Sermons in Stones 07

Seventh Discourse from the series of 30 discourses - Sermons in Stones by Osho.
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Is it possible for a woman to be in love and still centered?
The question has many implications.
First, you do not understand what being centered means.
Second, you also have no experience of the phenomenon of love. I can say this with absolute authority, because your question supplies all the evidence for what I am saying.
Love and centering are one phenomenon, they are not two. If you have known love, you cannot be anything but centered.
Love means coming to be at ease with existence. It may be through a lover, it may be through a master, it may be through a friend. Or it may be simply direct and immediate – to the sunrise, to the sunset. The very experience of love will make you centered. This has been the whole philosophy of devotees down the ages. Love is their science; centering is the result.
But there are people – and there are only two kinds of people – who have a dominant reasoning, logic. Their heart is undeveloped. And there are people whose heart is blossoming and now reason, rationality, only function as servants to the heart. Man’s misery is that he is trying to do the impossible: he is trying to force the heart to serve the mind, which is impossible. This is your chaos, this is your mess.
The question has arisen out of the ordinary experience called love. It is not love, it is only called love – just a glimpse, just a small taste, which is not going to be a nourishment. On the contrary it is going to become a pathological state, because one moment you are high and everything is just far out and the next moment all is dark, you cannot believe that there has been anything significant in your life. All those moments of love appear to have happened in dreams, or perhaps you have imagined them. And these dark moments are absolutely joined with the beautiful moments.
This is the dialectics of human mind. It functions through opposites. You will love a man and you will love the man for absolutely wrong reasons. You will love the man or the woman because you are carrying within you an image of the other. The boy has got it from the mother and the girl has got it from the father. All lovers are searching for their mothers, their fathers – and in the final analysis they are all searching for the womb and its beautiful, relaxed state.
Psychologically, the eternal quest for moksha, ultimate liberation, enlightenment, can be reduced to the basic psychological fact that man has already known the most beautiful, the most peaceful state before he was born. Now if something greater does not happen in his life, some exposure to the divine, to the universal, he is going to remain miserable. Because unconsciously, every moment, there is judgment.
He knows he has lived for nine months…and remember, for a child in the mother’s womb, nine months are almost eternity because he does not know how to count, he does not have any clock. Each moment is enough unto itself. He does not know there is going to be another moment afterward, so each moment is a surprise. And with no worry, with no tension about food, about clothes, about shelter, he is absolutely at ease, relaxed, centered. There is nothing to distract him from the center.
There is nobody there even to say hello.
This experience of nine months of being centered, of immense joy, peace, aloneness…the other is no more there; you are the world, you are the whole. Nothing is missing, everything is supplied by nature without any effort on your part. But life confronts you in a totally different way – antagonistically, competitively. Everybody is your enemy, because everybody is in the same market; everybody is your enemy because everybody has the same desires, the same ambition. You are bound to come into conflict with millions of people.
It is because of this inner antagonism that all the cultures of the world have created a certain system of etiquette, familiarity, formality, and they have emphasized it continuously to the child: “You have to respect your father.”
All the cultures all over the world throughout the whole of history – why are they all insisting to the child, “You should respect your father”? There is some suspicion that if he is left alone, the child is not going to respect the father – that much is certain, simple logic. In fact, the child is going to hate. Every girl hates her mother. To hide it – because it will be very difficult to live in a society where all your wounds are uncovered and everybody is walking around with uncovered wounds – a certain ethos, a morality, a certain style of life has to cover it and to show just the opposite – that you love your mother, that you love and respect your father.
Deep down just the opposite is the case. You have been divided into two parts by the society. The false part has been given all respect, because the false is created by the society. The real is denied any respectability, because the real comes from nature – which is beyond the control of any society, culture or civilization. Each child has to be trained in lies, has to be programmed in such a way that he will be subservient to the society, a docile slave.
All societies are breaking the very spine of every child so he becomes spineless. He cannot raise his voice, he cannot question anything. His life is just not his own. He loves, but his love is false. From the very beginning he was told to love his mother “because she is your mother” – as if being a mother has some intrinsic quality or some obligation that you should love her. But it has been accepted that the mother should be loved.
