TALKS IN AMERICA

From Misery to Enlightenment 20

Twentieth Discourse from the series of 29 discourses - From Misery to Enlightenment by Osho.
You can listen, download or read all of these discourses on oshoworld.com.


Osho,
Were pagans religious?
The Christians have given such a condemnatory definition to the word pagan that it has become almost the meaning of the word. To be a pagan, according to the Christians, is to be irreligious. The reality is just the reverse.
Christianity is a pseudo-religion.
It is not even irreligious, because to me an irreligious person is at least authentic, but a pseudo-religious person is insincere, dishonest. He is a hypocrite. So first you have to drop the idea about pagans that Christianity has created.
Christianity is only two thousand years old; pagans have lived for millions of years. Before any religion was born, the so-called great religions – Hinduism, Mohammedanism, Buddhism, Christianity – before even their names were heard, the pagans were there all over the world.
The pagan is not irreligious.
He is not anti-religious, he is not pseudo-religious.
He is not religious either; but in all these four categories, he comes closest to the religious.
The pagan is of a previous state of religious consciousness.
Before a man can become religious he will have to go back, through the state of being a pagan. There is no other way.
What do I mean by saying that before becoming religious a man has to pass through the state of being a pagan? I mean that he has to become free from all pseudo-religions, pseudo-irreligions, all kinds of ideologies, knowledge which is borrowed. He has to become clean, just like Adam and Eve coming out of the garden of Eden.
Who were they – Jews? Christians? Hindus? Mohammedans? The only word that can be used for them is pagans. They were still like small children.
All children are pagans. You try your hardest to make them Christians and Jews and Hindus; and unfortunately you succeed because the child is so helpless and so dependent on you, you can force him to pretend to be anybody: Catholic, Protestant, Witnesses of Jehovah, any nonsense. You can force anything on the child, because the human child is the most helpless child in the whole animal kingdom.
The human child cannot survive without his parents, without somebody taking care, without somebody giving warmth and love. He needs everything that all other animal kids need – and over and above all he needs something more….
It has been scientifically found that you can give the child all his physical nourishment, but if you deprive him of his psychological nourishment, he is going to die within three months. If, for example, nobody cuddles him, nobody tries to hold him close to their body and in the dark night he is left alone, no mother to give him warmth….
You can put electric blankets over him, but the warmth of a mother’s body is not just electricity, it is not just heat, it is something more: it is love, it is care. The child feels that he is protected, that he is needed, that he needs to survive because somebody loves him.
A child hidden in darkness behind the blankets without anybody holding him close to his or her heart starts feeling ignored, neglected, perhaps abandoned. Why should he go on living? For whom?
He is so helpless that you can exploit him. And this is the misery, that even parents have not been able to control the temptation to exploit the helpless, although the helpless is nobody but their own child. Perhaps they never think what they are doing.
The Christian parents think they are helping the child to become a Christian; otherwise he will be lost. They never pay a second thought to the question: They are Christians; have they arrived, or are they also not lost?
Just a simple question has to be put into every parent’s mind: Whatever you have done, whatever you have thought, whatever you have believed, has it helped you to reach to that space which you would like your child to reach? If you yourself are in a limbo, not knowing who you are, from where you have come, to where you are going, what all this is that you are doing….
If you don’t have any answer, please be compassionate to the child. It is your child; at least don’t let him live the life that you have lived. One thing is certain, that the way you have followed has led nowhere.
So at least make the child aware, “I have wasted my life, and I would not like you to waste your life in the same way. At least try some other way; even if you also waste your life, at least there will be a satisfaction that you tried something else. Perhaps everything fails, then there is no problem. But, go on your own way.”
That’s what I mean by leaving the child a pagan.
A pagan to me is one who has a clean slate of mind, who has no idea of God, not even a question about God, who is not worried about heaven and hell, who is not concerned whether Jesus is right or Moses is right or Mohammed is right. These are not his questions.
And remember one very fundamental thing:
When a question is not yours, no answer can be of any help.
It is like forcing somebody who is not thirsty to drink water. When the question is not there, pouring an answer into his head is as absurd as that. Somebody is not hungry and you are forcing him at the point of a sword, “You have to eat!” In almost all civilized societies that is the way, even about eating, food, clothing…You have to do this.”
I remember my own childhood…. In a Jaina family nothing can be eaten in the night; between sunrise and sunset you can eat, you can drink. Naturally the times are fixed and you cannot eat many times in such a small span. So in a Jaina family there is nothing like breakfast, because if you take a breakfast then there will be a difficulty; then lunch has to be a little late, nearabout one – as it is all over the world. But if lunch is at one, supper has to be at five, before sunset. Then there will be too small a gap. Then what about a coffee break? There is not even time for a water break.
