The Dhammapada Vol 11 09

Ninth Discourse from the series of 10 discourses - The Dhammapada Vol 11 by Osho.
You can listen, download or read all of these discourses on oshoworld.com.

A master gives up mischief.
He is serene.
He leaves everything behind him.

He does not take offense
and he does not give it.
He never returns evil for evil.

Alas for the man
who raises his hand against another,
and even more for him
who returns the blow.

Resist the pleasures of life
and the desire to hurt –
till sorrows vanish.

Never offend
by what you think or say or do.

Honor the man who is awake
and shows you the way.
Honor the fire of his sacrifice.

Matted hair or family or caste
do not make a master
but the truth and goodness
with which he is blessed.

Your hair is tangled
and you sit on a deerskin.
What folly!
When inside you are ragged with lust.

The master’s clothes are in tatters.
His veins stand out,
he is wasting away.
Alone in the forest
he sits and meditates.
Hank was riding the range, a-singing and a-humming. Suddenly his horse reared and stopped. In front of them was a huge snake. Hank drew his gun and was about to fire when the snake cried, “Don’t shoot! If you spare my life I have the power to grant you any three wishes you make!”
“Okay,” said Hank, figuring he had nothing to lose. “My first wish is a handsome face like Paul Newman. Second I want a muscular body like Muhammad Ali. And my last wish is to be equipped like my horse here!”
“Granted!” said the snake. “When you wake up tomorrow you will have all these things.”
Next morning Hank awoke and rushed to the mirror. Sure enough, he had a face like Paul Newman and to his delight he saw a pair of massive shoulders and arms like Muhammad Ali. Then glancing down in great excitement he let out a blood-curdling howl, “My God, I clean forgot!” he babbled. “Yesterday I was riding Nellie!”

Man lives almost in a kind of deep sleep. He is not aware who he is, what he is doing, what he is thinking, where he is going, why he is going. His whole life is the life of a somnambulist, a sleepwalker. He is utterly unconscious. Out of this unconsciousness arise a thousand and one mischiefs; not that he knowingly wants to do them, he cannot avoid them. It is not a question of his decision to stop being mischievous; it is a question of his awareness. If he is aware, mischief disappears as darkness disappears when you bring light in. If he is not aware he may think he is doing something good, he may believe with his whole heart that he is doing something good, but he will be doing something mischievous. The total outcome of his life is going to be more chaos in the world.
You can watch the do-gooders: they all try to help, they all try to serve; they make it a point that their whole life should be one of service. So many public servants in the world, so many missionaries, so many social reformers, so many great revolutionaries, and look at the shape the world is in. Can it be more of a mess? This is the outcome of all your great efforts, of all your great saints. The tree is known by the fruit, and all your religions and all your saints and holy men can only be known by the world that they have helped to create. It is the ugliest world possible.
Not that existence is responsible; existence has made a beautiful world. This world is immensely beautiful: the trees, the flowers, the rivers, the mountains, the stars. But the world that man has made, the social structures that man has created are all ugly, violent, utterly mischievous. But everything bad can be done in the name of good.
Adolf Hitler was not consciously trying to do evil, remember. He was not knowingly destructive; he thought he was trying to help humanity. He thought he was trying to bring a better human being into the world – the superman. He believed deeply in Friedrich Nietzsche’s philosophy of the superman and he also believed that the Germans were the really superhuman beings, that they were entitled to rule the world.
It was not that he was deceiving anybody; he was utterly convinced of the fact. It was not a fiction for him, it was a fact that the German race is the real Aryan race, that the Nordics are the purest people in the world. He could influence millions of very intelligent people for the simple reason that he was convinced of what he was saying and doing. His conviction was hypnotizing. He was not a man of great intelligence, he was utterly mediocre, but one thing was there: he was convinced that only through him could the world be made a better place to live. By murdering millions of Jews, he did not think that he was doing any violence; he thought he was serving humanity by getting rid of the enemies of humanity. It was not a question of his fooling anybody; he was so unconscious that he himself was fooled by his own convictions.
Adolf Hitler did great mischief, as all politicians do. And they always do it behind beautiful slogans: socialism, democracy, freedom, equality and whatnot. They are all trying to improve upon the world, but the total result is more and more confusion and chaos. The world would be a far better place if we could be alert enough not to listen to these lunatics. But we are also asleep. What they say appeals to us; it has a great magnetic quality in it.
In fact, a Buddha is bound to be misunderstood, not Adolf Hitler; a Jesus is bound to be misunderstood, but not Joseph Stalin. Joseph Stalin, Adolf Hitler, Benito Mussolini speak the language that you understand. They are just people like you; they live in the same kind of sleep. Hence there is a communication between you and them which is missing between you and a Buddha, between you and a Lao Tzu.
Buddha stands on Everest and you live in the dark valleys far below. You don’t look up, you have forgotten how to look up. You crawl in the mud. Those who are crawling by your side can be understood more easily by you. They speak your language, they speak your idiom; they are perfectly in tune with you. They are not different people. But a Buddha, a Krishna, a Mohammed, these are different people. They speak a different language, from a different height, from a different vision, although they use the same words. But they give different meanings to your words, and you are going to miss those meanings.
Meditate over this:

“Why won’t you, honey?”
“I’m too tired.”
“Ah, come on…”
“Leave me alone!”
“I won’t be able to sleep!”
“Well, I can’t sleep now.”
“Why – in the middle of the night?”
“Because I’m hot.”
“You get hot at the damnedest times!”
“You don’t love me!”
“Yes, I do…”
“If you loved me you would do it.”
“Well, damn it – alright.”
“What’s the matter?”
“I can’t find it.”
“That feels better.”
“It should be, it’s all the way up.”
“That’s enough; thanks, dear.”
“Next time, open the damned window yourself!”

And all the time, what were you thinking?
Buddha says:
A master gives up mischief.
A master gives up mind. Mind is mischief; there is no other mischief. Mind is the source of all mischief. A master is a master only because he has ceased to be dominated by the mind. A master is a master of himself; he is no longer unconscious. Whatsoever he does, he does it knowingly. Whatsoever he is, he is perfectly aware about it. His life is not accidental. His every act is rooted in consciousness, it is intentional.
We live in the mind. The mind can even become a saint, can pretend to be holy, but it will not be. It is impossible; it is not in the very nature of the mind to be holy. Just look at the history of religions – they are full of bloodshed. In fact, more crimes have been committed in the name of religions than in the name of anything else. More people have been killed, butchered in the name of religion, God, truth, Christianity, Islam, than in the name of political ideologies. Religion tops the list. Religion has been far more mischievous; it has even defeated the politicians. It could defeat them for the simple reason that the politician cannot hide himself for very long; sooner or later he is exposed. But the religious person can hide himself for centuries and you will never know.
The people who crucified Jesus have not even yet understood that they committed a sin. I have not come across a single Jew who accepts it consciously that it was a crime to crucify Jesus. And it is not that there are not good Jews, not that there are not saintly Jews, not that there are not learned rabbis. There are, they are very pious people. Even a man like Martin Buber could not gather the courage to say, “We have committed a crime in the past.” No, that seems impossible. The crime was on Jesus’ part because he tried to declare himself the Son of God. That is the crime: that he tried to project his image as the Messiah, as the messenger of God. That was the crime and he was rightly punished, Jews are absolutely convinced of that.
Two thousand years have passed; I have not come across a single book written by a Jew who can accept “We committed a mistake.” It seems impossible. They can’t see it because the crime was committed in the name of religion.
Thousands of Christians have been killed by Mohammedans, and vice versa. And these wars have been called jihads – holy wars. Now, no war is ever holy, no war is a jihad; all wars are unholy. What excuse you find, that is another matter; that is just an excuse to fight. You want to fight, you want to kill and destroy. You find good excuses, beautiful excuses – holy wars, and millions of people are destroyed.
In these holy wars millions of women were raped; now, that rape is holy. If murder is holy, why not rape? That too is holy since it is done in the name of religion. Everything that is done in the name of religion is good.
Your saints, who look so holy and pious, are the causes of all this nonsense, of all this nuisance in the world. When are we going to get rid of all this stupidity? Is man not yet mature enough? Has not the time come that we should get rid of all this foolishness that has remained overwhelmingly powerful down the ages? Is not the time ripe to disconnect ourselves from the past?
But the only way to disconnect yourself from the past is to disconnect yourself from your mind because your mind is the past. Mind means the known, the past. Mind is history, mind is time. Mind is Christian, Hindu, Mohammedan. Mind is Indian, German, Chinese. And unless you get out of the hold of the mind, whatsoever you do is going to be mischievous. It may or may not appear mischievous to you – that is another matter – but it is going to be mischievous. Out of the mind nothing good can ever happen.
Good is a by-product of meditation, and bad, a by-product of mind.

A man said to Mulla Nasruddin, “How is your great friend, the lawyer?”
Mulla said, “I’m afraid he is lying at death’s door.”
“These lawyers! At death’s door and still lying?”

That’s the state of the mind: it goes on lying even at death’s door. In fact, as death comes closer to you, you start lying more and more, you start deceiving yourself with many more fictions, you start creating myths around you of God, of heaven, of hell. You start creating dreams and you start living in dreams because your whole life is shattered. You have wasted the opportunity. You have not been creative, you have been destructive.
And remember, nobody can be neutral. You either create something in life or you destroy; either you live in the mind or you live beyond the mind. If you live beyond the mind you become creative. To be in meditation is to be creative. Then whatsoever you do is beautiful; it brings more glory, more blessings to the world. Otherwise whatsoever you do is going to make the world uglier.

