The Dhammapada Vol 5 07

Seventh Discourse from the series of 10 discourses - The Dhammapada Vol 5 by Osho.
You can listen, download or read all of these discourses on oshoworld.com.

All beings tremble before violence.
All fear death.
All love life.

See yourself in others.
Then whom can you hurt?
What harm can you do?

He who seeks happiness
by hurting those who seek happiness
will never find happiness.

For your brother is like you.
He wants to be happy.
Never harm him
and when you leave this life
you too will find happiness.

Never speak harsh words
for they will rebound upon you.
Angry words hurt
and the hurt rebounds.

Like a broken gong
be still, be silent.
Know the stillness of freedom
where there is no more striving.

Like herdsmen driving their cows into the fields
old age and death will drive you before them.

But the fool in his mischief forgets
and he lights the fire
wherein one day he must burn.

He who harms the harmless
or hurts the innocent
ten times shall he fall –

Into torment or infirmity,
injury or disease or madness,
persecution or fearful accusation,
loss of family, loss of fortune.

Fire from heaven shall strike his house
and when his body has been struck down
he shall rise in hell.
What is the greatest mystery of existence? It is not life, it is not love – it is death.
Science tries to understand life; hence it remains partial. Life is only a part of the total mystery, and a very tiny part – superficial, just on the circumference. It has no depth, it is shallow. Hence science remains shallow. It knows much and knows it in great detail, but all its knowing remains superficial – as if you know the ocean only by its waves and you have never dived deep into it, and you don’t know its infinity.
Life is finite, momentary. This moment it is there, the next moment gone. It is a breeze, coming and going. It does not abide; hence the claim of science that it knows the truth is not true. It knows only the partial truth, and to claim the partial as the total is one of the absurdities of the scientific approach. What it knows is true, but it is not the whole truth. And the moment you claim that the part is the whole, you falsify even the part.
Love is midway. It is exactly in the middle of life and death. It is half life, half death; hence the fear of love. Unless you are ready to die, you cannot know love – although by dying you become more alive. It is through death that love resurrects itself again and again. It is by disappearing that it appears again and again.
Love is far more mysterious than life itself, because it has life in it and something more too: life plus death. Fifty percent of love is life, fifty percent is death. And only those who are ready to die will know the life of love. Those who are afraid to die will never enter the mystery of love.
Art explores the world of love. Hence art is far truer than science, goes deeper than science. The vision of the artist contains much more than scientific knowledge can ever contain, although the way of art is totally different from the way of science. It has to be different. Science can be objective because it is peripheral. Art cannot be absolutely objective; it is fifty percent objective, fifty percent subjective. It cannot be free from the observer.
Science tries to be absolutely free from the observer; the observer should not enter into it, should not participate, should remain absolutely neutral, nonparticipant, a spectator. He should not bring himself into it. That is the scientific outlook.
But how can you avoid the knower? If you really want to know, the knower is bound to enter into knowledge.
The more perceptive scientists are becoming alert now to the phenomenon that it is impossible to be absolutely impartial: the observer is bound to be reflected by his observations. He cannot be a pure spectator. He will interpret, he will theorize, he will create hypotheses and he will move through his hypotheses. He will choose because the details are infinite. He will have to focus.
Who is going to decide where to focus, what to choose, what not to choose, in what direction to move? Because existence is multidimensional and you cannot move in all dimensions simultaneously, you can move only in one dimension, it is bound to be that what you know will be affected by the knower. But this has been the understanding of art from the very beginning.
When the scientist looks at a flower he tries to be just an observer. He simply takes note of what he sees; he does not bring his dreams, his visions into his observation. The poet has more freedom, the painter has more freedom. He moves deep into the phenomenon of the flower. He participates in its mystery, he is not separate; for a few moments he becomes one with it. There are moments when the poet dances with the flower – in the wind, in the sun, in the rain. There are moments when the poet becomes the flower, when the observer is the observed. There are moments when the poet not only looks at the flower but looks through the flower, becomes the eyes of the flower. Naturally, he dives deeper than science; he brings far bigger diamonds, far more precious stones.
Poetry, painting, sculpture, music come closer to reality because they are ready to participate. But they are only halfway.
Religion is concerned basically with death. Death contains all: death contains life, death contains love, and something more which neither life can contain nor love can contain. Death is the culmination of all, the crescendo, the highest peak. Life is the base, death is the peak – love is somewhere in between.
The religious mystic tries to explore the mystery of death. In exploring the mystery of death, he inevitably comes to know what life is, what love is. Those are not his goals. His goal is to penetrate death, because there seems to be nothing more mysterious than death. Love has some mystery because of death, and life also has some mystery because of death.
