From Darkness to Light 22

TwentySecond Discourse from the series of 30 discourses - From Darkness to Light by Osho.
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What is truth? And whatever it is, why are most people not interested in it?
The way the question is formed says more than is apparent. The first thing it says is that you are not interested in truth at all. It is strange that sometimes the formulation of the question has much more significance than the question itself.
You are asking: “What is truth? and whatever it is….” Does this show any inquiry? Does it mean that you are committed to seek and search for truth? If it were so, you could not have said “whatever it is.” It shows such an indifference, just like government office letters – “whomsoever it may concern.”
“Whatever it is…?” It makes no difference to you. And you are asking why people are not interested in it. Why blame people? Why can’t you be sincere and say, “why am I not interested in it?” Who are these people you are talking about? What concern do you have about these people? They don’t have any names; it is just a word, empty: people.
With me be honest, be sincere, be direct. Don’t bring anonymous people into the question. The question has to be yours. You are asking for an answer, and the question is not even yours. And how is it possible to answer you when the question belongs to “people”? Who are these people? I don’t know, and I don’t think you know either.
A question has to be individual, then it is alive; and I can answer only an alive question. A dead question deserves only a dead answer. I am incapable of doing that.
So first, remember always the question must be your quest.
The question must arise from the depths of your heart; it must be rooted in your being.
It must be nourished by your life; then it deserves an alive answer.
You ask me, what is truth? This is the greatest question ever asked. And you ask it in such a stupid way, you put the ultimate question in such a silly form. This is simply unawareness, unconsciousness. You don’t know what you are doing, what you are saying; You don’t know what you are asking, and why you are asking.
What business is it of yours to be bothered about unknown people? Are you in a state where no question of your own exists? Have you dropped all your questions? If that had been the case there would have been no need to ask this question either, because you would have known the answer.
When all questions disappear, that consciousness, that questionless consciousness, is the answer, is the truth.
The question is yours but you are a coward: you cannot even accept your ignorance. Of course, to accept that “this is my question” certainly means that you are an ignorant person; hence the question is thrown on the shoulders of some unknown people. I cannot find those people anywhere. Neither can you. Consciousness never exists in collectivities: people, nation, society, culture, civilization. You will not find these things anywhere; they don’t exist.
Whenever and wherever you come across “people”, you will come across the individual. That is solid reality. And “people” can’t have any questions. The “people” don’t have any soul, the “people” is only a collective name.
It is just like a forest. From far away you can see the forest but as you come closer and closer the forest starts disappearing. When you are exactly in the forest there is no forest, there are only trees. You will come across trees and trees and trees; unique trees, individual, having their own world; their own foliage, their own fragrance.
You cannot find even two trees exactly the same in the whole so-called forest. What to say about the forest? – even two trees are not exactly the same. The forest is only a word. Yes, it denotes a collectivity, but no collectivity has any consciousness of its own.
The society – have you come across society anywhere? Or do you hope some day to say, “Hi, society! How are you?” These words are just hollow, empty. They are only containers without any content in them. But man is so idiotic that he is more interested in containers than in the content.
I have heard that in a book shop a certain dictionary was not being sold at all. And the bookshop had kept the dictionary for ten years. They had purchased the wholesale rights to the dictionary, but not a single copy had they been able to sell in ten years, and they had been selling other books in thousands. The dictionary was really very significant, a milestone in the world of dictionaries; that’s why they had purchased the wholesale rights to it. But the book was not selling.
It just happened that the shopkeeper mentioned it to a painter who was looking for a book. The painter looked at the dictionary and he laughed. He said, “The whole problem is, its cover is wrong. Who bothers what is inside the dictionary? The cover is repulsive, that’s why you have not been able to sell it. I will make a cover for it. You change the cover.”
But the man said, “Just by changing the cover…? The dictionary will be the same.”
