The same vicious circle

Fri, 9 March 1987 00:00:00 GMT
Book Title:
The Razor's Edge
Chapter #:
pm in Chuang Tzu Auditorium
Archive Code:
Short Title:
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Question 1:




Prem Mandira, mind is one of the most significant thing in life, but only as a servant, not as a master.

The moment the mind becomes your master, then the problems arise; then it displaces your heart, displaces your being, takes over the whole posession of you. Then rather than following your orders, it starts ordering you.

I am not saying to destroy the mind. It is the most evolved phenomenon in existence. I am saying beware that the servant does not become the master. Remember your being comes first, your heart comes second, your mind comes third - that is the balanced personality of an authentic human being.

Mind is logic... immensely useful, and in the marketplace you cannot exist without the mind. And I have never said that you should not use your mind in the marketplace - you should use it. But you should use it, you should not be used by it. And the difference is great....

It is mind which has given you all technology, all science, but because the mind has given so much, it has claimed to be the master of your being. That's where the mischief begins; it has completely closed the doors of your heart.

Heart is not useful, it has no purpose to fulfill. It is just like a roseflower. The mind can give you bread, but the mind cannot give you joy. It cannot make you rejoice in life. It is very serious, it cannot even tolerate laughter. And a life without laughter has fallen below human standards. It has become subhuman because it is only man, in the whole existence, who is capable of laughing.

Laughter indicates consciousness and its highest growth. Animals cannot laugh, trees cannot laugh, and the people who remain encaged in the mind - the saints, the scientists, the so-called great leaders - they cannot laugh either. They are all too serious, and seriousness is a disease. It is the cancer of your soul; it is destructive.

And because we are in the hands of the mind, all its creativity has gone in the service of destruction; people are dying from starvation, and the mind is trying to pile up more nuclear weapons. People are hungry, and the mind is trying to reach to the moon.

Mind is absolutely without any compassion. For compassion, for love, for joy, for laughter... a heart, freed from the imprisonment of mind, is needed.

Heart has a higher value. It is not of any use in the marketplace, because the marketplace is not your temple; the marketplace is not your life's meaning. The marketplace is the lowest of all the activities of human beings.

Jesus is right when he says, "Man cannot live by bread alone." But mind can only provide bread.

You can survive, but survival is not life. Life needs something more - a dance, a song, a joy.

Hence I want you to put everything in its right place: The heart should be listened to first if there is any kind of conflict between mind and heart. In any conflict between love and logic, then logic cannot be decisive, love has to be decisive. Logic cannot give you any juice - it is dry. It is good for calculations; it is good for mathematics and good for scientific technology. But it is not good for human relationships, not good for the growth of your inner potential.

Above your heart is your being. Just as mind is logic and the heart is love, being is meditation. Being is to know yourself. And by knowing yourself, to know the very meaning of existence.

Knowing the being, is bringing a light into the darkness of your inner world; and unless you are enlightened inside, all the light outside is of no use. Within you, there is just darkness, abysmal darkness, unconsciousness, and all your actions are going to arise out of that darkness, out of that blindness.

So when I say anything against mind, don't misunderstand me. I am not against mind, and I don't want you to destroy it.

I want you to become an orchestra. The same musical instruments can create a hell of a noise if you don't know how to create a symphony, how to create a synthesis, how to put things in their right place.

Being should be your ultimate... there is nothing beyond it - it is part of God within you. It will give you that which neither mind can give, nor the heart can give: It will give you silence. It will give you peace. It will give you serenity. It will give you blissfulness, and finally, a sense of being immortal.

Knowing being, death becomes a fiction and life takes wings into eternity. A man who is unaware of his own being cannot be said to be really alive. He may be a useful mechanism, a robot....

Through meditation, search your being, your isness, your existence. Through love, through your heart, share your blissfulness - that's what love is all about: Sharing your blissfulness, sharing your joy, sharing your dance, sharing your ecstasy.

