Sermons in Stones 23

TwentyThird Discourse from the series of 30 discourses - Sermons in Stones by Osho.
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I'm often tortured by the idea that I have to do something special to realize myself. A few years ago, I was on the point of becoming a psychoanalyst. Fortunately, I dropped this idea and I took sannyas. I tried to work as a doctor, but I was getting so tense that I was no longer loving with the people who were coming to me. Now I do simple jobs but still the idea is there: am I wasting my time? Am I running away from my responsibility? On the other hand, every time this idea of doing was dropped, I experienced days of bliss. Can you please tell me something more about the difference between doing and being?
It is one of the most significant questions for a seeker: the difference between doing and being.
You are born as beings. In your mother’s womb, you are just a being. Then life begins to teach you how to do things: how to be successful, how to be rich, how to be famous, how to be powerful. There are a thousand and one “hows”, and you see around you a whole world engaged in doing something or other.
And in a way, there are things which can only be done. For example, if you want money, you will have to work hard for it – or you can go the easy way, but that will be criminal. If you want to be a powerful politician, you will forget all about morality, humanity. You have to forget all great values of life, you have to concentrate only on one thing: your ambition for power. And you have to do everything – right or wrong, good or bad, anything that helps you to achieve your ambition. You are not to be worried about means and ends; once you are successful, whatever you have done will be known as right. Your success changes the wrong means into right means, and your failure changes your right means into wrong means.
Seeing the situation, one starts following the ways of the world. One starts running for goals, for recognition, for respectability – one is ready to do anything. But the more one gets involved in doings, the more one starts going away from oneself.
Each act takes you away from yourself, and the further away the goal is, the further away you have gone from yourself.
No doing can help you to realize yourself, to know yourself, to be yourself. It is not a question of doing; you have to learn a totally different art than the arts which are based on doing. You have to learn just to be – silent, not running anywhere, no goal in the future, no desire to possess mundane things.
Relaxing into yourself – to such an extent that time stops, mind stops – you simply are. A kind of isness…this is your being. In its purity, it is the most beautiful flower in the whole existence. Lotuses and roses are very jealous of it.
The moment you have tasted just a little bit the nectar of being silent, cool, centered…your whole life is going to change from this moment. Because this taste is not something that anybody has ever been able to forget; on the contrary, this taste of your own being makes you forget the whole world.
In fact, right now you don’t have any inner world, or even if you have, you are not aware of it – which is almost the same. Whether it is there or not makes no difference to you; you know only the world of matter and objects. You know everything around you, except yourself.
You are illusory and the whole world is real; money is real, power is real. You…even you don’t know who you are. You have never come to encounter yourself.
I have heard…. In a train, two Englishmen were traveling. Then the train stopped and one of them got out of the train. His wife had come to meet him…but he looked very pale, sick.
She asked, “What is the matter, is something wrong with you?”
He said, “Yes. Whenever I have to sit, not facing toward the direction the train is going but facing the opposite way, then my whole body goes through a kind of feverish throbbing.”
The wife said, “But you could have changed your seat rather than getting sick.”
He said, “I wanted to, but another Englishman was sitting on the other seat.”
So she said, “What is the matter in that? You could have told him your problem and he would have considered it; it is not a problem for everybody.”
He said, “You are right, but how could I have said anything to him? because nobody has introduced me to him, and without an introduction….”
But it is not only about the Englishman – as far as the world of being is concerned, you have never entered it because nobody has introduced you to it. Nobody has given you a challenge to explore yourself.
Man has accepted challenges from the moon, from Everest, from Mars…and man goes on and on without knowing himself.
Until the moment all action – even the movement of thoughts is action – stops, you will not be able to know what being is, because action functions like a thick smoke around you. There are so many thoughts, so many emotions, so many sentiments, so many moods…you are surrounded by an invisible wall, but very thick – almost as thick as the Chinese wall; a car can go on top of it, it is as wide as a road. But it is invisible. So you go on carrying all this weight for your whole life, getting more and more miserable and not knowing that misery is not the nature of existence.
Misery is manufactured by man – existence is just playfulness, bliss. It is a song, it is a dance, it is a continuous celebration all the year round.
When you stop acting, doing, when you collect your consciousness at the very center of your individuality, you will be able to see a door opening into another world – the other world, the sacred world.
Outside you is the world of action.
Inside you is the world of being.
