The Hidden Splendor 05

Fifth 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.

Is it possible that for some, melting with the master comes first, and all else follows? Or are you after all my beloved as well as my master – even though I am not sleeping in your room!? Just with a move of your arms, fire spreads from deep within my body and giggles of pure delight, lightness, and joy follow like ripples in its wake. Sometimes a moment of your silence, or the impact of just a few of your words, carries me straight into infinite space. Osho, I feel that any melting that I have known so far is out of my melting in your love – and that melting with you is easier for me and more possible than melting with any other man has been. I have never melted in a total orgasm with a man, however beloved. Yet you say this has to come first, before any melting with you. Osho, I am scared to expose all this, but tell me: Have I not known any melting at all?
The physical world has definite laws without any exception. But the spiritual world has no laws as such, because there are always exceptions. That is part of the freedom of the spiritual area of our being. So whatever I say about the spiritual growth, always remember: there are exceptions because it is a freedom of consciousness.
It is freedom from laws, too. When I use the word law in the spiritual realm, I simply mean that, generally, it happens that way. But that does not mean that it only happens that way. What is the first step for one person may not be the first step for another person. What is the second step for one person may not be the second step for another person. Spirituality recognizes your individuality and your uniqueness. In the physical world, there are no exceptions because there is no consciousness and there is no freedom. Trees are not struggling for freedom, the stars are not struggling for freedom – they are not even conscious about the phenomenon. Not even the whole of humanity is striving for spiritual growth. Millions of people are not even aware that there is much more to life than they can ever imagine or can ever dream. They go on living as if they are under a physical, mechanical law.
My whole effort here is to break the ice for you, to make a space available for you so that you can see: you have every possibility to go beyond laws, rules, regularities. And no two persons’ spiritual growth is going to be the same, because no two persons are in any way the same. They are all unique individuals. As you become more and more alert, you will also become more and more unique. At the highest peak of consciousness, you are absolutely yourself, alone. There has never been anybody like you before, nor will there be anybody afterward. Existence does not repeat.
Many people have wondered why, after twenty-five centuries, millions of Buddhist monks – who have been striving hard, sincerely, honestly – have not been able to produce a single Gautam Buddha. And it is not only true about Gautam Buddha; the same is true about Socrates, the same is true about Kabir, the same is true about Jesus, the same is true about Nanak.
You can, at the most, imitate. You can act the role in the drama of life – but it will not be an authentic and existential growth in you, but only a parrotlike repetition. The reason why there has never been another Socrates, another Buddha, another Chuang Tzu, another Kabir, is not that people have not strived.
People have strived; millions of people have strived hard. And I want to say to you: it is because of their striving that they missed being themselves. They never became Buddhas, they never became Meeras. They never became Kabir, they never became Nanak. On the contrary, because they were trying to become somebody, they missed becoming what they were destined to be.
This whole world would have been tremendously beautiful if we had accepted a simple phenomenon – that each individual is unique. Hence, there can be no organized religions. Religion is of the individual, absolutely private, absolutely personal. It is a dialogue between the individual and existence, without any mediator.
You cannot become anybody other than yourself, and there is no need. If you grow and bring your whole potential to become actual, you will produce flowers which have never been known before. You will produce a fragrance for the first and last time, a fragrance of its own kind. You will be a historical phenomenon. Each individual has that capacity, but because all cultures and all teachings are driving people to become somebody else, they are destroying humanity. This whole humanity lives in such misery for the simple reason that nobody is allowed to be himself. Nobody is accepted just as himself and respected. Everybody is being humiliated.
