Three Floors of Buddha’s Temple – Osho – Sat Sangha Salon

The magnificent temple that Buddha built consists of three floors; his teaching has three dimensions to it, or three layers. And you will have to be very patient to understand those three layers. I say so because they have been misunderstood down the centuries.

The first floor of Buddha’s teaching is known as Hinayana; the second floor is known as Mahayana, and the third floor is known as Vajrayana. Hinayana means ‘the small vehicle’, ‘the narrow way’. Mahayana means ‘the great vehicle’, ‘the wide way’. And Vajrayana means ‘the supreme vehicle’, ‘the ultimate way’, ‘the transcendental way’. Hinayana is the beginning and Vajrayana is the climax, the crescendo.

Hinayana starts from where you are. Hinayana tries to help you to change your mechanical habits; it is just like Hatha Yoga — very body-oriented, believes in great discipline; strict, almost repressive — at least it looks repressive. It is not repressive, but the whole work of Hinayana consists in changing your centuries old habits.

Just as a tightrope-walker starts leaning to the left if he feels that he is going to fall towards the right, to balance one has to move to the opposite. By moving to the opposite, a balance arises —but that balance is temporary, momentary. Again you will start falling into the new direction, then again you will need balance and you will have to move to the opposite.

Sex is the very basic problem. And all the habits that man has created are basically sex-oriented. That’s why no society allows sex total freedom. All the cultures that have existed — sophisticated, un-sophisticated, Eastern, Western, primitive, civilized — all cultures have tried in some way to control the sexual energy of man. It seems to be the greatest power over man. It seems that if man is allowed total freedom about sex, he will simply destroy himself.

Skinner reports about a few experiments he was doing with rats. He has invented a new theory, that electrodes can be put into the human or animal brain, attached to particular centres in the brain and you just push a button and that centre will be stimulated inside you.

There is a sex centre in the brain. In fact, you are more controlled by the sex centre in the brain than the actual sex centre of your body. That’s why fantasy works so much. That’s why pornography has so much appeal. The pornography cannot appeal to the sex centre itself; it stimulates the brain centre attached to the sex centre. Immediately the sex centre, the physiological sex centre, starts being active once the mind is active.

He fixed electrodes into rats’ brains and taught them how to push the button whenever they wanted sexual stimulation and an inner orgasm. He was surprised, he was not expecting that this was going to happen: those rats completely forgot everything, food, sleep, play — everything they forgot. They continuously pushed the button! One rat did it six thousand times and died; he died pushing the button. Six thousand times! He forgot everything… then nothing else matters.

Sooner or later, some Skinner or somebody else is going to give you also a small box to keep in your pocket, and whenever you feel sexual just push a button and your brain centre will become active and will give you beautiful orgasms and nobody will ever know what is happening inside you. But you will almost follow the rat — then what is the point of doing anything else? You will kill yourself.

Sex is such a great attraction that if there were not limitations on it…. First there is a limitation that body puts on it. A man cannot have too many orgasms in a day; if you are young, three, four; if you become older, then one; when you become a little older still, then even that becomes difficult — once a week, once a month. And, by and by, your body puts so many limitations on it.

Women are more free that way. The body has no limitation. That’s why, all over the world, women have been completely repressed. She has not been allowed freedom; she has not been allowed even freedom to have orgasms in the past  because she can have multiple orgasms. Within seconds she can have many orgasms — six, twelve. Then no man will be able to satisfy a woman; then no man will be able to satisfy any woman. Then only group sex will be able to satisfy. A woman will need at least twelve husbands — that will create tremendous complexities.

That’s why, down the centuries, for thousands of years, women were brought up in such a way that they have completely forgotten that they can have orgasm. Just within these fifty years women have again started learning what orgasm is. And with their learning, problems have arisen all over the world. Marriage is on the rocks. Marriage cannot exist with women having the capacity of multiple orgasm. And man only has capacity for one orgasm. There can be no compatibility between the two. Then monogamy cannot exist. It will become difficult.

This society and the pattern that it has evolved up to now is doomed. Man has released some energy that has always been kept under a certain rigid control. But the attraction has always been there, whether you repress, whether you control, discipline, that doesn’t make any difference. The attraction is there — twenty-four hours, deep down like a substratum, sexuality goes on like a river flowing. It is a continuum. You may eat, you may earn money, you may work, but you are doing everything for sex.

Somewhere, sex remains the goal… and this pattern has to be changed, otherwise your energy will go on being drained, your energy will go on being dissipated, your energy will go on moving into the earth. It will not rise towards heaven. It will not have an upward surge.

Hinayana works just exactly where you are. You are continuously obsessed with sex? — Hinayana tries to remove this obsession. It gives you a certain discipline, a very rigid discipline, how to drop out of it.

Hinayana says there are four steps to drop out of sex. The first is called purifying. The second is called enriching. The third is called crystallizing. The fourth is called destroying.

First you have to move your total energy against sex, so that sexual habits developed in many lives no longer interfere — that is called purifying. You change your consciousness, you shift. From sexual obsession you move to anti-sexuality.

The second step is called enriching. When you have moved to non-sexuality, then you have to enjoy non-sexuality; you have to celebrate your celibacy. Because if you don’t celebrate your celibacy, again sex will start pulling you backwards. Once you start celebrating your celibacy, then the pull of sex will be completely gone, and gone forever.

You are obsessed with sex because you don’t know any other sort of celebration. So the problem is not sex really; the problem is that you don’t know any other celebration. Nature allows you only one joy, and that is of sex. Nature allows you only one enjoyment, that is of sex. Nature allows you only one thrill, and that is of sex.

Hinayana says there is a greater thrill waiting for you — if you move towards celibacy. But the celibacy should not be violently forced. If you violently enforce it you will not be able to enjoy it. One has to be just aware of the sexual habits, and through awareness one has to shift by and by towards celibacy.

Celibacy should be brought very slowly. All that brings you again and again to sexuality has to be dropped slowly, in steps. And once you start enjoying the energy that becomes available, when you are not obsessed with sex, just that pure energy becomes a dance in you — that is called enriching. Now, your energy is not wasted. Your energy goes on showering on yourself.

Remember, there are two types of celibates. One: who has simply forced celibacy upon himself — he is a wrong type, he is doing violence to himself. The other: who has tried to understand sexuality, what it is, why it is; who has watched, observed, lived through it, and, by and by, has become aware of its futility; by and by, has become aware of a deep frustration that comes after each sexual act.

In the sexual act you have a certain thrill, a moment of forgetfulness, a moment of oblivion. You feel good, for a few seconds, only for a few seconds, you drop out of this routine world. Sex gives you a door to escape into some other world — which is non-tense; there is no worry; you are simply relaxed and melting. But have you observed? After each sexual act you feel frustrated.

Sex has promised too much, but it has not been supplied. It is difficult to find a man or a woman who does not feel a little frustrated after the sexual act, who does not feel a little guilty. I am not talking about the guilt that priests have imposed upon you. Even if nobody has imposed any guilt upon you, you will feel a little guilt — that is part, a shadow of the sexual act. You have lost energy, you feel depleted, and nothing has been gained. The gain is not very substantial. You have been befooled, you have been tricked, by a natural hypnosis — you have been tricked by the body, you have been deceived. Hence comes a frustration.

Hinayana says: Watch this frustration more deeply. Watch the sexual act and the way your energy moves into the sexual act; become aware of it and you will see there is nothing in it. And frustration. The more you become aware, the less will be the enjoyment and the more will be the frustration. Then the shift has started taking place: your consciousness is moving away, and naturally, and spontaneously. You are not forcing it.

The second step becomes available: enriching. Your own energy goes on feeding your being. You no more throw it into the other’s body; you no more throw it out. It becomes a deep accumulation inside you. You become a pool. And out of that feeling of energy you feel very cool. Sex is very hot. The enriching stage is very cool, calm, collected. There IS a celebration, but it is very silent. There IS a dance to it, but it is very graceful; there is elegance to it.

Then comes the third step: crystallizing. When this energy inside you has started an inner dance, by and by, slowly, enjoying it more and more, becoming more and more aware of it, a certain chemical crystallization happens in you. Exactly the same word was used by Gurdjieff in his work: crystallization. Your fragments fall together, you become one. A unity arises in you. In fact, for the first time you can say “I have an I.” Otherwise there were many I’s; now you have one I, a big I which controls everything. You have become your master.

And the fourth step is destroying. When you have one I, then it can be destroyed; when you have many I’s, they cannot be destroyed. When your energy has become one and is centred, it can be killed, it can be completely destroyed. When it is a crowd it is difficult to destroy it. You destroy one fragment; there are a thousand other fragments. When you rush after those other fragments, the first one grows again. It is just like the way trees grow branches: you cut one, three branches sprout out of it.

You can destroy sexuality totally only when it has become a crystallized phenomenon; When a person has accumulated too much energy and has become one, is no more fragmentary, no more split no more schizophrenic, then Buddhists have a special term for it they call it ‘Manjusri’s sword’.

It is said that when Manjusri reached to this third stage — he was a disciple of Buddha, a great disciple of Buddha — when he reached to this stage of crystallization, in one single moment he took his sword and destroyed it completely, utterly, in a single moment. It is not a gradual process then. That has become known down the centuries as ‘the sword of Manjusri’.

When a person reaches to the third state, he can just raise a sword and destroy it completely  in one single attack. Because now the enemy is there, now the enemy is no longer elusive, now there are no longer many enemies — just one enemy confronting you. And the sword is just the sword of perfect awareness, mindfulness, self-remembering. It is a very sharp sword.

When Buddha destroyed his own sexuality, it is said he roared like a lion — because for the first time the whole absurdity of it became clear. And so many lives wasted! so many lives of sheer stupidity — gone forever. He was so happy he roared like a lion.

These are the four steps, and today’s sutras are concerned with these four steps. Before we enter into the sutras, a few more things have to be understood.

The second vehicle is Mahayana. When your sexual energy is no longer obsessed with the other’s body, when you are completely free of the other’s body, when your energy has a freedom to it, then Mahayana becomes possible — the second floor of Buddha’s temple.

Mahayana makes it possible for you to be loving. Ordinarily we think sex makes people loving —sex can never make people loving. In fact, it is sexuality that prevents love from growing, because it is the same energy that has to become love. It is being destroyed in sex. To become love, the same energy has to move to the heart centre. Mahayana belongs to the heart centre.

Hinayana works at the sex centre — Muladhar. Mahayana works at the heart centre — it says love, prayer, have to be developed now. Energy is there, now you can love. Energy is there, now you can pray.

Mahayana is loving-effort. One has to love unconditionally — the trees and the rocks and the sun and the moon and the people —but now love has no sexuality in it. It is very cool, it is very tranquil.

If you come near a person whose energy is moving in his heart centre, you will suddenly feel you are moving under a deep cool shade, no hot energy. You will feel suddenly a breeze surrounding you. The person of love, the person who lives at the heart centre, is to a traveller like a shady tree, or cool running water, or a breeze fragrant with many blossoms.

Mahayana is not afraid of sex. Hinayana is afraid of sex. Hinayana is afraid of sex because you are too much obsessed with sex. You have to move to the opposite. Mahayana is not afraid of sex — it has attained to the balance; there is no fear of the opposites. Mahayana is when the tightrope-walker is balanced; he neither leans to the left nor to the right.

Then the third and the final stage, the third floor of Buddha’s temple, is Vajrayana. ‘Vajra’ means diamond — it is the most precious teaching; certainly very difficult to understand. Vajrayana is Buddhist Tantra.

Vajrayana is called ‘vajra’, the diamond, because the diamond cuts everything. The diamond vehicle, the way of the diamond, Vajrayana, cuts everything completely, through and through, all materiality, all desire, all attachment. Even the desire to be born in heaven, the desire to be in a peaceful state, the desire to become a Buddha, the desire to have Nirvana, enlightenment — even these beautiful desires are cut completely.

Vajrayana knows no difference between the world and Nirvana, knows no difference between ignorance and knowledge, knows no difference, no distinctions — all distinctions are dropped —knows no distinction between man and woman.

Now let me explain it to you.

On the stage of Hinayana, man is man, woman is woman. And man is attracted towards woman, and the woman is attracted towards man — they are out-going; their attraction is somewhere outside them. Of course, they will be slaves. When your attraction is somewhere outside you, you cannot be independent of it.

That’s why lovers never forgive each other, they cannot. They are annoyed. You love a person and you are irritated by the person at the same time. There is a reason for it. There is constant fight between lovers. The reason is: you cannot forgive the lover, because you know you are dependent on him or on her. How can you forgive your slavery? You know your woman makes you happy, but if she decides not to make you happy, then?… then suddenly you are unhappy. Your happiness is in her hands. Her happiness is in your hands. Whenever somebody else controls your happiness, you cannot forgive the other.

Jean-Paul Sartre says: “The other is hell” — and he is right. He has a great insight into it. The other is hell because you have to depend on the other. Sex can NOT make you free; somehow it takes you away from yourself; it takes you farther and farther away from yourself. The goal is the other.

Gurdjieff used to say sex is one-arrowed — the arrow is moving towards the other. Exactly the same metaphor has been used by Vajrayana: sex is one-arrowed — it goes towards the other. Love is double-arrowed — it goes to the other and to you also. In love there is balance.

One arrow going towards the other, then you have to work with Hinayana. Two-arrowed: one arrow going towards the other, one arrow coming towards you — you have attained to balance; that lopsidedness is no more there.

A man of love is never angry with the other, because he is not really dependent on the other. He can be happy alone too; his arrow is double-arrowed — he can be happy alone too. Of course, he still shares his happiness with the other, but he is no longer dependent on the other. Now it is no longer a relationship of dependence: it is a relationship of interdependence. It is a mutual friendship. They share energies, but nobody is anybody’s slave.

In Vajrayana the arrow completely disappears. There is no you and no other; I and thou, both are dropped. The mechanism has to be understood.

When you are looking for a woman or for a man, you don’t know one very important factor: that your woman is within you and your man too. Each man is both man and woman, and each woman is both woman and man. It has to be so!… because you are born out of two parents. One was man, one was woman; they have contributed to your being fifty percent each. You have something of your father and you have something of your mother. Half of you belongs to the male energy; half of you belongs to the female energy — you are both.

In Hinayana you have to work hard to bring your energy to the inner woman or the inner man; that is its whole work.

Just recently, in this century, Carl Gustav Jung became aware of this fact, of this fact of bisexuality, that no man is pure man and no woman is pure woman. In each man a woman exists, and in fact every man is searching for that woman somewhere outside. That’s why suddenly one day you come across a woman and you feel, “Yes, this is the right woman for me.” How do you feel it? What is the criterion? How do you judge? — It is not rational, you don’t reason it out. It happens so suddenly, like a flash. You were not thinking about it, you have not reasoned it out. Suddenly if somebody asks you, “Why have you fallen in love with this woman?” you will shrug your shoulders. You will say, “I don’t know but I have fallen in love. Something has happened.”

What has happened? Jung says you have an image of woman inside you; that image somehow fits with this woman. This woman seems to be similar to that image in some way or other. Of course, no woman can be absolutely similar to the inner woman, that’s why no lover can ever be absolutely satisfied. A little similar, maybe: the way she walks; maybe her sound, her voice; maybe the way she looks, maybe her blue eyes; maybe her nose, maybe the colour of her hair.

You have an image inside you that has come from your mother, from your mother’s mother, from your mother’s mother’s mother — ALL the women that have preceded you, they have contributed to that image. It is not exactly like your mother, otherwise things would have been simple. Your mother is involved in it; your mother’s mother is also involved and so on and so forth. They all have contributed little bits.

And it is the same with your man: your father has contributed, your father’s father, and so on and so forth. From your father to Adam, and from your mother to Eve, the whole continuum has contributed to it. Nobody exactly knows, there is no way really to know, whom you are seeking. A man is searching for a woman, a woman is searching for a man — the search is very vague. There is no clear-cut image, but somewhere in your heart you carry it; in the dark corner of your soul you keep it, it is there.

So many times many women and many men will appear to fulfil something of it, but only something. So each lover will give you a little satisfaction and much dissatisfaction. A part that fits will satisfy, and all other parts which don’t fit will never satisfy.

Have you watched it? Whenever you fall in love with a man or a woman, you immediately start changing the man and the woman according to something that you also don’t know what…. Wives go on changing their husbands their whole lives: “Don’t do this! Be like this, behave like this!”

Just the other day, Mulla Nasrudin’s wife was saying to me, “Finally, Osho, I succeeded.”

I asked, “About what?”

She said, “I have stopped Mulla Nasrudin biting his nails.”

I said, “Biting his nails? Fifty years you have been married together — Mulla is seventy — now you have been able after fifty years?”

She said, “Yes!”

I asked, “But how did you succeed, tell me?”

She said, “Now I simply hide his teeth so he cannot bite.”

People go on trying to change. Nobody ever changes — I have never seen, I have never come across it. People even pretend that “Yes, we have changed,” but nobody can change. Everybody remains himself. The whole effort is futile, but the urge to change is there. Why is the urge to change there?

The urge to change is for a real necessity: the woman is trying to make her husband fit with some vague image inside her. Then she will be happy that he does not drink, that he does not smoke, that he does not go after other women… and a thousand and one things… that he always goes to the temple, that he listens to the saints. She has a certain image: she wants her husband to be a hero, a saint, a great man. The ordinary human being does not satisfy her.

And the husband is also trying in a thousand and one ways: brings beautiful clothes, diamonds, rubies and pearls, and goes on decorating his wife. He is trying to find a Cleopatra. Somewhere he has some image of a beautiful woman, the most beautiful woman. Now he tries — even from his very childhood.

I have heard:

The old man asked his precocious six-year-old how he liked the new little girl next door.

“W-e-l-l,” said the kid, “she’s no Elizabeth Taylor, but she’s nice.”

Now even small children think about Hema Malini and think about Elizabeth Taylor. And he says, “She’s no Elizabeth Taylor, but she’s nice.” And this conflict continues. The reason is that we are always looking for someone who is not outside.

Hinayana turns you from looking outside. It says: Close your eyes to the outside. Mahayana makes you more alert and aware, fills your inner chamber with more light, so that you can see the inner woman. And Vajrayana makes it possible for you so that you can have an inner orgasm with your man inside or your woman inside. That inner orgasm will satisfy you, nothing else.

These three steps are of tremendous meaning.

-OSHO

From The Buddha Said, Chapter Fifteen

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

Also published in The Discipline of Transcendence, V.3, Chapter Seven

An MP3 audio file of this discourse can be downloaded from Osho.com, or you can read the entire book online at the Osho Library.

Many of Osho’s books are available online from Amazon.com and in the U.S. from OshoStore-Sedona and Osho Here and Now.

Osho : Gurdjieff Sacred Dances

Gurdjieff has prepared a group of dancers. The dancers created such a meditative energy, such a great wave of energy, that those who had come just to see the dance, suddenly forgot the dance completely. Something else was there by the side, a door opened through it.

GURDJIEFF created many dances for such techniques. He was working on this technique. All the dances he was using in his school were, really, swaying in circles. All the dances were in circles – just whirling but remaining aware inside, by and by making the circles smaller and smaller. A time comes when the body stops, but the mind inside goes on moving, moving, moving. If you have been traveling in a train for twenty hours, after you have come home, after you have left the train, if you close your eyes you will feel that you are still traveling. Still you are traveling. The body has stopped, but the mind is still feeling the vehicle.

So just do this technique. Gurdjieff created phenomenal dances, very beautiful. In this century he worked miracles – not miracles like Satya Sai Baba. Those are not miracles; any street magician can do them. But Gurdjieff really created miracles. He prepared a group of a hundred people for meditative dancing, and he was showing that dance to an audience in New York for the first time. A hundred dancers were on the stage whirling. Those who were in the audience, even their minds began whirling. There were a hundred white-robed dancers just whirling. When he indicated with his hand, they would whirl, and the moment he would say, “Stop,” there would be dead silence.

That was a stop for the audience, but not for the dancers – because the body can stop immediately, but the mind then takes the movement inside; it goes on and on. It was beautiful even to look at, because a hundred persons suddenly became dead statues. It created a sudden shock in the audience also, because a hundred movements – beautiful movements, rhythmical movements – suddenly stopped. You would be looking at them moving, whirling, dancing, and suddenly the dancers stopped. Then your thought would also stop. Many in New York felt that it was a weird phenomenon: their thoughts stopped immediately.

But for the dancers, the dance continued inside, and the inside whirling circles became smaller and smaller until they became centered. One day it happened that they were coming just to the edge of the stage, dancing. It was expected, supposed, that Gurdjieff would stop them just before they danced down the stage onto the audience. A hundred dancers were just on the edge of the stage. One step more and they would all fall down into the hall. The whole hall was expecting that suddenly Gurdjieff would say stop, but he turned his back to light his cigar.

He turned his back to the dancers to light his cigar, and the whole group of a hundred dancers fell down from the stage upon the floor – on a naked stone floor. The whole audience stood up. They were screaming, shouting, and they were thinking that many must have broken their bones – it was such a crash. But not a single one was hurt; not even a single bruise was there.They asked Gurdjieff what had happened. No one had been hurt, and the crash was such that it seemed impossible. The reason was only this: they were really not in their bodies at that moment. They were slowing down their inner circling.

And when Gurdjieff saw that now they were completely oblivious of their bodies, he allowed them to fall down.If you are completely oblivious of your body, there is no resistance. A bone is broken because of resistance. If you are falling down, you resist: you go against the pull of gravity. That going against, that resistance, is the problem – not gravity. If you can fall down with gravity, if you can cooperate with it, then no possibility of being hurt will arise.

Source : “Gurdjieff created phenomenal dances” from “Vigyan Bhairav Tantra Vol. 1″ – Osho
www.osho.com

“Sai Baba” and “the Sai Baba Movement”

If you Google the name “Sai Baba”, of the (alleged) 2,360,000 references instantly computed, the majority of the first hundred refer to (Sathya) Sai Baba. (A Yahoo search offers the even more mind-boggling total of 6,610,000 items.) If, however, you type the URLs http://www.saibaba.org or http://www.saibaba.com into your Internet browser, you will be referred to two sites belonging to the Organisation and the devotees of Sai Baba of Shirdi (or Shirdi Sai Baba, or Shirdi Sai). This original bearer of the name “Sai Baba” was a Muslim / Hindu holy man or saint who died in 1918 and has a widespread Indian and international (but mainly ethnic Indian) Organisation. In India his followers are most numerous in the northern half, down to the latitude of Mumbai but he is also well known in the south. His dual Muslim-Hindu characteristics are reflected in his name: ‘Sai’, from a Persian word for ‘saint’ and ‘Baba’, a common respectful Indian term for ‘father’.

The Internet results also reveal interesting differences between the two major Search engines, Yahoo and Google. (Food for thought.)

On Yahoo (1 December 2008) the first item on the search list for ‘Sai Baba’ is – i.e. the Shirdi Sai Baba Organisation (in Chicago).
Number two is , an unofficial and apparently out of date Sathya Sai Baba website.
Number three on the list is (Shirdi Sai Baba).
Fourth is (one of several official Sathya Sai websites).

The Google search offers a different mix:
1. (Sathya Sai, official)
2. the Wikipedia article on Sathya Sai Baba (a controversial and incomplete offering)
3. (Shirdi Sai, in Chicago)
4. (critical of Sathya Sai Baba)

‘Sathya Sai’ (like ‘Sai’) is an alternative devotee name for Sathya Sai Baba, reportedly born in 1926 as Sathya Narayana Raju, in or near the remote southern Indian village of Puttaparthi in the state of Andhra Pradesh. According to his official biography, in 1940 [read: 1943], following a traumatic seizure or illness, Sathya Narayana declared himself to be the reincarnation of [Shirdi] Sai Baba and rapidly became famous locally for his healing, exorcisms, and other miracles. Charismatic Sathya went on to claim full avatarhood and divine powers and, eventually, to become the most famous living Indian guru in the world. In the past quarter of a century the fame of Sathya, vigorously promoted by his transnational charitable Organisation and his millions of devotees, especially those from outside India, has become far better known internationally (though not throughout the whole of India) than the original bearer of the Sai Baba title. This explains why he is identified by most “Westerners” and the Google machines (whose logarithms operate on the rather crude but practical basis of quantity of references or links to a given word or term) as “Sai Baba”. His Organisation and devotees also refer to him simply as ‘Sai’ (which he has always boldly told them means ‘Divine Mother’, despite the obvious etymological inaccuracy).

While the theologically dual nature of Shirdi Sai (Baba) as Muslim fakir and Hindu miracle-making saint has attracted both hagiographical and academic interest, the indisputably charismatic Sathya Sai (Baba) has attracted a massive amount of hagiographical writing and some critical attention but, until very recently, only minor scholarly interest (a lacuna possibly explained by Sathya’s strident and reiterated claims of Divinity, his alleged miracles – and academic Haraldsson’s failure to disprove them – as well as his enigmatic and flamboyant reputation).

A further factor in the story of the two Sai Babas is that, after sixty years of self promotion and unparalleled adoration and worship as God on Earth (or Avatar) by (possibly) millions of followers, the background murmurs of doubt and denial of Sathya Sai’s Divine claims have been growing in volume and geographical extension, particularly since the appearance and wide diffusion of major new Internet postings beginning in 2000 and followed in 2006 by many blogs. Therefore, when media and Internet allegations, analyses, revelations, headlines and emotional controversy are directed at “Sai Baba” rather than “Sathya Sai Baba”, followers of Shirdi Sai Baba have a right to feel aggrieved and although the name Sai Baba is now firmly established in current use by devotees of both of these spiritual icons and by the public, it would surely be a courtesy to Shirdi Sai Baba and his devotees if, as often as possible, people (especially academic writers and journalists) were to refer to the ‘junior Sai Baba’, as Sathya Sai Baba, or Sathya Sai.

Sai Baba Movement

As for the term ‘Sai Baba Movement’, used by academics and a few other writers, it is either ambiguous or misleading, depending on the context in which it is used. The two Sai Baba Organisations, regardless of the prominent worship of Shirdi Sai in Sathya Sai ashrams because of Sathya Sai’s specific reincarnation claims and supposed identity, have always been completely separate, one based in the state of Marathi-speaking Maharashtra, the other further south in Sathya Sai’s Telugu homeland, Andhra Pradesh.

Especially misleading, and easily avoidable, is the use of ‘Sai Baba Movement’ when used as a variant for ‘Sathya Sai Baba Movement’ (sometimes on the same page). As explained above, there are two independent Sai Baba Movements and, for disambiguation purposes, they should therefore be referred to as the Shirdi Sai Baba Movement and the Sathya Sai Baba Movement. (It seems unlikely, after so many years of silence, that the ‘senior’ organisation would ever wish to press its prior claim to the Sai Baba title.)

One of the first to use the term ‘Sai Baba Movement’ seems to have been an academic, Professor Charles S. J. White, in his pioneering 1972 plea for scholars of religion to “consider seriously the nature of Indian sainthood and more particularly the so-called ‘living saints’”.
(See ‘The Sai Baba Movement: Approaches to the Study of Indian Saints’, Journal of Asian Studies, XXXI, No. 4 (August 1972), 863-878. Reprinted in Ruhela and Robinson (eds.), Sai Baba and His Message, 1976, pp. 40-66.)

Professor White wrote his research study about a group of living saints who had resided in the Poona and Bangalore areas and whom he considered homogeneous enough to be called “The Sāi Bābā Movement” (p. 863). He is referring to (Shirdi) Sai Baba, Upasani Baba, Mata Godavari, and Sathya Sai Baba. Since this spontaneous christening by White, other scholars seem to have simply adopted the abbreviated label without question. (A notable scholarly dissident here is Kevin R. D. Shepherd.)

Much more surprising is that the following misleading assertion accompanied by the flimsiest evidence imaginable has not received critical attention from White’s peers and successors:
“The competence of Sathya Sai Baba to serve as the successor of Shirdi Sai Baba is increasingly recognized in the Sai Baba cult. For instance in one of Shirdi Sai Baba’s shrines in Madras, Sathya Sai Baba’s photograph was prominently displayed and I was told that Sathya Sai Baba had attended the dedication of the temple a few years back”(p. 874).

It is no secret outside Andhra Pradesh that most followers of Shirdi Sai have never accepted Sathya’s incarnation claims and, as a curious bibliographical consequence of this divide, there is a dichotomous Shirdi Sai Baba literature: on the one side, the bulk of the books, written by the majority of his followers and, on the other side, those few written by devotees of Sathya Sai Baba who have also become devotees of Shirdi. In the former, readers will find no trace of the alleged new information about Shirdi Sai occasionally ‘omnisciently’ revealed in Sathya Sai’s discourses (notably in 1990 and, with his trademark discrepancies, in 1992); in the latter category of Shirdi books this questionable ‘new’ information is presented as fact – as is anything that Sathya Sai chooses to say in public.

For further background, see Shirdi Essay.

 

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Poetry of Sathya Sai Baba

Once a Buddha, always a Buddha – Kadampa Life

4.5 mins read 

Sometimes people get discouraged with their Tantric practice, thinking it’s beyond them and they should stick to Sutra. But I think Tantra can be pretty straightforward, especially if we can read and follow the instructions of the modern-day Vajra Master Geshe Kelsang who, like Je Tsongkhapa, is known for his ability to reveal Buddha’s wisdom and Tantric teachings in a clear and profound, yet totally accessible, way.

Carrying on from this last article about Tantra.