So the only way is, drop breakfast, take your lunch at eleven, your supper at five. There must be at least a six-hour gap between two big meals. This is very unscientific, because then after five till the next morning at eleven – such a big gap.
One becomes accustomed, one has to become accustomed – there is no other way – because in a very orthodox Jaina family, after supper everything that is left over is given to the beggars. So there is nothing left in the kitchen that you can find in the night when everybody is asleep. Everything has to be finished because there is no point in keeping it; tomorrow it will be stale. And up to eleven you have to wait.
In my childhood, tea was still not very acceptable. It was introduced by Westerners into India. It came after moving around the world. From China it was introduced into the West – Marco Polo carried bags of tea – and from Europe it came to India. In fact in China the first name in the history of tea is an Indian name, Bodhidharma; he was the first tea grower. It really took a round trip.
And because it came through the Britishers…. In India, among the masses there was an antagonism about everything that was coming through the Britishers; naturally, they were the enemies. And they were distributing tea and coffee free, even with raffle tickets in the packets. If you happened to get a packet with a ticket, you also won a lottery.
The Indian masses were even more reluctant: why so much interest in spreading tea and coffee, investing so much money and so many people in free distribution? I have seen it with my own eyes, in my own town. All the tea companies would come and distribute with big lotteries. But slowly slowly, because of those lotteries, people started opening their packets – and a few rebellious souls started to drink tea and coffee also.
It does not taste good in the beginning; tea and coffee – they don’t taste good. You have to learn the taste; but people who tried, found that it gives a certain alertness. Indians were using smoking tobacco for the same purpose. In fact tobacco and tea both contain a similar ingredient which makes you feel a little more alive, less sleepy, more awake.
So slowly…but it took years, and particularly in the orthodox houses. I must have been nearabout twenty when I first saw tea entering my house, because my grandmother was absolutely against all this nonsense.
“What can be there in just dry leaves? Drink milk drink lassi” – which is made of curd – “which is nourishment. What is this nonsense? What nourishment can there be? And these people,” she used to say, “are befooling you so that you become weak. They want a weak country because slaves should not be strong.”
She was an old woman but she had some strong ideas. In a way she was right; she was saying that you should not become weaker, otherwise you will never be free. And rationally, Indians have been drinking milk and eating sweets made of milk or curd with a certain idea that the body needs strength, the mind needs strength. “Now, tea and coffee cannot give it to you, and these people are spreading these things just to divert your mind.”
And they succeeded in diverting it. People forgot all about milk and lassi and things that were really nourishing, and they became addicted to tea and coffee. So in my childhood even tea and coffee in the morning were not available. The breakfast was really lunch.
If you think of the word breakfast – and it was really a breakfast, because from five o’clock the day before till eleven o’clock…. Your breakfast is not much of a breakfast, because you go to bed eating, munching – if nothing else, then at least chewing gum, so that you can go on chewing even in your sleep. And you get up with tea in bed. First tea, then anything else.
In India it was inconceivable. First you have to take a bath, you have to clean your mouth, you have to do your worship. And then too you have to wait until eleven.
Now, even children…when I was a child it was difficult for me, and I think it must be difficult for all children to remain hungry so long. Fortunately I lived with my maternal grandmother who was a very softhearted woman, and she could understand. She said, “I know how much I have suffered in my childhood, so you don’t be worried. And if it is sin I am responsible for it because I am giving it to you.”
And she would bring sweets and everything and keep them by my bed, even in the night. She spoiled me for my whole life. If even in the night, at two o’clock, I might start feeling hungry, I would just have to find the table, and I would find everything on it that she had kept there.
It became such a habit that when I moved to the university all the students were puzzled, “What kind of habits do you have? Every day you bring sweets and keep them by the side of your bed, and in the middle of the night…. Can’t you eat before?”
I said, “That does not make any difference. In the middle of the night, when I wake up at two o’clock – I have been doing that for so many years that at two o’clock my stomach simply gives the alarm. Then if I don’t eat I cannot sleep. So it is better to eat and then go to sleep.”
But my other brothers and sisters were all learning starvation. I told my father, “It is your religion; if you have chosen not to eat in the night, that is your business. But these children have no idea of any contract with you. You have never even given them a choice that ‘if you are a child born to me then you will have to stay hungry so many hours every day.’ Now, don’t impose these things on them. Leave them alone. Then according to their nature, if they feel hungry they will eat.”
And this was a strange situation. For example, whenever I came to my father’s house, which was not far away from my maternal grandmother’s house, if it was a meal time they would try to force me to eat. And I was always full because in the night, before going to sleep I was eating. In the middle of the night I slept, in the morning I was eating, so I was always full; I was not interested in their lunch.
