“ONLY COMPASSION IS THERAPEUTIC” YOU SAID. COULD YOU COMMENT ON THE WORD ‘COMPASSION’, COMPASSION FOR ONESELF AND COMPASSION FOR THE OTHER?
YES, only compassion is therapeutic — because all that is ill in man is because of lack of love. All that is wrong with man is somewhere associated with love. He has not been able to love, or he has not been able to receive love. He has not been able to share his being. That’s the misery. That creates all sorts of complexes inside. Those wounds inside can surface in many ways: they can become physical illness, they can become mental illness — but deep down man suffers from lack of love. Just as food is needed for the body, love is needed for the soul. The body cannot survive without food, and the soul cannot survive without love. In fact, without love the soul is never born — there is no question of its survival. You simply think that you have a soul; you believe that you have a soul because of your fear of death. But you have not known unless you have loved. Only in love does one come to feel that one is more than the body, more than the mind. That’s why I say compassion is therapeutic. What is compassion?
Compassion is the purest form of love. Sex is the lowest form of love, compassion the highest form of love. In sex the contact is basically physical; in compassion the contact is basically spiritual. In love, compassion and sex are both mixed, the physical and the spiritual are both mixed. Love is midway between sex and compassion.
You can call compassion prayer also. You can call compassion meditation also. The highest form of energy is compassion. The word ‘compassion’ is beautiful: half of it is ‘passion’ — somehow passion has become so refined that it is no more like passion. It has become compassion.
In sex, you use the other, you reduce the other to a means, you reduce the other to a thing. That’s why in a sexual relationship you feel guilty. That guilt has nothing to do with religious teachings; that guilt is deeper than religious teachings. In a sexual relationship as such you feel guilty. You feel guilty because you are reducing a human being to a thing, to a commodity to be used and thrown away. That’s why in sex you also feel a sort of bondage — you are also being reduced to a thing. And when you are a thing your freedom disappears, because your freedom exists only when you are a person. The more you are a person, the more free; the more you are a thing, the less free. The furniture in your room is not free. If you leave the room locked and you come after many years, the furniture will be in the same place, in the same way; it will not arrange itself in a new way. It has no freedom. But if you leave a man in the room, you will not find him the same — not even the next day — not even the next moment. You cannot find the same man again.
Says old Heraclitus: YOU CANNOT STEP IN THE SAME RIVER TWICE. You cannot come across the same man again. It is impossible to meet the same man twice — because man is a river, continuously flowing. You never know what is going to happen. The future remains open. For a thing, future is closed. A rock will remain a rock, will remain a rock. It has no potentiality for growth. It cannot change, it cannot evolve. A man never remains the same. May fall back, may go ahead; may go into hell or into heaven — but never remains the same. Goes on moving, this way or that.
When you have a sexual relationship with somebody, you have reduced that somebody to a thing. And in reducing him you have reduced yourself also to a thing, because it is a mutual compromise that ‘I allow you to reduce me to a thing, you allow me to reduce you to a thing. I allow you to use me, you allow me to use you. We use each other. We both have become things.’ That’s why… watch two lovers: when they have not yet settled. the romance is still alive, the honeymoon has not ended and you will see two persons throbbing with life, ready to explode — ready to explode the unknown. And then watch a married couple, the husband and the wife, and you will see two dead things, two graveyards, side by side — helping each other to remain dead, forcing each other to remain dead. That is the constant conflict of the marriage. Nobody wants to be reduced to a thing!
Sex is the lowest form of that energy ‘X’. If you are religious, call it ‘God’; if you are scientific, call it ‘X’. This energy, X, can become love. When it becomes love, then you start respecting the other person. Yes. sometimes you use the other person, but you feel thankful for it. You never say thank-you to a thing. When you are in love with a woman and you make love to her, you say thank-you. When you make love to your wife, have you ever said thank-you? No, you take it for granted. Has your wife said thank-you to you ever? Maybe, many years before, you can remember some time when you were just undecided, were just trying, courting, seducing each other — maybe. But once you were settled, has she said thank-you to you for anything? You have been doing so many things for her, she has been doing so many things for you, you are both living for each other — but gratitude has disappeared.
In love, there is gratitude, there is a deep gratefulness. You know that the other is not a thing. You know that the other has a grandeur, a personality, a soul, an individuality. In love you give total freedom to the other. Of course, you give and you take; it is a give-and-take relationship — but with respect. In sex, it is a give-and-take relationship with no respect. In compassion, you simply give.