The table and the chair were profoundly in love. They decided to get married and in due course they had a new arrival.
“What shall we christen him?” asked the chair.
“Chable,” was the other’s logical reply.

Of course the child of a table and a chair should be called a chable. And that’s what people are doing: they go on producing chables. That seems to be their only productivity: all that they can do is produce more children.

A woman was telling me, “I hate my husband! From my very guts,” she was saying, “I hate my husband! I am afraid some day I may kill him, may poison him.”
I said, “If you hate him so much, then how come you have eighteen children?”
She said, “I was trying to create such a crowd that he would get lost in it.”

People hate and still they go on reproducing because their productivity knows no other way.

Rena went into the city clerk’s office to report the birth of her sixth child.
“But, miss, this is your sixth child by the same father,” said the clerk. “Why don’t you marry him?”
“Are you jivin’?” replied Rena. “I don’t even like the sonofabitch!”

But people have to do something; they can’t just sit. They have to find something to remain occupied with. That’s how all the mischief arises in the world.
Buddha says: A master gives up mischief.
He is serene.
Serenity is the flavor of meditation, serenity is the fragrance of meditation. He is so serene, so silent that he can be absolutely empty, with no desire to do anything. When all desire to remain occupied disappears, only then can something good happen through you. Then godliness can happen through you – and good only happens through you when godliness happens through you. Good is nothing but godliness flowing through you.
He is serene.
He leaves everything behind him.
He leaves the past, he leaves his mind, he leaves his memories, he leaves his tradition. He is not a conformist, he cannot be a conformist. No master has ever been a conformist; that would be a contradiction in terms. He is always a rebel. He is pure rebellion. He dies every moment to the past; he never collects the past. Hence he remains always fresh, as fresh as the dewdrops in the early morning sun, as fresh as the lotus leaf, as fresh as the petals of a rose. He is always fresh, he is always young; he never grows old. He grows up, but he never grows old. The body of course grows old, but his consciousness remains absolutely fresh; it never gathers any dust or rust. He is so serene that he can sit alone for eternity with nothing to do, and still he will be absolutely blissful. He will enjoy his serenity.
This serenity cannot be cultivated from the outside; this serenity comes only when you have become a watcher of the mind, when you have become a witness of the mind and through witnessing you have transcended the mind. Then suddenly, out of nowhere, a serenity explodes from all directions. It showers on you like flowers and it goes on showering. Your life then is a life of virtue. It is not a question of cultivating it, it is not a question of creating it, it is a consequence of meditation.
This point should be remembered again and again; never forget it because it has been forgotten millions of times. Again and again a buddha comes to remind you but you go on forgetting it, for the simple reason that a cultivated serenity is cheap. You can look serene, you can make a serene face; you can act it, you can be a good actor, you can be very efficient, but that will be nothing but hypocrisy. Deep down you will be boiling; deep down inside you there will be hell. From the outside you have perfumed yourself and inside you are stinking. Inside you are clinging to all your misery, to your past, to all that is dead, to all that is rotten, to all that should be burned; you are clinging to it. And those who cling to dead corpses slowly, slowly become dead themselves; those who live with corpses become corpses themselves. On the surface you may smile, you may laugh; deep down there are only tears – tears of pain.
But this strange fact about man has to be understood: that he clings to the past. Even if the past is ugly he clings to the past, even though he has only suffered. Why does he cling to the past? – because the past gives him a definition, the past gives him an identity, the past gives him an idea of who he is.

After six weeks away on business the married executive entered a West Side brothel in Chicago. He walked up to the madam, handed her a hundred dollar bill and said, “I want the worst screw in the house!”
“But sir,” answered the madam, “one hundred dollars will buy you our best.”
“No,” demanded the businessman, “I want the worst available.”
“I can’t let you do this,” the woman pleaded. “You’re entitled to the top of the line.”
“Listen, lady,” said the man, “I’m not horny, just homesick!”