Action is mundane – it is necessary, but it cannot make your life a joy unto itself. It is necessary for survival – but just survival is not enough for a dance. For a dance, you need energy overflowing; you cannot contain it anymore. And one of the miracles of life is that by great action, you produce small things of no intrinsic value, and without any effort, being opens doors upon doors of treasures which you have never dreamt of. You have only heard the word – blissfulness, ecstasy, samadhi, nirvana, enlightenment – different names for the same situation.
You have come home so totally that the outside world, which used to be very real, is almost like a dream that you had seen somewhere and forgotten.
That’s why the mystics have been calling the world illusory, maya, and they call the world of being the ultimate reality.

You said a few days ago, “I love you like nobody could ever love you.” I know in my heart that it is true. I would also like to tell you that I love you more than anyone I could ever love. Without you, my life is absolutely meaningless. When I took sannyas, I used to say I would die for you, I'm ready to give my life to you. Now I say I would like to live for you and I'm ready to give my life to you. Thank you for the life you are giving me. I bow down to you with inexpressible gratitude.
There is a great insight in your question. For the whole of the past, people have been told by religions, by politicians, by other kinds of fanatics, that if you are dedicated to any ideology – religious, political, social, philosophical – if you are really dedicated to an ideology, then you should be ready to die for it. The readiness to die is an indication from your side that your dedication is total.
This is not so, according to me. Your dedication is total if you are ready to live for me, not to die – because death is so easy, it is so simple to jump into the ocean. Even others can help. But to live, year after year, in an insane world, needs great dedication and great love and great devotion.
Your love should be so great that it can tolerate the whole insanity of the world; it is still worth living because of your dedication, because of your love. Your love creates a small, cozy corner in this insane world, a cozy corner of your own life which is sane.
I teach you life, not death, because to me, death does not exist at all. If you have lived – and lived with intensity, lived with totality, lived with your whole being, not holding anything back – you will know not only life and its eternity, you will also know simultaneously death and its illusoriness.
In the past, the people who were teaching that your death is the only proof that your dedication is total were really exploiting you, destroying you, encouraging your suicidal instinct.
Man has a suicidal instinct – this is one of the latest discoveries by psychoanalysts and other psychologists – just as there is a deep lust for life. One wants to live – and people are living in such conditions; just go around Bombay and see the beggars, see the people living in slums. Somebody is blind, somebody is crippled, somebody is starving; somebody has no medicines, is sick; somebody is old and still dragging, there is no point in living. But why do these people go on? There is such a deep lust for life that one can tolerate anything.
It happened…in an Egyptian monastery, a monk went into a coma. But it was misunderstood by the other monks and the chief monk; they thought he had died.
The monastery had a graveyard, underground. They simply used to open the door…and it was a deep hole, sixty feet deep, with miles of tunnels inside, because the monastery had been there for thousands of years. All the monks who died were dropped into the underground tunnel.
This young man was also dropped – and the door was sealed, because it was not something to be opened every day. Once in a while, somebody dies…but the man was not dead. After a few hours, his consciousness returned. He could not figure out where he was. By and by, he became accustomed to the darkness, started groping, and then stumbled against corpses. Then he understood what had happened, they had misunderstood: “I have fallen in a coma.”
It was a disease he had suffered since his childhood but it came only once in five or six years, so he had never mentioned it to anybody. But now it was too late. He tried his best – shouting, screaming – but in a sixty-foot hole, completely closed, who was going to hear him? It is difficult to hear even if the person is sitting in front of you; who is going to hear this dead fellow?
After a few efforts, he dropped it, but he could not drop the lust for life. But how to live in that graveyard? – no sunlight, no fresh air…it was disgusting. The smell of thousands of bodies which had become rotten…but man has the capacity to survive, to adjust in any kind of situation.
For a few days it was difficult, but slowly, slowly he started eating the rotten flesh of the corpses. The hunger was too much; it was not a time for being a snob, for saying “I cannot eat this.”
From the gutters of the monastery, water used to leak down the stone walls of the graveyard. He knew it was from the gutters, the dirtiest water in the monastery, but there was no other way. He started drinking from that water. And slowly, slowly he forgot about the bad smell, he forgot that the water was dirty. He even forgot about the monastery and the world; he had found a new business, a new life. First his business was to find a corpse, in the early morning, for his breakfast.