And they would force me, they would say, “Eat, otherwise how will you survive?”
I would say, “Don’t be worried. I am surviving – can’t you see I am surviving? You can weigh me against any of your children.” And I was heavier than any of their children: my father’s, my uncle’s, my other uncle’s. And I said, “That’s enough proof; you can weigh us any moment. You are starving those poor guys.” But religion imposes itself from generation to generation.
All children are born pagan.
One basic thing to be noted: you were born pagan.
A pagan means just a tabula rasa – nothing was written on you, no scripture, no discipline, no doctrine, no cult, no creed.
You were simply a human being, and then people started cutting: this side is longer, this side is smaller…stretching you and trying to make something out of you. They were not interested in you. Nobody is interested in you at all; everybody is interested in his own idea, and he wants to impose that idea on you. He thinks and believes that he is imposing it because he loves you.
To me, if this is love, then what is hate? Love must mean only one thing, freedom – and this crippling is not giving you freedom. Who are they to decide what kind of morality, what kind of character, what kind of ideology is right for you? But they decide everything.
In this whole world, everything is decided by others for others. This is a very strange place.
I am reminded of a small story. It happened in the court of Emperor Akbar – he was the great Mogul emperor of India. He and his wise men were standing in the court discussing something. He had nine wise people chosen from all over India; about every kind of specialization he had the top man in his court. They were called his nine jewels.
One of them was a man called Birbal. He was a man with a tremendous sense of humor, that’s why he had been chosen. He was found to be the best man who had the profoundest sense of humor.
Just as they were talking, Akbar, for no reason, out of the blue, slapped Birbal who was standing by his side. Birbal never waited a single moment; he slapped the man who was standing by his other side. That was the quality of that man, he was really an intelligent man. The other man could not understand what was going on. The emperor slapped him, why should he slap me?
He got stuck, and he asked Birbal, “What do you mean by that?”
Birbal said, “Don’t waste time: you hit somebody else!”
He said, “What in the world is going on?”
Birbal said, “You cannot hit the source back. You just go ahead and hit somebody else and let it pass; otherwise you will be stuck. And the world is round….”
You will be surprised that Galileo discovered only three hundred years ago that the world is round. But in India, the very word geography is bhoogol. For thousands of years, the very word for geography was bhoogol; bhoogol means “the earth is round.”
Galileo’s discovery is not much, or Copernicus,’ or Columbus’: all these people had no idea that there is a country where the word geography simply means “the world is round.”
So Birbal said, “The world is round, don’t be worried; sooner or later the hit will come back to the emperor!” And as it happened it came back that very night.
It must have gone round many people; and everybody was dumbstruck, and each said, “What is the point of it? – I have not done anything.”
The other said, “Nor have I done anything, but this is how it has started from the palace. And they say simply pass it on, don’t keep it, you are not concerned at all. It came to you, you passed it on; then you are finished with it. You are almost as clean as if nobody had slapped you. You cannot go back to the source.”
It is Birbal’s statement, “You cannot go back to the source, you just go on ahead. If the world is round, it will come to him.” And it came to the emperor by his most beloved wife, because her lover – she had a lover, and that lover hit her.
She said, “What do you mean by that?”
He said, “I don’t mean anything, this is just going on all around the capital. Everybody is being hit, and they say it has started from the emperor himself. And Birbal says, ‘Don’t be worried, the world is round; it will reach sooner or later to the emperor.’ “
But she was the person to hit the emperor; who else could have hit him? She hit him really hard! He said, “What do you mean by that? What are you doing? Who told you…? Has Birbal been here?”
She said, “No, nobody has been here but the hit has reached me. It has been going round the capital, how can I be out of it? It came to me with the message that you have started it and until it reaches back to you there is no way of ending it. So it is finished.”
The next day, immediately, the first thing the emperor did was to ask Birbal, “You are simply something! I was thinking that although the world is round, and what you are saying sounds sensible…. But that just in twenty-four hours it would reach me – that I never thought!”
Birbal said, “It is not a question of thinking, reality is such. I have watched this happen continuously. I don’t know why I am a Hindu, my father simply passed it on to me. His father must have passed it to him. Now I have to pass it to my children, otherwise I am stuck with the load.
“Pass on, so you remain free. Everybody is passing things. And you cannot go to the source. Now, where am I going to find my father? He is dead. And even if I could find him, he would say ‘Son, what can I do? My father has been dead for years, I cannot find him. It is better you give it to some young person who can carry it, and in his own time he will pass it on. Don’t be worried – this is how it has been happening for centuries.’ “
Every question goes on passing all its distortions, confusions, problems, anxieties, to the new generation. And the new generation invents a few of its own, so it goes on becoming accumulative. It is just like a river. New rivulets go on meeting it, and the river goes on becoming bigger, and bigger, and bigger.