My emphasis is that the mother should be loving, and no child should ever be told to love somebody unless it happens on its own. Yes, the mother, the father, the family can create a milieu without saying anything; the whole energy can generate, can trigger your own forces of love.
But never say to anybody that love is a duty. It is not. Duty is a false substitute for love. When you cannot love, society goes on supplying duties. They may appear to be love, but inside there is nothing loving in it; on the contrary, it is only social formality. And you become so accustomed to social formalities that you forget completely that there are things which are waiting to happen in your life but you are so occupied that you don’t give space, you don’t allow love to blossom in you.
Hence you don’t know that centering and love are one thing.
Centering is more appealing to the intellectual. Nothing has to be believed; there is nobody else to whom you have to surrender.
It is because of the other that every love affair becomes a tragedy.
In Indian literature there are no tragedies. In my student days I was asking my professors, “Why are tragedies missing in Indian literature?” And not a single teacher or professor was able to say something significant about it.
They simply shrugged their shoulders and they said, “You are strange; you find such questions…I have been in this university for thirty years and nobody has asked.”
I said, “To me it seems very obvious that the question has deep roots in the culture. In all other countries except India there are tragedies – beautiful stories, novels, fiction – but in India they are missing. And the reason is…India is a more ancient land than any other land. It has learned many things from experience, and one of them is: that which should not be, should not be talked about; hence there should be no tragedy.”
Their logic can be understood. If man feels that life is everywhere a comedy, then there is a possibility he might continue deceiving himself. He might never tell anybody his problems – because he thinks nobody has problems; why become a laughingstock? Something is wrong with you – just keep quiet. There is no point in exposing yourself to a cruel society which will simply laugh at you and prove that you are an idiot and you don’t know how to live.
But it is not so simple. It is not a question just of knowing how to live. It is a question first of dropping all that is false in you. The false comes from the outside. And when all that is false is dropped and you are utterly naked before existence, the real will start growing in you. This is the situation which has to be fulfilled for the real to grow, to blossom, and to bring you to the ultimate meaning and truth of life.
It has to be remembered: You can start either from centering – and the moment you are centered you will suddenly find immense love overflowing – or you can start from love. And the moment your love is without any jealousy, without any conditionings, but just a sharing of the dance of the heart, you will experience centering.
They are two sides of the same coin. Centering is a more intellectual, scientific method. Love has a different source in you – your heart. It is more poetic, it is more aesthetic, it is more sensitive, it is more feminine, it is more beautiful. And it is easier than centering.
My suggestion is, first drop all false ideas about love. Let something real grow in you, and centering will be coming, enlightenment will be coming.
But if you find it very difficult to start with love, then don’t feel in despair. You can move directly through centering.
You can call it meditation, you can call it awareness. But in each case, the ultimate result is the same: You are centered and overflowing with love.

You usually say that women help men to become enlightened. How is it vice-versa?
Latifa, I usually say that women help men in attaining enlightenment, and you must have been wondering what the situation is vice versa.
To help somebody toward enlightenment needs immense patience, needs great love. The woman has a few higher qualities.
In the first place, the man more or less becomes interested in enlightenment because his wife is interested. Not to be interested in something in which the wife is interested is to keep a cold war going twenty-four hours a day in the house; it is wiser to go with the woman. The vice-versa will be very difficult. The vice-versa means the man pushing the woman toward enlightenment.
In the first place, who is going to look after the house? And a dozen nasty children…just your great contributions to the world. Afraid that one day you will have to die, you are leaving so many examples that whether your name is mentioned in history books or not, it does not matter – the real history will be made by your children. They will rape and they will murder and they will commit suicide and they will do all kinds of great things.
The husband is continuously worried about the financial situation; his whole life is devoted to earning money. He cannot persuade the wife because that will be the end of the family. Then both will have gone toward enlightenment, leaving those nasty children to destroy the neighborhood – just making places for more meditators.
Man is more ambitious. His ambition is mundane. The woman is not ambitious – and to move toward enlightenment you have to drop all your ambitions, all your desires.
