Friendliness: An Overflowing Love

International Friendship Day

International Friendship Day is celebrated in various countries around the world to share the love and spirit of friendship with each other as a community. While International Friendship Day is observed on 30 July each year, numerous countries have designated different dates to commemorate this day – such as, in India, friendship day is celebrated on the first Sunday of August of each year.

Friendship is a true relation, a bond during good and bad times, living life moments together, playing, fighting, enjoying, enforcing, expecting and all other sides of life. As per Osho Friendship is good but not much beautiful because it is possessive, restrictive and gives boundaries. Osho shares His views on friendliness which is even higher value than friendship. But we have to start from friendship only and with time through understanding and awareness friendliness arrives. Friendship is a seed, given the proper water, sunlight and soil of awareness, the flower of friendliness arises.

Osho speaks about friendship, “Friendship is something immensely valuable. Love tends to be possessive; friendship is non-possessive love. Friendship is all that is good in love minus that which is not good. Friendship is the very essential core of love. To rise to friendship is really a great spiritual growth. People fall in love, and people rise in friendship. And whenever a love relationship becomes a friendship it is a rare, beautiful phenomenon, it is unique. It is very difficult….

A love relationship is a love/hate relationship; either it is love or it is hate. It is immediately hate, the hate is very close by. Love simply moves between love and hate. It is like a pendulum going from left to right and from right to left, and lovers are continuously moving from love to hate, from hate to love. That is the misery of lovers.

Friendship is a more tranquil affair, as if the pendulum has stopped in the middle, it is moving no more. Real love becomes friendship, has to become. If it doesn’t, something unreal, pseudo, phony, is still there. Real love soars high; it becomes non-possessive. And unless it becomes non-possessive it has no spiritual quality in it; it is earthy. It is more or less a physical phenomenon, a physical attraction, nothing more than that… no spiritual communion. Friendship is spiritual communion.

So remember that all love has to be transformed into friendship. And friendship is very inclusive; it can include the whole. Love is narrow; friendship is a wide sky. You can have as many friends as you want. You cannot have as many lovers, unless your love has become friendship; unless love is also friendship it will be impossible.

Love becomes a bondage and friendship becomes a freedom. That’s the beauty of it and the benediction of it…”

Osho Says….

AND A YOUTH SAID, SPEAK TO US OF FRIENDSHIP.

The very word “friendship” is not of the heights — the word “friendliness” rises to the moon, to the sun — because the word “friendship” is just of the mind. It is confining — you can be in friendship with only a few people. But friendliness is vast; you can be friendly to the trees, to the mountains, to the stars. Friendship is hiding a bondage too. All words like “relationship,” “friendship,” are superficial. Lovingness, friendliness, have a totally different meaning. When you are talking about friendship it is a very small thing — a kind of bondage, and dependence on the person with whom you feel the friendship. But friendliness is freedom — you are not dependent on anybody.

Friendship is objective, and friendliness is your love shared unconditionally with the whole existence. They don’t mean the same thing. Friendship can become any moment its opposite — the so-called friend can turn into your enemy. But friendliness has no particular address. It is not for anybody, it is for the whole existence. It can never turn into its opposite. Remember, that which can turn into its opposite very easily — and you know friends become enemies, enemies become friends — is very superficial, a false substitute. But friendliness is not addressed to anyone; it is the love overflowing within you, unconditionally. There is no possibility of it turning bitter — you are the master of it. In friendship you are not the master. Friendship is like marriage, an artificial thing, but friendliness is your very nature.

AND A YOUTH SAID, SPEAK TO US OF FRIENDSHIP.

AND HE ANSWERED, SAYING:

YOUR FRIEND IS YOUR NEEDS ANSWERED.

This is an ugly statement, but it is a logical consequence because he has not changed the basic question. He should have told the youth that friendship is worthless; friendliness is invaluable…. your friend is your needs answered. I say it again: it is ugly, because friendship is demanding.

Friendliness simply gives its fragrance to all without any exception — and it is fulfilled in giving it. It is not a need; it is an overflowing love.

You can be friendly with the trees, you can be friendly with the stars, but there is no demand, no condition. Of course your needs will be fulfilled, but not because you have been demanding. Your friendliness will bring you tremendous treasures. Make a clear distinction between these two words. Friendship is a prison. Friendliness is absolute freedom. You give out of your abundance; it is not a need.