That’s where it has reached now. For millions of years people have been pouring all their miseries and problems into their children. Now it has come to a point where the burden is too much. It can kill the whole of humanity.
Your question is significant. Why can’t you see the problems of life as clearly as I can see them? Let us move slowly. First, I can see clearly because I don’t have any life-problems. It works both ways. If you are clear, if you can see, your life-problems dissolve. Let me remind you about using the word dissolve. I am not saying you find the answers, solutions to your problems, no. And I am only talking about life-problems; that’s what you have asked about.
This is the most important thing about life-problems to understand: they are created by your unclarity of vision. So it is not that first you see them clearly, then you find the solution, and then you try to apply the solution. No, the process is not that long; the process is very simple and short.
The moment you can see your life-problem clearly, it dissolves. It is not that you have now found an answer that you will apply, and someday you will succeed in destroying the problem. The problem existed in your unclarity of vision. You were its creator.
Remember again, I am talking about life-problems. I am not saying that if your car is broken down you just sit silently and see clearly what the problem is: the problem is clear, now do something. It is not a question that you simply sit under a tree and meditate and just once in a while open your eyes and see whether the problem is solved or not.
This is not a life-problem, it is a mechanical problem. If your tire is punctured you will have to change the wheel. Sitting won’t do; you just get up and change the wheel. It has nothing to do with your mind and your clarity, it has something to do with the county road.
What can your clarity do with the county road? Otherwise, three thousand meditators here cannot mend one county road? Just meditation would have been enough – and in the morning you would find an asphalt road.
But the question is only about life-problems. For example, you are feeling jealous, angry, you are feeling a kind of meaninglessness. You are dragging yourself somehow. You don’t feel that life is juicy anymore. These are life-problems and they arise out of your unclarity of mind.
Because unclarity is the source of their arising, clarity becomes their dissolution. If you are clear, if you can see clearly, the problem will disappear.
You have not to do anything other than that. Just seeing, just watching its whole process: how the problem arises, how it takes possession of you, how you become completely clouded by it, blinded by it; and how you start acting madly, for which you repent later on, about which you realize later on that it was sheer insanity, that “I did it in spite of myself. I never wanted to do it, still I did it. And even when I was doing it I knew that I didn’t want to do it.” But it was as if you were possessed….
This very idea of being possessed by ghosts and spirits is nothing but a very ancient symbolical way of saying what I am saying to you. A man possessed by a ghost has nothing to do with any ghost; it is his own unconscious, his own jealousy, his own anger, hatred, his own unconscious mind. And his conscious mind is so small that the unconscious takes it over.
It appears almost as if somebody from outside has taken possession of you, because you are identified with your conscious mind – a small island – and an ocean from all around splashes on you, covers you with its foam. Naturally you think, Something from the outside has taken possession of me, and I am doing things which I don’t want to do.
Almost ninety-five percent of murderers have confessed in all the courts of the world…. No judge believes them because no judge is yet a psychoanalyst. This is such a mad world – that a murderer is being judged by a man who has studied law. Now what has law to do with murder? Is there any connection between law and murder? Do you think by learning law you become a murderer, or by learning law you become able to understand how murder happens, why a man kills somebody?
Law has nothing to do with it. That’s why I say this is a very mad world. A psychoanalyst should be judging because he can understand why a man murders. And when the man says, “I was not in my senses when I did it. I feel sorry for it, I cannot believe even now that I have done it. I have done it, but I cannot believe how it became possible….
But no judge is going to understand him. No judge has the capability of understanding. He would have done the same himself – knowing all the laws makes no difference. In fact legal people commit more illegal acts in the world than anybody else because they know exactly how to bypass laws, how to find out loopholes. And no law is perfect, there are loopholes. You need a little intelligence to find the loophole, and then you can do the thing without being caught.
I loved, in my high school days, one of my Mohammedan teachers, Maulana Rahimuddin. He was a scholar and certainly a man you could call wise. He used to be the superintendent of all the examinations. He was the oldest, seniormost teacher in the school. At every examination he would come into the examination hall and the first thing he would say was – and he was a very loving old man – “My boys, I have to inform you of a few things.
“One thing: copying from anybody is not a crime, it is not a sin – but getting caught is. If you have brought notes with you, hiding in your clothes, or if you have got books hidden in your pants and in your coats, I have no objection. Just be careful, because I am here to do my duty; I will try my best to catch you. You do your best not to be caught.