Watch your mind, how you cling to the past. There is nothing to cling to – just dry bones, skeletons, but you are holding onto them as if they are your very life. And because you are holding them, your hands are not empty to hold anything else; because you are looking toward the past you cannot see the present and you cannot enjoy the beauty of it, the joy of it. You cannot enter into the present, and the present is the door to godliness. The past is no more.
God is never past, God is always present. God is never future either, God is always present. You cannot say “God was,” you cannot say “God will be,” you can only say “God is.” In fact to say “God is” is a repetition because God means isness; isness and God are synonymous.
Buddha says: He leaves everything behind him. The master cannot be a Hindu, cannot be a Buddhist, cannot be a Christian. The master is simply a master; these names are of the slaves. Somebody is a slave in the name of Christianity and somebody is a slave in the name of Hinduism. These are all slaves; they don’t know what freedom is. They are clinging to such utter nonsense, but they are clinging so hard that they can’t see anything else. Their eyes are full of the dust of the past. They are blind because of the past; they are blind for no other reason.
You are not missing God because you are sinners; you are missing God because you are past-oriented. And God is available only now–here. God knows only one time, now, and only one place, here. And you are never now and you are never here; you are always somewhere else. Then and there are significant words for you; now and here are almost meaningless to you.
The master lives now and lives here. He leaves everything behind him. He goes on destroying the bridges he has crossed.
He does not take offense
and he does not give it.
He never returns evil for evil.
Obviously, if somebody insults him he does not take it. You cannot insult a master, that is impossible. How can you insult a man who does not take it? To insult a man two things are needed: somebody to insult him and his readiness to take it.

Buddha was once insulted by a few people who abused him badly. He listened silently and then he said, “Have you anything more to say? – because I have to reach the other village in time. People must be waiting there. If you still have something else to say, when I come back I will be coming by the same route. I will inform you and I will keep a special time for you, so you can come and say whatsoever you like.”
Those people were very puzzled. They said, “We are not saying something, we are insulting you.”
Buddha laughed. He said, “For that you have come a little late. You should have come at least ten years ago. Now I am not so foolish. You can insult, that is your freedom, but whether to take it or not is my freedom. I am not taking it.”
And he said to them, “In the other village which I just passed before yours, people came with sweets to offer me. I thanked them. I said, ‘I don’t need sweets and I don’t eat sweets.’ What do you think they must have done with the sweets?”
Somebody from the crowd said, “They must have taken them back home.”
Buddha said, “Now what will you do? You will have to take your insults back home. I don’t take your insults, so there is no other way, you have to take them back.”

When you feel insulted you have participated with the person. But you are not conscious, so anybody can push your buttons. You function like a machine: push the button and you are on; push the button and you are off. Anybody can enrage you, anybody can make you smile and laugh, anybody can make you cry and weep. Anybody, any stupid fellow can do that. One just needs to know where the buttons are, and they are almost always in the same places. It is very rare to find a person whose buttons are in different places.

A Polack was driving his Volkswagen, when suddenly it stopped for some reason. He went to look – maybe there was some trouble in the engine – but he could not find the engine. So he thought, “My God, my engine has been stolen!”
Just then another Polack stopped by his side. He said, “Is there some trouble?”
The first man said, “Yes, it seems my engine has been stolen.”
The man said, “Don’t be worried. This morning I was looking at the back of my car – there is a spare engine. You can take it!”

Now in a Volkswagen the engine is not in the usual place; it is at the back, not in the front. But God has not yet learned anything from the Volkswagen – he still makes the same engine with the same buttons, maybe a little bit different here and there, just a little change. Anybody can find buttons, just a little groping and you can find anybody else’s button. If you know your buttons you know everybody else’s buttons.
You will be in a difficulty only with a buddha, because you can go on pushing his buttons and nothing will happen – because he is no longer identified with his mechanism. He will watch you pushing his buttons and he will enjoy the exercise that you are giving him, but that’s all.
He does not take offense and he does not give it. He never returns evil for evil. He understands humanity so deeply. By understanding himself he has understood the miserable state of all human beings. He feels sorry for people; he is compassionate. He does not return evil for evil for the simple reason that he does not feel offended in the first place. Secondly, he feels sorry for you; he does not feel antagonistic toward you.
Once it happened in Baroda…