If death disappears there will be no mystery in life. That’s why a dead thing has no mystery in it, a corpse has no mystery in it, because it cannot die anymore. You think it has no mystery because life has disappeared? No, it has no mystery because now it cannot die anymore. Death has disappeared, and with death automatically life disappears. Life is only one of the ways of death’s expression.
The corpse has no mystery because with the disappearance of death, love is gone. Just one moment before there was great mystery; now there is nothing. You can only go and bury the dead or burn the dead. The full stop has come. The process has stopped. It is death that keeps the process going on. It is death that keeps you aware of something mysterious, miraculous, magical.
Religion is founded in the search into death, and to understand death is to understand all. To experience death is to experience all, because in the experience of death, you not only experience life at its highest, love at its deepest; in experiencing death you enter the divine. Death is the door to the divine. Death is the name of the door of God’s temple. The meditator dies voluntarily.
There are two kinds of death. One is the ordinary death; everybody dies it. That is not the mystic’s death. The ordinary death happens against you; you go into it very reluctantly. You don’t want to go into it, you cling to life. You don’t become available to it, you don’t become open to it. Hence you go on missing the point.
Many times you have died, but each time you died so obsessed with life that you could not see what death is. Your eyes were focused on life, you were clinging to life. You were snatched away, and the only way to snatch you away is to make you unconscious.
When the surgeon is going to operate on you he makes you unconscious, he gives you anesthesia. That’s what death has been doing for centuries, from eternity. If you can’t go joyously, dancingly into it, there is a built-in anesthesia: people become unconscious before they die. That’s why you don’t remember your past lives, because you became so deeply unconscious before you died that the chapter became closed.
If a person can die conscious, alert, he will remember his past life. That’s how India discovered that there is not only one life; you have lived millions of times. You are not new, you are very ancient pilgrims. But each time you died reluctantly, unconsciously; hence you forgot everything.
The mystic dies voluntarily. The mystic dies before the actual death; he dies in meditation. Lovers know a little bit of it because fifty percent of love is death. That’s why love is very close to meditation. Lovers know something of meditativeness; unaware they have stumbled upon it. Lovers know silence, stillness. Lovers know timelessness, but they have stumbled upon it – it has not been their basic search.
The mystic goes into it very consciously, deliberately. Meditation is total death, voluntary death. One dies into oneself. Before death comes, the mystic dies. He dies every day. Whenever he meditates he goes into death. He reaches to those heights, those depths, and, slowly, slowly, as meditation becomes natural, he starts living death. Then each moment of his life is also a moment of death. Each moment he dies to the past and remains fresh, because the moment you die to the past you become alive to the present.
He dies continuously and remains as fresh as dewdrops or lotus leaves in the early morning sun. His freshness, his youth, his timelessness, depend on the art of dying. And then when actual death comes he has nothing to fear, because he has known this death thousands of times. He is thrilled, enchanted; he dances! Joyously he wants to die. Death does not create fear in him; on the contrary, a tremendous attraction, a great pull.
And because he dies joyously he dies without becoming unconscious. He knows the total secret of death and knowing it, he has the master key that can unlock all the doors. He has the key that can open the door of existence.
And now he knows that he is not a separate individual. The very idea of separation was stupid. The very idea of separation was there because he was not aware of death. You think yourself separate as an ego because you don’t know what death is. If you know death, the ego will evaporate. And the moment the ego evaporates you start feeling for the whole existence.
That is why Buddha teaches nonviolence. It is not a moral teaching, not like Mahatma Gandhi. Mahatma Gandhi’s whole teaching is moral, social, political. It is ordinary; it has no mysticism in it. Buddha’s nonviolence is totally different, qualitatively different. When he teaches nonviolence he means there is nobody other than you. To hurt anybody is to hurt yourself. To destroy anything is to destroy yourself. To be against, inimical, antagonistic to anybody is to be against your own being – because there is only one being that permeates and pervades all.
Buddha never uses the word God, but by subtle hints he indicates again and again. This is his way of indicating. His respect for God is so tremendous that he feels to use the word God is to commit a crime. That is my understanding of Buddha. He does not use the word because of deep respect, great reverence. He has been misunderstood – as it happens always. All the buddhas are misunderstood, because the people who try to understand them have no insight, are blind, deaf.
Buddha has been thought to be an atheist. Nothing can be farther from the truth. Buddha has been thought to be against God. Nothing can be more untrue. Buddha’s reverence is such that he cannot assert the word God. To assert the word God is to create a separation; as if God is separate from me. The inseparableness is so much, the unity with God is so much, that even the word cannot be uttered.