And in Egypt, since the ancient days of the pharaohs, this has been the convention. You must have heard about the mummies of the queens and kings of Egypt. Their bodies are preserved, covered with gold. And when a king or a queen died, it was not a single death. It was the death of almost fifty persons, because all the people who were taking care of the king – his physician, his masseur, his cook – everybody who was taking care of the king had to be buried with him in the graveyard because he might need them at any time, and much money, gold, precious stones, so that he’s never out of money. If he needs some money, he has enough.
Poor people did the same, in a poor way. Soon this man discovered…and it was not a smaller discovery than that of Archimedes when he jumped, naked out of his bathroom, shouting in the streets of Athens, “Eureka! I have found it!” He was solving a problem; the king had given him a problem and he solved it when he was resting in his bathtub. The joy of finding a new truth was so much, he forgot completely. He reached the court naked.
The prime minister was very angry, but the king understood. He said, “Don’t be angry. I can see that the discovery means so much to him, he has forgotten everything – even right now he’s not aware that he’s standing naked.”
Only then Archimedes saw. He said, “My God! I was in my bathroom!”
This monk’s discovery was even greater. He also shouted, “Eureka! Eureka!” although nobody heard it. Because he discovered that all these corpses were very rich. They all had something – even the poorest had some money, some new clothes, some foodstuff – and he started collecting. He was hoping that, “One day I will get out, and then with all this money and gold and diamonds, I will be the richest monk in the whole country.”
He lived in that graveyard for fifteen years. His only prayer was, “God have mercy on me. I cannot say exactly what I want but you know: one monk needs to die. Unless somebody dies, the graveyard will not be opened – and I cannot say it. Being a Christian, how can I ask you to kill some monk? No. But you know everything, you know my heart, there is no need to say it. You know what is right for me. Do it, and do it quickly, because I am growing very old.”
One day a monk died and the graveyard’s stone was removed. This old man – now he was old, his beard was touching the floor – shouted: “I am alive! Take me out!” They could not believe it, because for fifteen years, nobody had died and they had completely forgotten about him. Fifteen years is a long time, particularly in a monastery. It looks like eternity, boring…boredom makes time elastic. You can go on and on stretching it; it seems unending.
They pulled him out but they were surprised: he was bringing with him almost a great treasure. He had even collected clothes from the dead people; he had taken them off, because dead people are given fresh new robes, so they were perfectly good. He had pulled them out. He had nothing else to do…the whole day exploring, and it was a long, long tunnel. In thousands of years, so many people had died…and he found such antique things.
Nobody could recognize him. He said, “You can’t recognize me?”
They said, “You look like a prophet from the Old Testament. Please tell us more about you – how did you manage to enter our monastery’s graveyard?”
He said, “I was here, I know you all. Fifteen years ago, I died…and I shouted, but you did not hear. Then finally I had to adjust life according to the situation. And I cannot say that I have not been happy. In fact, I have never been happier than I have been for these fifteen years – no anxiety, no fight, nobody to insult you, nobody to humiliate you. And every day, new discoveries….”
What has been given by nature to man is a great faculty to adjust in different situations. It is a flexibility – nature has not made man rigid. But man has misused it: rather than going on a spiritual search for the secrets of life, the miracles of existence, he has become completely adjusted with the mundane, with the meaningless. He has misused his great faculty.
Every faculty has that danger – you can misuse it.
A meditator has to remember: he has been given many powers and he has to be careful, watchful, alert not to misuse those powers.
And what do I mean when I say not to misuse them? I mean if you are going outward, it is misuse. If you are going inward, it is the right use, because the ultimate joy is hidden within you.
Life is not just what it seems. It is tremendously much more, it is incalculably much more. But you will have to turn your face toward yourself.
The day you are alone in your inwardness, you have come home.
And the whole of nature and existence celebrates it, because even a single man’s becoming enlightened is a celebration to the whole universe. A part of the universe has become enlightened – you are not apart, you are an essential part of existence.
But don’t waste your energies in futile things.
I was staying in a home. The man was rich, and he was very eager to show me something. I said, “In the morning. I have just come – forty-eight hours of train journey – you just let me take a bath and go to sleep.”
He said, “First you have to see my collection of postal stamps.”
That day I understood the proverb, “the last straw on the camel’s back.” I am dead tired, and this idiot wants me to see thousands of postal stamps that he has been collecting from all over the world.
I said, “What are you going to do with these? You have wasted money; you have wasted time. You go in search of postal stamps to faraway countries; you go to exhibitions where you can get extraordinary, unique postal stamps – but for what?”
He said, “I never thought about it…for what?”