Man is more in his head. He goes on continuously thinking, arguing. And there are things – and those are the only significant things – which first you have to experience and only then you can think about. Otherwise, what can you think about? You have heard only an empty word – love. You have no experience; your word love is only a container, empty, with no content inside it.
Man has not been helpful. He would like his children to fulfill all the desires that he has not been able to fulfill. He wants his children to become prime ministers, presidents, the richest people in the world. Those were his desires, those were his father’s desires, those were his grandfather’s desires and in heritage he will give those desires – which are maddening – to his children. He cannot talk about enlightenment.
Latifa is German. Even a German husband cannot manage to force a woman to become enlightened – what to say of other races? – because even the German husband is as henpecked as any husband. In that, there is no difference between the German and the Chinese and the Indian and the Japanese; it does not matter. There is only one kind of husband: henpecked. Whatever you do, you cannot change the situation. And it will be hilarious: a henpecked husband leading a wife toward enlightenment, and that too, in Germany!
No Latifa, don’t wait for a husband. You will have to do it yourself. Yes, once you have done it for yourself, you can drive one or many husbands toward enlightenment, like cattle!
People have been asking me, “Why, in the long history of man, have so very few people become enlightened?”
I said, “What to do? There was nobody to chase them!”
If women decide, you will see husbands in every house standing on their heads meditating, crying, that the time is wasted and the customers must be there and the shop…. But in enlightenment you are not supposed to think about such things as shops and customers.
Women can help, but that much understanding has not come to men yet.
Even the smallest girl has qualities of a grown-up mother; a kind of motherliness surrounds her. That is not true about a boy. You will not find any vibe of fatherliness around him. To be a father is a social institution and to be a mother is a natural phenomenon. Husband and wife are faraway categories.
In India, although we have participated in the crime, the universal crime against women…. There have been people in the East – few, but at least there have been a few people – of great insight, and their insight can be seen in many ways.
In India, you can go and see temples of Sita and Rama, or Radha and Krishna – but have you observed that you always put the name of the woman first and the man second? It is always Sita first, Radha first…and the companion is no ordinary human being; it is a Krishna, it is a Rama. But still the woman is placed first because to her, enlightenment is far easier than a pregnancy. It is also a kind of pregnancy.
The woman knows the language. The man cannot understand it – pregnancy? He can make a woman pregnant but he remains an outsider. His work in giving birth to children is negligible; any syringe can do it. And nature has no preference for men over syringes – they are better used once and disposed of. With man, the difficulty is that once you get caught, it is very difficult to get rid of him. Then the syringe goes on hanging around you for your whole life and the syringe thinks itself very important.
Enlightenment is life’s ultimate fulfillment. The woman is closer, her love is more sincere, her readiness to risk is great. You may be thinking otherwise, but because man thinks, he cannot take a risk. First, he will think and be sure that “success is going to be mine.” Only then will he enter into any challenge.
The woman jumps first and then there is the whole of eternity to think about it.
Latifa, whatever I have said is the best part of the story. It has rarely happened.
It has happened, women have helped their husbands, sacrificed their whole lives, never thought about themselves. Their surrender, their devotion to their lovers has been total. In this totality, they have achieved before their lover has.
Man is fragmented; his mind is going in all the ways, in every direction. Nothing is complete because you have only a certain amount of energy and you are running in so many directions that you will end up just like a mad dog. You will not reach anywhere.
Hearing about enlightenment, man becomes interested in becoming enlightened too, but that is only one of the items on his laundry list – and this is the last item. When everything is dry-cleaned, then finally he will come to me. And here we just do dry-cleaning of your brain, of your mind.
A man goes on thinking about enlightenment, nirvana, truth, but they never seem to become life and death problems. They remain questions – philosophical, theological – and you can go on living the way you are living and you can go on thinking and reading and writing but the world of truth has nothing to do with reading and writing.
When a woman becomes interested in enlightenment, her interest has a totally different quality. It becomes her whole life – not just one item on the laundry list but the only item.
The woman is naturally capable of being one-pointed. That is not true about the man. Both are necessary, both help each other to create a rich life. But they can be great friends about the beyond also. They can help, discuss, meditate together, start changing their loving toward more and more a meditative state.
