The Hidden Splendor 24

TwentyFourth 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.

I find that the true moments of joy and peace in my life come when I am the witness. Witnessing seems to come easier when I make some effort for it, such as now, in the vipassana group. You talked recently about the futility of will, but for me it seems some effort or will is needed for the growth of awareness. Would you please comment?
It is possible to create a certain awareness through effort and through will but it will not be the true awareness. That which is created by you cannot be eternal. That which is forced by you will immediately disappear the moment you drop the effort. You forget to will. And you cannot will twenty-four hours a day. Will needs tremendous energy; the effort will be very tiring.
And after the awareness that is created by will disappears, you will fall deeply into unawareness, deeper than you were before. Will is an instrument for creating false things. You can create an ego through willpower because the ego is false. But you cannot create your being; it is already there. So is the case with awareness: the authentic awareness is not created by you, it is discovered by you. And the discovery needs no effort on your part because you are the problem, your efforts are the hindrances.
You have to be absent – with all your willpower, with all your efforts. You have simply to give way, and then there will be a totally different quality of awareness – spontaneous, joyous, relaxing, rejuvenating, and you can never be tired of it. It is simply your nature. It will remain there even in your sleep, burning like a small candle in the darkness of sleep.
That which is created by will cannot be of the beyond, it can only be something below you. It is your creation – it cannot be bigger than you. That which you are creating has a cause: your will, your effort. The moment the cause is removed, the flame of awareness will be gone. Your will was functioning like a fuel. I will not support it. It is fake. And because you don’t know the authentic, you cannot make the distinction.
Please try to be in touch with the spontaneous – even just a moment’s glimpse and you will see: the difference is so vast. One is just manufactured by you, with all your weaknesses, with all your frailties, with all your unconsciousness – and the other comes from the beyond. The other is divine, and only the divine can liberate you. Only the divine can be your eternal peace, silence, blissfulness.
You say, “I find that the true moments of joy…” Have you ever known untrue moments of joy? Either joy is, or is not. Have you ever experienced untrue moments of joy? What do you mean by “true moments of joy”? Certainly, you are comparing with your moments of hypocrisy, when you try to appear to be happy, joyful and you know you are not; your smile is just an exercise of the lips. The heart is not behind it; most probably it is just a way to hide your tears. You are afraid that if you don’t start laughing, you may start crying; it is better to laugh so you don’t expose yourself to others.
People try in every way to hide their misery, their pain, their anguish. Just go to a Lions Club or a Rotary Club and see people – everybody seems enlightened, and the same idiots are behaving as unconsciously as anybody else twenty-four hours a day. But they are simply following a ritual. You are supposed to smile, you are supposed to look happy. Slowly, slowly you simply become a supposition.

Mrs. Reagan boarded a train in Washington late one night and was escorted to an upper berth. Nancy climbed up, stretched out and tried to sleep. However, a man in the lower berth was snoring intolerably. His loud snores became so unbearable, the President’s wife leaned over and jabbed the man with her umbrella.
He awoke immediately, looked up at her and said, “It won’t do you no good, lady, I had a good look at you when you got on the train.”