If we’re used to identifying with our Buddha nature from a Sutra point of view, then we do this now from a Tantric point of view, bringing the result into the path – which makes our progress smooth, joyful, and rapid.

And, remember, we are not plopping an inherently existent ordinary miserable me onto Vajrayogini. There is no such real me — our me or I is mere label, thank goodness. So we are generating some purity in our mind and labelling it with our mere I, Vajrayogini, and growing it from there. Try it and see!

Then we keep coming back to divine pride and clear appearance in very practical, usable ways, both in meditation and throughout our day. This way we transform our life into a very rapid path to enlightenment, which is what Tantra is all about.

As mentioned here, normally we believe the self we normally perceive, the one around which all our problems revolve, and we cherish this self and protect it at all costs. But we slowly come to understand that it is time to stop doing that — I don’t want to do that anymore! It is painful. It is also a ginormous waste of time.

As we get going in our Tantric practice, for a long time we move back and forth between generating as a Deity and identifying as an ordinary being. This is normal, so there’s no need to entertain discouraged thoughts such as: “I thought I had this! I felt so blissful – I can’t believe I got all neurotic and graspy and sad again!”

Subtle impermanence and the emptiness of time

And here is a profound contemplation that I have always found enormously encouraging in this regard, and hope you might too.

When we appear as Vajrayogini or Heruka, we remember that we dissolved away all ordinary appearances, including their time, ie, including the pasts and futures of all ordinary appearances.

Past and future are mere name, mere appearance, now disappeared – so when we arise as Vajrayogini, we have always been Vajrayogini. Our previous identity has dissolved into emptiness, disappeared entirely, and we, Vajrayogini, have never been that person.

Remembering subtle impermanence is invaluable – always, but especially in Tantra. For the present moment to arise, the previous moment has to go out of existence, completely. Yesterday has gone, or where is it?! It had to go for today to arise. Everything before this moment in time has completely disappeared. By the same token, everything after this moment doesn’t exist yet because this moment has to disappear first.

In this article I talk about this incredibly useful teaching from Geshe Kelsang:

In reality we do not remain the same for one moment without changing, let alone for one life. Without the I of the previous moment ceasing, the I of the next moment could not arise. The I of one moment is the cause of the I of the next moment, and a cause and its effect cannot exist at the same time. A sprout, for example, can develop only when its cause, the seed, disintegrates. ~ How to Understand the Mind, page 134

When we arise in bliss and emptiness as a Buddha, the whole past is transformed because there is no past, only pasts of things (as explained in Ocean of Nectar), and Buddha’s past is bliss and emptiness. In that moment the whole future is transformed too, as there are only futures of things.

How long is a dream?

To help us understand this, we can consider our dreams. Dreams arise fully and all at once – they are mere projection of mind, and always present, unravelling moment by moment; but when we meet people in our dreams they have a past and a future, do they not? They were born in Clapham and they are going to die who knows where. All that is part of them in the present moment because this is the only moment there is.

The me of this present moment has a past and a future – so if I am ordinary I have an ordinary & suffering past and future and if I am Vajrayogini I have a pure & blissful past and future.

Wild, huh?! But true.

How old are you?

I was at the Grand Canyon recently, thinking about these rocks. They are, mind-bogglingly enough, millions of years old! Yet at the same time they are a momentary arising, an appearance to mind that is completely new in this moment. In this moment, which I am sharing with this rock, the rock has a past of millions of years whereas I only have a past of three (ahem) decades. 

So once you are Buddha Vajrayogini, you have always been Vajrayogini. And always will be.

Yes, we may forget this due to lacking effort, mindfulness, and familiarity, and the ordinary person might reappear with an ordinary past and future, just like another dream. But it doesn’t invalidate the pure dream of being Vajrayogini; and at the next available opportunity we can dissolve away all the ordinariness and hallucination and go back to the Pure Land.

Eventually we can stay here  24/7, which is liberation. And then guide everyone else to this reality by helping them drop their self-grasping and ordinary appearances as well.

Check out these articles on subtle impermanence for a better idea of all this. And I have a bit more to say on the subject later.

Meantime, the Kadampa Summer Festival in the English Lake District (or Keajra Pure Land), offering the Highest Yoga Tantra empowerments and teachings, starts this Friday! Talk about a life-changing experience. Hope to see some of you there.

Subtle impermanence 

How to be enlightened right now per Tantra

Tantra is not as hard as you may think

Then again people choose Yoga over Gurdjieff….

Greetings,

While exchanging posts with an enigmatic and very well read Zero Hedgian, going by the Handle Gully Foyle, he said this:

Then again people choose Yoga over Gurdjieff….

Really got me thinking.

What is all this choice con-fronting us for? Con-front is “with” front. In your face. And why is it such a mantra, a must have, a right, by god, give me choice….

Yoga over Gurdjieff  is a topic for a book. Especially if you have read his master tome and other books. Beelzbub’s Tales to his grandson. A must read. A mind-twisting attempt at “perfect” literature, perfectively objective that is. Possibly the best I’ve read, and I’ve read a lot.

So choice. Talked about it before, Choice = Cognitive Dissonance.

Choice enables the splitting of our personae. What a great argument for simplicity. The less you have, the less you know you need. That is the virtuous cycle inverse of the current mantra….the more you have, the more you need to have.

Look where they end up….. Spare and alive vs. bloated and barely so.

The line that brought me here is multi-contextual for me, so please  forgive the meandering.

Yoga is the most completely mis-understood exercise form of this time. Why? First, occam’s razor and Cui bono…. who wants you to be healthy? Does a healthy person benefit the Pharmaco-government complex?

The dominant trend-setters of this version of Mother Culture’s dystopia are all life-negative archetypes. The sportsperson, the actor, the politician, the banker, the industrialist. And they all espouse Yoga. Big red flag.

You see, the rub and the nub and the hub of the issue is that Yoga was never about exercise. Yoga was/is all about self-restraint. Fractal self restraint. The focus on strength inverts the very foundation of Yoga, physical Yoga that is.

It was always meant to be a way in, not a builder of muscles or fine physiques.

Also, the topic of my short exchange with Gully was about Science fiction becoming science fact.

If I look at the world around me today, the Solution Set that leaps out at me would have all of the terminology and naming from Dune, the mind-bending work of Frank Herbert.

Also, so much happening since the Stairwell Sigtar dot joining exercise of a week or so ago.

The bird and fish deaths continued unabated, though were neatly kept off the mainstream press after a brief ratings surge. Un-abated. Please goole the phrase and check. Massive fish kill off Maryland, 2 million (how do they count two million fish? makes me suspicious of their counting methodology).

And a twin cyclone system bears down on flood ravaged queensland. I hope the significance of Queen’s Land being flooded is obvious. What does it foretell for London?

And what of those poor Queenslanders, all prepared for Centuries of Global Warming induced droughts, now caught in flooding of biblical proportions. Australia rapes it’s land on a massive scale, especially in the resource rich Queensland State (Coal is the big one, also wheat)…. we are going to learn, faster and faster what the payback for 4 centuries of scorched earth capitalism will look like. May I suggest that it is going to be a little harsh?

Egypt is afire. Or so main stream and alternative media will have us believe. Live pictures tell no lies. The people are furious. But mis-directed anger, righteous especially, is such a huge waste of human energy. And no one knows what the game is, for this North African/Middle East Crisis is engineered. Food shortages soon to add to the tinder-box. Israel, Iran, Iraq, Yemen, Jordan, Saudi Arabia….

And flooding in Saudi Arabia? Hmmmmm……

And in the interesting parallism, fractalism that is life, I’m reading a book called Inhuman Architecture by Hugo Kukelhaus.

Brilliant work, making a strong case for why these buildings of hard lines, bland surfaces and poor ventilation and lighting, robbing us of everything we need, to grow… have been harsh prisons for our nurturing, not wombs, but prisons.

He said >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<

So true and yet we consume out of convenience and consumptive compulsion……think about how closely food is tied to culture and then look at the focus on food in today’s times (form over function, in food…truly a bizarre world) and how much we all over-eat.

What drives us to this un-natural state of dis-ease. Look around. We are soft and round while our manufactured world is hard and straight.

And since we cannot be hard and straight on the outside, try as we might, we become hard and stiff on the inside. Unbending minds in yoga-flexible bodies.

Such a paradox and such a sign of these times.

Fascinating…

For today’s visual shocker… Chinese Oil Inferno…

For the rest, please see:  Chinese Oil Inferno Pictures on Rense.com

And then, the Ship on which I’d done my training in the Indian Navy, INS Vindhyagiri, hit a merchant vessel in Mumbai Harbour and is sitting on the bottom, listing, aflame.

Thanks for reading, definitely strange days…..

By the way, I’ve discovered that it’s perfectly okay to be serious.

Seriously!

?

The Root Problem – Osho – Sat Sangha Salon

The root problem of all problems is mind itself. The first thing to be understood is what this mind is, of what stuff it is made; whether it is an entity or just a process; whether it is substantial, or just dreamlike. And unless you know the nature of the mind, you will not be able to solve any problems of your life.

You may try hard, but if you try to solve single, individual problems, you are bound to be a failure – that is absolutely certain – because in fact no individual problem exists: mind is the problem. If you solve this problem or that, it won’t help because the root remains untouched.

It is just like cutting branches of a tree, pruning the leaves, and not uprooting it. New leaves will come, new branches will sprout – even more than before; pruning helps a tree to become thicker.

Unless you know how to uproot it, your fight is baseless, it is foolish. You will destroy yourself, not the tree.

In fighting you will waste your energy, time, life, and the tree will go on becoming more and more strong, far thicker and dense. And you will be surprised what is happening: you are doing so much hard work, trying to solve this problem and that, and they go on growing, increasing. Even if one problem is solved, suddenly ten problems take its place.

Don’t try to solve individual, single problems – there are none: MIND ITSELF IS THE PROBLEM. But mind is hidden underground; that’s why I call it the root, it is not apparent. Whenever you come across a problem the problem is above ground, you can see it – that’s why you are deceived by it.

Always remember, the visible is never the root; the root always remains invisible, the root is always hidden. Never fight with the visible; otherwise you will fight with shadows. You may waste yourself, but there cannot be any transformation in your life, the same problems will crop up again and again and again. You can observe your own life and you will see what I mean. I am not talking about any theory about the mind, just the “facticity” of it. This is the fact: mind has to be solved.

People come to me and they ask, “How to attain a peaceful mind?” I say to them, “There exists nothing like that: peaceful mind. Never heard of it.”

Mind is never peaceful – no-mind is peace. Mind itself can never be peaceful, silent. The very nature of the mind is to be tense, to be in confusion. Mind can never be clear; it cannot have clarity, because mind is by nature confusion, cloudiness. Clarity is possible without mind, peace is possible without mind, silence is possible without mind – so never try to attain a silent mind. If you do, from the very beginning you are moving in an impossible dimension.

So the first thing is to understand the nature of the mind, only then can something be done.

If you watch, you will never come across any entity like mind. It is not a thing, it is just a process; it is not a thing, it is like a crowd. Individual thoughts exist, but they move so fast that you cannot see the gaps in between. The intervals cannot be seen because you are not very aware and alert, you need a deeper insight. When your eyes can look deep, you will suddenly see one thought, another thought, another thought – but NO MIND.

Thoughts together, millions of thoughts, give you the illusion as if mind exists. It is just like a crowd, millions of people standing in a crowd: is there anything like a crowd? Can you find the crowd other than the individuals standing there? But they are standing together, their togetherness gives you the feeling as if something like a crowd exists – only individuals exist.

This is the first insight into the mind. Watch, and you will find thoughts; you will never come across the mind. And if it becomes your own experience – not because I say it, not because Tilopa sings about it, no, that won’t be of much help – if it becomes YOUR experience, if it becomes a fact of your own knowing, then suddenly many things start changing. Because you have understood such a deep thing about mind, then many things can follow.

Watch the mind and see where it is, what it is. You will feel thoughts floating and there will be intervals. And if you watch long, you will see that intervals are more than the thoughts, because each thought has to be separate from another thought; in fact, each word has to be separate from another word. The deeper you go, you will find more and more gaps, bigger and bigger gaps. A thought floats, then comes a gap where no thought exists; then another thought comes, another gap follows.

If you are unconscious you cannot see the gaps; you jump from one thought to another, you never see the gap. If you become aware you will see more and more gaps. If you become perfectly aware, then miles of gaps will be revealed to you. And in those gaps, satoris happen. In those gaps the truth knocks at your door. In those gaps, the guest comes. In those gaps God is realized, or whatsoever way you like to express it. And when awareness is absolute, then there is only a vast gap of nothingness.

It is just like clouds: clouds move. They can be so thick that you cannot see the sky hidden behind. The vast blueness of the sky is lost, you are covered with clouds. Then you go on watching: one cloud moves and another has not come into the vision yet – and suddenly a peek into the blueness of the vast sky.

The same happens inside: you are the vast blueness of the sky, and thoughts are just like clouds hovering around you, filling you. But the gaps exist, the sky exists. To have a glimpse of the sky is satori, and to become the sky is samadhi. From satori to samadhi, the whole process is a deep insight into the mind, nothing else.

Mind doesn’t exist as an entity – the first thing. Only thoughts exist.

The second thing: the thoughts exist separate from you, they are not one with your nature, they come and go – you remain, you persist. You are like the sky: never comes, never goes, it is always there. Clouds come and go, they are momentary phenomena, they are not eternal. Even if you try to cling to a thought, you cannot retain it for long; it has to go, it has its own birth and death. Thoughts are not yours, they don’t belong to you. They come as visitors, guests, but they are not the host.

Watch deeply, then you will become the host and thoughts will be the guests. And as guests they are beautiful, but if you forget completely that you are the host and they become the hosts, then you are in a mess. This is what hell is. You are the master of the house, the house belongs to you, and guests have become the masters. Receive them, take care of them, but don’t get identified with them; otherwise, they will become the masters.

The mind becomes the problem because you have taken thoughts so deeply inside you that you have forgotten completely the distance; that they are visitors, they come and go. Always remember that which abides: that is your nature, your Tao. Always be attentive to that which never comes and never goes, just like the sky. Change the gestalt: don’t be focused on the visitors, remain rooted in the host; the visitors will come and go.

Of course, there are bad visitors and good visitors, but you need not be worried about them. A good host treats all the guests in the same way, without making any distinctions. A good host is just a good host: a bad thought comes and he treats the bad thought also in the same way as he treats a good thought. It is not his concern that the thought is good or bad.

… Because once you make the distinction that this thought is good and that thought is bad, what are you doing? You are bringing the good thought nearer to yourself and pushing the bad thought further away. Sooner or later, with the good thought you will get identified; the good thought will become the host. And any thought when it becomes the host creates misery – because this is not the truth. The thought is a pretender and you get identified with it. Identification is the disease.

Gurdjieff used to say that only one thing is needed: not to be identified with that which comes and goes. The morning comes, the noon comes, the evening comes, and they go; the night comes and again the morning. You abide: not as you, because that too is a thought – as pure consciousness; not your name, because that too is a thought; not your form, because that too is a thought; not your body, because one day you will realize that too is a thought. Just pure consciousness, with no name, no form; just the purity, just the formlessness and namelessness, just the very phenomenon of being aware – only that abides.

If you get identified, you become the mind. If you get identified, you become the body. If you get identified, you become the name and the form – what Hindus call nama, rupa, name and form – then the host is lost. Then you forget the eternal and the momentary becomes significant. The momentary is the world; the eternal is divine.

This is the second insight to be attained, that you are the host and thoughts are guests.

The third thing, if you go on watching, will be realized soon. The third thing is that thoughts are foreign, intruders, outsiders. NO THOUGHT IS YOURS. They always come from without, you are just a passage. A bird comes into the house from one door, and flies out from another: just like that a thought comes into you and goes out of you.

You go on thinking that thoughts are yours. Not only that, you fight for your thoughts, you say, “This is my thought, this is true.” You discuss, you debate, you argue about it, you try to prove that, “This is my thought.” No thought is yours, no thought is original – all thoughts are borrowed, and not secondhand, because millions of people have claimed those same thoughts before you. Thought is just as outside as a thing.

Somewhere, the great physicist, Eddington, has said that the deeper science goes into matter, the more it becomes a realization that things are thoughts. That may be so, I am not a physicist, but from the other end I would like to tell you that Eddington may be true that things look more and more like thoughts if you go deeper; if you go deeper into yourself, thoughts will look more and more like things. In fact, these are two aspects of the same phenomenon: a thing is a thought, a thought is a thing.

When I say a thought is a thing, what do I mean? I mean that you can throw your thought just like a thing. You can hit somebody’s head with a thought just like a thing. You can kill a person through a thought just as you can throw a dagger. You can give your thought as a gift, or as an infection. Thoughts are things, they are forces, but they don’t belong to you. They come to you; they abide for a while in you and then they leave you. The whole universe is filled with thoughts and things. Things are just the physical part of thoughts, and thoughts are the mental part of things.

Because of this fact, many miracles happen – because thoughts are things. If a person continuously thinks about you and your welfare, it will happen – because he is throwing a continuous force at you. That’s why blessings are useful, helpful. If you can be blessed by someone who has attained no-mind, the blessing is going to be true – because a man who never uses thought accumulates thought energy, so whatsoever he says is going to be true.

In all the Eastern traditions, before a person starts learning no-mind, there are techniques and much emphasis that he should stop being negative, because if you once attain to no-mind and your trend remains negative, you can become a dangerous force. Before the no-mind is attained, one should become absolutely positive. That is the whole difference between white and black magic.

Black magic is nothing but when a man has accumulated thought energy without throwing out his negativity beforehand. And white magic is nothing but when a man has attained too much thought energy, and has based his total being on a positive attitude. The same energy with negativity becomes black; the same energy with positivity becomes white. A thought is a great force, it is a thing.

This will be the third insight. It has to be understood and watched within yourself.

Sometimes it happens that you see your thought functioning as a thing, but just because of too much conditioning of materialism you think this may be just a coincidence. You neglect the fact, you simply don’t give any attention to it; you remain indifferent, you forget about it. But many times you know that sometimes you were thinking about the death of a certain person – and he is dead. You think it is just a coincidence. Sometime you were thinking about a friend and a desire arose in you that it would be good if he comes – and he is on the door, knocking. You think it is a coincidence. It is not coincidence. In fact, there is nothing like coincidence, everything has its causality. Your thoughts go on creating a world around you.

Your thoughts are things, so be careful about them. Handle them carefully! If you are not very conscious, you can create misery for yourself and for others – and you have done that. And remember, when you create misery for somebody, unconsciously, at the same time, you are creating misery for yourself – because a thought is a two-edged sword. It cuts you also simultaneously when it cuts somebody else.

Just two or three years ago, one Israeli, Uri Geller, who has been working on thought energy, displayed his experiment on BBC television in England. He can bend anything just by thinking: somebody else keeps a spoon in his hand ten feet away from Uri Geller, and he just thinks about it – and the spoon bends immediately. You cannot bend it by your hand, and he bends it by his thought. But a very rare phenomenon happened on the BBC television; even Uri Geller was not aware that this is possible.

Thousands of people in their homes were seeing the experiment. And when he did his experiment, bent things, in many people’s houses many things fell and became distorted – thousands of things all over England. It was as if the energy was being broadcast. And he was doing the experiment at a ten-foot distance, then from the television screen in people’s homes, around the area of ten feet, many things happened: things got bent, fell down, became distorted. It was weird!

Thoughts are things, and very, very forceful things. There is one woman in Soviet Russia, Mikhailovana. She can do many things to things from far away, she can pull anything towards herself – just by thought. Soviet Russia is not a believer in occult things – a communist country, atheistic – so they have been working on Mikhailovana, on what is happening, in a scientific way. But when she does it, she loses almost two pounds of weight; in a half-hour experiment she loses two pounds. What does it mean?

It means that through thoughts you are throwing energy – and you are continuously doing it. Your mind is a chatterbox. You are broadcasting things unnecessarily. You are destroying people around you, you are destroying yourself.

You are a dangerous thing – and continuously broadcasting. And many things are happening because of you. And it is a great network. The whole world goes on becoming every day more and more miserable because more and more people are on the earth and they are broadcasting more and more thoughts.

The further back you go, you find the earth the more and more peaceful – less and less broadcasters. In the days of Buddha, or in the days of Lao Tzu, the world was very very peaceful, natural; it was a heaven. Why? The population was very, very small, one thing. People were not thinkers too much; they were more and more prone to feeling rather than thinking. And people were praying. In the morning, they would do the first thing and that would be a prayer. In the night they would do the last thing – the prayer. And throughout the whole day also, whenever they would find a moment, they would be praying inside.

What is a prayer? Prayer is sending blessings to all. Prayer is sending your compassion to all. Prayer is creating an antidote of negative thoughts – it is a positivity.

This will be the third insight about thoughts, that they are things, forces, and you have to handle them very carefully.

Ordinarily, not aware, you go on thinking anything. It is difficult to find a person who has not committed many murders in thought; difficult to find a person who has not been doing all sorts of sins and crimes inside the mind – and then these things happen. And remember, you may not murder, but your continuous thinking of murdering somebody may create the situation in which the person is murdered. Somebody may take your thought, because there are weaker persons all around and thoughts flow like water: downwards. If you think something continuously, someone who is a weakling may take your thought and go and kill a person.

That’s why those who have known the inner reality of man, they say that whatsoever happens on the earth, everybody is responsible, everybody. Whatsoever happens in Vietnam, not only are Nixons responsible, everybody who thinks is also responsible. Only one person cannot be held responsible, and that is the person who has no mind; otherwise everybody is responsible for everything that goes on. If the earth is a hell, you are a creator, you participate.

Don’t go on throwing responsibility on others – you are also responsible, it is a collective phenomenon. The disease may bubble up anywhere, the explosion may happen millions, thousands of miles away from you – that doesn’t make any difference, because thought is a non-spatial phenomenon, it needs no space.

That’s why it travels fastest. Even light cannot travel so fast, because even for light space is needed. Thought travels fastest. In fact it takes no time in traveling, space doesn’t exist for it. You may be here, thinking of something, and it happens in America. How can you be held responsible? No court can punish you, but in the ultimate court of existence you will be punished – you are already punished. That’s why you are so miserable.

People come to me and they say, “We never do anything wrong to anybody, and still we are so miserable.” You may not be doing, you may be thinking – and thinking is more subtle than doing. A person can protect himself from doing, but he cannot protect himself from thinking. For thinking everybody is vulnerable.

No-thinking is a must if you want to be completely freed from sin, freed from crime, freed from all that goes around you – and that is the meaning of a buddha.  A buddha is a person who lives without the mind; then he’s not responsible. That’s why in the East we say that he never accumulates karma; he never accumulates any entanglements for the future. He lives, he walks, he moves, he eats, he talks, he is doing many things, so he must accumulate karma, because karma means activity. But in the East it is said even if a buddha kills, he will not accumulate karma. Why? And you, even if you don’t kill, you will accumulate karma. Why?

It is simple: whatsoever Buddha is doing, he is doing without any mind in it. He is spontaneous, it is not activity. He is not thinking about it, it happens. He is not the doer. He moves like an emptiness. He has no mind for it, he was not thinking to do it. But if the existence allows it to happen, he allows it to happen. He has no more the ego to resist; no more the ego to do.

That is the meaning of being empty and a no-self: just being a non-being, anatta, no-selfness. Then you accumulate nothing; then you are not responsible for anything that goes on around you; then you transcend.

Each single thought is creating something for you and for others. Be alert!

But when I say be alert, I don’t mean that think good thoughts, no, because whenever you think good thoughts, by the side you are also thinking of bad thoughts. How can good exist without bad? If you think of love, just by the side, behind it, is hidden hate. How can you think about love without thinking about hate? You may not think consciously, love may be in the conscious layer of the mind, but hate is hidden in the unconscious – they move together.

Whenever you think of compassion, you think of cruelty. Can you think of compassion without thinking of cruelty? Can you think of nonviolence without thinking of violence? In the very word “nonviolence,” violence enters; in the very concept it is there. Can you think of brahmacharya, celibacy, without thinking of sex? It is impossible, because what will celibacy mean if there is no thought of sex? And if brahmacharya is based on the thought of sex, what type of brahmacharya is this?

No, there is a totally different quality of being which comes by not thinking: not good, not bad, simply a state of no-thinking. You simply watch, you simply remain conscious, but you don’t think. And if some thought enters… it WILL enter, because thoughts are not yours; they are just floating in the air.

All around there is a noosphere, a thought-sphere, all around. Just as there is air, there is thought all around you, and it goes on entering on its own accord. It stops only when you become more and more aware. There is something in it: if you become more aware, a thought simply disappears, it melts, because awareness is a greater energy than thought.

Awareness is like fire to thought. It is just like you burn a lamp in the house and the darkness cannot enter; you put the light off – from everywhere darkness has entered; without taking a single minute, a single moment, it is there. When the light burns in the house, the darkness cannot enter. Thoughts are like darkness: they enter only if there is no light within. Awareness is fire: you become more aware, less and less thoughts enter.

If you become really integrated in your awareness, thoughts don’t enter you; you have become an impenetrable citadel, nothing can penetrate you. Not that you are closed, remember – you are absolutely open; but just the very energy of awareness becomes your citadel. And when no thoughts can enter you, they will come and they will bypass you. You will see them coming, and simply, by the time they reach near you they turn. Then you can move anywhere, then you go to the very hell – nothing can affect you. This is what we mean by enlightenment.

-Osho

From Tantra: The Supreme Understanding, Chapter Two

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

An MP3 audio file of this discourse can be downloaded from Osho.com, or you can read the entire book online at the Osho Library.

Many of Osho’s books are available online from Amazon.com and in the U.S. from OshoStore-Sedona and Osho Here and Now.

Osho Book of Secrets Meditations – Sat Sangha Salon

Below you will find links to recordings that were compiled for Meditation. These files have not been created for entertainment but specifically for use in meditation.  And they are not intended to be used commercially in any way.  They are approximately one hour in length. They are made up of Osho’s spoken words and periods of silence and close with three bells. All of Osho’s words are from the The Book of Secrets discourse series which vary in original recording quality. You can either play the files from here or download them by “right clicking” and choosing “save file as.” Enjoy!

*  Best original recording quality

Between Two Breaths (Book of Secrets #3-1&2) *

Whenever In-Breath and Out-Breath Fuse (Book of Secrets #3-3) *

Attention Between Eyebrows (Book of Secrets #5-1)

See Your Inner Being in Detail (Book of Secrets #21-1)

Remember You Are (Book of Secrets #35-1) *

Wherever Your Mind is Wandering (Book of Secrets #39-2) *

Feel- My Thought (Book of Secrets #55-1)

Before Desire and Before Knowing (Book of Secrets #55-2)

You Are Everywhere (Book of Secrets #57-1)

Thinking No Thing (Book of Secrets #57-2)

Contemplate Something Beyond Perception (Book of Secrets #59-1)*

Perceive One Being as Knower and Known (Book of Secrets #61-1)

Put Mindstuff in Such Inexpressible Fineness (Book of Secrets #65-1)

He Remains in the Subjective (Book of Secrets #73-1)

Each Particular Perception is Limited (Book of Secrets #75-3)

This Consciousness Exists as Each Being (Book of Secrets #77-2

Suppose Your Passive Form to be an Empty Room (Book of Secrets #79-1)

Enter Space, Supportless, Eternal, Still (Book of Secrets #79-4)

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

MP3 audio files of these discourses can be downloaded from Osho.com, or you can read the entire book online at the Osho Library.

The Book of Secrets which contain 112 meditation techniques is currently available from Amazon.

On Death and Dying: Words of Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi

On Death and Dying: Words of Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi

Bhagavan Ramana as a youth

The devotees know that Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi had an intense experience of death in his seventeenth year. After the experience ended, he was established in the realisation of his true Self and the illusion of death died forever.

Here is in part Bhagavan’s description of what happened:

“The shock of the fear of death drove my mind inwards and I said to myself mentally, without actually framing the words: ‘Now that death has come; what does it mean? What is it that is dying? This body dies . . . But with the death of the body am I dead? Is the body I? . . . The body dies but the Spirit that transcends it cannot be touched by death. That means I am the deathless Spirit.’ All this was not dull thought; it flashed through me vividly as living truth which I perceived directly. . . From that moment onwards the ‘I’ or Self focused attention on itself by a powerful fascination. Fear of death had vanished once and for all. Absorption in the Self continued unbroken from that time on.”

Shortly after that experience, Bhagavan left for the holy hill of Arunachala and spent the next 53 years in that vicinity.

In those years, people often asked him questions about death.

Here, as recorded in the book  “Talks with Sri Ramana Maharshi”, are a few words he spoke, from the depth of his experience, on death and dying.

MOURNING IS NOT the index of true love. It betrays love of the object, of its shape only. That is not love. True love is shown by the certainty that the object of love is in the Self and that it can never become non-existent. There will be no pain if the physical outlook is given up and if the person exists as the Self.

There is no death nor birth. That which is born is only the body. The body is the creation of the ego. But the ego is not ordinarily perceived without the body. It is always identified with the body.

If a man considers he is born he cannot avoid the fear of death. Let him find out if he has been born or if the Self has any birth. He will discover that the Self always exists, that the body which is born resolves itself into thought and that the emergence of thought is the root of all mischief.

Find where from thoughts emerge. Then you will abide in the ever-present inmost Self and be free from the idea of birth or the fear of death.

Recall the state of sleep. Were you aware of anything happening? If the son or the world be real, should they not be present with you in sleep?