You may not have thought of it this way: to tell you to become a Jesus is to humiliate you. It is insulting. To tell you to become a Gautam Buddha is to destroy your dignity, is to take away your pride of being a human being. You are being forced to be carbon copies. When you have the right and the potential to be the original, why should you be a carbon copy? But all the organized religions and your so-called leaders have been misleading you. And because you cannot become yourself, life becomes nothing but misery and anguish.
Just think of a rosebush: if the roses are condemned and the rosebush is asked to produce lotuses, you will create insanity in the rosebush! It cannot produce lotuses, it is not in its potential. It is not in its seed, it is not meant to be. But fortunately, there are no priests corrupting the rosebushes, no political leaders, no educationists trying to impose ideals on the rosebushes. That’s why rosebushes are still happy, still have a dance, still bring beautiful flowers of great fragrance. And the rosebush is not jealous at all of any lotus. There is no question of any jealousy. A lotus is a lotus. A marigold is a marigold, and they are all needed.
Existence would be very poor if everybody were a Gautam Buddha. Just think for a moment: everybody has become a Jesus Christ, carrying his own cross on his shoulders. Then everything else will stop! You have just to carry your cross all your life. In fact, it will be difficult to find a Judas because he himself will be carrying his own cross. It will be difficult to find the priest to crucify you; you will have to manage it yourself. There will not even be a crowd to see it, because they have to do their work. They have to dig in the ground, put their cross up, and crucify themselves. Perhaps people will make contracts with each other: “You crucify me, help me to arrange my crucifixion, and I will help you with your crucifixion.” Or there may be some agencies that do the work.
But it will be a very poor world where everybody is alike. The variety makes it rich, and the variety should be respected. You need not be worried. If things are happening differently to you, it is perfectly right. All I want is that things should be happening. Which step comes first and which step comes last in your journey does not matter.
All that matters is that we all reach our home, that our wandering stops, that our anguish and anxiety, our tensions disappear, that we come to the center of our being where we can be utterly relaxed – in joy, in peace, in blissfulness and in great gratitude toward existence. I know no other prayer.
All your prayers are false – there is only one prayer which is authentic, and that prayer is when you have arrived home and you feel tremendous gratitude toward existence that it not only gave you life, it gave you love, it gave you meditation. It gave you fellow travelers, it gave you masters, it gave you directions, dimensions to move in, and it gave you the courage and the intelligence. Only gratitude is the right prayer. If you are asking something, you are complaining. It is not prayer.
You are asking, “Is it possible that for some, melting with the master comes first – and all else follows?” Yes, it is absolutely possible.
You are saying, “I feel that any melting that I have known so far is out of my melting in your love.” The question is not in whose love the melting happens; the important thing is that the melting happens, so that the ego dissolves and you are left alone with your unique consciousness. In melting, your truth does not melt – only the false. So who becomes the excuse is absolutely nonessential and unimportant. What is important is that your ego dissolves. You are, and there is no sense of I-ness.
So if it is happening, you need not be worried, need not be concerned that perhaps something is going wrong because you are not following the steps in the sequence I talked about. In the world of consciousness, the deeper you will enter, the more you will be an exception.
The problem comes from the mind, which has been conditioned and is always waiting to raise questions to disturb your peace, to disturb your silence. Man has lived in such insanity – and goes on living in the same insanity.

