would have been the enlightenment. Just a little more awareness... you are very close to it. But don't take it for granted that you have arrived. The old mind tries to the very end; when you are entering the boundaries of enlightenment, then too, it goes on trying with all its power to hold you back.
The experience is beautiful, but your ego is making it not reach to its ultimate climax. You drop the "me," you drop the "I", and there will be no need to answer there will be no need for recognition - you will know. But you will not be there, only the knowing will be there, that, "This is it."
Everybody has to remember about the old mind. It is such a long habit; for many, many lives you have remained attached to it. So it is not surprising that when you are departing from it, it clings to you - perhaps just the last hug, but the hug can go on being prolonged.
I have heard.... An old Jew is run over in front of a church. A priest runs out and whispers in his ear, "Do you believe in the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost?" The Jew opens his eyes and says, "I am dying and he is asking me riddles!"
Although he is dying he has a Jewish conditioning and the priest is asking from the background of a Christian mind.
You were very close. You just missed by inches, not even miles. When you again feel this - and you will feel this.... It is a great achievement to feel the pure space of no searching, no longing, no universal visions, to feel only the birds singing in the trees, the people all around. But you are missing; you are no more there. Just gather courage not to be, and this very experience becomes enlightenment.
Enlightenment is not something superhuman, it is your basic right. But your ego goes on postponing it, goes on bringing itself between you and your enlightenment. And in such subtle ways that unless you are very alert, you are going to be deceived. When you felt no searching, no longing, you could have felt just life, just living. Why just "living me"? Why confine living to a small prison of "me"?
Feel the heartbeat of the whole universe and let your own separation be dissolved into it. Then you would have said, "The knowing has happened; this is it and there is no other enlightenment." The absence of the ego and the presence of universal consciousness is what enlightenment means.
I AM A STUDENT FROM JAPAN. "WHERE THERE IS A WILL, THERE IS A WAY." PLEASE TELL ME ABOUT IT, OSHO.
Yasuhiro Janiguchi, the proverb, "Where there is a will, there is a way" exists in almost every language, in every civilization. But nobody has looked into the psychology of it. The will creates its own way, because the will takes you away from yourself. If you ask me, I would rather like to change this proverb to, "No will, no way, and you are at home." Why go unnecessarily traveling around the world? - because no way leads anywhere, no will leads anywhere except into frustration, misery, failure, even if you succeed.
There is another proverb which says, "Nothing succeeds like success." But my own experience is, "Nothing fails like success." But we are such hypocrites, pretenders. That when you succeed you know you have not gained anything; on the contrary, this stupid idea of success has taken away all your life, and all its songs, and all its poetry, and all its dances. You sacrifice yourself before the false goddess of success, and now what have you got?
But it needs courage to declare to the world, "You think I have succeeded? That is an outward interpretation of my state. My inner experience is, 'Nothing fails like success.' But all of our societies have been teaching you to succeed, to have a strong willpower, because, "Wherever there is will, there is a way." You will find the way, but those ways lead nowhere; they are dead-end streets. And meanwhile, your life is slipping from your hands.
But willpower has been supported by thousands of thinkers and philosophers without ever going into the inner reality of it. To will means you are not satisfied with yourself. It means you are not fulfilled, something more is needed, that you are not at ease. You have to go somewhere, you have to become someone. The very existence of will is against your being - it degrades your being into becoming. Then there is search and then there is longing, and naturally you will find a way, just to go away from yourself.
But this is not the right thing to do - this is suicidal; you are committing suicide. The farther you go on that way of the will, the more you will find yourself lost. This has happened to almost the whole of humanity - they have forgotten who they are. They have gone so far away from themselves that they have forgotten their home.
Drop the will, and immediately that way disappears like a dream. It has no reality of its own. The will gives its power to the way, it creates the way.
So the proverb is right, but those who follow it are wrong. One need not have any will, and one need not have any way. Then sit inside your home and play a bamboo flute. There is no need to go anywhere because you are already there, where you would really like to be.
TEARS GENTLY FALLING IN RIVERS DOWN MY FACE... JUST SO TIRED OF TRYING, STRUGGLING, FIGHTING TO BE WHAT I THINK I SHOULD BE IN ORDER TO GET WHAT I THINK I NEED. BELOVED, EVEN WITH YOU I TRIED SO HARD. IN THIS GIVING UP... THE GAP, THE BEAUTY, THE UNKNOWN... FEARS MEET TRUST. OSHO, COULD IT BE THAT THIS RIVER IS FLOWING TOWARDS LIFE, TOWARDS YOU, TOWARDS THE OCEAN? THANK YOU, MY MASTER.