You cannot deny your existence in sleep. Nor can you deny you were happy then. You are now the same person speaking and raising doubts. You are not happy according to you. But you were happy in sleep. What has transpired in the meantime that happiness of sleep has broken down? It is the rise of the ego. That is the new arrival in the jagrat (waking) state. There was no ego in sleep.

The birth of the ego is called the birth of the person. There is no other kind of birth. Whatever is born, is bound to die. Kill the ego: there is no fear of recurring death for what is once dead. The Self remains even after the death of the ego. That is Bliss – that is immortality.

Training the mind helps one to bear sorrows and bereavements with courage. But the loss of one’s offspring is said to be the worst of all griefs. Still it is true, pain on such occasions can be assuaged by association with the wise.

Sri Ramana Maharshi


Source: “Talks with Ramana Maharshi”

Maharshi Newsletter May / Jun 1991, Vol.1 No.3

STOP! A Meditation by OSHO – Canadian Society of Questers

Editor’s Note:  This meditation by Osho comes from his famous,”Book of Secrets”, and was a wonderful tool to help me become more mindful.  I hope that you try this meditation and practice it for the next several weeks.  –  Judith

STOP! A Meditation by OSHO

Just as you have the impulse to do something, stop.

You can try it anywhere. You are taking your bath ― suddenly order yourself to “Stop!” and stop. Even if it is only for a single moment, you will feel a different phenomenon happening within you. You are thrown to the center and suddenly everything stops ― not only the body. When the body stops totally, your mind stops also.

When you say, “Stop!” do not breathe then. Let everything stop…no breathing, no body movement. For a single moment remain in this stop, and you will feel you have penetrated suddenly, at rocket speed, to the center. And even a glimpse is miraculous, revolutionary. It changes you, and by and by you can have more clear glimpses of the center. That is why inactivity is not to be practiced. Use it suddenly, when you are unaware.

For example, you were going to drink a glass of water. You have touched the water, the glass ― suddenly stop. Let the hand be there, let the desire to drink, the thirst be there inside, but you stop completely. The glass is outside, the thirst is inside; the hand is on the glass, the eyes are on the glass ― stop suddenly. No breathing, no movement, as if you have become dead. The very impulse, the thirst, will release energy, and that energy is used for going to the center. You will be thrown to the center. Why? Because any impulse is a movement outward. Energy is always in movement ― either going out or coming in. Energy can never be static.