The painter said, “Don’t be worried – you just do what I am saying.” He made a new cover, beautiful, glossy, attractive…. Now, what has a dictionary to do with a nude woman? – but a nude woman was on the cover looking into the dictionary, the same dictionary. Again on that dictionary’s cover was the nude woman looking into the dictionary, the same dictionary. It was a beautiful cover.
But the owner was simply shocked – there was a queue! People were dying to purchase the dictionary. What he had not been able to do in ten years was done within a week. He had to order a reprint. He told the painter, “This is strange.”
The painter said, “It is not strange – it is just human.”
When you fall in love with a woman do you think of the content? When you fall in love with a man do you think of the content? Just the container…a little longer nose and you may fall in love. If the nose were a little shorter you might not have looked twice at the woman.
That’s the meaning of the word respect. You may not have thought about it; people don’t think about words. Respect means looking again: re-spect. When you see somebody and you feel like looking again at the person, that’s the meaning of the word respect. The person is so attractive, spectacular, that you would like to look again and again. But what you are looking at is the container, still.
I know of a professor…he was my colleague in the university, one of the most intelligent people I have ever met – but he was ugly. The content was just great, but the container…that too was just great! He was head of the department of psychology. Just because of him, students were not taking the subject of psychology.
He told me, “This is a strange university, where nobody seems to be interested in psychology. We have a full-fledged department, perhaps one of the best departments in the university. All the staff are very qualified people, but somehow students take psychology up to their BA, and after getting a BA nobody turns up for postgraduate study” – because the head of the department gives classes only for postgraduate students or research scholars.
I said to him, “It may shock you but you are the reason.”
He said, “Me? I have done no harm to anybody.”
I said, “You simply look into the mirror and don’t ask me. Your container is all wrong.”
And the postgraduate philosophy and psychology courses are mostly filled by girls, because psychology or philosophy are not going to be of much help in life. They may create trouble perhaps, but they are not going to help you. So, in India particularly, only girls turn to psychology because they are not interested in business, in service, in a career; they are interested, in India, in catching hold of a rich husband. And a postgraduate girl obviously has more chances of catching hold of a good-salaried husband.
In any other department there is much competition; in psychology and philosophy there is not much competition. Moreover, professors are very generous in passing people, giving them better marks, higher distinctions, more first classes, so that more people will become attracted. Those departments are dying all over the world.
There are hundreds of universities where no student takes postgraduate classes in philosophy for the simple reason that wherever you go, although you may have a first class MA in philosophy, that is not a qualification. In fact, it is a kind of disqualification – nobody is going to take you just because of that. It is enough proof that you are not going to be of any use; your degree shows you are useless. Philosophy has no market value.
When I went to study philosophy in the university, my family were absolutely against it, unanimously. Everybody was bothering me continuously: “Don’t go in for philosophy. You know perfectly well,” they told me, “in our town there are postgraduates in philosophy who have been unemployed for years. Nobody takes any interest in them. The moment they hear you are a postgraduate in philosophy, they say, ‘You are not of any use in the world.’“
But I told them, “Don’t be worried, I am not interested at all in your world. And I will be the last person to ask anybody to employ me. I am going to create my own world.”
My father said, “You are simply crazy. How are you going to create your own world?”
I said, “You will see. I am not going to use your world. I will create my own world.”
Reluctantly, sadly, they sent me to the university. You will be surprised – even my professors, becoming acquainted with me, told me, “An intelligent student like you should be in the department of politics, economics. What the hell are you doing in the department of philosophy?
“This is only for girls, and they are not interested in philosophy at all. But we go on passing them because without them the department will be closed and we will be unemployed. So whether they are interested in philosophy or not, whether they do their work or not, we go on passing them. They need certificates, and their certificates are not for the marketplace, they are for marriage – that is a totally different thing. But what are you doing here?”
Even the professors were worried about me. After my graduation they all suggested, “You move.”