Of course, existence understands that the person who is giving without any demands is a rare being. Existence takes care of your needs, but they are not demanded. Even if it does not fulfill your needs, it simply shows that deep down in your unconscious you are clinging to the idea of friendship. Only fools can be deceived just by changing the words. Existence is so abundant; just don’t ask…

Love is not a business. Love is the song of your soul. Friendliness is the fragrance of that love, and winds will carry it over the seas, over the mountains to the faraway stars. Love is not getting. Love is giving — and so is friendliness.

HE IS YOUR FIELD WHICH YOU SOW WITH LOVE AND REAP WITH THANKSGIVING.

Sounds good; Kahlil Gibran is a genius in finding beautiful words, but he knows nothing. Even behind his beautiful words and poetry there is darkness, unconsciousness. He is your field…. A friend is your field? You are going to exploit the field by sowing with love? It does not matter — your love is not for the friend, your love is for reaping the crop. And reap with thanksgiving…. It will be very strange to you that friends are one soul in two bodies. There is no question of thanksgiving, it is understood in silence. It is not the ugly “thank you,” which is just a formality. And… SOW WITH LOVE…. You are going to exploit the friend. How can you sow with love? Your love is a facade, a bribe, a persuasion — because of your love the friend will become a field for you. But your real interest is sowing the seeds and reaping the crop, and your thanksgiving is empty. If the friend has not given you anything, your thanksgiving will disappear.

Hence I say to you: Give, share with love, with no desire in your heart lurking anywhere for return, and the question of thanksgiving then takes a new dimension. You are thankful that the friend received your love, received your songs, received your abundance. You should be thankful not because you have received from the friend; you should be thankful that he has not rejected. He had every right to reject. He was humble and he was understanding. Feel grateful, but for a totally different reason…

WHEN YOUR FRIEND SPEAKS HIS MIND YOU FEAR NOT THE “NAY” IN YOUR OWN MIND, NOR DO YOU WITHHOLD THE “AY.”

Why should one be afraid of a friend? — then what are you going to do with the enemy? So when the friend speaks his mind, don’t be afraid to say “no,” because he will understand. And…nor do you withhold the “ay.” What is friendliness? If you cannot expose your heart, naked, in friendliness then you are a cunning businessman. You think of profit, you think of future, you think of the response. Although you are feeling to say no, you are afraid that the friendship will be destroyed by your no. And he is your need, he is your board, he is your field… are you a cannibal?

It shows the secrets of a cunning mind: Say yes when you know that he will be happy, say no only when you are certain that he will be happy. You are not being honest, straightforward. If you cannot be honest with a friend, with whom are you going to be honest? That’s why I say: friendliness is a far greater and higher value. It can say no without any fear, because it knows the friend will understand, and he will be grateful to you that you were not deceiving him. Friendliness means: standing exposed to each other, because you have a trust. Friendship is a very poor thing…

ALL EXPECTATIONS ARE BORN AND SHARED, WITH JOY THAT IS UNACCLAIMED.

Love or friendliness have no expectations. That is the beauty of friendliness — you don’t expect anything, because wherever there is expectation, just behind it, like a shadow, is frustration. And you cannot dictate to the future; you don’t even know what the future is going to be…

Where you will land tomorrow nobody knows. Any promise is irreligious, because it shows a stupid mind that cannot understand the future. A religious person can neither expect — because that too is concerned with the future — nor can he promise, because that too is concerned with the future. The religious person lives in the moment. But he says, “When expectations from your friend….”

WHEN YOU PART FROM YOUR FRIEND, YOU GRIEVE NOT;

FOR THAT WHICH YOU LOVE MOST IN HIM MAY BE CLEARER IN HIS ABSENCE.

There is some truth in it. Human mind is such that we start taking everything for granted, so only in absence do we become aware that that was our foolishness — to take something for granted. We live our whole lives without friendliness, without love, because we had taken it for granted: “It is always somebody else who dies; I’m always alive.” So you can postpone living. And everybody is postponing living, not knowing what the future contains for you.

I again insist and emphasize: Don’t take anything for granted. Live in the moment.

And living in the moment will give you the strength to live in any other moments — if there is going to be a future. Your strength will go on growing. Otherwise… it is sad that there are many people who, when they are dying, realize for the first time, “My God, I was alive for seventy years but I went on postponing. And now there is no future to postpone to.” Never give any promises, because you may not be able to fulfill them. Make it clear, “I am not the owner of the future.” But there are people who are promising about everything. To their lovers they are saying, “I will love you forever.” These are the promises that become their imprisonments.