Remember three things…. One, try it only when a real impulse is there. Secondly, do not think about stopping, just stop. And thirdly, wait! When you have stopped, no breathing, no movement ― wait and see what happens. When I say stop, it means stop totally, fully. Nothing is moving, as if the whole time has stopped. There is no movement ― simply you are! In that simple existence, suddenly the center explodes.

~~~Osho: Excerpted from The Book of Secrets

The Unknowable Self – Osho – Sat Sangha Salon

The deepest mystery of existence is the phenomenon of knowledge. You can know everything except your own self. The knower cannot be known because to know something means to reduce it to an object. The very process of knowledge depends on duality. I can know you because I am here, inside, and you are there, outside. You become an object. But I cannot know my self because I cannot make my self an object. I cannot encounter my self in any objective way. I cannot put my self in front of me. And if I could put my self in front of me then that which is put in front of me would not be my self. How can that which can be put in front of me be my self? Really, the inner one which will look at it will remain my self.

Self is subjective and this subjectivity cannot be made objective. Hence, the paradox: that which knows all cannot know itself; that which is the source of all knowledge remains unknowable. If you can understand this, then this sutra will reveal much. This is one of the most profound sutras. It goes deeper than all that the mystics have said. It says self-knowledge is impossible. You have heard, it has been preached, it has been told everywhere, “Know thyself.” But how can you know your self?  You can know everything other than you. One point will always remain unknown, unknowable. That point is you.

The word self-knowledge is not good at all. Knowledge of the self is not possible. But this may create a deep pessimism in you. If knowledge of the self is not possible, then the whole of religion becomes absurd because this is what religion is meant to do – to give you self-knowledge. Then there must be some other meaning to the word self-knowledge. Then there must be something, a hidden dimension, through which you can know the self and still not make it an object. Knowledge must be possible in an altogether different sense.

In the world, whatsoever we know is objective and the subject remains unknowable, the knower remains unknowable. But can this knower be known? This is the basic question, the basic problem. If there is only one way of knowing – that is objective knowledge – then it cannot be known. Hence, all the scientific thinkers will deny that the self exists. Their denial is meaningful. All those who are trained to think in terms of object, of objectivity, they will say there is no self.

Their saying this means that they cannot conceive of another type of knowing. They think that there is only one type of knowing and that is objective. The self cannot be made objective; hence, it cannot be known. And that which cannot be known cannot be said to exist. How can you say that it exists? The moment you say that it exists you have said that you have known it. You cannot assert its existence. If it is not known, not only not known but also unknowable, then how can you say that it exists?

Scientists go on saying that there is no self, that man is a mechanism and the consciousness that appears is just an epiphenomenon, a by-product. They say that there is no self, there is no center – that the consciousness comes into existence just through chemical phenomena and when the body withers away, consciousness disappears.

So for science, death is total death; nothing remains after it. Consciousness is not substantial; it is a by-product. It cannot exist without the body. It is part of the body, just a combination of many material things. It comes into being; it is not elementary. It is a compound, a combination, a synthesis, something which depends on other things. There is no self. Science says there is no self because the self cannot be known.

The very word science means knowledge. And if something is unknowable, science will not approve of it, science will not agree to it. Science means that which can be known. Only then science is not mystical. It cannot fall into absurdities. For science, the very word self-knowledge is absurd. But still, religion is meaningful because there is another dimension of knowing.

Try to understand that dimension of knowing where the known is not reduced to an object. For instance, if a lamp is burning in a dark room, everything in the room is lighted, is known through the light of the lamp. But the lamp is also known by its own light. Everything else – chairs, furniture, the walls, paintings on the walls – they are known through the light. But through what is the light itself known?

The light is self-enlightening: just by its presence it reveals others and it reveals itself also. But these two revelations are different. When the chair is known through the light, the chair is an object. The light falls on it and if the light disappears the chair cannot be known. The knowledge of the chair depends on the light but the knowledge of the light itself doesn’t depend on the chair. If you remove everything the light will still be light. There will be nothing to reveal but it will go on revealing itself. The revelation of the light is self-revelation.

Similar is the case with the inner phenomenon, the inner self. Everything is known through it but it itself is known not by anything else – it is a self-revealing phenomenon. It reveals itself. Self-knowledge doesn’t mean that the self is known by someone else because then the someone else will be the self. So whatsoever is known in an objective way cannot be the self. Always the knower will be the self. But how can this self be known? The self is a self-evident, self-revealing phenomenon; nothing else is needed to know it. You need not reduce it to an object.

Really, when all objects are removed from the mind, when all the furniture is removed from the mind, suddenly the self reveals itself. It is self-revealing. Really, that is the difference between matter and consciousness: matter is not self-revealing and consciousness is self-revealing; matter has to be known by someone else and consciousness knows itself. That is the basic difference between matter and consciousness. There are trees but if there is no conscious being they cannot be revealed; they need someone’s consciousness so that they can be revealed.

There are rocks, beautiful rocks, but if there is no consciousness they will not be beautiful because then no one will become aware that they are there. Their existence will be mute. Even those rocks will not be able to know that they exist. Existence will be there but there will be no revelation of it.

A small child comes playing near the rock: suddenly the rock is revealed. Now it is not a mute existence. Through the child the rock has become assertive. Now the tree is revealed. Now everything around the child becomes alive in a new meaning. The child has become a source of revelation. Everything around him becomes alive. Hence, the deeper your consciousness, the deeper you reveal existence.

When a buddha is born the whole existence celebrates in him because of such a deep consciousness. All that is hidden in matter becomes manifest. It was never known before. Just by the presence of an enlightened person, the whole existence around him is enlightened. Everything becomes alive, feels through him. Consciousness reveals others, but there is no need to reveal it for another consciousness. It is self-revelatory.

Take it from another angle: everything needs proof because everything can be doubted. But you cannot doubt the self; therefore the self never needs any proof. Can you doubt the self? One of the great Western thinkers, Descartes, used doubt as a method to know. He started his journey of knowledge through doubt – very penetrating doubt. He decided that he would doubt everything unless he stumbled upon a fact which could not be doubted. And unless there is a basic fact which cannot be doubted, you cannot build the palace of knowledge because there is no foundation stone to make it. If everything can be doubted and has to be proved, then the whole edifice is just logical. Something deep down must be indubitable, which does not need any proof.

God is not indubitable. Remember this: God is not indubitable. He can be doubted – not only doubted, he can be disproved. And really, when someone doubts God you cannot prove his existence. You can only convince those who are already convinced, but you cannot convert a new man; that is impossible. Not a single atheist can be converted because he needs proof and you cannot prove God.

God is not indubitable. He can be doubted, rejected. The whole hypothesis can be said to be false. There is no proof that can help. So Descartes goes on discussing, inquiring, and he says that unless he comes to a point, to something in existence that is indubitable…. Not that it can be proved – no. Rather, it cannot be doubted. And ultimately he comes to the self and says that the self is a greater reality than God. It is, because the self cannot be doubted. Can you doubt it? Even to doubt it you will have to have it.

For example, if you are in the house and someone comes and asks whether you are in the house or not and you say, “I am not,” the very fact that you say “I am not” will prove that you are there. You cannot deny yourself. The very fact that you say, “I am not” shows that you are there. The denial becomes the proof. There is no need not to affirm it; even denial becomes the proof. When even denial is a proof, the fact is indubitable. How can you doubt it?

You cannot say, “I do not know whether I am or not” – or can you? Even to be in such confusion, you need to be there. How can there be confusion without you? You cannot say, ”I don’t believe that I am,” because even not to believe, someone is needed to be there. There is no way to deny that you exist, that the I exists.

This self is the only indubitable fact in the world; everything else has been doubted. There have been skeptics who have doubted everything, even ordinary things of which you cannot conceive how they can be doubted. You are here but the English philosopher Berkeley says, “I cannot believe that you are here. You may be just a dream. And there is no way to prove that you are not a dream, because when I dream, I dream of people such as you.” And this is one of the essential qualities of a dream: in a dream the dream appears real.

So if you are appearing real, Berkeley says that does not prove anything, because in every dream the dream appears real. Can you doubt while you are dreaming? You cannot: the dream appears real. Even a very absurd dream appears real. It is just illogical, irrelevant, but still it appears real while it is there. So Berkeley says that there is no way to prove whether you are real or not. You can be doubted, everything can be doubted.

One of the greatest Indian mystics, Nagarjuna, has doubted everything – EVERYTHING! He says nothing is real because everything can be doubted. But there is only one point which he goes on avoiding: he never talks about the self because then his whole edifice, his whole philosophy, would fall down – because that cannot be doubted. It can be asked of Nagarjuna, ”Okay! The whole world is illusory and everything can be doubted, but who is this doubter? Do you doubt it – this doubter who denies the whole world?” The self is indubitable because it is self-evident. No proof is needed, no argument is needed. It is self-evident.

Mahavira denied God: he said there is no God. But he couldn’t say there is no self. Then the very self became divine for him. He said, “Only the self is God.” And that is true: in you, the self is the nearest thing to divine existence. That is why it cannot be doubted. It is self-evident, self-revealing, self-enlightening.

This is the second way of knowing. The scientific way is to know a thing as an object. The religious way is to know the subject as the subject. In a scientific way, knowledge has three parts: the knower, the known and the knowledge. The knowledge is just a bridge between the knower and the known. But the religious knowing does not have three parts. The knower is the known and the knower is the knowledge. This knowing is not divided into three. It is one, it is undivided.

-Osho

Excerpted from The Supreme Doctrine, Chapter 4.

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

An audio file of this discourse can be downloaded from Osho.com, or you can read the entire book online at the Osho Library.

Both audio and pdf files can be downloaded from Osho World.

Subhash Ghai to produce Osho biopic with Navala Productions

By: Express Web Desk |

osho biopic by subhash ghai Subhash Ghai’s Osho biopic will cast its main characters within the next month.

Subhash Ghai is all set to produce a biopic on controversial godman Osho in collaboration with Rome based production company Navala Productions, reported Variety. The project is tentatively titled Osho: Lord of the Full Moon and was announced yesterday at the Cannes Film Festival. Osho, also called Rajneesh and Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh, was recently the subject of Netflix’s critically acclaimed six-part documentary Wild Wild Country.

According to Variety, Lakshen Sucameli will direct the biopic from a screenplay by Sucameli and Kamlesh Pandey. Casting and international distributor names will be announced soon. Fabio Cianchetti, known for Eva Greene starrer The Dreamers, is the makers’ choice for director of photography.

Osho: Lord of the Full Moon will begin from the time of Indian independence. Apart from Osho, there would be another main character, a female journalist who puts her career in danger when she tries to investigate if the Guru is a fraud or a genius like his fans believed.

Osho died in 1990 but has been a contentious figure in popular imagination especially in the United States, where he was active in the first half of the 1980s. It was this relatively short duration of his life that became the most well-known because of the utopian Oregon community he established. That community was called Rajneeshpuram and was populated by Rajneeshees, as his devotees were called.

The establishment of Rajneeshpuram was protested by the locals. The tensions finally culminated in 1984 when Rajneeshees decided they were few in number and could not hope to win in the upcoming Wasco County elections. They allegedly indulged in bioterror when they poisoned half the voters by pouring salmonella-laced liquid on food items. Osho’s most trusted follower Ma Sheela pleaded guilty in 1985. US authorities also discovered evidence of the largest wire-tapping and bugging operation.

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The Leshan Giant Buddha: Largest Stone Buddha in the World

Not far from the city of Chengdu in Sichuan Province, China, sits the Leshan Giant Buddha statue. Carved into the side of Mt. Lingyun, the colossal statue is over 1,300-years-old and is considered to be the largest stone Buddha in the world, and by far the tallest pre-modern statue. The site attracts millions of people every year, including Buddhist pilgrims, making it something of a sacred destination and an ancient wonder of the world.

A statue honoring Maitreya

The Leshan Giant Buddha statue (also known as Dafo), is located to the east of Leshan City and sits at the junction of three rivers; the Min River, Qingyi River, and Dadu River.  It faces the sacred Mount Emei with the rivers flowing below its feet and depicts a stout, smiling monk, calmly sitting, resting his hands upon his knees with heavy-lidded eyes gazing across the river. The statue is believed to be Maitreya, a Buddha and disciple of Sakyamuni, who is thought to have been the founder of Buddhism, symbolizing brightness and happiness.

Worshiping Maitreya was especially popular between the 4th and 7th Centuries.  Today, images of him can still be found in many Buddhist temples throughout China and the Leshan statue is considered the most inspiring of them all.

The Paradise of Maitreya, Zhu Haogu and Zhang Boyuan, 1320 ( )

The architecture of the Leshan Giant Buddha

The appeal of the Buddha lies not only in its size but in its architectural craftsmanship.  The entire statue is made of stone, except for the ears which were crafted out of wood, then affixed, and covered with clay. The Buddha’s hair is arranged in special spiraled curls with 1,021 twists that have been skillfully embedded in the head.

The statue is ten stories high, and if the statue stood upright, it would be almost eye to eye with the Statue of Liberty. The Buddha is so enormous that it is alleged that 100 monks could sit on one foot. Measuring 71 meters tall (233 feet), the statue has a symmetrical posture, creating a gracefully relaxed image. Its head is 15 meters (50 feet) high, its shoulders 28 meters (92 feet) wide, and its smallest toenail can accommodate a seated person.  Each eyebrow alone is 5.5 meters (18 feet) while its nose is 6 meters (20 feet) long. A large pair of ears, measuring seven meters (23 feet), is capable of holding two people inside.

The ingenious system of water drainage

Several drainage passages hidden inside the Buddha’s hair, collar, chest, and back of the ears, have prevented the statue from serious erosion and weathering over the millennia. The drainage system of the Giant Buddha is a complex system made up of hidden gutters and channels, which carry away rainwater and keep the inner parts dry. This is why the great Buddha has survived intact up until modern times. Compared to when it was initially completed, the statue looks quite different from how it looks today. It once sat in a grand 13-story wooden pavilion which protected the carving from erosion. However, the pavilion was eventually destroyed at the end of the Ming Dynasty, exposing the statue to the elements.

The Origins of Dafo

The Leshan Giant Buddha statue is said to have been built to calm the turbulent waters that plagued passing boats and killed many people each year. So, in the Tang Dynasty, a monk named Hai Tong, decided to carve a giant statue beside the river, hoping it would appease the river gods and save more local people’s lives. With this belief, the Hai Tong Monk begged for 20 years to acquire enough funds to begin his work.  According to legend, when some local government officials wanted to get large amounts of money from Hai Tong, he said they could have his eyeball but not the money raised for the Buddha statue. When government funding for the project was threatened, the monk is said to have gouged out his own eyes to show his sincerity and devotion to the cause. The officials were scared away, and Hai Tong saved the money and started the project in 713 AD. The project was half finished when he passed away and two of his disciples were left to continue the work. The project was finally completed 90 years later by the local governor in 803 AD. Since so much stone was removed from the cliff face and deposited into the river below during the construction, the currents of the rivers were, in fact, altered by the statue, making the waters safe for passing ships.

The Leshan Giant Buddha: A Museum of Buddhist Carvings

As the biggest carved stone Buddha in the world, Dafo is featured in Chinese poetry, song and story. For the ancient Chinese, building a statue of this size and stature was a way of thanking their gods. Even after its completion, people continued to carve Buddhas, small ones, all around this massive statue. On the cliffs beside the Giant Buddha, there are two carved stone warriors in battle robes, holding a halberd (a combined spear and battle-ax).  Besides the Giant Buddha, are thousands of other carved Buddhas, making the mountain a museum of Buddhist carvings. Han Dynasty cliff tombs have also been found at the site and there is an onsite temple and shrine dedicated to Hai Tong near the Buddha. Mortuary artifacts have been found here as well making this area particularly important for archaeologists.

UNESCO grants Dafo World Heritage Status

Today, erosion is the biggest threat to the Leshan Giant Buddha’s survival. The statue was nearly destroyed by the erosion of wind and rain before 1963, when the Chinese government began repair work and protection. In 1996, the World Heritage Committee of UNESCO inscribed the Mount Emei Scenic area and the Leshan Giant Buddha Scenic Area on their World Heritage List as a mixed cultural and natural property of the world. Since 2001, it has been rumored that the equivalent of over 40 million U.S. dollars has been spent to keep it intact.

Crowds Flock to the Giant Buddha

At the start of the Lunar New Year, tens of thousands of Chinese people flock to the Leshan Giant Buddha to pay their respects and pray for good fortune. The queues that slowly creep up the 250 steps to the top of the Buddha’s head can take hours, and upon reaching the top, it is almost impossible to move as each person tries to get a closer look at the Buddha. Others opt for a boat ride to see the Buddha, crowding the waters, as everyone wants their chance to burn some incense and hope the Buddha will grant them good luck in the year ahead. 

Top Image: Leshan Giant Buddha is the world’s largest stone-carved Buddha ( Wikimedia Commons )

Source

https://www.ancient-origins.net/ancient-places-asia/leshan-giant-buddha-largest-stone-buddha-world-003398?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+AncientOrigins+%28Ancient+Origins%29

Osho loves to go fast


Another excerpt from Deva Peter’s successful book, ’93 Rolls-Royces’.

Being with Osho on the ride is an example of my total trust in him. Much of the ride takes place on narrow, two-lane, low-speed-limit mountain roads. Osho loves to go fast and often crosses into the opposite lane, passing the driver in front of him, going around blind curves.

I make the conscious choice to follow him no matter what; to trust his knowing whether or not it is safe to pass. To trust whether he can sense whether another vehicle is coming the other way on the two-lane road. Often he is not able to physically see what is around the bend.

Approaching many of the blind curves, he does not pass – and there would often be a car coming the other way.

For me, being with Osho is always about the teaching, rather than the event itself. I am aware that it doesn’t really have to do with us being out there driving like crazies. It’s a teaching in trusting my inner knowing, regardless of the circumstances. The Master Sosan says, “Stop talking and thinking and there is nothing you will not be able to know.”

After leaving the Ranch, Osho takes the two-lane highway to the nearby town of Madras. On that road, he can really push the Rolls to the max. At one point we had a communication code between his car and the chase car using CB radios. I once got into trouble because I couldn’t use the existing code we had developed for telling him how fast he was going. Why? Because he was going faster than the code allowed – it was over 85, for sure.

I think the speedometer on the GMC only went to 85 in those days. He was burying the speedometer on the Rolls and I couldn’t say how fast he was going. So I said that over the air and got into hot water.

On another ride, I’ve got Harry (a cop with “real world” experience) in the car with me. He has a speed gun aimed on the Rolls to measure Osho’s speed, but throws it in the back seat, saying, “It’s the wrong instrument” for this job. I love Harry – a very cool guy.

One time the trunk opens on the ride. Osho stops at a stop sign and the trunk lid is bobbing up and down. I am in the chase car, so I radio ahead and say, “Wait there for a minute. I’m going to have to come up and close the trunk.”

The reason the trunk is open is because the battery is in the trunk. With so many Rollses, each car sits for quite a while before it comes up in the rotation. So, Avesh and Anandadas need to recharge the battery before a car is used. When they serviced the battery that day, they forgot to close the trunk lid securely. That’s why it’s bobbing up and down.

Only after the Ranch do I learn that the battery put in the cars at the factory is a “slave battery.” It’s the dealer’s responsibility to put a larger amperage battery in before delivery to the customer. For some reason – maybe because the Ranch wants the cars so quickly – that upgrade never happens.

Not only does the battery need to be charged from sitting, but it’s so small it requires constant recharging by the alternator. The alternator does not operate when the car is idling at low rpm, like when Osho drives slowly, greeting his disciples along the road. Occasionally, especially during the summer when Osho uses the air conditioning, the car stalls.

That happens during one summer festival, when there are thousands of visitors greeting Osho along the side of the road during his drive-by. I am up at the garages when the call comes in asking me to bring Osho another car. The car’s battery has died!

When I arrive on the scene, Osho emerges from his car and stands among a throng of his disciples, grinning, his arms raised, encouraging his people to continue singing and dancing. Talk about a security nightmare! Finally he makes his way to the replacement car and continues along his way.

Avesh deals with the problem by setting the idle higher. However, that means Osho has to ride his brakes, causing them to squeak. The easy solution would be to requisition larger batteries for the cars. It doesn’t happen. Why? I dunno. It’s not my business.

An even more frightening incident happens one day when Osho is in Madras. This time, Anandadas is in the chase car when Osho pulls away from the curb after stopping to have a snack in his car. He darts from his parking space across two lanes into traffic.

Because Anandadas can’t get behind him fast enough, a pickup truck pulls in behind Osho and has to slam on his brakes to avoid ass-ending the Rolls. Can you imagine if Osho had gotten ass-ended?

Osho realizes how scary that incident has been for Anandadas. Back at the Ranch, Osho asks Avesh and me to meet with him in his room. He gives us a bottle of wine to give to Anandadas along with a message for him “not to worry” about Osho getting hurt on the ride.

Then Osho relates a story about a time when he was in India and his driver went off the road and the car rolled onto its side. Osho was in the back seat and could smell gasoline. He nudged the driver and told him to get out of the car, saying, “The car’s going to explode.” The driver said, “I can’t. I’m dead!” Osho said, “You’re not dead. If you were dead, you wouldn’t be able to hear me!”

Finally, the driver got out and was able to help Osho out. Osho tells Avesh and me to “tell Anandadas, ‘If I was going to die in a car accident, I would have died then.’ So, not to worry about me on the ride.” To me, it’s another example of Osho’s profound compassion for a disciple.

On another occasion, on one of the back roads, I am the driver for the chase car and Bob, one of the original Ranch property managers, is riding with me. He is not armed. We are stopped by two carloads of goofy teenage kids, one in front of us, one behind us, and they slow down to the point Osho has to stop.

We are pinned in. They jeer and give him the finger. Just being goofs, but to me it is very disturbing, to say the least, that helpless kind of feeling. Osho doesn’t seem disturbed, but Vivek looks quite upset. We are helpless to do anything about it.

After about ten minutes or so, after blowing off steam, the teenagers pull away and let us move on. To me it is totally unacceptable to be in a situation like that. So I go to Vidya, complaining that the ride is unsafe and not properly equipped to deal with such an episode, or worse.

I go with a list of complaints and an ultimatum that I would quit unless they follow my recommendations, such as having an armed person on the ride, a camera with telephoto lens, binoculars. They don’t adopt my recommendations fast enough, plus nobody is taking my advice on things, so I quit the ride.

Later they do implement my recommendations, but they go totally overboard: to having three chase cars, to Osho being wired to a machine reading out his vital signs, to having a car with not only a doctor but also a lawyer. Three cars on the ride, one for security, one for medical, one for legal.

By that time I am long finished with the ride and just focused on my painting work. At first going on the ride was fun – like an escape from the Ranch. But eventually it got so intense that it wasn’t fun anymore. As time went on, and Osho’s safety was more threatened, I was glad to be done with it. I wasn’t on the ride more than ten times.

Anyway, by the end it is decided Osho won’t go outside the Ranch on his rides. Sannyasin crews develop the pine forest road for him, so our Master can speed around the Ranch without getting hassled!

After all is said and done, I like to think I have a positive impact on Osho’s safety on the ride, through my bitching and moaning. To say the least, I am really a pain in the ass to all the powers that be on the Ranch. This I know. The real issue is the safety of our Master. It is something of a miracle that he emerges from his driving adventures unscathed!

Read the review by Roshani: Appealing to the Eye and Easily Devoured!

Available to order via Peter – phaykus (at) outlook.com

Born in 1945, Deva Peter was raised in Chicago, Illinois, USA. He trained and worked as a professional auto mechanic, welder, boat builder and custom car painter. He took sannyas in Poona, in February 1981 and was invited to the Ranch that year. Osho’s Rolls-Royces were the most extraordinary custom paint jobs Peter completed. He currently enjoys retired life with Avalon (Ma Devagarbha) in Colorado, living close to their daughter, her husband, and two granddaughters, who are the light of his life. phaykus (at) outlook.com

The Essenes on Darkness – Osho Rajneesh

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​There has been one very old esoteric school known as the school of Essenes. Jesus was taught in that school; he belonged to the Essenes group. That Essenes group is the only group all over the world who thinks of God as absolute darkness. The Koran says God is light, the Upanishads say God is light, the Bible says God is light. The Essenes group is the only tradition in the world which says that God is absolute blackness, absolute darkness, just an infinite black night.

This is very beautiful; strange, but very beautiful — and very meaningful. You must understand the meaning, then this technique will be very helpful, because this is the technique used by the Essenes to enter darkness, to become one with it. Reflect. Why has God been symbolized everywhere as light? Not because God is light, but because man is afraid of darkness. This is human fear — we like light and we are afraid of darkness, so we cannot conceive God as darkness, as blackness. This is human conception. We conceive God as light because we are afraid of darkness. Our gods are created out of our fear. We give them shape and form. That shape and form is given by us — it shows something about us, not about our gods. They are our creations. We are afraid in darkness, so God is light. But these techniques belong to the other school.

Essenes say that God is darkness, and there is something in it. One thing: darkness is eternal. Light comes and goes and darkness remains. In the morning the sun will rise and there will be light; in the evening the sun will set and there will be darkness. For darkness nothing will rise — it is always there. It never rises and never sets. Light comes and goes; darkness remains. Light always has some source; darkness is without source. That which has some source cannot be infinite; only that which is sourceless can be infinite and eternal.

Light has a certain disturbance; that’s why you cannot sleep in light. It creates a tension. Darkness is relaxation, total relaxation. But why are we afraid of darkness? Because light appears to us as life — it is; and darkness appears to be death — it is. Life comes through light, and when you die it appears you have fallen into eternal darkness. That’s why we paint death as black, and black has become a color for mourning. God is light, and death is black. But these are our fears projected. Actually, darkness has infinity; light is limited. Darkness seems to be the womb out of which everything arises and into which everything falls.

Essenes took this standpoint. It is very beautiful and very helpful also, because if you can love darkness you will become unafraid of death. If you can enter into darkness — and you can enter only when there is no fear — you will achieve total relaxation. If you can become one with darkness, you are dissolved, it is a surrender. Now there is no fear, because if you have become one with darkness, you have become one with death. You cannot die now. You have become deathless. Darkness is deathless. Light is born and dies; darkness simply is. It is deathless.

Sathya Sai Baba Quotes – A Collection of 108 Quotes of Sri Sathya Sai Baba

Sathya Sai Baba (November 23, 1926 – April 24, 2011) was a Hindu Guru with a mass following of devotees in India and around the world. Sathya Sai Baba quotes are mainly from newspapers, videos, books and magazines. The 108 quotes have been collected over a period of 10 years.

Be Good
Do Good
See Good
This Is The Way To God

If there is righteousness in the heart, there will be beauty in the character.
If there is beauty in the character, there will be harmony in the home.
If there is harmony in the home, there will be order in the nation.
When there is order in the nation, there will be peace in the world.

It is because the doctrine of human unity based on the spiritual oneness of all beings is not propagated in the right manner that we have today many divisions leading to many conflicts.

A house must be built on solid foundations if it is to last. The same principle applies to man, otherwise he too will sink back into the soft ground and becomes swallowed up by the world of illusion.

Look out into the universe and contemplate the glory of God. Observe the stars, millions of them, twinkling in the night sky, all with a message of unity, part of the very nature of God.

Religions are many, but goal is one.
Jewels are many, but gold is one.
Stars are many, but sky is one.
Cows are many, but milk is one.
Beings are many, but breath is one.
Nations are many, but earth is one.
Flowers are many, but worship is one.

Conclusion – Behind the diverse names and forms, there is the universal life.

For everything there is reaction, resound and reflection in this Kali Age. When you speak softly and sweetly to others, you will receive the same in return. If you are rude to others, others will also be rude towards you. Every individual, irrespective of his age and country, must therefore speak softly and sweetly. Whether one is educated or illiterate, one must have humility.

All that you experience in this world is nothing but the reflection, reaction and resound of your own feelings. So, you should be good to everybody and work with the spirit of unity and love.

When the senses are allowed to have their way, all kinds of reactions occur. It is only when the sense are brought under unified control that the nature of Divinity can be comprehended.

Happiness is essential for God-realization. It is one of the big gateways to Divinity. If man is unhappy, this is not just a flaw. This is one of the most serious flaws! This is an obstacle on the way to self-realization!

In most cases people are unhappy because of worldly aspirations, attachments, and joys: they pay too much attention to the worldly.

In order to help one get rid of this flaw, it is necessary to point out how much serious this flaw is. One should realize that desires are never-ending like waves in the sea.

In many cases, the reason for people’s suffering is that only through suffering God can convince them of the necessity of turning inside, into the depth of the multidimensional structure of their organisms, of the necessity of self examination. Without this, such people will never get rid of suffering! God is inside, in the depth! He heals from there.

Those who seek bliss in the Atman should not run after the joys of sense objects.

Just as a body which has no breath is useless and begins to rot and stink, similarly life without the Truth is useless and becomes the stinking abode of strife and grief.

Believe that there is nothing greater than the Truth, nothing more precious, nothing sweeter, and nothing more lasting.

First give up the evil tendency to feel envious at the prosperity of others and the desire to harm them. Be happy that others are happy! Sympathize with those who are in adversity and wish for their prosperity. That is the means of cultivating love for God.

When the mind is motionless and silent, one can hear the voice of God. Anyone who is able to purify the mind from anxiety, agitations, and thoughts can attune themselves to the voice of God inside.

The main enemies of man, leading to accumulation of negative karma, are the wrongly directed mind and the uncontrollable emotional sphere with dominating egotistic or coarse emotions.

Man can overcome the obstacles of ego and anger by strengthening faith, by directing the mind toward Divinity, and by using spiritual practices, which, first of all, normalize the emotional sphere and help to learn how to control the mind and consciousness.

The most important spiritual practice is the search of one’s own imperfections and weaknesses, and making attempts on ridding oneself of them, becoming closer to the Perfection.

Like a bird that sees a lump of flesh in the far distance, but does not notice the net spread over it to catch it, man too sees but the charms of material objects; he does not notice the entanglements which they cause.

Man tries to map the craters and canyons and the volcanoes on the moon, but ignores the craters within his own heart; how then can he acquire peace?

Man undergoes enormous trouble to guard his wealth but does not spend an iota of energy to guard his inner consciousness.

Some people say that they are too weak to scale spiritual heights. But you have the strength to commit sins and do wrong actions. The strength required for good or bad actions is the same. In fact, it is more difficult to commit sin than to be good and meritorious.

Concentrate on developing the firm conviction that you are the Divine. With this conviction you can achieve anything. Give up the attachment to the body. Even scientists sometimes forget their body consciousness while absorbed in their experiments. If that is the case, why should the spiritually minded persons retain attachment to the body, which is made up of the five elements and is a container of all foul things.

Unless you give up, you cannot acquire – that is the rule of life. Even trivial things cannot be won without parting with something. One has to pay to secure the most precious of all gifts, the gift of the awareness of the Atma! To earn this, one has to give up sensual pleasures, but is this too big a price. In fact, what is renounced is not pleasure at all. It is fraught with pain too.

Any man, irrespective of age or abilities, who has faith and determination, can accomplish what he wants.

Try to know the truth. But do not waste your time in trying to understand some abstract concepts which you are unable to comprehend. Develop firm faith that God exists.

Most ailments can be treated by medicines. But most ailments in the world today have their origin in the mind. The aberrations of the mind set up reactions in the body and cause various diseases. The main cause of many human ailments is rooted in the mind.

Never forget God. Do not believe in the world, which is perpetually changing. Don’t fear death. If you learn to observe these three maxims, you can accomplish anything.

You can hear the footsteps of God when silence reigns in the mind.

I am you; you are ME. You are the waves; I am the ocean. Know this and be free, be divine.

Be Silent yourself, that will induce Silence in others.

Dedication ensures success; purifies inner vision and gives lasting joy.

When you feel you cannot do good, at least desist from doing evil.

For everything, there is reaction, resound and reflection in this Kali Age. When you speak softly and sweetly to others, you will receive the same in return. If you are rude to others, you will receive the same in return. If you are rude to others, others will also be rude towards you. Every individual irrespective of his age and country must therefore speak softly and sweetly.

Whether one is educated or illiterate, one must have humility.

All that you experience in this world is nothing but the reflection, reaction and resound of your own feelings. So, you should be good to every body and work with the spirit of unity and love.

When the senses are allowed to have their way all kinds of reactions occur. It is only when the senses are brought under unified control that the nature of divinity can be.

So long as one goes on multiplying his desire, he will continue to be in want.

When man controls his desires, man attains prosperity.

Greed makes a man unhappy and miserable. Only when greed and miserliness are given up can one have an enjoyable and peaceful life.

Greed yields only sorrow; contentment is best. There is no happiness greater than contentment.

Man is deluded by the trivial pleasures from mundane things and is filled with greed and lust. This is the main obstacle in the spiritual path.

Greed is the monstrous evil that drags man down.

You can hoodwink anyone, but not God. He is always watching you. He is the eternal witness. He is present in you, just as the power of vision resides in your eye. Not even a blade of grass can move without His Will.
God asks for neither hope nor despair. They are subject to relativity. Universal Being is beyond both hope and despair, both certainty and doubt. It knows no lingering in conclusions. It is every flowing, in all directions, and in none of them.
Do not get work done through cooks, servants, ayahs and others. You must not depend on others to do your work. Earning time for meditation through these servants is not a spiritual gain. Do all the household work as acts of worship for Him; that is more fruitful than hours of meditation, hours gained by entrusting this precious work to paid helpers.
Evil qualities and unrighteous conduct of man are responsible for the injustice, untruth, unrighteousness that prevail in the world today.

You have to develop virtues and follow the righteous path if you want to enjoy peace and happiness.
The pains and sorrows that come during one’s daily life must be forgotten and you must leave them behind. Only when you make an attempt to lead such a life will it become fruitful.

The senses are the villains. They instill the delusion that you are the body.

Mental agitation can be calmed by the thought that ‘this will not last.’

The human body is a prey to many ailments. Man regards all of them as bodily ailments. But not all of them are entirely related to the body. Purely bodily ailments can be treated by medicines. But most ailments in the world today have their origin in the mind. The aberrations of the mind set up reactions in the body and cause various diseases. The main cause of many human ailments is rooted in the mind.

Try to know the truth. But do not waste your time in trying to understand some abstract concepts which you are unable to comprehend.

Develop firm faith that God exists. Also have the faith that you are God. You cannot understand anything without developing faith. First and foremost, develop faith in the concept of “I.” Only then you can understand what is meant by ‘you.’ Without knowing “I”, how can you know ‘you’?