There is no idea anywhere in your mind to get anything back — you simply share. Not that nothing comes! millionfold it is returned, but that is just by the way, just a natural consequence. There is no hankering for it. In love, if you give something, deep down you go on expecting that it should be returned. If it is not returned, you feel complaining. You may not say so, but in a thousand and one ways it can be inferred that you are grumbling, that you are feeling that you have been cheated. Love seems to be a subtle bargain.
In compassion, you simply give. In love, you are thankful because the other has given something to you. In compassion, you are thankful because the other has taken something from you; you are thankful because the other has not rejected you. You had come with energy to give, you had come with many flowers to share, and the other allowed you, the other was receptive. You are thankful because the other was receptive.
Compassion is the highest form of love. Much comes back — millionfold, I say — but that is not the point, you don’t hanker for it. If it is not coming there is no complaint about it. If it is coming you are simply surprised! If it is coming, it is unbelievable. If it is not coming there is no problem — you had never given your heart to somebody for any bargain. You simply shower because you have. You have so much that if you don’t shower you will become burdened. Just like a cloud full of rainwater has to shower. And next time when a cloud is showering watch silently, and you will always hear, when the cloud has showered and the earth has absorbed, you will always hear the cloud saying to the earth “Thank-you.” The earth helped the cloud to unburden. When a flower has bloomed, it has to share its fragrance to the winds. It is natural! It is not a bargain, it is not a business — it is simply natural! The flower is full of fragrance — what to do? If the flower keeps the fragrance to itself then the flower will feel very, very tense, in deep anguish.
The greatest anguish in life is when you cannot express, when you cannot communicate, when you cannot share. The poorest man is he who has nothing to share, or who has something to share but has lost the capacity, the art, of how to share it — then a man is poor.
The sexual man is very poor. The loving man is richer comparatively. The man of compassion is the richest — he is at the top of the world. He has no confinement, no limitation. He simply gives and goes on his way. He does not even wait for you to say a thank-you. With tremendous love he shares his energy. This is what I call therapeutic.
Buddha used to say to his disciples, “After each meditation, be compassionate — immediately — because when you meditate, love grows, the heart becomes full. After each meditation, feel compassion for the whole world so that you share your love and you release the energy into the atmosphere and that energy can be used by others.”
I would also like to say that to you: After each meditation, when you are celebrating, have compassion. Just feel that your energy should go and help people in whatsoever ways they need it. Just release it! You will be unburdened, you will feel very relaxed, you will feel very calm and quiet, and the vibrations that you have released will help many. End your meditations always with compassion. And compassion is unconditional. You cannot have compassion only for those who are friendly towards you, only for those who are related to you…Compassion is all-inclusive — intrinsically all-inclusive. So if you cannot feel compassion for your neighbor~ then forget all about meditation — because it has nothing to do with somebody in particular. It has something to do with your inner state. Be compassion! unconditionally, undirected, unaddressed. Then you become a healing force into this world of misery.
Jesus says: “Love thy neighbor as thyself” — again and again. And he also says: “Love thy enemy as thyself.” And if you analyze both the sentences together, you will come to find that the neighbor and the enemy are almost always the same person. “Love thy neighbor as thyself” and “Love thy enemy as thyself.” What does he mean?
He simply means: don’t have any barriers for your compassion, for your love.
As you love yourself, love the whole existence — because in the ultimate analysis the whole existence is yourself. It is you — reflected in many mirrors. It is you — it is not separate from you. Your neighbor is just a form of you; your enemy is also a form of you. Whatsoever you come across, you come across yourself.
You may not recognize because you are not very alert; you may not be able to see yourself in the other, but then something is wrong with your vision, something is wrong with your eyes.
This is an excerpt from the transcript of a public discourse by Osho in Buddha Hall, Shree Rajneesh Ashram, Pune.
A Sudden Clash of Thunder
Chapter title: Choicelessness is Bliss
18 August 1976 am in Buddha Hall
Osho has spoken on ‘sex, love, compassion, gratitude, prayer’ in many of His discourses. More on the subject can be referred to in the following books/discourses:
- A Bird on the Wing
- The Discipline of Transcendence, Vol 3
- Come Follow To You, Vol 2
- Bodhidharma: The Greatest Zen Master
- Dang Dang Doko Dang
- The Divine Melody
- The Fish in the Sea is Not Thirsty
- Zarathustra: A God That Can Dance
- The Osho Upanishad
- Zen: The Path of Paradox, Vol 2
- The Tantra Vision, Vol 1, 2
- Vigyan Bhairav Tantra, Vol 1
- The Great Pilgrimage: From Here to Here