I was talking to a big crowd. Somebody sitting just in the front row became so disturbed by what I was saying that he went out of control, he lost his senses. He threw one of his shoes at me. At that moment I remembered that I used to play volleyball when I was a student, so I caught hold of his shoe in the middle and asked him for the other one. He was at a loss.
I said, “Throw the other one too! What am I going to do with one? If you want to present something…” He waited. I said, “Why are you waiting? Throw the other one too, because this way neither will I be able to use the shoe nor will you be able to use it. And I am not going to return it because evil should not be returned for evil. So you please give the other one too.”
He was shocked because he could not believe it. First, what he had done he could not believe – he was a very good man, a scholar, a well-known Sanskrit scholar, a pundit. He was not expected to behave like that, but it had happened. People are so unconscious. If I had acted the way he was unconsciously expecting, then everything would have been okay. But I asked for the other shoe, and that shocked him very much. He was dazed.
I told somebody who was sitting by his side, “Pull off his other shoe. I am not letting him off, I want both shoes. In fact, I was thinking of purchasing some shoes, and this man seems to be so generous.” And the shoe was really new.
The man came in the night, fell at my feet, and asked to be forgiven. I said, “Forget all about it, I was not angry, so why should I forgive you? To forgive, one first has to be angry. I was not angry, I enjoyed the scene. In fact, it was something so beautiful that many people who had fallen asleep were suddenly awakened. I was thinking on the way that it is a good idea, that I should plant a few of my followers, so once in a while they can throw a shoe so all the sleepers wake up. At least for a few moments they will remain alert because something is happening. I am thankful to you.”
For years he went on writing to me, “Please forgive me. Unless you forgive me I will go on writing.”
But I told him, “First I have to be angry. Forgiving you simply means that I accept that I was angry. How can I forgive you? You forgive me, because I am unable to be angry with you, unable to forgive you, you forgive me.”
I don’t know whether he has forgiven me or not, but he has forgotten me. Now he writes no more.
Alas for the man
who raises his hand against another,
and even more for him
who returns the blow.
Why, Alas for the man who raises his hand against another…? – because he is raising his hand against himself, because there is no one who is other. All existence is one. When you hit somebody you are hitting yourself. You are simply being childish. It is the same reality: I am one of its waves, you are another of its waves. One wave hitting another wave in the ocean, are both hitting themselves.
Alas for the man who raises his hand against another, and even more for him who returns the blow. Why more for him? – because then he creates a vicious circle. And that’s how we are living, in many, many vicious circles. People go on fighting; once something starts then it seems there is no end to it. You do something in revenge and the other has to wait for his opportunity to do something against you, then you do something against him, and so on and so forth. It goes on from one life to another life, it continues.
The wise person is one, the master is one, who stops all these vicious circles.