Men have been helped by women in another way also. The woman has been such a nuisance that because of her, the man started thinking of enlightenment. It is an escape – from the woman! He calls it the world but the woman is the world. And for thousands of years, man has been escaping from the woman, from the children, from the world – but these escapists have not attained anything worthwhile. Through escape, through fear, you cannot attain truth or love.
So in this ugly manner also women have helped men – forced them, rather – toward enlightenment. Men cannot do even this to women.
In a small school, a teacher was asking the students – small boys and girls, “Can any one of you describe a strange animal that nobody else has seen?”
One small boy raised his hand. Even the teacher was surprised – “Where has he found a strange animal?” The whole class could not believe it, because this was the first time…. That small guy was a very silent boy. He used to stay at the back of the class, never creating any nuisance, never asking anything. And he was so certain of his answer that he was raising his hand.
Finally the teacher said, “What is your answer?”
He said, “The animal lives with me.”
The woman said, “What? You are a strange fellow! First, you shocked everybody that you have seen a strange animal that nobody has seen and now you say the animal lives with you?”
He said, “Yes. It is nobody else but my daddy.”
The woman said, “Your daddy? But I am talking about animals!”
And the boy said, “You yourself have said that anima means life, and animals mean ‘those who are living.’ And certainly my father is living. And I call him a strange animal because when he goes from the house, he goes like a lion and when he comes back to the house, he enters like a mouse. He is…outside you should see him! And you would not believe it if will saw him inside the house.”
Man cannot help in that way. He cannot create so much trouble for the woman that she starts thinking of renouncing the world. The man has certainly been helped, rightly or wrongly – rightly, very few times; wrongly, most of the time, he is driven toward enlightenment.
But the ugliest thing man has done is that he has not shown any gratefulness toward women. Whether their means were right or wrong, he has reached enlightenment; at least the woman deserves to be thanked for it. But perhaps they never thought about it in this way. They thought it was because of their understanding of the life of the world that they were going to the Himalayas. It was not understanding, it was really weakness in facing and encountering situations which are on every step in life and remaining silent, peaceful, blissful.
So man has chosen to drop the world and move to the mountains. It has not helped anybody. Those who have moved to the mountains have fallen into a kind of retardedness. Mind is a mechanism, it needs use. It needs situations where either it has to react or to respond or just to remain neutral, a witness, not bothering about it at all. But in the mountains where life is not around you, with just the rocks and with the trees, you will not come to a fight. They will not provoke your anger, your hatred; they will not provoke your ambition, because nobody is trying to be the president there.
A great emperor came to see a Zen master. He brought a beautiful robe, studded with diamonds. He wanted to be initiated into meditation and this was just a small gift.
The Zen master took the gift with great respect, but he said, “You are putting me in an embarrassing situation. It will be very kind of you, if you don’t feel hurt, to please take this robe. It is perfectly suitable in your court. If I use it here, monkeys will giggle, wolves will laugh and the whole mountain will whisper wherever I will go: ‘Look at this idiot! We used to think he was a saint.’ Don’t put me in this embarrassing situation. You take the robe away, it is enough that you brought it.”
Men and women have to live together on the earth but they have not learned yet how to be together and yet not lose their individuality, how to be together so much so that they are almost one, without disturbing this oneness in mundane affairs.
Man and woman both can help – and if the right kind of help is available, there will be no need for man to escape to the mountains, to the caves, to the monasteries. There is no need, because you cannot find a better place than your home. A loving atmosphere, people who understand you, people who understand your silence and your meditation, will go hand-in-hand with your love. Even if you get into meditation in the mountains, you will have only one wing. You will not be able to fly to the sun. The other wing you have left in the world, which could have been a tremendous help to you, and you could have been a great help in return.
If a couple gets initiated into meditation together, they are really getting married for the first time. As for your other registration certificates for marriage – they are not valid for me.
To me, there is only one certificate that existence gives you – where love and meditation have been helping each other, supporting each other and opening the doors of the sky for your flight, the flight of the alone to the alone.

The German psychologist, Wilhelm Reich, stumbled upon some inner secrets of bio-energy. He also started practicing these on his patients but he was declared anti-social, was imprisoned and pronounced mad. Osho, what is it that Reich was working on and where did he go wrong. What was he missing?
