The Hidden Splendor 08

Eighth 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.

What is religion? What is your opinion on organized religion?
Religion is the highest flight of human consciousness – it is the individual search for truth. The inner truth cannot be made an object of common knowledge. Each person has to go within himself; each time, it is a new discovery. It does not matter how many people have attained awakening, realization; the moment you attain it, it will be absolutely fresh – because it cannot be borrowed.
The search basically consists of knowing your interiority. You have an outside, and no outside can exist without an inside: the very existence of the outside is proof of an inner world. The inner world consists of three layers: thoughts are the most superficial; feelings are deeper – and then is the being, which is your godliness. To know one’s own godliness, to know one’s own eternity, is the basic search of religion.
All your senses lead you outside: eyes open to look outside, ears hear what is happening outside, your hands can touch what is outside. Senses are the doors to go out – and always remember, the door that takes you out can also take you in. It is the same door from which you go out of your home and through which you come back in; just the direction changes.
To go out, you need open eyes. To come in, you need closed eyes, all your senses silent. The first encounter is with the mind – but that is not your reality. Although it is inside your skull, it is not you – it is the reflection of the outside. All your thoughts are reflections of the outside.
For example, a blind man cannot think about colors because he has not seen colors – hence the reflection is not possible. The blind man cannot even see darkness. Because he has never seen light or darkness outside, there is no possibility of any reflection. The blind man does not know whether there is darkness or there is light – both words are meaningless. If you analyze your thoughts, you will find they are all triggered inside you by outside reality – so they are basically of the outside, reflected in your inner lake of consciousness.
But because of these thoughts… They are a tremendous crowd in you; they go on accumulating, they create a China Wall. You have to go beyond your thoughts. Religion knows only one method – there are different names, but the method is one: it is watchfulness, it is witnessing. You simply watch your thoughts, with no judgment, no condemnation, no appreciation – utterly aloof; you just see the process of thoughts passing on the screen of your mind.
As your watcher becomes stronger, thoughts become less – in the same proportion. If the watcher is ten percent of your energy, then ninety percent of your energy is wasted in thoughts; if your watcher becomes ninety percent, then only ten percent remains in thoughts. The moment you are one hundred percent a watcher, the mind becomes empty.
This whole process is known as meditation. As you pass through the thoughts, you will come to the second layer which is inside you – of feelings, of your heart, which is more subtle. But by now, your watcher is capable even of watching your moods, your sentiments, your emotions, your feelings – howsoever subtle they may be. This same method works in the same way as it worked with the thoughts: soon there will be no sentiments, no feelings, no moods. You have gone beyond the mind, and the heart. Now there is utter silence; nothing moves. This is your being; this is you.
The taste of your being is truth. The beauty of your being is the beauty of existence. The silence of your being is the language that existence understands. And just to be settled in being, you have come home. The wandering is finished. The struggle is finished. At ease, you sit silently within yourself. A great hidden splendor is revealed to you: you are not separate from reality, you are one with it. The trees and the moon and the stars and the mountains are all part of one organic unity; you are also part of that organic unity – you become part of God.
Religion is man’s highest achievement. Beyond religion, there is nothing – but there is no need either. Your being is so abundant, so overflowing with bliss, silence, peace, understanding, ecstasy, that for the first time, life becomes really a song, a dance, a celebration. Those who do not know religion don’t know celebration.
But organized religion is a totally different affair. I have to make it clear to you that authentic religion is always individual. The moment truth is organized, it dies; it becomes a doctrine, a theology, a philosophy – but it is no longer an experience, because the crowd cannot experience. Experience happens only to individuals – separately.
It is almost like love. You cannot have organizations of love – so that you need not bother; the organization will take care, the priest will love on your behalf. But that’s what has happened to religion. Each time a man discovers the truth, immediately one of the most cunning parts of humanity, the priests, surround him. They start compiling his words; they start interpreting his words; and they start making it clear to people that if you want to know truth, you have to go via them – they are agents of God. They may call themselves prophets, they may call themselves messengers; they may choose any name, but the reality is they are self-appointed agents of God. They don’t know God, but in the name of God, they exploit humanity.
Organized religion is another form of politics. Just as I have always condemned politics as the lowest activity of human beings, the same is my attitude about organized religions. You can see it: the priests and the politicians have always been in conspiracy against humanity. They have been supporting each other. They have divided life between themselves so that your worldly life belongs to the politician, he is the ruler here, and your inner life belongs to the priest, he is the ruler there.
One sometimes feels so amazed. It seems unbelievable that even in the twentieth century, the pope could declare, a few months ago, that to communicate with God directly is a sin. You should go through the priest, the right channel – because if people start going directly to God, confessing to God, praying to God, the millions of priests will be unemployed. They don’t do anything; their whole function is to deceive you. Because you don’t understand the language of God, and you are not so evolved, just for some fee – a donation to their church or to their temple – they will do the job for you.
All those donations go in the pockets of the priests. They don’t know anything about God, but they are very learned – they can repeat scriptures like parrots. But their inner desire is not for God, not for truth – they are not seekers, they are exploiters.
I have heard…