That has been a tradition in ancient Israel: for centuries the name of God was not asserted. Only the highest priest of the great temple of Jerusalem was allowed, and that too in absolute aloneness, and that too only once a year. Nobody else was allowed to use the name of God. Only one day, once in a year, the highest priest, the purest, the most pious, the holiest man among all the Jews, would enter into the shrine, the innermost shrine of the temple. All the doors would be closed. Thousands of people would gather all around the temple just to be present there while the priest asserts the name of God. Nobody would hear it – the priest would whisper it.
You cannot shout the name of God; it can only be whispered in silence – and only once. It was a beautiful tradition. It shows reverence. Otherwise, beautiful words like God become contaminated, become profane. They become ugly.
Even now, Jews, whenever they use the word God or they write the word God, spell it differently. They don’t use the full spelling G-o-d. They simply use G-d, they leave out the o, just to show that, “We are not competent enough to assert the full name.” The essential part, the middle core of it, the very soul of it, is left out. And that o is beautiful because it is also the symbol zero. It is not only o but zero too, and zero is the innermost core of God.
Buddha calls it shunyata – emptiness, void. G and d are just peripheral; it’s okay, one can use them, but the innermost core has to be left unexpressed. It is because of tremendous reverence for God, for existence, that Buddha has never used the word. But hints are there; for the perceptive ones, for the sensitive ones, there are infinite hints. In each sentence there is a hint.
The moment you die consciously, in meditation, godliness is born – because you disappear as an ego. Then what is left? A stillness, a tremendously potential stillness, a silence that is pregnant – pregnant with the whole. When you disappear, boundaries disappear. You melt and merge with everybody else.
The poet, only once in a while, becomes attuned with the flower, attuned with the sunrise, attuned with a bird on the wing. The mystic becomes one with existence forever. He is the flower and he is the cloud and he is the sun and he is the moon and he is the stars. He starts living in a multidimensional way because the whole life is his. He lives in the tree as greenness, and in the rose as redness. He is on the wings of the bird, he is the roar of the lion and he is the waves of the ocean. He is all…how can he be violent? How can he hurt? How can he be destructive?
His whole life becomes creativity. The mystic is utterly creative.
The sutras:
All beings tremble before violence.
All fear death.
All love life.
Simple statements, but with great meaning.
All beings tremble before violence. Even unconscious animals tremble before violence. Even though you may not make them in any way alert that they are being killed, but still, before a sheep is killed, she trembles. Now the scientists have discovered that the same is true about trees. When the woodcutter comes into the garden or into the forest the trees tremble.
Now there are sophisticated instruments like cardiographs, to note the trembling of the heart of the tree, which can make a graph of what is happening to the inside of the tree. Even the entry of the woodcutter into the forest… He has not said anything, he has not yet cut a single branch of the tree, but the trembling arises as if some intuitive source makes the tree alert.
And scientists have watched a miracle: the same woodcutter with his ax on his shoulder may move through the forest. If he has not cut any tree – if he is just passing by the way, going to some other place – no tree trembles. It seems as if the intention of the woodcutter – just the intention, not any act – is being relayed, broadcast to the trees.
And one more thing they have observed. You may not cut the tree; a hunter may come and kill a tiger – but all the trees surrounding the place tremble. Even the death of the tiger is enough to make them sad, to make them afraid. What scientists have just now become aware of, within these last three or four years, the mystics have been aware of for centuries.
Buddha says: All beings tremble before violence. Violence is something against nature. The religious person cannot be violent – not that he practices nonviolence, remember. If you practice nonviolence you will become a Gandhian, a phony. The Gandhian is not a religious person. He practices nonviolence, he tries to become nonviolent – he has no understanding. He creates a character, but deep down he has no consciousness which can function as a center of that character.
The mystic first creates the consciousness, then the character follows on its own accord. And the moralist creates the character, but consciousness does not follow the character. Character is a very superficial thing. You can find thousands of people in this country who practice nonviolence, the Jainas particularly.
The Buddhists have forgotten all that Buddha has said. The day Buddhism had to leave India, it left its nonviolence too. Now Buddhists are all meat-eaters – the Chinese, the Japanese, the Koreans. Of course they have rationalized it. The rationalization is that, “We eat the meat only of those animals who have died a natural death.” So in China, in Japan or in Buddhist countries, you will find written on shops’ boards, “Here only that meat is served which has been taken from animals who have died a natural death.” Now, not so many animals are dying a natural death that they can supply the whole of Asia. But that’s enough – people are cunning.
But in India the Jainas are still practicing nonviolence. But because they practice it, it remains something false, something closer to hypocrisy. It does not transform their being, it does not make them luminous, it does not give them grace and beauty. And in their ordinary life they are as angry, as full of ambition – or even more so – than others. And that “more” can be understood; there is a reason.
