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Chapter 80

It is December 11 and Osho's birthday celebration has been arranged in the living room of the Woodlands' apartment. The whole room is over-packed and lots of friends are standing in the staircase as well. The main entrance door of the apartment is kept open.

Osho comes out of His room, namastes everyone and sits on the chair in His usual posture, His right leg resting on top of His left. We all sit down on the floor. He looks very radiant today. For a moment, there is pin drop silence, then He speaks for nearly an hour about the tradition of celebrating birthdays. I hear Him say, "The day you are born, the death process starts. Each day you are living and dying simultaneously. Unless you know your inner source of life, which is never born and will never die, you suffer the agony of birth and death." He talks about death in such detail. While listening to it, my sadness starts disappearing into the vast empty space inside me.

After discourse, Kirtan (devotional songs and chanting) starts and one by one, friends come forward touch His feet, take prasad (sweets distributed on His birthday) and walk out to make space for others.

Many friends have brought gifts for Osho and here I am sitting with empty hands and empty heart to receive the gift from my master. When the celebration is over Osho gets up from the chair, namastes everyone and walks towards His room very slowly and gracefully. I have never seen Him in a hurry. He looks always at home wherever He is. By and by people start leaving but I stay seated with the longing to see Him again in His room. After a while, I am allowed to go into His room. As I open the door I see Him sitting on his chair reading a book. Seeing me walk in He puts the book aside and chuckles at me. I touch His feet and sit on the floor near His chair. He says, "You look good today". I reply, "Yes Osho, I am feeling very happy today. All my sadness has disappeared after listening to your talk on birth and death." He places His hand on my head and my chattering mind stops for a moment. When He takes His hand away I look up into His eyes. He smiles and asks if I have something to say. Suddenly my unconscious desire bubbles up and I tell Him, "Osho, it is your birthday, I want a gift from you."

He chuckles and asks Kranti to get a shawl for me from His cupboard. Handing over to me His shawl, He says, get it dyed in orange color and wear it while meditating." I take this precious gift in both hands and walk out of the room with my heart dancing in joy.


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