Today is the birthday of top- billed actress, singer and model of 1950’s, Marilyn Monroe. She was the most highlighted celebrity of her times due to her boldness in the field of sensuality. In 1950’s and early 1960’s she was considered as the sex symbol due to her blonde bombshell characters she use to play in her movies.
By 1953, Monroe was one of the most marketable Hollywood stars; she had leading roles in the film noir Niagara, which focused on her sex appeal, and the comedies Gentlemen Prefer Blondes and How to Marry a Millionaire, which established her star image as a “dumb blonde”. The same year, her nude images were used as the centerfold and on the cover of the first issue of Playboy. She won a Golden Globe for Best Actress for her work in Some Like It Hot (1959), Her last completed film was the drama The Misfits (1961).
Monroe’s sudden death was front-page news in the United States and Europe. It is said that the suicide rate in Los Angeles doubled the month after she died.
Osho says Films, stories, incidents, create their own atmosphere. When Marilyn Monroe committed suicide in 1962, the suicide rate in many cities of America went very high for a few days. It was five times more in New York and Chicago and San Francisco — five times more than usual. Just one woman committed suicide. Many suicidal people are there; suddenly they got the message. Suddenly they were obsessed with it. People live by imitation, and when Monroe, such a beautiful woman, can commit suicide, then why bother? You can also do it. People simply go on doing things by imitation. In Japan in 1950, one schoolgirl jumped in a volcano crater. Then within two months three hundred schoolgirls jumped in the same crater. What happened? What madness? Things spread like infection. Man is so mad, just waiting for anything to trigger him. And you are also prone. Remember that. Anything can become a trigger-point. That’s why I insist — never imitate, never become a carbon copy to anybody. Try to become yourself, try to be yourself. Protect your individuality and don’t get lost in a crowd, don’t become part of the collective mind.
WHAT IS THE NEED FOR SECRECY IN MASTERDISCIPLE RELATIONSHIPS AND ALSO IN ORDINARY HUMAN RELATIONSHIPS?
THE BEING HAS TWO SIDES, the without and the within. The without can be public, but the within cannot be. If you make the within public, you will lose your soul, you will lose your original face. Then you will live as if you have no inner being. Life will become drab, futile.
It happens to people who lead a public life: politicians, film actors. They become public, they lose their inner being completely, they don’t know who they are except what the public says about them. They depend on others’ opinion, they don’t have a sense of their being.
One of the most famous actresses, Marilyn Monroe, committed suicide, and psychoanalysts have been brooding on the reason why. She was one of the beautiful women ever, one of the most successful. Even the President of America Kennedy, was in love with here, and she had thousands of lovers. One cannot think of what more you can have. She had everything.
But she was public and she knew it. Even in her love chamber when President Kennedy would be there she used to address him as Mr. President — as if one was making love not to man, but to an institution. She was an institution. By and by she became aware that she had nothing private. Once somebody asked here — she had just posed for a nude calendar and somebody asked, “Did you have anything on while you posed for the nude calendar?” She said, “Yes, I had something on. The radio.”
Exposed, nude, no private self. My feeling is that she committed suicide because that was the only thing left she could have done privately. Everything was public, that was the only thing left she could do on her own, alone, something absolutely intimate and secret. Public figures are always tempted towards suicide because only through suicide can they have a glimpse of who they are. All that is beautiful is inner, and the inner means privacy. Have you watched women making love? They always close their eyes. They know something. A man goes on making love with open eyes, he remains a watcher also. He is not completely in the act, he is not totally in it. He remains a voyeur, as if somebody else is making love and he is watching, as if the love-making is going on a TV screen or in a movie. But a woman knows better because she is more delicately tuned to the inner. She always closes her eyes. Then love has a totally different fragrance.
Do one thing one day: run the bath and then switch on and off the light. When there is darkness you will hear the water falling more clearly, the sound will be sharp. When the light is on, the sound will be not so sharp. What happens in darkness? In darkness, everything else disappears because you cannot see. Only you and the sound are there. That’s why, in all good restaurants, light is avoided; sharp light is avoided. They are candle-lit. Whenever a restaurant is candle-lit, taste is deeper: you eat well and you taste more. The fragrance surrounds you. If there is very bright light the taste is no longer there. The eyes make everything public. In the very first sentence of his METAPHYSICS, Aristotle says that sight is the highest sense of man. It is not. In fact, sight has become too domineering. It has monopolized the whole self and it has destroyed all the other senses. His master — Aristotle’s master, Plato — says that there is a hierarchy in the senses: sight at the top, touch at the bottom. He is absolutely wrong. There is no hierarchy.
All senses are on the same level and there should not be any hierarchy. But you live through the eyes: eighty percent of your life is eye-oriented. This should not be so; a balance has to be restored. You should touch also, because touch has something which eyes cannot give. But try: try to touch the woman you love or the man you love in bright light and then touch in darkness. In darkness, the body reveals itself; in bright light, it hides. Have you seen Renoir’s paintings of feminine bodies? They have something miraculous in them. Many painters have painted the feminine body, but there is no comparison with Renoir. What is the difference? All other painters have painted the feminine body as it looks to the eyes. Renoir has painted it as it feels to the hands, so the painting has a warmth and a closeness, an aliveness. When you touch, something happens very close. When you see, something is far away.