“But if you feel afraid, I give you two minutes: I will sit with closed eyes in my chair, you just bring your notes and your copies and your books and put them on the table. Two minutes to decide…. Either you surrender them and forget about them – when you go home you can take them with you – or, if you decide to keep them, then be careful. With all my blessings do it, but don’t be caught, because if you are caught then I can’t help.”
He made the students so afraid when he was sitting there with closed eyes, that students would bring their notes, and their copies, and they would all pile up there.
I never used to bring anything, I used to take from his table. Students were bringing things, and I was standing near his table sorting out things which would be useful. And the whole hall was aghast at what I was doing, that I was now…. They knew me – “He is incurable.” And while I was doing this, I would say
“Maulana, don’t open your eyes, because I can see that you are trying to peep.” And he had to keep his eyes closed completely.
I used to sit just in front, where the examiner’s chair was, just in front of him, because that was the most useful place. He never expected that there, just in front of him, somebody would be doing something.
He would go around the whole hall and he would not bother me at all because I looked so innocent sitting just in front of him. Who was going to do any copying from any book or…? Nothing would be possible in front of him. The thieves’ seats were all in the back rows, hiding in the corners, and those were the places where he would go and look.
When I passed my matriculation, one day I met him on the road, and I said, “Maulana, I have to say one thing.”
He said, “What?”
I said, “You should start looking at the first bench in front of you. That’s where you have been…”
He said, “What do you mean? Because there you have been sitting?”
I said, “Yes, I have been sitting there, and I have been choosing notes from others because I don’t bother making notes and all that; others do it for me. They put them on your table, and while you are keeping your eyes closed I take out whatsoever I need.
“And as you know, being caught is the crime. I am just giving you a tip: in future never leave the first row, the front line, unchecked because that is where those who know how to do a certain thing will be sitting. You go on looking for idiots in the corners. Will a man of intelligence hide in a corner?”
He said, “You really cheated me! That’s why you used to say, ‘Maulana, keep your eyes closed tight.’ I thought you must be very virtuous. And I even followed you and kept my eyes closed tightly!”
I said, “Of course. I had to keep your eyes closed tightly because I had to sort out…they were others’ notes, and two minutes is such a small time.”
He said, “In my whole life nobody has been able to deceive me. How did you manage?”
I said, “It was so clear, because I could see. The first day I did not do anything; I simply watched, and I saw. It was so clear that you were looking at places where people would be hiding if they wanted to do something. And you were leaving one place absolutely out of your vision and that was right in front of you. That day I decided that this was going to be my seat in every examination.”
He said, “But how did you manage to always have that seat? – because certainly I have been seeing you every year in the same seat.”
I said, “That too is very easy. One just should not be caught.”
He said, “How did you do that?”
I said, “Just before the examination day I go in the hall and just change my examination number to that desk; whatever it is, I change it to that desk. And the examination number for that desk I move to the other desk. The next day I am sitting there, and my examination number is there. Nobody can object, there is no problem. And that was the only determining thing. It was so simple!”
If you see a thing clearly then either it disappears or, if it does not disappear, that means it is not created by you. It is created by somebody else; you are just being stupid in carrying it. It is not your problem, it is somebody else’s problem.
Remember it: only your problems will dissolve before your clarity.
But if you are carrying other people’s problems then it is very difficult, because those problems have nothing to do with your vision, your clarity. So those problems which don’t disappear give you a clear indication that you have borrowed them.
And you are continuously borrowing other people’s problems.
Letters come to me saying, “Somebody passed by me and I had a gut feeling that he was angry with me.” Somebody passed by you, and you have a gut feeling that he was angry about you…. At least you could have asked the person, “Are you angry with me? – because I am having a gut feeling….” You owe him this much courtesy at least before you determine that he is angry with you.
He may not be at all interested in you, he may be angry about something else. You may give him a good laugh. But it is possible – he may be angry with something else, somebody else, with himself, and you may get a gut feeling of anger. His anger can touch your feelings. It may not be addressed to you because the emotions are not linear. They don’t move from A to B, they move in circles, concentric circles.
Just as when you drop a stone in the lake, concentric circles arise and they go on spreading all around, when somebody is angry there are concentric circles around him of anger. Anybody passing by him, if he is sensitive, can get the feeling that he is angry. And naturally you decode this feeling as if he is angry with you.
It is better, then and there, to hold the man and ask, “What is the matter? because I am feeling a gut disturbance. I feel waves of anger arising around you. I don’t know for whom, for what, but at least be clear: if they are addressed to me tell me, so I can do something about them. If they are not addressed to me thank you. You go on your way, I go on my way.”
But this is not what people do. That’s why I say you are not straightforward, you are not authentic. Now you are just carrying an idea, and with this idea, whenever you pass that man you may start projecting that he is looking with anger, or he is moving with anger. These may be just projections now because you have got a certain idea that he was angry, so he must be angry.
