The Hidden Splendor 03

Third Discourse from the series of 27 discourses - The Hidden Splendor by Osho.
You can listen, download or read all of these discourses on oshoworld.com.

You took my heart and now it is too late; I am enjoying aloneness and laziness so much that sometimes I think there must be something wrong with me. I feel I am at the beginning of a new journey, and there is a question that keeps on coming up: What is the difference between being a watcher, and the feeling of “I am not that”?
It is not true that I have taken your heart. You have given it to me. If I had taken it, it would not be too late; because you have given it to me, it is certainly too late! The master takes nothing from the disciple. The disciple gives everything, including himself. The master gives an opportunity for you to give. And it is a joy and a bliss to give your heart. Nothing can be a more precious present, and there is no other way to show your gratitude. But in any case, your heart is gone!
You say, “I am enjoying aloneness and laziness so much that sometimes I think there must be something wrong with me.” There is. Enjoying aloneness is perfectly right, but enjoying laziness is not right. Laziness is a negative state. One should be overflowing with energy. One should be at ease, but not lazy. One should be relaxed, but not lazy.
Laziness and easiness look so alike that it is very easy to misunderstand which is which. If you are enjoying your aloneness, it cannot be laziness because laziness always feels a certain guilt, a certain feeling: “I am doing something that I should not be doing, I am not participating in existence.” Laziness means you have dropped out of the creativity of the universe – you are standing aside while the universe goes on creating day in, day out.
You are misunderstanding laziness for easiness. My whole teaching is: take everything with absolute relaxation, with ease. Whether you are doing something or not is not the point. You must be overflowing with energy even when you are not doing anything. These trees are not doing anything, but they are overflowing with energy. You can see that in their flowers, in their colors, in their greenery, in their freshness, in their absolute naked beauty in the sunlight, in the dark night under the stars.
Life is not a tension anywhere except in the mind of humanity. To take life with ease, without any tension, without any hurry – that is not laziness, it is easiness.

I am reminded of one of the very learned scholars of Bengal. His name was Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar. He was going to be awarded the highest scholarship that the British Empire had in India.
But he used to live in a very simple way, and his friends forced him – “It won’t look right standing before the viceroy in the Parliament House, in front of all the members of the parliament and all the other dignitaries. We will make a beautiful dress for you, we will bring good shoes for you.” He was reluctant, but they were insistent, so finally he agreed.
But there was uneasiness in his mind; in his heart, there was not total acceptance. To change your style of life just because you are going to receive an award from the hands of the viceroy looked to him like a compromise. It was against his pride.
It was going to happen the next day, and he was walking on the sea beach with a disturbed mind: whether to follow the advice of his friends or just to go the way he always lives?
At that very moment he saw a man come running. Just in front of him, a very rich Mohammedan was also walking on the beach. The man said to the rich man – which Vidyasagar heard; he was just four feet behind him – “What are you doing here? Your palace is on fire!”
The rich man said, “Okay,” and he continued to walk with the same ease, as if nothing had happened.
The man who had brought the news said, “Have you heard it or not? Your palace is on fire, everything is burning and there seems to be no way to save anything.”
He said, “I have heard; now you go and do whatsoever you can. But first I will finish my evening walk, and then I will come.”
Vidyasagar could not believe it. His whole house was on fire – and he had the most beautiful palace, rich, with many antiques. He was a lover of paintings and statues, and his palace was almost like a museum. People used to come to see it, to visit it. Just to go around inside his palace used to take hours because there were so many art treasures to be seen. Everything is on fire, and the man says that he will first finish his evening walk!
He continued at the same pace. There was no hurry, there was no tension. Vidyasagar could not believe his own eyes, and the thought arose in him: here is a man who knows how to live in utter ease. Whatever happens in the world is not going to change him even a little bit. And here I am – just for an award from the viceroy, I am going to change my whole lifestyle. They are going to cut my hair, shape it, cut my beard and shape it, and I have agreed! No, I am going to be just as I am.”
He thanked the rich man. “You have saved me.”
The rich man said, “I don’t understand – how have I saved you?”
Vidyasagar explained, “I was going to change my whole dress, shave my beard and cut my hair – to be respectable, to look rich, just to receive an award. And your house… I have been many times to your palace. Your whole life’s collection of great paintings and other art pieces are on fire, and you are not disturbed at all.
“That’s why I say you have saved me: I am going tomorrow just the way I am. You have taught me the greatest lesson of my life: that one can take everything easily, one just needs a certain acceptance that whatever is happening is happening, and whatever people can do they are doing. What more can I do?”
The man completed his evening walk, and then he went toward his home, but with the same pace. Vidyasagar followed him just to see what else would happen. There was a big crowd; almost everything was burning. All their efforts had failed.
The rich man also stood in the crowd, just as others were standing. Others were very tense, in great anxiety, in a great hurry – what to do? how to save it? – and he was standing there, just a witness, as if it were somebody else’s house and somebody else’s art collection that was burning.