Just the other day, I was telling you a joke which I knew was crude; but man is far more crude. The joke was about a Catholic nun and a man who find themselves on an island, shipwrecked. They are the only survivors.
For two years, they wait for someone to rescue them, but nobody comes. Then finally, the man persuades the nun, saying: “Forget all about the world. Forget all about your vows of celibacy and this and that. Let us start living, because there is nobody coming to rescue us.”
So they started making love. A bit reluctantly, the nun finally agreed. After all, a nun is also a woman. His idea finally entered the heart of the woman, because all your religion is only in the head; it never reaches to your heart. It never reaches to your body, it never reaches to your biology.
They were making love for two months and then the woman started feeling very guilty, because her conditioning was such that she has betrayed Jesus Christ, she has betrayed her religion. A nun is a bride of Jesus Christ, and this ugly fellow… But she is stuck with him on this island. She felt so bad about it that she committed suicide.
Two months after her death, the man started feeling that what he was doing was very bad. He was making love to the dead woman. He felt so bad, but a man is after all a man, and he was not a religious man. He buried the woman. Out of feeling bad, he buried the woman.

One of my friends informed me that it was a very crude joke. And just today, I received a press clipping: in Pakistan, a man has been caught red-handed – he has pulled out a dead woman from the grave and he was making love to her.
Now what do you say? And that man is not an exception. It is a fact recorded by history that Cleopatra – perhaps one of the most beautiful women, at least mythologically; but she was a historical person – was raped after she died. She was raped not by one man but by many men. According to custom, for three days, the body had to remain outside the grave. In those three days, she was attacked again and again in the night by a group of people and raped. She was dead.
My joke may seem crude to you, but in fact I am trying to tell you actual facts about your inhumanity to other human beings, your barbarousness, your ugliness. In a joke, you think, “It is just a joke.” I am trying my best to make it as less crude as possible, but it is a strange world.
Holland has denied me entry on one ground: that I have been speaking against homosexuals, and that hurts the feelings of homosexuals. My entry is refused by the parliament of Holland and the reason is that I have been speaking against homosexuals. One cannot even speak against perversions!
Just now, a few governments have stated how many people are suffering from AIDS. Not all the governments of the world – for example, the governments of the East are completely silent, because before you can declare it, you will have to test millions of people. India has a population now of nine hundred million people who would have to be tested.
But from those few governments who have given the number of people who are suffering from AIDS, the total is ten million. Their doctors have said that by the end of this century, there will be one hundred million people suffering from AIDS. If ten million people are suffering from AIDS, then what do you think? How many people are involved in homosexuality?
When I said for the first time that two-thirds of humanity would die because of AIDS, all the journalists laughed about it. And now the doctors are saying that at least seventy-five percent of people will die because of AIDS. That is a bigger number than I had predicted. My prediction was only two-thirds; that is sixty-six percent. They are talking now of seventy-five percent. But everybody is taking a very hopeful and optimistic attitude – and there are hundreds of other countries which are not exposing themselves, not reporting how many homosexuals they have and how many people are suffering from AIDS.
There may be no need of a nuclear war. AIDS may finish the whole humanity. But I was prevented from entering Holland because I have spoken against homosexuality – as if homosexuality is also a religion. Now, religious feelings are hurt; I have been sued again and again in courts because I have been hurting people’s religious feelings. Soon, I think homosexuals will be suing me through the courts. People who are suffering from AIDS will be suing me through the courts, saying, “This man is hurting our feelings.”
So rather than saying simple facts and data, I try to indicate the reality through my jokes. Don’t take my jokes nonseriously! You can take everything else that I say nonseriously, but not my jokes. They contain something which cannot be said directly. It will hurt you.
Just the other day, American Catholic priests have come up with an idea. I was telling you that Mohammedans in the Soviet Union are calling their fast “dieting” because fasting is against the communist government. Fasting is a religious thing so they have changed it to “dieting.” They are calling their prayers “physical exercises.”
But this is nothing compared to what the American Catholic priests have come up with. They have declared, “Celibacy does not prevent us from homosexuality – celibacy includes the idea that we should remain unmarried.” That is the meaning of celibacy according to their spokesman: “Celibacy means that we will remain unmarried. At the most, celibacy means we will not make sexual contacts with women, but there is no idea that celibacy prevents monks and priests from homosexuality.” These are your religious leaders! And you have depended on these religious leaders for centuries to guide you to spirituality.
Everywhere Catholic priests have been caught abusing small children. Homosexuality is rampant. In one monastery in Europe, half the monastery is homosexual, so they have divided the monastery in two parts. They have raised a wall: the homosexuals are separate, and those who are backward and don’t understand human freedom… Homosexuality is part of human freedom.
A few of my sannyasins have come to me. They belonged, before they came to me, to the women’s liberation movement and they told me, “The women’s liberation movement is very much against you because you have been condemning lesbianism, and you are converting many liberation women into sannyasins.” And their liberation consists in hating men! Rather than being in love with a man, they will be in love with women only. The man has to be boycotted. And if you say anything, it hurts their feelings. They are angry.
It seems almost impossible to say anything significant. That’s why I find jokes an indirect way of telling you things, because nobody can sue me in the court for telling a joke. A joke is, after all, a joke.