They have somehow forced themselves to be nonviolent. Now where will their violence go? It will have to find some new ways, new outlets, because their master, Mahavira, who was a contemporary of Buddha, said to them: “Create a consciousness which is followed by nonviolence” – in the same way as Buddha said it. In the same way as Buddhists have misunderstood Buddha, they have found a legal way to get out of it.
“Don’t kill,” Buddha said. And they say, “We don’t kill; we only eat the meat of the animal who has died naturally.” This is a legal strategy to get out of it.
Jainas have followed in a routine way, without understanding, the message of Mahavira. Because Mahavira said: “Don’t kill animals, don’t cut down trees” – he was the first to say: “Don’t cut down trees” – Jainas have followed it, not understanding the depth and the significance of it, but only as a dead letter. They have followed literally, so they stopped farming because in farming you will have to cut down plants and trees.
They stopped being warriors. Mahavira was born into a warrior race; all twenty-four Jaina tirthankaras were warriors. Of course it is absolutely certain that the people who became interested in Jaina tirthankaras must have come, at least the majority of them, from the kshatriyas – the warrior race, the samurai of India. But they could not remain warriors anymore, they had to drop their swords.
They could not be warriors, they could not be farmers, and the brahmins wouldn’t allow them to be brahmins. And they were not interested either in being brahmins, because they were not interested in brahmin scriptures – because those scriptures are full of violence.
In those scriptures animal sacrifice is allowed; not only animal sacrifice but human sacrifice too: at the altar of God you can sacrifice human beings. Once in a while, even in these days, this twentieth century, it happens in India: once in a while a child is sacrificed, a man is sacrificed – even now!
They could not become brahmins, they could not remain kshatriyas, warriors. They would not like to become sudras. To be cobblers was impossible because that is violence, and it was against their ego to become sweepers. Then the only possible way for them was to be business people. So all the Jainas became business people, and their whole repressed violence became their ambition, their greed.
Hence the Jainas’ is a small community in India, a very small community, but it manages and controls the biggest part of the wealth of the country. It is the richest community. All the violence became directed toward one thing: money. You can hurt people by being rich without hurting them in any visible way. You can exploit people. You need not kill them, you need not drink their blood, but you can still exploit them to such an extent that no blood is left in them. That’s what happened with the Jainas. That is always going to happen if you try to do the superficial first.
It is as stupid as if I want to invite you for dinner – I need not invite your shadow, it comes with you. If I invite your shadow, the shadow is not going to come; it cannot come and there is no question of your coming because you are not invited at all.
Character is a shadow phenomenon, consciousness is the center. Character simply reflects consciousness. So these sutras have to be understood not as moral teachings, but as spiritual insights. All beings tremble before violence. “All beings” means trees, birds, animals, men…
We are so cunning that we go on saying that man is the master. Animals are created for him to enjoy, trees are created for him. Not only do we make distinctions and differences between man and other animals and other planes of existence, we make differences in humanity too.
For example, Adolf Hitler used to think that the Germans, particularly the Nordics, the purest Germans, are made by God to dominate the whole world. All other races are a little lower than the pure Aryans. So if they don’t yield, don’t surrender, they can be destroyed.
Jews have always thought that they are the chosen people. Hindus have always thought that they are the most pious people, God’s own people; God always takes birth in Hindu families, nowhere else. Hindus have always thought that this country, India, is the only sacred country. But this stupidity is nothing special to Hindus; everybody thinks that way.
Mohammedans think that God has given the real and the final dispensation to Mohammed in the Koran. Now there is no need for any master, no need for any Buddha. The Koran is the full stop; evolution has stopped at the Koran. And Mohammedans have the privilege and the responsibility to turn the whole humanity into Mohammedans. And if people resist they have to be killed for their own sake.
And so is the case with Christians, because their Jesus is the only begotten Son of God. And what are all others – bastards? Only Jesus is the only begotten Son of God, and you can reach heaven only through Jesus – not through Buddha, not through Krishna, not through Zarathustra. No, Jesus is the only way, the only truth.
So not only in animals and trees have we made a hierarchy, we are trying to make a hierarchy in man too. All men are the same. Yes, there may be superficial differences – which is good. It will be very sad if those superficial differences disappear. They make life more enchanting; they give life variety, color. They make life a garden, full of different colors and different perfumes. Small differences are beautiful; they have to be cherished, they have not to be destroyed. Man has not to be made into a single kind of humanity. These differences – of Jews and Hindus and Mohammedans and Christians – are beautiful. The differences in Chinese and Japanese and Germans and English and French and Italians, are beautiful, but these are superficial things.
At the core, all human beings are equal and the same.