Wilhelm Reich is one of the most important names in the world of psychology. Perhaps he was second only to Sigmund Freud – but he was the youngest disciple of Sigmund Freud and before I answer your question, I have remembered something which is the only incident in the long life of Sigmund Freud which shows something of Zen. It is something which was always present around the great masters but you can’t expect it in Sigmund Freud’s life. I want to tell you about it for the important reason that even a man like Sigmund Freud has the potential of being a mystic. If he missed it, that is another thing.
Wilhelm Reich was continually writing letters to Sigmund Freud. He was young – perhaps thirty-five, half the age of Sigmund Freud – and Sigmund Freud was not interested in such a young person. His work was long and he had old colleagues with whom he was working and his movement had become almost international. Now he was unable to go on taking new students and new responsibilities, so he refused. And he refused his best student.
But Wilhelm Reich was a German, stubborn; you could not just reject him and then things are finished. He went anyway to an appointment that had been canceled. He knocked on the door and Sigmund Freud himself opened the door. They looked at each other. There was a moment of silence.
Sigmund Freud said, “But I have canceled the meeting.”
Wilhelm Reich said, “But I have not – and certainly a meeting means a meeting of two persons, so it is only you who has canceled it. From my side, I am still available and I thought that I should present myself because I have not canceled it.”
Sigmund Freud again looked at Wilhelm Reich as if hesitating or weighing…”What to do with this man?” He said to him, “I am old. You are too young; I will not be able to finish my teaching. And you may not agree with me because there is a generation gap. So why waste your time? Start on your own, you have my blessings.”
With tears in his eyes, Wilhelm Reich thanked Sigmund Freud and returned home. He learned about human energies, about the functioning of the mind, about levels of consciousness – and it was good that he was refused, because he opened a totally new door and he went on thanking Sigmund Freud his whole life; “If he had not refused me, I would have been just a Freudian. At that moment I was hurt but I am immensely obliged to him that he left me alone. I had to start from scratch but I went in a totally different direction and now I can see that all of Sigmund Freud’s work is dream analysis and has nothing to do with reality.”
Dreams are only shadows. At the most, psychoanalysis can give you normal dreams, can help you to avoid nightmares. But more than that has not happened.
Wilhelm Reich started working on human energy. Naturally, if you work on human energy you are going to come to the source of all – that is sexual energy. The moment he touched upon sexual energy, all the religions were against him. The government was against him, the psychologists were against him, and his situation was a very strange one.
He had come to experience that when two lovers are approaching closer to each other, there is a magnetic force – if there is love. If there is no love, then only two bodies meet, but not two energies.
He had a scientific mind. He made a box in which two persons would make love. His idea was that the energy love creates can be caught and can be used. Now this was a troublesome thing. He could not show anything – the box was empty. There was no way to materialize the biological energy, but he gathered every possible evidence.
Somebody was suffering from impotence. Wilhelm Reich would put him in the box and his impotence would disappear, at least for a few days, as if his battery had been recharged. It was an indirect proof but something had happened. In the box, something had happened, the box was not empty.
He told lovers, “Even without loving, you can simply lie down, cuddling, melting into each other.” His work was strange, hard…and it was made more difficult by the society because they started immediately condemning him, saying that he was in conspiracy with the devil – just like me! – saying that sex had to be renounced and he was teaching people some strange exercises.
Those strange exercises show his genius. He had no idea of Tantra, he had never been to the East. But the exercises that he found are ten thousand years old. He discovered them and thousands of witnesses who were healed by him…because soon he started healing other patients, not only the sexual ones. Because sex energy is pure energy, it can be converted into many forms. It can become your intelligence, it can become your silence. He started treating people.
The treatment was simple: he would just put them in the box. They would remain for fifteen minutes or twenty minutes, a few sessions – and they were cured. But medical science was against him because “this man cannot practice medicine.”
This is how law is blind. This man cured thousands of people of strange diseases which were not curable by ordinary, official medicine but that couldn’t be counted. The question was whether he had a registration: “Is he licensed to practice?”