A priest bought two parrots and he taught them, with great hardship, beautiful statements of Jesus Christ. Everybody was really amazed – the parrots were so accurate. He also made small beads for them so they were constantly praying, and he also found small Bibles for them; they always kept their Bibles open, and were counting their beads. Although they could not read, they had already crammed everything. The priest would open the page and say, “Twelfth page,” and they would start reading it – not that they were reading; they had memorized it.
The priest was very pleased and he felt it would be good to have one more parrot. Rather than learning the Bible and the beads, he could be taught to give whole sermons. He found a parrot, and the pet shop owner said, “Your wish will be fulfilled; this parrot is the most intelligent I have ever seen.”
But he was not aware that it was a female parrot. As the parrot was put in the same cage as the other two parrots that were counting their beads and reading the Bible, they both looked at the female parrot, and one parrot said to the other, “George, now drop those beads! Our prayers have been heard.”

Your priests are no more than parrots – and their prayers are for power, for prestige, for money. They are politicians in disguise; they are doing politics in the name of God – the politics of numbers. There are now seven hundred million Catholics; naturally the pope is the most powerful religious man in the world.
Every religion has been trying to increase its population by different methods. Mohammedans are allowed to marry four women so that they can produce four children per year. And they have been successful: they are the second-largest religion after Christianity.
Organized religion is only a contentless, meaningless name; hidden inside is the politics of numbers. You know perfectly well – as the election comes near, your politicians start going to see the shankaracharya. For five years, nobody goes to visit the shankaracharya, but when the election comes near, then the prime minister goes to visit the shankaracharya. He goes for a pilgrimage to the temples, high and deep in the mountains of the Himalayan range. For what? Suddenly, a great religious urge has arisen – which subsides as the election ends.
These people need votes; they have to pay respect to the leaders of religions. And a shankaracharya feels great that the prime minister is touching his feet. And the followers of the shankaracharya, the Hindus, feel that “our prime minister is a very religious person.”
When the pope comes to India, even the president and the prime minister with his whole cabinet stand in line at the airport to receive him. For what? The third-largest religion in India is now Christianity, and to pay respect to the pope means all the votes of the Christians will be yours.
Organized religions – whether it is Christianity or Hinduism or Mohammedanism – have not been seekers of truth. In two thousand years, what truth has organized Christianity added to the statements of Jesus? So what is the need of this organization? It is not increasing religiousness in the world, it is simply repeating what Jesus has said – which is available in books for anybody to read. In twenty-five centuries, how many Buddhists have searched for the truth, or have found the truth? Just a long line of parrots repeating what Gautam Buddha has found.
You should remember that Gautam Buddha was not part of any organized religion; neither was Mahavira part of any organized religion, nor was Jesus part of any organized religion – they were individual seekers. Truth has always been found by individuals. That is the privilege of the individual, and his dignity.
Organized religions have created wars – just as politicians have done. Their names may be different: politicians fight for socialism, for communism, for fascism, for Nazism, and organized religions have been fighting for God, for love, for their concept of what truth is. Millions of people have been killed in the clashes between Christians and Mohammedans, between Christians and Jews, between Mohammedans and Hindus, between Hindus and Buddhists. Religion has nothing to do with war; it is a search for peace. But organized religions are not interested in peace – they are interested in becoming more and more powerful and dominant.
I condemn the organized religions in the same way I condemn the politicians because they are nothing but politics. When I said to you that religious people should be respected, honored – the politicians should go to them for advice – I was not talking about organized religions; I was talking only about religious individuals. A religious individual is neither Hindu nor Christian nor Mohammedan. How can he be? God himself is not Hindu, not Mohammedan, not Christian. And the man who knows something of the divine becomes colored with his divinity, becomes fragrant with godliness. In the ancient East these religious people were our highest flowers, and even kings and emperors used to go to them to touch their feet and to be blessed – to ask their advice on problems which they were unable to solve.
If we want the world to remain alive, we have to bring back our ancient childhood days when the religious person had no interest of his own. That’s why his eyes were clear, his heart was pure love, his being was nothing but a blessing. Whomsoever came to him was healed, his problems were solved; he was imparted new insights into rotten old problems.
Organized religions should disappear from the world – they should drop this mask of being religious. They are simply politicians, wolves hiding themselves in the skin of sheep. They should come into their true colors; they should be politicians – there is no harm in that. And all the time they are politicians, but they are playing the game in the name of religion.
Organized religions don’t have any future. They should drop their disguise and come truly out in front as politicians, and be part of the political world so that we can find the authentic religious individual – who will be very rare. But just a few authentic religious individuals can lead the whole world toward light, toward immortal life, toward ultimate truth.

I have been living in America while you have been traveling around the world. Now I have come here to your mystery school, to enjoy you for a few weeks before I continue my life in the West. Osho, I feel you so strongly inside of me that I don't experience the ache of being physically away from you. I am savoring every moment of being in your presence while I am here, yet I don't feel a longing to stay. Is it possible for the marketplace to actually be my mystery school for now? Is there anything that I can do for you out there? You are the center of the cyclone, Osho. I am so grateful, and I love you.
The love between the master and the disciple is not of the physical; hence space makes no difference. You can be far away on another star, but your heart will be still beating with me. That is the only closeness, the real closeness; otherwise, you can be sitting by my side and still you may be wandering somewhere on some other star.
I am not interested in your physical body, where it is; I am interested in your being – that it is centered. I am interested in your love – that it reaches as many people as possible.
The marketplace is perfectly the right place for anyone who wants to grow spiritually. In the past, the fallacy was to renounce the marketplace and run away to the mountains. But if your mind has not changed, even in the mountains your mind will be thinking of your business, of your wife, of your children. If some traveler comes by, you will be hankering to know what is happening there. If your mind remains the same, it does not matter that you have renounced a palace.

I was traveling in the Himalayas and I saw a very beautiful bodhi tree. I was tired, and it was time; I have never in my whole life missed a good two hours’ sleep in the afternoon. It was very cool and the shadow was thick, so I was just going to lie down, and a man came and said, “You cannot lie down here.”
I said, “What is the problem?”
He said, “This is my tree, and I have been living under this tree for five years.”
I said, “You look like a sannyasin.”
He said, “I am; I am a Hindu monk.”
I said, “You have renounced the world?”
He said, “Yes, I have renounced everything.”
“But,” I asked, “What about this tree? It is still yours. And the shadow is so big, we can both rest underneath it. I will not disturb you because I will be sleeping, and I don’t snore – unless I decide to.”
He said, “What do you mean?”
I said, “If you snore, then I will snore loudly. I cannot snore while I am asleep; so I have to pretend that I am asleep. And I will snore loudly, unless you stop your snoring. If you don’t snore, there is no problem: there is a lot of space here, and I am going on my way after just two hours.
“But I must say to you that you have left the world, but the world is still within your heart. The very idea of ‘my tree’ is not different in any way from my kingdom, my palace, my wife. It is not a question of what you are claiming as mine; the question is that you are possessing.”

Humanity has to face two problems from the past. People renounce the world, but nothing is renounced. You can leave your house, you can leave your wife, you can leave your friends, you can leave your money – but where will you leave your mind, and how will you leave your mind? If you can leave your mind, then there is no need to go anywhere – then your very house becomes the temple, because the real question is transcending the mind. These monks who left the world lived in a very illusory idea that they were no longer concerned with the world. They missed the chance to grow. Secondly, living in a mountain cave you may not get angry – because anger needs somebody to provoke it. There is nobody to provoke you.
I have heard…

A man lived for thirty years in the Himalayas, and he had gone there because of his too-angry mind. His mind was so angry that when he was in anger he was almost mad. One day he pushed his wife into the well, and then as he became aware of what he had done, he decided that now he would renounce this world. And for thirty years anger never happened, because there was no wife, no children, no customers, no friends, no enemies – there was nobody. Slowly, slowly his fame spread to the plains: “A man has been living for thirty years in the caves, and we have never seen such a silent man.”
There was going to be a great fair, the Kumbha Mela, in Prayag – it happens every twelve years. It is the biggest gathering in the whole world; millions of people come. A few people went to this silent monk and said, “All the great saints and monks are coming to the fair to give their teachings to the people who are going to participate. It is time you came down: you have not come down for thirty years; now you are ripe.” It was very ego-fulfilling, this invitation.
He came down to the plains. As he entered the crowd of millions – and they did not know anything about him – somebody stepped on his feet, and all those thirty years disappeared. He grabbed the man by his neck and he said, “You idiot, don’t you see that I am a saint?” It was very difficult to take him away; he was going to kill the man. He was the same man who had killed his wife thirty years before. It was not such a great crime; the crowd was so thick that if somebody stepped on your feet, it was not intentional. But it made him aware of one thing: that even thirty years in the Himalayas had not changed him a little bit.

So this is the second problem. Your real test is in the world – whether you are becoming silent or not, whether you are becoming more loving and compassionate or not, whether you are growing spiritually or not. Go to the marketplace, but remember not to get lost in it.
Remain a watcher. It is very easy to get lost.
You have asked me, “Is there anything that I can do for you out there?” Only one thing I expect from all of you: to be yourself, to discover your inner beauty, your purity of consciousness, your hidden splendor – and spread it to as many people as possible. People are miserable. Help them to laugh a little, to sing a little, to dance a little.
I don’t want missionaries. You are not to spread my teachings – I don’t have any anyway – but you have to spread the joy, the blissfulness, the silence that you have felt here. Don’t let it become just a faded memory. You are going to the greatest marketplace in the world, to California. You will have to be very watchful. If you can remain untouched by California and all its stupidities… I have been thinking to call the saints “California-returned.”
Just take a joke from me; laugh and help others to laugh.

An American traveling in the United Kingdom was riding in a train with an Englishman and an elderly English lady with her pet Pekinese. They had traveled only a short distance when the dog threw up all over the American’s trousers. Instead of apologizing, the English woman fondled her dog and comforted it, saying, “Poor, itsy-bitsy doggy has a little tummy ache.”
A few miles later the dog raised its leg and pissed all over the American. Again the English woman consoled her dog, saying, “Poor itsy-bitsy doggy has a cold in the bladder.”
A short while later the dog shit all over the Yank’s other things. Exasperated, the American stood up, grabbed the dog and threw it out of the window.
At this point the Englishman commented, “You Yanks are a peculiar lot. You speak the wrong language, you live on the wrong side of the ocean, and you, sir, threw the wrong bitch out of the window.”

