Kabir the Mystic Poet

TO WHOM SHALL I GO TO LEARN ABOUT MY BELOVED?

“To whom shall I go to learn about my Beloved?’ Kabir says: Where should I go to learn about my Beloved? Where is my Beloved? Where is his abode? and who can show it to me?
KABIR SAYS: “AS YOU NEVER MAY FIND THE FOREST
IF YOU IGNORE THE TREE,
SO HE MAY NEVER BE FOUND IN ABSTRACTIONS.”

A tremendously significant sutra, of very great value — like a criterion. Listen: I come across people who say, “We love humanity” — and they have not loved a single human being. Humanity is an abstraction. How can you love humanity — just tell me? Where will you find humanity/ How will you hug humanity? How will you kiss humanity/ No, these are tricks of the mind. Wherever you come across anyone, you will always come across a human being.

Humanity is nowhere; there are only human beings and human beings. Humanity is an abstraction, an idea; it just exists in the minds of philosophers — nowhere else. But a very tricky idea: you can avoid human beings in the name of humanity — you can even kill human beings in the name of humanity. You can say, “I am serving humanity, and you are coming in the way, so I will destroy you.” That’s what Adolf Hitler says, that’s what Joseph Stalin says, that’s what Chairman Mao says, that’s what all the politicians of the world say: “We love humanity. To save humanity, we will have to kill human beings.” these are very tricky ideas.

KABIR SAYS: “AS YOU NEVER MAY FIND THE FOREST
IF YOU IGNORE THE TREE…

The forest exists not — `forest’ is just a word. That which exists is the tree. Trees and trees and trees — they exist; and if you start looking for the forest and ignoring the trees, you will never find the forest. Maybe that’s why so many people look for God and never find him — they look for an abstraction. God is like the forest: you will find a tree, a rock, a man, a woman, a dog, a snake, a star — these things you will find; you will not find God anywhere. God is the name of the totality. He exists in these particulars; he has nowhere any other existence. He exists in the snake as the snake, and he exists in the tree as the tree, and he exists in the rock as the rock, and he exists in the man as the man. Kabir is indicating something of great importance. People ask; Where is God? Standing in the forest, they are asking, “Where is the forest?” If you say, “You are surrounded by forest,” they will say, “This is an oak tree, this is a pine tree — but where is the forest? I know there are trees, this is a pine tree — but where is the forest? I know there are trees, but where is the forest? I want to know the forest.” But this man will go mad and he will never come across the forest. Denying the tree, there is no forest. The forest exists in the oak, in the pine, in the cedar. The forest manifests into a thousand and one forms. The forest in itself cannot be found — that is just an abstraction, a universal.

Find the particular and forget the universal. That is the difference between real religion and false religion. False religion is dedicated to abstractions, real religion is dedicated to particulars. Love the man, love the woman, love the child, love the animal, love the tree, love the stars…. Don’t ask for God, and you will find God. Loving a woman, loving an animal, loving a tree, by and by you will become aware that the tree is not just a tree. The tree far transcends the tree itself; it is transcendental. Loving a woman, you will know that she is not just the body, not just the mind; something FAR transcendental is hidden behind. The woman becomes a window — a window into God. Your own child becomes a window unto God. Love the particular, the concrete, the real, and you can see what mischief people have done in the name of abstractions. Christians fighting against Mohammedans, Mohammedans fighting against Hindus, and asked, “For what?” — they say, “God.” The Mohammedan god is an abstraction, the Christian god is an abstraction, the Hindu god is an abstraction. Only godliness exists. And you kill the Hindu, and you kill the Mohammedan, and you kill the Christian: you kill real gods in the name of false ideas; you kill real persons in the name of theories.

