Meditation: Nobody’s Copyright, Everybody’s Birthright
Osho on “why no ‘Copyright’ of Meditation”
THE OTHER DAY WAS MY EIGHTH SANNYAS BIRTHDAY. ALTHOUGH IT IS SUCH A LONG TIME I OFTEN HAVE THE FEELING THAT I HAVE JUST STARTED TO UNDERSTAND WHAT IT MEANS TO BE A SANNYASIN, AND I HAVE JUST VERY SHORT GLIMPSES OF THAT SILENCE. ON THE OTHER HAND, IT FEELS FOR ME THAT SANNYAS HAS BECOME SLOWLY, ALMOST UNKNOWINGLY, THE MEDIUM MY WHOLE LIFE FLOWS IN, LIKE A FISH IN THE SEA.
BELOVED MASTER, AM I TOO SLEEPY AND MOVING TOO SLOWLY?
Prem Satyo, not only are you moving slowly, your question is also moving slowly. Every day I think to answer it — it must have been with me almost two weeks… and still you say “the other day.” Finally I have decided to put it on top; otherwise you would have to write the other year…!
The experience of sannyas… silence, beauty and gratitude all deepen slowly, so slowly that you don’t know that you are moving at all.
Have you seen the trees when they grow in the night and you are asleep? Do you know when the flowers open when you are looking the other way? Have you observed when you became young and childhood has disappeared — or you became old and youth is no longer there?
Existence does not believe in speed. Existence believes in a very slow, silent growth. Soon you become one with your meditation, with your silence. Soon you start feeling the beautitude, the blissfulness as part of your breathing. You are still growing, you are still going on the pilgrimage. It is an unending journey, but it is so slow.
Existence knows no hurry, because it has no shortage of time. Eternity is its time — it has no beginning and no end.
For example, in the East people are not very speedy; in the West speed is their God. And the reason is that all the religions which are born outside India — Judaism, Christianity and Mohammedanism — believe only in one life. They give you only seventy years. One third of it you will be asleep, one third you will be working for your livelihood, and the remaining one third you will be watching TV because you are a member of The Couch Potato Movement. Only in between you may smoke a cigarette, or you may kiss a woman, in a hurry because the television is on…The reason the whole Western world and the education that has spread all over the world from the West has caused you to do everything quickly, is because death is not far away. Seventy years is not long…
In the East it is totally different….
When the first railway lines were made in India, a British engineer was observing the work. He saw an old Indian coming every day, sitting under a shady tree, and watching the whole work.
The British engineer could not resist the temptation. He said, “You come here… the whole day you are here — why don’t you join in the work?”
The man said, “For what?”
He said, “For what? You will earn money.”
The man said, “But for what?”
The engineer said, “Then you can relax under a tree.”
The man said, “This is stupid, I’m already resting under a tree. Why should I bother first to work, then to earn money, and then to rest under a tree, when I can relax in the very first place?”
The Eastern religions — Buddhism, Jainism, Hinduism — all three were born in India and believe in reincarnation. That gives a tremendous expansion to your existence. Then you are not going to end in seventy years — there is no hurry. If not in this life, then we will see in the next. If I cannot meet you this life, I can say I will meet you next life… what is the problem? The centuries-old ideology that there are millions of lives has taken away the feverish speediness — one life, another life, another life… It has taken away the fear of death.
Your worry that it seems your sannyas has just started… If the seed has started and has become a sprout, the spring will come and you will be full of the flowers of your being, of your truth. There is no hurry and there is no need to be in a hurry…You have asked a beautiful question. The first implication of it is that
the day you take the initiation into sannyas is not necessarily the beginning of sannyas. It is simply your indication that, “I am willing to wait for sannyas to happen to me.” Initiation is only your saying yes to existence, and opening all your doors and windows for the fresh breeze and the sun to enter and cleanse you and make you part of the whole. Some day sannyas will begin. It can begin in the moment of initiation, if your intensity, integrity, your trust and your love are total, but it is rarely so.
It is always sixty percent, forty percent; seventy percent, thirty percent… There are people who may have ninety-nine percent trust, but that one percent doubt is enough to prevent… years, even lives. Unless you are one hundred percent open,
unless the very word `no’ has dropped from your vocabulary, the great revolution of sannyas will not happen to you.
Just this morning I said to Shunyo that Anando has too much work — and I go on loading her with more and more work. I go on calling her morning, evening and night. And if I don’t call her she waits; if I don’t call her I feel guilty that she must be waiting. And the strangest thing is she has never said no to anything. Howsoever burdened, she immediately is ready to take on a new project, knowing that it is almost impossible for her to do all these things. But if I am saying it, that is enough for her: “There must be the potential in me which I am not aware of — but my master has to be aware. If he is saying, `Do it,’ I will do it.” I have never heard even a hesitation.
Sannyas needs a total yes and then it can happen this very moment. But your small doubt — it may be just very small — is just like a small piece of sand in your eyes, and you cannot open your eyes. Just a small piece of sand can deprive you of seeing this whole beautiful world.
Doubt is just like a small piece of sand in your inner eye. It can prevent you from seeing the splendor and the glory of life, your own potential and your own flowers which have been waiting for lives to grow and blossom, but you have not given the chance.
