Light on the Path 08

Eighth Discourse from the series of 38 discourses - Light on the Path by Osho.
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In these times of uncertainty, the best – and the worst – seems to be coming out in those of us who are around you. Would you comment on this?
There are no “times of uncertainty” because time is always uncertain. It is the difficulty with the mind: mind wants certainty – and time is always uncertain.
So when just by coincidence mind finds a small space of certainty, it feels settled: a kind of illusory permanence surrounds it. It tends to forget the real nature of existence and life, it starts living in a kind of dream world; it starts mistaking appearance for reality. It feels good to the mind because mind is always afraid of change for the simple reason: who knows what change will bring – good or bad? One thing is certain, that change will unsettle your world of illusions, expectations, dreams.
Mind is just like a child playing on the seashore, making palaces in the sand. For a moment it seems that the palace is ready – but it is made of shifting sands. Any moment just a small breeze, and it will be shattered to pieces. But we start living in that dream palace. We start feeling that we have found something which is going to remain with us always.
But time continuously goes on disturbing the mind. It looks hard but it is really very compassionate of existence to always remain with you. It does not allow you to make realities out of appearances. It does not give you a chance to accept masks as your real face, your original face.
So whenever time strikes one of your cherished illusions, it feels that it brings out the worst and the best in peoples’ lives. It simply brings out what was hidden behind the false permanence, behind a dream that you had taken for granted to be real. It simply takes away your mask. It has nothing to do with good or bad, better or worse – it simply takes away your mask. It simply exposes you, it brings you to face yourself, so whatever you have been repressing starts surfacing. It can be the worst, it can be the best.
Time has nothing to do with these categories. It simply allows your repressed to surface, it brings you to yourself.
Most of the people are hiding the worst. It is very rare to find a person who is hiding the best – why should he hide the best? People are even pretending to show themselves in the best of colors – why should they hide the best? People simply hide the worst, thinking that it is ugly.
A change – and your mask slips. A change – and you are for a moment…suddenly you find yourself naked. You have lost your clothes and the whole reality becomes a mirror: from everywhere your nudity, your nakedness is reflected.
Yes, very rarely, very exceptionally it also happens that the best comes out. But the best comes out only in those people who don’t have a mask, who are already naked, and who have already accepted their nudity as beautiful and natural. So the change in time cannot destroy anything in them; on the contrary, it enhances. It brings to light something which they may have forgotten, others may have forgotten. We tend to take things for granted.
So, only in a few exceptional cases where a person has been living innocently, without any hypocrisy, where a person is living knowing perfectly that nothing is certain here, and nothing is permanent…. And to expect these things is to create grounds for your own frustrations in the future – it is sowing seeds of despair, of anguish, of anxiety.
If you accept that change is the nature of reality, and everything is going to change; if you know it moment to moment, that the next moment may bring something totally new and whatever is so real in this moment will disperse like a cloud – which was here a moment ago and now is no longer here…. If this awareness is there, then any change does not create difficulty, then every change is acceptable.
You do not resist it, you do not want it to be otherwise. Even if it takes you and your beautiful dreams, your cherished desires, your half-finished palaces, there is no frustration because it was accepted from the very beginning that this can happen at any moment. So there is no conflict, there is no frustration in reality. You are at ease.
Hence I say there are no times of difficulties, no times of uncertainties. Time is change, is always changing. It is just that we go on making permanent things. Against time, we are going to be defeated – and we are at fault. And when we are defeated, naturally we are angry, we are frustrated with existence itself. We lose our trust. It seems that everything is against us, and we start living in paranoia, in fear – a certain spiritual trembling enters into our being.
But this happens because we have been expecting something which is not part of reality. Existence has no obligation to fulfill our expectations. And then mostly the worst comes out, because that is what we had hidden behind a certain idea of permanency. We were living with the idea that this was going to last forever; now there is no need to change. And then suddenly the whole earth disappears from under our feet – and naturally the worst comes out in people.
The best is also possible, but it is possible only if you have been living in tune with life, existence, without asking any favors. And we are always asking favors. If we are not asking any favors then there is no frustration, no anger.
For example, many who have been with me have felt great frustration with life itself because they worked hard, they put their whole energy into creating a beautiful dream, and as they were almost getting it finished – just the finishing touches were to be done – suddenly the whole thing disappears. They will feel angry, disgusted, against the whole of existence – but it is simply our own doing.
I am not frustrated – I have not even looked back for a single moment. Those were beautiful years, we lived beautifully, and it is the nature of existence: things change. What can we do? So we are trying to make something else – that will also change. Nothing is permanent here. Except change, everything changes.
So I don’t have any complaint. I have not felt even for a single moment that something has gone wrong…because here everything has gone wrong, but to me nothing has gone wrong. It is just that we tried to make beautiful palaces out of playing cards. You were just finishing and a breeze comes in without knowing that you were making palaces out of playing cards, and those palaces are scattered all around.
Perhaps except for me everybody is frustrated. And they feel angry at me too because I am not frustrated, I am not with them. That makes them even more angry. If I was also angry, and I was also complaining, and I was also tremendously disturbed, they would have felt a consolation. But I am not.