Kabir says: This is no way — so I am not going to ask anybody, “Where is my Beloved?” I am going to love, and find my Beloved in loving. I am not going to ask, “Where is God? What is God?” and the definition of it. No, I am going to start loving — and through love the definition is going to come into me. The comprehension will come through love — not through ideation, not through thinking. This is the way of the heart — to start loving. And the way of the mind is to go on thinking.
AVADHU BEGAM DES HAMARA
And Kabir says: By loving, I have come to a point where no misery exists.
O SADHU: MY LAND IS A SORROWLESS LAND.

Love knows no sorrow. If you still know sorrow, you don’t know love. Love knows no sorrow, no sadness. How can love know sorrow? It is impossible — because love is a transcendence if life and death, both. It is going beyond life and death, both. It is the pause between two notes. It is higher than life, it is higher than death… how can there be sorrow? And it is a pause, silence… how can there be sorrow?

O SADHU: MY LAND IS A SORROWLESS LAND.
I CRY ALOUD TO ALL, TO THE KING AND THE BEGGAR,
THE EMPEROR AND THE FAKIR —
WHOSOEVER SEEKS FOR SHELTER IN THE HIGHEST,
LET ALL COME AND SETTLE IN MY LAND…
And Kabir says: Come to the land of love. Don’t go on fighting about doctrines, dogmas. Don’t go on hair-splitting — don’t waste time. I have arrived — and I declare to all and sundry, to kings and to beggars, and to emperors and to fakirs, “Come to my land!”
AVADHU BEGAM DES HAMARA… and I have arrived in a country where there is no sorrow. Why are you wasting your time in abstractions and theories and philosophisations? Come! — LET ALL COME AND SETTLE IN MY LAND…
LET THE WEARY COME AND LAY HIS BURDENS HERE…
Only love can become the rest, only love is the shelter. You can find anything, except love, but you will only be finding new tensions and nothing else; and new burdens — and those burdens are heavy. Jesus says: Come to me all those who are heavily burdened. My burden is light. Come to me, rest in me.
… LET ALL COME AND SETTLE IN MY LAND:
LET THE WEARY COME AND LAY HIS BURDENS HERE…

Only in love, burdens disappear. Because what in fact is the basic burden? The basic burden is that of the ego: I am — that is the basic burden. All other burdens are accumulated on this center. This is the very hub — I am; then you accumulate many burdens. The center has to be destroyed. Love makes you a nobody, love takes you off your ground, love destroys your ego utterly. It annihilates, it kills you completely, and it gives you a new life — a life without any ego: a humble life, a simple life, a life which God can live through. You become a hollow bamboo… and his music starts flowing through you. You don’t hinder, because you are not there to hinder him. If you are, you are the hindrance.

People come to me and they ask: How can I go beyond sorrow? I tell them: You cannot go beyond sorrow. There IS a transcendence, but YOU cannot go; you will have to drop before it. Yes, there is a state of sorrowlessness, but you cannot enter into it; you will have to drop out of it. Something within you will enter, but not you. Something within you will go into that land of no sorrow, but not you: you are the sorrow. Have you not watched it? — the greater your ego, the greater sorrow it creates. It hurts — it is like a wound. The lesser the ego, the less it hurts — the wound is healed. When there is no ego, it hurts not at all. Even if somebody insults you it does not hurt, because you are not — how can he insult you? The insult hits you only when the wound exists — you are defeated because you wanted to be victorious. If the ego is not, what is the difference between victory and defeat? What is the difference between success and failure? All distinctions are created by the ego. Wherever ego feels fulfilled, it is success, victory. When ego feels unfulfilled, it is failure, defeat. All defeats and victories are because of the ego. When there is no ego, you simply live without victory, without failure. You simply live without success, without failure. You simply live… and that simple life is the religious life. That’s what Kabir mans by what he calls SADHU. SADHU means the simple, SADHU means the noncomplex, SADHU means the humble. That’s what I call “sannyasin.”

SO LIVE HERE, MY BROTHER,

THAT YOU MAY CROSS WITH EASE TO THAT OTHER SHORE.