I said, “Now you go to sleep and think about it, and let me also go to sleep – and I don’t want the answer in the middle of the night! You can give me the answer in the morning.”
Life is simple if you have just a little clarity.
About doing…that is the extrovert side of your being. I am not condemning it. I am simply saying it has its uses but it is not what we are here to get.
Inside you is your divinity – that’s what we are here to get. This whole world is just an experiment, a training school to make you aware of your being.
Your being is the being of the whole existence. Your being and my being are not separate. Your body is separate, my body is separate, your mind is separate, my mind is separate, but your being and my being are one.
To know oneself is to know the whole existence, is to know all.

A boy cockroach was talking to his grandfather. He said, “Grandpop, my teacher says in school that no matter what people do, we're always gonna be here. He says we're going to be the only ones around after the atomic bomb explodes.” The grandfather said, “Well, son. Let me tell you what my grandfather told me. He said, ‘Roaches won't croak when the world's up in smoke and though they step on us now, we'll have the last joke.'”
It is really hilarious that even cockroaches are more intelligent than your so-called powerful politicians, priests. No animal in the world eats his own species except man; only man is a cannibal. However bad the situation may be, no animal eats his own brothers and sisters.
Man seems to be the most bloodthirsty animal. Without man, the earth will be more peaceful, more silent, more joyous, with more flowers, more birds, more songs. The sun will rise the same, the wind will bring fragrances the same….
I don’t think anybody – trees or animals or rivers – is going to miss man, because man has not has contributed anything to the beauty of existence. On the contrary, he has been continuously destructive. All his science is nothing but manufacturing more and more destructive weapons. It seems we are here just to fight, as if in life there is no other blessing than fighting.
The cockroaches are far more intelligent. They have lived as long as you have lived, but not a single world war. There are different species of cockroaches. One species has a very developed sense of aesthetics. It has a very strange way of lovemaking: Each time a male cockroach makes love to a female – and remember, no male cockroach makes love to another male; no boyfriends, all that kind of nonsense has been left to man, and particularly to religious man, to churches, to monasteries, to monks – the male turns the cockroach on her back. And he has a small instrument – it looks like one of the hairs of his mustache; only two hairs are there, but one is not a hair, it is an instrument to dig a hole…just a screwdriver. He makes a new hole. First he looks…because how many other fellows have made love to the woman? Scars are there, but why should he be worried? he always finds fresh ground. What is the need of being worried that you should get married to a virgin girl? Those cockroaches are always on virgin ground.
Every time a cockroach makes love, it makes its own hole and then makes love. And until the hole heals itself, no other male will disturb the poor woman because she still has a wound. Unless that is healed, there is not going to be another lovemaking.
There are hundreds of species of cockroaches but they all have one thing in common: they have lived everywhere where man has lived. In Siberia, they are there; with the Eskimos, they are there. Once, a few explorers had gone to the South Pole and they were puzzled when they found cockroaches there. They were puzzled because there are no human beings. From where have the cockroaches come?
Their captain was an old, experienced man. He laughed. He said, “You are idiots! They have come with you in your shirt – it is full of cockroaches! And they are better explorers than you; they got down before you.”
If man can show only qualities which are natural to animals, to birds, to trees, this earth can become a paradise. But how can you make this earth a paradise with nuclear weapons? Your nuclear weapons, if you knew where paradise was, may have destroyed it, because then for Russia to destroy your paradise would have been a priority. America would have been number two, because with the paradise, all your old saints and all your gods would be finished, and we could have an existence totally free from the domination of some unknown, unseen, unbelievable God.
Man can change his qualities into creative forces. And my whole effort is to make religiousness the foundation of all our creativity.
Up to now, religion has been against life, against joy, against laughter. It has been in favor of a sick humanity – serious, sad. But no religion has supported life-enhancing qualities. They have not been creative, they have not added to man’s intelligence. They have crippled man’s intelligence, they have stopped his growth. They have left the whole humanity retarded – and you can see every day how retarded man is.
Just now I saw a clipping. In America, the churches were going to have conferences and meetings in churches all over America to find out ways and means to prevent the disease AIDS. They had declared their program; experts could explain, and how it can be avoided would be made more available to the public. But the archbishop of America has condemned this kind of thing, because in those programs of preventing AIDS, birth control is mentioned. Rubber condoms are mentioned. And he has taken it very seriously: “In a publication by the church, condoms are mentioned – not only mentioned, but pictures are shown to explain how they have to be used.” He has declared, “No such conferences can be allowed to take place in my churches.”
