Death: The Climax of Life
Osho on Death
WHAT IS THE GOAL OF LIFE AND HOW CAN IT BE ACHIEVED?
The camels are very difficult people! Whatever you do to them, somehow or other they will express their camelhood. My whole life I have been telling you there is no goal!
Life is its own goal. There is nothing outside life that you have to achieve. All achievement is the projection of the ego. The very idea of achievement is ambition. What you achieve does not matter — money, power, knowledge; these are not in any way going to give you life. In fact, in achieving power, in achieving money, in achieving prestige, in achieving any other ambition, you are losing your life, you are sacrificing your life.
You are involved in stupid things, and by the side life goes on slipping out of your hands. You will realize it only at the time of death, with a shock: “I have been trying to achieve the goal of life and I forgot life itself.” The goal is always in the future, and life is always here. The goal is always far away, and life is in this very moment. Trying to achieve it, you will miss it. You don’t need to try to achieve life: you are alive. Only dead people can have goals. Living people live. If you want goals to achieve, the grave is the right place for you. Just lie down in the grave. Of course a very big grave will have to be made for you — you are a camel still. Rest in death.
I have heard: a husband — naturally, a henpecked husband, because I don’t know another kind…. Everybody understands it: you want to be a husband, soon you will be a henpecked husband — that is a natural growth. This henpecked husband died. The wife ordered a beautiful marble grave for him, and ordered that his name should be written in golden letters with the words: “Rest in peace.” But when the will of the husband was opened… he had given all his money, land, house — everything — to charitable institutions. Nothing for the wife! That was his revenge — because a husband can take revenge only when he is dead. His whole life the woman had tortured him; now was his time!
Listening to the will, she rushed to the craftsman who was making the marble grave, and she said to him, “You have to add a few words more.”
He said, “But this is enough!”
She said, “No. It was enough before I came to know his will. Now write: Rest in Peace — till I come!”
You have a little time to rest in the grave! There you can imagine all kinds of goals because you will not be losing anything; you are already dead. But while living be a little more kind to yourself.
While living, live. And live intensely and totally!
In India, I used to go to Ahmedabad, where I had the greatest number of sannyasins. In Ahmedabad I used to like only one place, and that was the place where Jayantibhai, who used to be my driver, would speed beyond the limit permitted. And I would say, “Why do you do it? I like this place!”
He would say, “That’s why I speed here: I don’t want you to remember Ahmedabad because of this thing!”
And what was the thing? There was a board on the bridge saying: `Livva little hot — Sippa Gold Spot!’ And certainly I have forgotten everything about Ahmedabad, but this `Livva little hot …’ I cannot forget. This is the very essence of my religion: Livva little hot! Forget about Gold Spot! There is no gold anywhere. Existence is not moving to some target.
And it is good that it is not moving towards some goal, because if the goal is there, sooner or later it will be achieved. Then what? Existence is more intelligent than camels think. It has no goal, so it goes on and on — an unending, infinite process. So
drop the idea of goal from your mind completely, it is very destructive. It is the cancer of your soul. Live the moment that is available to you.
And you never get two moments together, remember. Existence wants you to be so intelligent and sharp and quick that it gives you only one moment at a time. Just a little thought, a little goal, a little desire — and it is gone, you have missed it.
To live in the moment needs a thoughtless awareness, because even a small thought is bigger than the smallest atom of time — the moment.
Hence my insistence on meditation. It is nothing but a method to drop thoughts and to be available to the present moment. Live it as deeply as possible. The next moment will be born out of this moment. If you have lived this moment totally, intensely, your next moment is going to be still more golden. And that’s how life goes on growing — otherwise people only grow old. If you have a goal you will grow old. If you don’t have a goal you will grow up. And these are two different processes. Growing old you reach to death; that is the goal. Growing up you transcend death, because a man who has been alert, aware, in each moment, he will be capable of being aware even while he is leaving the body. He has lived life, he is not going to miss death either; he will live death too. And death for the man of awareness is the ultimate peak of life.
It is not the end but the very climax.
To the goal-oriented man life comes to an end in death — naturally, because now he cannot have any goal. A goal needs the future. The future is finished, death has come, and he has wasted his whole life for some goal. But the tomorrow never comes. And naturally he is shocked that he has wasted his whole life, and this is the goal he has achieved: dying. The shock of death makes him even more unconscious than he has ever been. Almost everybody before death goes into a coma, becomes unconscious. He has missed life; he cannot experience the climax of life — which is death. Only a man of awareness realizes a tremendous phenomenon:
death comes to him as the ultimate orgasm. In his awareness he passes death without dying. He becomes aware of eternity. Now he knows he has always been here, and he will always be here. He is part of an eternal existence.
But the goal-oriented people are the most idiotic ones.
This is an excerpt from the transcript of a public discourse by Osho in Buddha Hall, Shree Rajneesh Ashram, Pune.
Discourse Series: From Death to Deathlessness
Chapter title: You are born as freedom
28 August 1985 am in Rajneeshmandir
Osho has spoken on ‘death, life, awareness, meditation’ in many of His discourses. More on the subject can be referred to in the following books/discourse titles:
- Bodhidharma: The Greatest Zen Master
- A Bird on the Wing
- The Mustard Seed: My Most Loved Gospel on Jesus
- Vigyan Bhairav Tantra, Vol 1, 2
- Yoga: The Alpha and the Omega, Vol 4
- And Now, And Here, Vol 1
- The Path of the Mystic
- The Revolution
- The Art of Dying
- The Osho Upanishad
- Tao: The Pathless Path, Vol 1
- Zen: The Path of Paradox
- The Last Testament, Vol 1, 2