“So live here, my brother, that you may cross with ease to that other shore.” You can live in two ways: you can live in such a way that you become burdened so much with this shore that the journey becomes impossible to go to the other. Live lightly… so when the day comes to go to the other shore, you can simply jump on your feet and start moving…Live here in such a way that the here does not become too important for you — don’t become obsessed. It is good to live in a house, but when the time comes to leave the house one should be able to go without looking back. Be with people — but if your wife dies, one should be able to say goodbye… silently, lovingly, with no complaint, with no grudge. Live in such a way that you don’t become entangled too much.

SO LIVE HERE, MY BROTHER,

THAT YOU MAY CROSS WITH EASE TO THAT OTHER SHORE.

And that other shore is not very far away, the other shore surrounds you everywhere. If you start living rightly… and what do I mean by “rightly”? Those four steps: be herenow, learn to transform your poisons into honey, share your positivity, and be nothing. That’s what I mean by “living rightly.” If you live rightly, in twenty-four hours’ time you will cross many times to this shore from that, from that to this, from this to that — many times God will penetrate you, radiate you. Many times you will be suddenly on the other shore. Walking on the street… and suddenly he is there. The sun is falling on you, the sunrays falling behind the trees… and suddenly the other shore is there. It is not somewhere far away near other galaxies; it is always here. It is a quality of your awareness, it is a quality of your understanding, it is a quality of your meditation. If you are unburdened here, unobsessed with the worldly things….Live in the world but don’t allow the world to live in you. And then you will be alone even in the crowd… and even in the crowd you will see the other shore. The other shore becomes so close that you can cross the barrier any moment you want. It is so easy, like breathing — but the art has to be learnt. It is a question of art, skill. Be skillful. Love, but don’t allow your love to become lust. Love, but don’t allow your love to become attachment. Love, but don’t allow your love to become a dependence, a slavery. And then… then love tremendously. Then there is no fear. And loving, you will be able to cross to the other shore without any difficulty.

Use money, but don’t become money-minded. I’m not saying escape from money, and I’m not saying escape from your wife and children and desert them and go to the Himalayan caves — I am not teaching any sort of foolishness to you. And neither is Kabir in favor of that.

Kabir is tremendously life-affirmative, he’s absolutely for life. In fact, anybody who knows God will be for life, because this life is of God. If you escape from life you are escaping from God himself — from the very opportunity where he was available. Don’t escape anywhere. Rather than putting effort into escaping, put more effort into becoming aware. That will be the REAL escape:

without escaping anywhere, you will create a cave in your heart… and you will start living there. And the other shore is always by the corner. Any moment you want, you can move… and you can have as many drinks out of God in the day as you like. Looking at a flower, you can drink him… and the other shore opens. It is a vision — it is not a material thing. Looking at a roseflower, silently, lovingly, without any verbalization inside — total silence… and the silence becomes luminous, and the silence becomes a song, and a vision arises. The flower disappears, you disappear… and God is there. In the disappearance of the subject and the object, the gap arises. Between the two notes, the pause… and suddenly you are on the other shore…

IT IS A LAND WITHOUT EARTH OR SKY,

WITHOUT MOON OR STARS;

FOR ONLY THE RADIANCE OF TRUTH

SHINES IN the Kingdom of God.

“Only the radiance of truth…” Only truth IS on the other shore — neither the seeker nor the sought, neither the observer nor the observed, neither matter nor consciousness — only truth, only the ultimate science. And you become one with it, you are not separate from it: you become part of that divine melody.

KABIR SAYS: “O BELOVED BROTHER:

NAUGHT IS ESSENTIAL SAVE TRUTH.”

Nothing else is essential. Search, seek, try to know what truth is — and truth is not in abstractions, and truth is not in scriptures, and truth is not to be found in the dialogues of the theologians.

Truth is herenow. Truth IS: you have to become available to it. Truth is in the opening of your heart — love will become the bridge between you and truth. Right now you are trying to live with the world, with the ego-bridge. Ego separates, love joins. Love is the only yoga — `yoga’ means union. Ego separates, makes you an island — aloof.

And look at the irony: first you cultivate the ego, and then you say, “I feel very lonely.” Ego makes you feel lonely, it makes you lonely. Ego makes you like a small island. Love… again you have become the continent.

Love is the bridge between you and that which is.

Kabir sings the song of love. And he says: through love you will attain to that pause between two notes… where divine melody continues… where God is playing on his veena. And that is very close by. Right now, this very moment, it is surrounding you. It is within your reach, almost within your grasp — just a little more understanding, a little more awareness. Live in awareness. Let these four steps become your whole religion, your whole Torah — all else is just commentary.

Be herenow… just this moment: you see the beauty of it? This very moment the benediction is here, God is here. When you are silent he speaks, when you are listening he sings. And learn to transform your poisons into honey, so all barriers are destroyed. Then third, start sharing: whatsoever you have, share it. Share your beauty, share your song, share your life. In sharing, you will be enriched. Don’t hoard. The moment you start hoarding you are going against God. The moment you start hoarding you are trying to depend on your own self; you have lost trust in life. Give it! As life has given it to you, give it — more will be coming. And fourth, be nothing. Nothing is the source of all, nothing is the source of infinity… nothing is God. Nothing means NIRVANA. Be nothing — and in being nothing, you will have attained to the whole. In being something, you will miss; in being nothing, you will arrive home.

These are the sutras of Kabir.

Kabir is one of the greatest mystics of the world. Meditate on Kabir — pay attention to him, to what he says. And he is a very simple man, not learned in any way — all that he says is out of his experience. He is not a scholar, he does not know anything about the Veda and the Koran and the Bible. All that he says is out of his own existential experience. He is not a theoretician or a philosopher; he is a poet. And not only a poet, he is a mystic poet — and the difference is that the poet sometimes has glimpses of God, and then he falls back again — rare moments of flight…then he is closed again, turned off; then he is an ordinary man. Only sometimes, like lightning, poetry comes to him. That is the difference between a poet and a mystic poet. A mystic poet has arrived. It is not a flight of his imagination, it is not just a vision — now it is his very life. He breathes in God, he lives in God, he lives like God, he IS god. So when he says something, it is not just accidental; when he says something, it is from his very core.

Kabir is a mystic poet. Listen to his melody, sing his song…

and if you have understood, then become a little more aware. And don’t look for the forest! There are only trees, there is no forest — `forest’ is just a collective noun, an abstraction. There is no God high in the heaven; there are gods and gods and gods — the tree god, the rock god, the river god, the man god, the woman god — there are gods and gods and gods… but there is no God. This whole existence is divine. Love the trees if you want to know anything about the forest. Love people if you want to know anything about God. Each particular manifestation can become a window, a door. Don’t be obsessed too much by words — the word `god’ is not God, the word `love’ is not love, and the word `fire’ of course is not fire. Drop words, and move more and more towards the existential.

Feel more, rather than thinking. Through feeling, your prayer will arise… and through feeling, you will be dissolved one day. And when you are dissolved, God is.

Source:

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

Discourse Series: The Divine Melody

Chapter #9

Chapter title: : The pause between two notes

9 January 1977 am in Buddha Hall

References:

Osho has spoken on Mystics like Sai Baba, Dadu, Farid, Gurdjieff, J. Krishnamurti, Kabir, Nanak, Patanjali, Rumi, Sahajo, Saraha, Socrates, Tilopa, Valmiki, Zarathustra and many more in His discourses. Some of these can be referred to in the following books/discourses:

  1. Sermons in Stones
  2. Come Come Yet Again Come
  3. The Hidden Splendor
  4. Beyond Enlightenment
  5. The New Dawn
  6. The Sword and The Lotus
  7. The Fish in the Sea is Not Thirsty
  8. Socrates Poisoned Again After 25 Centuries
  9. Yoga: The Alpha and the Omega, Vol 1
  10. The Path of Love
  11. The Book of Wisdom
  12. The Guest
  13. Ecstasy – The Forgotten Language

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