Now whatever he is doing you will try to convince yourself that it is a proof of that. Now you can go on piling up and making a big story out of nothing. And now, later on, even if you tell him, he may not be able to remember what you are talking about. It is better to be very immediate.
Don’t start borrowing problems from people. And everybody is doing it – most of your problems are somebody else’s problems. The other may have even solved them, or dissolved them, and you are still carrying them.
Try to keep your life as clean and unburdened as possible.
Clarity is not something that needs any special talent. It is not something like the talent to be a painter, a poet, a musician. Everybody cannot be a musician, it is clear. There is no need either, because there is enough noise already. There is no need that everybody should be a painter, because almost every wall, every bathroom, every place where somebody can practice his art is full.
You will find proof of the insanity of man everywhere. In a railway station you go into the bathroom and you look around: graffiti has become an art form. These are great artists who are doing all this nonsense. What kind of people are these who come into the bathroom to paint and write things – and ugly things. But these must be in their minds, they must be carrying them everywhere.
You are passing by the side of people who are throwing all kinds of garbage. They are not throwing at you, they are just so full they have to throw it; otherwise they will die. They are simply unburdening themselves.
Of course if they start throwing rubbish and things like that on the road, they will be caught by the municipality or the police and they will be presented in court, charged with making the whole road dirty. But these things that they are throwing are invisible, no court can do anything. No policeman has yet been given an instrument to catch hold of these people’s graffiti that they are throwing all around.
If they throw it in the bathroom it is impossible that they are not throwing it in the office, because for the mind it makes no difference. In the bathroom they find it easier because the door is locked and they are alone. But they have come prepared. From where come these colors and pencils? – they have come perfectly ready, with all the instruments. They are throwing their graffiti everywhere, and you may be catching it.
Mind is a very sensitive phenomenon.
You can experiment with it and you will be surprised. You can sit in one room and let somebody who is very intimate with you, close to your heart, sit in the other room. You tell the person, “You sit silently for five minutes, then start putting on paper whatsoever comes to your mind: a word, an animal, the face of a man, or anything…a flower, whatever, a triangle, whatsoever.
“You are not to bring it, you have to allow it to come. You simply wait with the pencil in your hand on the paper; five minutes wait in silence and then wait for whatsoever comes. If a triangle comes, let the triangle be made there; if the face of a horse comes, let it be there.” Tell the person, “Make ten things, and after ten things open the door and come to my room” – or you go out to her room.
You are also to make, after five minutes, a first figure, then a second figure, then a third figure – ten figures. And you will be surprised that with a very sensitive person almost nine objects will be caught; the less sensitive, the less objects. But almost by anybody thirty-three percent, one third, are going to be caught.
If the person is a little prepared by hypnosis, then things will be very easy, then a hundred percent can be caught. You just have to tell the person to fall in deep sleep for five minutes, to, “close your eyes and relax, and whatever I say you simply accept.”
You just put out this idea after five minutes, when he is looking relaxed and his face is looking relaxed and you will be able to see that his face immediately loses its color. It is a different face. His eyes are different, his lips change their position. He is in a kind of deliberate sleep, but able to hear you.
You just tell him, “Tomorrow we are going to do an experiment at twelve o’clock. This is the experiment…. And in those ten minutes you will be extra receptive, so whatsoever I will be drawing on my paper in my room, you will immediately draw it on your paper in your room.”
These are simple experiments which can show how thought is continuously jumping from one person to another person. Walking behind a person on the road, just look exactly at the back of his neck, which is the most sensitive point – where the backbone, your spine, and your brain meet. It is a juncture.
Just stare at that point on the neck for a few seconds, then tell the person, “Look back,” and the person will immediately look back. Or tell the person, “Something is itching on your left leg.” He will scratch his left leg – and he will also look all around, a little surprised because something is not right.
There was nothing, no itching but the idea came that “there is itching.” He can feel physically that there is no itching, but the idea was so dear, and the instruction was so clear that before he could stop it, he was scratching.
Just small experiments…and you will be surprised to know that thoughts are things. They are continuously moving, and you are continuously receiving them. Other people’s problems jump upon you and sit on your head and eat your head – and you are trying to solve them. You are not even aware that they are not your problems: you are not supposed to solve them.
So clarity is simply a little alertness, a watchfulness, trying to watch what goes on inside you, outside you, with no judgment that this is good, this is bad. The moment you judge, you forget the simple process of being alert. A judge can never be alert; his judgment comes in the way.
So don’t judge. There is nothing good, there is nothing bad. As far as your effort to create a clear mind is concerned, all are objects of similar value, similar weight. You are just a watcher, with no attachment to this idea or that. Just learn a little detached alertness.