Put two men and a woman on a desert island and this is what surely will happen:
If they are Jewish, the two men will play cards to see who gets the woman.
If they are English, they will discuss the weather and ignore the woman because they are more interested in each other.
If they are French, the two men will share the woman.
If they are Italian, the woman will kill one of the men.
If they are Eskimos, one of the men will claim the woman and then lend her to the other man.
If they are Americans, they will still be discussing the matter, trying to find a fair and amicable way to settle the problem.

These differences are there, and these differences are beautiful and they have to be cherished. They are lovely, they make the earth beautiful; otherwise it will be very boring.

The following ad appeared in the personal column of a London paper: “My husband and I have four sons. Has anyone any suggestions as to how we may have a daughter?”
Letters poured in from all over the world. An American wrote, “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.”
An Irishman sent a bottle of Scotch with instructions to drink the entire contents before retiring.
A German offered his collection of whips.
A Mexican recommended a diet of tacos and refried beans.
An Indian proposed Yoga, particularly shirshasana – the headstand.
A Frenchman merely wrote, “May I be of service?”

These differences are good, beautiful; they should be helped to grow. But the basic, the fundamental being is the same, not only in human beings but in all beings. The tree has a being – only its body is different from you; and the tiger has a being – only its body is different from you. The differences are only on the circumference. The center is always the same because the center is one. The name of the center is godliness.
All beings tremble before violence. All fear death. All love life. There is no need to prove these things. These are simple observations of everybody. But a few conclusions can be drawn from them. If all beings tremble before violence, then there is something wrong in violence, basically wrong. It is against nature.
Destructiveness is not natural, creativeness is natural. Not violence but compassion is natural, not violence but love. Not anger, not hate, because those are the things that lead to violence, those are the seeds. Love, compassion, sharing, these are natural. And to be natural is to be religious.
All fear death. Hence, do not kill. Rather, help people to know death. Their fear is because of ignorance. They are afraid of death because death is the greatest unknown. There is no way to know death unless you die. Help people to know death through meditation, because that is a way of dying and still remaining alive.
All love life. Hence, love. Create contexts, spaces, where more love can grow. That’s what I am doing here: creating a space where your love energies can flow, where they have no hindrance, no obstructions.
All the societies of the world have been too war-oriented, hence they have not allowed love – because if you allow love to flow, war disappears. If you allow love and help love and create contexts for love to grow and happen, it will be impossible for you to make people fight each other and kill each other.
So from the very beginning we have to give them military training. From the very beginning children have to be taught hatred. The Hindu is told to hate the Mohammedan, the Mohammedan is told to hate the Hindu. The Christian hates the Jew, the Jew hates the Christian, and so on, so forth. Each nation hates another nation, and in each nation also there are different, small communities which hate each other: Maharashtrians hating Gujaratis, Gujaratis hating Maharashtrians.
India is one country, but the North hates the South, the South hates the North. The Hindi-speaking people hate the non-Hindi-speaking people, and the non-Hindi-speaking people are always against the Hindi-speaking people.
It seems that we have been brought up in such a way that hate has become simple, habitual; we are habituated to it, and love has become almost impossible. With so much hatred, with so many enemies, you are hating almost everybody. How can you love your wife? How can you love your children? How can you love your parents? And then impossible demands are made on you: you are told to love your wife, to love your husband, and you are told to hate everybody else in the world. These are contradictions. Either you can love all or you can hate all; you cannot divide.
The man who hates everybody else cannot love his wife – it is impossible. He becomes accustomed to hate. Hate flows in his blood, it circulates in his being. If for twenty-three hours in the day you are hating, fighting, struggling, competing, then do you think for one hour back home with your wife you will be loving? Impossible. Those twenty-three hours will continue underneath.
So the policeman becomes a policeman twenty-four hours. Even when he is at home with his wife he behaves as if he is a policeman. The magistrate becomes a magistrate, the clerk becomes a clerk twenty-four hours – not only in the office, he carries his files in his head. Even while making love to his wife he is calculating, he is doing a thousand and one other things in his mind. He may be in the office or he may be somewhere else…
Just watch when you are making love to your wife, where you are. Are you there? In fact, somebody else is making love to your wife; you are not there – it is just a mechanical act. And do you think your wife is there? She is also not there. She may be in the kitchen or thinking how to purchase a new fridge – may already be gone to the supermarket. She may be there; she may not be with you at all.
That’s why your love is not satisfying; on the contrary, it leaves you very frustrated. And can you love your children? Impossible. How can you love your parents? – these are the people who have taught you all kinds of hatreds.
We need a totally different world, a different upbringing, where hate is not taught. This is a very strange world that we have created. Up to now what we have done to humanity is really unbelievable: on the one hand we teach them hate, and on the other hand we go on talking about peace. On the one hand we poison them, and on the other hand we tell them, “You are all brothers.” We talk about brotherhood, and we prepare for war; we talk about world peace, and we prepare for war. This is sheer neurosis; this is not sanity. Man hitherto has remained insane, and the reason is a wrong upbringing.
We have not listened to the buddhas yet. Now it is time! We have to listen to the buddhas now. If we don’t listen, just a few more years and the whole humanity will be doomed. We cannot afford anymore not to listen.
All love life. Help people to love more. Love yourself. Rejoice in love.
See yourself in others.
Then whom can you hurt?
What harm can you do?
See the point: this is not a moral teaching – this is a spiritual regeneration, a revolution. See yourself in others. Not only philosophically, but existentially. Put the ego aside and you will be able to see that you are in all, that life is one. Then whom can you hurt? What harm can you do?
He who seeks happiness
by hurting those who seek happiness
will never find happiness.
If you are trying to seek happiness by hurting those who also are seeking happiness, you cannot find happiness, because you have not even understood the most fundamental thing about life. In such ignorance how can you be happy?
Just look all around, look with loving eyes, look with egoless mind, and you will see that life is absolutely against destructiveness. Life is creative energy. Even if sometimes people commit suicide, they commit it not in the service of death but in the service of life.
The people who commit suicide are the people who have been in tremendous love with life and feel frustrated, disillusioned. In those moments of disillusionment they go insane. Those people who commit suicide are not against life, remember. Ordinarily that’s what is thought about these people, that they are against life. No, they are too much for life; they are so much for life that life cannot fulfill their demands. In utter frustration they commit suicide.

Mulla Nasruddin was so discouraged with life that he decided to commit suicide. One evening he walked out to the country, a loaf of bread tucked under his arm. When he came to a train junction he lay down on the railroad tracks. A peasant passing by was amazed by the strange sight.
“What are you doing,” he asked, “lying on these tracks?”
Said the Mulla, “I am going to commit suicide.”
“What do you need the bread for?” asked the peasant.
“In this country,” said the Mulla, “by the time the train gets here, a man could starve to death.”