I said, “You don’t understand – it is my subject. You people don’t belong to this subject. You have somehow wrongly entered philosophy. Perhaps you could not get entry into any other department; that’s why you entered to study philosophy. And once you studied philosophy there was no other profession left for you except to be a professor of philosophy; that was the only profession left. But you don’t belong to philosophy at all; otherwise you should be happy that I am joining it. It is my world.
I was also a student of that professor who was really ugly; later on I became his colleague. When I told him, “You just look at your face in the mirror,” he said, “But, then, why have you joined our department?”
I said, “Because I am not interested in containers – my interest is in content. I don’t care in what kind of boxes you are presented; I just look inside. My interest is in your inside. Whether your nose is flat, your eyes are crooked – I have no interest in what kind of case you have been imprisoned. I am interested in you.” But this is a human weakness: just to see the cover of a book, the advertisement of a certain thing, and be impressed by things which have nothing to do with the reality, things not concerned with reality.
If you want to sell a car, you have to advertise the car with a beautiful woman standing just by the side of the bonnet, looking at the car, enchanted. She is enchanted by the car, you become enchanted by her. Strange game! And then you purchase the car – as if that woman is going to come as part and parcel of the car. Later on you understand and feel silly, but then it is too late. That woman has nothing to do with the car.
In fact, such kinds of advertisements will show people of the future, what kind of people have existed on the earth before. After two thousand years people will think, “It seems it was just a madhouse! These advertisements show something about the people who were advertising, who were looking at the advertisements; these advertisements must have worked.” They are working.
You purchase a thing not because you need it but because it is advertised so much, hammered so much in your mind, from all sides. Wherever you go the billboards are there; in the movie it is there: Coca-Cola, Coca-Cola, Coca-Cola…wherever you go. It is difficult to get rid of Coca-Cola – and then naturally you decide it is better to taste it, because if the whole world is talking about Coca-Cola there must be something in it.
The question you have asked is your question – you are not interested in truth. But you don’t have the courage even to say that. Why be afraid? If you are not interested, it is perfectly okay. Then the truth is not interested in you either. The truth is not going to follow you, it is not going to nag you, “Be interested in me! Why are you not interested in me?” It is not your wife.
Asking what truth is would have been enough. If you had stopped there…. The same question was asked by Pontius Pilate – his last question to Jesus Christ. He had asked many other things and Jesus had answered them. His last question was, “What is truth?” – and this is the only question that Jesus did not answer.
Now, Jesus not answering the question can have many interpretations. Perhaps he knew nothing about truth. Perhaps he knew, but he also knew that the questioner was not going to understand it; it was futile, because the questioner was asking from a space which was absolutely wrong. Pontius Pilate was the governor-general; he was going to decide the fate of this young outrageous person who was just a hobo, a nobody. Perhaps he was the first hippie in the world.
To ask about truth you have to be in a certain space.
You cannot be in power and ask the person who is standing before you as a criminal, whose life is in your hands – you are going to decide whether he is going to be crucified tomorrow or not. This is not the way to ask such a vital, ultimately meaningful question. You have to come down. You have to sit as a disciple by the side of the man you want to question about truth. Only a disciple has the qualification to ask such a question. Perhaps Jesus did not answer because there was no disciple; there was a governor-general.
Or, it is possible Jesus wanted to answer but language was a barrier. Truth cannot be expressed through language; the moment you put it into words something goes wrong.
It is just as when you take a completely straight staff and put it in the water halfway: you will be surprised that the straight staff is no longer straight. Where it meets the water – half of it is out, half is in the water – something has gone wrong, it is no longer straight. It has taken an angle, it is crooked. You take the staff back out of the water…and it is a miracle! – it is again absolutely straight. Nothing happens to the staff in water, but the nature of water and the nature of air cause them to function differently. The straight line becomes no longer the same; it is under different laws.
The same happens to truth the moment it enters the world of language.
Language is all human creation:
Truth is not.
We are a creation of truth.
Language is our creation; hence it cannot express our origin, it is superficial.
Language is just a toy in our hands.