The church is absolutely against the condom. Strange…the condom is just a piece of rubber. Why should the church be against the condom? And just because of the condom, the whole program against AIDS is in jeopardy.
AIDS can be prevented, but either the condom will have to be used…and the condom freaks out all the religious people of the world. Strange. Just a small piece of rubber, it is not harming anybody.
The condom is not doing any harm to anybody. It has nothing to do with Christianity – it is a question of the whole of humanity’s survival. But those idiots are not concerned about humanity and its survival, their strange interests are a rubber condom. But if you don’t in some way stop the meeting of the sperm and the female egg, it is impossible to prevent AIDS. Even if you stopped that, then too, it is going to be very difficult to get rid of this disease, because you can kiss somebody and you can transfer it.
There are a few scientists who think it is possible that the disease and the virus may be infectious just by talking with a person who has AIDS; just the breathing can bring the virus to you.
In the commune, I was the first man in the whole world who proposed all the preventive methods. And in the commune, we managed perfect control. And I was criticized by Christians, I was criticized by all kinds of journalists, I was criticized and laughed at by the politicians, who said that I was unnecessarily creating fear. And now they are all thinking on the same lines. exactly the same program is being given to all the countries all over the world. And the dishonesty is such that not a single country has said that I was the first to tell the world that at least two-thirds of the world’s population can die if immediate steps are not taken to prevent AIDS.
The steps that we have taken are now being accepted by every government in the world, and nobody is laughing and nobody is criticizing. And nobody is mentioning who the person was who first brought this whole program. We not only brought the program, we practiced it for three years, and the whole commune was perfectly capable of rising above the ordinary masses.
In five years’ life of the commune, not a single child was born – and it was only out of sheer understanding that the earth is overpopulated. We had put condoms in every public bathroom, toilet, so there was no need for anyone to feel embarrassed. Because if you have to go to the chemist, to the druggist, to purchase a condom, you feel a little embarrassed. You might not be able to go openly into the market and purchase condoms and other things. We placed everything in all the public bathrooms for five thousand people. It was out of their understanding to pick them up – or if they were determined to commit suicide, then too, they were free. Nobody was forcing them.
But man seems to be very stupid. Now this archbishop declaring that condoms – even the word condom or the picture – cannot go into a church pamphlet.
And these churches are responsible for all the pornography that exists in the world because they repressed sexuality, they forced people into unnatural ways of living, celibacy. Naturally, people started having unnatural relationships – and AIDS is just the culmination of all your religions and their teachings about celibacy. They have created this disease! The whole credit for AIDS goes to religious monasteries, it was born in religious monasteries.
Now it is absolutely clear that homosexuality is the cause, so there are governments who are making homosexuality a crime. But homosexuality is not the cause – the cause is the teaching of celibacy. No animal is homosexual, but teach any animal celibacy and see; he will start masturbating, he will start practicing homosexuality, he will start making love to chairs, furniture, shoes – anything! You have turned him into a Christian. And soon the poor fellow will be suffering from AIDS. And nobody sees the whole link.
I have heard…. A young man, who looked like a monk, was moving along the pavement in front of a shop, looking again and again into the show window. When every customer had gone and the time to close was near, he entered the shop.
They said, “But we are closing now.”
He said, “It won’t take much time.”
In the show window, there was a rubber cock in which he was interested. He said, “How much is that piece?”
They said, “It is very cheap.” They were in a hurry to close the shop so they said, “What do you want? Should we pack it as a present or should we pack it just ordinarily to take home?”
The man said, “No, there is no need to pack it. Just give it to me; I will just eat it here. What is the need to take it home?”
These insane ideas…however you repress them, they will come up.
One priest, a rabbi, went for his usual circumcision. He was given anesthesia and when he came back to consciousness, he saw that the doctors were a little disturbed, tense, and puzzled.
He asked, “What is the matter?”
They said, “We are sorry, but a small mistake has happened.”
He said, “What mistake?”
They said, “First, we committed a small mistake. But when we tried to correct it, we messed up the whole thing. And before you came back to consciousness and could see what happened, our colleagues suggested that it was better to clean up the whole mess, so finally, instead of only doing a circumcision, we had to do a sex change operation. But you are a priest, and old” – he was seventy – “so it does not matter to you, although we are sorry. It was our mistake.”
“But,” the man said, “this is not right! It means I will never have the joy of erection.”