Do you see? "Tears gently falling in rivers down my face... just so tired of trying, struggling, fighting to be what I think I should be in order to get what I think I need. Beloved, even with You I tried so hard." This is the way of the will. It simply goes on destroying you.
In the old days there used to be a proverb, "All roads lead to Rome." But in fact, all roads lead to death. And perhaps Rome is the graveyard of the whole world.
Just the other day I heard that one of the archbishops is hiding in the Vatican, because the Vatican is an independent country - just eight square miles - and the Italian police are after him because he has been deceiving the Vatican and the Italian government. He is the treasurer of the pope, and the pope is protecting him. The Italian police cannot enter into the Vatican.
These are your religious leaders! That man has stolen millions of dollars - and he is an archbishop, and a treasurer to the pope! If the pope had any guts, he would have handed him over to the police.
But he is hiding him in the Vatican, because the police cannot enter there.
You are feeling tired, full of tears. You have been struggling hard to be what you think you should be in order to get what you think you need. These are the ways of the will: you have to become this, you have to become that, you have to get this, you have to get that. But you are fortunate, greatly blessed that you became tired and you gave up trying; you gave up the will to succeed; you dropped the hardship you were imposing upon yourself.
"In this giving up... the gap," - no will, no way, no you, just the gap. And, "the beauty, the unknown...
fears meet trust. Osho, could it be that this river is flowing towards life, towards you, towards the ocean?" Deva Leena, there is no question, because every river is moving towards the ocean. It is only the man who gets frozen, and then the flow stops.... If you melt in trust, the river starts flowing again. And it has never been the case that any river has forgotten the path and has not reached the ocean.
But remember the gap. And remember Chuang Tzu's statement, "Easy is right and right is easy."
And when you forget both, what is right and what is easy, you have arrived at the ocean.
The ocean is not far away, Leena. But your ego is a frozen block - it needs melting. Love melts it, fear makes it more frozen, trust melts it. All that the people who are trying to find themselves have to do, is remain melted and allow the river to move on its own. You should not be the guide; the river needs no guide. Its very nature is to reach to the ocean. It is not an effort, it is its intrinsic quality.
After making the flight information, the Israeli pilot on the El Al jet forgot to turn the intercom off, and his next words were heard throughout the cabin, "I will have a cup of coffee and then I will screw that gorgeous new stewardess, Lee."
Lee was down at the end of the passenger cabin and ran forward to tell the pilot to turn the intercom off. Halfway down, an old man tripped her up.
"Can't you wait, Lee? Let him have his coffee first!"
Leena, be at ease, have your coffee. And there is no need to run towards the ocean. Just slowly enjoy the trees, and the birds, and the people, having a trust in your heart that every river has always reached the ocean. And you cannot be the exception; existence does not allow any exceptions. You will also reach the ocean.
THANK YOU FOR THROWING MOST OF MY QUESTIONS IN YOUR GARBAGE BIN. AT FIRST IT HURTS THE EGO, BUT NOT REALLY THAT MUCH. YOU ARE SHOWING ME HOW MY QUESTIONS ARE UNNECESSARY. EITHER I'M TRYING TO BE SMART, TRYING TO WRITE AN UNUSUAL QUESTION, OR TRYING TO BE FUNNY, HOPING TO MAKE EVERYBODY LAUGH.
BUT I REALIZE I'M ALWAYS TRYING TO PROVE SOMETHING, WHICH IS NONSENSE. MY BELOVED MASTER, IT OCCURRED TO ME THAT MAYBE YOU WANT ME TO STOP ASKING QUESTIONS AND SIMPLY SHUT UP. HAS THE TIME REALLY COME? SOMETIMES I HAVE WONDERED IF THAT TIME HAD NOT COME ALREADY A LONG TIME AGO.
Chidananda, it is true, I have been throwing your questions away because they were not authentic; they were not coming from your necessity of inner growth. And you have received the answer.
Unless I had thrown them, you would not have understood what you recognize in this question.
Although you have not yet understood the whole point, a glimpse has happened.
You say, "Thank You for throwing most of my questions in Your garbage bin. At first it hurts the ego, but not really that much." That means you will be still asking those questions. And the fear is that you may become slowly, slowly immune, because it hurts only just a little. By and by it will not hurt at all.
You say,"You are showing me how my questions are unnecessary. Either I'm trying to be smart, trying to write an unusual question, or trying to be funny, hoping to make everybody laugh. But I realize I am always trying to prove something, which is nonsense. "Just remember what you are writing in this, because man's memory is very superficial. Tomorrow you may forget again and fall into your old habits.
You don't know that almost one hundred questions come every day, and I have to throw away almost ninety-five. Not that I don't have time - if I feel that they are sincere and you need it urgently, I will find the time - but they are so obviously unnecessary. But throwing them away was also my answer to you.