I was talking to a great scholar, Doctor Hiralal Jain; he was a world-famous scholar on Jainism, and a man of words. He knows seven languages and was so efficient in every one that it was difficult to decide which was his mother tongue. His whole life he had devoted to words, their roots…. Words have traveled for thousands of years in so many lands, in so many climates; they have changed with every move of the society. It is really a very, very interesting inquiry – how words have come to be what they are, from where they have come.
We were traveling in the train, in the same compartment. We knew each other – he was an old man but he belonged to the same city where I was brought up. We were neighbors, his whole family lived next door to my family. He used to come once in a while when I was a child, only in the summer vacations, because he was engaged all over the world in different universities. But finally I also became a professor in the same university where he had become head of the department of the Sanskrit, Pali, and Prakrit languages. These three languages are the ancientmost in the East, and he was perhaps the best scholar of all the three.
So traveling in the train…we were both going to the same conference. I said, “You have wasted your whole life with words. You have never bothered about meanings.”
He said, “Meanings? But words have meanings!”
I said, “Words don’t have any meaning.” I said to him, “For example I can say, ‘What is this whole hullabaloo?’ Now what does this word hullaballoo mean? I can change it. I can say, ‘What is all this Honolulu?’ If you are a little bit intelligent you will understand that it is the same – Honolulu or hullabaloo. Words mean what we want them to mean, they don’t have any intrinsic meaning.
Meaning is something different, totally different – and truth is pure meaning, pure content without any container. The moment you put a container around it you are doing something….
It is as if you see a bird on the wing in the sky. It is so beautiful – the flight, the freedom, the space, the sunrays, and the joy of the bird on the wing…life throbbing, pulsating. You can catch the bird, you can put it into a golden cage – do you think it is the same bird?, the same bird that was on the wing when the sun was rising, the same bird fluttering in the strong wind in the vast sky with no barriers? Yes, your cage is beautiful, golden; but the bird has no longer the same freedom, it has no longer the same beauty, it has no longer the same truth. You have killed everything.
In a very superficial way it is the same bird because the body is the same, but what about the soul? What about the innermost core of the bird? Can it be the same in the cage and in the open sky on the wing? This is a little bit delicate, but not beyond intelligence: it is no longer the same bird.
The same happens to truth.
The moment you put it into language, the whole freedom, the whole beauty, the whole authenticity is gone.
Truth said is truth dead.
You are asking what is truth.
I can show you the way so that you can see what is the truth.
You cannot see through my eyes; you cannot get a glimpse of it through my words.
If you are really interested in knowing, then I can show you the path which leads to truth.
I have been calling that path meditation.
You be silent – because truth is your innermost property, your own treasure: not the kingdom of God somewhere else in the heavens, but the kingdom of God within you just now, throbbing, pulsating – your heartbeat.
It is here, but you are not here.
You have to be brought back home. You have gone too far away from yourself. Perhaps you have got lost and you don’t know how to come back home. Perhaps you are standing in front of your home, but you cannot remember that this is your home.
I have heard about a drunkard who comes to his home in the middle of the night, but he is so drunk, it is a miracle that he reaches his house. Not really a miracle, just an old habit of the body: the poor body, simply like a robot, mechanically brings him home. But he cannot recognize that this is his home.
A woman opens the door; she is his mother. He falls at the feet of the old woman and says, “Help me, – my old mother must be waiting for me. Where is my house? Just lead me.”
The mother tries to tell him, “I am your mother. This is your house.”
He says, “Don’t be ridiculous. My old mother waits for me without eating, and half the night is gone. It happens every day, and every day somebody or other helps me and leads me to my home. You be kind enough…just think of my old mother and help to show me where my house is. I cannot figure it out.”
At that very moment another drunkard, a friend, comes staggering along, and he says, “Don’t be deceived by anybody. I am here, your friend; I will take you to your home. Just hold my hand, hold it tight, and I will take you to your home.”
The mother says, “Don’t go with that idiot! He is drunk just like you, and wherever he takes you, it is not going to be your home. This is your home. The farther he takes you, the farther away you will be from your mother and your home.”