Say to your friends, to your lovers, “Only one moment is given to me at a time; not even two moments are given together. So this moment I can say absolutely that I love you, but for tomorrow it is impossible to say that I will love you. Yesterday I was not in love with you. Tomorrow perhaps the fragrance of love, just as it came without any advance notice, may leave. Then I will be in bondage to my own promise, ashamed of my own words.” Promising, keeping your word… the whole humanity has imprisoned itself. Live, and live totally, but now — because that is all that you have, for certain, in your hand.

But I know the stupid minds of people. If you say to a woman, “I promise that I will love you this moment, but I cannot say about the next moment. Neither do I want any expectations from you, nor will I give any expectations to you; otherwise life is going to be a continual frustration….”

AND LET THERE BE NO PURPOSE… SAVE THE DEEPENING OF THE SPIRIT.

But that too is a purpose. Sometimes people who have such clear eyes about everything in the world are absolutely unconscious about what they are saying. First he says: and let there be no purpose in friendship save the deepening of the spirit… but that too is a purpose. In fact if there is no purpose, the deepening of the spirit will happen of its own accord. It need not be mentioned; otherwise the sentence becomes contradictory. The first part and the second part are contradictory. First he says: your friend is your needs answered… and now he says, “There should be no purpose in friendship.” But what are your needs except purposes?

Every purpose destroys the beauty of friendliness. Friendliness should have no purposes, no needs — although this is a miracle of life, that if you have no purposes, no needs, your needs will be fulfilled, your purposes will be fulfilled. But that should not be in you mind; otherwise you don’t have the friendliness, you don’t have love.

FOR LOVE THAT SEEKS AUGHT BUT THE DISCLOSURE OF ITS OWN MYSTERY IS NOT LOVE BUT A NET CAST FORTH: AND ONLY THE UNPROFITABLE IS CAUGHT.

…love that seeks aught but the disclosure of its own mystery is not love… because love is a mystery, and there is no way to make it open.

Love is like the roots of the trees, hidden deep in the earth. Share the fragrance, the flowers, the foliage, the greenery, but don’t try to pull out the tree to see from where it is getting so many colors, so much fragrance, so much beauty, because that will be the death of the tree. The roots have to remain hidden, secret, a mystery — not that you want… but you cannot go against the laws of nature. Share your fragrance, share your flowers. Dance in the moon, in the wind, in the rain. Have you seen this morning? — all the trees were so happy, dancing in the rain, throwing all the dust away, becoming fresh and young again. But the roots have to remain mysterious. Once you expose the roots, love is going to die.

And it is unfortunate that every lover, every friend, is very curious to know your mystery, to know your secret. Lovers are fighting continually, saying, “You are hiding something.” Thousands of years… and man has come to conclude that it is impossible to understand the mystery of a woman, because she has deeper roots in the earth. Men’s eyes are fixed towards the sky. It is idiotic — the effort to reach the moon. Now the effort is to reach Mars. You are not able to live on this beautiful earth with peace and silence, with love, without boundaries of nations, without discriminations of color, without making half of the humanity — the woman — just a purchased prostitute, a life-long prostitute. You have not been able to figure out how to live on the earth, and your eyes are fixed on the moon.

Do you know that in English there is a word “lunatic”? It comes from the root “lunar.” Lunar means “the moon.” Man is a lunatic. In fact, to try to find out the mystery of your lover is being just as ugly as all Peeping Toms are.

Nature does not want you to be demystified, because it is in mystery that love blossoms, friendliness dances. It is good that neither men understand women, nor women understand men. There is no need for knowledgeability. What is needed is enough space for each other, so that your secrets and your mysteries remain hidden. It is because of that mystery that you have fallen in love. If you demystify the woman, the love may also disappear. Knowledge is so meaningless, and mystery is so profound. Wonder about the mystery, but never question what it is; your friendliness, your love will know no bounds. The closer you will be, the more the mystery will go on deepening…

AND LET YOUR BEST BE FOR YOUR FRIEND.

… And let your best be for your friend… but tastes differ. What is best for you may be worthless for your friend. Who are you to decide what is best for him? I will not say that. I will say, “Open your heart and allow the friend; whatsoever he choses is his…”

FOR WHAT IS YOUR FRIEND THAT YOU SHOULD SEEK HIM WITH HOURS TO KILL?