We enjoyed whatever we were doing, and we will be enjoying whatever we will be doing – and things will go on changing always. If this remembrance is always there as a lighthouse, then it will never make you feel in such a state that a difficult time, an uncertain time has brought the worst. We had never planted the seeds for it in the first place.
That’s why I am amongst you, but still something of me remains a stranger, an outsider. For the simple reason that I look at things in a totally different way; to me it is all acceptable.
Now it is going to be difficult to make another dream come true because many of those who worked to make one dream come true will be in a state of defeatism. They are defeated. They will feel that reality or existence does not care about innocent people who were not doing any harm, who were simply trying to make something beautiful. Even with them existence goes on following the same rule – it makes no exceptions.
So many sannyasins will be in a state of defeatism, will find it very difficult to make another effort again. They will feel, “What is the point? We will put in our energy, our expectations, our hopes, and who knows? – tomorrow everything is destroyed just by any small thing.” They will feel it is better not to hope, it is better not to dream. It is better to get lost in ordinary life where people don’t dream, where people don’t hope, where people don’t create, where people go on living a day-to-day life.
In that life you don’t come across such frustrations. Such frustrations come only when you try to reach the moon. And when you have almost reached, suddenly the moon disappears and you are further away from it than you have ever been: further away than before you had started the journey.
I can see that it is painful, but we are responsible for the pain. It feels that life is not just, not fair, because it has taken a toy from our hands. One should not be in such a hurry to come to such great conclusions. Wait a little more. Perhaps it is always for the good – all the changes. You should just be patient enough. You should give life a little more rope.
And always remember, the joy is not in completing something; the joy is that you desired, that you desired it with your total intensity, that while you were making it you had forgotten everything, the whole world – that it was the only focus of your whole being. And there is your bliss and your reward – not in the completion, not in the permanence of anything.
In this changing flux of existence we have to find in each moment its own reward. Whatever we were doing, we did our best, we were not half-hearted; we were not keeping back something: we were putting our total being into the act. That’s where our bliss is.
Then what happens to those dreams…they are really dreams, and it is a great challenge to make dreams into realities. But you should never forget it is a dream after all. It is a joy to make it a reality, but don’t forget that it remains a dream – and sooner or later it disappears.
If this awareness is there, then after each change in your life you will find yourself becoming sharper, more intelligent, more mature; becoming more alert to the very delicate nuances of existence – and with tremendous acceptance of whatever happens.
My whole life I have seen many things disappearing. I have made more friends than perhaps anybody has ever made. But somebody is a friend today – tomorrow it is finished. He finds some path on a crossroad and separates. But I have always taken it for granted that we are only travelers – one never knows how long someone is going to be with you. While someone is with you, give as much love as you can, share as much as you can. Tomorrow perhaps you will have to say good-bye to the person.
My whole life I have been going from one place to another place because something has failed. But I have not failed. Thousands of dreams can fail – that does not make me a failure. On the contrary, each dream disappearing makes me more victorious because it does not disturb me, does not even touch me. Its disappearance is an advantage, is an opportunity to learn to be mature. Then the best will be coming out of you. And whatever happens will not make any difference – your best will go on growing to higher peaks.
But never try to succeed against time, against life, against existence. Always remain in a let-go. Then one is never defeated, is never in a state of failure. And there is nothing to hide because there is no clinging to anything to make it permanent – any relationship, any friendship, any activity, anything – there is no desire to cling to it as long as things happen which you enjoy. You open yourself, you allow the juice of those moments to fill your being, and when those moments are gone you are always grateful, never complaining.
If the disappearing dreams leave you in gratitude, then the best is going to grow in you. I have never looked back.
Just the other day at evening darshan time a few people were very happy and enthusiastic, and they said, “Osho, we have come from Jabalpur.” And the only thing that came to my mind was that my time there has been left so far away and so far back that not even a memory has remained. Yes, I lived a dream there also, and just as all dreams fail, it failed.
And I have been doing that my whole life – I’m still doing that. I will go on doing that until my last breath, undefeated. That undefeatedness I find to be one’s victory. In that undefeatedness – that every time you make something, time changes it, life starts flowing in a different direction, things start happening that you had not expected….
The unknown is continuously entering your known world and disturbing it. But it disturbs only because you don’t welcome it. If you can welcome the unknown, and you can leave the known…. It is always the known that is disturbed by time – it is not the unknown. The unknown cannot be disturbed by time or by anything.
If you are ready to welcome the unknown, you know the secret of remaining victorious in all the defeats and all the failures.
Those dreams do not matter. What matters is how you come out of those broken dreams, those great expectations that have disappeared into thin air, you can’t even find their footprints.
How do you come out of it? If you come out of it unscratched, then you have known a great secret, you have found a master key. Then nothing can defeat you, then nothing can disturb you, then nothing can make you angry and nothing can pull you back. You are always marching into the unknown for new challenges. And all these challenges will go on sharpening the best in you.

