Intelligence, not Intellect

Birthday of Swedish Chemist Alfred Nobel

Born on 21 October 1833, Alfred Bernhard Nobel was a Swedish chemist, inventor, entrepreneur, and engineer, most notably known for establishing one of the world’s most prestigious awards – the Nobel Prize. He bequeathed most of his fortune to this foundation to acknowledge those who “conferred the greatest benefit to humankind” in physics, chemistry, medicine, literature, or peace work.

Nobel himself was quite skilled – he was fluent in six languages, composed poetry and drama, and presented an active voice on social issues. He also invented ‘dynamite’ and the blasting cap, and held more than 350 patents in fields such as artificial silk and leather. He owned several business ventures and made a fortune but after he was condemned as a war profiteer, Nobel chose to use his wealth in a different manner of philanthropy and intelligence. The foundation today boasts over 943 individuals and 25 organizations as Nobel laureates, presenting commendable work in their respective fields. 

Osho Says……



There are many things to be understood. First,

the psychology that prevails all over the world is Western psychology. Eastern psychology has been completely forgotten. Even in Eastern universities, everything is from the West — borrowed, second-hand — particularly with psychology. But the East has devoted thousands of years to human consciousness and it has come to very basic realizations about human evolution. To ignore Eastern psychology is to ignore man’s future and his evolution because nature has completed its work. Nature cannot go beyond man; it has come to its ultimate production. Now, the whole burden of evolution is on human shoulders. But unfortunately, Western psychology is materialistic, which means it denies man a soul, a spirit, a being which is immortal beyond this framework of your body.

This happened because of a natural historical coincidence. All the sciences are about matter. Physics is about the most interior constituents of matter — so is chemistry, so is the whole panorama of human scientific endeavor. Psychology is in wrong company. All these sciences are studying objects. Psychology’s world is the subjectivity of man, not the objects around him. But because in these three hundred years sciences have been developing on a materialist basis… and they have been succeeding, the very word scientific has become prestigious. Just to say that something is “scientific” is enough to say that is right. Once you hear the word scientific, you have already agreed, there is no question of argument anymore. If science has established something, then there is no need to doubt it. The scientists themselves have doubted enough and have tried from every possible angle; if they have come to a conclusion, it must be so.

In the midst of scientific progress, psychology was born. Naturally, it chose to be part of scientific growth. Another thing has been happening for three hundred years: Christianity has been behaving with scientists and science in a very crude, primitive, superstitious, illogical, violent way. And because science went on succeeding in spite of the opposition of the religions, the religions lost their prestige, their credit, and science became the only rightful search for truth. In such an atmosphere, psychology was born. Everybody was trying to prove that whatever he was doing was scientific; unless it was scientific, it would not be accepted by humanity at large.

And you can see the dichotomy in the very name of psychology. Psychology means the science of the soul. But the scientific attitude is to deny the existence of the soul, because there is no possibility of catching hold of it. There is no possibility of dissecting it, no possibility of taking it into the lab and doing all kinds of experiments before they can say yes, there is something like the soul, which is immortal. Because it is invisible, all forces are invisible, all energies are invisible. Energies and forces are known not by themselves, because they are not visible. They are known by their effects, because the effects are visible.

Nobody knows what electricity is — not even Thomas Alva Edison, who discovered it. But everybody knows how to switch it on, how to switch it off. Electricity, as energy, is not visible. You are seeing the light but the light is not electricity, it is an effect of its presence. We infer that electricity must be there because the light is on.


there is enough evidence that the soul must be there in man because there are so many effects indicating towards it. Without a soul, man is a machine.

But have you ever heard of machines revolting? going through a communist revolution? — machines throwing away one government, creating another government? No, machines are not concerned. They are not even prejudiced. They will work perfectly under communism, they will work perfectly under capitalism… to them, there is no question because there is no consciousness. A machine cannot say: “I cannot do this because this is immoral, criminal.” If machines could do that, there would be no war — because no weapon will agree with your politicians.