This is not laziness. This is a tremendous centering of being, such a groundedness that you can take everything at ease. There is no need to think: “…there must be something wrong with me.” Just change that word laziness and everything is right with you. Words mean much.
Just a few days ago, I was informed that in the Soviet Union there are many Mohammedan countries. And religion is banned by the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. Each child is taught atheism from the very beginning. So the Mohammedans have been in trouble – what to do?
The month of Ramadan comes, when they fast for thirty days during the day and eat at night. To do it will be a sure indication that you are acting against the government – you are still following a religion. They have simply changed the name; they call it “the month of dieting,” and now there is no problem. Dieting is not prohibited; fasting is prohibited.
A Mohammedan is expected by his religion to pray five times a day. And his prayer is such that it looks like an exercise: he bows down, gets up, bows down, touches the earth, gets up again, and inside he is reciting his mantra. Now they are still doing it; now they call it “exercise.” It keeps your body and mind fit – you cannot talk about the soul, just the mind and body. In the Soviet Union the soul does not exist, it is against the policy of the government, but nobody can prevent you from doing exercises. Even if you do them five times a day, it is not a criminal act, and it is not religious. It is good for the body and for the mind.
Just changing words: you will see that every word has a certain connotation with it. Laziness has a very negative, condemnatory connotation. But to be at ease is a beautiful phenomenon – relaxed, at home, centered, without any tension and without any anguish. Just because of that word laziness the idea is arising in you: “…there must be something wrong with me.” Nothing is wrong with you.
“I feel that I am at the beginning of a new journey and there is a question that keeps on coming up: what is the difference between being a watcher and the feeling, ‘I am not that’?” The difference is great, but very subtle. When you say, “I am not that,” you are not a watcher in that moment. These are the two alternatives: “I am that” – a thought passes in your mind and you say, “I am that.” This is a thought. Or you say, “I am not that.” That too is a thought. Just because it is negative makes no difference. But there is a watcher beyond both: “I am that” and “I am not that” – both are watched by a consciousness which is beyond.
The watcher is simply a mirror. It does not say anything, it simply reflects. The watcher knows no language, knows no concepts. It is pure awareness, it is just seeing. Just think of a newly born baby. He will also see the light in the room, the beautiful colors on the walls. He will also see the doctor, the nurses, the father, but he cannot say, “This is light, this is a beautiful color, this is red, this is green, this is the doctor, this is the nurse, this is my dad.” But he is seeing all. He is purely a watcher.
He cannot name anything, he cannot verbalize anything. How can he say, “This is red”? He has never known it before, and nobody has told him that it is red. How can he think that it is light? He knows nothing about light or darkness. How can he make a difference between the doctor and the father, and how can he make any difference between men and women? These differences have to be learned.
But his eyes are open, and he has the freshest eyes that he will ever have in his life, the best clarity. They are just mirrors, reflecting everything that is around. There is no word, no explanation, no language, no mind. The same is the situation of the watcher. You again become a newly born child.
At the innermost core of your being you are always a watcher.
So you can say, “I am not that” – the watcher is lost. You have come back to the mind. Only mind speaks in you. Except mind, nothing speaks in you. Your heart does not speak, your being does not speak. Only the mind speaks. Your heart feels, your being knows, but there is nothing to be said.
But questions will go on coming. In the mind, questions arise just as new leaves come out of trees. One question disappears, another question comes up. Mind is a factory for producing questions. If no question arises, then the question will be, “What is happening? No question is arising, something must be wrong.”
You have to be aware that mind is the question. What form it takes is immaterial. If you go behind the question you will be moving on the path of philosophy. You will find answers, and each answer will bring ten more questions, and this will go on spreading. The philosophical mind never comes to any conclusion. Its whole life it thinks – question after question – and every time it finds some answer. But the moment the answer arises, it brings more questions with it. There is no end to questioning.
This is the place where philosophy and authentic mysticism take separate paths. Philosophy goes behind questions, answers, and never reaches any conclusion. Mysticism simply drops the mind because it is nothing but a question-creating mechanism, and moves into silence. And the most amazing thing in life is then, when there is no question, you have found the answer.
There may be thousands of questions, but there is only one answer, and that answer is your awareness. It is not in the form of an answer, it is in the form of an experience: suddenly a great silence descends upon you. Everything becomes calm and quiet. Without any words, without any knowledge, there is knowing, knowing that you have arrived home, that now there is nowhere to go.
If you look at the history of man: from the very primitive man, the same questions have been asked. Answers have become more and more sophisticated, but no answer destroys the question. The question has an immense capacity to survive all answers: it comes back again in a new form.
You ask who created the world. Your organized religions say God created the world, and the mind immediately asks, “Who created God?” – the answer is nullified.
If somebody says, “Number one god created the universe; number two god created number one god; number three god created number two god…” that will be ludicrous, because finally the last god will have the same question: Who created him? The question has an immense capacity to survive all your answers, howsoever sophisticated.
The path of the mystic is totally different from the path of the philosopher. The mystic does not try to find the answers for the questions. He simply understands one thing: that until he goes beyond mind, questions will continue; no answer can help. But the moment you are beyond the mind, all questions disappear, and in that disappearance you have found the answer – without words, without language, you have become a knower. You have become knowing itself, not knowledge. This state is the state of the watcher.
So don’t say, “I am not that.” There are schools which teach that – when you see something in the mind go on saying, “I am not that. I am not the body, I am not the mind, I am not the heart; I am not this, I am not that.” But the watcher is beyond all your negations, just as it is beyond all your positive assertions.
Remain silent; don’t say anything. If some thought floats in the mind, let it float, the way you allow a cloud to float in the sky – you don’t start shouting, “I am not that.” Your mind is also a sky, a screen. Things pass. You simply watch.