Mind has its own function in the marketplace , but when you come home, your mind should not continue chattering. Just as you take off your business coat, your hat, your shoes, you should say to the mind, "Now be quiet, this is not your world." This is not being against the mind. In fact, this is giving rest to the mind.

In the home, with your wife, with your husband, with your children, with your parents, with your friends, there is no need for the mind. The need is for an overflowing heart. Unless there is love overflowing in a house, it never becomes a home; it remains a house. And if in the home you can find a few moments for meditation, for experiencing your own being, it raises the home to the highest peak of being a temple.

The same house... for the mind is only a house; for the heart it becomes a home; for the being it becomes a temple. The house remains the same; you go through the changes - your vision changes, your dimension changes, your way of understanding and looking at things changes. And a house that is not all three, is incomplete, is poor.

A man that is not all three, in deep harmony - the mind serving the heart, the heart serving the being, and the being belonging to the intelligence spread all over existence.... People have called it God; I love to call it godliness. There is nothing above it.

I will read your question, Mandira. Do you remember the meaning of your name that I have given to you: Prem Mandira, "Love Temple". In your question there are many misunderstandings.

You are saying, "Osho, You always talk against the mind." I have to talk against the mind, because of you, because you are clinging so much to the mind. You drop clinging and I will never even mention the word.

I am tired of talking against it. It has not done any harm to me, it is not my enemy; it has served me perfectly. It is because of you that I have to go on and on, until one day you decide, "Let us try to put the mind aside." And you say to it, "Shut up for the moment." Unless you all get out of the cage of the mind, I will have to talk against it; although I am not against it.

"You are saying that we should drop it, tell it to shut up." I say drop it if you want to meditate. And the moment you are going to the marketplace, pick it up. Who is preventing you? Is there a need that you should continually cling to it for twenty-four hours? - because tomorrow you are going to the marketplace, so in the night you also have to keep it with you, under your blanket? Are you afraid that it will escape?

I say drop it because I want you to feel that you are the master. If you want to drop it you can drop it, and if you want to pick it up, you can pick it up. It is just a mechanism.

"You are saying that it is not needed in the search for truth." It is not needed. As far as the search for truth is concerned, it is not needed. On the contrary, it is a hindrance.

And truth is not available in the marketplace; it is not something you can purchase, not something that you can steal, not something that you can borrow - it is something within you. But it is beyond the reach of the mind. The reach of the mind is only to outside things. As far as your inner world is concerned, mind is absolutely impotent. It is not its fault; it is not made for that purpose.

As far as truth is concerned, you need a state of no-mind - I mean no thought, not even a ripple in your consciousness, no disturbance - just absolute silence.

One discovers one's truth only in silence, in aloneness. Even your mind will not be a witness to it .

And Mandira, you are absolutely wrong in saying, "You seem to regret that none of your sannyasins is a Nobel prize winner." Where you got the idea from, I don't know.

I have certainly said that the vegetarians have not been able to get a single Nobel prize. And the reason is that intelligence needs certain chemicals, certain proteins, which are not available in their vegetarian food. But I am not regretting it, I am simply stating a fact.

A Nobel prize does not necessarily prove that somebody has achieved the highest consciousness.

J. Krishnamurti did not receive it; Raman Maharishi did not receive it. Meher Baba did not get it. And these were people who reached to the highest peak; they belong to the same category as Gautam Buddha.

Even if Gautam Buddha was alive, he would not receive the Nobel prize because the Nobel prize is a political game. It is not decided by the height of your intelligence; you need some political reasons.

Even politicians like Kissinger have received the Nobel prize, yet J. Krishnamurti's name was never even mentioned.

One of my sannyasins works on the Nobel prize committee. He is a member who chooses who is going to be the Nobel prize winner for certain subjects; He is the expert for economics on the committee. And because he is my sannyasin, he just mentioned my name to the president of the Nobel prize committee, and wanted to introduce my books to the members.

The president said, "This should be the first and the last time that I hear this name! And if you want to keep your post, you should never mention this man's name again. He is dangerous."

He informed me, saying, "I was shocked. They were not even ready to read books. They were not even ready to consider...."