A man decides that he wants to become a monk. So he goes to the monastery and is informed that before he can become a monk, he must pass two tests. “First,” says the head monk, “We will put you in a cell for six months. You will have nothing to eat or drink but bread and water. And each entire day must be spent reading the Bible.”
“Then,” he continues, “should you pass the first test, you will be ready for the second test. For this, we put you in a room and take off all your clothes. We then tie a little bell to your male member and then we walk a nude nun through the room. Should that little bell make any sound at all, I am afraid you will be deemed unfit to join the monastery.”
So they put him in a cell with nothing but bread and water and he does nothing but read the Bible for six months. At the end of this time, he is once again brought before the head monk.
“Are you ready for the second test?” asks the head monk.
“I am,” says the man.
He is taken into a room and stripped down. They put the little bell on him, then they walk a nude nun through the room.
Well, right away his bell starts ringing.
The monk says to him, “I’m sorry, but I’m afraid you must leave.”
“Wait a minute,” says the man. “Are you going to tell me that every priest in this monastery has passed this test?”
“Every one,” says the chief monk.
“Before I will agree to leave,” says the man in defiance, “I demand proof. I want to see ten monks pass this test.”
“All right,” says the head monk. They get ten monks in the room, undress them, line them up, and put bells on them.
The nude nun then walks through and there is nothing but dead silence. Except of course for the first man’s bell, which is ringing like crazy. As a matter of fact, it rings so hard that it falls off. When the man bends over to pick it up, all the other ten bells ring.

Now there are governments who are making laws against homosexuality, but no government is daring to make celibacy a crime – which is the root cause. Homosexuality is only a symptom. Make celibacy a crime and then homosexuality will disappear on its own accord. But rather than making celibacy a crime, celibacy is still thought to be holy and spiritual. Homosexuality has to be condemned as a crime because of the fear of AIDS. But by declaring anything criminal, have you ever been able to stop it?
Your jails go on becoming bigger, their number goes on increasing. Your crimes go on increasing. As your laws increase, your crimes increase more than your laws. And it has been the idea in the past that if you punish a criminal, then other people will be prevented from committing the same crime – which has been found to be psychologically nonsense, because nobody is prevented.
In England, in the Middle Ages, they used to beat thieves in the middle of the town, naked – a hundred lashes, two hundred lashes, until they would fall unconscious. Their whole body covered in blood. Thousands of people would come to see it; it was free entertainment. But England’s parliament finally decided to stop it. The reason why they stopped it was that they were punishing a thief and because the crowd was so involved and so concentrated on looking at the man being beaten – naked, blood flowing out from all over his body – there were at least a dozen people who were cutting their pockets! So the whole idea that beating a thief will prevent other people from stealing was absolute nonsense. In fact, they were using the opportunity to cut people’s pockets.
You send people to jail. When they enter, they are amateur; when they come out, they have graduated from the university. Your laws and your jails teach the criminals just one thing: that committing a crime is not a crime, but being caught is a crime. So just be more alert, more artful, more articulate so that you are not caught. Jails are perfect universities, where there are very experienced and seasoned criminals who will train you, who have been coming and going from there for their whole life.