If the atom bomb had been asked whether it wanted to destroy Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the bomb would have laughed: “Why should I destroy? They have done no harm to me. In fact, I don’t know those people; there is no reason at all for me to destroy them. And I refuse to be a slave in an act which is irrational.”

Machines don’t think, don’t have consciousness, don’t have a heart, don’t feel. It is certain that man is not a machine because he has qualities which machines don’t have. Those qualities are indicative of a certain mysterious phenomenon inside, at the very center of our being — a flame of light, a flame of awareness. But science will accept it only if your consciousness can be put into their test tubes, if they can play around with your consciousness. But this, by the very nature of consciousness, is impossible.

Psychology accepted a very stupid definition: that it is a science. If I am allowed to rename it — and I have the right because I have renamed more people than anybody has ever done in the whole of history! so renaming is something which I have been doing continuously for years — I would call it parapsychology. In the East, it has been parapsychology: psychology of the beyond. And

man has so much space beyond himself — the whole universe — that to give him a definition, to say that he is just matter, is to reduce him to the lowest denominator. Only his body is matter, the house in which he lives. He is not the body and he is not the mind: he is beyond both.

Western psychologists, thinkers and philosophers are very well acquainted with my thinking, but strangely enough, very few of them seem to have guts to stand against the vested interests. One of my sannyasins, a world-famous economist, received the Nobel prize three years ago and naturally, when he received the Nobel prize and the honor, the first idea in his mind was: “Will it ever be possible for these people to understand Osho and recognize him?”

He asked the president of the Nobel Prize Committee… and now that he is a Nobel prize winner he can propose anybody’s name — only a member of the Nobel committee can propose a name. So he asked the president: “You have also been reading Osho, why is everybody silent about this man? We should take the matter in hand. His books should be considered for a Nobel prize.”

The president of the committee said, “Say it in such a way that nobody else hears — at least, his name should not be heard by anybody. I love the man. I know you love the man, and I know a few more people love him; but it is almost impossible for the committee to decide to give him a Nobel prize because this committee consists of people who have already brought names given by their governments. Osho has no government. On the contrary, all the governments are against him; all the religions are against him. And these people here cannot gather enough courage to be against the religions and against the governments, to go against the rich people who are dominating. And to propose Osho’s name, but I would suggest you not get into trouble, because there will be international pressure not to give him the Nobel prize. I have received a few suggestions to give him the Nobel prize but I have received a hundred times more letters saying, `Be alert! This man should not get the award!’ And I don’t want to get involved in a worldwide controversy. The moment you offer this man’s name there will be a worldwide controversy about it. I am a non-controversial man.” All politicians are non-controversial. They cannot afford to be controversial. It needs a lion’s heart, and your politicians are simply rats.

There must also be some jealousy involved in it, because I am the only man, homeless, with the whole world against him…. They can manage to crucify me. And in fact, I belong to the category of people who have been crucified. I don’t belong to the Nobel prize winners. My prize can be only like the poison to Socrates, crucifixion to Jesus, death to Al-Hillaj Mansoor — those are my rewards. So they are unnecessarily jealous. Even if they decide to give me the Nobel prize, I refuse it beforehand — in advance. I don’t want to take any chances. I don’t have any respect for your rewards or your prizes. I was a student in the university, participating in an all-India debate — almost fifty universities were participating. Knowing that I cannot speak very loudly, that if there are ten thousand people, I cannot reach them, they played a trick: they removed the microphone. At least one thing became certain: I am not going to get the first prize. Because only the first two or three rows in front of me could hear me, and the judges were sitting behind — they would not be able to hear a single word. The mike was there. When I arrived it was being used — the president, the vice-chancellor of that university, were speaking. And then they started whispering to each other. I was sitting just behind them. I figured out that they are thinking to remove the mike so that at least I could not get the first prize. Anybody else could get it, that did not matter.

They had put my name first, so I said, “I am not interested in any prize, so include me out!” And I took the mike and I said, “I will use my time to talk to the students and to the staff. You need not be worried, just cancel my name on your list of people who are going to win the prize. I think now there is no problem for you if I use the mike.”