Nobody wants to die. That means life wants to persist for ever and ever. That means life is in love with eternity. In fact life is eternal. Death only changes the form, it does not destroy – but it creates fear because it is the most unknown phenomenon.
Fear disappears only when, in deep meditation, you become acquainted with death; when in deep meditation you know: “I am not the body, not the mind. Then how can there be death?” The body will go into the earth – dust unto dust – but your consciousness will persist forever. Then fear disappears. And when fear disappears in you, a great desire arises to help others so that they too can dissipate their fear – because people living in fear are living in anguish. Their lives are a nightmare surrounded by fear.
Life should be surrounded by love, not by fear. It is fear that creates anger. It is fear that ultimately creates violence. Have you seen that fear is only a feminine form of anger and anger is a masculine form of fear? Fear is a passive form of anger and anger is an active form of fear. So you can change fear into anger very easily, and anger into fear – very easily.
Sometimes people come to me and they say, “We are feeling very afraid.”
I tell them, “Go and beat the pillow and be angry with the pillow.”
They say, “What will that do?”
I say, “Just try.” And it becomes a revelation even to them. If they can beat the pillow in real, hot anger, immediately fear disappears, because the same energy turns and becomes active. It was inactive, then it was fear. Fear is the root cause of hate, anger, violence. Help people not to be afraid. But how can you help people not to be afraid unless you know what fearlessness is?
He who seeks happiness by hurting those who seek happiness will never find happiness. You can find happiness only if you help others also toward happiness. You cannot find happiness alone; that’s what you have been trying. You have been trying to be happy alone and let the others go to hell. You are not so alone; we are joined together with each other. If everybody else is going to hell, you cannot go to heaven, remember.
There is a beautiful parable about Gautam Buddha:

He arrives at the gate of heaven. The doors are flung open for him, great music is there to receive him, and angels with garlands, but Buddha refuses to enter. He says, “I will wait here. Till the last being has entered into heaven I cannot enter.”
The angels persuade him: “It will take eternity for everybody – all men, all women, and all elephants, and ants and… If you are thinking for all beings to enter first, then it will take eternity!”
Buddha says, “It is nothing to be worried about – I will wait. I can wait, I know how to wait. And I am eternally blissful already – what more can heaven give to me? There is nothing more than that. So I will wait here, but I cannot enter heaven unless everybody else has entered.”
And the story goes that Buddha is still waiting at the gate; the angels are still trying to persuade him. Again and again they try new arguments, but they have not yet been able to take him in and close the door. And the doors are open and Buddha is waiting…

There can be a thousand and one interpretations of this beautiful parable. Today I would like to remind you of one thing: even if Buddha wants to get in alone, he cannot. He understands that, that’s why he is saying: “Till the last being has entered, I am not going to enter” – because he understands that it is impossible.
We are all one, we are not separate. It is not possible just for my hand to enter heaven; even if it enters it will be a dead hand, it will not be really my hand. It is not possible for one of my eyes to enter heaven and the whole body to remain outside. Either I can enter as a whole being or not at all. That’s what Buddha is saying.
Buddha is saying, “I am only a part – the total is outside. I cannot enter. I will enter only with the whole.” If you understand this, your approach, your relationship with life, will have a totally different flavor. You will see all are friends, you will befriend life. In that very befriending you will start becoming happy. In that love for all, a great bliss will arise in you.
For your brother is like you.
He wants to be happy.
Never harm him
and when you leave this life
you too will find happiness.
This sutra has been misinterpreted for at least twenty-five centuries.
…and when you leave this life you will find happiness. This has been interpreted again and again as if it says something about life after death: “When you leave this life, when you leave this body, then you will find happiness” – as if happiness is something which happens only after death; it cannot happen in life. This has been the way of the Buddhist interpreters.
I am not a Buddhist. The Buddhists have been interpreting it in a life-negative way. My interpretation is totally different. And I say to you that that is exactly what Buddha meant it to be, because I am not just interpreting it in a philosophical way – it is my experience too. And as far as experience is concerned it can’t be different; it is not different from Buddha’s experience.
When Buddha says: …and when you leave this life… he does not mean death. He simply means this way of living this life, this way of stupid living: this way of desires, ambitions, anger, possessions, jealousies – this foolish way of life. And everybody who is not getting deeper into meditation is living in a foolish way.

Wiznicki and Polacek went to a used car lot to buy a car. They didn’t have enough money to buy one but the salesman sold them a camel.
“Does this thing work?” asked Wiznicki.
“Of course,” said the salesman. “This camel stops at red lights and goes on green.”
Wiznicki and Polacek left on the back of the camel but in twenty minutes they were back without the animal.
“What happened?” asked the salesman.
“Camel do what you say all right,” exclaimed Polacek. “We stop at red light, boys in car pull up beside us. One boy yell out, ‘Look at those two jerks on the camel.’ We got off to see who the two jerks were and camel ran away!”