When I was put in the first jail in America, in that area there were six small cells, each cell for two persons. The man who was the sheriff of the jail had read my books, and was very careful: he took every care that was within his capacity to make my three days in his jail as comfortable as possible. He removed all the people from the cells who were smokers. He brought people chosen from six hundred inmates in the jail into the cells near me – the best people, the most understanding ones, intelligent, educated. He cleaned those six cells because he knew that I am allergic to smells.
I inquired of those inmates: “You seem to be very at ease here.” Somebody was very old, sixty years; somebody was fifty. Nobody was below thirty. They all said, “Outside life is difficult, a constant struggle. And because people know we are criminals, employment is difficult. Even our families don’t want us back as they lose respectability because of us. So whenever we are released, we commit a small crime in such a way that we can be caught immediately. So back we are in the jail! And the jail is the perfect place – no worry about employment, food is supplied on time, medical care is available, clothes are available. Everything that is needed is given and all our friends are here. Outside we feel alone.
“Our society is totally different, and here we have such experienced criminals, so wise that just to sit with them and learn is a great education. Once a person enters jail, he comes out a seasoned criminal, graduated. He has learned many things that he had never known before and now it becomes more difficult to catch him.”

Condemning homosexuality as a crime will drive homosexuals underground. Right now, it is better not to make homosexuality a crime, because people are ready to go for the test. Once it is a crime, people will stop going for the test or they will start bribing the doctor. They may have AIDS and they will bribe the doctors. In that bribe, they are saved and the doctor is also saved because no doctor wants patients suffering from AIDS in his hospital. But then those people are free in the society, spreading the virus – which spreads like wildfire.
But I was amazed that a cultured country like Holland should prevent me from having just a tourist visa because I had been speaking against homosexuality and AIDS and celibacy. Man is more barbarous than you ever conceive him to be. And man has done to other men such cruel acts that are unbelievable – and in the name of beautiful words: God, religion, nation, race.
My effort here is to make you aware, in every possible way, what kind of humanity we have – and how to transcend it because it is not only outside you, it is also inside you. You have been brought up by this mad society, and they have given all kinds of mad ideas to you.
And nobody seems to bother that man’s life can be such a joy, but it is going down the drain every day – from bad to worse. But at least for my people, I would like you to remember: if you can do only one thing, everything else that is ugly will disappear from your life and everything that is beautiful will come on its own. And that simple thing is: learning to be silent, learning to be meditative, being a watcher, being natural and yet alert and conscious of whatever you are doing, of whatever you are thinking.
Consciousness and nature – and just be easy and relaxed and you can get rid of this whole madness, in which man is rushing so fast that it seems it won’t take much to destroy life on this planet. Perhaps this is the last century. We may not be able to see life after this century. This beautiful earth will become just a dead graveyard.
So remember: whatever I say, don’t think that it is something like an absolute law. I am saying it in a very general way; then you have to adjust it to your individuality. You have to make out of it your own discipline, your own religion, your own path.