All friends are doing that — they are killing each others’ hours, because they are both empty, and they don’t know how to be alone, how to enjoy being alone…

SEEK HIM ALWAYS WITH HOURS TO LIVE.

FOR IT IS HIS TO FILL YOUR NEED, BUT NOT YOUR EMPTINESS.

Do you understand what I am saying… the pendulum? But Kahlil Gibran himself is not aware that one statement is contradicting the other statement immediately. For it is his to fill your need — What happened about expectations? What happened about profit? He has forgotten, it seems — but not your emptiness. This is something to be understood — that man’s greatest need is not to be empty, not to be dark, not to be alone. His greatest need is to be needed. If nobody needs him he becomes more and more aware of his emptiness. So even this single sentence is contradictory. For it is his will…for it is his to fill your need… but is not emptiness your greatest need? For what are you continually engaged? — just so that you don’t feel empty. You are empty. The East has a far more profound answer: that the emptiness need not be negative. Don’t fill it with all kinds of rubbish. Emptiness can becomes you temple filled with godliness. Still it will be empty, because godliness is on a quality. Fill it with light — still it will be empty. Fill it with silence….

Transform the negative emptiness into a positive phenomenon, and you have done a miracle to yourself…

AND IN THE SWEETNESS OF FRIENDSHIP LET THERE BE LAUGHTER, AND SHARING OF PLEASURES.

But how? You have destroyed man’s capacity even to smile. And if you want — the idea is good — then tell people how they can resurrect their life, their laughter, their dancing, their sharing of pleasures. All the religions are against pleasures. No religion has talked about sharing but: “Give to the poor, because in return you will receive one-thousandfold more after death.” This is pure business! In fact, even to call it business is wrong; it is gambling. No church, no synagogue, no temple would allow people to laugh, to dance, to sing. You have crushed man’s spirit so completely that he is almost a corpse…

FOR IN THE DEW OF LITTLE THINGS THE HEART FINDS ITS MORNING AND IS REFRESHED.

No religion allows you pleasure; no religion allows you laughter; no religion allows you to enjoy the little things of life. On the contrary, they condemn every little thing — small things. And life consists of small things. Religions talk about God, but not about flowers; they talk about paradise, but not about nourishing food; they talk about all kinds of pleasures in heaven, but not on the earth. The earth is a punishment. You have been thrown to earth the way somebody is thrown into a jail.

Kahlil Gibran is great in his words, but something of the coward is present in his unconscious; otherwise he should have also added, “Those who are teaching otherwise are not your friends, they are your enemies. All religions are enemies of man, all priests are enemies of man, all governments are enemies of man.” But you will not find a single sentence like that. That’s why he is respected all over the world — because he has not annoyed anybody. I am saying the same things, but filling the gaps that he has left out, changing the words that he is unaware of. He is a beautiful man, but not courageous. He is still a sheep, not a shepherd; a sheep, not a lion. He should have roared like a lion — because he had the capacity. But a great man has died without even getting his books listed by the Polack pope on his black list — that no Catholic should read these books.

All my books are on the black list. To read them is a direct and short-cut way to go to hell. In fact, I am perfectly happy that you will all be with me in hell. We will transform it into heaven. And one day you will find God knocking on the door, saying, “Please let me in. I am bored and tired of all kinds of idiots.”

Source:

This is an excerpt from the transcript of a public discourse by Osho in Gautam Buddha Hall, Shree Rajneesh Ashram, Pune, India.

Discourse series: The Messiah, Vol 2

Chapter #7

Chapter title: Friendliness rises higher than love

23 January 1987 am in Chuang Tzu Auditorium

References:

Osho has spoken on ‘friendship, freedom, love’ in many of His discourses. More on the subject can be referred to in the following books/discourses:

  1. Beyond Psychology
  2. The Dhammapada: The Way of the Buddha, Vol 6
  3. The Empty Boat
  4. From Ignorance to Innocence
  5. The Messiah, Vol 1, 2
  6. Satyam Shivam Sundram
  7. Zarathustra: A God That Can Dance
  8. Zen: Zest, Zip, Zap and Zing
  9. The Rebel
  10. The Path of the Mystic
  11. The Book of Wisdom
  12. From Bondage to Freedom
  13. The Rebellious Spirit

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