If you look at your life, if you watch closely, you will see what a fool you are, what a jerk you are.
To live without meditation is to be foolish, because whatsoever you do then is going to be wrong. You cannot do right without meditation because right only grows in the soil of meditation. In the soil of the mind ambitions, desires arise. And when there is ambition there is competition, and when there is competition you are not a friend to others. You are an enemy and others are your enemies. The competitive mind lives in an inimical way, lives in hatred, lives in jealousy; its whole function is out of jealousy. And because of this kind of life man suffers, he remains in misery.
When Buddha says: …and when you leave this life you too will find happiness, he means if you leave this life of ambition, jealousy, hatred, competition, if you leave this life of the ego, you will find happiness – immediately, instantly, herenow. It is not a question of after death. It is not a question that after death you will be happy. You can be happy this very moment – you just have to change your pattern of life.
And the pattern of your life can be changed in two ways: either from the outside, from without – which is character, which is morality – or from the inside, from the interiority, from within – which is religion.
Don’t be a moralist. That is not a way of real revolution, it is all hocus-pocus. The moralist is an egoist in a new way. He lives in misery. Only one who has started living from the center, who enters his own subjectivity in deep silence, will have happiness showering on him.
Never speak harsh words
for they will rebound upon you.
Angry words hurt
and the hurt rebounds.
A fundamental of life: whatsoever you do rebounds on you. If you use harsh words, they will rebound. If you hurt people, that will come back to you.

Once I was in Matheran with a few friends. We went to visit a place called Echo Point. One man was with us who started barking like a dog, and all the valleys and the mountains surrounding started barking as if thousands of dogs were there.
I told the man, “Why don’t you sing a song? – because these mountains will only echo it. If you bark like a dog they will become dogs. Why don’t you sing a song?”
The man started singing a song; we were showered by his beautiful song. From all the valleys and the mountains the song started coming back to us.
I told the people who were present that life is also an echo point. It gives you whatsoever you give to it. You have to reap the crop, whatsoever you have sown before. Sowing the seeds of poison, don’t hope that you will be reaping a crop of nectar; you will not be able to attain to nectar by the seeds of poison. Poison will bring more poison. Sow the seeds of nectar and reap the crop of nectar.
Never speak harsh words
for they will rebound upon you.
Angry words hurt
and the hurt rebounds.

Like a broken gong
be still, be silent.
Know the stillness of freedom
where there is no more striving.
This is the most pregnant sutra of all the sutras of today. This is the secret of meditation, this is what meditation is all about.
Like a broken gong be still, be silent. Know the stillness of freedom… What is …the stillness of freedom…? – freedom from desire. It is desire that creates noise in you. And there is not only one desire in you, there are millions of desires clamoring for attention, asking you, pulling you, pushing you, to follow them. You are falling apart because you are continuously being pulled and pushed in different directions.
Know the stillness of freedom… That means freedom from desires. Then there is stillness.
…where there is no more striving. When there is no desire there is no more striving. Where there is no longer a goal there is no more striving. Where you are no longer ambitious for anything – worldly or otherworldly, material or spiritual – when you are not ambitious at all, how can there be a noise in your being? All is bound to become silent. This is true silence.
There is another kind of silence too. You can sit in a Yoga posture, you can take deep breaths, and you can chant a mantra, and you can force your mind again and again for months, years. If you go on doing such a thing, after years of practice you may attain to a certain stillness which will be forced, artificial. And if you will look deep within yourself you will find all the noise has become only repressed; it is still there lurking underneath you. It is no longer on the surface, it has gone to the bottom. And that is even more dangerous, because if something is in the conscious, getting rid of it is easy; if something becomes unconscious, then getting rid of it becomes impossible.
Hence psychoanalysis tries to bring everything to the conscious so that you can get rid of it. It brings your dreams, your unconscious messages, to the conscious – because the only way to get rid of anything is to become fully conscious of it. Then it is up to you to keep it or to throw it away, but to remain unconscious is to be a victim. Your strings are pulled from behind the curtain and you don’t know who is pulling them. You are just a doll pulled this way and that. You are simply following unconscious desires.
Psychoanalysis brings your repressed desires to the conscious, but it cannot do it totally – because even the presence of the psychoanalyst is enough to keep you repressed. Only meditation can help you totally, because you are not bringing it to somebody else’s notice, you are bringing it in front of your own being. You can be absolutely free. You need not be afraid what the other will think.
The presence of the other is always repressive even though the psychoanalyst says, “Don’t be worried, don’t be afraid, I am not going to disclose it to anybody. This will remain a secret with me, this will die with me.” Whatsoever he says, his presence is enough to repress, because it is impossible for him not to be judgmental. If you are saying something which goes against his mind you can see in his eyes that the judgment has arisen.
It is because of this that Sigmund Freud used to sit behind a curtain; he never used to face the patient. He was fully aware of the phenomenon that the face, the eyes, the gestures, will show that you are judgmental, that you are judging. And if you are judging, the fear arises and repression happens. But even if you are sitting behind a curtain, the person knows you are there. The other is there and the other is repressive.
Hence psychoanalysis helps only partially. And you know perfectly well that your psychoanalyst is as ill as you are, or maybe even more ill than you are. Psychoanalysts themselves go to other psychoanalysts to be psychoanalyzed, because they are suffering from the same problems.