Wilhelm Reich said, “I don’t use medicine, I don’t prescribe anything. My whole medicine is the box. If you accept it as medicine, then the medical faculties of your universities have to prove what kind of medicine is there. When I tell you to look into what I have found, you think I am crazy and when I cure people, then I am criminal. I have not harmed anybody.”
But medical science, the Christian Church, the government – all started many cases against him. You can start any case – it may be absolutely false, unfounded, but you can harass the person for years. So many cases…and the man became so tense and there was nobody to support him, not even the people of his own profession. They were against him because their psychoanalysis would die if his energy box succeeded.
Medicine is not ready to accept somebody who has no medical certificates. His friends left him. He was in great agony because he knew he had found something of great value for humanity and he also saw that he could not convince anybody. He was only convincing people that he was crazy. People were simply laughing, making cartoons, bringing court cases against him.
Finally he was jailed because he was practicing medicine without a license. Now you see the tricky world. He was not practicing medicine, he was practicing healing – that you can say, but you cannot say he was practicing medicine. He had not harmed anybody, and he was ready to cooperate with any research group. He was available to talk about everything he had discovered.
But his discoveries were going against Christianity, his discoveries were going against your so-called morality. His discoveries were going against your whole social structure, educational structure, political structure.
He was one of the greatest revolutionaries ever and he has remained unknown, unrespected, unremembered. And in jail, they must have tortured him immensely. He was not a man who can fall apart easily; he was a very integrated person and the people who knew him testified that it is very difficult to find such a strong, well-rooted and grounded person – but he went mad in jail.
I suspect he was forced to go into madness. It is very easy to drive anybody mad when all the powers are in your hands and the person is made absolutely helpless. When he became mad…. This is the world: when he was at the peak of his fame, there were friends, there were colleagues, there was a beautiful woman who loved him. But when he came out of jail, the woman divorced him, the friends disappeared, the colleagues made it clear to him that they didn’t want any more connection with him because even to be connected with him created suspicion.
It is sad that he died, but I will say he was forced to die. If you boycott a person in such a way that he becomes an island in the great ocean of humanity – separate, isolated, cannot communicate with anybody, everybody thinks he is mad – naturally, his will to live will disappear.
He shrank and died. And it is strange that after his death his work has remained where he left it. It has immense potentiality. It needs to be developed and it needs to be developed in collaboration with Tantra.
I call Wilhelm Reich a modern Tantra master, although he was not aware of it. Perhaps in his past lives he may have known the secrets of Tantra – because his work contained the secrets of Tantra.
You will not believe that in India there were at one time, two thousand years ago, two hundred thousand followers of a special group of tantrikas. They lived naked. Couples used one gown, just one loose gown around both, made of a special silk which prevented the radiation of any kind of energy from going out or in. They would go for begging or anything but they would remain together, naked, in their gown.
They were doing a great experiment, of melting and mixing the female and the male bio-electricity. Because the very meeting of this bio-electricity can help you to go into deep meditation without much effort in fighting with your thoughts. There were one hundred thousand couples and Raja Bhoj, the king in those days, was so furious – “This is destroying our whole morality, this is corrupting our children. Children will see and they will ask, what kind of people are these? – naked in one gown…. These people will corrupt our whole religion and tradition.”
Bhoj decided to kill all of them. One hundred thousand couples – that means two hundred thousand people – were killed all over the country, burned alive. Not a single couple was left alive; their literature was burned, their temples were burned. Never before or after has any tradition been so brutally destroyed, so inhumanely destroyed.
But when you bring up the subject of sex, immediately you annoy all the people who are in power because nobody who is in power wants people to live to their optimum sexually. They want you to live your minimum sexually because at the minimum you can be enslaved. At the maximum, you are so powerful, you are so intelligent – you are a rock and you cannot be destroyed. Whoever tries to destroy you will be destroyed.
Wilhelm Reich will have a revival because what he was doing was absolutely scientific. No Christianity can prevent it, no government can prevent it. And perhaps….
I have so many sannyasins educated in psychology, in psychoanalysis, in analytical psychology and different schools – perhaps a few of my sannyasins will start working on Wilhelm Reich. He belongs to us. I give him posthumous sannyas.

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