To me, neither God is important nor heaven nor hell nor angels — all those are just hypothetical. To me, meditation is the very soul of religion. But it can be attained only if you move rightly. Just a single step in a wrong direction… And you are always moving on a razor’s edge! Begin with love of the body, which is your outermost part. Start loving your mind — and if you love your mind you will decorate it, just the way you decorate your body. You keep it clean; you keep it fresh; you don’t want your body to smell horrible to people, you want your body to be loved and respected by others. Your presence should not be simply tolerated but welcomed.
You have to decorate your mind with poetry, with music, with art, with great literature. Your trouble is, your mind is filled only with trivia. Such third-rate things go on through your mind that you cannot love it. You think of nothing which is great. Make it more in tune with the greatest poets; make it in tune with people like Fyodor Dostoevsky, Leo Tolstoy, Anton Chekhov, Turgenev, Rabindranath, Kahlil Gibran, Mikhail Naimy; make it filled with the greatest heights that mind has reached. Then you will not be unfriendly to the mind. Then you will rejoice in the mind; even if mind is there in your silence, it will have a poetry and a music of its own, and to transcend such a refined mind is very easy. It is a friendly step towards higher peaks: poetry turning into mysticism, great literature turning into great insights into existence, music turning into silence.
And as these things start turning into higher peaks, beyond mind, you will be discovering new worlds, new universes which we don’t even have a name for. We can say blissfulness, ecstasy, enlightenment, but no word really describes it. It is simply outside the power of language to reduce it into explanations, into theories, into philosophies. It is simply beyond… but mind rejoices in its transcendence.
That’s what my unique contribution is to you. With absolute humbleness I want to tell you that I am far ahead of even Gautam Buddha, for the simple reason that he is still fighting with the mind. I have loved my mind, and through love I have transcended it. It is a totally new beginning. Naturally I have to be condemned; my people will be condemned. Many will come to me but will not be able to walk along with me even for a few steps, because soon they will find that their prejudices are preventing them from going with me.
Their prejudices are ancient, and naturally — I can understand — they cannot think that anybody can go beyond Gautam Buddha, just as the contemporaries of Gautam Buddha could not believe that he has gone beyond the VEDAS and beyond the seers of the UPANISHADS, just as contemporaries of Lao Tzu and Chuang Tzu could not believe that they have gone far beyond Confucius.
And if just out of humbleness I don’t say the truth, I will be committing a crime against truth. I don’t care about such humbleness; I want exactly what is the case to be explained to you. My approach towards meditation is absolutely new, absolutely fresh, because it depends on love — not on fight, not on war. Mahavira I have left twenty-five centuries behind. His name was not Mahavira — Mahavira means `the great warrior’. His name was Vardhamana, but people changed his name because he was a great warrior. A warrior against whom? — against his body, against his mind. And I don’t think that anybody who is against his body and against his mind is capable of reaching the beyond. Only love is the path.
Sagarpriya, make your mind as beautiful as possible. Decorate it with flowers. I am really very sad when I see that people don’t know THE BOOK OF MIRDAD, that they have never looked into the absurd stories of Chuang Tzu, that they have never bothered to understand the absolutely irrational stories of Zen. I cannot conceive of how you can live beautifully if you don’t know Dostoevsky’s books… BROTHERS KARAMAZOV to me is more important than any BIBLE. It has such great insights, that THE BIBLE should not be counted at all, even for comparison. But THE BIBLE will be read — and who is going to bother about BROTHERS KARAMAZOV, in which Dostoevsky has poured his whole soul? or ANNA KARENINA by Leo Tolstoy, or FATHERS AND SONS by Turgenev, or OFFERING OF SONGS by Rabindranath? And these are only a few names; there are thousands who have reached the finest flowering of mind.
First let your mind be decorated. Only beyond this perfumed garden of the mind will you be able to go silently, without any fight; mind will be a help, not a hindrance. I have not found it to be a hindrance; hence I can say with absolute authority: it is not a hindrance. You just don’t know how to use it.
It is possible in this very moment to drop all your prejudices, cleanse your mind. It simply needs absolute decisiveness, ultimate trust, and a love that knows no bounds. But if it cannot happen this moment, I don’t want anybody to become sad and fall into a state of despair. It can happen tomorrow. You can relax, there is no hurry. But please understand the process clearly: Love your body — against all the religions. Love your mind, refine your mind — against all the religions.
And I say to you that fight is not the way; love is the way. Love your body, love your mind, and that very love will create the energy, the atmosphere to transcend the mind, to create what I call meditation or the state of no-mind. It will come. It has to come. Nobody has to go from this temple empty-handed.
This is an excerpt from the transcript of a public discourse by Osho in Buddha Hall, Shree Rajneesh Ashram, Pune.
Discourse series: The Great Pilgrimage: From Here to Here
Chapter title: Human mind is a miracle
12 September 1987 pm in Gautam the Buddha Auditorium
Osho has spoken on ‘Mind, Body, Meditation, Love, Silence’ in His discourses. Some of these can be referred to in the following books/discourses:
- A Bird on The Wing
- Be Still and Know
- Bodhidharma: The Greatest Zen Master
- The Supreme Doctrine
- Eight Four Thousand Poems
- Believing the Impossible Before Breakfast
- The Open Door
- Only Losers Can Win This Game
- Fingers Pointing to The Moon
- The Golden Wind
- God Is Not for Sale
- The Buddha Disease