And this can be done at any time: working, not working, walking, sitting, eating, Lying down on your bed – anytime is meditation time.
And this is the meditation that I want you to do.
The only thing that I want you to do is to practice this simple way of becoming aware.
Your deepest problems will disappear. The superficial ones you will become aware are not yours. You can start giving them back to people.
It happened that from my house to the school there were three ways. Two were big roads but they were a little longer, and between the two there was a very small street. Only people who lived there went on that street, otherwise almost nobody; but because it was a shortcut to the school, that was my routine way.
On that street there was a small temple, and an old man lived there who was very much respected in the town. He continuously carried a flute with him, and he always played on it. I have heard many great flautists, and that man was not known at all, but his flute had a quality of his own. It was not professional, skillful, but there was immense love. And what he was singing was not sung for anybody else, just for his own joy.
He was a very simple old man. Nobody knew even his name, he was simply known as Bansiwale – the man with the flute. In daytime, in night time, whenever…and he had all the time in the world, he was just a simple old man living in, and taking care of, the temple. He would go out twice to beg, and that was all; then he was free to play his flute.
I used to sit in the temple with the old man. He never even asked me, “Why? – because nobody comes here.” Just the day he was dying he asked, because that day too only I was there. He told me, “I have thought many times to ask you – nobody comes here; I am a poor man, just a beggar – why do you come and sit here for hours listening to my flute? And I don’t know how to play it even, I never learned. I don’t have any master who has taught me the flute.
“I found it just in the street. Somebody must have forgotten it there, it fell or something. I inquired to whom it belongs. Nobody was ready to take it, so I said, okay, I will try. I started playing, and slowly slowly, I came to love the sounds.
“But why you? In your school you have a music class, a music teacher; you can learn everything there. I wanted to ask you but somehow I never was tempted that much. But today I am helpless. I am dying, and I don’t want to die with this question in my mind: Why, you used to come here?”
I said, “It is good you asked. I used to come here because I have been moving around the town more than anybody’s boy. I am less in the school and more in the town! I have been watching all kinds of people, sitting with all kinds of people. You are the only one with whom I feel a silence. You are not throwing anything at me – and that’s what I love.”
Everybody is throwing something or other, and whatsoever they are throwing gets caught in the head. It will take years to clean it. But you are not looking around; otherwise you would be very easily aware who the people are who are throwing garbage at you, who the people are who are not throwing anything at you, who the people are who simply throw a few flowers at you, a little song, just a loving breeze, and just pass by.
And there are people who are simply silent, not throwing anything at all at you. I call those people your friends who don’t throw things at you.
Only friends can sit in silence.
Only lovers can sit in silence.
But the so-called lovers and friends that you know are continuously nagging each other to say something: Why are you silent? And if you say something there is trouble. If you don’t say something there is trouble. Trouble is at any cost.
It seems there are no friends, no lovers, in the world. It is better then to go to the trees, sit by the side of the animals; at least they will not throw any garbage at you.
If you sit by the side of a buffalo, she is not going to tell you about the weather – even though she is British, it does not matter She is not going to tell you about the newspaper that you have also read – you won’t have to listen to the buffalo tell you again.
And if you sit silently, she is not going to nag you, “Man, what are you doing there? – ignoring me? Your own buffalo? And just the other day I saw that you were looking at that other buffalo so lovingly…. If it happens again I will break your neck!” No, she is not going to say anything. You can look at any buffalo, or not look at her.
Sit by the side of a tree. You will feel much more strengthened, nourished, clear, silent. Make friends with animals, birds, trees, rocks, because man is in a very third-rate condition. And this situation has arisen because we have not accepted the simple fact that each child is born a pagan. We have condemned that word.
A pagan is a pure soul, still unpolluted.
Become a pagan.
To me that is an absolute precondition for becoming religious.
I cannot say the pagan is religious, but I can say certainly that the pagan is the one who is closest to being religious. And anybody else – Christian, Hindu, Mohammedan, Jaina, Buddhist – who wants to become religious will have to pass through the process of being a pagan. That purification is absolutely necessary. That is a fire which will burn all that is rubbish in you.
I love and respect the word pagan, and I want it to be redeemed from the condemnation that Christians have poured on it. Yes, a pagan is a primitive, just as a child is.
A pagan is unknowledgeable, but to be unknowledgeable is not a sin.
A pagan is yet amoral.
He does not make much distinction between what is moral and what is immoral, for the simple reason that he is so simple. It needs a cunning mind to make the distinction between moral and immoral. He is very simple. If he likes something of yours, he can take it. He is not stealing it, he simply likes it.