All your so-called religious leaders have been taking you away from yourself, toward God.
God is the longest distance from you.
If you want a definition of God, that will do: The longest distance from you, the absolute distance from you.
And all the religions are taking you toward God. They are really taking you away from yourself. Their whole conditioning is to help you forget yourself. They teach you to remember God, they don’t teach you to remember yourself.
They poison people who teach that sort of thing. They poisoned Socrates because he was teaching: Know thyself. They wanted him to say: Know the way to God, the way to heaven. It was heretical in their eyes to say to people, know thyself. Know God, know anything else, but not thyself.
Now, what crime was Socrates committing? If he was saying to people, “Know thyself,” why did the religious people of his days become so angry? There is a reason: he was cutting their very roots by telling them, “Be yourself, know yourself; then there is no need of any religion, no need of any pope, no need of any priest, no need of any mediator between you and God.”
Mediators are needed because God is so far away.
You cannot see, you cannot conceive…. Somebody else is needed who is capable of seeing God – a prophet, a messiah. He will become your mediator; it is enough for you to know him. Not even that, it is enough for you to believe in him, and to believe that he knows God; you just blindly follow him.
And remember, all following is blind.
There is no other kind.
I cannot show you anything other than yourself because that is the truth:
You are the truth.
And you are asking why people are not interested in it? They are not interested in it because they have been conditioned. For centuries they have been continuously conditioned: You are just a sinner, you are born in sin. This life is a punishment. You are not of any value, of any worth. There is nothing to be searched for within you, you have to look outward. You have to approach some god, some truth, which is far away, a long, long journey.”
And the problem is that truth is just within you.
Truth needs no journey.
It needs only a remembrance.
People are not interested in truth because they have been taught not to be interested in themselves.
All the religions are telling you: be unselfish, be interested in others, serve others, love your enemy – even love your neighbor, which is certainly more difficult. But nobody says, “Love yourself.”
“Love God” – I don’t know how you are going to love God. You don’t know what God looks like. You don’t know from where to approach Him, which side is His face. The Indian god has three faces; from all the three sides you can approach him. The Hindu god has thousands of hands; you can hold any. But where are you going to meet these gods with thousands of hands, three heads…? Just all junk. Nobody knows….
A small child was making a drawing. His father asked him, “What are you doing, so absorbed?”
He said, “I am drawing a picture of God.”
The father said, “A picture of God? But nobody has seen Him, nobody knows how He looks. How can you make a picture of God?”
The child said, “Just wait. Let me finish the picture and everybody will know how He looks.” All these gods that you know in the temples, in the churches, are the drawings of children, nothing more.
You have been told to seek and search for something which always takes you away from yourself. That’s why people are not interested in truth – because truth is within you, it is you.
You have been programmed so criminally, such a deep harm has been done to you, that your priests, your prophets, your messiahs cannot be forgiven. They have spoiled millions of people’s lives; just for the sheer joy of being a messiah or a prophet, they have crushed you all.
I am teaching you to be selfish.
Let me repeat it, because the word selfishness has been condemned so much that there is every possibility you will misunderstand me. But the word is really beautiful.
To be selfish simply means to be yourself.
I say to you: don’t consider anybody else in the world, just consider yourself; and in that very consideration you will have considered the whole world. In being selfish you will find all the altruism that you have been seeking and seeking and not finding, because the whole thing was upside down.
You are told to love your neighbor – but you have never loved yourself. And a person who has not loved himself, how can he love the neighbor? From where can he get love? First you have to have it. You are loving the neighbor – you who knows nothing of love because you have never loved yourself. The neighbor is loving you – he has never loved himself. Such insanity is happening in the world: people who know nothing of love are loving each other.