As Adam wandered in the Garden of Eden he noticed two birds in the tree. They were snuggled up together, billing and cooing. Adam called to the Lord, “What are the two birds doing in the tree?”
The Lord said, “They are making love, Adam.”
A little while later he wandered into the fields and saw a bull and cow going at it. He called to the Lord, “Lord, what is going on with that bull and cow?”
The Lord said, “They are making love, Adam.”
Adam asked, “How come I don’t have anyone to make love with?”
So the Lord said, “We will change that. When you awake tomorrow morning things will be different.”
So Adam lay down beneath the olive tree and fell asleep. When he awoke, there was Eve next to him. Adam jumped up, grabbed her hand, and said, “Come with me. Let’s go into the bushes.” And so they went. But a few moments later Adam stumbled out, looking very dejected, and called to the Lord, “Lord, what is a headache?”

You cannot end questions. Something or other is going to be there – if nothing else, then a headache. Since Adam asked this – “What is a headache?” – the Lord has disappeared, saying, “This idiot is not going to allow me even to rest. He will be coming again and again – ‘Lord, what is this? Lord, what is that?’” Since then, nobody has known where the Lord is!
Don’t create an unnecessary headache for yourself. Just be a silent, relaxed watcher. The headache will disappear – and the head too! And you will find such a freedom and such a spaciousness, as if the whole sky has become available to you.

Someone once told me the saying: “All that you put into the lives of others comes back into your own.” It has been with me ever since, and I feel it to be true. Can you please talk about this? It keeps coming up a lot for me.
The saying is true. All that you put into the lives of others comes back into your own, for the simple reason that the other is not so “other” as you think. No man is an island; we are all joined together.
On the surface both my hands seem to be separate. But if I hit my right hand with the left hand, do you think the pain is going to be just confined to the right hand? The left hand is not separate. If the right hand suffers, sooner or later the left hand is going to suffer too. It is not possible to hurt someone and remain unhurt, because the other is not as other as he appears. Deep down in the roots we are one. So when you slap somebody’s face, you are slapping your own face.
When people like Jesus say, “Love your enemy just as you love yourself,” they are not just teaching ordinary morality. They are stating a very fundamental truth: the enemy is also part of you, as you are part of the enemy. Love the enemy as you love yourself.

Gautam Buddha used to say to his disciples, “After each meditation, when you are feeling blissful, full of joy, peace, and silence, shower and share your silence, your peace, your blissfulness with the whole of existence – with men, with women, with trees, with animals, with birds – with all that is, share it.
“It is not a question whether someone deserves it or not. The more you share it, the more you will get it. The farther your blessings reach, more and more blessings will shower on you from all directions. Existence always gives you back more than you have given to it.”
One man who was a very great admirer of Gautam Buddha raised his hand and said, “There is one question. I can share my blessings, my joy, with the whole existence. Please just allow me one exception: I cannot share with my neighbor. He is so disgusting – the very idea of sharing my joy with him makes me sick.” He said, “Just one exception I am asking. I am ready to share with all the animals, all the insects, all the birds, all the trees, everything – just that one neighbor who is so nasty. You don’t know about it; otherwise you yourself would have said, ‘You can have a few exceptions.’”
Buddha said to the man, “You don’t understand what I am saying. First you have to share your joy with your neighbor; only then you will be able to share your joy with the whole of existence. If even your neighbor is not your neighbor, then how can the birds and the animals and the trees be your friends and your neighbors? So you first practice just that exception – forget about the whole universe. If you can succeed in sharing your joy with your neighbor, there is no problem. You are already ready to share your joy with everybody else.”

Perhaps in the same situation, Jesus may also have said, “Love your neighbor just as you love yourself.” It looks very strange that he makes these two statements: “Love your enemy just as yourself,” and “Love your neighbor just as yourself.” George Bernard Shaw joked about it and said, “It is because they are not two persons; they are the same person, the enemy and the neighbor. There is no need to make two statements. One statement will do because they are not separate persons.”
This is the essential of all religiousness: that we should be able to share unconditionally all that grows in our being, all the flowers and all the fragrance. To be miserly about it is dangerous. In the ordinary world, the economics is that if you give something to someone, that much less will be with you, and if you share everything with everybody, you will be a beggar. But in the higher economics of life, just the opposite law functions: if you hold things to yourself, you will destroy them. They are delicate. They need freedom. They need wings and they need to be allowed to go into the sky.
The more you give your love, your compassion, your blessing, your joy, your ecstasy, the more you will find that the whole existence has become so generous to you that streams of love and joy are running toward you from all directions. Once you have known the secret – that by giving you don’t lose, but you get more, a thousandfold more – your whole life structure goes through a transformation.
But even in their so-called religious and spiritual life, people are as miserly as they are in the ordinary life. They don’t know that the laws of ordinary life are not applicable to the higher dimensions of being.
A famous story about a Zen nun…

She had a beautiful golden buddha, a very artistic, aesthetic statue of Buddha, made of pure gold. The nun used to carry the buddha wherever she went. Buddhist monks and nuns have to go on moving for eight months of the year, except the four months of rain. So from one temple, from one monastery to another…
She was staying in one of the temples of China – she had gone to travel to Chinese temples and monasteries and that temple has ten thousand statues of Buddha. It is a unique temple in the whole world. Ten thousand statues: almost the whole mountain has been cut into statues and made into a temple; it must have taken centuries to build it. She was staying there.
This had been her constant worry: every morning when she worships her golden buddha, she puts flowers, sweets, burns incense – but you cannot depend upon the wind, upon the breeze. The fragrance arising out of the burning incense may not reach the golden buddha’s nose, it may move in any direction.
In that temple there were ten thousand other buddhas, and the fragrance was going to other buddhas’ noses. This was intolerable; this was too much. She was feeling very hurt, that her own poor buddha is not getting any incense, and all these vagabonds… “And my buddha is golden and they are just stones. And after all my buddha is my buddha.”
This is how the mind functions: it is so possessive, it cannot even see that they are all statues of the same man. Which nose is getting the incense does not matter – it is reaching the Buddha. But “my buddha” – the old possessive mind continues.
So she devised a small method: she brought a bamboo, a hollow bamboo, and cut it into a small piece. She would burn the incense, and put the bamboo on top of it. One side will take the incense smoke in, and the other side she will put on the nose of her golden buddha – almost like making him smoke! But that created a problem: her buddha’s nose became black. That disturbed her even more.
She asked the high priest of the temple, “What should I do? My poor buddha’s nose has become black.”
He asked, “But how did it happen?”
She said, “I feel very embarrassed to say, it is my own doing.” And then she explained the whole thing.
The priest laughed. He said, “All these are buddhas here. One buddha, ten thousand buddhas – to whom it reaches does not matter. You should not be so miserly, so possessive. Buddha cannot be yours and cannot be mine. The nose of the buddha has become black because of your possessiveness.”
The priest said to her, “We are making each other’s faces black because of our possessiveness. If we could give without even thinking to whom it reaches… Because to whomever it reaches, is part of the same existence as we are part of – it reaches to us.”

Don’t go on thinking about it as a proverb that is true. You are saying, “It keeps coming up a lot for me.” It is not something to contemplate; it is something to do and to experience. Just make somebody joyful and see – your heart immediately becomes light. Let somebody laugh, and something of the laughter enters in you, becomes part of you. Let somebody be blissful, help somebody to enjoy life more totally, and the reward is immediate. Existence is always cash. It does not depend on checks, drafts – it is always cash. Here, you do something and immediately is the reward or the punishment. Rather than thinking about it, whether it is true or not, try it. It is one of the truest axioms for transforming your life.
In giving small things, people think of a thousand things. Just look at the beggars. If you are alone, moving on the road, the beggar will not ask you for anything because he knows you are alone; your respectability is not at risk. He will catch hold of you in the marketplace, where you cannot refuse. If you refuse, everybody will say, “Don’t be so unkind, don’t be so cruel.”
Even the beggar knows the psychology: if the man is alone, he will give him a lesson, rather than giving him something: “You seem to be young, you seem to be healthy. You should be working – not begging.”
The same man in the society will immediately give, and give more. He will feel resentful, but he wants to impress the people around him that he is a very generous man, and the beggar knows. The beggar also knows that he has befooled you: you have not given to him or to his poverty, you have given to your respectability, to your generosity.
People say, “We will give only to worthy people, to deserving people.” These are strategies for not giving. Otherwise who is unworthy? If existence accepts him, and the sun does not deny him light, and the moon does not deny him its beauty, and the roses do not deny him their fragrance… If the existence accepts him, who are you to think whether he is worthy or unworthy?
His being alive is enough proof that existence accepts him as he is.
Any conditional giving is not a giving at all. Every giving has to be unconditional. And every giving has not to ask even gratitude in response. On the contrary, the giver should feel grateful that his gift has not been refused. Then giving becomes a tremendous ecstasy. This is the way your heart grows, how your consciousness expands, how your darkness disappears, how you become more and more light, closer and closer to the divine.
Anything that appeals to you, don’t let it remain in the mind; let it come into your actions. Only the action will give you the proof whether it is right or wrong. Arguments can prove what is wrong as right, what is right as wrong.

In Greece, before Socrates, there used to be a great school of thinkers called Sophists. They were strange people. Their ideology was that there is nothing true, nothing untrue, nothing good, nothing bad – it all depends how sharp is your argument. Sophistry was the art of argumentation.
These Sophists used to move from town to town in Greece to teach people the art of argumentation. And they were so certain that they used to take half of their fee before, in advance, and they would take the other half after they won your first argument with someone.
Zeno, one of the very sharpest minds the world has known, went to be a disciple in the school of Sophists. He deposited half of the fee and said, “The other half I will never give.”
The master said, “You will have to give the other half – because how are you going to find out whether you have become really argumentative or not?”
He said, “I am not going to argue with anybody. But that is not a question right now. First teach me.”
Two years of teaching and the master could see that Zeno was a genius, far ahead of the master himself. His teaching was complete, and the master said, “Now you can go and argue with someone. Challenge anybody, and your victory is sure.”
But Zeno said, “I am not going to argue with anybody. Even if somebody says in the day that it is night, I will say, ‘Yes, it is night.’ I am not going to argue because if I win in any argument, then I have to pay the other half of the fee to you. That I am not going to do.”
Almost a year passed and he did not argue with anyone. The master even sent many people to provoke him to argumentation, but he would always be willing to accept whatever others said. They would say, “God exists” and he said, “Yes, God exists.” They would say, “God does not exist” and he said, “God does not exist, I am in absolute agreement with you. The question of argument does not arise.”
Finally the master, who himself was a great arguer, thought of a strategy: he should bring him to the court, sue him, because he had not paid half of his fee. His idea was, “If I win, he will have to pay the fee. If he wins, then outside the court I will say, ‘Now give me my fee; you have won your first argument.’”
But Zeno was also his disciple. He thought, “If he wins, I will tell the court that this was the agreement, that when I won my first argument, then I would pay him. Now I have lost my first argument: according to our agreement he has won the case, but I cannot give him the fee.”
“And if by chance I win, I know that outside the court he will say, ‘Give me the fee,’ and I will say, ‘Come inside the court because I cannot go against the law of the country. It will be a contempt of the court; the court has given me victory.’”
And that very thing happened. Zeno argued very well. The master wanted him to win, so he argued in such a way that Zeno would win. The court decided that Zeno was victorious.
Outside the court the master said, “Now give me my fee.”
Zeno said, “Then come inside the court: I will give you the fee if the judge says that I have failed in arguing. I cannot go against the court – that would be a criminal act, a contempt of the court.” And Zeno never paid the half fee.
Zeno himself became a great teacher in his own right, but he used to take the full fee in advance! He said, “I cannot commit the same mistake my master committed.”

Don’t make life a question of argumentation, or truth a question of arguments, or love a question of arguments, or joy a question of arguments. Live, experience – because that is the only way to know. Argument is not the way to know. Knowing is only through experiencing.

A nun dies and goes to heaven. St. Peter says to her, “I’m sure you have led a virtuous life, Sister, but before I can let you into heaven, you must answer one question. The question is: What were Eve’s first words to Adam?”
“Boy,” says the nun, “that’s a hard one.”
“That’s right!” says St. Peter.

Don’t make life a question-answer game. Make it more authentic, and anything that feels right to you, try to experiment with it. There are millions of people who know what is right, millions of people who know what is good, millions of people who know what has to be done. But they just know, they never try to transform their knowing into action, into actuality.
Unless your knowledge becomes your actual experience, it is simply a burden and not a freedom. It keeps you loaded with good thoughts, but good thoughts are useless. Unless they grow within you, have roots in your heart, are part of your being, they are simply wasting your time and your life.
Don’t be like the crowd that exists on the earth. They all have beautiful theories, beautiful dogmas, great philosophies, magnificent theologies, but all in their heads. They have not tasted anything, and they will die without actually knowing anything. Their whole lives will be simply a long desert where nothing grows, where nothing happens, where nothing is realized.
And I say unto you: unless God is realized, your life has been a wastage. That is your capacity, your potential: the realization of the divineness of existence. Just a little taste and your whole life will become full of such glory, such ecstasy, such splendor that you cannot even dream about it.

In nature, spring comes, summer follows, and then autumn and winter. Each time they are different, never the same; but the phenomenon of the spring, summer, autumn, and winter is always coming regularly. The sun always rises in the morning. Osho, are there also basic phenomena in the world of truth which occur regularly? If so, can you please talk about them?
It is true about nature: “Spring comes, summer follows, and then autumn and winter. Each time they are different, never the same; but the phenomenon of the spring, summer, autumn, and winter is always coming regularly. The sun always rises in the morning. Osho, are there also basic phenomena in the world of truth which occur regularly?”
No. Nature is autonomous, more mechanical than the world of consciousness. In nature there is no freedom, no choice. The sun cannot say, “I am going for a few days’ holiday.” Everything has to move absolutely mechanically. That’s why the sun goes on rising from the east. Otherwise, in millions of years, it must have become tired and bored, and may have thought sometimes to rise from the west, or from the south, or from the north – or not to rise at all. Nature is following a fixed routine. Consciousness is, intrinsically, freedom, so in the world of consciousness there is no regularity.
Sometimes it happens at one point of history that there are a dozen enlightened people. For example, it happened at the time of Gautam Buddha. Just at the same time there was Lao Tzu in China, and Chuang Tzu and Lieh Tzu; in Greece, there were Socrates, Pythagoras, Heraclitus; in India, Mahavira and eight other teachers of the same status. And perhaps in other countries… In Iran there was Zarathustra.
That was twenty-five centuries ago. Suddenly a tremendous spring came – so many enlightened people, such a cool breeze, such calmness, such consciousness. The earth was so fragrant that in India we called that age “the golden age.” Never before or after has man reached such a peak of consciousness. And then for centuries it was just a dark night.
Then in the Middle Ages, again there was an explosion: Kabir, Dadu, Nanak, Farid, Mansoor, Jalaluddin Rumi, and many others in China and Japan of the same quality of enlightenment. And then again the spring did not come. There seems to be no regularity.
On the contrary, there seems to be one thing: that whenever there is one enlightened person, then many peoples’ consciousness is triggered. One person’s enlightenment becomes evidence and proof of your hidden splendor, of which you were not aware. That man’s splendor makes you confident about yourself – because you are also a human being, belonging to the same state of consciousness. He has discovered himself, while you have remained asleep. He has become awakened, while you have not been alert that it is dawn and time to wake up.
One thing is certain: whenever one person is there, then in many places, many people – perhaps in faraway places; it does not matter whether those people are close to that person – wherever there are boundary cases, people who are just lightly asleep, a small shaking and they will wake up. So whenever there is one enlightened person, many people around the world start waking up. He triggers a process in the whole universe.
But there is no regularity. It is not that in every century there will be so many people enlightened, or every year there will come a season when people will become enlightened. There is no season, no spring for enlightenment. One can become enlightened any time.
But if somebody is already enlightened, your enlightenment becomes very easy. He has already broken the ice, he has already made a footpath. All that you need is a little courage to go alone, leaving the crowd behind. The crowd is fast asleep, and I think it will remain asleep forever. Sleep is comfortable, dreams are beautiful – why bother to be awake? Because with awakening comes responsibility, with awakening comes freedom. With awakening, suddenly you find yourself alone with the whole world condemning you.
An actual case happened in the beginning of this century…

In Mexico, in a faraway part, in the mountains, there lived a small tribe of three hundred people who were all blind. It was very strange. Not a single person had eyes; all were blind.
A young scientist heard about the tribe and went there to find out the reason. And then he was even more surprised, because every child was born with eyes – not blind – but within three or four months’ time, he would become blind.
The young scientist discovered that there was a fly in that forest, and its bite was making young children blind, and that fly was so common that it was almost impossible to keep your eyesight. But the poison of that fly was able to make a person blind only before he was six months of age. After that he was strong enough, and the fly could not affect his eyes, but six months were enough.
So, for six months some babies remained with sight – a few for five months, a few for one month, a few for a few days – but by the sixth month, almost all the babies went blind. The scientist had discovered the fly, he had found the poison, and while he was discovering all of this, he was trying to make people understand that they were blind. They all laughed – because he was such a minority, one man, and they were three hundred, and they all said, “You are hallucinating, you are dreaming. Eyes don’t exist.”
While he was working with the tribe, he fell in love with a blind girl. She was so beautiful, but neither she was aware of her beauty, nor anybody else was aware of her beauty. Although she was blind, still the young man fell in love with her, and he proposed to marry her. But the society refused.
The society said, “We can allow our daughter to be married to you if you become blind, just as we are blind. We will have to take your eyes out. So you can think it over, and tomorrow you can tell us your decision.”
The young man was very much in love with the girl, but still he thought, “This is a strange bargain, to become blind – because these eyes are what has made me aware of her beauty. Losing these eyes, it does not matter whether she is beautiful or not. And I have come here to convince these people that their eyes can be cured because they were born with sight. Just a certain poison has destroyed their vision; perhaps we can find some antidote and they can be able to see again.”
Rather than being ready for that, they were not ready to go to the city, out of their mountains. They were asking that the young man should become blind. In the night, he escaped.

The crowd is blind. And to have eyes in this crowd is to be condemned, is to be crucified. The greatest crime in the eyes of the crowd is somebody becoming enlightened because that man disturbs your peaceful sleep; he starts trying to wake you up. He starts destroying your superstitions; he starts fighting against your ideologies, which are keeping you asleep; against your beliefs, which are covering your eyes; against all kinds of your religious, social, and political dogmas, which want you to remain as you are because it is in their favor to exploit you, to enslave you.
Enlightenment is possible for everybody, but the crowd prevents it. Only a few daring people, courageous of spirit, follow the path alone into the unknown. They need somebody – at least the footprints of somebody, that somebody has gone ahead of them, at least somebody calling from the peaks of consciousness: charaiveti, charaiveti. That was Buddha’s word – keep on going, keep on going. Don’t stop.
So once in a while… But the phenomenon is not regular, and cannot be regular. About consciousness, nothing can be mechanical. Everything is spontaneous.
Man’s sleep is such that sometimes it is unbelievable. His unconsciousness is such that one wonders how he can go on being so unconscious. Because of this unconsciousness he suffers all kinds of misery, anxiety, fear, slavery, exploitation. He loses all his dignity, all his humanity. He misses all the joys of life, all the songs and all the dances.
He goes on doing things which he knows are not right, but he seems to be almost incapable of getting out of the routine. You know anger is not right, you know it is simply torturing yourself for somebody else’s fault. There is no logic in it, and you have suffered so much – but again you will do it.
Unconsciousness is very deep. And consciousness is a very small part, so unless you have great courage to use that small part of consciousness to transform the whole of your unconsciousness, it seems almost impossible to become enlightened. But seeing one man becoming enlightened creates a longing in you, a thirst in you, a trust in you that it is possible – a challenge to your sleeping humanity, that you have slept long enough and it is time to know what awakening is. What Gautam Buddha experienced or Socrates experienced is your birthright too.

Eunice and Frank were marooned on a small island in the middle of the ocean, the only two survivors of a shipwreck. Eunice was a virgin and a strict Catholic, but after a couple of months, Frank convinced her that they were never going to be rescued. Eunice finally relented and gave up her virginity.
After two years, Eunice became so ashamed of what she was doing that she killed herself.
A couple of years after she died, Frank became so ashamed of what he was doing that he buried her.

How you are going to respond to a situation is unpredictable. In a way that is a privilege, a prerogative of human beings, that they are unpredictable. But in a way it is a very dangerous privilege.
Still, it is good that man does not become mechanically enlightened, because then enlightenment will not be your glory but just a season. The season comes and people become enlightened; next year, again, when the season comes, people will become enlightened. But it is not your glory. Your glory is in your effort to attain the ultimate truth. Your glory is to know your being on your own.
The only thing in life that is unpredictable is enlightenment. Everything is predictable: when you are young you will fall in love, when you are old, you will die. Almost everything that happens to everybody will happen to you. Enlightenment is the one thing that does not happen to everybody, although everybody is capable – but very few people use the opportunity. Blessed are those who use the golden opportunity of becoming enlightened, because they prove everybody’s birthright and everybody’s ultimate growth, ultimate flowering.

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