I used the mike. I reached every judge and every person and in the end I said: “This was a conspiracy, because I speak slowly. I am not a street orator. I would ask you — the ten thousand people: students, professors, invited guests — what do you want? Should I remain on the list or should I drop the idea of the prize?”

They all raised their hands saying, “You should remain on the list.” And the whole thing turned completely upside down because only I used the mike and nobody else used the mike, so the judges could not hear anybody.

One judge told me: “This has been so hilarious! What they wanted turned out just the opposite. We were very happy that you managed well. We wanted to hear you; we have come to hear you — not to hear all these childish debaters.”

The same is the situation with awards all over the world: childish people, for reasons of politics, are getting Nobel prizes. These people may be famous intellectually but they are not people of genius. They are not people who have love in their hearts, justice, fairness. There is jealousy, and it takes such stupid forms that you cannot believe it. One man has written a letter to the German parliament that I am a hidden Catholic and in fact, I am working to spread Christianity, Catholicism. Now even Christ must have laughed, although he is not a fellow who would even smile, but at this point he must have laughed. Because I am a hidden Catholic, I should not be allowed in Germany. This is the intelligentsia! But because I have been against our so-called intelligentsia too, the problem has become more complicated.

I am all for intelligence and not at all for intellect and I make a very clear-cut distinction between the two. Intellect is part of the mind — you can go on becoming bigger and bigger and more and more knowledgeable by accumulating information: you will be thought a great intellectual. These are the people who constitute our intelligentsia. All that they know is borrowed. Intelligence arises only when meditation has blossomed. It is the fragrance of your silence — the song of your silence. It is a totally different thing because its source is different. Intellect functions as part of the mind, intelligence functions when mind stops functioning.

Intelligent people around the world are with me and that’s what counts. I don’t care about the crowd. My only concern is about those few people who have intelligence enough to enter deeper into their being, because as they open up more and more inside they start changing on the outside. One day, suddenly there is an awakened being and all his actions are full of the light, of the beauty, of the truth of what he has attained within himself.

They are with me. They have been coming from all over the world. All the governments are preventing them, but whenever there is something valuable, something so valuable that all those powerful people look like pygmies in comparison, they are naturally afraid. They would not like me to exist. But now it is too late. If they do any harm to me they will destroy their own society, their own economic structure; they will destroy their own prestige, their own credibility. And they will not harm my cause, they will help it immensely.

I don’t want their Nobel prizes — just a small crucifixion will do. I would have preferred an electric chair but to carry an electric chair to the place does not suit me. And it is less dramatic too. A wooden cross is far more dramatic. They are full of jealousy on every point because none of them has been able to answer all my criticisms of the past and its history. They are irritated also because they cannot find any way to somehow put a stop to my increasing number of friends and increasing number of enemies. Both are mine; they both relate to me. Without me, both would be at a loss. Somebody would lose a friend, somebody would lose an enemy — the whole world would be at a loss. But my people are going to change the whole situation — not by any effort, but just by living the way I have been showing you. You are going to be my ultimate witnesses. Whether I was right or wrong will be decided by your actions, by your being.


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

Discourse Series: Sermons in Stones

Chapter #22

Chapter title: The greatest discovery there is

21 December 1986 pm in


Osho has spoken on scientists like Aristotle, Chamberlain, Copernicus, Darwin, Descartes, Eddington, Edison, Einstein, Euclid, Galileo, Leibnitz, Kepler, Newton, Ptolemy, Pythagoras, Ramanujan, Rutherford and many others in His discourses. Some of these can be referred to in the following books/discourses:

  1. What Is, Is, What Ain’t, Ain’t
  2. One Seed Makes the Whole Earth Green
  3. Sufis: People on the Path Vol.1-2
  4. The Sun Rises in the Evening
  5. The Empty Boat
  6. Dang Dang Doko Dang
  7. Beyond Psychology
  8. Zarathustra, the laughing prophet
  9. From Personality to Individuality
  10. From Ignorance to Innocence
  11. Beyond Enlightenment
  12. The Golden Future
  13. Philosophia Perennis, Vol 1, 2
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