It is like beggars begging from each other, each thinking the other is the emperor. Both are thinking in the same way: the other is the emperor. Both are beggars. Sooner or later the reality manifests itself; then there is misery, suffering. Then you think you have been cheated, this beggar has been trying to prove himself an emperor. Now this is absolutely absurd – it is you who were thinking him an emperor. And the same is the situation from the other side: the other person thinks you have been cheating him, pretending to be an emperor and you are just a beggar.
When both beggars find that they are beggars, what else can they do other than be angry, enraged, violent to each other, hating each other as deeply as possible? And the love…? It was nothing; they don’t know what love is.
To know anything, you have to begin with yourself.
Once it happened…I was sitting by the side of a river, and just a few feet away another man was sitting. A small boat in a strong wind turned over, and the man who was in the boat cried loudly, “Save me!” – he was drowning. The man who was sitting just a few feet away from me was closer to the man, so he jumped in to save him…and then both started crying, “Save me!”
I said, “This is something!” I had to jump in. It was difficult to save two people – because they both were trying to drown me! – but it was not a long distance from the shore; somehow I carried them both. And I told the man who had jumped in to help, “If you don’t know swimming you should not be so compassionate.”
He said, “But I forgot. Seeing the man drowning I completely forgot that I don’t know swimming. I realized only when I had jumped into the water, what I had done. But it was too late.”
And I said, “I had to think twice before I jumped, because to save two drowning men is very difficult” – they both try to be on top of you, they are so much afraid of drowning. “It was just fortunate that the bank was not far away, so even underwater….” I remained underwater while carrying them to the bank. “Otherwise you would have killed me! You were two, and I was alone.” I knew swimming but that was of no help because these two persons, both strong, were holding onto my neck as tight as possible.
But during the whole of your life this is happening. You go on forgetting that you don’t know what love is. You have never loved yourself, you have never respected yourself, you have never considered yourself.
I teach you to be selfish. Learn swimming first; then perhaps you can save somebody. There is no need to go in search of somebody to save.
That’s what the Christian missionary does – he is in search of people to save. They even approach us here – where everybody is saved! They try to convince sannyasins – and our sannyasins enjoy it tremendously. It is really hilarious: trying to save somebody who is saved! On dry land, in a desert, in Oregon, trying to save somebody…!
Do you think in this dry creek…even if you try to kill yourself by drowning, it is impossible.
Our sannyasins say to them, “We are saved” – but they don’t listen, they go on saying that, “Christ is the savior.” But this is strange. If a man is not sick why should he enter your hospital, or drink your medicine? Isn’t anybody allowed to be just healthy?
No! According to these religions everybody is born sick, and from your very birth they are trying to save you. And they have created this world where nobody knows what love is, nobody knows what respect is, nobody knows what truth is; nobody knows anything which can make life bliss. Yes, everybody knows how to create troubles for himself and for others. Everybody is so skilled in creating misery – and the whole cause is that you have been told to be unselfish. You have been told to sacrifice yourself for some idiotic ideal.
I want you just to be simply selfish.
And you will be surprised that if you are selfish you discover so many treasures within yourself that soon you start sharing them – because finding a treasure is a lesser joy than sharing it.
And the treasures that are within you don’t follow the ordinary economics and its laws. They are just the very opposite, diametrically opposite to the ordinary economic structure.
In the ordinary economics if you give something, you will have less. If you go on giving, soon you will be a beggar. In the ordinary economic world you have to snatch as much from everybody as possible then you have more and more and more. The treasures I am talking about to you, follow a different law: if you cling to them they shrink, if you cling too much you can even kill them. If you want to destroy them, then close all the windows and doors, become a grave so nothing can escape outside you – but you will be a dead man, with all your treasures also dead with you; your truth, your freedom, your love, your joy. Everything will be dead with you – securely dead, well-insured.
But if you want to grow your treasures, share them, share to all and sundry – don’t bother whether this is a friend or a foe. When you are sharing, the question is of sharing, it is not with whom. Whomever it may concern, you simply give. Don’t be concerned about the address, you simply go on sending love letters. Somebody will receive them somewhere. And the more you go on sharing, the more goes on entering you from unknown sources. A man is just like a well….