Sometimes, remembering you, it feels that your longing for me is much bigger than my longing for you. Sometimes, saying hello to a tree or looking at a mountain or a star, it feels that they are whispering: “Don't forget that we love you.” Am I imagining, or is it true that all existence wants of me is to open myself to all dimensions of its love?
Rather than being concerned whether what you are experiencing is imagination or reality, you should enjoy each moment with totality and intensity, not holding anything back. You are not doing that. If you were doing that, the question would not have arisen. I will read your question so that you can understand: “Sometimes, remembering you, it feels that your longing for me is much bigger than my longing for you.”
Why should my longing for you be bigger than your longing for me? I don’t have any longing at all – for you, or for anybody else. This idea is arising out of your ego. You want it that way: my longing should be bigger for you than your longing is for me. But you are not aware that this is the game of the ego and you are being befooled by it. I don’t have any longing at all. All that is past, far away. All longings have disappeared. Your longing for me will also disappear, and only then is there a possibility of meeting. Longing is a barrier, desire is a barrier.
I don’t have any longing. That does not mean that I am hurting you, don’t misunderstand me. It has nothing to do with you; it is just explaining to you my situation. In my heart, there is no longing. It is completely fulfilled. If I die this very moment, I will die in utter contentment because nothing is left which is incomplete.
I have nothing special to do tomorrow. I have not postponed anything. For thirty years continuously I am living in the moment, neither looking backward nor looking forward. Just this very moment is enough. It is so much, so overwhelming that I am absolutely grateful to existence for this moment, and I don’t have time to think about the next moment. When the next moment comes, I will live it.
But your ego must be telling you that my longing is bigger than your longing for me. I want your longing also to disappear, so we can meet with each other without any longing, without any desire, without any expectation.
The meeting with the master happens only when there is nothing else between them – just a pure meeting of two consciousnesses, of two flames. For no reason at all – just for the sheer joy.
You are saying, “Sometimes saying hello to a tree or looking at a mountain or a star, it feels like they are whispering, ‘Don’t forget that we love you.’” Again, your ego seems to be the center. Just as my longing has to be bigger than your longing, even the mountains and the stars and the trees are telling you, “Don’t forget that we love you.” It is not that you love them. Your ego is feeling very nourished.
You are asking, “Am I imagining?” This question would not have arisen at all. It arises only when you are imagining. Do you ever think that you are imagining this meeting here? Do you ever think you are imagining these lights here? Do you ever think you are imagining my words, my being, my presence? No, the question arises only when you are imagining.
It is certainly imagination that mountains and rivers and trees say to you, “Don’t forget that we love you.” That’s how you distort everything. I have been telling you: love the mountains, love the trees, love the stars, because by loving, your consciousness will expand. But you are doing just the opposite: you are imagining that the whole existence is in need of you. They are all begging you, “Don’t forget us. Without you, what will happen to us? The whole existence will become a widow.” The rivers will cry, the mountains will mourn, the stars will commit suicide.
Again, you are saying: “Is it true that all existence wants of me is to open myself to all dimensions of its love?” But you are not saying even once that you have to love existence. Again, you are saying, “Existence wants me to open so that it can love me.” The ways of the ego are very subtle. But howsoever subtle they are, if you are a little alert, a little intelligent, you can catch hold of the ego.
You were not here; existence was here and perfectly happy. The stars were not missing you, neither the mountains nor the rivers. And one day, you will not be again and existence will continue its celebration, its dance, its song. It will not miss you. But don’t feel hurt. You have not done anything that you should be missed.
Existence misses Gautam Buddha even today, existence misses Socrates even today. The last words of Socrates to the judges were, “When I am gone, then you will miss me. And your names will be remembered only because of me. Otherwise, nobody will remember even your names. But right now, you are deaf and blind.”
Love existence so much that certainly when you leave, the whole of existence misses you. But what have you done to be missed? You have been only exploiting existence. You have been only destructive to existence. Do you think you have contributed to the beauty of existence a little bit more?
Have you made its music a little deeper? Have you joined in its dance and made it a little juicier? What have you done? Have you added your silence to the silence of existence? Have you raised the consciousness of humanity by raising your consciousness? Then certainly, it will miss you.
But to raise your consciousness, you will have to drop this ego and you will have to drop all this imagination and you will have to drop this mind which is playing tricks with you. Mind is so tricky and plays such games, so convincing to you. That’s why the whole humanity goes on living in misery.

Two Jews meet on a train. One asks the other if he has the time.
No answer.
Again he asks. Again, no answer.
Eventually, he taps him hard on the knee and almost shouts his question, and the other at last tells him the time.
“And why did it take you so long, if I may ask?”
“Well, it is like this. We will get talking. We will become friendly. When we get to Vienna, I will ask you to come home with me to have a bite to eat and you will meet my daughter. She is beautiful and you are a nice-looking chap and you will fall in love and you will want to get married and quite frankly, I don’t want a son-in-law who has not got a watch.”