In darkness, in secrecy, in privacy, something is revealed which cannot be revealed in openness, in the marketplace. Others are seeing and observing; something deep within you shrinks, it cannot flower. It is just as if you put seeds down on the open ground, for everybody to look at. They will never sprout. They need to be thrown deep in the womb of the earth, in deep darkness where nobody can see them. There they start sprouting and a great tree is born. Just like seeds need darkness and privacy in the earth, all relationships which are deep and intimate remain inner. They need privacy, they need a place where only two exist. Then a moment comes when even the two dissolve and only one exists. Two lovers deeply in tune with each other dissolve. Only one exists. They breathe together, they are together; a togetherness exists. This would not be possible if observers were there. They would never be able to let go if others were watching. The very eyes of others would become the barrier. So all that is beautiful, all that is deep, happens in darkness.
In ordinary human relationships, privacy is needed. And when you ask about the relationship of a Master and disciple, even more privacy is needed because it is a transmission of the highest energy possible to man. It is the highest peak of love, where one man pours himself into another and the other becomes a receptive womb. Even a slight disturbance — somebody watching — will be enough of a barrier. Secrecy has its own reason to be there. Remember that, and always remember that you will behave very foolishly in life if you become completely public. It will be as if somebody has turned his pockets inside-out. That will be your shape — like pockets turned inside-out. Nothing is wrong in being outward but remember, that is only part of life. It should not become the whole. I am not saying to move in darkness forever. Light has its own beauty and its own reason. If the seed remains in the dark forever and ever, and never comes up to receive the sun in the morning, it will be dead. It has to go into darkness to sprout, to gather strength, to become vital, to be reborn, and then it has to come out and face the world and the light and the storm and the rains. It has to accept the challenge of the outside.
But that challenge can only be accepted if you are deeply rooted within. I am not saying to become escapists, I am not saying to close your eyes, move within and never come out.
I am simply saying: go in so that you can come out with energy, with love, with compassion. Go in so that when you come out you are not a beggar, but a king;
go in so that when you come out you have something to share — the flowers, the leaves. Go in so that your coming out becomes richer and is not impoverished.
And always remember that whenever you feel exhausted, the source of energy is within. Close your eyes and go in. Make outer relationships; make inner relationships also. Of course there are bound to be outer relationships — you move in the world, business relationships will be there — but they should not be all. They have their part to play, but there must be something absolutely secret and private, something that you can call your own.
That is what Marilyn Monroe lacked. She was a public woman — successful, yet completely a failure. While she was at the top of her success and fame, she committed suicide. Why she committed suicide has remained an enigma. She had everything to live for; you cannot conceive of more fame, more success, more charisma, more beauty, more health. Everything was there, nothing could be improved upon, and still something was lacking. The inside, the within, was empty. Then, suicide is the only way.
You may not be daring enough to commit suicide like Marilyn Monroe. You may be very cowardly and you may commit suicide very slowly — you may take seventy years to commit it. But still it will be a suicide. Unless you have something inside you which is not dependent on anything outside, which is just your own — a world, a space of your own where you can close your eyes and move, and you can forget that anything else exists — you will be committing suicide.
Life arises from that inner source and spreads into the sky outside. There has to be a balance — I am always for balance. So I will not say, like Mahatma Gandhi, that your life should be an open book — no. A few chapters open, okay. And a few chapters completely closed, completely a mystery. If you are just an open book you will be a prostitute, you will just be standing in the marketplace naked, with just the radio on. No, that won’t do. If the whole book is open, you will just be the day with no night, just the summer with no winter. Then where will you rest and where will you center yourself and where will you take refuge? Where will you move when the world is too much with you? Where will you go to pray and meditate? No, half and half is perfect. Let half of your book be open — open to everybody, available to everybody — and let the other half of your book be so secret that only rare guests are allowed there. Only rarely is somebody allowed to move within your temple. That is how it should be. If the crowd is coming in and going out, then the temple is no longer a temple. It may be a waiting room in an airport, but it cannot be a temple. Only rarely, very rarely, do you allow somebody to enter your self. That is what love is.
This is an excerpt from the transcript of a public discourse by Osho in Buddha Hall, Shree Rajneesh Ashram, Pune.
Discourse Series: Come Follow To You, Vol 1
Chapter title: The luxury of God
26 October 1975 am in Buddha Hall
Osho has spoken extensively on ‘art, music, painting, poetry, dance’ and creative geniuses like Picasso, Salvador Dali, Van Gogh, Byron, Bhavabhuti, Coleridge, Dinkar, D.H. Lawrence, Ghalib, John Ruskin, Kalidas, Kahlil Gibran, Keats, Omar Khayyam, Milton, Mozart, Yeats, Shelley, Tagore, Wagner, Frank Sinatra, Charlie Chaplin and many more in the course of His talks. More on this subject can be referred to in the following books/discourse titles: