The Dhammapada Vol 8 02

Second Discourse from the series of 13 discourses - The Dhammapada Vol 8 by Osho.
You can listen, download or read all of these discourses on oshoworld.com.

The first question:
What is the golden rule in Gautam Buddha's philosophy?
Once George Bernard Shaw was asked, “Is there a golden rule in life?” He said, “There is only one golden rule: that there are no golden rules.”
Life is not mechanical; that’s why there is a possibility of religion. If life was mechanical, totally rooted in rules, in cause and effect, in causality, then science would have been enough. And science is not enough.
Science only touches the periphery of life; the innermost core remains untouched. Science only knows the rudimentary; it does not know the highest peak. It knows only the bodily part of existence but not its spiritual center. It is concerned with the circumference and utterly unaware of the center.
Hence there are no golden rules. Life is freedom, it is consciousness, it is bliss, it is love – but not law.
That’s why I am very reluctant to translate Buddha’s word dhamma as the “universal law”; it misses something very significant. Dhamma has freedom in it; freedom is the goal of dhamma. And law is absolutely without freedom. Law is like a goods train running on tracks, and dhamma is like a river descending from the peaks of the Himalayas, going zigzag, in absolute freedom, spontaneity, with no fixed routine, unpredictable, toward the ocean.
Life can be lived in rules, but then life becomes superficial. Live life, not according to laws, but according to consciousness, awareness. Don’t live life according to the mind. Mind has rules and regulations, mind has rituals. Live life from the standpoint of no-mind so that you can bloom into unpredictable flowers.
Buddha has no golden rule in his philosophy.

According to Peter’s Principle, the golden rule of life is: whoever has the gold makes the rules.

And Buddha has no gold – he can’t make a golden rule. And secondly, he has no philosophy either. He has a vision, a darshan, a philosia, but not philosophy. A philosia simply means the capacity to see. Philosophy is thinking, philosia is seeing. Buddha is not concerned with thinking at all; his whole emphasis is on seeing. See the truth, don’t believe in it. Don’t think about it. You can go on thinking about it and about it, but you will never arrive at it by thinking about it.
Thinking about godliness has nothing to do with godliness. Thinking about light has nothing to do with light. In fact, only a blind man thinks about light. The man who has eyes enjoys light, he does not think about it. Have you ever thought about light? You enjoy it, you live it. It is dancing everywhere among the trees: you feel it, you experience it. Buddha is not a philosopher, in the Western sense of the word. He is a seer who has seen. And because he has seen he has become free: free of mind. The mind is needed only if you are a thinker.
Plato and Kant and Hegel and Marx and Bertrand Russell are philosophers. Lao Tzu, Buddha, Zarathustra, Jesus, Pythagoras, Heraclitus, Eckhart are not philosophers; they are seers. These are two totally different currents.
Belong to the seers. Be a seer, because without seeing the truth there is no deliverance.

The second question:
The other day I understood that you don't know each and every one of us. But isn't it really important that you know us personally? The master leads the disciple by the hand toward the abyss, but how is this possible if you don't know us, and who is who?
The personality is false; the master never knows his disciples by their personality. He never knows them personally, he knows them essentially. And there is a great difference between the two. To know you personally is meaningless. What is your personality? – the accident of your birth, the accident of your upbringing – as a Hindu, Mohammedan, Christian – your name, your face, your color, your country. All these things make your personality; and all these things are false, all these things are accidental.
I am concerned with the essential core of your being – and that is not different. It is the same core in everyone. The original face is the same behind all the faces. It has no color; it has no form, no shape. It has nothing to do with your father and mother, with your country. It has nothing to do with your name. I am concerned with your original face.
You come into the world without a name. The name has a certain utility in the world. The master knows you not by your accidents; he knows you by your essence. He does not know you personally; he knows you spiritually.
So I don’t know who is who, but I know the “who” behind all “who’s” – the essential one.
You say, “The master leads the disciple by the hand toward the abyss…” I have got only two hands, and if I go on leading disciples by the hand toward the abyss, then it will take much time to finish all my disciples! That won’t do. Jesus may have done it – he had only twelve disciples – but how can I manage that?
I have to work out a different way. I cannot take you by your hands. I catch hold of your souls; for that, hands are not needed. And I know you perfectly: you, as you are before existence, in your utter nudity, in your bare essence.
So don’t be worried. If I have to know everybody personally I will have to carry a big book, who is who. And then too it will be very difficult to find out.
The more and more you become meditators, your differences start disappearing, you become more and more alike. Your faces, your eyes, your climate, become more and more similar.
The moment you come close to the abyss to take the ultimate jump, you are no longer a separate entity. You are one with the whole. I have to persuade your essence to take the jump; and that’s what I am doing. You need not be worried, you need not become concerned.
Yes, you would like to be known by your personal name, you would like to be recognized. That is nothing but a deep, deep ego desire. And that’s what I want to shatter completely. So even if I know you, I pretend not to know you.

The third question:
How can one drop an obsession? Or is it not to be dropped at all, but enjoyed?
An obsession simply means a wound in your being, which keeps attracting you again and again, which goes on declaring itself, which wants your attention. You cannot drop it. How can you drop your wound? An obsession is a psychic wound, you cannot drop it. Understand it. Watch it. Pay attention to it. Be meditatively with it. And the more you are meditatively with it, the more it will be healed.
Meditation is a healing force. The words meditation and medicine are derived from the same root; they both mean healing forces. Meditation is medicine – medicine for the soul.
So if you have an obsession, don’t name it. The moment you call it an obsession you have already started condemning it. And if you condemn something you cannot watch it – you are prejudiced against it. How can you watch the enemy? No need to condemn; whatsoever is the case is the case. Just by condemning it you can’t change it; by condemning it you can only repress it. You can avoid seeing it, but the wound will continue; it will become cancerous, it will go on growing inside.
Rather than condemning it, rather than calling it names, giving it labels, watch it – without any conclusion. See what it is. See as deeply as possible, with great friendliness toward it, with intimacy. It is your obsession, your wound; it says something about you, it is part of your biography. It has arisen in you, just as flowers arise in trees. It is essential because it says something about your past. Go deeply into it, with care, with love, and you will be surprised: the more care you show about it, the less it hurts, the less it dominates, the less it forces itself upon you.
Yes, in a certain way, enjoy it! But by enjoying I don’t mean become identified with it. If you become identified with it you go insane. If you condemn it, if you repress it, you go insane. Avoid both extremes. Keep yourself exactly in the middle, neither condemning nor identifying. Just be a pure witness.
And slowly, slowly it will be healed. Slowly, slowly it will lose all its poison. Slowly, slowly you will see it changing into a positive energy rather than a negative force. It will become helpful. Each obsession is a knot in your being. Once it is opened, great energy is released.
And everybody is carrying obsessions; our whole society is obsessive. A few obsessions are accepted by the people; then you don’t call them obsessions. If they are not accepted, then they become obsessions. In one society one thing is thought to be obsessive, in another society it is not obsessive. It may be even respected, may be thought saintly, holy.
For a Jaina monk, to take a bath is an obsession. People who are taking baths every day once or twice are obsessive; they are too concerned about their bodies, body-oriented. The Jaina monk condemns them. The Jaina monk does not take a bath. Jaina monks used to come to see me. It was really a difficult time for me because they stink! But they think they are doing great austerity.
They don’t clean their teeth either – that too is an obsession. Morning, evening and before you go to bed… And a few people will clean their teeth after each meal, so four, five, six times a day. This is obsession! You are madly concerned about your teeth. And all the arguments that you can give are pointless to the Jaina monks because they will say “Look at the animals. Without any cleansing, without any toothpaste, without any toothbrush, their teeth are absolutely clean. Nature takes care, there is no need to worry about it. You are obsessed.”
According to them, you are too concerned about your body odor, about your breath, about your teeth. And this is materialism, and they are spiritual people! But except a Jaina, nobody will think that these are obsessive things.
Remember one thing: obsessions differ from society to society, from country to country, from religion to religion. What really is obsession? Anything that becomes a dominating force upon you, that dominates you, that becomes master of your being. Anything that reduces you to a slave, that’s my definition of an obsession.
Watch it, meditate. Be silently with it, because that is how you will become master again. Silence makes you a master of everything. Don’t fight, and don’t become identified. If you become identified you are mad. If you fight you are mad from the other extreme.

The director of a well-known mental hospital decided to resign his post after many years of service. This decision brought the local press out for an interview.
“Tell us, Doctor, what are your plans? Will you resume private practice?”
“Well, I have given it some thought,” replied the doctor. “I may go back into private practice, but on the other hand I may become a tea-kettle.”

Now, living with mad people for so long, with so many tea-kettles, he has also become impressed with the idea.
If you want to become anything in your life, that is obsession. It is not a question only of becoming a tea-kettle: if you want to become the president of a country or the prime minister, it is the same – other names for becoming tea-kettles! There are people who are obsessed with the idea that they will not rest unless they become the president. Then when they become the president they are at a loss; they don’t know what to do now because all that they know is how to become the president. They have devoted their whole life to a single purpose: how to become the president. Now they have become the president and they are certainly at a loss; they don’t know what to do.
There are people who want to become rich; they become rich. If you persist, you can fulfill any kind of stupidity. Man has immense powers. Yes, you can become a tea-kettle if you persist; nobody can prevent you. But then? Then you are suddenly empty. Then suddenly you find yourself without any goal, lost.
All obsessive people will feel lost when their obsessions are fulfilled. If you become identified with an obsession, sooner or later you will feel lost. If it is fulfilled you will be the loser; if it is not fulfilled, certainly you are the loser.
The other way is to repress it, to throw it into the basement of your being, somewhere deep in the unconsciousness, so you don’t come across it. But it goes on growing there, and it goes on affecting you and your behavior; it goes on pulling your strings from the back. And the enemy is more powerful when it is hidden. You don’t see it, but still you have to follow its dictates – it becomes a dictator.
Both extremes have to be avoided. That’s what Buddha also would have suggested: be exactly in the middle, watchful, choicelessly watchful. Neither choose to be identified nor choose to be repressive. Just see. It is a fact of your psychic life, whatsoever it is. Don’t say good, bad, XYZ – whatsoever it is, it is. Watch it. And see the tremendous power of watchfulness: how it transforms wounds into flowers, how it releases entangled energy knots into great forces, positive forces, nourishing forces.

The fourth question:
Will you please explain the time-lapse between the clocks in the main office and the front gate reception?
Have you heard about the famous Segal’s law? It says: a man with one watch knows what time it is. A man with two watches is never sure.
Watches have no reason to agree with each other; they are not conformist. Watches are revolutionaries! And what are you talking about? You think you have a problem? You should ask me!
I have five clocks in my room, and the whole day I am working out, figuring out, what time it is – and of course I am never right!

The fifth question:
Since you spoke about the difference between a disciple and a devotee, I keep feeling that I am a lousy devotee, yet at the same time it seems that I have never been so devoted and in love with you as now. Could you please say more about being a devotee?
Even to be a lousy devotee is something tremendously important. It is better than to be a very keen student. It is better than to be a very attentive disciple. Even to be a lousy devotee is better than anything else. And as the devotion will grow the lousiness will disappear, because love cannot allow lousiness for long. Love is fire; it burns all that is nonessential, all that is rubbish.
I know it is happening, and I am immensely pleased with you. The lousiness will go. When the sun has started rising in the east, how long can the darkness of the night remain? It is already disappearing. In fact, that’s why you have become aware of it.
We become aware of a few things only when they start leaving us, because when they are there we will not become aware of them; they have always been there. If you are becoming aware of your lousiness, that simply shows it is disappearing, it is leaving, it is going. Some change is happening; that’s why you have become aware of it.
It is said that many people become aware that they were alive only when they are dead. When they are dying, suddenly the idea arises in their mind, “Gosh! So I was alive!” Otherwise it was impossible for them to know that they were alive; some background, some contrast is needed. Death becomes the contrast.
You are becoming aware of some lousiness; it is a good indication. Lousiness is on the go – say good-bye to it. And once love enters the heart, lousiness cannot reside there; it is impossible. Love is never lousy. They can’t exist together. They are just like light and darkness.

The sixth question:
Is it true that some people wake up and find themselves famous?
Yes, it is true. Some people wake up and find themselves famous; others wake up and find themselves late for the morning discourse.

The seventh question:
My previous life with my mother, father, sister and brother was a period filled with unhappiness. Why did I choose to be born into this family?
You have not chosen, because you died unconsciously. How can you choose? If you had chosen, you certainly would not have chosen such a family. It was unconscious. You moved into the womb robotlike. That’s how it happens.
Ordinarily whenever a man dies – except the buddhas – he dies in unconsciousness. He lives in unconsciousness, how can he die in consciousness? Death is the culmination of your whole life. If you have lived in unconsciousness, you will die in unconsciousness. It is the condensed moment: your whole life becomes condensed.
If you have lived in unconsciousness, your death is going to be of tremendously condensed unconsciousness. You will die unconscious; then you don’t choose. How can you choose?
But millions of stupid people are making love all over the world; millions of wombs are ready to receive you. They are also as unconscious as you are. They don’t know why they are making love. They don’t know why a certain man is with a certain woman. They don’t know what is happening. Something takes a grip, something drives them toward certain acts. They are making love not out of awareness, they are making love out of unawareness. And if a couple has exactly the same kind of unawareness as you have, then immediately you will enter that womb. That fits with you.
You say, “My previous life with my mother, father, sister and brother was a period filled with unhappiness.” You must have deserved them! We only get that which we deserve. It is fair too; it is not unjust.
Now you are asking, “Why did I choose to be born into this family?” You could not have done otherwise. And beware! If you don’t become alert you will do the same again. You have done it many times; this is not the first time. You have not chosen the womb, it is not your choice at all.

A wealthy widower and his daughter were traveling to Europe on the S.S. United States. The girl fell overboard. Berman, aged seventy-three, hit the water and saved her. After the two were brought back aboard the ship, the widower threw his arms around Berman.
“You saved my daughter’s life!” he exclaimed. “I am a rich man. I will give you anything. Ask me for whatever you want!”
“Just answer me one question,” said Berman. “Who pushed me?”

It is not your choice. Your whole life must have pushed you into a certain womb. You can choose only when you are aware, and to die in awareness is the greatest experience of life. There is nothing more ecstatic than that.
In life, three things are the most important: birth, love and death. Birth has already happened; now nothing can be done about it. Something can be done about love: you can become a conscious lover, and by becoming a conscious lover you will be preparing for a conscious death, because love and death are very similar. In love also you die in a certain way; your ego dies.
The first experience of death is love. And once you have known the beauty of dying in love you will not be afraid of death at all. In fact, you will wait and you will welcome it when it comes. You will sing a song when it comes. You will dance. Death will not be your enemy but a friend, a great friend, because you knew a small death in love and it was so beautiful. Now it is a big death; it is bound to be a thousandfold more beautiful.
Love prepares a man to die – but only conscious love, because only in conscious love do you die; in unconscious love you don’t die. Unconscious lovers quarrel continuously, fight. They try to dominate each other.
Conscious lovers surrender. In fact, surrender is not to each other; surrender is to the god of love. Both the lovers surrender to some unknown energy in which they dissolve their egos, and they experience small deaths. Each time, each orgasm brings a deeper death. As love deepens, death deepens, and they become prepared for the ultimate death. The day the final death comes is a day of rejoicing. They go dancing into death, singing, their hearts full of the thrill of the adventure.
Then they can choose. Then they can move into a certain womb of their own choice. Now they have eyes – where to go, from what door to enter.
Love is the beginning of consciousness. Death gives you the great experience – but still only ninety-nine percent, one percent is still left. That one percent is fulfilled by conscious birth. A conscious birth is one hundred percent death. The ego simply disappears, totally disappears. Love is one percent death, death is ninety-nine percent death, birth is one hundred percent death. And once you are born consciously, then there is no more love, no more death, no more birth.
This is the goal of all the buddhas: to be free from the wheel of life and death.

The eighth question:
I have been doing meditation for almost forty years, but I am as far away from the goal of god-realization as ever. What should I do?
To make God a goal is to start in the wrong direction. God is not a goal; because if you think in terms of goals God becomes your desire, an object of desire. Then god-realization is nothing but the ultimate glorification of the ego. Hence you have been missing.
And I don’t know what kind of meditation you have been doing for forty years; it must be some wrong kind. It can’t be right mindfulness – what Buddha talks about – it must be some wrong mindfulness. You must be doing some kind of concentration and thinking that this is meditation.
This is one of the greatest fallacies, very much prevalent in the so-called religious circles of the world, particularly in India. Concentration is thought to be meditation, and concentration is not meditation; it is just the opposite of meditation. Concentration is a mind phenomenon. To concentrate upon something means you are focusing your mind on something. It has its own benefits, but those benefits are scientific, not religious. In science, concentration is needed; concentration is a scientific method.
And your schools, colleges, universities, all prepare you for concentration because their preparation is for scientific goals, not for religious experience. Concentration means excluding everything from the mind except the one thing on which you are focusing.
Meditation simply means not focusing on anything at all, not even on God – not focusing at all. Hence it does not exclude anything, it includes all. In meditation you relax, in concentration you become tense. In meditation you are in a deep rest, just alert about whatsoever is happening. A bird starts singing in the woods, a dog barks in the neighborhood, a child starts crying; the traffic noise on the road, delicious smells floating in the air from the kitchen… Your five senses are receiving, alert to all this, everything that is present, that surrounds you.
Concentration can be disturbed because you are trying to focus on one thing; anything can disturb it. You are repeating “Rama, Rama, Rama,” and a dog starts barking. Now you will be angry at the dog. The dog will look like the enemy who always disturbs you; whenever you meditate it starts barking. Must be an agent of the Devil! Or a child starts crying or the wife starts shouting at the kids, or something or other… And thousands of things are going on all around. You cannot stop the whole world because you are doing a foolish repetition: “Rama, Rama, Rama.” You cannot stop the whole world for this. The world will continue.
And who knows? The dog may also be doing his concentration in his own way. Barking may be his Transcendental Meditation! They enjoy barking so much and they feel so exhilarated. Have you observed dogs when they bark, why they bark? Either they bark at the policeman or the postman or the sannyasin. They are against uniforms – a very revolutionary approach! Any uniform, and the dog starts barking. He is never at ease with a uniform; he is always against, suspicious. Or they start barking at the moon. Maybe that is their way of appreciating beauty. And who are you to prevent them? They have as much right to bark as you have.
I have heard…

In an exhibition in Paris all kinds of dogs were exhibited. A couple of Russian dogs had also come and they were talking to the French dogs. The French dog said, “How are things in Russia?”
They said, “Things are beautiful, just beautiful! You can’t imagine how beautiful things are. The food is perfect, medical care is perfect; everything that dogs have always imagined is fulfilled. We have attained utopia.”
The French dogs felt very jealous, but when the time came for the Russian dogs to leave they asked the French dogs, “Can we renounce our Russian citizenship? Can we stay in France?”
The French dog said, “But why? You are enjoying utopia. Why should you want to stay here? For what?”
They said, “For only one reason: once in a while we want to bark, but barking is not allowed there. No freedom of speech! And once in a while we would like to bark, and we are ready to risk everything for it.”

The dog is barking and you are chanting a mantra. He is not disturbing you – he is doing his thing. But you will feel disturbed, not because of his barking but because of your effort to remain focused on one thing. It is because of your effort to focus that you feel distracted.
A meditator is never disturbed, is never distracted. You cannot distract him because he starts watching the distraction too. He is just a watcher; he watches everything, distractions included. How can you distract him? He transforms even distractions, disturbances, into deep silence.
My feeling is you must have been doing some kind of concentration; otherwise, forty years is a long time. You must have followed some stupid pundit, some scholar. You may yourself have become a scholar. Forty years is a long time. You may have read the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali and you may have read other books on meditation – and they all talk about concentration.
Buddha is the first person in the history of humanity who has not talked about concentration but about meditation. And he changed the whole phenomenon of meditation; he gave it a totally new color, a new form, a new life.
You must be reading people who have not experienced anything but who go on writing.

Murphy’s advice will be helpful to you. Murphy says: when all else fails, read the instructions.

I think for forty years you have been doing meditation without reading the instructions. Try to understand what right mindfulness is.
In India people go on doing all kinds of things. They concentrate, they chant mantras, they fast, they torture their bodies, and they hope that through all these masochistic practices they will realize God. As if God is a sadist! As if God wants you to torture yourself; as if he demands that the more you torture yourself, the more worthy you become. God is not a sadist; you need not be a masochist.
I have come across people who think that without long fasting there is no possibility of meditation. Now, fasting has nothing to do with meditation. Fasting will only make you obsessed with food. And there are people who think celibacy will help them into meditation. Meditation brings a kind of celibacy, but not vice versa. Celibacy without meditation is nothing but sexual repression. And your mind will become more and more sexual, so whenever you sit to meditate your mind will become full of fantasies, sexual fantasies.
These two things have been the greatest problems for the so-called meditators: fasting and celibacy. They think these two things are going to help, and they are the greatest disturbances.
Eat in the right proportions. Buddha calls it “the middle way”: neither too much nor too little. He is against fasting, and he knows it through hard experience. For six years he fasted and could not attain to anything. So when he says, “Be in the middle,” he means it. About celibacy also: don’t enforce it upon yourself. It is a by-product of meditation, hence it cannot be enforced before meditation. Be in the middle there too, neither too much indulgence nor too much renunciation. Just keep a balance. A balanced person will be healthier, at ease, at home. And when you are at home, meditation is easier.
What then is meditation? Just sitting silently doing nothing, witnessing whatsoever is happening all around; just watching it with no prejudice, no conclusion, no idea what is wrong and what is right.
Start from ABC. Forget all those forty years. It is good that you have survived those forty years.

A peddler told a friend that the food for his horse was using up all his profits. The friend suggested that he slowly, slowly reduce the horse’s diet by one straw at a time.
Sometime later he ran into his friend again.
“So, Abe, how are things?”
“Terrible!” exclaimed Abe. “I got the horse down to where he was only eating one straw a day and then suddenly he died!”

You have survived – good! Existence is gracious. Otherwise, forty years of the wrong kind of meditation, austerities, can kill anybody. You are a strong man – you have survived.
And, if you have come here, please put aside all your knowledge. It has not worked, now don’t let it disturb you. Put it aside completely. Start afresh with me. Still there is hope, there is always hope.
My meditation is simple; it does not require any complex practices. It is very simple. It is singing, it is dancing. It is sitting silently. It is being at ease with existence. It is accepting existence as your home.
Forget about god-realization. By your thinking you will never realize godliness. Simply enjoy life, celebrate life. And one day, when the celebration reaches to its peak, suddenly the curtain disappears from your eyes and the whole existence is nothing but divine. There is no God, but the whole existence is full of godliness. That is god-realization, that is nirvana.

The ninth question:
Any marks for choiceless unawareness?
Anand Buddha, even if you are aware of that, that will do. Are you aware of choiceless unawareness? That will destroy that choiceless unawareness. Make it an object of awareness and it will disappear, evaporate.
And no marks can be given for it, because if marks have to be given for it then everybody will succeed in getting marks – everybody, because everybody is living it.

A huge bully sauntered into the dimly lit saloon. “Is there anybody here called Kilroy?” he snarled. Nobody answered. Again he sneered, “Is there anybody here called Kilroy?”
There was a moment of silence and then a little Irishman stepped forward. “I am Kilroy,” he said.
The tough guy picked him up and threw him across the bar. Then he punched him in the jaw, kicked him, slapped him around and walked out.
About fifteen minutes later the little fellow came to. “Boy, didn’t I fool him,” he said. “I ain’t Kilroy!”

A pretty young girl stretched out on the psychiatrist’s couch. “I just can’t help myself, Doctor. No matter how hard I try to resist, I bring five or six men with me into my bedroom every night. Last night there were ten. I just feel so miserable, I don’t know what to do.”
In understanding tones the doctor rumbled, “Yes, I know, I know, my dear.”
“Ah!” the surprised girl exclaimed. “Were you there last night too?”

People are living in unconsciousness, doing all kinds of things in unconsciousness. Everybody is an unconscious robot. We are just pretending that we are conscious; we are not conscious.
The moment you become conscious, all unconscious actions disappear from your life. Your life starts moving in a new dimension. Your each act comes out of inner clarity; your each response is virtuous, is virtue. To live unconsciously is to live in sin; to live consciously is to be virtuous, is to be religious. And to live in total awareness is to be a buddha, is to be a christ.
It will be good if we start calling Christ “Joshua the Buddha.” His real name was Joshua; from Joshua has come Jesus. And christ has become ugly because of the Christian church; the word has lost its beauty. It will be good if we change it, if we start calling him Joshua the Buddha – because they are all buddhas, they are all awakened people. They live through inner light. You only grope in inner darkness.
Anand Buddha, I have given you the name Buddha. If you feel you are living in choiceless unawareness, make it a point to be aware of it.

A thief asked a great Buddhist mystic, Nagarjuna, “Can I meditate and still remain a thief?”
Nagarjuna said, “Yes. Just do one thing: while you are stealing remain alert, aware, conscious.”
The thief was very happy. He said, “You are the right master! I have gone to many people, and they all say, ‘First stop stealing, then you can be a meditator.’”
Nagarjuna said, “Those are not masters – they must be ex-thieves. I am a master. I am concerned with meditation, not with other things. What you do is your business; whether you steal or donate, that is your business. My business is to tell you to be alert, and do whatsoever you want to do.”
Of course the thief was very happy – happy because now he could have both worlds.
But after fifteen days he came back, fell at the feet of Nagarjuna, and he said, “You are a very sly fellow! You destroyed my whole profession – because if I try to be alert I cannot steal; my hands simply won’t move. Last night I entered the king’s palace; this was such an opportunity that it happens only once in a lifetime. It was very difficult to enter – my whole life I have tried – but it must be because of your blessings: last light I entered, and all the guards were fast asleep. I opened the treasure and such precious diamonds I have never seen in my life! I could have become the richest man, and everything was within my grasp, but you were standing between me and the treasure. You were telling me, ‘Be aware!’ You were shouting at me, ‘Be aware!’ And if I tried awareness, those precious stones looked just like stones, not worth bothering about. If I forgot about awareness, they were again precious stones, tremendously valuable.
“It changed many times. I became aware and they were ordinary stones; I became unaware and they were great riches. But finally you were victorious. I have come back to you. Now initiate me into sannyas.”

Nagarjuna must have been a man like me; otherwise, ordinary teachers can’t accept a thief.
Sometimes a drunkard comes to me and he says, “I am a drunkard. Can I also be a sannyasin?” I say, “Don’t be bothered about small things. Sannyas will do! First be a sannyasin, then we will see.”
He seems to be puzzled, he can’t understand. But once he becomes a sannyasin, things start changing. Sooner or later he comes and reports: “You did the trick. I cannot drink anymore; it has become more and more impossible. It is so repulsive, disgusting.”
One drunkard told me – he became a sannyasin just a few months ago – he said, “It has become so difficult. Now I know the strategy and the trick behind these orange clothes, because when I go to the pub people start touching my feet! They say, ‘Swamiji, this is a pub! You must have come thinking it is some other place.’ And I say, ‘Yes – is this a pub?’ And I have to turn back! I can’t even go in.” He was really angry at me; he said, “I can’t even go to the movie, because standing in the queue people start touching my feet, and they say, ‘Swamiji, what are you doing here?’ And I have to escape.”
Just a small bit of awareness and it will affect your whole life. Just a small bit of awareness and your total life as you have lived up to now will be shattered, will collapse, and a new life will start arising around that small center of awareness.

The tenth question:
I just had a general anesthetic. The space was so familiar – like being in lecture or darshan. Is this what you are doing – anesthetizing us so that you can operate?
I don’t use anesthesia, but I have my own ways of making you unconscious so that I can operate.
In the first place, you are already unconscious enough; sometimes you have just a little bit of flickering consciousness. I have to prevent that. No anesthesia is needed for that.

A man who had just undergone a very complicated operation kept complaining about a bump on his head and a terrible headache. Since his operation had been an intestinal one, there was no earthly reason why he should be complaining of a headache. Finally his nurse, fearing that the man might be suffering from some postoperative shock, spoke to the doctor about it.
“Don’t worry about a thing, nurse,” the doctor assured her. “He really does have a bump on his head. About halfway through the operation we ran out of anesthetic.”

And I don’t have any anesthesia with me so I go on using the same method – just a good hammering on the head! Yes, for a few days you will have a little headache and a bump! You are not conscious, so you don’t need anesthesia – just a little hammering and you fall flat! Then any operation can be done on you. And this operation is not physical; this surgery is spiritual. Some weeds from your spirit have to be taken out, uprooted. And that’s what is happening in the talks, in the evening darshan.
So I can perfectly understand your experience: that in anesthesia you felt the same space, “…like being in lecture or darshan.” Being here with me you lose track of your ego. Being here with me you lose track of your mind. You enter a vast space, a great freedom, a tremendous silence, a deep ecstasy; hence only those who are in deep love with me will be benefited. Those who come as outsiders, spectators, yes, they will gather a few words and they will think they have understood the point. They have not understood the point. Unless you start feeling this space that I am, you have not understood – you cannot.
My message is not in the words that I use but in the silence from where those words come. My message is not verbal, philosophical. It is a communion, a deep communion of the hearts, a meeting, a merger, an orgasmic experience. It is spiritual orgasm.

The last question:
I have lived my whole life as a celibate, but I still suffer from bad sexual thoughts. Why?
If you had not suffered, that would have been a miracle! If you have tried to live the life of a celibate, what else can you expect?
And why do you call sexual thoughts bad? They are neutral, neither good nor bad. Sexual thoughts are sexual thoughts. Why bring these moral values in? Because of these moral values you remain in a constant fight, in an inner war, a civil war. You go on fighting with your own energy – the sexual energy – and that is the only energy you have. There is no other energy; it is the only energy, which has to be transformed into spirituality. This same sexual energy, which you are calling bad, is going to become a great perfume in you.
But trying to live a celibate life without meditation is dangerous. It keeps you obsessed. It keeps you continuously in sexual fantasies. And then naturally you call it bad, because twenty-four hours living with the same ideas is a constant torture.

“Police?” came the voice on the phone. “I want to report a burglar trapped in an old maid’s bedroom!”
After ascertaining the address, the police sergeant asked who was calling.
“This,” cried the frantic voice, “is the burglar!”

After rushing into a drugstore, the nervous young man was obviously embarrassed when a prim, middle-aged woman asked if she could serve him.
“No-no,” he stammered, “I would rather see the druggist.”
“I am the druggist,” she responded cheerfully. “What can I do for you?”
“Oh… Well, uh, it is nothing important,” he said, and turned to leave.
“Young man,” said the woman, “my sister and I have been running this drugstore for nearly thirty years. There is nothing you can tell us that will embarrass us.”
“Well, all right,” he said. “I have this awful sexual hunger that nothing will appease. No matter how many times I make love, I still want to make love again. Is there anything you can give me for it?”
“Just a moment,” said the little lady. “I will have to discuss this with my sister.”
A few minutes later she returned. “The best we can offer,” she said, “is two hundred dollars a week and a half-interest in the business.”

Enough for today.

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