What is home?
There is no home, there are only houses.
We try to make homes out of houses, but in fact, home is projection – there is only a house – it feels cold. We need a home: we want something cozy, something that belongs to us, something to which we belong. Something which is an extension of our being, something which we can make part of us; something which is not just a place where you live, but which becomes alive with you. A house is a dead thing; a home is a living entity, but it is a projection.
So those who are searching for a home will find themselves frustrated again and again because they will find again and again that it turns out to be only a house. Home was their idea. It was their illusion, their hallucination. It was their poetry, their romance. They have been weaving and spinning something invisible around the house which nobody else can see – only they can see it. But it is just a mind game.
Man is born homeless, and man remains his whole life homeless. Yes, he will make many houses into homes and he will get frustrated. And man dies homeless.
To accept the truth brings a tremendous transformation. Then you don’t search for a home – because home is something there, far away, something other than you. And everybody is searching for a home. When you see its illusoriness, then, rather than searching for a home, you will start searching for the being that is born homeless, whose destiny is homeless.
There is no way to make a home. And this is a miracle: the moment that you realize that there is no way to make a home, then this whole existence is home. Then wherever you are, you are at home; because now there is no question of making a home – now there is no question of creating an illusion. You have accepted your homelessness, not with any unwillingness, any resistance, but joyously, because it is good that you are born without a home; otherwise that home will be an imprisonment.
Just think, if people were born with a home, they would be born imprisoned. To be homeless is to be free. It is freedom. It means there is no attachment, no obsession with anything outside; that you are not in need of getting some warmth from the outside, but that your warmth is within you. You have the source of warmth inside; you don’t need it. So wherever you are – without a home – you are strangely at home.
The people who are searching for a home are always getting into despair, and finally are going to feel, “We have been cheated, life has cheated us. Somehow it gave us the desire to find a home – and there is no home at all, it simply does not exist.”
We try in every possible way: one finds a husband, one finds a wife, one brings children into the world…. One tries to create a family – that is a psychological home. One makes, not a house, but tries to make it almost a living entity. He tries to make a house according to his dreams – that it is going to be a fulfillment of warmth, that in this coldness…. And it is vast, the coldness of existence. The whole universe is so cold, so indifferent, that you want to create a small shelter for yourself where you can feel that you are taken care of, that something protects you…that it is something that belongs to you – you are an owner, not a homeless wanderer.
But in reality this kind of idea is going to create misery for you because one day you will find that the husband you have lived with, the wife you have lived with – is a stranger. Even after living together for fifty years, the strangeness has not disappeared; on the contrary, it has deepened. You were less strangers on the first day you met.
As time has passed and you have been together, you have become more and more strangers to each other, because you have come to know each other more and more – and now you don’t understand at all who the other person is. The more you have known, the less you know. It seems that the more you have become acquainted with the person, the more you become aware that your ignorance about the other is absolute…there is no way to destroy it.
Your children – you have thought they were your children, and one day you find they are not your children. You have been just a passage they have come through. They have their own lives – they are absolutely strangers. They don’t belong to you. They will find their own ways and their own lives.
Who is with you? Nobody is with anybody. You are in a crowd always, but alone. Either alone or in the crowd makes no difference: either in a home or just a wanderer – it makes no difference

I have never had a home. When I left my father’s house for the last time, I told him, “I will not be coming back again, because this was only a commitment to my maternal grandmother. She had a promise from me that I would come back at least at the time of her death. So just to keep the promise, I have come. Now there is no longer any commitment.”
My father said, “You always say strange things – this is your home!”
I said, “That’s where we differ. Neither is it my home nor is it your home. But you continue to live in an illusion and one day you will understand that this is not home.” And I told him a famous Sufi story I have told many times.