The doctor said, “Well, you will have, but the cock will be somebody else’s. It is a slight change, not much to be worried about. First, you used to have it on this side, now you will have to have it on that side. You will have it…but we thought you were a priest, and celibate.”
He said, “Everybody thinks that. But the reality is not what is propagated to the masses.”
Nobody can be celibate, it is unnatural. It is just as stupid as somebody coming and saying, “Here is a great saint – he never urinates!” Are you going to believe it, that he never urinates? And even if he manages it, then he’s the man everybody should escape from. He must be disgusting; from every pore of his body, urine must be coming out.
That’s what perversion is. You stop your energies at one point – they find some other way. But the other way is unnatural and is full of dangers. You don’t know where you are going.

Since I have been here with you this time, I have felt a great longing, a great thirst, a great urgency to go into meditation. I love you and I know that this is the only thing you ask of us and this is the only real thank you I could give – to one day know what meditation really is. I see you so alive, sitting here right now with us in this very moment, and I long to become so drunk with you that there is no turning back. I'm drinking you as much as I possibly can. Doubts arise and I feel fear about going back on Wednesday. I'm afraid I will not find you there and will slip back again. Oh, Osho – what does it mean to risk all for a single moment of love?
First, you will not be missing me wherever you are. We miss only our attachments, not our love.
Attachment is to the physical body. Naturally, from far away you cannot touch the physical body, you cannot see the physical body. And you have never known anything more than the physical body. You have never known that which is there but cannot be touched – whether you are here or thousands of miles away.
Only love reveals to you things which are immaterial, experiences which are immortal, spaces which are beyond time and mind.
So the first thing I want to emphasize to you: don’t have any fear. Wherever you are, whenever you are silent, inside yourself, you will find me. And once that experience happens, then the question of separation disappears. Even death cannot separate us, because love is not of the body. And that which is of the body is only attachment, biological lust.
Learn the secrets of love. Go into the depths of the poetry of love, move in the music of love, get centered in the consciousness of love, and there is no fear of losing anything.
And you have asked, “What does it mean to lose everything for a single moment of love?” It means exactly what it says. All things of the world can be put on one side and a single moment of love on another side – still, the side of love will be weightier, will be more valuable.
The things – all the things that you have or you can have – only have prices on them, they can be purchased. Love has no price, it cannot be purchased; all those things can be purchased.
Love is a prayer, not a commodity. You can offer it…and your being is full of it, you have just never looked at the inner springs of your life sources.
All the things of the world are nothing in comparison to one second of love, because that one second is enough to give you ultimate contentment – beyond which you cannot spread your ambitions and desires. Just that experience is enough to fill you with all that is beautiful, with all that is deathless, with all that is part of truth, part of bliss, part of benediction.
Just remember a small criterion. In life, there are two kinds of things – things which have prices on them and things which have no prices. Things that don’t have any price are values.
This whole world is full of commodities. Only your hearts are full of a quality which is invisible, but is the most precious experience of life.
A man who dies without knowing love has never lived. And a man who knows love needs no other lives anymore – he has passed the examination of life.

Do you have something to say about Gandhi's fourth monkey?
In China, based on almost twenty-five centuries of the teachings of Lao Tzu, some sculptor made a statue of four monkeys. Lao Tzu used to say, “Don’t see anything wrong, because even by seeing it, you become in some subtle way a participant. And moreover, just by seeing it, it leaves an impression in you which may become a seed and some day it may explode into action. It is better not to see it.”
It is not my philosophy, remember. My philosophy is to see it as accurately as possible from all sides, so you know it perfectly well and there can be no misunderstanding, and you are free of it – not because you have not seen it, not because you are ignorant about it, but because you have understood it, that it is useless. So this is not my philosophy. I’m simply explaining the four statues of monkeys to you.
One monkey is keeping his hands over his eyes; that is indicative of not seeing that which is not worth seeing. It is better to keep your eyes closed.
The second statue is: Don’t hear that which is not worth hearing. So the second statue is putting its hands on both ears.
And the third statue is putting its hands on the mouth: Don’t speak anything that is not absolutely necessary. Don’t speak anything that is going to hurt somebody. It is better to be silent than to be unnecessarily in quarrels and fights and violence, because most of your violence begins with your words, with your mouth.