One of my professors, Professor S.S. Roy, was very puzzled when one day I saw a book on his table, A New Model Of The Universe, by P.D. Ouspensky. I had been in search of that book. I had all the other books of Ouspensky, only that book was missing. So I took that book and told Professor Roy, “This book I am taking, and I will not be returning it because I need it more than you need it.”
He said, “This is some strange criterion. Now we have to decide it this way, who needs it more?”
I said, “In fact that should be the criterion whoever needs it more. I know perfectly well you have nothing to do with Ouspensky or Gurdjieff – or do you have something to do with these people?”
He said, “That’s true, I have nothing to do with these people.”
I said, “I have much to do with these people. This book is useless here. You may have paid for it but you paid for a useless book, and I am stealing something very useful to me. And still you think paying is right and stealing is wrong?”
He said, “I don’t want to argue with you, you simply take the book; that is an easier course. But what you are doing to me, don’t start doing with anybody else. This is absolutely amoral; you should at least offer the price of the book.”
I said, “No, because I am a poor student and you are a rich professor. To me…this book costs fifty-two rupees; that means for one month I have to go without eating food. Fifty-two rupees is the cost of my food. To you fifty-two means nothing, you earn two thousand rupees per month.
“Fifty-two is nothing for you, so you should see a rupee in my hand is much more valuable than in your hand. And I don’t bother about what the reserve bank says about it; you cannot deny the fact that fifty-two rupees means one month’s food for me. Can you say that this book means one month’s food for you?”
He said, “I cannot say anything. You simply take that book, but don’t do it to anybody else because nobody will understand it.”
I said, “That I know, but I am a pagan and I don’t believe in right and wrong on its face value.”
This story went around the whole university, that I was a pagan and I didn’t believe in any morality or immorality; I could do anything.
One of my professors, a very simple man, heard this – that I could do anything. He became very afraid because I used to go to his house. His was just on my way from the department to the hostel, his house was on the way. And he was alone, no family; he never got married. He was such a simple man, it was good he never got married. But I used to go in whenever I passed by there. I would enter into his kitchen – and he was a brahmin, and brahmins love food very much, so he used to make food with his own hands.
He was really a religious person, celibate, making his food with his own hands. I would eat anything, whatsoever I thought was delicious, and he would simply sit there. He would say, “You see I have been making it since the morning, and you finished it! And today I have heard it said that you don’t believe in morality, in immorality.”
I said, “You should have known before because I have been doing this to you for two years. Do you think this is immoral, not even asking you whether you have eaten or not? You have just prepared it and it is just cooling and I have finished it.”
He said, “I thought many times to raise the question that…but rather than getting involved in any argument with you, it is better to make the whole thing again; that is simpler, cheaper. But you did it with S.S. Roy and that is too much, because he is a family man. I am alone: if you eat something or you take some of my clothes, that’s not much of a problem. But he is a married man, and you took the book – and he had not even read it! He had just purchased it one day before, in front of me he bought it from the book store.”
I said, “That does not matter, he can purchase it again. But why did you get so afraid, hearing the story going around?”
He said, “I got afraid that you have been doing these things to me. I thought that you are just playing jokes or just being friendly – I never had thought that you are a pagan.”
I said, “But why is pagan such a fear-creating word?”
All the religions all over the world have created great fear about the pagan: A pagan is one who does not believe in any values. That’s not true. A pagan is one who is learning on his own what are values and what are not values.
A pagan is a seeker, a searcher, an innocent being with a question mark.
Yes, he has no answer yet, but he is not a hypocrite. He will not pretend somebody else’s answer is his own. He does not follow anybody, he will simply follow his own natural course.
He will fall many times, he will go astray many times, but each time he will be more mature. Each time he comes back to the path that leads to his natural growth, he will be more mature, more centered, and each time have less possibility of falling.
That’s how one grows. A pagan grows into a religious man finally. Then he has values, but they are not the values that are being told to you. He has his own sense of what is right, what is wrong. It may not coincide with your morality, because your morality is out of a confused mind. His morality is out of his clarity. Your morality is just like groping in the dark and somehow trying to find the way. His morality is from the sunlit peaks.
The pagan is the first step; and the enlightened man is the last step of the journey.
Without ever telling you, that’s what I have been doing all along: trying to make you all pagans – but without telling you, because people simply freak out with the word pagan. It is not something to be afraid of. It is something to be proud of
Be a pagan and then see. This whole world looks totally different.
Be a pagan and then live, and then life has a different taste.
Be a pagan and growth will happen automatically, naturally.
And insist that you will remain a pagan. That means you will remain unprejudiced, unbiased, open, vulnerable, ready to accept truth in whatever form it comes. But it has to come to you, it has to be your own. Only then is it of any worth; otherwise it is of no worth at all.

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