Once a man was so angry he came and spat on Buddha’s face. Buddha asked him, “Is that all or do you want to do something more? Please do it and finish it.”
The man asked, “What do you mean, ‘Please do it and finish it’?”
Buddha said, “In a past life I had insulted you and now the time has come when the vicious circle can be closed. Now you insult me and I will not return anything; I will simply accept it and close the circle – it is just to close the accounts with you. I was waiting for you; in fact, the day I came into this town I was hoping that you would come and you would do something and the accounts could be closed. This is my last vicious circle; I have closed all others. Now I am out of all vicious circles. I am thankful to you; otherwise something was hanging in the air – only one thread, but something was hanging in the air, something incomplete.
“Now the circle is complete and I don’t want to continue it anymore. Now it is up to me to continue or not to continue. Now I am the master; up to now you were the master. By spitting on my face your mastery is gone; now I am the master and I don’t want to continue this vicious circle anymore. This is my last life and I want to close all accounts with everyone – good accounts, bad accounts, all kinds of accounts have to be closed so that I can disappear into the ultimate with no strings attached to the world. I am immensely happy,” Buddha said to him.
Resist the pleasures of life
and the desire to hurt –
till sorrows vanish.
Pleasure is dependent on others, and whatsoever is dependent on others will make you a slave, will create bondage. And Buddha’s ultimate goal is freedom, nirvana – freedom from all bondage.
Hence all the awakened ones have been saying: Search for bliss. Don’t waste your time in ordinary pleasures. In the first place they are momentary; in the second place every pleasure brings pain. Pain is the other side of the same coin. It brings pain in the same proportion; the greater the pleasure, the greater the pain. So when you are enjoying something, be aware: soon the pain will follow. It is inevitable. Just as the day follows the night and the night follows the day, pain and pleasure follow each other. They are not separate, they are inseparable.
First, pleasures are momentary, they are just soap-bubbles. To waste your precious life for them is simply stupid, unintelligent. Second, every pleasure brings pain. But people are so foolish that they never look at the association. They think pain has come from some other source, they think pleasures can be forever. Again and again they are ditched by their pleasures into pain; again and again they go on thinking that there were some reasons why this pleasure was destroyed.
Whether reasons were there or not is irrelevant; every pleasure is momentary, it is going to disappear, and in its wake will come the pain. You can rationalize it; that rationalization will only help you to continue in the same old rut. But see the fact. Seeing the truth is a great liberation; seeing that every pleasure is inevitably a bringer of pain, you will be freed from both.
And third: it is the same energy that is involved in pleasure which has to move toward bliss. Pleasure is dependent on others; bliss is totally independent, it is your own. It arises within your being, it is your self-nature; hence you are not dependent on anybody. And because it is your self-nature it is forever. There is no contrary, there is no opposite to bliss.
Happiness is just in between pleasure and bliss. In happiness something is independent and something is dependent; it is a mixture of both. Hence the man who lives in sheer pleasure is in a better condition in a way; he is healthy, as healthy as animals are. Animals live in sheer pleasure: when the pain comes they suffer, when the pleasure comes they enjoy. They go on rotating between pleasure and pain. The man who lives only in pleasures – a Don Juan – he is in a way healthy, normal, because he is part of the animal world; he is not yet human. In a way his life is clear, it has no complexity.
But the man who lives in happiness or tries to find happiness, lives for happiness, is far more confused because he is nowhere. He is neither the animal nor yet the divine; he is in a limbo. He is riding on two horses; he will be in very great difficulty. And that’s where almost all human beings are. It is very rare to find a human being who lives purely in pleasure – it is rare to find a Zorba the Greek who lives purely in pleasure. He is clear, there is no confusion in him. He simply walks on the earth; he has no idea of flying in the sky. He has accepted the law of gravitation and he knows no other law.
The man who lives for happiness, who knows the beauty of music, who knows the beauty of paintings, art, who knows something higher than the animals can know, is far more confused. He is in far more of a mess, because while you are listening to great music something is contributed by the music which is outside, and something is contributed by the music which is inside; it is a meeting of two polarities. You are hanging in the middle and both are pulling you in separate directions. You will find more anxiety in your life.
That’s why poor people are less in anguish than rich people. Rich countries live in anguish because they have enough pleasure; they are fed up with it. Now they want something higher, and with the higher the problems arise.
The animal part is well settled because it is your heritage of millions of years. It is in your chemistry, in your biology, in your physiology. Everything is settled, instinctive. You need not be aware, you need not do anything. But if you seek and search for happiness then you are going into a more shadowy world which is less substantial – higher but more shadowy.
The third goal is bliss, which again is very clear, as clear as the first –in fact far clearer than the first because the first has a clarity, but the clarity is of a much lower kind. The third has a clarity of the highest quality. Only the awakened one knows the clarity of the third.
Buddha says: Resist the pleasures of life… Become a little more mature. Don’t be childish, don’t remain animals. Put your energies toward the highest goal in life; let bliss be your goal.
People who live in pleasures also have one thing more in their life, and that is the desire to hurt others, because pleasures create competition. If you want more money, of course you have to snatch it from somebody else. If you want power, then somebody else will lose power. If you want to be the president, then somebody else will not be the president. Hence it is a constant struggle. You have to hurt many to succeed. You have to be very destructive, inhumanly destructive. It is only the goal of bliss which can be nonviolent; otherwise pleasures are going to be violent.
Buddha says: Resist the pleasures of life and the desire to hurt – till sorrows vanish. Be alert. He is not saying repress, he cannot say that. Be aware so that pleasures don’t pull you downward, so that slowly, slowly you are freed from your animal heritage, so that slowly, slowly you can transcend your biology.
Avoid the desire to hurt others. There is a certain joy in hurting others. We go on hurting people; it gives you the feeling of power. It helps you to feel that you are powerful when you can hurt somebody. It is a very ugly desire, egoistic, but everybody does that. Watch yourself, in how many ways you hurt people. You may not be doing anything in particular to hurt them, but your gesture may be enough. People walk in such a way, talk in such a way, that others are hurt. And nobody can blame them because what they are doing is so subtle. They use words which can hurt, and they use them with such skill that you cannot blame them. They can always find a way to rationalize.

A black gentleman was arrested for shooting a man. The next morning he was brought into court.
“Why did you shoot that man?” asked the judge.
“Because he called me a black sonofabitch!”
“You didn’t have any business shooting a man for that!”
“Well, Your Honor, what would you have done if he called you that?”
“Oh, he wouldn’t have called me that.”
“I know, Judge, but suppose he had called you the kind of a sonofabitch you are, then? Of course he cannot call you ‘a black sonofabitch’ – you are not black – but the kind of a sonofabitch you are, if he had called you that, what then?”

People can go on finding ways skillfully… One has to remain aware until all sorrows vanish.
Never offend
by what you think or say or do.
That does not mean, remember, that people will not be offended. They may still be offended, but it should not be an intention on your part. Buddha is not saying that nobody will be offended by the master, because thousands were offended by Buddha himself. Certainly many were offended by Jesus; otherwise why should he have been crucified?
Buddha is saying: Never offend by what you think or say or do. It should not be your intention. Still, it is going to happen: whenever the master speaks it is almost inevitable that many will be offended because they will understand in their own way what he is saying. They will not hear what he is saying; they will hear only what they can hear. They are going to misunderstand him. That is absolutely inevitable, it cannot be avoided.