The king heard one night the sound of footsteps, somebody walking on the roof of his palace. He could not believe it. The palace was so well guarded – how had somebody reached the top?
He shouted, “Who are you?”
And the man on the roof shouted, “You should ask it of yourself first: who are you?”
The king rushed out and called the guards to catch hold of the man, but he was not found. And the next day, again there was a stranger. But the king recognized the voice – it was the same man. And the strange behavior that he had shown the night before…to walk on the roof and then to talk in such a way, and to say to the king, “First you should ask, who are you? You don’t even know that and you are worried about me! You do your business – I’m doing mine.”
The man was fighting with the guard at the gate of the palace and saying, “I want to stay in this caravanserai for a few days.”
The guard was saying again and again, “You seem to be an absolute idiot; this is not a caravanserai! This is the palace of the king, his home!”
And the man said, “Then I would like to see the man who lives in such an illusion.”
The king was listening: he recognized the voice. He called the guard and said, “Bring that man in.” And he asked him, “Are you the same man who was on the roof?”
The man said, “Yes.”
“And what were you doing there?”
He said, “My camel was lost, so I was searching for it.”
He said, “You seem to be really mad! Your camel was lost on my roof? Has anybody ever heard of camels getting lost on the roofs of houses? And now you are fighting with my guard and calling my home a caravanserai! This is very disrespectful to me: I am the king, and this is my home, and you have to learn how to behave!”
And the man started laughing. He said, “Strange! You are telling me to learn how to behave, and you don’t know at all what behavior means! Because I came here once before, and I found another man in your place. He was also saying that this is his home. I had come before that too, and there was another man and he was also saying that this is his home. Now you are saying this is your home!”
The king said, “That man was my father, who has died. And the first time you came you met my grandfather.”
The stranger said, “That is what I wanted to make clear to you, that they called this their home, and then they had to leave it behind. They could not take it with them. It is a caravanserai. This is an understanding, that many people have been here who thought it was their home, and they are all gone. You will be gone when I come next time! When so many people stay here and come and go, this is a caravanserai!”
“And I also wanted to stay for a few days, so what is wrong? You will stay a few days, your father stayed a few days, his father stayed a few days, and this has been going on for centuries. But I am not illusioned: to me it is a caravanserai.”

I told my father, “One day you will also understand that this is not home, because in this world we are born and the day we are born, we start dying. You can call your homes your graves, but you cannot call them homes, because you are only dying in them, you are not living!”
And since then I have been in many houses which people thought were my homes, and I have been telling them that they were not, that there is no possibility.

It is good to understand that we are wanderers, gypsies – searching for something, certainly. But the search can either be for a home…that means some security, some warmth, some coziness, some love from the outside, from somebody else – and that is the wrong way. That is the way of the worldly man – and he always ends in misery.
A sannyasin basically recognizes the fact that the search is not for a home, the search is for: who is this being? – the being who is born homeless, and will remain always homeless.
Don’t search for the home, because there is none. Search for your self, because there is one! And finding that one, suddenly, miraculously, the whole existence becomes your home. And you don’t create it, you don’t project it, you don’t make it. Suddenly it is a revelation. You cannot believe how you have been missing it up to now. The home was always where you were.
The gypsies have a better name in the Indian language. The gypsies are basically from Rajputana in India. They got the name “gypsy” because they first went out of India to Egypt and from Egypt they entered Europe. It is Egypt that gave them the name “gypsy” – from Egypt. But they are really people from India, and in India their name is “khanabadosh.”
That name has tremendous beauty. It means a person whose home is on his shoulders; so wherever he goes, he is always at home. The word khanabadosh is tremendously significant: khana means “home”, badosh means “on your own shoulders”.
It is not visible, it is there, but it is revealed only to those who can find who this wanderer is, who this seeker is. Rather than going after the sought, search for the seeker. And finding the seeker, you suddenly find the whole existence is your home; wherever you are, you are at home, even in a hotel. Because every house is a hotel and every place is a caravanserai.
So it is a question of how you look at things.
When I was in India, I was at home; when I was in America, I was at home. When I am in Nepal, I am at home. And tomorrow I don’t know where life may take me, but wherever it takes me, I will be at home. That, nobody can take away from me for the simple reason that I am not making any projection which can taken away.
Just finding yourself, you find that the whole existence is your home.

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