And your feeling that slowly it seems sannyas has become “almost unknowingly, the medium my whole life flows in, like a fish in the sea… am I too sleepy and moving too slowly?” — both are good…
Existence is moving. In this whole existence, except change, nothing is permanent. Only change does not change. Everything else changes. You are growing old, even without feeling it — and it is an absolute certainty that you are growing old. Do you think people suddenly jump and become old? They were going home and on the way suddenly they jump and they have become old? They have been becoming old when they were going to the office, when they were coming home. When they were sleeping they were becoming old. Whatever they were doing, change was continuous.
If your silence has become almost like breathing, a part of your being, just as with the circulation of the blood, then there is no need to be worried that you are too slow. In the inner world there is no question of speed. In the inner world everything is growing naturally according to its own pace. You cannot make somebody enlightened, forcibly, on the point of a gun: “Become enlightened!” There is no way, even if the person says, “Okay, I am enlightened.” He knows and you know that enlightenment does not happen on the point of a gun…
Prem Satyo, you are doing perfectly well. Sleepily and slowly the light will come to you, the truth will awaken in your being. It is in fact already there. Just silently it will make its presence felt without any whisper and without any notice. Spontaneously and suddenly, one suddenly feels, “My God, what I have been seeking is sitting within me; in fact, what I am seeking is what I am: I am seeking myself. There is no need for seeking. I cannot be otherwise; I am myself.”
Just be silent, utterly silent. Let peace descend over you, and the revelation of the mysterious truth of existence is yours.
I hope you will not misunderstand me, because this is my destiny to be misunderstood. I am not saying for you to be happily asleep… not to worry that whenever the spring will come it will bring flowers. I am saying to you, respect your slow growth and even in your sleepiness, don’t lose track of awareness. Sleepiness is not sleep. Just within the circle of sleepiness there is burning a small flame of awareness. Who is aware of sleepiness and who is aware of slowness?
This awareness has to be sharpened more and more, like a sword.
The day your awareness is total and complete is the day your enlightenment has come. So I am not supporting your sleepiness, I am supporting you to be aware of your sleepiness.
I am supporting your awareness.
I am supporting your awareness of slow growth. That awareness is your real treasure.
Little Ernie trots into the bathroom just as his pregnant mother is getting out of the bath.
“What is that?” he asks, pointing at her bulging belly.
Feeling a bit embarrassed, and not wanting to explain all about the birds and the bees, his mother tells him, “It is a present Daddy gave me.”
A bit puzzled by this reply, little Ernie goes into the kitchen, where his father is reading the newspaper over breakfast.
“Dad?” says Ernie.
“Yes, Ernie,” replies his father.
“You know that present you gave Mummy?” asks Ernie.
“Yes, son,” replies his father.
“Well,” says Ernie, “she has gone and eaten it!”
Just don’t misunderstand me. Whatever I say is possible always to be misunderstood, because I am not talking about the ordinary world of things and objects. I am talking about the inner world of consciousness and being.
Just today a letter has arrived from Germany. Our sannyasins are doing a meditation called The Four Directions. The letter says, “In your commune people are doing a meditation called The Four Directions, and we have the copyright over it.”
I have told Neelam, my secretary, to write to them,
“Things can be copyrighted, thoughts cannot be copyrighted, and certainly meditations cannot be copyrighted. They are not things of the marketplace.”
Nobody can monopolize anything. But perhaps the West cannot understand the difference between an objective commodity and an inner experience.
Maharishi Mahesh Yogi has copyrighted transcendental meditation and just underneath in a small circle you will find written TM — that means trademark! For ten thousand years the East has been meditating and nobody has put trademarks upon meditations. And above all, that transcendental meditation is neither transcendental nor meditation… just a trademark.
I have told Neelam to reply to these people, “You don’t understand what meditation is. It is nobody’s belonging, possession. You cannot have any copyright. Perhaps if your country gives you trademarks and copyrights on things like meditation, then it will be good to have a copyright on stupidity. That will help the whole world to be relieved… Only you will be stupid and nobody else can be stupid; it will be illegal.”
I am going to direct my people here that they do the meditation called The Four Directions. But there are eight directions not four! Start doing the meditation Eight Directions — and certainly under eight directions, their four directions also come in. But apart from their stupid letters and their stupid government which gives copyrights for such inner experiences, the truth is that consciousness cannot be either four directions or eight directions. Consciousness is a circle: no directions. It is neither directing to the north nor directing to the south. It simply is a circle. So my suggestion to you is that the best will be to call it “No Directions.”
We are going to sue those idiots who think they have a copyright over consciousness, in the courts in Germany. Then we can get a copyright over enlightenment. Then nobody can become enlightened, unless we license him.
This is an excerpt from the transcript of a public discourse by Osho in Buddha Hall, Shree Rajneesh Ashram, Pune.
Discourse Series: Om Shantih Shantih Shantih
Chapter title: Existence does not believe in speed
17 March 1988 pm in Gautam the Buddha Auditorium
Osho has spoken on ‘why no ‘Copyright or trademark’ of Meditation’ in many of His discourses. More on the subject can be referred to in the following books/discourses:
- The Book of Wisdom
- From Darkness to Light
- The Great Pilgrimage: From Here to Here
- Light on the Path
- No Mind: The Flowers of Eternity
- Zen: The Special Transmission