"It is not a question of giving, I was not insisting," he said, "that my master should be given the Nobel prize. Seeing that the committee is giving the Nobel prize to politicians, to people who do not deserve it, I simply mentioned your name. And I was threatened that, I would be thrown out of the committee and would lose a good job. They said if I went on working silently, perhaps I might get the Nobel prize for being a great economist, but I was never to mention the name of my master."

I don't have any political support. On the contrary, I have all the political antagonism from all over the world. Every politician, and it does not matter to what country he belongs, is going to oppose me.

Just today I was seeing a press cutting about an address of Rajiv Gandhi, the prime minister of India, saying that there should be an open discussion all over the country about one very significant subject. The subject suggested by him is: "Religion should not interfere with politics".

I said, " This is perfectly good, but if it is an open discussion, then the other side should also be allowed: 'Politics should not interfere with religion,' and there should be an absolute freedom of expression."

They have created laws so there are a few things you cannot even say. The moment you say them, you will be thrown into jail without any trial. Then how you can conceive of an open discussion? And do you think politics is a higher value than religion? The higher should not interfere with the higher; the higher should interfere with the lower.

I am ready for an open discussion with Rajiv Gandhi anywhere; it would be perfectly good in his parliament. What does he know about religion? And what does he know about politics? And just giving an address saying that all over the country there should be an open discussion - how is it going to happen? Who is going to arrange it? Let it begin from the parliament - I am ready. If Rajiv Gandhi has guts, then I am in favor - religion should interfere with politics! And by religion, I don't mean Hinduism or Buddhism or Christianity; by religion I mean religious values - truth, sincerity, honesty, compassion.

If these values cannot interfere with the politicians, then politics will go from bad to worse - it is already in the gutters. If anybody can pull it out of the gutters and give it a good shower, it cannot be anything other than religious values.

I stand for religiousness. I don't belong to any organized religion, and I will not say that organized religion should interfere with politics because organized religion itself is politics.

Religiousness is always individual. And whenever there is a religious person, he should be heard by all the politicians because although they may have been able to get votes from the ignorant masses, that does not make them wise.

Even if the whole world votes for you, you cannot become a Gautam Buddha; getting votes does not transform your consciousness. A Gautam Buddha should be heard....

When I was seeing the address of Rajiv Gandhi, I remembered a story about Gautam Buddha.

Buddha was entering into the Kingdom of Vaishali and the prime minister told the king,"It will be absolutely appropriate that you should receive Gautam Buddha when he enters the boundaries of our empire."

The king was a young man, arrogant... He said, "What do you mean? He is just a beggar and I am an emperor? If he wants to see me, he can make an appointment. But why I should go to receive him... who is he?"

The prime minister was very old. He had been the prime minister for the king's father. The father had died and he had brought up the child and crowned him as a king.

Listening to his arrogant and egoistic attitude he said, "Now you are mature enough and you can make decisions on your own. Please retire me, accept my resignation; I cannot work under you anymore. I have fulfilled my duty to your father. I had promised that until you become king I would not leave my post. That promise is fulfilled."

But the king became worried because the prime minister was really a very wise man, and to find a substitute would not be easy - and he has loved him almost like a father. So he said, "Just because I am not going to receive that beggar...."

The prime minister said, "Don't insult me any more." He said, "I am not insulting you."

The prime minister said, "You are insulting me, my age, and you are insulting the whole Eastern concept of what is higher and what is lower. The man you are calling a beggar was once a prince of a many-times-bigger empire than you are the king of. He was also going to be the king. He was the only son of his father and he renounced the empire; he is no ordinary beggar. He is far higher than you.

"If you want me to remain as prime minister to you, you will have to come with me to receive Gautam Buddha. Not only that, remember when I touch his feet, you will have to touch his feet too. Because it is not a question of how rich you are. It is a question of how conscious you are. And this man happens only once in thousands of years, this Everest-like consciousness. You are the beggar.