It happens in hot countries – in India, in many places – that there are only two wells in the village: one that belongs to the richest man, in his compound, and the other for everybody, the people. Certainly the well of the rich man is deeper, bigger; the people’s well is as poor as the people are. In summer the people’s well will dry out, but they cannot be allowed to use the rich man’s well because – this is ordinary economics – if they go on taking the water from his well, his well will dry out too.
It happened in one village, the rich man was so afraid of his well going dry, that not only did he disallow anybody from the town to take water, he disallowed his own family. He simply closed the well, locked it.
His servants brought water from many miles away, from a river. It seemed sane because for three years there had been no rain and there was a danger that his well might dry out; even the river was becoming thinner and thinner every day. So he was saving his well for the last moment when there would be no water anywhere available; at least he would have water in the last moments of the summer.
The river dried out, and he had to open his well. It was full of water, but the water was not drinkable anymore, it had become poisoned.
A well remains drinkable if you go on taking water from it. The more water is taken out, the more water from the hidden sources all around the earth goes on coming into the well; fresh water goes on coming into it. Because the well was closed there was no need for the fresh water to come in, there was no way. So all the sources closed, and the water died; it became poisonous.
The same happens to the person who is afraid of sharing himself. He cannot save his treasures – this is not the way to save them, this is the way to destroy them.
So when I say be selfish, I am really trying to help you to become as unselfish as possible; that’s the only way.
Be selfish.
Find out your truth, your love, your compassion – all that you have brought into the world with your birth.
And start giving it to those who need, to those who do not need; to those whom you love, to those whom you don’t love. You should not make any distinctions; only then can you expand. When there are no distinctions, no categories, you start expanding.
And that expansion is the truth;
That expanding consciousness is the truth.
And it is right this very moment within you, you have not to go anywhere else.
But at least let the question be yours so that I can help you to find the answer which will be yours.
My answer is of no help:
My answer will be only words to you.
You can make holy scriptures of those words, you can worship those words. That’s what humanity has been doing for thousands of years. It is time to stop this garbage.
I want you to find your answer, but that is possible only when you start with your question.
So ask, “What is truth?” and don’t be so insulting to truth that you ask, “Whatsoever it is, why are people not interested in it?” Don’t shift it to somebody else’s shoulders. Say sincerely, “Why am I not interested in it?”
This is not a Sunday sermon. I am not a speaker, a lecturer, an orator. I don’t know anything about oratory. I am simply talking to you, man to man, human being to human being. It has to be immediate, direct.
I am not somebody sent by God.
I am just born among you, just like you.
If there is any difference, this is the difference: I began with my own questions. And that’s almost half the journey finished. The first half is the most difficult, the second half is not so difficult.
Accept your ignorance.
In that very acceptance you have taken a wise step; perhaps you have had the first glimpse of wisdom.
Recognize that “I am not interested in truth.” In that very recognition there will be a shocking realization; perhaps a door that was closed may open in that shock.
But remember, it is your quest:
It has to be your question.
And I do not want to give you any answer.
I can only show you the way to find your own answer. Truth liberates, but it has to be your own.
Otherwise, if it is somebody else’s, truth binds. Jesus Christ’s truth, Mohammed’s truth, Buddha’s truth, have all become prisons. I don’t want my truth to become a prison for anybody.
I want my truth to be an inspiration.
I want my truth to trigger something in you which is yours.
My truth simply gives you an assurance that a human being, just like you, can attain to truth.
That will give you immense respect toward yourself. You will not feel unworthy sinners, that somebody has to come to save you – some Christ, some Buddha has to come, and then you will be saved. You don’t have to wait for anybody to save you. You are born saved, just a little insight…. If my presence can do that, then my work is finished.
I don’t want to become a prison around you.
I want to become a freedom around you, an open sky around you, not a golden cage – so that you can open your wings and feel the joy of flying higher and higher toward the stars.

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