People think that they enjoy sense objects. But in fact, objects enjoy them. Indulging in pleasures of the senses turns people into weaklings.
Worldly enjoyments are not permanent.

You may have worldly enjoyments but you should always have God as your aim and goal of life.

Lead your life with divine thoughts. When you live like that, you achieve victory in all of life’s endeavors.

What to keep out for a happy life? – Sathya Sai Baba Answers

Be always watchful against the following sins:

  1. Speaking falsehood
  2. Speaking ill of others
  3. Backbiting
  4. Talking too much
  5. Killing
  6. Adultery
  7. Theft
  8. Drinking intoxicants
  9. Eating flesh
  10. Sexual carvings
  11. Anger
  12. Greed
  13. Earthly attachments
  14. Impatience
  15. Hatred
  16. Egoism
  17. Pride
As told by Sathya Sai Baba

Sathya Sai Baba Thoughts on Money

Man has been enslaved by money. He lives a superficial, hollow and artificial life. This is indeed a real pity. Man should seek to possess only as much as is most essential for his living.

The quantity of riches one must own can be compared to the shoes one wears: if too small, they cause pain; if too big, they are hindrance while walking.

Money, too, has to be with us only just enough for a life of physical and mental comfort.

When we have more, it breeds pride, sloth and contempt for others.

In pursuit of money, man descends to the lowest level of consciousness.

Money is of the nature of manure. Piled up in one place, it pollutes the air. Spread it wide, scatter it over fields, and it rewards you with a bumper harvest. So, too, when money is spent in all the four quarters for promoting good works, it yields contentment and happiness in plenty.

Sathya Sai Baba Thoughts on Atma

Realize that the Atma is your life. Everyone of you is endowed with divine energy. But you are misusing it. Your youth is in your hands. Your life-force is in your hands. You are not the body; you are the life force. Body is meant to serve as an instrument in your quest for truth. The same atma is present in all.

Here you see a silver tumbler. There is water in it. The tumbler is the basis of water, and silver is the basis of tumbler. But divinity is the basis for everything. Divinity does not comprise of any material. Similarly the Atma is not composed of any material. If you look at the Atma as material, it will appear to you as material. Hence, change your vision. Do not limit yourself to materials only.

The non-dual principle of Atma Tattwa immanent in the body is eternal and transcendental. It is omnipresent. It has no name or form. How can one give a name to such an all-pervading Atma Tattwa? It is only a futile exercise. Develop firm faith in the omnipresent Atma Tattwa. That faith is awareness…First and foremost, turn your vision inward and contemplate on the Atma Tattwa present in you. This Atma Tattwa can be realized only by constant Sadhana. It is only after realizing this Atma Tattwa can one deliberate on it.

Source

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We Meet Monsieur Gurdjieff – Motus Mentis

I’ve alluded rather obliquely in some of my posts to various schools of inner development, without going into a lot of detail. I’d like to begin to talk about one such system with which I have had various levels of contact all of my life. The ideas in question are those brought to the West by the Greek/Armenian teacher G.I. Gurdjieff.

Here is a very brief synopsis of G.’s life, from the Gurdjieff Foundation of New York’s website:

G.I. Gurdjieff was born in Alexandropol, close to the frontiers of Russia and Turkey, circa 1866. Finding that neither science nor religion answered his questions about the meaning of man’s life, he became convinced that an ancient knowledge must exist and could still be found on Earth. After twenty years of search in remote parts of Central Asia and the Near East, he returned to Russia in 1912. Settling near Paris in 1922, he established the Institute for the Harmonious Development of Man at Fontainebleau. In 1924, he made the first of a series of visits to America. In 1929, he moved from Fontainebleau to Paris where he continued writing and working with a small number of students until his death in 1949.

I first noticed the name when I was a child, on the spines of some rather musty old books in my father’s study.

My father grew up in London, and after a stint as a medic in the Royal Navy during the Second World War returned to London to continue his medical education at Imperial College and St. George’s Hospital. There he became acquainted with a number of intellectually curious physicians and scientists, among them one Dr. Kenneth Walker. Dr. Walker was involved with a group that met on occasion to discuss some rather unusual ideas about human psychology and development, and invited my father to join him.

At this time M. Gurdjieff, who had settled in France in the 1920s, and who rode out the war in Paris, was near the end of his life. But he still worked with small groups in Paris, and occasionally crossed the Channel to London as well. It was one of these meetings that my father was invited to attend.

I wish to be clear that my father is not a credulous or superstitious man, and as a scientist he has a skeptical and questioning mind. But he sensed at once that there was something quite extraordinary about Gurdjieff, and said that he immediately formed the same impression that so many others have reported: that when you met him he looked right through you, that one felt one had no secrets in his presence.

My father was intrigued by both the remarkable personality of the man himself and by the system of ideas and methods he presented, and became a regular member of the London groups. He also traveled to Paris on several occasions to meet and work with groups there, and assisted Dr. Walker as he treated Gurdjieff in his final illness.

Much of the Gurdjieff work involves music, movement, and the effect of impressions of various sorts on the human organism. One of the earliest and most vivid experiences my father recalls from the London meetings was of Gurdjieff making a demonstration of the effects of musical tones.

For this meeting, which was held in a London townhouse, Gurdjieff had asked his hosts if he might tune the piano in a special way. Having spent the time to adjust it to his liking, he asked the group to gather round. He explained that the tempered scale used in Western music was a compromise, and that although such a tuning made it possible to play in many keys, and to move between keys on the same instrument, certain essential properties of musical vibration, known since ancient times, could not be achieved on an instrument tuned in this way. So he had adjusted the piano in such a way as to make these effects possible.

He asked for a small glass of water, and placed it on the piano. He then began to play an odd melody, punctuated by loud, sharp chords. All present later described the effect of these chords in the same way – as being similar to an electric shock passing though their bodies. It was as if the music was causing a direct, objective effect in each of them, and my father said the experience was quite unlike anything he had ever encountered before.

When he had finished playing, M. Gurdjieff raised the glass of water. It was frozen.

There is a very great deal I would like to say about all of this, but I must be very, very careful to say it all in the right way, and not to overreach myself to the detriment of all. Gurdjieff’s system is not a small topic, worthy of a diverting post or two, but is rather an ancient, immense and interconnected web of ideas, some very difficult. I won’t be rushing through it, and there may be long stretches between posts, but I will write what I can as I feel I am able.

Papaji & Verse 1 of DaoDeJing – PriorToConsciousness 不生不灭

From – The Truth Is ~ Papaji

Yet there is a sacred secret beyond even this. This sacred secret must be asked for in secret and followed sacredly.

Constantly go to the Source. Don’t even land in the Source, but forever go deeper. Still beyond It Is.

You have to take the last half step from Peace-Awareness-Bliss into the Mystery beyond the mind.

Do you still progress in this final stage of evolution where you are now?

This is a very good question. Many people will say that this is the final stage and that everything is finished with no more progress or evolution to experience. This is what everybody will say. I still have something more to do in this direction which is not mentioned in any book. There is no end to understanding. As long as there is very pure intention there is still something to be done after complete and final Realization.

That I don’t speak of and I have never spoken. It is not mentioned in any book. Those who know it cannot express it because it is beyond intellectual grasp. I want to tell what it is.

It is a sacred secret, as Krishna says to Arjuna, “The Knowledge I give you is sacred Knowledge, it is not to be retold to anyone.” I know a Mystery so rare and sacred and secret. It has no oral description, but yet I will “tell” it to some people that I like.

There are some people in the West. I am not hiding this, it is just that I cannot speak it. Perhaps the time will come when I speak. It is very subtle and can only be understood by the supreme intellect. Even if I did speak it nobody would understand. It is not what is transmitted by look, touch or word. It is something beyond that.

Could you speak something of the Mystery?

If I could speak of the Mystery how could it be a Mystery? It could be a history. You can speak about history, not about the Mystery. Nobody knows what this Wisdom is. Those who go there never return.

It seems like self and Being rise from Mystery. Everything arises from the Mystery so you are not describing Mystery, but the Self.

Everything that can be seen and felt has for its origin Mystery. Mystery cannot be seen.

Mystery is beyond Self?

Yes.

Is creation arising due to Self exploring the Mystery within Self?

There is no inside or outside for the Mystery. Inside and outside arises from thought.

Where does this thought arise from?

Go toward where the thought rises from, this is a mysterious place where no one has touched and where no one can speak about. Even gods and existence comes from the Mystery. Nobody knows that the Mystery is behind creation and the creator. Maybe it is only a mystery that we even see a creation and it may not even be there at all because it is mysterious.

Just as you dream you see so many things like rivers and forests, men, animals and birds, but when you wake up nothing is there, nor was it ever. So it was a mystery that in your short nap you see so many things. Then you wake up and nothing is there.

When you wake up you realize that nothing has ever existed.

To see the Mystery you must wake up from the sleep of forms and names. If you don’t see any forms or names then that is not describable.

DaoDeJing Verse 1

Sentence 1: 道可道,非常道。名可名,非常名。

The arbitrarily named Dao (see verse 25) is already perfectly so even before language-ing about it. It is the human dilemma to language and label, in other words to think or to thing, which is the same. This turns out to be a blessed curse, so to speak. (Notice that language-ing is happening now) So the human talks about the unspeakable Dao and names the unname-able, quite helplessly身不由己;that’s the human condition.

Sentence 2: 无,名天地之始。有,名万物之母。

The label – 无, nothingness or no-thingness, names into existence root duality of heaven & earth. The label – 有,somethingness names and births into existence ten thousand things (namarupa).

Sentence 3: 故常无,欲以观其秒。故常有,欲以观其缴。

When attention abides in nothingness, the original unbound mystery is perceived. When attention abides in somethingness, then only demarcated mystery is perceived. In other words the original complete wholeness is dropped from view.

Sentence 4: 此两者,同出而异名,同谓之玄。

This YinYang couple arise mutually yet are given different names. Seen together they secretly point to the original mystery prior to labeling.

Sentence 5:玄之又玄,众妙之门。

Outwardly layers of relative mysteries pile upon one another. And yet it is also the door/key/pointer inwardly back to the original mysterious perfection.

 

A Whole Throbbing – Osho – Sat Sangha Salon

The world is there because of you – you create it, you are a creator. Every single being creates a world around himself, it depends on his mind. The mind may be illusory, but it is creative – it creates dreams. And it is up to you to create a hell or heaven.

If you leave this world you will not be able to leave it. Wherever you go you will create the same world again, because the world is constantly coming out of you just as leaves are coming out of the tree.

You don’t live in the same world; you cannot because you don’t have similar minds. Just by the side of you somebody may be living in heaven, and you may be living in hell – and you feel that you are living in the same world? How can you live in the same world when minds differ?

So the first thing to be understood is that you cannot leave the world unless the mind disappears. They are related, they depend on each other, they make a vicious circle. If the mind is there… And a mind is always a particular mind. When the mind is no more a particular mind, when it becomes a Mind with a capital M it is no more mind, it has become consciousness. A mind is always a particular mind and it carries a particular aroma around it – that is your world.

The mind creates the world and then the world creates the mind, helps the mind to remain the same. This is the vicious circle. But the source is in the mind; the world is just a by-product. The mind is substantial; the world is just the shadow of it. And you cannot destroy the shadow, but everybody tries to destroy it.

If this wife doesn’t suit you, you think another wife will. You are trying to change the world, and you are the same. You will just turn the next wife into an exact replica of the old. You will again create, because the wife will be just a screen.

And you will be surprised: people who have married many times, their experience is really strange. A person who has been married ten times recognizes the fact that ”How does it happen? In such a wide and big world I always stumble upon the same type of woman? Even by accident it seems impossible! Again and again!”

The problem is not the woman, the problem is the mind. The mind is again attracted to the same type of woman, again creates the same relationship, again finds the same mess and the same hell.

And the same happens in everything you do. Do you think you will live happily in a palace? You are wrong! Who is going to live in the palace? You will live there. If you are not happy in your hut, you will not be happy in your palace. Who will live in the palace? Palaces don’t exist outside you.

If you can live happily in a hut, you can live happily in a palace, because you create the world around you. Otherwise, as the hut pinches you the palace will pinch – even more so because it is a bigger thing. It will be a hell, just the same – more decorated, but a decorated hell is not a heaven. And even if you are forcibly thrown into heaven you will try to find an exit, or you will create your hell there.

I have heard about one man, a great businessman, a dress manufacturer. He died. Somehow, by some technical mistake, he entered heaven. He met his old partner there. The old partner was as sad as he was on this earth. So the businessman said, “What does it mean? You are in heaven, and so unhappy?”

The partner said, “It is okay, but personally I prefer Miami.”

And the other also came to the same conclusion within days. They again became partners there, and they wanted to start a business firm to manufacture dresses.

The same is going to happen wherever you go, because you are the world. You create a world around you, then the world helps the mind which has created it. The son helps the father, the son helps the mother, your shadow helps the substance – then the mind is strengthened more, then again you create the same world on the same lines. From where to start a transformation? How to change?

If you look, the first look will say to change the world, because it is so apparent around you. Change it! And that’s what you have been doing for many lives: continuously changing the world, changing this and that, changing houses, bodies, wives, husbands, friends – changing, but never looking to the fact that you remain the same, so how can you change the world?

That’s why a false tradition of renunciation came into existence all over the world. Escape from the house and go to the monastery. Escape from the market, go to the Himalayas. Escape from the world! To the Himalayas you can go easily, but how can you escape from yourself? You will create the same world there – the same! It may be a miniature world, it may not be so vast, but you will do the same. You are the same – how can you do anything else?

Deeper insight reveals that: change the mind, then the world changes. Then wherever you are a different world is revealed. You go deeper, and then you understand that if you want to be really without the world around you…. Because howsoever beautiful the world is, sooner or later it will become a boredom and you will be fed up. Even if it is a heaven you will start longing for the hell, because the mind needs change. It cannot live in the eternal, it cannot live in the non-changing, because the mind hankers for some new curiosity, some new sensation, some new excitement. It is not possible for the mind to stop time and to remain timelessly.

That’s why the mind cannot live in the now, the here, because now is not a part of time. It never changes, it is eternal. You cannot say it is unchanging, it is not permanent, it eternal. It is simply as it is. Nothing happens there. It is emptiness.

Buddha has called it shunyata – absolutely empty. Nothing happens there, nobody comes, nobody goes. There is nobody, because if somebody is there then something or other will happen.

Mind cannot live in the eternal now. Mind wants change and goes on hoping, and goes on hoping against all hope. The whole situation is hopeless, but mind goes on hoping.

I have heard:

Mulla Nasruddin remained unemployed for many, many years because he wanted to be an actor and he had no talent. But every day, religiously, he would go to the agent. Hopefully he would knock at the door, enter the office, and inquire, “Has something happened? Am I booked somewhere?”

And the agent would say always the same: “I cannot do anything, nothing is possible.”

Days passed, weeks passed, then years passed and the Mulla’s knocking became a routine. Whatsoever the season, the climate, good or bad, but one thing was certain for the agent – that Mulla would come. And he would again ask hopefully, and the man would again say the same thing: “Nasruddin, I cannot do anything, nothing is possible.”

Then one day the knock was different, a little sad. And when Mulla came in, even the agent was surprised: “Why is he so sad?”

Mulla said, “Listen, for two weeks don’t book me anywhere because I’m going for a vacation.”

This is how mind functions – goes on hoping, not for many years; but for many lives! You knock on the same door with the same inquiry and desire, and it is always no. What have you gained through mind except nos?

Yes has never come that way, it cannot come. Mind is a futile effort. It is desert like, nothing grows on it, nothing can grow. But it goes on hoping. Even a desert dreams, and dreams of beautiful gardens, rivers flowing, brooks and waterfalls. Even a desert dreams… and that is the dream of the mind.

One has to be alert. There is no need to waste any more time – no need to knock on the agent’s door. Enough you have lived with the mind. Nothing have you achieved through it. Is it not the right time to be alert and aware?

Of course you have gathered many miseries and many hells – if you call them achievements then it is okay – anguish, frustration. And wherever you move with the mind something goes wrong, because mind is the mechanism of the wrong. You look: something goes wrong.

Mulla Nasruddin’s son was entered into the school. The teacher was talking about geography and she talked and explained the shape of the earth and everything. And then she asked Mulla Nasruddin’s son, “What is the shape of the earth?”

He remained silent, so just to provoke his answer she said, “Is it flat?”

The son said, “No.”

She became more hopeful; she said, “Then is it a globe, round-shaped?”

Nasruddin’s son said, “No.”

Then she was surprised. She said, “Only two are the possibilities: either it is flat or it is global, and you say no to both. So what is your idea?”

The son said, “My Dad said it is crooked!”

For the mind everything is crooked, not because everything is crooked – the way the mind looks, anything that penetrates the medium of the mind becomes crooked. Just as you put a straight thing into water, a straight staff, and suddenly you see the medium of the water has done something; it is no more straight. You bring it out of the water; it is again straight. Put it in again…

And you know that the staff remains straight even in water, but your eyes still say that it is not straight. A hundred times you can bring it out and put it in. Even if you know well that the staff remains straight, the medium will again give you the false information that it is no more straight.

You have known many, many times that the misery is created by the mind, but again you fall a victim. Mind creates misery. It cannot create anything else because it cannot encounter reality. It can only dream – that is the only capacity for the mind. It can only dream. And dreams cannot fulfill, because whenever they come against the reality they are shattered.

You live in a house of glass, you cannot face reality. Whenever reality comes your house is shattered, and many houses you have lived in are shattered. You carry their ruins in the mind, the anguish that resulted. And that has made you very sour, very bitter.

Taste anybody and you will taste him bitter. And that is the experience of others about you also:  everybody tastes bitter. Come closer and everything goes bitter; remain distant, everything looks beautiful. Come closer, everything goes bitter – because when you come closer, minds penetrate each other and everything is crooked, then nothing is straight.

This has to be realized as your experience, not as a theory from me or Sosan. Sosan can’t help, neither can I. It must become your own experienced phenomenon. Experienced, it becomes a truth – and then many things start changing, then you drop the mind.

And when the mind drops, all worlds disappear. When the mind drops, objects disappear; then they are no more objects. Then you don’t know where you end and where things start, then there are no boundaries. Boundaries disappear.

In the beginning you feel as if everything has gone blurred, but by and by you settle in the new phenomenon which is of no-mind. Then stars are there, but they are part of you, no more objects. Flowers and trees are there but they flower in you, no more outside. Then you live with the totality.

The barrier is broken – the barrier was your mind. Then for the first time there is no world, because world means the totality of objects. For the first time there is a universe, and universe means one. Remember the word ‘uni.’ This you call a universe? Wrongly. Don’t call it a universe, for you it is a multiverse. Many worlds, no more one, it is not yet.

But when the mind drops, worlds disappear. There are no objects. Boundaries mingle and meet into each other. The tree becomes the rock, the rock becomes the sun, the sun becomes the star, the star becomes the woman you love, and everything is meeting and mingling into each other. And you are not there, separate. You are in it throbbing at the very heart, pulsating. Then it is a universe.

Mind drops, objects disappear – the source of dream has disappeared. What have you been doing? You have been trying to get a better dream, to no avail of course. But the whole effort of the mind is to get a better dream. Don’t think that mind can give you a better dream – a dream is a dream. Even if better, it will not be a satisfactory thing, it cannot give you a deep contentment. A dream is a dream!

If you are feeling thirsty you need real water, not dream water. If you are hungry you need real, substantial bread, not dream bread. For a few moments you may be able to deceive yourself, but how long?

Every night it happens: you are hungry, the mind creates a dream – you are eating, you are eating delicious things. For a few minutes it is okay even for a few hours it is okay, but how long? Can you stay in this dream forever and ever?

It helps sleep, you don’t get disturbed. Otherwise hunger will disturb you, you will have to get up and go to the fridge. It helps: you can go on sleeping, feeling that you are eating; there is no need to go anywhere. But by the morning you will know that your mind deceived you.

Your whole life is just like a dream, and you are substituting dream objects for the reality. So every day everything is shattered, every day you are shocked into reality, because the reality goes on bumping from here and there. You cannot avoid it! A dream is a very fragile thing; the reality goes on bumping in and breaking.

And it is good, it is for your good, that the reality breaks your dreams, shatters them to pieces. But you again start collecting those pieces and creating other dreams. Drop it! Enough you have done that. Nothing has been achieved. Now no more of it!

Once you understand that dreaming has to be stopped, the world of objects disappears. The world will be there, but not of objects. Then everything becomes alive, everything becomes subjective.

That is the meaning of religious people who say that everything is God. What are they saying? God is just a metaphor. There is nobody sitting somewhere in heaven, controlling, managing, engineering. God is just a metaphor – the metaphor that the things in the world are not like things, they are persons. Deep inside a subjectivity is there. Everything is alive and throbbing. And this throbbing is not a fragmented process, this throbbing is a whole throbbing.

Of course you feel the beat of the heart near the heart, at the heart. But you think it is only in the heart? Then you are wrong – the whole body is throbbing. The heart only indicates, the whole body is throbbing. That’s why when the heart stops, the body is dead. It was not the heart really that was throbbing, the whole body was throbbing through the heart; the heart was just an indicator.

You are throbbing, but the whole is throbbing through you – you are just an indicator, a heart. The universe throbs and beats through you. You are not, the universe is.

And the universe is not a totality of objects, it is a subjectivity. It exists as a person. It is alive, conscious. It is not a mechanical arrangement. It is an organic unity.

-Osho

From Hsin Hsin Ming: The Book of Nothing, Chapter Five

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

An MP3 audio file of this discourse can be downloaded from Osho.com, or you can read the entire book online at the Osho Library.

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Ramana Maharshi: The Master of Silent Teaching: By Gabriele Ebert

Ramana Maharshi: The Master of Silent Teaching: By Gabriele Ebert

Editor’s note: Because Gabriele Ebert’s native tongue is German, I had to edit the article. If there are any mistakes in the article, I accept complete responsibility. Please bring any such errors to my attention and these will be corrected right away.

Master and Disciple

The characteristics of a spiritual master is that he leads his disciple toward experience of the eternal truth by way of teaching. In Hinduism this is called upadesa (spiritual teaching, spiritual instruction). But master and disciple have to harmonize with each other, i.e. the master must be able to transmit his teaching whereas the disciple must be ready to grasp it and put it into practice. Otherwise, the relationship of master and disciple will bring no fruit.

In giving instructions to the student, medium of speech normally plays an important role. However, in spiritual instruction and transmission to the prepared student, according to Sri Ramana, speech is not the most potent means. Indeed, the sage of Arunachala is known as the great master of silent teaching.

A visitor said: “Bhagavan says, ‘The influence of the Jnani (Self-Realized one)steals into the devotee in silence.’ Bhagavan also says ‘Contact with great men, exalted souls, is one efficacious means of realising one’s true being.”

Ramana responded: “Contact with them is good. They will work through silence. By speaking, their power is reduced. Silence is most powerful. Speech is always less powerful than silence. So mental contact is the best.”

And on another occasion Ramana pointed out the potency of such teachings outside the verbal medium: “Such mouna [silence] is not inertness but great activity. It is the most powerful speech.”

Silent Teachings – Heart to Heart Instructions

The silence (mouna) Ramana talks about is not just absence of speech. It is when the mind/ego becomes silent, free from thought, and comes to rest in the Self.

If the ego/mind is fully absorbed in the Self, it will not appear anymore and assert itself as a separate identity. Such a one in whom the ego has been fully vanquished is called a Jnani. He will stay in the Self and will no more return to an ego-centered state. The ‘I’ working through him/herself is no more the little ego-I, but the Self of God. In his booklet “Who am I?” Ramana says: “It is this state, where there is not the slightest trace of the ‘I’-thought, that is the true Being of oneself. And that is called Quiescence or Mouna (Silence).”

Only who rests permanently in this silence can also transmit his teaching in silence. The disciple is not yet in this state, but he yearns for it above all. Through the silence of his teacher he is guided into his own heart, the source of the ego, to that ‘place’ from where this impermanent ego-I arises and submerges again.

In the beginning, the disciple will become silent, and enter for a short in the same state in which his master permanently rests. In this state, he finally experiences his own true nature. In this silence he starts to understand the truth. This is the Heart to Heart instruction.

This is a different path than the one of eloquent speeches and lectures of popular swamis and gurus.  This is the direct path of experience. This is the pathless path, and only suitable for mature seekers. Ramana states that for most seekers verbal instruction is needed.

“Silence is the best Upadesa (spiritual teachings), but it is suited only for advanced students. Others are unable to draw full inspiration from it, therefore they need words to explain the Truth. But Truth is beyond words. It does not admit of explanations. Lectures may entertain individuals for a few hours without having an effect upon them, whereas the result of silence is permanent and benefits all. Even though it is not understood, that does not matter. Oral lectures are not so eloquent as silence. It is unceasing eloquence. The primal master Dakshinamurti is the ideal and he taught in silence.”

Ramana and Dakshinamurti

Ramana was often identified with Dakshinamurti, who is the youthful Siva and represents his ascetic aspect. He is considered as the Guru of all Gurus, sitting under a Banyan-tree in silence. The four disciples, who seek his guidance, are “old”, i.e. they are ripe and Dakshinamurti teaches them in silence alone.

Ramana writes in his two verses on Dakshinamurti:

“Who is the youthful guru beneath the banyan tree?

Very old are the pupils who seek him.

The handsome teacher’s speech is silence.

Cleared are all the pupils’ doubts.

Under the wonderful banyan tree shines the youthful

guru. Aged pupils come to him. Silence is this teacher’s

speech. Gone are the doubts in the pupils’ minds.”

The following episode from Sundaresa Iyer’s reminiscences illustrates Ramana’s way of silent teaching:

“It was a Sivaratri Day. The evening worship at the Mother’s shrine was over. The devotees had their dinner with Sri Bhagavan, who was now on His seat, the devotees at His feet sitting around Him.

At 8 p.m. one of the Sadhus stood up, did pranam (offered obeisance), and with folded hands prayed: ‘Today is Sivaratri Day; we should be highly blessed by Sri Bhagavan expounding to us the meaning of the Hymn to Dakshinamurti (stotra).’ Says Bhagavan: ‘Yes, sit down.’

The Sadhu sat, and all eagerly looked at Sri Bhagavan and Sri Bhagavan looked at them. Sri Bhagavan sat and sat in His usual pose, no, poise. No words, no movement, and all was stillness! He sat still, and all sat still, waiting. The clock went on striking, nine, ten, eleven, twelve, one, two and three. Sri Bhagavan sat and they sat. Stillness, calmness, motionlessness – not conscious of the body, of space or time.

Thus eight hours were passed in Peace, in Silence, in Being, as It is. Thus was the Divine Reality taught through the speech of Silence by Bhagavan Sri Ramana-Dakshinamurthi.

At the stroke of 4 a.m. Sri Bhagavan quietly said: ‘And now have you known the essence of Dakshinamurti Hymn?’”

Ramana’s own Spiritual Experience

Ramana’s way of teaching in silence arose from his own spiritual experience. At the age of 16 he suddenly had a kind of death-experience, through which he spontaneously realized the Self.

One day, when he was all alone at home, unexpectedly and without reason an unmistakable fear of death caught hold of Ramana. But instead of seeking help from outside he turned within and asked, who was it, that is going to die and if death of the body means also death of himself. Suddenly the shell of the ego dropped off forever. From then on, he was certain, that in truth he was the Self (Atman, God, the Absolute, or whatever name one might like to give it). His attitude towards the world changed completely. Ramana had become silent in the deepest sense of the word.

Soon after he left his home in Madurai and went to the holy hill Arunachala, which he venerated since childhood. He settled down and stayed there until his death.

In the first few years at Arunachala Ramana was silent and completely absorbed in this truth, which was his inner most and real Being. Withdrawn from the world, Ramana remained in perpetual samadhi while the insects fed on his body. His body was kept alive by a few people who by the grace of God happened to be around and noticed this teenager doing what they believed was intense tapas (spiritual practice).

Ramana did not start teaching of his own accord. If people would not have noticed him and sought his company or advice, he perhaps never would have become known. But the spiritual seekers who came within his orbit felt instintcively that he was a great sage, a rishi, a Maharishi, the One, who was a great seer and who lived the truth and was completely authentic.

Sincere people started to come to Ramana with their questions. The silent Sage answered them, at first only by writing down his answers. But slowly in response to the aspirations of those around, Ramana returned gradually to speech, and using words to teach.

Ramana always emphasized that the highest teaching is transmitted in silence. Ramana never called himself a guru or Maharishi. In His view there were no master and disciples. However, the students who gathered around him were overwhelmed by the brillaint luster and the peaceful radiance of the great sage of Arunachala. Ganapati Muni, one of most powerful intellect and spiritual personalities of the time was the first to call Ramana a Maharishi (Great Seer).

As Ramana adapted to his surroundings, he  gradually became more and more open to talks.  In the Hall, where he could be met days and nights, philosophical topics were vividly discussed. Pundits came with their questions. His followers like Ganapati Muni, were superb adepts of the holy Hindu-scriptures – and the answers which Ramana gave fill many volumes. At times the Hall was also a workshop of artful peotry. Politics and themes of everyday life were discussed as well.

Though Sri Ramana was a master of silent teaching and silence (mouna) is seen as an important means in Hinduism, he dissuaded his devotees from taking a vow of silence. Nevertheless Major Chadwick, one of the Western devotees of Ramana made plans to do so.

This amusing story is found in Major Chadwick’s reminiscences: “During the war I decided that I would like to do so, chiefly to protect myself from the jibes of others. I went and asked Bhagavan’s permission. He was not enthusiastic and told me that it was useless to keep the tongue still but to continue to write messages on bits of paper which so many so-called Maunis (silent ones) continue to do. In this way only the tongue had a rest but the mind continued just as before. I said that I had no intention of doing this but would throw my pencil and paper away. I felt that I had obtained a reluctant consent as Bhagavan agreed that people were worrying me. So I made the necessary arrangements, installed a bell from my room to the kitchen so I should not have to call my servant, and fixed a lucky day to begin.

The night before I was to start, a friend of mine brought up the subject in the Hall after the evening meal when only a few of us were present. Bhagavan immediately showed his disapproval and said it was unnecessary and in fact not a good thing at all. I did not talk much anyhow. It was better to speak only when it was necessary, that it actually did no good to observe silence, that if one did so for twelve years one became dumb and might obtain some thaumaturgic powers, but who wanted them? Speech acted as a safety valve. Naturally after this talk I gave up the idea.”

The Power Of Silent Look (Darshan)

Many people came to be in Ramana’s silent presence, without asking him questions or talk to him. His look was extraordinary intense and penetrating directly into the hearts. The cook Shantamma reports the following example:

“One morning a European came in a horse carriage to the Ashram and went straight to Bhagavan. He wrote something on a piece of paper and showed it to Bhagavan. Bhagavan did not answer; instead he gazed at the stranger with unwinking eyes. The stranger was staring back at him. Then Bhagavan closed his eyes and the stranger also closed his. They stayed without moving. At mealtime the meals were served but Bhagavan would not open his eyes. Madhavaswami, the attendant, got Bhagavan’s water pot and stood ready to lead Bhagavan out of the Hall. Bhagavan would not stir. We felt afraid to go near, such was the intensity around him. His face was glowing with a strange light. The guests in the dining hall were waiting and the food before them was getting cold. Chinnaswami was talking loudly to attract Bhagavan’s attention. Even vessels were banged about, but all in vain. When the clock was striking twelve Bhagavan opened his eyes. They were glowing very brightly. Madhavaswami took up the water jug; the European got into the carriage and went away. It was the last we saw of him. We did not even get his name.”

Silence is the Eternal Stream of Speech

In “Talks” many quotes of the Maharshi can be found, which make clear, that silence is the actual, direct and eternal speech, which flows heart to heart.

“Silence is ever-speaking; it is a perennial flow of language; it is interrupted by speaking. These words obstruct that mute language. There is electricity flowing in a wire. With resistance to its passage, it glows as a lamp or revolves as a fan. In the wire it remains as electric energy. Similarly also, silence is the eternal flow of language, obstructed by words. What one fails to know by conversation extending to several years can be known in a trice in Silence, or in front of Silence – e.g., Dakshinamurti, and his four disciples.

That is the highest and most effective language.”

Elsewhere it is stated: “Silence is never-ending speech. Vocal speech obstructs the other speech of silence. In silence one is in intimate contact with the surroundings. The silence of Dakshinamurti removed the doubts of the four sages. Mouna vyakhya prakatita tatvam (Truth expounded by silence). Silence is said to be exposition. Silence is so potent.

For vocal speech, organs of speech are necessary and they precede speech. But the other speech lies even beyond thought. It is in short transcendent speech or unspoken word, para vak.”

On 20th July 1936 Ramana had the following talk:

A visitor asked: “What is mouna (silence)?”

M.: “Mouna is not closing the mouth. It is eternal speech.”

D.: “I do not understand.”

M.: “That state wich transcends speech and thought is mouna.”

D.: “How to achieve it?”

M.: “Hold some concept firmly and trace it back. By such concentration silence results. When practice becomes natural it will end in silence. Meditation without mental activity is silence. Subjugation of the mind is meditation. Deep meditation is eternal speech.”

D.: “How will worldly transaction go on if one observes silence?”

M.: “When women walk with water pots on their heads and chat with their companions they remain very careful, their thoughts concentrated on the loads of their heads. Similarly when a sage engages in activities, these do not distrub him because his mind abides in Brahman.”

Major Chadwick reports the following episode: “A gentleman from Kashmir came to the Ashram with his servant who could not speak a word of any other language except his native Kashmiri. One night when the Hall was almost dark except for the pale glimmer of a single hurricane lantern, the servant came into the Hall and stood before Bhagavan in a respectful manner jabbering something rapidly in his own language. Bhagavan said nothing, but lay quietly gazing at him. After a while the servant saluted and left the Hall. Next morning his master came to Bhagavan and complained, ‘Bhagavan, you never told me you could speak Kashmiri, was it fair?’

‘Why, what do you mean?’ asked Bhagavan. ‘I know not a single word of your language.’

Bhagavan aksed the gentleman how he had got hold of this absurd idea and the latter explained: ‘Last night my servant came to you and asked you several questions in his language. He tells me that you answered him in the same language and cleared his doubts.’

‘But I never opened my mouth,’ Bhagavan replied.”

Another story: “When Bhagavan Sri Ramana was staying in the Virupaksha Cave, a District Collector and a Deputy Collector went there for his darshan. After prostrations to Sri Bhagavan, the Collector began to speak, narrating at length all that he had read and done by way of sadhana [spiritual practice], and at the end confessed that in spite of all that, peace was as far from him as ever before. No sooner had he finished than the Deputy Collector started to tell his story and stopped only after saying all that he had to say. These two conversations took quite a long time, but Sri Bhagavan did not interrupt them even once, observing strict silence all throughout.

Seeing that neither of them got any reply from Sri Ramana, the Collector once again delivered a long harangue and stopped only when he was at the end of his resources. Yet not a word passed from the mouth of Sri Ramana. The Collector was a little put out at this, and drawled out: ‘We have been speaking to you since long, but you don’t open your lips at all! Will you please tell us something at least?”

Then, Sri Bhagavan spoke: ‘All the while I have been speaking in my own language. What can I do when you won’t listen to it?’