It was late afternoon in a small town. Joe, the owner of the local beer parlor, was lazily polishing glassware when his friend, Mickey, came running in.
“Joe,” he shouted, “get over to your house real quick. I just stopped off to see if you were home and I heard a stranger’s voice in your bedroom. So I looked in the window and, gosh, I hate to tell you this, but your wife is in bed with another man!”
“Is that so?” said Joe, matter-of-factly. “What does this guy look like?”
“Oh, he is tall and completely bald.”
“And did he have a thick red mustache?” asked Joe.
“Right! Right!” yelled Mickey.
“Did you notice if he had a gold front tooth?”
“Damn it, man, you’re right!”
“Must be that jackass, Dick Roberts,” said Joe. “He’ll screw anything!”

Now, when you are talking to a husband about his wife it is a totally different matter. He does not care, he is no longer interested, he is fed up, he is finished. You may be excited that something has to be done, but the husband will hear through his experience of being a husband to the woman; he cannot put that experience aside.
I am saying something to you; you will hear it through your experiences, through your memories, through your ways of interpreting things. Nobody knows what you are going to gather out of it; that will be more your own than mine. I may have triggered the process, that’s all, but you will be the creator of the whole phenomenon.
Hence, remember, the master never offends, still people are offended.
Buddha says:
Honor the man who is awake…
That has been one of the most beautiful things in the East – that flower has bloomed in the East. The East can be proud of it: we have always honored the man who is awake. In other parts of the world, particularly in the West, the expert is honored, the technician is honored, the scientist is honored, the man who can do many things is honored. But the man who is conscious is not considered at all just for his consciousness.
Gurdjieff was not honored at all. In the East he would have been a buddha; in the West he was not honored at all. He was insulted in every possible way, for the simple reason that the West has no idea how to honor the awakened man because he fulfills no utilitarian purpose. If your machine is broken he cannot be of any help; he cannot fix your car, he cannot help you in any way in the world. In fact, all that he can do is help you to get rid of the world. And nobody wants to get rid of the world; everybody wants to be in possession of the world. Hence the expert is honored in the West; in the East the expert has not been honored, never. The expert is okay, he is a servant, he serves, he is paid for it. But we have honored the buddha.
To honor a buddha is to honor a roseflower, which has no utilitarian purpose. You cannot eat it. If it is a question of starvation, roses won’t help; wheat will be far better. If it is a question of choice between wheat and roses you are going to choose wheat. What are you going to do with roses? A buddha is like a rose: you can appreciate the beauty, you can dance around the rose, you can sing songs to it, you can look at the rose and praise the Lord, but what else? It cannot fill your hungry stomach, it cannot help you to succeed in the world, it cannot make you a great warrior. If you carry a roseflower you will not become Alexander the Great; a sword is needed, not a rose.
But the expert is as much asleep as you are; there is no difference, no qualitative difference. Hence in the East the expert is paid but he commands no honor.

A motion picture actor told his psychiatrist, “I’m attracted to men instead of women.”
The shrink replied, “You’ve come to the right place, handsome!”

Now the shrink cannot be honored in the East; in the West he has become one of the most honored people. He has even defeated the priests. Now priests are learning how to be shrinks; priests are going to the universities to learn psychotherapy, psychoanalysis, psychosynthesis and all kinds of nonsense, because now they know the profession of the priest is finished. They have to add something more to its glamour. And they see the shrink is getting higher and higher; he is the most highly paid person in the West. In the East nobody will think anything special about a shrink. Yes, he cannot be more than a motor mechanic, maybe he is a mind mechanic, he is also a plumber. You pay him, but honor is totally different.
Honor is due only where payment won’t do. Where you cannot pay, where there is no possibility of paying back, then honor. Honor is the acceptance of the fact that it is impossible to pay back; the debt cannot be paid.
Honor the man who is awake
and shows you the way.
Honor the fire of his sacrifice.
The buddhas show you the way. You have to walk, you have to go; buddhas only point. They don’t give you detailed directions because each individual is so unique and different that no detailed directions can be given. Only vague instructions, only indicators, pointers, hints at the most – not orders, not commandments…

I have heard the story about the Ten Commandments. Of course God had asked the Indians first, “Would you like to have a few commandments?”
They said, “No, not at all.”
Then he asked the French and they said, “We want to live in freedom, we don’t want any hindrances.”
And he went on asking and nobody was ready. Finally he asked Moses, “Would you like a few commandments?”
He said, “How much?”
And God said, “Free, absolutely free!”
He said, “Then I will have ten!”