What have you got? Death will take it away. What he has is beyond the reach of death. Now his empire is not of this world, but of eternity; he will be the king forever. You are king only for a day, or today. Don't be lost in this momentary, phenomenal, illusory greatness. Your greatness is made of the same stuff as dreams are made of. Come with me."

When I saw the address of Rajiv Gandhi, I remembered the story of Gautam Buddha, and the king of Vaishali.

I do not regret that none of my sannyasins is a politician. I am immensely happy that my sannyasins are not politicians. And the Nobel prize has not been given, at least up to now, even to a single meditator. Meditation does not come into their consideration.

A novelist can get a Nobel prize. A film director can get a Nobel prize. A scientist can get a Nobel prize. A politician can get a Nobel prize. But there is no category in the Nobel prize for a man like Jesus, or Gautam Buddha, or Zarathustra, or Lao Tzu.

And even if these people are given Nobel prizes, they will laugh. To them your Nobel prizes are just like toys; they are good for children to play with. In what way can they enhance Gautam Buddha?

This is how people go on hearing things which are not sane... I have never regretted....

And you are saying, "I feel almost guilty when I make an attempt to become informed about one thing or another...." You are misunderstanding me completely. Who has told you, "Don't become informed"? I have been telling you that by informing yourself you cannot attain to self-realization.

But if you want to be an electrician, I will not suggest: Meditate, and you will become an electrician; meditate, and you will become a mechanic in a factory - you will need information.

There is no need to feel guilty. This is how your mind goes on making distortions, interpretations, and you go on carrying in your mind things which I have never said.

You are saying, "... it seems almost impossible to survive in the marketplace totally ignorant." But who has said to you that in the marketplace, be totally ignorant? Be as knowledgeable as possible.

In the marketplace innocence is not needed, neither is silence needed, nor is self-realization needed.

The more you are knowledgeable, the more you will be successful.

I have been talking, not about the marketplace, I have been talking about the realization of who you are. This is not possible through gathering information; this is not possible through becoming knowledgeable - this is possible only if you become innocent.

And remember, innocence is not ignorance. There is a very fine demarcation, but the difference is immense. Ignorance means absence of knowledge, and innocence means presence of silence, presence of clarity. Ignorance is a negative thing. Innocence is a positive phenomenon. They don't mean the same thing.

You can be innocent as far as your inner growth is concerned, and you can be knowledgeable as far as your outside world is concerned. They are two different things; they don't clash with each other.

I have heard... two cowboys come upon an Indian lying on his stomach with his ear to the ground.

One of the cowboys stops and says to the other, "You see that Indian?" "Yah," says the other cowboy.

"Look," says the first one, "he is listening to the ground. He can hear things for miles in any direction."

Just then the Indian looks up, "Covered wagon," he says, "about two miles away. Has two horses - one brown, one white - a man, a woman, a child, and household effects in the wagon."

"Incredible!" says the cowboy to his friend. "This Indian knows how far away they are, how many horses, what color they are, who is in the wagon, and what is in the wagon. Amazing!" The Indian looks up and says, "Ran over me about a half hour ago."

Prem Mandira, when you are listening to me, be alert that your mind does not start interpreting it.

Just listen exactly to what I am saying; otherwise you can go on listening to me for years and still remain in the same vicious circle, moving round and round but going nowhere.

I really mean business. I want you to be the new man. The whole of humanity needs the new man; it is not only your need. It used to be the need of the individual in the past, but now we have come to a point where the new man is needed for the survival of the whole of humanity, for the survival of life itself on the earth.

Question 2:



Mathilda Argyll, Friedrich Nietzsche is a great thinker. I am not. When he says that man was intrinsically, neither good nor bad, he is right. Man is born a tabula rasa, just a clean sheet of paper, nothing written on it. But he brings seeds, and if he is allowed freedom and support, he will become a unique individual.

Nobody can predict what is going to be his destiny, but one thing is certain: if he is not interfered within his growth, whatever he becomes, he will be immensely contented. He may become a musician, just a bamboo flute player, but he will have a richness in his being which even the richest people cannot have, a fulfillment. His seed has not been destroyed. He has come to become his own self, not somebody else's carbon copy.