The Collector was intelligent and he caught the meaning of Sri Ramana’s cryptical reply. He was overpowered with devotion and fell down at the feet of Sri Bhagavan, chanting the following (Sanskrit) verse: ‘Strange (sight) under the banyan tree! The disciples are all old and the Guru is youthful; he expounds (the Truth) in Silence and the disciples are freed from doubts!’

Then both of them sat before Sri Bhagavan in silent meditation. They got the peace they were in search of and departed fully satisfied at the outcome of their visit.”

Silence and Inspiration

This silence of the Heart is no dead silence, but also the source of all inspiration. Sri Ramana inspired Ganapati Muni in his writing of the last part of his major poem ‘Uma Sahasram’ just by silently sitting with him. Sundaresa Iyer reports the story in detail:

“Sri Kavyakanta [Ganapati Muni] had composed 700 stanzas of Uma in some thirty different meters, and had announced to his devotees in various parts of the country that this poem would be dedicated on a certain Friday in the Shrine of Sri Uma in the great Temple of Sri Arunachaleswara. Over a hundered persons gathered at the Pachaiamman Temple so as to be present on the occasion. … At about 8 p.m. on the evening before the dedication day, after supper, Sri Maharshi asked Sri Kavyakanta whether the dedication would have to be postponed to some other Friday, as 300 verses were still to be composed to complete the thousand. But Sri Kavyakanta assured Bhagavan that he would complete the poem immediately.

The scene that followed can hardly be believed by one who did not actually witness it. Sri Maharshi sat silent and in deep meditation like the silent Lord Dakshinamurty. The eager disciples watched in tense admiration the sweet flow of divine music in Sanskrit verse as it came from the lips of the great and magnetic personality of Sri Kavyakanta. He stood there delivering the verses in an unbroken stream while disciples eagerly gathered the words and wrote them down. … The ‘Sahasram’ was finished in several meters. … For a while the disciples present enjoyed the deep ecstasy of the silence pervading the atmosphere, as Sri Kavyakanta concluded with the normal type of colophon. Then Sri Bhagavan opened His eyes and asked, ‘Nayana, has all that I said been taken down?’ From Sri Ganapati Muni came the ready and grateful response ‘Bhagavan, all that Bhagavan inspired in me has been taken down!’

Silence and Self-Inquiry (Atma Vichara)

Sri Ramana taught self-inquiry (atma vichara) as the most effective spiritual practice. For the spiritual practitioner both – atma vichara and silence – belong inseparably together. Atma vichara is the active spiritual practice, which leads – together with the influence of the guru, to this silence. Ideally both complement each other (practice and influence of the guru) – as is the case with devotees of Sri Ramana Maharshi.

Ramana has described the method of atma vichara in his booklet “Nan Yar?” (“Who am I?”). The I in the question relates to the original I-feeling of the human being. Ramana says, that this I is the first thought, on which all other thoughts and feelings are based.

But this I-feeling is no continuous entity, as there are also times, when it is absent, so for example in deep-sleep. Ramana explains, that the mind, i.e. this I-feeling arises from the Heart and submerges therein again. With the question “Who am i?” the mind turns to its own origin. But no answer, which the intellect might give can be accepted. Ramana assures us, that with continuous practice the ego will dissolve in the Self – though this is no more in the hands of the practitioner. One day the ego will be rooted out and just drop away. Ramana has repeatedly pointed out this path as the most effective among all.

Teaching in Silence is not bound to Time and Space

One might ask, if with the bodily death of the Maharshi his silent teaching of the Heart to Heart transmission as well came to an end. Does this kind of contact with Him continue or have we to go on search for another master?

Before his death Ramana said: “I am not going away, I am here!” Again and again he assured his devotees, that the body is not the guru and that it does not matter for the jnani, if he is in the body or not. So his bodily death did not end his spiritual guidance.

When in 1950 Sri Ramana died of cancer, his devotees scattered to the four winds. The Ashram was deserted, so that even in daylight thieves could break in and loot. Only slowly the truth of Ramana’s words dawned on the devotees. The power of the Silent Truth and transmission again brought the devotees together to Ramanashram.

This continues today. People are still drawn towards Ramana Maharshi and open themselves to his silent guidance and to self-inquiry as taught by him.

Sources

This article is the translation of: Ebert, Gabriele: Ramana Maharshi: Der Meister der schweigenden Belehrung, in: Wege der Stille, Hamburg 2008)

Iyer, T.K. Sundaresa: At the Feet of Bhagavan. – Tiruvannamalai, 1980

Mudaliar, A Devaraja: Day by Day with Bhagavan. – 3rd repint. – Tiruvannamalai, 1989

Ramana Maharshi: Collected Works. – 9th ed. – Tiruvannamalai, 2004

Ramana Maharshi: Words of Grace (Who am I?, Self-Enquiry, Spiritual Instruction) . – 3rd ed. – Tiruvannamalai, 1996

Ramana Smrti Souvenir: Ramana Maharshi Birth Centenary Offering 1980. – 1.ed. – Tiruvannamalai, 1980

Sadhu Arunachala (A.W. Chadwick): A Sadhus Raminiscences of Ramana Maharshi. – 4th ed. – Tiruvannamalai, 1994

Talks with Sri Ramana Maharshi. – 9th ed. – Tiruvannamalai, 1994


Mudaliar: Day by Day, 9.3.1946

dto., 29.4.1946

Words of Grace, p. 4

Sadhu Arunachala: A Sadhu’s Reminiscences of Ramana Maharshi, pp. 63f

Miracle of Dakshinamurit, in: Collected Works, p. 148

the „night of Siva“, high Siva-feast

Iyer: At the Feet of Bhagavan, pp. 29f

Sadhu Arunachala: A Sadhu’s Reminiscences, pp. 91f

Shantamma: Eternal Bhagavan in: Ramana Smrti, 1.ed., Ramanasram [p. 83]

from Talk 246

from Talk 68

Talk 231

Sadhu Arunachala: A Sadhu’s Reminiscences, p. 65

Silent Speech in: The Mountain path, 1995, p. 37

Recent Books by Gabriele Ebert are:

Ramana Maharshi: Sein Leben, Stuttgart, 2003

Sadhu Arunachala: Erinnerungen eines Sadhus, Berlin, 2004 (German transl.)

Both books are available at amazon.de and can be ordered from each German book-shop.

Gabriele Ebert is a well known  Ramana devotee. Gabriele is a German librarian, scholar, and a painter. Please go to the following link to see her beautiful article on icon paintings full of inspiring pictures.

https://luthar.com/icon-painting-as-a-spiritual-path-by-gabriele-ebert

Gabriele is a long term member of HarshaSatsangh (Harshasatsangh@yahoogroups.com) which is the largest Ramana Maharshi Internet Group on the web. Gabriele has been active in Sri Ramana groups for many years. She has served as an inspiration and a role model for all of us with her dedication to the interfaith approach to spirituality.

Watching Krishnamurti (2): Brockwood ’74 Continued – Part Two

Perhaps few of us would tackle spiritual Reality, were it not for its underside – the pain when we are unable to be in relationship now:  with what is.  The passion of “the speaker” illumined for an instant, the blindingly obvious.   Then we must find it for ourselves, chipping away beyond thought.  Only life can do that:  life and the chisel of decades from within.   For a young person with insight, this is peculiarly painful.  We are a work that is incomplete.

I find it valuable here, to honour the pain.  We all know it.   It is as crucial to spiritual growth as “the understanding” and “the creativity” when the sun comes out.  Some of us wail into our notebooks;  wisdom may come to this focus, as to any;  here is a little of my workshop of the wailing.   What follows is, in essence, a fairly typical “ashram” or guru-bhakti story:

**

Krishnamurti portrait, 2nd version

“Can the mind remain with sorrow,  AS SORROW,  not rationalise or run away from it?   Can it remain motionless with this feeling we call sorrow?   I hope you are doing this as the speaker is talking about it;  otherwise it is no fun at all.

“Is there an action which is not based on an action?   Action based on an idea is time.   There is an inadequacy,  a lack of complete identification,  and therefore a conflict between the idea and the action.   What is seeing?   The act of looking brings its own order.   Looking at the fact of sorrow.   Look at that feeling,  without a single image about yourself,  or interpretation.   This requires tremendous attention, concern,  discipline.   This seeing then,  is the acting in which there is no time.   The moment there is time,  there is conflict.

“If I act according to an idea or ideal,  I am insane!   Of course I am!   Real action at any level of our life is not the future according to an idea,  but seeing,  without the image of oneself.   That is instant action.   If you listen,  that very act of listening itself,  is an entire action.

“Our entire moral structure is based on our pleasure and fear,  which is immoral …

J.Krisnamurti, Brockwood gathering, September 1974

**

September 1974

Today is the back slipping of my heart.  Don’t know what to do with it, this body.  All cells a-dancing in a question mark of wanting.   (But started a painting of Krish. which is very like him, and re-drew the portraits of two lads from Yorkshire.  Hungry, and now listening to Liszt …

Tomorrow, to Brockwood again for a second weekend.  Shall I see Daniel again there?  “Shall we meet in London this week?” he asked.  “No,” I said, “I’ve got things to do.”  Truth was that, and also how to manage seeing him with regards Akiva;  and in any case there was that “there’s all the time in the world” feeling, even though he’s off to Israel in ten days.  I feel at such times, almost bewildered, contained, basking in and trying to digest the present, no plans to be made.   But oh, on Tuesday night, I cried.  And still it rains, with an endless wet whisper.

A gust of wind rocks all the people on the platform back like a wave.  In South London the train rides among the chimneys.  I love the way he cleaves me with that deep tender thrust of his, and fills me up, sweet pain.

Doing my best to steer away, with the company of other people, thoughts of this human being, whom I don’t want to load with my ludicrous heart-storm.  Heart-storm destroys the ability to relate to him, or be friends.   What a lot of insane energy is spent, trying to materialize things in the mind.

I don’t want to be addicted to his comings and goings.  I want to enjoy the full tapestry, all the people, all my self.  When there is no thinking, there’s no problem, like when you wake from sleep.

And desperately anxious about hypothetical exchanges with Asher, re my going away again this weekend – we are still living together, right up till the time he goes off to India – what if he wants to come too?

As I keep trying to grasp, there is no problem until the problem is invented.  There is in truth, no problem anywhere – just situations.

Tree conference, Brittany 1987

**

It is Friday morning, and the sun is out.  Night of dreams.  Phone rang and it was Daniel.  We arrange to meet at the Theosophical bookshop … but we don’t know at what time, because the pips ran out and he had to catch a train!

Today or tomorrow?  Both are aspects of eternity.  There is a terrific discipline with Daniel, like clear waters.  Dreamed last night about Yorkshire and my father, and curious drifting creeks of land and sea.  And dreamed I was kissing Daniel who was in his sleeping bag, and he was very vague as to if or when we would ever meet again, and I was trying to keep my cool.

**

So strange a thought pierces sometimes the clouds.  It is about Krishnamurti giving talks at Brockwood, and sleeping in the house.  Around him coasts a profusion of individual dramas – pain and personal turning points – of which my own is but one flighty little cell of anguish, among it all.  Rather macabre!  Why does K attract all that, like a magnet?   What happens around him stings.  “The observer is the observed.”  How far does that go?  That phrase reverberates from my childhood, from the searching of my father’s path.

WHAT, through the dim opening in my clouds … observes?  “Whom” does it observe?   Krishnamurti is the hub of a wheel turning around him.

I only grasped for a moment, that I suffer a fragment of what preoccupies all and everyone on a revolution of that wheel.  There was some comfort seeing this.  But such comfort was immediately removed from my hand and I “see” it no more.

Every individual at Brockwood is the messenger of his or her absorbent and urgent tapestry of life;  each alone, and insoluble.   Poor K – sitting in the middle of all those bees – would-be’s – that buzz around him!   “If only one could just concentrate on Krish…”  – on the entirety of the garden, the open walks in the wet windy woods.  What a feast is lost through fear and anxiety and the complicated management of this.

Buoyant boats, Brittany 1987

**

“What is the problem in relationship?    (Thunder outside – tent rattles)   Attachment?  detachment?  and so on.   Attachment to WHAT?   Do, please go with me!   Attachment to what?   I’m attached to YOU –  my wife, my father, my mother, my sister, my – wife,  my girlfriend -whatever it is.   God, I’m glad I haven’t got any of those.    Thank God!   (laughter)   Sorry!    Don’t impose them on me please!   Heh!

“Attached to what?   Dominating what?   Jealous of what?    Attached to what?

“Attached to the image that I have built about her and she has built about me,  out of her loneliness,  out of –  whatever it is.   You follow all this?   Please,  watch it!   because we are going to –  we are showing that a problem that arises in human relations can be dissolved INSTANTLY.   Not carried over.   The carrying over is the INSANITY.

“What is the mind attached to,  when it says “I am attached to my wife”?   “my house” – whatever –  attached?   (Thunder)   Attached to the image I have built about her?   Am I attached to HER –  please listen! –  or to HIM?   or to the IMAGE I have built about her or him?    Obviously,  to the image!   I can’t be attached to the person,  because the person is living!   moving!   has its own desires,  its own ambitions,  its own problems,  its own – pettiness,  its own –  shallowness,  its own –  emptiness.   But I am attached to the image that I have built about her.   And that image becomes MUCH more important than her.  (Croaks)

“Can my mind be free from building images?   You understand?  (Pleads)   because then I’ve ended the problem.   Are you moving with me?    Can the mind empty its images about her?   She’s hurt me,  by word, by gesture,  by some – act.   The hurt is to the image I have about myself.   And I am attached to that image and to the hurt.   And that is non-relationship –  which is insanity!   I am living according to an image I have built about her,  about myself.   An IMAGE –  you understand? –  which is an idea ;   and therefore has nothing whatever to do with relationship.  

“So can the mind never build an image?   Which means —  be aware at the moment of hurt.  

“If you have no image,  you won’t be hurt.   It’s only when I have an image about myself that I can do something about it,  kick it around.   But if I have no image about myself,  you can’t kick it around.   So can the mind be free of image building –  which is the ideation?   which is the same thing in other words –  so that everything that the man or the woman does is instantly perceived and dissolved,  so that there is no image at all,  which means every incident is over for the next moment, and the mind is young,  fresh  and innocent.”

K, Brockwood 1974

**

Brockwood.  Hearing Krishnamurti speak again, I dived into my little capsule of pain, and have only just climbed out.  Capsule is all it is.  It exists, but it isn’t ALL, unless you choose to have it so.

DON’T RUN AWAY TO I-DON’T-KNOW!

Squall approaches, Brittany 1986

**

It is a bit of a cult around here.  Daniel and his friends bubble around the hot pot of Krishnamurti talk and Krishnamurti tapes (so do I at times, just to keep with it) like a gang of schoolboys.  I’ll go home tomorrow.  As to Daniel – I haven’t said an honest word to him all day.  End of affair.  Too much romanticism and starry nights on my part.  All bullshit.  He’s more than a fraction “precious”.  I mistrust every word I say.  Must learn not to invest emotions, or imagine what our kids could look like.   Leave him be.

There is no fact in suffering.  The fact is a circumstance that causes suffering, but the suffering itself is phantom!  a mind storm!   To cling to what happened, and declare it responsible for what I am feeling now, is to live in unreality.  So what do I bloody well do about what I’m feeling now?  If there is just the fact, there is no pain.  Pain’s a waste of time – to rub sand into a wound, just to exist.

The quality of open attention which is living, is fouled up by the intrusion of my injured self, its smallness, the way it picks away at all the idiotic, tense and embarrassing things I have said and been, and at every nuance of rejection.   That little injured self … is all I know;  that is what is meant by having to die to oneself!   I’m not afraid of my body dying.  I’m afraid of the death of my state of consciousness which in all its labyrinth is so essential to me, but so meaningless when applied to being with others;  to the world, in short.

Recognise no authority.  No person.  Become aware of the moment, the total pulse, and put the other thing away, the thing which through its hurt, recognizes my existence … and what is that false flat existence but a dream?  There are only the facts – as I heard over and over again as a child.  They are plain enough to see.  But I do not find it interesting enough just to see them, I cling to this Hollywood drama about them.   One has to be so tuned in, to recognize and strip bare without comment or commentary all those fleeting escape runs back to fantasy and what-if – within the quick of their instant.

Don’t-run-away-to-i-don’t-know!

And it isn’t a goal to seek to achieve.  If it is, it sends me right back into the falsehood.  It has to be the right action by WHAT IS.  To act as NOW, shrivels the monstrous shadows my memory prompts from the stage wings.

Keep the door open!  (Daniel said.)   “Keep the door open!”

There is in fact, no door.

The reality I want is health.  I want an active, not a passive condition.

See it, when the phantom comes billowing like a huge wave, a monster of importance with black patches all over it, just let it come, and SEE it.  It cannot withstand those Medusa eyes of truth.  It is no longer there.  And the future isn’t even here yet!

And there’s no value either in glorifying the insight which helped me to see.

The cross is no longer with us.  There is but one Way.

**

“Now,  without stress or strain,  can you be aware of yourself?   Can you watch yourself?   Can you watch the content of your own mind —  the beliefs, the national feeling,  the pettiness,  the shallowness,  the desires,  the anxieties,  fears —  all that is a part of your consciousness —  identification with a country,  with a name,  with a property, and so on,  so on.   And the hurts which one has received from childhood.   Now.   Are you aware of all this content?   And content makes up consciousness.   Without the content there is no so called consciousness!   Right?    Let me put it briefly.   Meditation is the emptying of the mind of its content,  as its consciousness,  and going beyond.   We will discuss and talk about meditation some other time.”

K, Brockwood 1974

A Meadow in West Hampstead

**

I have so strong an urge to keep him with me, by whatever means.  The state of “in-love” is a self engendered state of fear.  At the beginning it is not there.  There is encounter, the ebb and flow.  It develops through absence and threat of ‘losing’.  I make of him an emotional possession though nobody owns him.  From that point on, the relationship is false.

He, seeing this, will not be drawn into even a compassionate involvement.  Owning and being owned by no one, he is clear.  Friend to not just one, but everyone, he has no frontiers.  It is worthless to give time, company, body, talk, into a vacuum.  There is no filling, ever, of my vacuum “from outside”.

I went through many gates of anger, bitterness.  Every time I saw Daniel around the grounds of the house, it was agony.  He has time, space for everybody.  He is deeply and humanely involved in the Krishnamurti set-up and all its relationships, questions and internecine events.  Why shut himself away with one sorrow, from the tapestry?   Ah … but what I am seeing, and this breaks my heart, is what I wanted to be, when I first came here.  I wanted to be a free agent, a celebrant at the feast.

Then I am robbed of my self.  I stand outside the window, I am lost.  It is no longer my garden.  I spent the day alone, and very hurt.   Krishnamurti talked about suffering, this morning.

I went off afterwards and cried at the senseless conundrum of it all.  Towards the end of the day, I understood it was my craving and dishonesty which made relationship with Daniel impossible.  So I sought him no more.  No more did I clamber around fields and through woodlands and strain my eyes through knots of people.  Finis.

Cloud fortress

**

I spent the evening sitting in the crowd around the bright fire near the kitchen tent.  Out in the wind, which still blew great gusts, sparks flew in the intense darkness, and the flames lit up our faces as we tried to warm ourselves for the night.  I knew an extraordinary articulacy and fluidity with the people of that moment – a superficial skating, a temporary reprieve from the blow.  Perhaps my dreams of flying are pain relief?

I know this. When I suffer, but have decided to bed the pain into the embers, the words flow.  Always.  Talking.  Writing.  Manic perceptions and comedy.  Like blood.

Why is The Speaker such a talker?  Why is there this tremendous sound and activity around him?  Why, he is fire, fire, fire.

Something burns him.

I come face to face with the deep, unutterable shame of my personal being.  I become alien:  the Outside, looking in.  It lacerates whatever form it takes – right up through the core.  It is because Daniel is joy and I am not.  We are camped among scruffy trees and bushes.

I did not know whether or not to expect him in my tent that night.  When I went in, I found his sleeping bag there, with mine.  Earlier I decided to sever all connection, but then this seemed just a pose, and I decided to accept whatever happened.  At about 11.30 he arrived, I was in bed and still feeling cold.  We talked unsuccessfully, and had sex even more unsuccessfully, from the communication point of view.  At last there was no more pretence or theatre.   I took the lid off and let him see what went on, not just its noise, but my actual unspeakable problem.  He gave to this an attention which was total and uncompromisingly loving, his arms around me, listening.

Since then, when we talked – moments snatched from the river in which he flowed – he reiterated this attention, the urgency of “now” – to “stay with this thing no more!  Keep the door open and always go through it – do not close it round yourself.  When you feel it shutting, even just a bit, put your foot in it, your hand in it, push it, push on and through, that same door is habit when it closes, and truth when it opens, but you must work at it, every moment.   This is emergency!   NOTHING is more important than to open the egg.  Nothing to defend!  Keep watch.  Listen.  What is it?

Sky, Brittany

Daniel is very young, younger even than me.  Various entanglements of wine, woman and song, which I needn’t talk about here, advised him to steer his course clear of the romantic monogamous envelope, and from the pollution of possessing.  His wing is down also.  He is very young, with the ruthlessness of a growing tree.

You smile with the no-nonsense joy that is verily your own.  When I am with you, I am self-critical.  But I don’t want to be.  At moments, a terrific pulse connected us, and other moments disconnected it;  and other moments still – like now – we lay together talking.  There’s a light in your eyes, in the night’s damp pallor;  and you held me to you with much warmth in the morning, and there was no need for me to try to flop about and try to kiss you, try to be a seductive siren.

But I wanted to stay in his arms – fact or figuratively – all day. Only on the face of it, could I accept he must come and go.  As soon as we left the tent, the old grief flooded back, winding its envelope around me – the senseless, paralytic jealousy whenever I saw him with someone else.  Do you know why?  It’s because he looks like an insider;  and I want to be one of “them”.

I want to be seen by everyone he knows, being cherished and claimed.  This is the pathos of my snobbery to this imaginary prince.

Knowing there is no other way.

To go around with Daniel all day, would be having him.  And what is the having of that gentle beauty and hard truth for my own, to separate from the rest of the garden?   Illusion!  Illusion and therefore rot.   He has the clarity to stay out of the scenario, even when, as he said, there were times during the day when I looked so lost and empty he wanted to go up and hug and comfort me, and almost did.  We had agreed on something.

And once when I’d been walking everywhere looking for him, I came back from somewhere and found him, he’d been looking for me too, because someone was going to take a photograph of us all together, the inner circle of this camp, and he couldn’t find me, so I wasn’t in it, and I could have been.  Perhaps … when the next Krishnamurti bulletin comes out, it’ll have the photo in it, and I shall be able to see Daniel in it, among the people?

Something to hold.

Two boats, seascape

I never knew what to say to his eyes.  My mouth was nervous.  And in a dark place, a barn perhaps, sheltering from the rain with some others, I looked at him and thought, “you’re not so handsome really.  Your arms are under developed.  You’re not really manly …” and other nit picking things.   He was off to France that evening, and then to Israel.  Were it to continue, there could be no truth.  Michelle – the woman with whom he shares the tent and some travelling – and I, we spoke sometimes in a brittle way, and I watched her closely.  I sensed in her a feeling which was worn out, but maybe that was me.  She’s his travelling companion.  My jealousy, what’s it like for her?  She has a son, Louis, in his early teens.  She has shaggy hair, and she lives in the warmth of Daniel’s world.  I went up to London on the train with her, Louis, Daniel and several other people from the field.   Daniel and I shared more insights.  He was committed to bathe our encounter in as healing a light as he could summon up – which stripped me further of my hopes and left me humble and lame.    The lameness and exhaustion brought back in its turn more of that false hope in him as my comforter.  He told me I am too sexually self-conscious.  “It’s the way you put your eyes on me and dwell on it, just like that.  You know, you’re just FULL of feminine wiles and devices, you are!   What am I to do?”

He stood for a long time as I found my way through the ticket machines, seeing me off with love, or whatever it is that shines steadily in his eyes.  He gave me a book he carried with him for a long time – Kazantzakis’ Travels in Greece.  He said it could be a portrait of himself – he has a way of being a hero – and he chuckles disparagingly with his own weaknesses, flinging them often away as the ruthless young sapling does, to grow, to wander and be alive.  “Write to me,” he said “the address in Israel, it’ll find me.  Write me lots of letters!”

That is the way he comforts, and it is genuine, it is Consciousness to Life.  Life is devastated by the increment of Consciousness.

Does Michelle look weary?  Has she been through all this – was she still …? Yes … so he told me earlier, how much she too wants to hold him with her, some ligaments of their own hold them close, he cannot leave her, but nor is he “with” her only.  “With her, you see,” he had told me “it is a little different.  She has a son of her own.  She needs a kind of protecting, Louis needs it, I need it, I suppose.”

For that night, for him, Michelle and Louis, the boat, the crossing, the luggage, the trains, the clash and confusion of conveyences.  For me … home to face Asher as if nothing had happened.

In the Kazantzakis book are many passages he marked.  I turn the pages, a little dazed. Here are a few:

**

“Whoever has a field, says Buddha, thinks of the field, dreams of the field, becomes the field.  Only he who has nothing can be free.”

“The sternest emotion, the most daring fantasy in order to live – or better still, in order to be born –requires a body.  The creator discovers the body only by looking about him, how the light plays, how the mountains stand immobile … The quality and resistance of matter – marble or granite or mud – determine not only his methods but his heart as well.  There is no closed impassable barrier between artist and landscape.  The landscape penetrates the artist’s body through its five portals and fashions his senses;  and as it fashions them, a likeness is formed in their image.”

 .

“Only through struggle and selection would some few bodies achieve the lofty victory of the flower.”

“We have no more than a single instant at our disposal;  let us make eternity of that instant – there is no other immortality.”

 .

“The timeless Greek landscape, cut to the measure of men, flooded with light.  At each instant, it is slightly altered, even while remaining the same;  it shimmers, flourishing its beauty, regenerates itself, and so does not tire you.”

 .

“Auntie Lenio, he said, died day before yesterday.  Our hearts constricted.  We sensed that a word had perished;  perished, and now no one could place it in a verse and render it immortal.”

“Socrates would never go fishing for the soul in today’s gymnasiums.”

“Quickly I left, mocking my heart, which was ready once more to break.”

**

Harbour ‘86

**

**

My adventure invites fellow travellers.  I am a poet, an artist and a seer.  I welcome conversation among the PHILO SOFIA, the lovers of wisdom.

This blog is  a vehicle to promote my published work – The Sacred India Tarot (with Rohit Arya, Yogi Impressions Books) and The Dreamer in the Dream – a collection of short stories (0 Books) – along with many other creations in house.  

I write, illustrate, design and print my books.   Watch this space.

Han Shan and Buddha Nature

This is a passage from a teaching by Master Han Shan called “The Maxims.”

Our true nature is always there, beneath the surface. The concept of Buddha nature is the idea that we have awakening at our core. Your true self is enlightened and luminous and free. It’s only obscured by delusion, that’s why you don’t feel enlightened all the time.

Here’s a story:

In ancient times there was a place that they called The Temple of the Golden Buddha. This temple had a giant Buddha statue that was made out of gold. People from all over came to this temple to see the statue.

One day, the country was being invaded. Invaders were attacking neighboring villages and robbing the temples and news came that they were headed for the Temple of the Golden Buddha. The monks were very worried. They said, “What will we do? They’re going to smash our golden Buddha!” And to them, smashing the golden Buddha would be sacrilege, a horrible crime. 

A young novice monk had an idea. He said they should gather mud and rocks and cover the Buddha, disguising it as an ugly stone statue. They thought it was worth a try, so all the monks in the temple went out gathering mud and rocks. They covered the statue completely, so none of the gold could be seen. They finished just in time. 

The invaders came to the temple and saw nothing of value. There was nothing for them to steal. They walked right by the disguised statue. They didn’t even notice it. The invaders left and the monks were relieved. But they knew they had to leave the statue covered in case the invaders returned. 

Years and years went by. Generations of monks came and went. A time came when no one remembered the true nature of the statue. When the temple was no longer in danger, no one was left to remember that the statue was gold underneath. 

One day, a monk was meditating by the statue and noticed a glint. He pulled and some of the dirt and rocks and saw the gold underneath. He ran and grabbed all the other monks. They uncovered the statue and looked on it with wonder. 

So, the point of this story is that the statue was gold underneath, but it was obscured by dirt and rocks. In the same way, our true nature is good and pure, but it’s obscured by delusion. Enlightenment isn’t something we’re trying to get to, we’re just trying to uncover it. It’s there beneath our delusion.

Sometimes spiritual practice is called “recollection”. This is because we’re trying to remember who we really are, to re-awaken our Buddha Nature.

It is a ‘Releasement’ – Osho – Sat Sangha Salon

Truth is within ourselves; it takes no rise

From outward things, whate’er you may believe.

There is an inmost centre in us all,

Where truth abides in fullness; and around,

Wall upon wall, the gross flesh, hems it in,

This perfect, clear perception – which is truth.

A baffling and perverting carnal mesh

Binds it, and makes all error; and to know

Rather consists in opening out a way

Whence the imprisoned splendour may escape,

Than in effecting entry for a light

Supposed to be without.

Yes, these words of Robert Browning are right, absolutely right. Truth is not something outside. Truth is not an object that you have to find, search for, seek. Truth is your subjectivity: truth is the one who is seeking; truth is not the sought, but the seeker himself. To think of truth as something outside is to miss from the very beginning; and once you take a wrong step, you go on taking more and more wrong steps because one step leads to another. It is a chain.

The first step is the most important step. In fact, it is almost half the journey. If the first step is right, you have already arrived; you have moved in the right direction.

Truth is not without but within. And everybody has been seeking it without, hence everybody is missing it. And it is not only true about truth but about all search as such. Bliss is within, so is beauty, so is love, so is joy. All the values that one wants to attain to are within one’s own being.

These words of Robert Browning are of immense significance:

Truth is within ourselves; it takes no rise

From outward things, whate’er you may believe.

And man has believed down the ages in some truth which is somewhere in heaven far away. And one has to travel to it, and one has to go on a long, long pilgrimage. There is bound to be great effort – practicing, cultivating, preparing – and truth is all the time waiting for you within yourself.

All the beliefs mislead you because all the beliefs are based on the false idea that truth is an object. People come to me and they ask ‘Where is God?’ And they think that they are asking a very relevant question – as if God can be somewhere. They have not looked into the problem deeply. First they have to search into this questioning itself.  Who is the one asking for God? Who is this one searching for God? One should start from the very start. ‘Who am I?’ is the only significant question one can ask. And once this question is solved, all other questions are solved because God is found.

Raman Maharshi used to give only one meditation to everyone, whosoever would come to him: just to go on and on pondering, observing, watching, witnessing one thing – to let this question become so utterly your existence that it persists even when you are asleep – Who am I? And it has not to be repeated like a mantra. If you repeat it like a mantra you will have missed the point; it is not a mantra, it is an inquiry, and the greatest inquiry there is. It has not to be used as a meditation technique; it has to become your very life. Walking, let the inquiry be there – ‘Who is walking?’ Listening right now, let the inquiry be there – ‘Who is listening?’ And finally the inquiry has to penetrate to such profound depths that when you ask ‘Who am I?’ the inquiry is there – ‘Who is asking this question?’

Move to the innermost centre of your being. This inquiry is a movement withinwards. And this single question can solve all the problems; it is a master key: it unlocks all the locks.

Truth is within ourselves; it takes no rise

From outward things, whate’er you may believe.

Your belief is not going to change the nature of things. You can believe that a rose flower is a lotus – and you can believe stubbornly, you can believe blindly and madly – but the rose remains a rose; just by your belief it is not transformed into a lotus. Yes, you can remain in a kind of illusion, you can remain hallucinating, you can even start seeing it as a lotus. Belief creates dreams, but it cannot create reality. Belief cannot deliver reality to you because all belief is a hindrance. Belief basically means that you have believed before knowing; you are deceiving yourself. All believers are deceivers: they have lied to themselves. They have not known God, and they have started believing in a Christian God or a Jewish God or a Hindu God. They know nothing; they have not experienced anything.

Once a man came to me. He had listened for ten days, and then he came to me. He was crying, and he was an old man. And he said ‘You have destroyed all that I have believed, and now I am at a loss. For almost thirty-five years I have practiced a certain kind of life. I have done all that possibly can be done. And I was living in a beautiful dream, and you have shattered it all. I was thinking that I had started seeing God. I had great visions of God, and now they all have disappeared.’ And he was crying like a small child whose toys have been taken away, he said ‘Now, help me to start again!’  And I had to laugh even though he was crying, I said ’Start again? Then you will be getting trapped into another illusion. What do you mean by starting again?’ He said ‘My old beliefs are destroyed; now, give me new beliefs. That’s what I mean.’

People go on changing beliefs, but that never brings a radical revolution; it cannot bring. A Hindu can become a Mohammedan – nothing changes; just you have changed your dream. A Christian becomes a Buddhist – nothing changes; deep down everything remains the same. Unless you drop believing nothing is going to change, because belief is a deception. Belief means that you don’t know and yet you think you know. And the less you know, the more stubbornly you believe – naturally, you have to complement it. The less you know, the more arrogant, the more dogmatic, more violent you are in your belief – ready to fight, kill and be killed because you are afraid. If somebody brings light to you, and you come to SEE that your belief is just a belief and nothing else, then all that you have invested in it has gone down the drain, then your life has been a stupid life. The life of a believer is a stupid life, it is unintelligent.

Robert Browning is right. He says ‘whate’er you may believe.’ Your beliefs cannot make any change. Truth is as it is. Truth is not an object; you cannot believe in it, you cannot worship it, you cannot pray to it. Truth is your hidden reality. You are part of it, it is part of you; there is no separation between you and truth. And the first door to be opened has to open within you, then all the doors open. I am not saying that truth is not there without, but once it is known within, then you will know it without. There is no other way. Once you have seen it within yourself, then you will see it in a tree, in a mountain, in a star – in everything. Because now you have tasted the centre; now the centre is everywhere. Now you have known the inside of things. God is the inside of things.

But the first approach, the first acquaintance, has to happen within you because that inside which exists within you is the closest inside. How can you penetrate into the inside of a tree? It is very, very far away. You have not even penetrated your own inside – where you already are.

It happened…

Leo Tolstoy had gone for a morning walk with Chekhov. They came across a beautiful horse in the woods, and Tolstoy started talking about the horse. And he talked in such a way that Chekhov could not believe it. He said “What are you saying? You are talking as if you know the very inside of the horse!” – because Tolstoy was talking about ‘this morning, these birds, these trees, this sun, this sky, these clouds…’ and how the horse was feeling about the clouds, and how he was feeling about the trees and the smell of the wet earth; how the horse was feeling about the grass and the flowers and the sun. And he was saying it as if it were directly from the horse’s mouth. Checkhov himself was a great artist, a great novelist, a great genius, but he had never visualized how the horse would feel. And Tolstoy was saying it so deeply, profoundly, that he said “Leo Tolstoy, I feel as if you had once been a horse in your past lives!” Tolstoy started laughing, and said “No, but the day I came across my own inside, I came across everybody’s inside. Before that, I knew myself as the body – I knew myself as if from the outside.”

Have you any acquaintance with yourself from the inside, or do you only know that which the mirror says about you? That is as if you were standing outside yourself and looking from there. You know all that people say about you. Somebody says that you are beautiful, and you think you are beautiful; and somebody says that you are ugly, and you start feeling miserable; and somebody says that you are intelligent, and you are flying high; and somebody says that you are stupid, and you are shattered. Again, this is nothing but a mirror: others’ opinions cannot be more than mirrors. But have you never seen yourself from the inside? And there you are; there you have always been, you are abiding there. And if you cannot know this space that you are abiding in, how can you know the inner reality of a tree or a mountain or a star? And how can you know the inner reality of the totality?

God is inside of totality. But to enter into that, one has to enter within one’s own door.

Truth is within ourselves; it takes no rise

From outward things, whate’er you may believe.

There is an inmost centre in us all

Where truth abides in fullness…

True, absolutely true. And sometimes it happens that poets come very close to the mystics. Poetry comes closer to religion than anything else. Poetry is a glimpse into truth; mysticism is living there. Poetry is like the Himalayas seen from far away – those sunlit peaks, those virgin snows; religion is living there as those sunlit peaks, as that virgin snow. Poetry is a distant vision of truth; mysticism, or religion, is becoming one with it, knowing it as one’s innermost centre. But poetry comes closest.

Where truth abides in fullness…

Nothing is lacking in you, nothing has to be added to you. You are born perfect, because you are born of perfection. You are perfect, because the perfect is breathing within you, living in you. You are an extension of perfection. If God is perfect, then nothing can be imperfect, because all is his expression. How can it be imperfect? So, there is no need to seek perfection, there is no need to improve upon yourself. All that is needed is to know who you are, and in that very knowing one comes to feel the completion, the perfection. One has not to become perfect; one already is. And because we are trying to become perfect we are becoming more and more ridiculous.