Sigmund Freud and Carl Gustav Jung were traveling in a train together, when Jung was still a disciple and had not betrayed the master. Talking about psychoanalysis, Jung suddenly had an idea. He said, “You have psychoanalyzed us all, but you yourself are still unpsychoanalyzed. Would you like some of us to psychoanalyze you? I am ready. If you want, I can function as your psychoanalyst.”
Sigmund Freud started trembling, perspiration came to his forehead although it was a cold winter morning. He said, “No, never.”
Jung asked, “Why?”
Sigmund Freud said, “That will destroy my whole prestige.”
Jung said, “Then it has destroyed your prestige already. If you are afraid, then how can you say in front of us that others should not be afraid – if even you are afraid?”

Sigmund Freud was afraid because he was carrying great repressions. He was so repressed about a few things that it is rare to find a person so repressed. He has done great work in bringing sex into the human consciousness from the repressed world. He has done the greatest service to humanity by destroying the taboo against sex, but he himself had very funny ideas about sex. He was not clear himself about sex, sexuality. He was carrying all kinds of dead, rotten ideas about sex himself. He was very much afraid of death too. Even the mention of death once or twice had made him go into a faint; just the mention of death and he had fainted, become unconscious.
Now, this is the founder of psychoanalysis – who is fainting at the mention of the word death and carrying very stupid, funny ideas about sex. What to say about other psychoanalysts – they are in the same boat as their patients, and their patients know it perfectly well.
No, it is not possible for you to expose yourself totally in front of anybody else, hence in the East we never developed anything like psychoanalysis. We developed meditation which is exposing yourself in front of yourself. That is the only possibility to be utterly true, because there is no fear.
Freedom from desire, freedom from the unconscious, freedom from all kinds of goals, brings a different kind of stillness, a natural stillness that arises within your being, starts overflowing. Even others can feel it; it becomes almost tangible.
Like herdsmen driving their cows into the fields
old age and death will drive you before them.
Death is going to come sooner or later. Before death comes, learn how to die in meditation.
But the fool in his mischief forgets
and he lights the fire
where one day he must burn.
The fool goes on creating ditches for himself. You create your own misery, because you act out of unconsciousness, you act out of a noisy, cloudy mind. You don’t act out of clarity; your action is not out of spontaneity; your action is not out of meditative silence. It creates fire. You may be thinking you are creating it for others, but everything rebounds on you.
There is no hellfire anywhere else unless you create it. Everybody has to carry his heaven or hell within himself – it is your own creation.
He who harms the harmless
or hurts the innocent
ten times shall he fall –

Into torment or infirmity,
injury or disease or madness,
persecution or fearful accusation,
loss of family, loss of fortune.

Fire from heaven shall strike his house
and when his body has been struck down
he shall rise in hell.
Fire from heaven shall strike his house… It is not that somebody is sitting there in heaven who punishes you: you spit in the sky and it falls on you, you throw fire in the sky and it falls on you. You go against the current – that is your whole misery.
Go with nature. Go absolutely in tune with nature, not up-current but with the current. Don’t push the river, float with it. And life will be a bliss, and life will be an ecstasy, and life will be a benediction. Otherwise fire will strike your home. …and when his body has been struck down he shall rise in hell. And this happens every day.
When you go to sleep, many of you suffer from nightmares. Many write to me, “What to do about nightmares?” You cannot do anything directly about nightmares; you will have to change your pattern of life. Your nightmares are produced by what you are doing and thinking in the day. Your night is simply a reflection. If your day is beautiful, blissful, loving, you can’t have nightmares. And if your day is silent, still, utterly thoughtless, contentless, absolutely pure, whole, knowing no disturbance then all dreams will disappear. In the night you will have a dreamless sleep.
The same happens when death comes. When the body falls, if you have lived rightly, mindfully, meditatively, immediately you experience heaven. Otherwise, you experience hell. These are not geographical places somewhere; these are when you leave the body. The mind left alone goes berserk. The mind left alone, unoccupied, creates something for which you have been sowing the seeds your whole life.
Now psychologists are slowly, slowly agreeing with this, that when a person dies, and even while he is dying he is already entering into either a nightmare that is hell, or into a very, very beautiful space that is paradise.
The third thing is neither hell nor heaven, neither happiness nor unhappiness, but just pure awareness. That is nirvana, that is moksha. There is no word to translate it, because in all the non-Indian religions – Christianity, Judaism, Islam – only two words have been talked about: heaven and hell. The third is missing, the highest is missing.
That’s why I say these three religions are a little primitive compared to Buddhism. Buddhism reaches to the highest peak – it transcends heaven and hell too.
One can die in absolute silence – fully alert, experiencing neither pleasure nor pain. Then he will not be born again. Then he has jumped out of the ugly wheel of life and death. He has become one with the cosmos. To become one with the cosmos is nirvana. He has ceased as an individual being and he has become the whole.
Become still; not a forced stillness, not a practiced and cultivated stillness, become still naturally. Understanding the futility of desire, seeing the absolute absurdity of ambition, become still – through understanding, not through practice.
Like a broken gong be still, be silent. Know the stillness of freedom where there is no more striving, and you have gone into the beyond and you have become the beyond.
This is the goal of sannyas, this is the goal of all religion. This is the essential core of all spirituality. Science only knows the part; art a little more than science. Religion knows the whole.
Enough for today.

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