He may not be a lotus flower; he may be just a marigold, or even a grass flower without any name, anonymous, a nobody, but still he will dance in the rain, and in the wind, and in the sun, with the same joy as any roseflower.

But this has been one of the most difficult problems: people grab every child as he is born and start making something out of him. Nobody cares to allow his nature to have its own say, to sing its own song. With all good intentions, the parents, the priests, the teachers, the whole society is trying to make somebody according to their own conceptions.

And this is the sole cause of humanity's misery, because nobody is what he would have been if left in freedom - supported, accepted, nourished. But everybody has been distorted. And the problem becomes more complex because the people who are distorting children are distorting them for their own good.

Every child comes with tremendous energy and potential, but the whole of society around the child starts moulding him, giving him ideals: you have to be a Jesus Christ or a Gautam Buddha; you are not acceptable as you are; if you want respectability, honor, respect, recognition, then you have to become somebody according to the ideas of the society in which you are born. So everybody is led astray, away from his nature, away from his being, and the farther away he goes from his being, the more miserable he will become.

I have heard about a great surgeon who was retiring at the late age of 75. It was not customary to keep somebody in service for that long, but that surgeon was a master surgeon. In the whole country there was nobody who even came close to him. Even at the age of 75, he was the best surgeon. So rather than getting retired at the age of 60 he was persuaded to continue.

At 75 he said, "Enough is enough. Now, I want to rest and relax. I'm utterly tired."

The day he was leaving his service, his friends gave him a farewell party, and they were all drinking and dancing and rejoicing. But he was standing in a corner, sad and miserable. One of his friends reached to him and asked, "What is the matter? We have come here to give you a joyous festive farewell, and you are standing here in the corner as if somebody has died. Why you are looking so miserable?"

He said, "You have touched my wound. I have been carrying that wound for almost 60 years. I never wanted to be a surgeon. My father was a doctor, my mother was a doctor, and they both forced me to be a surgeon. I wanted to be a musician. And they both hammered me,'Are you mad? If you become a musician, at the most you will be a street singer. But if you listen to us, we will send you to the best educational institutions, to the best medical college, to the best surgical institute. We will make you one of the great surgeons. You will leave a name behind you in the history.'

"I was helpless, as every child is. They forced me; I became a surgeon. And they were right, I became world famous. But I have never felt any joy. I have been working like a robot. Perhaps that is the reason why I am such a good surgeon, because I have lost my human heart. My heart is almost dead. If I had become a musician, perhaps nobody would have ever heard my name, but what does that matter. I would have felt fulfilled, satisfied. I would have been my own self."

This has happened to almost everybody. Only once in a while, by accident a child escapes, survives, protects his own destiny and does not allow anybody to drag him into other directions.

Nietzsche is right, but he provides no cure. His diagnosis is right because he is only a thinker, a great thinker. And I have always loved him for his insights. But this is the poverty of the West.

It is not only the question of Friedrich Nietzsche; none of the philosophers in the West are meditators.

They are only thinkers. By thinking, they come to certain conclusions. By logic, by argument, they try to find something closest to truth, but it is never the truth.

You cannot think about truth; either you know it or you don't know it. How can you think about love?

Either you love and know, or you don't love and you don't know. There is no third alternative.

Nietzsche lived just in thoughts. Otherwise he had the potential of being a Gautam Buddha for the West. He had the capacity, the caliber, but the West has missed the very dimension of meditation.

Their philosophers have remained only thinkers.

The East has not produced great philosophers like Friederich Nietzsche - there is no parallel in the East. The East has never bothered about polishing, sharpening, thinking, knowing that by thinking you cannot arrive at your being, to your truth, to your godliness, to self-realization.

Nietzsche lived a miserable life, full of worry, anxiety, anguish, angst. This is strange. Such a great thinker, but his life is nothing but anguish. Gautam Buddha may not have been such a great thinker.

He was not, but his life was so calm, so quiet, so peaceful.