Down the ages man has tried to become more and more perfect, and the only result is that man has become more and more ugly. The very effort is absurd. In trying to become perfect people have become guilty. In trying to become perfect they have become pathological.

In trying to become perfect, and failing again and again – and they have to fail because they are already perfect… You cannot attain to that which you already have, so the effort is doomed to fail. And when you fail again and again and again,, naturally, a great sadness settles; one feels utterly depressed. All hope disappears, and all joy with it. Life becomes an ugly evil; one has to bear it somehow. Life becomes sin. If you are trying to become perfect, life will become sin, because you will fail, you will condemn yourself, you will hate yourself – and a man who hates himself has gone as far away from himself as it is possible to go.

There is an inmost centre in us all

Where truth abides in fullness; and around,

Wall upon wall, the gross Flesh hems it in,

This perfect, clear perception – which is truth.

Truth is not a thing but the clarity of perception. It is not that you will have to see something; it is only the clarity of seeing that is truth. All objects disappear, all content disappears, only a clarity remains. Everything becomes transparent – you can see, you can see totally; nothing is hidden from you. That perception is truth.

Truth is not an object but an awakening in you. Let me emphasize it again and again that truth is within not without; it is an awakening within you; it is an awareness within you; it is intelligence functioning at its optimum. You cannot see truth; it is not a thing. You cannot grasp truth; it is not a thing. You cannot give or take truth; it is not a thing. It is your inner eye, your inner perception – what the Hindus call the third eye.

To be alert and awake is to be true. So, let us define. Untruth is unconsciousness, and truth is consciousness. Untruth is living like a somnambulist; truth is living like a Buddha, alert, watchful, witnessing.

A baffling and perverting carnal mesh

Binds it, and makes all error; and to know

Rather consists in opening out a way

Whence the imprisoned splendour may escape,

Than in effecting entry for a light

Supposed to be without.

The splendor is within you. It is just like a fountain hidden behind a rock, and because of the rock it cannot flow. Remove the rock, and the fountain starts flowing. This insight is also of tremendous significance. And I say ‘hidden behind a rock’ not ‘behind rocks’ because there is only one rock. Somebody thinks it is because of greed that he cannot attain to truth, so one has to renounce greed. Somebody else thinks it is because of anger, violence that he cannot attain to truth, so one has to renounce anger, violence. Somebody else thinks it is because of money, possessions, so one has to renounce all possessions. Somebody else thinks it is because of sex, love, attachment, so one has to renounce that. And people think that there are so many rocks: anger, sex, sadness, possessiveness, greed, etcetera, etcetera. No, there are not rocks; there is only one rock, and that rock is unawareness. Everything else is a by-product of that unawareness. It becomes greed, it becomes sex, it becomes anger; it can take many forms. But basically it is only one thing: forgetfulness, unawareness.

We have become completely oblivious of who we are.

… and to know

Rather consists in opening out a way

Whence the imprisoned splendour may escape,

Than in effecting entry for a light

Supposed to be without.

Don’t search for any light outside. The last words of Buddha were “Be a light unto yourself. Be a lamp unto yourself.” Don’t search for light anywhere else; the light is already there, the fire is already there. Just probe a little deeper into your being, enquire. Maybe much ash has gathered around the fire… just probe deep inside, and you will find the spark again. And once you have found a single spark inside yourself, you will become a flame soon, you will be a fire – a fire that purifies, a fire that transforms, a fire that gives you a new birth and a new being.

It is because of this that Martin Heidegger uses the word ‘releasement’ instead of ‘enlightenment’. His word is beautiful. It is a releasement: something is already there; it has only to be released. Just like the seed sprouting, becoming a big tree, and then comes the spring… and there is great joy, and the tree bursts forth into thousands of flowers. But they were all hidden in the seed, the small seed. The seed has been carrying the blueprint for all that: the colour, the shape, the fragrance – all was hidden in the seed. The tree is not anything new. The seed was unmanifest; the tree is its manifestation. It is a releasement.

I like Heidegger’s word, it is beautiful. It is a releasement: enlightenment is a releasement.

You are already that. You have never been other than that. Remember, remind yourself, shake yourself into awareness. Use all the opportunities of life as triggering points, as occasions, so that you can become alert and aware of who you are.

These words of one of the great Greek mystics, Plotinus, will be of help. ‘You do not really go away from It, for It is there; you do not “go” anywhere but remain present to It, yet you turn your back on It.’ Or as Raman Maharshi used to say ‘Enlightenment is simply to admit that you are already enlightened.’

Just to admit… Yes, Raman is stating the simple fact: it is only admitting. You are enlightened; you consist of it. You are made of light; light is the stuff’ that you are made of. Then why can’t you admit it? Why can’t you recognize it? And rather than recognizing it, you do a thousand and one other things: you search for God, you go to the Himalayas, you move to the monasteries, you torture yourselves, you become masochists in the name of religion, you destroy yourselves, you slowly, slowly commit suicide. You do everything, but just a simple thing you never do: you don’t admit. Why can’t you admit it? And nothing is being taken away from you. In recognizing the fact, all is gained, nothing is lost. But you have become too attached to your chains, you have become too attached to your misery – you have started thinking that this is you.

It is like an emperor who has fallen asleep and dreams that he has become a beggar. And in his dream he has a begging bowl and rotten rags, and somebody is trying to snatch the begging bowl from him. And he will fight; he will fight to the very bitter end. It is a question of life and death – somebody trying to snatch his begging bowl? He will give a great fight; he is not going to give it easily – that’s all that he has.

That’s what has happened. Misery is all that you have. You cannot admit that you are enlightened because then you will not be able to afford misery any more. So, many times you come to the brink, many times the recognition is very close by – you see the point – but you withdraw, you immediately start getting as far away from it as possible. You withdraw, you turn back. You have become too attached to your misery: that looks as if that is your kingdom.

This is my observation: listening to thousands of sannyasins, one thing seems to be absolutely certain: that nobody wants to renounce his misery. People are even ready to renounce their little bits of happiness; they are ready. This is strange, but this is how it is. If I say to them ‘Renounce your wife, renounce your children, renounce your home’ they are ready, they say ‘We are ready to go with you, Osho, wherever you say. We can renounce.’ But if I say ‘Renounce your misery, renounce your chains’ then immediately I see that they cannot gather that much courage. They cling to it, they will fight for it.

Raman is simply saying that all that is needed for enlightenment is to admit that you are enlightened. Just think of it. Just for a moment meditate over it. Can you admit that you are enlightened? And immediately you will see that it is difficult, because if you admit that you are enlightened then there will be trouble. And the trouble will be: you cannot be angry, and you cannot be sad, and you cannot fight with your wife or with your husband, and you cannot be possessive. All is lost, and that has been your whole life. Now, this is too much, you will say ‘How can one become enlightened so suddenly? First I will have to practise.’ That is only a way of postponing. You are saying ‘I cannot deny the truth of what you say, but I cannot admit it right now either. Yes, you are right, you must be right; but I have to prepare myself for it.’ And this is how you have been preparing for so many lives.

You missed Buddha, you missed Yoka – you can miss me too.

And you are always preparing, and you are always postponing, and you say ‘Yes, we understand what you are saying.’

Many times you are almost enlightened, and then immediately you shrink back. I say ‘almost’ because you can still shrink back, that’s why I say ‘almost’. Just one step more… but then fear grips you, you become so frightened. Then what will happen to your whole past and all your investments?

You will think that this should not be so – what investment can there be in misery? There is; people remain miserable because through misery they gain sympathy, at least sympathy. If they cannot get love, they can get sympathy, they can get attention.

And you are too attached to attention. Things are complicated then. You are too attached to attention – people should pay attention to you – and you don’t know what else to do. If you are miserable, they pay attention. If you are ill, they take care of you. If you go mad, everybody is kind to you. Just see the point why so many people go mad and when they go mad. There is a perfect timing to it. Whenever they are passing into some crisis, through some crisis, and they need attention, love, sympathy, care, they immediately choose madness. It is a choice – unconscious, but still a choice.

If they remain sane, everybody is hard. If they remain sane then the world is too much; then the wife is hard, the children are hard, the boss is hard – everything is hard. And they are tired. But if they are insane, if they have a certificate to say that they are mad, if the psychiatrist says that they are not in a position that anything should be expected from them, they can relax. Now nobody expects anything from them, and they can expect everything from everybody else.

Thousands of people who live in madhouses have only learned a trick; this is their way of life; they have learned a style. They are not all mad; they have just found a beautiful way of life where care has to be taken of them by others – they need not worry.

Just look into all the investments that you have put into your misery. You hanker for love, and your husband never sits by your side. You hanker for love, and your wife never comes and massages you. Now, you have a headache, and she comes and she is all love. Just see the point: the headache has become a need; because love is not freely available so you start paying for love with your headache. Whenever you need love, when there is starvation, when you feel that love will be nourishing, suddenly your mind triggers the mechanism – the headache comes.

And I am not saying that you are just pretending, I am not saying that you are pretending – a real headache comes; there is no pretension in it. I am not saying that you are just deceiving your wife, no; you are deceiving your wife and yourself too. The headache is real, but you have learned a trick.

Whenever love is starved, a mechanism triggers itself; it is autonomous. It immediately brings some illness to you, and with illness, love comes. Your wife becomes your mother – you always wanted her to be your mother. You have been in search of a mother not in search of a wife. Every man is in search of a mother. Every woman is in search of a father.

It is difficult to accept it, but it must be so because people’s mental age remains hanging somewhere near about thirteen – nobody grows psychologically more than that. Now, what more can you expect of a thirteen-year-old boy or girl? Psychologically that is the average age, so even the man who is seventy or eighty remains interested in the breasts of women – why? For what? He is still childish. Those breasts symbolize the mother; they are symbols. He is still hankering for a mother, for a warm womb – somebody to encompass him. But the only way seems to be to be ill, to be miserable, to be sad. And it seems that the prize is worth it; that’s why you can’t agree with Raman Maharshi that all that is needed for enlightenment is just a recognition. One has to admit that ‘I am enlightened.’ But from that admission your life will never be the same again; you cannot afford those toys you have been playing with.

-Osho

From The Sun Rises in the Evening, Chapter Three

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

An MP3 audio file of this discourse can be downloaded from Osho.com, or you can read the entire book online at the Osho Library.

Many of Osho’s books are available online from Amazon.com and in the U.S. from OshoStore-Sedona and Osho Here and Now.

Osho in Jalandhar, 1967 – 1968

 

A series of unpublished photos taken during Osho’s early travels, from Satish’s precious photo album. They were scanned in by Anuragi for us to share.

 

Osho used to travel extensively, and tirelessly, across India to give talks. In these photos we see the then Acharya Rajneesh arrive at Jalandhar (in those days known as Jullundur), where he gave lectures in various settings, including intimate talks at Satish’s home where Osho stayed each time he was in town.

Last August I was in Pune and a friend mentioned that someone had rare, unpublished photos of Osho. Since I am archiving the works of Osho and collecting objects related to the Master, he knew that I would be more than happy to see them.

We went to meet Satish in his office – he ran a property consulting company in Koregaon Park. He took me to his home, which was just above his office, and brought out a blue album. These were photos of the Master when he visited Jalandhar in 1967 and 1968. They were indeed precious, and he was aware that he had something rare.

Satish, though, would not part with them so easily. Only when Ma Bhagwati (of Pune) and Ma Dharm Jyoti confirmed that I was involved in the preservation of items related to Osho, did he agree to hand the pictures over to me. Bhagwati called me up, I travelled from Delhi to Pune and, when we met, he immediately got out the album and gave it to me.

This happened on 18 November 2017. After that, I visited Pune twice and always made it a point to go and see him over a cup of tea. He had become a close friend in a very short time.

During one of our chats he told me a beautiful story: When he met Osho for the first time, something special kept pulling him towards Osho. He did not consider him as one of those so-called religious men who roamed around his house. Satish’s father was known to host many religious men in their 35-room mansion, and so Osho was also invited to stay with them the two times he visited Jalandhar. The young Satish felt it was a nuisance that so many people of various religious sects stayed at their house, and so often. He told this to Osho, to which he replied that after that day no one would come any longer. And that’s what happened.

Satish also mentioned that Osho’s discourses in Jalandhar were recorded and that he was trying to retrieve the spools. The family home got sold a few years back and he did not know where they were! He was planning to go back to his home town to try and find them. He was supposed to come to New Delhi on 14 February and then continue his trip to Jalandhar, with that mission in mind. However, Satish fell ill and died in Inlakh Hospital on 8 February 2018.

With these beautiful photos, Satish has left behind a beautiful gift for all Osho lovers.

Osho No-Mind Meditations – Sat Sangha Salon

These no-mind meditations are compiled from the no-minds which were done in Osho’s presence. The gibberish stage has been lengthened and silent spaces have been added within Osho’s guided meditations. The links to the meditations are at the bottom of this page. You can either left click and listen online or right click and “save link as” to download to your computer.

For those of you who are not familiar with no-mind meditation here are the instructions:

No-Mind Meditation

First Stage: Gibberish or conscious craziness

Standing or sitting, close your eyes and begin to say nonsense sounds – gibberish. Make any sounds you like, but do not speak in a language, or use words that you know. Allow yourself to express whatever needs to be expressed within you. Throw everything out, go totally mad. Go consciously crazy. The mind thinks in terms of words. Gibberish helps to break up this pattern of continuous verbalization. Without suppressing your thoughts, you can throw them out in this gibberish. Everything is allowed: sing, cry, shout, scream, mumble talk. Let your body do whatever it wants: jump, lie down, pace, sit, kick and so on. Do not let empty spaces happen. If you cannot find sounds to gibber with, just say la, la, la, la, but don’t remain silent.

If you do this meditation with other people, do not relate or interfere with them in any way. Just stay with what is happening to you, and don’t bother about what others are doing.

Second Stage: Witnessing

After the gibberish, sit absolutely still, silent and relaxed, gathering your energy inwards, letting your thoughts drift further and further away from you, allowing yourself to fall into the deep silence and peacefulness that is at your center. You may sit on the floor or use a chair. Your head and back should be straight, your body relaxed, your eyes closed and your breathing natural.

Be aware, be totally in the present moment. Become like a watcher on the hills, witnessing whatever passes by. Your thoughts will try to race to the future or back to the past. Just watch them from a distance – don’t judge them, don’t get caught up in them. Just stay in the present watching. It is the process of watching which is the meditation, what you are watching is not important. Remember not to become identified with or lost in whatever comes by: thoughts, feelings, body sensations, judgments.

Third Stage: Let-Go

Gibberish is to get rid of the active mind, silence is to get rid of the inactive mind, and Let-Go is to enter into the transcendental.

After the witnessing, allow your body to fall back to the ground without any effort or control. Lying back, continue witnessing, being aware that you are not the body nor the mind, that you are something separate from both.

As you travel deeper and deeper inside, you will eventually come to your center. – Osho

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

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The Witness and the Illusion – Osho – Sat Sangha Salon

How may one enter into that supreme truth, how may one know that supreme mystery which is so near and yet remains unknown; which is forever with us and yet is lost? How may we reach it, how has anyone ever reached it? In these sutras is the explanation of that science, the process of that path.

Let us first understand a few things about illusion. Illusion means to see as it is not. Truth means to see as it is. Whatsoever we see is illusion, because we involve ourselves in our seeing; our experience does not remain objective, it becomes subjective. Whatsoever is out there, it does not reach us as it is. Our mind distorts it, embellishes it, ornaments it, prunes it – making it bigger or smaller and changing it into many, many forms.

The biggest change and the deepest illusion is that we associate ourselves with everything, which in fact we are not associated with at all. As soon as we are associated the reality is lost and the dream projection starts appearing true. For example, we call a thing ‘mine’ – ‘my house’… the house which was there when we were not and which will still be there when we will be no more. Something that can be before I am, and will continue after I am not, which does not disappear with my disappearance – how can it be ‘mine’? If I die this moment my house does not collapse or disappear, in fact it will not even know that I have died – then what kind of association can there be between myself and that house? What is the relationship? Tomorrow someone else will live in that same house and call it ‘mine’. Yesterday somebody else was living in it and he was calling it ‘mine’. Who knows how many people have stuck their ‘I’ on that house, and have passed away? But that ‘I’ never sticks onto the house, and that house does not belong to anybody; the house belongs to itself.

In this world everything belongs to its own self. If we can understand this properly, we shall be able to shatter the illusions easily.

There is a piece of land. You call it ‘my field’, or ‘my garden’. If not today, tomorrow there will be claims advanced about the moon – America will say it is ’ours’, Russia will say it is ’ours’. Until yesterday the moon did not belong to anybody; it simply was. It simply belonged to itself. But now someone or other will claim the moon and sooner or later there will be struggles and confrontations. Up to now the sun belonged to itself, but tomorrow the sun may also be claimed.

Wherever man puts his feet he labels it with his ‘I’. Nature does not accept his labels, but other human beings have to, otherwise there will be confrontation. Others have to accept the labels because they want to put their own labels on things. So the house becomes somebody’s and the piece of land becomes somebody else’s. Why are we so impatiently eager to stick this label of ‘I’ somewhere? The eagerness is because the more places and things on which we stick this label, or make our signatures, the bigger the circle of ‘mine’ grows and the bigger the ‘I’ is developed within us.

‘I’ is as big as the number of things that carry its label. If someone says that he has one acre of land, how can his ‘I’ be as big as that of another person who says, “I have one thousand acres of land”?

With the expansion of the ‘mine’, the ‘I’ feels as if it is growing bigger. If the expanse of ‘mine’ decreases, the ‘I’ also shrinks. So every brick of ‘I’ is made up of ‘mine’. Thus the more ways I can say ‘mine’, the higher rises the palace of ‘I’. Hence our whole life we remain in only one race – how many things we can stick our labels on and say, “It is mine.” In so doing, while we continue to label things, one day we die and wherever we had put our labels, someone else begins to stick his labels on the things we had called ‘mine’.

Things belong to themselves, not to any person. They can be used, but there can be no ownership. Ownership is an illusion, and while we are using them we should have a sense of gratitude because we are using something that does not belong to us. But when we say ‘mine’, all sense of gratitude disappears and a new world of ‘mine’ is created. That includes money, position, prestige, education and everything. For these things it may be okay, but what is more surprising is that things which have nothing to do with ‘I’ also get included. We say: my religion, my god, my deity, my temple – with whom ‘I’ can have no relationship whatsoever. And if it can, then there is no possibility of freeing oneself from the world. If religion can also be mine and thine, if God can also be mine and thine, then there is no hope; where shall we then find a way out of ‘mine’? If God also falls within its jurisdiction, then there remains no space left anywhere for the ‘I’ to go away to. But we put the label of ‘mine’ on temples and mosques and on God as well.

Wherever man goes he reaches there with his ‘mine’. Try to understand the implications: ‘I’ actually becomes bigger through ‘mine’, but the greater the expanse of ‘mine’, the greater the unhappiness. The increase in ‘I’ is the increase of unhappiness, because ‘I’ is a wound. And the greater the ‘I’, the bigger the area vulnerable to hurt, so that more hurt can be inflicted upon it. It is like someone having a large physical wound which tends to get hurt every now and then; any move the person makes and it gets hurt. The wound is big, its area large, and any little touch becomes a hurt. The bigger the ‘I’, the bigger the hurt and the greater the pain.

With the expansion of ‘mine’, the ‘I’ expands. As the ‘I’ grows, the pain also grows. On one hand one feels that happiness is on the increase, on the other hand the unhappiness also goes on increasing. The more we increase this happiness, the more unhappiness goes on increasing – and between the two an illusion is carried on. Where there is no possibility of saying ‘mine’, there too we go on saying ‘mine’ falsely, un-meaningfully. This hand you call ‘mine’, this body you call ‘mine’, are also not yours. When you were not, even then the bones, the skin, the blood of this hand existed somewhere; and they will exist even after you. The bones in your body, they have been bones in so many other earlier bodies. The blood in your body has flowed in the body of some animal yesterday and in some tree the day before. Who knows how long, how many billions and trillions of years, the journey has been? Even when you won’t be, not a single particle of your body will be annihilated. It will all exist. It will flow in some other bodies.

Understand it this way: the breath you took in just now, a moment ago it was inside the person sitting next to you. A moment ago he was calling it “my breath,” and a moment later it does not belong to him anymore, it has become somebody else’s.

Life does not accept anybody’s claim over it and goes on flowing each moment. But we go on claiming. This illusion of claim, this is man’s deepest illusion.

So whenever a person says ‘mine’, he is falling in ignorance. This sutra is to break this very illusion. Not only the land is not mine, the house is not mine, the money is not mine; even the body is not mine. Your body is made up from the atoms of your parents. Those atoms existed before you were, and they are coming to you after a long journey. Before your parents, they were in the bodies of their parents. These atoms have had a long journey of millions of years; now they constitute your body. That body too is a field, a land in which you are rooted, but you are not it. You are not the body, you are separate from it.

This sutra says a man is not only not the body, it goes even deeper and says man is not even the mind, because mind is also an accumulation.

Do you have a single thought which may be yours, which you can say is yours? There are none. Some have come from tradition, some from scriptures, some from hearing someone, some from your reading – they have come from one or the other external sources. If you search for the birth chart of your every single thought, if you look at the journey of every single thought, you will find you don’t have a single thought of your own, they are all borrowed; they have come to you from somewhere.

No thought is ever original, all thoughts are borrowed. But we claim even a thought to be ‘mine’.

Remember, even a breath cannot be called ‘mine’; thought is a much more subtle matter. Going deeper and deeper into this analysis, where does one come to? Where have the Upanishads come to? Where does Buddha come to? Where does Mahavira come to? Continuing this analysis, using the negation: “I am not this, I am not this”; when in the end nothing remains to be negated, when nothing remains about which I can even think whether it is mine or not, that which remains even then…. When there is nothing left to cut, when all relations are broken and none remains that can still be broken, that which remains even then is what the Upanishads have called sakshi, the witness.

There is a big world around me – it is not mine. Shrinking I come closer – this body is not mine. Descending deeper into it – the mind is not mine. Then who is there whom I can call ‘I’? Or is there nothing in me which I can call ‘I’? Am I, or am I not? Cutting away ‘mine’ in its entirety, what purest thing remains within? Only one thing remains which is not discarded; there is no way it can be discarded.

In the West there was a philosopher named Descartes – a deep thinker. He decided not to accept anything until he found the truth which cannot be doubted, so he began to reflect. He labored hard and he felt everything was doubtful. One may say “God is,” but a doubt can be raised about it. God may or may not be, but a doubt can always be created. “There is heaven,” “There is liberation” – it can all be doubted. Descartes said, “I will believe only in a thing which cannot be doubted, not something that can be proved, or argued in favor of, no. Something that cannot be doubted, something which is inevitable, indubitable… only then I will accept it.”

He searched and searched. However he too stopped at one point. He denied God, heaven, hell, and everything else, but he got stuck at one point – “Am I or not?” Descartes said, “This cannot be doubted, because even if I say ‘I am not,’ then too I am needed to be able to say this.” It is like a person who is in the house and who answers the caller, “I have gone out,” or “Right now I am not in the house. Come back in a little while and then I may meet you because by then I will be back home.” His very telling this will be the proof of his being at home. So the fact of my being is indubitable. This much is clear, that I am. Though what I am is not so clear. Am I a body, or a mind, or what? – This is not so clear.

This is what the Upanishads are in search of. One after another everything is eliminated, just as one would remove layer after layer of an onion. If you go on peeling an onion, finally nothing will be left of it in your hand. An onion is nothing but layers upon layers of skin – clothing over clothing – and there is nothing to be found if you go on undressing it. It is as if someone may have made a cloth-doll and we remove the cloths one by one. The first layer removed, the second layer is revealed; the second layer removed, the third layer is revealed; and so on, until all layers of cloths have finally been removed – and there remains no doll any more, just a nothingness in your hand.

So the biggest search of man is to find out if he too is nothing but an accumulation of many, many layers that we can go on peeling off and in the end there is nothing in our hand. If we go on denying and saying, “I am not the body,” “I am not the mind,” “I am not this,” “I am not that,” it may turn out to be the story of the onion and in the end nothing may remain of which one may say that “This is me.”

But the Upanishads say that even if it is so, yet it is necessary to know the truth; even if it is true that there is nothing within, yet it is worth knowing it, because the outcome of knowing the truth is very significant. But on searching deeply, however, it is found in the end that no, man is not just an accumulation of clothing, man is not just layers upon layers upon layers, there is something within the layers which is different. But we only come to know of that when by removing all the layers we arrive within ourselves. That element which remains in the end is called by the Upanishads sakshi, the witness.

This word sakshi is very beautiful and very valuable. The whole philosophy, genius and wisdom of the East is implied in this small word. The East has contributed no other more important word than sakshi, the witness, to the world. What does sakshi mean? Sakshi means the seer, the witness. Who is this who is experiencing that “I am not the body?” Who is this who is experiencing that “I am not the mind?” Who is this who goes on denying that “I am not this, I am not this?” There is an element of seeing, of watching, of the watcher within us which sees, which observes everything. This seer is the sakshi, the witness. What is seen is the world. The one who is seeing is who I am, and what is being seen is the world. Adhyas, the illusion, means that the one who is seeing misunderstands himself to be all that is seen. This is the illusion.

There is a diamond in my hand: I am seeing it. If I start saying that I am the diamond that is an illusion. This illusion has to be broken and one has to come, finally, to that pure element which is always the seer and is never the seen. This is a little difficult. The one who is the seer can never be seen, because by whom will it be seen? You can see everything in the world except yourself. How will you see yourself? – Because two will be needed for seeing, one who sees and the other who is seen. We can grab everything with a pair of tongs except the tongs themselves. That effort will fail. We may find it puzzling that when the tongs grab everything, why can they not grab themselves?

We see everything, but we are not able to see ourselves. And we will never be able to. Whatsoever you can see, know well that that is not you. Thus take one thing to be certain, that whatsoever you are able to see is not you. If you are able to see God, then one thing has become certain, that you are not God. If you have seen light within you, one thing is conclusive, that you are not light. If you have an experience of bliss within you, one thing is determined, that you are not bliss. Whatsoever has been experienced, you are not that. You are that which experiences.

So whatsoever becomes your experience, you are beyond it. Therefore it will be useful to understand one difficult point here, that spirituality is not an experience. Everything in the world is an experience, but not spirituality. Spirituality is reaching towards that which experiences all, but which itself never becomes an experience. It always remains the experiencer, the witness, the seer.

I see you: you are on one side; I am on the other side. You are there, the one who is being seen; I am here, the one who is seeing. These are two entities. There is no way of dividing oneself into two so that one part sees and the other part is seen. Even if it was possible to divide, then the part that would be seeing is myself, the part that would be seen would not be myself. The matter is finished.

This is the whole process or methodology of the Upanishads: neti, neti – neither this nor that.

Whatsoever can be seen, say that you are not that. Whatsoever can be experienced, say that you are not that. You can go on stepping backwards, until nothing remains that can be denied or eliminated. A moment comes when all scenes are lost. A moment comes when all experiences are dropped – all!

Remember, all! The experience of sex is of course dropped; the experiences of meditation are also dropped. The experiences of the world, of love and hate are dropped; the experiences of bliss and enlightenment are also dropped. Only the pure seer remains. Nothing is there to be seen; only emptiness remains all around. Only the watcher remains and the empty sky all around. In the middle stands the seer, the watcher, who sees nothing because everything has been denied and eliminated that could be seen. Now he experiences nothing. He has removed all experiences from his way. Now he remains alone, the one who was experiencing.

When there is no experience, there is no seeing; there is nothing seen and there is no object to be seen, and the witness alone remains. It becomes very difficult to express in language what really happens because we have no other word except ‘experience’ in our language, therefore we call it ‘self-experience’ or ‘self-realization’. The word experience is not right. We say “experience of consciousness” or “experience of the Brahma, the absolute,” but none of these expressions are right, because the word experience belongs to that same world which we have eliminated. The word experience does have a meaning in the world of duality, where there was ‘the other’ too. Here it has no meaning at all. Here only the experiencer remains, the witness remains.

The search for this witness is spirituality.

Remember: the search for God is not spirituality. In the ancient yoga sutras God is not discussed, not even mentioned. There was no need. Later, even when the sutras mentioned God, they called God a means in the journey of spirituality and not a goal. It is said God is useful in the spiritual practice, in the spiritual search, hence it is good to accept it, but it is only a means, a device, that’s all.

Buddha and Mahavira also denied God. They invented new devices. This device is not needed, they said. If God is nothing but a device, then other devices will serve the purpose as well.
But both Buddha and Mahavira cannot deny sakshi, the witness. They can deny God, they can deny everything else, but when it comes to sakshi, it is religion. If there is no mention of the witness, understand it well that the whole thing has nothing to do with religion. Everything else is secondary. Everything else may be useful, may not be useful, there can be differences of opinion about everything else, but not regarding the witness.

Therefore, if some day in this world a science of religion is created, there will be no mention of God, soul or Brahma. These are all local matters – some religions believe in them, some do not – but the sakshi will certainly be mentioned because it is not a local issue.

There can be no religion without the witness. So the witness alone is the scientific basis for all religious experiences – of all religious search and journeying. And it is on this and around this sakshi that all the Upanishads revolve. All principles and all indicators are for pointing out the witness.

Let us try to understand this a little further. It is not difficult to understand the meaning of the word witness, but it is a complex thing in actual practice.

Our mind is like an arrow, sharpened on one end. You may have seen an arrow: it cannot be shot from both its ends; an arrow will only go in one direction. It can’t travel in opposite directions simultaneously; it will go only towards its target in one direction.

So, when the arrow is on the bow and then it is shot, there are two aspects to be considered – when it leaves the bow on which it was set it begins to move away from it; and it begins to come closer towards the target, where it was not earlier. One state was that the arrow was on the bow, and far away on a tree was sitting a bird. The arrow was still on the bow and had not yet pierced the bird. Then the arrow left the bow, started moving away from it and coming closer to the bird. And then comes the state when the arrow has pierced the bird; the bow remains vacant and the arrow is in the chest of the bird.

This is what we are doing with our awareness the whole time. Whenever the arrow of our awareness leaves us, the bow within becomes vacant and the arrow, on reaching the object, is attached to it. A face looked beautiful to you; the arrow of your awareness is released. Now that arrow is not within you, the awareness is not within you. The awareness raced away and attached itself to the beautiful face.

There is a diamond lying on the road; the arrow is released from the bow. Now the awareness is not within you, now the awareness moves and, reaching the diamond, pierces its heart. Now your awareness is with the diamond and no longer within you. Now the awareness is somewhere else. So all the arrows of your awareness have reached out and pierced somewhere else – and somewhere else, and somewhere else. You have no awareness within you any more, it is always going out. An arrow can only go in one direction but awareness can be bi-directional – and when that happens, the witness is experienced. The arrow of awareness can go in both directions; it can be two-edged.

When your awareness is drawn somewhere, if you can manage only this much, then one day the witness will happen within you. When your attention is drawn outside – say a beautiful young woman passed by or a beautiful young man passed by, your awareness was caught there and now you have completely forgotten yourself, the awareness is no longer within. Now you are not conscious, now you have become unconscious because your consciousness has traveled to someone else, now your consciousness has become the shadow of that person or object – now you are no longer conscious.

Now, if you can do this one thing: you saw someone beautiful; your awareness was drawn there. If in that same moment you can be aware of the bow within from where this arrow has been shot, if you can simultaneously see them both – the source from where the awareness is shooting forth and the object where awareness is going to – if they can both come into your attention simultaneously, then you will experience for the first time what is meant by the witness. From where the awareness is arising, from where the awareness is shooting away – that source has to be found.

We see a tree – we see its branches, its foliage, its leaves and flowers, its fruits, but we are not able to see the roots. The roots are hidden in the darkness underneath. But the tree is taking its nourishment from the roots. Your awareness expands and travels all around, a big tree of the world is created, but the source from where the awareness emanates, that oceanic consciousness remains unnoticed. What is needed is that the roots are also seen at the same time; both the roots and the tree are seen simultaneously.

Understand it this way: when I am speaking, your awareness is on my words. Make this a double pointed arrow… it can become so right now, this very moment. When I am speaking, do not only listen to what I am saying, also remain aware simultaneously that you are listening. The speaker is someone else, he is speaking; I am the listener, I am listening. If even for a moment, now, here, you can manage both things simultaneously – listening as well as remembering the listener, this remembrance within that, “I am listening” – then there is no need to repeat the words. If you repeat the words, “I am listening,” you will not be able to listen at the same time; you will miss what I said. There is no need to form the words inside, “I am listening, I am listening.” If you did that, you would be deaf for that period of time to what I was saying. In that moment when you heard your own voice saying, “I am listening,” you wouldn’t hear what I was saying.

It is a simultaneous experience of listening to what I am saying and also being aware that you are listening. The feeling, the realization, the experience that you are the listener is the second aspect.

Achieving awareness of the second aspect is difficult. If you can manage it, becoming aware of the third aspect is very easy.

The third aspect is this: if the speaker is A, the listener is B, then who is the one that is experiencing them both, the speaker as well as the listener? That one is the third, and this third point is the witness. You cannot go beyond this third. This third one is the last point. And these are the three points of the triangle of life: the two are the object and the subject, and the third point is the witness of these two, the experiencer of these two, the seer of these two.

-Osho

From Finger Pointing to the Moon, Chapter Three

Copyright© OSHO International Foundation

You can read the entire book at the Osho Library.

Many of Osho’s books are available online from Amazon.com and in the U.S. from OshoStore-Sedona and Osho Here and Now.

Check out: Kapil Sharma visits the Shirdi Sai Baba Temple

Check out: Kapil Sharma visits the Shirdi Sai Baba TempleTo seek blessing for his upcoming film Firangi

Earlier this year Kapil Sharma made headlines after his inflight tussle with fellow comedians. Well, since then, there has been plenty of tumult in the TV comedian and actor, Kapil Sharma’s life. However, putting things behind him recently at the launch of the trailer of his film Firangi, Kapil finally broke his silence and responded to a variety of questions. In fact, at the event Kapil also spoke about the depression he faced and his long path to recovery.