And the fourth was…all the monkeys are naked, as they have to be. The fourth was also naked. He was keeping his hands on his cock, hiding it. The message was that sex is a great energy, and you should not spoil it. It has to be transformed, it has to change from going downward to going toward the highest center in your mind, the third eye. It has to move toward the third eye from the lowest center, in your genital organs.
When sexual energy starts moving upward, you also start moving upward with it. And the moment sexual energy reaches the third eye between your two eyes, you will be capable of seeing more clearly – without any distortion, without any possibility of any mistake – your path, your life, your achievements, your possibilities, your potentiality. Everything for the first time will be lighted up; darkness disappears.
It was a beautiful statue – transformation of sex into spirituality. The same statues are made in Japan, more artistically, more beautifully.
One friend of Mahatma Gandhi sent him these statues, thinking that he would appreciate it. And he did appreciate it, but when the statues arrived, there were four monkeys and when the statues were cleaned and put on Mahatma Gandhi’s table, there were only three monkeys. The fourth monkey had disappeared.
You are asking me about the fourth monkey. You will find him somewhere as a sannyasin, because I don’t see any other place to escape to.
But it shows the level of understanding of Mahatma Gandhi. He was sex-repressive. He could not understand Lao Tzu. He was worried that people would see this naked monkey. So it is better from the very beginning if people don’t know anything about it. In India, those statues don’t exist; It is better to cut the fourth monkey separate. Now those remaining three monkeys Gandhi can manage: “Don’t see what is not worth seeing. Don’t speak what is not worth speaking. Don’t hear what is not worth hearing.”
But all these are nothing in comparison to the fourth. These three may make you a little more civilized, sophisticated, but these three will not transform you for the simple reason that you are not trying to understand. You are trying to avoid, not to look at. It is as if you have a cancer but you don’t want to look at it, so you don’t go to the doctor.
I used to know a man whose wife came to me, saying, “You have to come to my house, because my husband will not listen to anybody except you. We have tried our best. He has been sick for almost two weeks and we think something is seriously wrong. He’s becoming weaker and weaker, but he is not ready to go to a doctor. And he is not ready even to say why he’s not willing to go the doctor.”
I went. I told everybody to go out of the room and I closed the door. I asked the man, “What is the matter? Why are you avoiding the doctor? If there is any problem, just tell me.”
He said, “I can tell you. The problem is not with the doctor, the problem is with me – I am worried that perhaps I have cancer. My father died of cancer, my grandfather died. My wife, my first wife died of cancer, and I have seen so many cancer deaths in the house that it has become impossible to forget it. So I feel I have cancer.”
I said, “Do you think not being examined is going to help you in any way?”
He said, “No.”
I said, “But there is a possibility – if the doctor says you don’t have any cancer, you will be immediately cured. Secondly, if he finds there is something else, then medicines can take care of it. But fifty percent, the chances are that you may not have the cancer. You are missing a fifty percent chance. It is up to you, it is your life. I will not disturb you. Should I go or wait for your answer?”
He said, “Wait.”
After a moment he said, “It seems right. There is a fifty percent chance. It is only guesswork.”
The doctor was brought, and he had the cancer. He told me, “Look!”
I said, “No harm. To know the enemy is always better than not to know, because knowing the enemy you can fight it better. Now we know it is cancer, we can fight it. There is no problem, you are not going to die.”
There are people all over the world who are afraid – if a medical check-up turns up some calamity, a psychological check-up turns up some calamity…they go on living in fear. And out of their fear, they go on creating a thousand and one more fears. They may not have the cancer, they may not be really sick but their minds will create sickness – and their minds are capable of creating the cancer too.
One thing has to be remembered: you are, in your essential being, beyond all diseases, all old age, all deaths. In your non-essential parts – the body, the mind, the brain – you are vulnerable to all kinds of diseases, to all kinds of accidents. But they are not happening to you. They are happening almost as if in a dream, to somebody else.
The whole work of the mystery school is to somehow introduce you to yourself.
That introduction is the introduction to existence itself.
For centuries, man has lived in ignorance, in darkness. And in that darkness and ignorance he has been spinning and weaving dreams, nightmares, and he is suffering them. His nightmare may be just a dream, but his suffering is true.
To me, the definition of a religious man is one who has come out of dreams, one who has come out of sleep, one who is awake, one whose eyes are open. And he lives with this awareness. His every act is full of his awareness, is luminous with his awareness. Then nothing can go wrong.
I don’t teach you any morality. I don’t say “this is good, this is wrong, this is moral, this is immoral” – that is all childish.