And the strangest phenomenon is that the Western philosopher has been thinking, "What is truth?"

and has never been able to find it. And the Eastern mystic, non-philosopher, has never been thinking about truth. He has been on the contrary, dissolving thoughts, getting out of the mind, finding a space in himself where no thought has ever entered. And in that space he has encountered God Himself.

The Western philosopher creates great edifices of thought, but his whole life is so poor.

Nietzsche went mad... you cannot conceive of Gautam Buddha going mad. Not a single mystic in the whole ten thousand years of history in the East has ever gone mad. The deeper they have entered into themselves, the more sane they have become. But the Western thinker almost always, if he's really a great thinker, ends up either being mad or committing suicide.

The old proverb is, "A tree is known by its fruit." A philosopher or a mystic is also known by his fruit.

What is his ultimate flowering, madness or enlightenment? suicide or self-realization?

Mathilda, you are saying, "Osho, your thinking frequently reminds me of Nietzsche's realism...."

There is some similiarity, but there is also a great difference. Nietzsche's realism is only a conclusion of logic. My realism is an experience of silence. His realism is based on arguments. My realism is based on my experience. His realism leads him towards madness. My realism has led me beyond mind into a state of no-mind, into utter sanity, from where you cannot fall back.

A medical student is taking a test, and one of the questions is, "Name the three best advantages of mother's milk." The student immediately writes, "1. It has all the healthful nutrients needed to sustain a baby. 2. It is inside the mother's body, and therefore protected from germs and infections." But the student can't think of the third answer. He tries hard, and finally he writes,"3. It comes in such nice containers."

What else to do? He did his best, thinking about the third best quality.

Thinking has always been leading people, societies, cultures, into very ridiculous conclusions.

Thinking has not proved a blessing to humanity, while meditation has proved a tremendous ecstasy, and the ultimate experience of deathlessness. I am all for meditation.

Nietzsche was very much against Jesus and against Gautam Buddha too. Although he had no idea, at least about Gautam Buddha, his antagonism was based on Gautam Buddha's support of feminine qualities - compassion, love, silence, non-violence, kindness, grace.

Nietszche was absolutely in favor of the qualities of a warrior. The warrior cannot be compassionate, cannot be kind, cannot be graceful; he has to be inhuman, cruel. And it is not a coincidence that out of Friedrich Nietzsche's realism Adolf Hitler got the idea of his Nazi philosophy. You cannot distort Gautam Buddha's words into a Nazi philosophy - that is impossible. However hard you try, you cannot derive from his philosophy a second world war.

Nietzsche cannot be absolutely forgiven. Adolf Hitler was not a great thinker - he was almost retarded - and he chose parts of Nietzsche and distorted them. But still some responsibility of Frederick Nietzsche is there, and the reason is that he himself did not live a life of peace, joy and love. He was very frustrated, utterly against existence, not grateful at all to existence, but irritated - why have I been given life?

I can understand, he was a troubled man, but nobody else is responsible for it. He never tried to find a simple fact: " What is the secret of the peaceful life of Lao Tzu, Chuang Tzu, Mahavira, Bodhidharma, Tilopa? All these Eastern mystics who have lived so joyously and so dancingly, what is their secret?

Western philosophers have remained almost blind; even today the same is the case. It will be a great day in the history of man when Western philosophy starts to enter into the mysteries of the Eastern achievement. Perhaps that will be the beginning of East and West meeting.

The East is outwardly poor, but inwardly has a richness. The West is outwardly rich, but inwardly is very poor. Both can meet, and in their meeting the whole of humanity can be rich - outwardly, inwardly. And when you can be rich so totally, why be rich only halfheartedly? Yet the other half remains poor.

If one has to choose - if there is no other way, and these are the only alternatives - then I will say the East has chosen well. It is better to be outwardly poor, and inwardly rich, but I don't think that is the only possibility.

My approach is to create a third alternative, where East and West can meet and merge. And I don't see any difficulty at all.

Okay, Vimal?

Yes, Osho.

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