Continuing with the same, though his schedule still remains rather hectic, Kapil was recently snapped at the Shirdi Sai Baba Temple. Apparently Kapil Sharma visited the holy place to seek blessing before the release of his upcoming film Firangi.

Back on the film front, Firangi that also features Ginni Chatrath and is directed by Rajiev Dhingra is slated to release on November 24, 2017.

 

 

 

Other News Today

The Historic Sai Baba Temple

The Sai Baba Temple is named after a popular Indian saint, Shirdi Sai Baba.  Sai Baba was regarded as a famous yogi and guru in India.  Many Muslim and Hindu devotees believe that he was Lord Krishna’s incarnation.  Others regard him as the incarnation of Dattatreya.  Based on public records, there was no information found regarding his birth but his death was dated on October 15, 1918.

The origin of Sai Baba starts when Sai Baba came to Shirdi when he was a child.  No one knew where he came from and the reason of his visit.  Devotees of the saint believe that he was placed on this earth to spread the message of joy and love in the world.  He regarded everyone as equal in his eyes.  He looked beyond color, religion and social standing.  The Sai Baba temple was then built in honor of his memory and teachings.

The Sai Baba Temple is a holy place of worship for devotees of the Indian saint.  The temple is located in Shirdi, a small town in Maharashtra.  The temple can be accessed from anywhere in India with an easy train ride.  Visitors should then get off at Manmad which is the nearest railway station.  From there, ask locals around to find your way to the temple. Buses and taxis are also available to go to the temple.

Everyone is welcome to visit the temple no matter their religious beliefs.  The body of Sai Baba is buried in the main shrine called the Samadhi Temple.  The Sai Baba Temple also contains a marble image and likeness of the Indian guru in a sitting position.  The image of Sai Baba is praised as a beautiful piece of religious art.  It was made by a famous sculptor, Sri Talini of Mumbai.

The Samadhi Mandir was previously owned by a well-known millionaire devotee who wanted to keep an image of the guru to himself.  Sai Baba’s Samadhi was encased in white marble stone.  A railing was then built around the Samadhi and adorned with intricate ornaments.  Two pillars made of silver stand guard before the Samadhi which are also embellished in decorative art.  Behind the Samadhi is a statue of Sai Baba which was made by the late artist, Balaji Vasant.

For visitors to get a closer look at Sai Baba, his image can be seen by going through the hall’s main entrance.  Once inside, visitors can view photos of the guru along with his many devotees through the years.  There is also a room nearby where people can see the things used by Sai Baba in his daily routine.

A short distance away is the Chavadi of the Sai Baba.  It has been told that the late guru used to sleep in that very place every other day.  The Chavadi contains two areas with one area devoted to a large Baba portrait.  This part of the Chavadi also contains a white wooden chair and bed that used to belong to Baba.

The historic Sai Baba Temple is a religious shrine visited many devotees from around the world.  For visitors who want to see the resting place of India’s revered guru and saint, the Sai Baba Temple is open to anyone curious about the life of the famous Indian guru.

Sarah Cruz

Marketing Lead and Blogger at Cush Travel

Sarah loves traveling the world. She started with a simple domestic trip and the rest was history, including her savings. She has been living around South East Asia for the past years and another continent looks to be her next destination.

11 Practical Formulas Of Life By Osho

Philosophy of Osho – Understanding Osho and his thoughts are not easy, it needs you to be intellect and have a matured mind.

Choosing some precious value from Osho’s voice is as easy as it is, even harder.

Take anything from the bottomless ocean of his speech, from anywhere, every sentence is like a treatise. Thus, by adopting the Philosophy of Osho mentioned below, anyone can make their practical life a success.

 

The Philosophy of Osho

1 – The first formula says that humans tend to live either in their past or is in the future worries. He remains unhappy in both of these situations. Osho says that real life is in the present. It does not belong to any past or coming tomorrow. The one who is presently alive remains happy.

 

2 – The second formula of Osho’s philosophy is that we always run away from our sorrows and responsibilities and always find excuses to escape from them. We always blame others for our mistakes and failures. We can never be happy by going away from reality. Osho says that human beings should not run away from their circumstances. Be it good or bad we should always face reality.

3 – In the third formula, Osho has explained that the reason for the misery of human is that he does not accept anything or person as much as it is. Instead, we connect our thoughts in everything, due to which he misses from becoming his part and thus he becomes miserable. Osho says that whatever is happening, let it be, there should be no obstruction in it.

4 – The fourth thread says that human beings are always in tension. The possibility of wandering and aggressive in it always remains hidden. He is not happy and happy. Osho says that human is an energy. If we suppress that energy then it will appear somewhere else in some other way, so we should not be repressed instead oriented towards creation.

5 – In the fifth case, Osho does not complain about God but says thanks to him. Osho questions that is there any human whose mind is not filled with complaints! Whether at home or office, god or relationship, we always do complaining. We always look at what we did not get. Osho says that we should always think that what we get and should stay happy in that.

6 – In the sixth formula, Osho has shown utility of meditation in our life. People have always been praying for the fulfillment of their desires, have given priority to various rituals. People find meditation as a dull or gloomy task, and often question that what benefits do you get from meditation? Osho has told meditation the most important thing in life. He considered meditation as the basis of life.

7 – The seventh formula emphasizes to change yourself not others. Actually the major reason behind every problem is our nature of blaming others. Osho says that we have the same attitude with our circumstances.

8 – The eighth formula teaches not to encroach but balance in life. Osho says that the desire for happiness is the root of all sorrows. Happiness also brings sorrow to you. According to Osho, if there is no happiness in getting anything then there will be pain of losing it, this state is called renunciation.

9 – This formula does not support religion but righteousness. Humans have linked their identity to their particular religions. He says classification of humans on religious basis only increases the difference in various groups of society. The result was that today religion is first, man and his humanity secondary. Osho says happiness is the nature of man, and there is no caste or religions of happiness.

10 – Tenth formula talks about to accept instead of tolerating. Since childhood, we are taught to endure. Tolerance is said to be a good quality. It has been repeated over the years that if everyone becomes tolerant then there can be peace on the earth not only on personal but also on global scale. But today’s result is in front of everyone. Osho is in favor of understanding but not in favor.

11 – In his Eleventh formula of Philosophy, Osho says that man is very strange, he believes and worships the things made of humanity, but never sees himself by lifting his eyes on the creation of God and nature in it. The truth is that to believe in God means ‘Yes’ for everything, it is a complete acceptance and this life is its living-awakened proof.

This is Philosophy of Osho – So, these were the eleven golden formulas of leading a happy life.

 

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MY WAY OF COPING WITH GRIEF: “Is this one of those Buddhist meditations?”


I just flew in to Chicago to see my Mom. She turned 80 on Friday. Five years ago, she was diagnosed with ovarian cancer and was given five years to live. Now my Dad is telling me, “I hope you have a suit and tie back in New York. You’re gonna have to come back […]

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There’s a Real Paradigm-Shifter!


Screen reader version:  While wandering, a pair of hikers with backpacks come across some old ruins, some of which are covered in hieroglyphics… but the largest piece of rock also has what appears to be a Halloween pumpkin’s face on top! One hiker says to the other, “Now, there’s a real paradigm-shifter.”   «RELATED READ» […]

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POEMS BY GEORGE CASSIDY PAYNE: The Way of Zen, Storytellers, Sensual Machine, The Plantation, Passing Through


The Way of Zen is to climb the flattest place on earth. To become a geologic paradox. To crack into the Earth, like a creative carving of erosion. The way of Zen is when fire meets ice, like a thundering waterfall made quiet by the sacred nature of rocks.   Storytellers You know we can […]

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How To Live ‘Heaven On Earth’: Purpose, Dreams And Love


You are all Kings and Queens of your world and living your version of paradise is your birthright. It is as natural to you as your breath. “Heaven” is not only a state of mind neither an abstract representation of some godly paradise located somewhere in the sky and the achievement of “Heaven on Earth” is definitely not a utopian idea. Heaven on Earth is, in fact, a very real and vivid way of living and creating a life for yourself and for those around you. In this post, I will give you a general picture of what living in “Heaven” looks like and show you the ways to get “there”. Three paths that if you commit to them, will lead you without the slightest question to your piece of paradise, making you live and experience your version of Heaven on Earth.

SEE ALSO: The Nature Of Suffering, According To Buddha

Living Heaven on Earth

Imagine waking up, opening your eyes and automatically an indescribable feeling of unconditional Love fills you up from within.  Every little cell of your body lightens up by this all-pervasive good feeling energy of Love, making you can feel a deep-rooted perfection and an undeniable knowing that “All is well” translated by your senses as a mixture of joy, peace, freedom, and the sensation of being right where you belong, of truly being Home.

In half of a second, the pervasiveness of that Love invades your mind, putting it at ease, massaging it, harmonizing it, aligning every single one of your thoughts, every single one of your perceptions, and all that you can think and see are thoughts of Love and perceptions of beauty.

“The human perception of this energy first begins with a heightened sensitivity to beauty.” – James Redfield

As you get up and walk through your surroundings, you get fascinated by every single portion of your environment.

The colors are more vivid and everything is highlighted with beauty. Every corner, every plant, every flower, every animal, every tree, every building, every piece of floor you step on, and every detail in every place, is magical, is special, is alive, has this beautiful energy and you can feel it.  It is your own energy, the energy of harmonized Love and perfection being reflected back to you at every step you take.

Your days unfold in a natural flow of ease, with a greater intelligence taking command and you are effortlessly lead to everything you need to do, to everywhere you need to be, to everyone you need to meet in a magical sequence of ever-unfolding synchronicities. And from your perspective it all looks like a continuous flow of fun, joy, inspiration, and excitement, generating moment after moment, event after event, place after place, connection after connection.

You always feel the King or Queen of your world and in raw truth; you are. And as the King or Queen you know yourself to be, you naturally see each and every person you meet as another amazing King or Queen. As you recognize your perfect and divine essence, you cannot escape but to recognize theirs. For, in truth, there is no “you” and there is no “them”. You are one and the same, and in that recognition, harmony is created and Love rules.

Your relationships are amazing, truly matches made in heaven; friends from the soul and lovers from the heart. What you see as soulmates and twin flames are with you, for they are the ones in this planet that resonate closer to your frequency and together, you become a portal of high frequencies of Love that are both present and channeled by you in every single one of your interactions. You are one with those you love and everywhere you go Heaven goes with you. In everything you do Heaven is reflected, and the world around you is uplifted by your mere presence, such is the power of true unity (unity consciousness).

The concepts of “hardship” and “work” have long been replaced by “purpose” and “passion”, as you live immersed in an ever-going stream of fun, expression, and creativity, connected to an infinite flow of abundance that takes care of every single one of your needs and desires for you. You feel bliss in every portion of your body, mind, and soul. You feel in Heaven all the time. It is like being constantly in love with everything and seeing that love reflected in your outside world, mirrored by the circumstances you find yourself in, in the places you visit, in the people you find yourself with, and in all the interactions and ways you choose to express yourself in.

Love, happiness, peace, joy, freedom, confidence, courage, power, passion, excitement, inspiration and perfection are the only feelings you now know. You live your dreams, you live your purpose and you live from the heart. And those are the 3 gateways that will lead you towards living the manifested reality of your personal Heaven on Earth.

(Note: I am not referring to any figurative or religious version of Heaven. I’m talking about the real experience of living your dreams, with unconditional love, in harmony, and with a real sense of purpose in your life.)

Live Your Purpose

Your life’s purpose is the intention out of which your life was created, the reason why you were born and the answer the deep question “Why am I here?” A lot of times your purpose can also be referred to as your “calling”. With different aspects and nuances, you are here to bring Heaven to Earth. Or in other words, your purpose is to create with your unique gifts and skills your unique version of what Heaven on Earth looks like. The life’s purpose is unique and specific to each person, like a perfect piece of a larger and perfect puzzle. By finding your life’s purpose (or calling) and living for and by it, you are walking the path that you came here to walk, you are doing what you came here to do, create Heaven on Earth.

Follow Your Dreams

“Perhaps the dream is more real than this reality we are living in now”, Timmy Trumpet – World Class DJ

Your dreams, not the ones you have when you are sleeping, but those that keep you awake! Awake with such joy and excitement that makes you want to quit your life and live only in your imagination are real. Yes, that vision you have for yourself and for your life that you call your dream is real. It is your Heaven on Earth and in another portion of your consciousness (Higher Self) you are already living it. So, to follow your dreams is to walk the direct path that will lead you to that vision, to that piece of Heaven that is yours by right.

“Dreams come from beyond you not right between your eyes. You have to every day of your life be ready to hear what whispers in your ear…If you can listen to the whisper and if it tickles your heart and It’s something you think you want to do for the rest of your life then that is going to be what you do for the rest of your life and we will benefit from everything you do. ” – Steven Spielberg

Listen to your dreams, pay attention to what they inspire you to become, follow that guidance day by day, hour by hour, minute by minute, moment by moment and almost without realizing, one day you wake up and your dreams will be all around you. You will wake up in your Heaven on Earth. Become your dreams, follow their guidance and you will create heaven.

Follow Your Heart

“You heart stays with you forever, so you better listen to what is as to say.” – Alexandra Michelle

In short terms, to follow your heart is to follow that unique resonance of love you have within you. Whatever it is that you love, not just enjoy, or like, but that truly makes your heart sing, is for you, is your truth and your gateway to your Heaven on Earth. Whatever it is that touches your heart and that you are passionate about is the way for you to be and the way for you to go. From people to places, to activities, to teachings, to anything, do more of and be more with what you love.

“Do what you Love, drop what you don’t.” – Bentinho Massaro

To live from the heart also means to trust and have faith in your heart. This love that I speak of, is a form of universal energy that is also a source of infinite intelligence, so to follow your heart you must trust your heart, and by that I mean to trust that inner guidance, your intuition, that loving essence and knowing that exists within you and is prior to your thinking mind (the ego). For your thinking mind is very limited in its perceptions and more times than not, what your heart guides you into makes no sense to the linear thought based thinking mind.

“When in doubt take your attention away from your mind an into your heart.” – Alexandra Michelle

In your Heaven on Earth you will be surrounded by Love from all angles and sides, in all areas and aspects of yourself and your life, so it makes perfect sense to start following your heart and the path of Love. Everything that you embark upon you amplifies, everything that you create you double, everything you follow you will get more of, to whatever you give energy to you will attract. Follow your heart and embark on the journey of Love with a deep certainty that Heaven on Earth will be your destiny.

In Conclusion

Your purpose, your dreams and the path of your heart are three ways of the same road. All of them contain the others and all of them will lead you towards the same destination, Heaven on Earth. By living your purpose, you will make your wildest dreams come true and you will live every second of your life surrounded with infinite and unconditional love. By following your dreams, you will be automatically be living your purpose and following the path of everything you Love. By following your heart, you will be lead towards the manifestation of all your dreams, for they are keystones of your purpose and of your journey towards the pure Love that you are and that you were born to create in life.

In truth, those three gateways or paths to Heaven on Earth, are in other words, three ways of being You! Three seemingly different facets of the same diamond and you are the diamond itself. You cannot separate one from the others in the same way you cannot separate water from its liquidity and wetness. Your purpose, your dreams, and your heart will change you, shape you, polish you like the diamond you are in all aspects of your being and in all areas of your life. You will grow, you will learn, you will change, and as you do, life will follow and become each and every time an exact reflection of who you are and what you need to create your Heaven on Earth. It’s quite a journey, a superhero one and the only journey that is worth living!

If not for your dreams, for Love and for the purpose of creating an amazing heaven-like world for everyone to live in, what is your life for? Heaven on Earth is the birthright of every single being walking on our planet and it is up to you to create your piece of it. And together, we will combine all of our pieces of heaven creating a world of true love, harmony, and unity; the world that we deep down know we are here to wake up to, Gaia – the new earth.

The post How To Live ‘Heaven On Earth’: Purpose, Dreams And Love appeared first on Sivana East.



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What Should You Look For in a Meditation Teacher?


For people looking to learn meditation, there are plenty of ways to be introduced to the practice, ranging from meditation teachers to online courses. Whether it’s a guided meditation on Youtube, a mindfulness app like Headspace or simple breathing exercises, technology and greater knowledge of meditation’s benefits have conspired to […]

The post What Should You Look For in a Meditation Teacher? appeared first on The Daily Meditation.



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Their Lives In My Hands, My Life In Their Hands


I remember being a teenager and listening to the rap song from Notorious BIG ‘Mo Money Mo Problems’.  The chorus of the song is: “I don’t know what they want from me.  It’s like the more money we come across, the more problems we see.” Yes, this is the point at which it shocks everyone that a spiritual figure (me) doesn’t only listen to ambient spiritual music and Indian flute.  In fact, I love rap.  I love rap played at full blast on a subwoofer.  I blame the fact that I have the same birthday as 2 Pac for this ? Anyway, I remember considering this idea that success; (especially fame in this case) had a downside.  But as a teenager, it was abstract for me at that time.  It was someone else expressing their struggle with the pressures of success.  This week, I caught myself carrying out the multiplicity of errands I had to run (every one of them caused by the complications of fame) with these lyrics running through my head on repeat.  This time, I had a whole new personal understanding of those lyrics. 
fame-Background-1024x514.jpgFame is an insurmountable pressure.  There are SO many problems that come with fame that it is no surprise that stars end up committing suicide or visiting rehab centers.  Problems like:

  • Never knowing for sure if someone is a friend of yours or just someone pretending to be, so as to catapult their own self-esteem or career manipulatively with your fame as the springboard.
  • Betrayal everywhere you look.  Never being able to fully trust people and being terrified to let anyone too close for fear that the second there is any conflict with them (an inevitability in relationships) they will run to the press or to your hate groups with the intimate things you trusted them with. 
  • Being a huge target for inevitable law suits carried out simply because people want to bring you down or because they want to blackmail you into paying them just so you can avoid a public scandal splashed all over the media.  Opposition of you is how they get a sense of significance and fame.
  • People provoking you in horrific ways just so they can get the headline they want.
  • Everything you say being taken out of context so as to paint the picture a specific journalist wants to paint of you.
  • Everything gets magnified.  If a normal person gets mad, it’s a person getting mad… which people do.  If someone famous gets mad, because of the social power they hold, they are seen as a nightmare.  This is even truer if they are a spiritual figure and therefore expected to be the example of non-reactivity.
  • Damned if you do damned if you don’t scenarios at every turn.  For example, if you don’t expose your personal life, they say you aren’t relatable.  If you do expose your personal life and become relatable, they discredit you as an authority and begin to give you advice.
  • Once you get big enough to hire a team of people, you now have the pressure of tons of other people on your shoulders.  You experience things like company politics, taking the fall for other people on the team making mistakes, managing people, expenses rising with every extra dollar you make, bringing with it the pressure to keep up with those expenses.  Not being able to grow at all unless those expenses are paid and therefore having to stay successful enough and in favor enough with fans to support not just you, but the lives of several other individuals and their families (just to name a few things).
  • corporate-security.jpgHaving to worry about security and have bodyguards because of the incredible amount of unstable personalities that become obsessed or haters, both of which are willing to kill if they are unstable enough.  
  • Because of the power that comes with fame, you become the projection of every person’s relationship to authority.  This especially means being the recipient of everyone’s displaced issues with, and unmet needs relative to, mom and dad.
  • You stop being seen and treated as human.  People say whatever they want about you and do whatever they want to you as if you were an object.  If you have feelings about it, people tell you “what do you expect?  This is what comes with fame.”
  • The ‘crab in the bucket’ syndrome is no joke.  When you get success, you meet with incredible opposition.  People with low self-esteem either idolize you, in which case it is impossible not to disappoint them one day.  Or they dedicate themselves to trying to knock you down and find fault with you so they can feel better about themselves in comparison to you.  If these people find validation through other people looking to do the same, you have a recipe for a whole hate group dedicated to taking you down in any way they can.  And this makes the world become very predatory. 
  • Being judged for being successful and people hating you for making money even more so than being judged for not being successful.  
  • Not being included by or treated as if you belong with people who you knew before you got famous.
  • Your kids growing up with totally abnormal lives and feeling intensely guilty for this.  This includes having their parent traveling all the time, having to hear everyone’s opinions about their parent, being condemned by virtue of association and having to grow up worrying about whether their parent is going to die.  This means people who have read bad press on the internet calling the police and child protective services to check up on your child.  This means all the parents at your kid’s school not allowing their kids to come play at your house and raising hell with the principal just in case what they read on the internet is true.  This means having to get security for your child due to threats you receive not just against you, but against your kids.
  • People assuming all kinds of things about you and your relationships that are absurdly and totally untrue.  They misinterpret things as well.  In many cases, you have no way to set the record straight.  Or you are in a damned if you do, damned if you don’t position relative to responding.  If you do set the record straight, you will spend your life answering to opposition instead of doing your job and people will condemn you for being defensive.  Or people take your lack of response as confirmation that what was assumed and stated is true.    
  • Slander works.  As if it isn’t hard enough to succeed without opposition, you will be faced with trying to succeed in spite of everyone else.  Honestly think back to standing in line at the grocery store.  When you see the headline “Angelina Cheats on Brad, The Babysitter Tells All”, either you buy the whole story hook line and sinker. After all it is someone close to the family (the babysitter) that said so.  Or you wonder whether it is true or not. It plants a seed.  Either way, it does affect the way you feel about the person because you now see them through the filter of that slander.  When you are famous, your reputation precedes you, whether it is true or not.  And you get to feel the tension of that filter that precedes you meeting with people all the time.     
  • Press and people who were close but decide to turn against you either intimately know or have a 6th sense for what hurts the most, your greatest weak spots and what you are the most sensitive about.  It is always that place that they choose to attack you.    
  • gallery_benedict-cumberbatch.jpgUnless you are in the mood to be ‘on stage’ and have every move you make or thing you wear scrutinized, you become a hermit.  
  • Fame is intensely, intensely isolating.  Your chance at having successful relationships goes down like crazy.  It is nearly impossible to find someone who is actually compatible to you because no one cares whether or not you are compatible to them.  So many people are with you simply because of the image they hold in their head of who they think you are and what they can get from you.  You become an accessory to someone else’s sense of self.  And worse than that, so many people who would be good friends or partners cannot handle the many pressures that come with fame and also the way it isolates you and they do not choose that kind of exposed and limited lifestyle for themselves, so they distance themselves from you.  It becomes too hard for a multitude of reasons to be friends with people who don’t understand and can’t handle the business and reality of fame.  As a result, you end up for self-preservation sake, having to associate primarily with other super successful and famous people, who are also isolating, distrusting and insanely busy.     

This is a very short list of some of the problems that come with fame.  And they are so painful it is ineffable.  As so many of the people around me in my close circle can tell you personally, it is something you only really get when you are on this side of it.  
spotlight.jpgTo be totally authentic, this last three years has been a real struggle for me in terms of the problems that come with fame.  The music and movie stars get their relationships and characters shredded.  But spiritual figures, much like politicians, are famous for their opinions.  This means not only will our relationships and characters be shredded; we will also be targeted and shredded for whether we help or harm people in general.  This not only destroyed my personal life, it also led to a rash of periodicals in places like The Guardian and Daily Mail that have created a level of controversy surrounding me that is so intense, many people are afraid to even associate with me at all.  

Way back in the day, when I was still seeing individual clients, I saw a woman named Leslie Wangsgaard whenever she felt the need for a visit.  I was very close to Leslie.  She was not only seeing me for help, she was also simultaneously under the care of a psychiatrist and on medication for anxiety, depression and suicidal thoughts.  I had a trip planned to go into the desert for a solar eclipse.  It was my first vacation in 4 years.  But in a heart crushing turn, that was the exact time that Leslie went into crisis and ended up killing herself.  When I got back into cell phone range, I had a few voicemails.  The first few were distress messages from both Leslie and her husband asking for a session with me at my earliest convenience.  Then, a desperate message from Leslie’s husband informing me that Leslie had killed herself with her prescription medication.  It was the first time I had ever been in a ‘mentor/guide’ position relative to someone that had committed suicide.  I had been told by psychologists that I knew before that time, that the day inevitably comes in every therapist’s career that someone you worked with will commit suicide and it makes you doubt the choice to become a therapist.  I am not a psychologist.  But I found out first hand exactly what they were taking about.  For three days, I fell into a career/purpose crisis.  Just like everyone else around Leslie, I searched for how I could have done something to prevent it.  I felt guilty that I hadn’t been there when she needed me.  I was very attached to her as a person and to her husband as well.

Unfortunately at that time, we had taken on a very unstable volunteer named Cameron Clark.  When the entire team decided Cameron was a liability because of her divisive and antagonistic, mentally disturbed behavior and needed to be sent home, Cameron turned against me and became one of my principal haters.  She went straight to anyone with a following who publicly attacked spiritual teachers looking for help to take me down.  She found assistance.  Unfortunately, the two weeks she stayed in the community was exactly during the time that Leslie committed suicide.  Cameron was in close enough vicinity to me to see me cry about Leslie’s death and express my regret that I had not been there when she went into crisis.  And so the first thing she did, going straight for my weak spot, was to create slander flyers that said “Leslie Ann Wangsgaard (birth date and death date)…  Goes to Teal for a session and commits suicide…  What would you think?”  This was where the slander rumor that equated me to a person that causes people to commit suicide began.  

teal swan.jpgOne hate article led to two and three, all of which took this same provocative angle.  When I addressed these claims, I went public with my opinions on suicide in general.  I went public not only as a spiritual mentor, but also having been someone who attempted suicide myself as a teen.  Pretty soon, regardless of the fact that I never intended for suicide to be my career focus, I developed a reputation for being a person who is specializing (and apparently in a controversial way) in suicide. Regardless of the fact that it is complete fallacy, people started treating me like an accessory to suicide.  


teal swan m.jpgBecause suicide is such a juicy headline, this has become a situation that has been the focus of nearly every interview.  Earlier this year, a writer for Gizmodo Media Group (which is operated by the Media group that bought out Gawker when it went into bankruptcy losing a law suit for its slander against Hulk Hogan) posed as a neutral journalist looking to cover my story.  Instead, this writer wrote an investigative piece and several podcasts that were so biased against me that I had other journalists contacting me to apologize for the lack of professional journalism of their colleague and to request interviews to do more balanced periodicals.  He did interviews with several experts, such as doctors involved with The Completion Process, in which out of the hours of positive things they had to say, he would extract the one thing they would say that could cast doubt in people’s minds and include that alone in the podcast.  Our team trusted him and gave him all the information and access he asked for.  While he pretended to be an ally, it was all spun against me in the end.  To put it mildly, if I first heard about me from his podcast, I would think I was a monster.  But the most important thing to know about this journalist is that he too chose the juicy angle of posing the idea that I harm people because of my approach to suicide.  What has happened in the wake of this article has led to a situation that has shocked every member of our team. 


suicide.jpgNo one wants to talk about controversial things like suicide.  It is easier to just wash your hands clean of things and refer people to a suicide hotline.  But I have talked about it.  I talked about it in response to this chain reaction that started with Cameron Clark’s absurd strategy to take me down with what would really hurt years ago.  I talked about it not only for the sake of my own career, but also because people who are suicidal have no advocates and we are approaching suicidal ideation in the wrong way precisely because people do not understand suicidal people and therefore do not understand how to approach them.  Getting a degree in psychology or psychiatry from a classroom in a college does not mean that someone can understand the mental and emotional state of someone who is suicidal.  As a result, the approaches to suicide prevention that exist in the world today are not adequate.  Unfortunately, I had to find this out personally back when I was trying to get help for it and literally kept running into either no help or ‘professionals’ making it worse no matter how much they meant well.  Now, I am facing three problems.

  1. My haters have seen this as a great leverage tool to take me down.   The media craze around me and suicide specifically has created a situation where now on a weekly basis, we receive threats that people will kill themselves so as to take me down. 
  2. My very manipulative fans who are partial to victim control drama are using it now as a way to force me into doing what they want.  They are threatening that if I don’t let them stay at my retreat center Philia or solve their problems, they will commit suicide, so I have to help them personally or do what they want if I don’t want more bad press relative to suicide and blood on my hands.
  3. I am one of the only people in the field of health and wellness being associated with suicide and directly addressing it with my opinion on how it should be approached.  As a result, now suicidal people who are actually in need of help are flocking to my workshops and retreats in droves.  I both love this because I do want to help people who are struggling with suicidal ideation and hate this because of the insane liability it poses.  What happens if someone who was suicidal comes to me for help but commits suicide?  Am I to be blamed for it?  It quite literally feels like I have been made responsible for people’s lives and deaths.  

What-to-Do-With-Unengaged-Subscribers.jpgThe honest truth that no one wants to admit is that no one in the mainstream mental health field knows what to do with suicidal people and it is an epidemic in the world today.  It is such a problem that even the government is trying to figure out what to do.  If you drug suicidal people, it doesn’t deal with the underlying problem and so many of the people who commit suicide are on prescribed mental health medication already.  So the medication itself isn’t the solution.

If someone goes into the hospital when they are suicidal, it costs them an arm and a leg financially (at least in America) so people are looking at an even worse life on the other side of being released than before they went in.  It may get someone past a crisis.  But no one can turn the underlying issues creating suicidal ideation around in a day or a week stay in a hospital.  So inevitably, they return.  On top of that, so many of the people who commit suicide never say a thing to anyone about it and simply kill themselves.  Those who try to get help for it are not wanting to die.  They are wanting help to get out of pain, which they feel totally powerless to do.

On top of that, so few crisis hotline interventionists and psychologists have dealt with being suicidal or tried to commit suicide themselves.  As a result, they approach suicidal mentality from the outside looking in.  This does not work.  For example, there is nothing worse than hearing words of hope from someone when you are suicidal.  Telling someone who is suicidal that there is a good reason to live or that suicide is the easy way out or reminding them that it destroys people around them is a death sentence. 
I so badly want to change the way that the mental health field approaches suicidal individuals.  I so badly want to help people who are in this space that I was in.  But I do not want my entire mission brought down because someone who came to me for help decides to commit suicide.  I would love for someone to see me as a key factor for why they did not commit suicide.  But is it fair to make someone, whether it is a psychologist or psychiatrist or life coach or spiritual leader  responsible for whether someone decides to take their own life?
authority-vs-responsibility1.jpgIn the 1980s, some of Osho’s disciples established Rancho Rajneesh.  It was essentially an intentional community of his, consisting of people who followed his teachings, in Oregon.  The local community was really upset by the idea of a religious community, which they saw as a cult, moving into the area.  Some tolerated it, others were absolutely up in arms determined to prevent the commune from establishing itself there.  Multiple legal battles ensued.  Some of his unstable followers decided in response to frustration regarding the opposition they were met with, to carry out a biological attack in 1984, the year I was born.  They deliberately contaminated the salad bars at several local restaurants in order to incapacitate the people who would vote against them so their own candidates would win the Wasco County Elections.  751 people were infected.  That was meant to be simply a trial run before infecting the entire water system.  Because of their association with Osho, Osho was placed under investigation for the crime and faced being charged with the crime.  Because there was no evidence to prove he knew about any of it, he was not arrested for the poisoning.  Instead, he was arrested for immigration violation.  For people, like myself, who are leading a spiritual movement, we live in terror of situations like Osho got himself into.  We live in terror of being unable to control what other people in our following do and don’t do, but being made responsible for it.

As a result of this press campaign against me, I live in fear of being unable to control whether someone ultimately decides to take their life, but being made responsible for it.  I live in fear that I will be blamed for not being able to prevent it.  I live in fear that I will be accused of somehow contributing to someone’s decision to do it, even though my aim is to help someone want to live.  I live in fear that a hater of mine, or someone who turns against me, will try to take down my career in this insanely aggressive move to “kill two birds with one stone” (what the last person who threatened us actually threatened to do).  I live in fear that someone will kill themselves if I don’t do what they want me to do, which is to take them into my retreat center as an act of charity/implied duty.  They want me to be totally responsible for them financially and emotionally, which is something I cannot do.  I cannot afford to take in suicidal people as if they were stray cats or orphaned children as much as I wish there were somewhere in the world that could do this.  I also know that when I refer them to the hospital or suicide crisis hotline (which I do if someone is actively threatening in a crisis to commit suicide, as opposed to trying to get help with their chronic suicidal thoughts or feelings) it solves nothing long term and usually traumatizes them further.  This is an issue that no one really has a good solution for.  But I am curious if anyone has any thoughts to share in the comments below this blog. 
taboo.jpg

While all of this terrifies me (and the whole team to be honest), it has also inspired me.  The unexpected avalanche of focus on suicidality in general has made me aware of just how much this issue needs to be talked about and needs to cease to become taboo.  It is a serious subject.  But if it continues to be taboo, and continues to be a subject we all want to avoid in order to stay safe and emotionally clean, the people who so desperately need help with it will never get the help they need.  Metaphorically speaking, the blood will be on all of our hands.  For this reason, I will continue to speak about it.  I will continue to speak about it, hoping that people will see that I am an advocate of a life worth living for those who feel like I once felt… That all life is, is suffering. 

winston-churchill-make-life-worth-living-qu-on-the-key-to-immortality-is-first-living-a-life-worth-rememberi.jpg



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