As the years have gone by since I took sannyas, my love has changed its quality. At first I felt a certain excitement; now there is a deep coolness and I feel relaxed within myself. This is accentuated when I sit in front of you in meditation. As I am writing this, a certain little voice inside bubbles up and says, “Yes, everything is fine.” Osho, is this little voice a figment of my imagination, my mind playing tricks?
Yoga Videh, I have been watching you. I have seen you becoming more silent, more peaceful. A certain grace is arising in your eyes and on your face. In the beginning I used to see that it was even difficult for you to sit for two hours – you were tossing and turning. Now all that is past; you sit almost like a marble statue. This shows the inner centering.
So whatever you have heard is not a figment of your imagination. I also say to you that yes, everything is fine. But don’t be satisfied with what you have attained. There is much more – infinitely much more. As you go deeper and deeper, you will find more and more treasures, and unless you come to the feeling of immortality, eternity, remember that the journey has not ended.
You will come across beautiful spaces which are so enchanting, so magical that one thinks, what more can there be in life? So much bliss, so much benediction – but don’t stop. Everybody has to discover his eternity: “I am part of a life that knows no death.” It is not far away if you go on and on.
Whatever happens, be grateful to existence and move on.
Charaiveti, charaiveti – this was one of the constant messages of Gautam Buddha. Whenever sannyasins came to relate to him their state of mind, their consciousness, he would always say, “Everything is fine, but charaiveti, charaiveti. Continue, continue going on and on and on, because I know there is much more to be discovered.”
Remember the fragrance of the beautiful words of one of the great Zen masters, Ryokan:
With no mind, blossoms invite the butterfly.
With no mind, the butterfly visits the blossoms.
There is no cerebral activity in it. The flowers are not thinking and planning how to invite the butterfly. With no mind, in their silence, is their invitation.
With no mind, blossoms invite the butterfly.
With no mind, the butterfly visits the blossoms.
When the flower blooms, the butterfly comes.
When the butterfly comes, the flower blossoms.
There is such a synchronicity in existence. You become graceful, the whole existence becomes graceful; you become silent, everything else becomes silent. A song arises in you, and all around the birds start singing; you dance, and you see the whole existence is dancing with you, hand in hand.
Says Ryokan,
I do not know others, others do not know me.
Not knowing each other we naturally follow the way.
There is no need of knowledge, because nature has its own wisdom. If you don’t interfere with nature and its wisdom, everything goes as it should go.
I do not know others, others do not know me.
Not knowing each other we naturally follow the way.
Whatever is happening to you Videh, just follow it, very naturally. Don’t be in a hurry, don’t bring your knowledge to improve upon it. Nobody can improve upon nature: when the spring comes, the flowers will come also – and there is no way to bring the spring, and without the spring the flowers won’t come. So go on the way you are moving. It is the right path, the easy path in your naturalness and spontaneity, and you will not be going astray. You will reach to the ultimate ocean where one merges with the eternal life. Knowledge is really a very complicated phenomenon; you have to be like little children.

Little William went to his father and said, “Daddy, where did I come from?” The father started to stutter and stammer, but he realized that he had to tell his son the facts of life.
“Sit down, Willie,” he said. At great length he described the whole business of creation, beginning with the birds and the bees. Then he went into the most graphic descriptions of human intercourse. He concluded at last, feeling limp and drained. He took a handkerchief and wiped the perspiration from his brow: “Okay, Willie, do you understand now?”
Willie scratched his head. “Not really, Dad. Henry says he came from New Jersey, but you have not told me where I came from.”

His question is of a very innocent character, but the father is a knowledgeable person. He gives a whole discourse on how human beings are produced – and he is perspiring and stuttering and stammering. And the boy must be puzzled: what is going on? He has simply asked a simple question: Where did I come from? Such a complicated journey. And Henry has come from New Jersey.
Be natural, be simple, be innocent, and allow nature to guide you – it has never misguided anybody. Knowledge, on the contrary, has never been able to guide anybody to the ultimate goal, the ultimate peak of our experience, of our consciousness, of our blissfulness, of our enlightenment.

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