I teach you a single criterion: awareness. If in awareness you do something, it has to be right, because in awareness you cannot do anything wrong. And without awareness, you may be doing something very good, appreciated by everybody, but still I say it is wrong because you are not aware. You must be doing it for wrong reasons.
I am reminded of a small story. There is a big fair, somewhere in China. A man falls into a well, because in those days in China, wells were not made with a protective wall around them. So it was an ordinary, everyday accident – people falling into wells.
This man was shouting, hanging onto a root of a tree inside the well but the fair was so noisy that nobody heard him. By chance, a Buddhist monk was passing by the side of the well, and he heard. Perhaps because he was accustomed to meditation and silence…that may have been the reason he heard the man shouting from the well. He asked, “What is the matter? What is the trouble, why can’t you be silent?”
The man said, “You seem to be strange. I am dying and you are saying ‘Why can’t you be silent?’”
The Buddhist monk said, “At the time of death, one has to be silent. Don’t miss a single moment. Just close your eyes and be silent. If you die in this tense and anguished state, you will be born into a very ugly species. If you want to go higher, this is the moment – don’t miss!”
The man said, “I don’t want to go anywhere, I simply want to come out of the well.”
The Buddhist monk said, “I know everything about higher consciousness. I can take you to the ultimate.”
“But,” he said, “who wants to go to the ultimate! Just take me out of the well!”
The Buddhist monk said, “That I cannot do, because it is forbidden to us for the simple reason that if I take you out and tomorrow you rape a woman, or a murder a man, then I will also be responsible for your act, because without me you would not have been able to do it; we are partners. Just excuse me.” And he went away!
He said, “I don’t want to become a partner to any kind of action. I am trying somehow to finish my own load, and I don’t want to take on anybody else’s load.”
The man said, “Strange kind of people…I am dying, and he teaches me to be silent and die. He does not try to bring a rope and get me out.”
Just at that moment, a Lao Tzu monk, a Taoist monk came by. He also heard. He looked in and he said, “Listen man – my master used to say that you should act in awareness, walk in awareness. Now you see? – you have not been aware.”
The man said, “I will learn awareness but first – this time – take me out!”
The Taoist monk said, “That is beyond me, because nobody can save anybody else. That’s what my master has said.”
The man shouted, “It is said in a different context! It is not said in the context of a man dying in the well.”
The man said, “If you talk about context and reference, then I will have to bring the scriptures and show you.”
The man said, “I don’t want to see any scriptures. And I am ready to take my words back – just bring a rope!”
He said, “No, neither can anybody save you nor can anybody destroy you. It is always you, deep down, who are responsible for every action. So take the responsibility, be brave. And…see you next life!”
He said, “My God! All these religious people….”
And then came a Christian missionary with a bucket, with a rope…and he immediately threw down the bucket with the rope and told the man, “Sit in the bucket – it’s a big bucket – and I will pull you out. Don’t be worried.”
He came out and he said, “You seem to be the only religious person in this whole crowd. What religion do you follow?”
The man said, “I am a Christian.”
The man who had been rescued from the well was very much impressed. He said, “This is real religion! Just one question: why were you carrying a bucket and a rope?”
The Christian missionary said, “We have to be ready for any emergency. And because so many people fall into wells, all Christian missionaries carry a bucket and rope and we always look into every well – ‘Has somebody fallen or not?’ – because our master Jesus Christ has said: ‘Those who help the poor, the sick, the miserable, will be received with great honor in the house of God, in the kingdom of God.’ Up to now, I have saved thirteen men from wells…but my number is not much. There are many other missionaries who have gone beyond sixty, seventy. It is very difficult to find a person in a well.”
The man said, “This is a strange philosophy – even stranger than those two…the Buddhist, the Taoist. You are using us as stepping stones; you want us to be in the wells.”
He said, “Of course, because unless there are poor, how can we help? Unless there are sick, how can we serve? Unless there are miserable people, we are out of employment.”
The man said, “Anyway, I thank you that you pulled me out. I cannot agree with your philosophy, but whatever your philosophy, at least my life is saved.”
The missionary said, “This is not enough, this is not the right gratitude. The right gratitude will be to fall as many times into wells as you can. And if you can, inform me in advance; that will be really wonderful.”
We are living in an insane world, and you have to find some sanity within yourself. You cannot find it in the world, you can find it only within yourself.
That sanity will be your ladder toward higher states of consciousness, bliss and ecstasies.

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