George Bernard Shaw used to reply only once a month to his letters. For one month he would go on piling up all those letters - and he was receiving thousands of letters from all over the world.
His friends were worried, "What kind of method have you found? You go on piling up the letters; you don't even read them." He said, "I have decided, on every first day of the month, I read them. Most of them already have answers. The few that still remain relevant, I answer - and they are very few."
Not answering a question is also an answer. And it is good that some insight happened to you, Chidananda. Now remain aware of it, because I have to unnecessarily read your questions. I may not answer, but I cannot be so uncompassionate as George Bernard Shaw.
You say, "It occurred to me that maybe you want me to stop asking questions and simply shut up.
"No, I want you to ask authentic questions. I want you to ask something that is going to help you in your growth. You are forgetting yourself completely in your questions. They are meant for others - they should be funny, they should make people laugh. How are you going to be helped by this?
I don't want you to shut up. The time has not come for it yet. And when the time comes, I will not need to tell you to shut up. You suddenly will find there are no questions to be asked; you have received the answer; you have found the answer.
But the mind is so cunning, Chidananda, that you are saying, "Has the time really come? Sometimes I have wondered if that time had not come already a long time ago."
You have not even begun the journey. You are concerned with unessential things. The time has certainly come for you to be sincere and authentic and ask those questions which will expose your wounds and heal them.
A KGB agent sees a Jew reading a Hebrew grammar book on a bench in Moscow's Gorky Park.
"Hey, Jew," he shouts, "Why are you reading that? You know we will never let you go to Israel."
"Well," said the Jew, "I am reading it in case they speak Hebrew in heaven."
"And what if you go to hell?," said the KGB man. "Oh," sighed the Jew, "I should be okay. I already speak Russian."
You need not worry, Chidananda, that people should laugh. When I feel it necessary, I find a way for them to laugh. These laughters are not meaningless. I don't want to make your head too burdened with heavy, serious, existential problems, so I go on telling jokes here and there. A good laughter clears the clouds, and then you are ready again to hear something serious.
One thing you can do, Chidananda - and I have been using your jokes - if you cannot find any authentic question, you can go on writing your jokes. Anybody who feels like writing something and does not have any question to ask, he can write a joke. Because from where am I going to find the jokes?
IN MY MIND THERE IS A VERY SUBTLE CONDITIONING, AND THAT IS: GIVING AND RECEIVING ALWAYS HAVE TO BE BALANCED. YOU SAY THAT ACTION AND REWARD ARE TWO SIDES OF THE SAME COIN, BUT STILL SOMETIMES I FEEL THAT TO RECEIVE SO MUCH FROM YOU IS NOT RIGHT. THANK YOU!
Deva Sukhkanda, are you a Jew? Or perhaps you may have been a Jew in some of your past lives?
From where did you get this conditioning?
You are saying, "In my mind there is a very subtle conditioning, and that is: giving and receiving always have to be balanced. You say that action and reward are two sides of the same coin, but still sometimes I feel that to receive so much from you is not right." But you don't know that I am receiving more from you than you are receiving from me.
You are my life, otherwise I have no reason at all to exist another day. You are my dreams, You are my hope. It is through you I go on believing that perhaps humanity can be saved.
What you are receiving is very small. What I am receiving from you is my very life, my very heartbeats, my breathing - because the day I feel that it is a hopeless task, I will simply cover myself in my blanket and disappear.
It is your joy, your laughter, your silence, your effort to be aware that goes on giving me hope.
In the whole world nobody is concerned about the calamity humanity is going to face. I can see it approaching every day closer and closer. And I want you to be ready to fight against it, to revolt against all those forces which are rotten, old, ugly, animalistic - but they are in power. And such destructive power... then these poor birds will not be able to sing anymore, these trees will not be able to have a sunbath every morning, a dance in the wind, in the rain. They are not concerned that the moon will still go on rising but there will be no poet to sing about it. There will be sunrises and sunsets, but no painter to paint it.
This is the only planet where we are absolutely certain that life has come to the highest peak.
Scientists guess that at least fifty thousand other planets also must have life of some kind - but that is guesswork, and you cannot depend on it. This is the only reality that we know and that we are certain about.
So you need not be worried. In fact I should be worried that I am taking too much and giving too little. But my problem is that I cannot worry, and your problem is that you cannot stop worrying; you will find something or other to worry about.
Goldberg meets Ginsberg at the station. "Tell me, Ginsberg, we meet here every day and often at the synagogue and the golf club, and you never ask me, 'How is business?'"
"Okay," replies Ginsberg, "tell me Goldberg, how is business?"
"Ah," replied Goldberg, "don't ask."