Such long-range thinking! But everybody’s mind is doing such things. Beware: imagination is not going to help. Howsoever beautiful it is, it is just a soap bubble.
Meditate more. First get in touch with your own being, and only then do you have the right to say hello to the trees. Only then do you know the language of how to talk with the mountains and the clouds and the stars and the rivers – because their language is silence, and unless you know that language, how can you talk with them?
In silence, there is no talking involved but still a dialogue happens, a deep understanding without words, a transfer of energy without language. Trees will not say anything and you will not hear anything, but between you and the being of the tree there will be a transfer of energy – not of language. Only then you will know that you have to love if you want love to be showered on you.
Yes, mountains can love, rivers can love, trees can love, clouds can love. But before they love you, you have to learn how to love – how to love this whole existence, how to respect life, how to have a reverence for all that is.
To me, this is authentic religion: reverence for all that is. And then certainly, you will be showered with flowers which nobody will see, but you will understand, and certainly you will find you are needed. It is one of the greatest joys in existence: to be needed by existence, to know that you are fulfilling something essential by being here. But don’t start with imagination – start with meditation. Begin with meditation, and let your meditation make you so silent that you can join with existence in its eternal silence.
There are experiences which are beyond words. Don’t try to imagine those great experiences, because your imagination can become a barrier. The mind is the barrier. Only silence is the bridge, no-mind is the bridge.

What is meant by a spiritual ego? Is spiritual greed one of its symptoms? Is it curable?
The spiritual ego is not something different from the ordinary ego. Somebody feels his ego because he has money, somebody feels his ego strengthened because he has political power. Somebody feels ego because he has great respectability. But the ego is the same. Somebody feels that he is spiritual – he’s a great saint, holier than you – that is also the same ego. You can call it “spiritual ego,” but spiritual ego is a contradiction in terms.
I have heard a story…

There were three monasteries in the mountains. One day, three monks, one from each of the monasteries, met on the road, just by chance.
One of them said, “You have beautiful monasteries. But as far as our monastery is concerned, you cannot compete with us in our austerity.”
The second said, “We know your monastery; its discipline is arduous, your austerity is great. But nobody can compete with us as far as learning is concerned. Our monastery is full of scholars, great scholars.”
Both looked at the third man. He said, “You are both right. One monastery is very perfectionistic in its disciplines, austerities, and the second is certainly full of great scholars. But we are the tops in humbleness.”

“Tops in humbleness…” You can see the contradiction. There is no such thing as spiritual ego. Yes, there is such a thing that the ego can exploit any direction of life: it can be religious, it can be spiritual, it can be financial, it can be political. It can be scholarship, it can be beauty, it can be physical strength. The ego is capable of exploiting anything. But spiritual ego is simply an impossibility because spirituality arises in you only when the ego dissolves. Either you are an egoist or you are in the world of the spirit, you can’t be both together. They don’t have any coexistence.
You are asking, “Is spiritual greed one of its symptoms?” Any greed – material or spiritual – is simply greed. Greed means you want more and more and more; there never comes a time when this continuous hankering for more, stops. So whether you are in search of more spirituality or more money or more power, it does not matter.
But in fact, about spirituality, you should understand that the same contradiction again arises: you become spiritual only when this desire for more and more disappears, when you are utterly satisfied and contented as you are, when there is no “more” goading you, because the “more” creates the future. “More” means tomorrow is needed. For the spiritual person, this moment is more than enough. He is utterly grateful for whatever is allowed to him. His contentment cannot be disturbed by any desire for more.
You are asking, “Is it curable?” It is a very strange question. Do you want to get rid of the ego or do you want to cure it? If you want to cure it, then you are in a wrong place. Here, we simply chop the head off! We know only one cure: a simple surgery.
What do you mean by “curable”? Do you want your ego to become more healthy? Stronger? More powerful? That will be destructive to your spirituality. That will be against your inner growth. The ego is your enemy, not your friend. The enemy has to be destroyed – completely destroyed. Not to be cured, but killed!

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