Honor the man who is awake and shows you the way. He does not command you; he does not tell you, “Do this and don’t do that.” He simply gives you a few hints here and there, and keeps you free, allows you total freedom. He is not to be imitated or followed; he is only to be understood. You have to learn from the awakened person the beauty, the bliss of being awakened, that’s all, and then you have to search on your own. It is always an individual search, a private exploration. Truth cannot be transferred from one hand to another; it is nontransferable.
Honor the fire of his sacrifice… And why should a buddha be honored? – because of the fire of his sacrifice. It is impossible for you to understand the sacrifice of a buddha because it is absolutely invisible to you. You will know it only when you become a buddha. What he has known cannot be put into words, still he tries; it is a constant sacrifice.
What he has known is beyond the mind, yet he tries in every possible way to make you understand it, to help you understand it. He puts all his energy into making the incomprehensible comprehensible. His sacrifice is great. He takes so much trouble for no reason at all, because he is not going to gain anything out of it. His work is finished, his ship has arrived. He can leave the body any moment, any moment he decides, still he goes on living in the body – which is a confinement, which is a bondage. Still he goes on suffering in the body for the simple reason that he would like to convey the unconveyable. His compassion is infinite.

Ramakrishna suffered from cancer. Many times his disciples said to him, “Paramahansadeva, if it is too much of a pain, we will be very sad, miserable, but you please leave your body.”
He said, “It is all the same whether the body has cancer or does not have cancer. To be in the body now is a suffering; even if it is healthy it is a suffering because now I can be as vast as the sky. But for you I will cling to the body a little longer.”

The master has to find ways and means to cling to the body because all the old associations are broken, all the old connections are broken. He has to forge new connections, which is really one of the most difficult things in existence.

Ramakrishna was very interested in food, so much so that his wife was always feeling embarrassed. He would be talking to his disciples and suddenly in the middle of it he would rush to the kitchen and ask Sharda, “What are you cooking?”
It is just like if suddenly, in the middle of the lecture, I rush to the kitchen and ask Vivek, “What are you cooking?” and then come back again, and you have to wait.
Sharda said many times, “This is not right. What will the people think?”
Ramakrishna always laughed and never answered. One day Sharda persisted: “You answer me! There is something strange about it.” Whenever she brought his food he would stand up; he was so eager to know. He would remove the cloth and look into the thali. People were always sitting there and they would start laughing and giggling: “What kind of God-realized man is this?”
One day Sharda persisted, then Ramakrishna said, “If you want to know the truth I will tell you: this is the only way I am clinging to the body. I have created a false desire for food. And remember, the day I show no interest in food then that is the end. Only three days more will I live after that.”
Sharda did not pay much attention to it, who pays much attention to such people? They go on talking about things, so many things; you listen and you don’t pay much attention.
But one day Sharda came in with the thali. Ramakrishna did not stand up. Not only that: he was looking at the door, he turned his back toward Sharda and started looking out of the window in the other direction. Sharda suddenly remembered – the thali fell from her hands.
Ramakrishna said, “So now you understand; that day you missed. Now only three days more…” And exactly on the third day he died.

Only when you become enlightened, awakened, will you know how a man who has come home still goes on living in the caravanserai – dirty, ugly – and still goes on helping people who are insane. Honor the fire of his sacrifice. Hence, Buddha says, honor him.
Matted hair or family or caste
do not make a master
but the truth and goodness
with which he is blessed.

Your hair is tangled
and you sit on a deerskin.
What folly!
When inside you are ragged with lust.
Character is not a decisive factor. You can cultivate a beautiful facade around yourself, but the really decisive factor is your inside.
The master’s clothes are in tatters.
His veins stand out,
he is wasting away.
Alone in the forest
he sits and meditates.
For years Buddha was meditating in the forest, alone, not caring about his clothes, nor caring about his body, nor caring about anything except his meditation. Except for one thing all was dropped from his consciousness: how to reach the center. Once you have reached it then there is no problem, but before you can reach it, it has to be a single-pointed search. You have to be concentratedly concerned about only one thing, excluding everything else. Unless your search is so total, so whole, so wholehearted, you will not succeed in it.
Alone in the forest he sits and meditates. Wherever you are, learn to be alone, sit alone. It is difficult, the most difficult thing in the world, because when you are alone the mind starts dying. It cannot exist in aloneness, it needs company. Hence whenever you are alone the mind says, “Do something, go somewhere. Turn on the TV or the radio.” The mind wants company, engagement, occupation.
If you can be just alone, then sitting silently doing nothing, the spring comes and the grass grows by itself. One day your inner being blooms into a one-thousand-petaled lotus. That day you have also become a buddha, and only then will you be able to understand the meaning of Jesus’ life, the meaning of Buddha’s sayings, the meaning of Lao Tzu, Zarathustra. Before that whatsoever you try to understand is just your mind interpreting, and that interpretation has been one of the greatest causes of mischief.
Drop the mind – the only thing to be renounced in the world is the mind – and move toward the no-mind, the inner silence and serenity. Know yourself in your absolute aloneness and your life will be fulfilled, your life will be blessed: blessed with eternal bliss, blessed with truth, blessed with freedom.
Enough for today.

Spread the love