People are showing one thing, thinking something else. Now when he was looking at Nancy, he was not showing what was going on in his mind.
We have become so pseudo, and to a pseudo personality nothing of value can ever happen. I would like you to remember that either you have moments of joy or you don’t have. There is no third alternative because the third alternative will be simply fake, untrue, dishonest. And once you become accustomed to the dishonest, to the insincere within yourself, then your darkness will start getting darker. Rather than moving toward light, you will be moving toward darker spaces of your being.
You say, “I find that the true moments of joy and peace in my life come when I am the witness.” You have never experienced the witness, because to experience the witness is to go beyond peace, is to go beyond joy, is to go beyond everything into absolute nothingness and silence. There is no experience.
Witnessing is not an experience. Witnessing is going beyond all experiences, because experiences are other than you; witnessing is your very being. Experiences are like clouds in the sky – sometimes very beautiful – white clouds, black clouds with silver lines shining through them, or rainbows passing through them, or at the time of sunrise or sunset, when the whole sky becomes psychedelic. But the clouds are not the sky. You are not your experiences. Your experiences are just clouds in the sky of your being. When all the clouds are gone and the empty space remains, you will know what witnessing means.
“Witnessing,” according to you, “seems to come easier when I make some effort for it, such as now in the vipassana group. You talked recently about futility of will, but for me, it seems some effort or will is needed for the growth of awareness.”
In a way you are right, because you don’t know the real awareness. So by effort, by will, you force yourself into some kind of alertness. This alertness is almost like when you come home and find your house is on fire: suddenly, you will find a great awareness in you which has never been there. But it is because the house is on fire; the shock is so much that it has made you a little awake, has brought you out of your sleep. But you cannot go on putting houses on fire just to be a little awake.
And this kind of awareness is very costly and very dangerous – costly, because it can deceive you and you can start feeling that you have become aware, and dangerous because it will take you away from the authentic experience. Try to relax; don’t make any effort, because never in the history of man has anybody become awakened through effort or will. Those who have become aware have always become aware when they had dropped all their efforts and all their will. But man’s blindness knows no limits.
In the life of Gautam Buddha, who can be said to be the most well-known historical figure who reached to the highest peak of awareness… But his followers around the world and in the East – except for India, the whole East is Buddhist; it is the third greatest religion in the world – still go on missing. I have been looking into hundreds of books from Korea, from China, from Japan, from Sri Lanka, from Burma, from Tibet – but I have not found a single mention of the most important thing that happened in Gautam Buddha’s life.
For six years, he made every effort. He brought his whole willpower to become aware; he left no stone unturned. Naturally, this intensity of work, effort, this arduous journey, made him so tired and so frustrated. Finally, one full-moon night sitting by the side of a small river, Niranjana in Bihar, he decided, “I have renounced the world, I have renounced my kingdom. Today I renounce even my effort and my will – even the desire to find the truth. I am so tired, so utterly frustrated that this is my second renunciation.” He dropped all of the methods that he had been trying. After six years, for the first time, he relaxed and had a good sleep, without dreams. Otherwise, his sleep had been full of nightmares, because on the one hand he had renounced everything and on the other hand, all of his efforts had led only to failure. Or fake experiences.
In the morning, as the last star was disappearing in the sky, he opened his eyes and he could not believe: this is the space he has been looking for! As the last star disappeared, his ego disappeared too. As the sky became utterly empty… The stars are gone, the moon is gone and the sun has not come yet – just in that gap, he also became just the same silence, uncluttered with anything. And this was what has been known down the ages as his enlightenment. Buddhists around the world go on saying, go on writing, that he found his enlightenment after six years of arduous effort. The reality is just the opposite. He found enlightenment after he renounced all his efforts.
It is true that you cannot renounce if you have not made any effort. So, you are in a good position: you are making effort and you are making use of your willpower. But remember, all these will lead you to fake experiences. And when the time comes, don’t be a coward: renounce all these experiences of joy and peace and awareness, because they are produced by will and effort. Then comes the real miracle, because your very being is eternally awake. It has never fallen asleep, but you have lost the track to reach it.
Only in relaxation can you find your center of being. If you go on making an effort and running after some goal, to achieve awareness, you will go farther and farther away from your reality. Don’t do anything. At least for a few moments every day, simply be. The heart will be beating, the breathing will be going on – you are not doing anything, not even thinking. And in these moments, the whole sky opens up. It is one of the greatest wonders that what we are seeking and searching for lives together is just present, eternally present within ourselves. But because of our efforts and because of our mind to achieve, we go on missing it.
Our life is a very stupid mess. This same life can be a great splendor, but we won’t allow it. We go on doing something or other, and all our doings are disturbances. This is the greatest lesson in life to learn: that the ultimate phenomenon happens only when we are not doing anything, when we are almost absent, when we are just an open door and the sun rays come dancing in and the fresh breeze passes through us. Suddenly, the whole existence starts helping us to be our true self. Witnessing is the quality of our true self. It is not a question of creating it, it is a discovery.
I have heard…

God is making all the creatures of the earth and is giving out sex lives to each animal. First he turns to the human. “I am giving you ten years of a good sex life,” says God.
The man’s face falls. “Is that all?” he asks.
“I only have so much to go around, fella,” says God. He then turns to the monkey and says, “I’m giving you twenty years of a good sex life.”
The monkey says, “Oh, I don’t really need that much. Ten years would be more than enough for me.”
The man, standing nearby, overhears this and says excitedly, “I will take it! I will take those extra ten years.”
“All right,” says God. “You got it.” He then turns to the lion. “I’m going to give you twenty years of good sex life.”
The lion replies, “You know, God, I really think I would be happier with just ten.”
The man starts hopping up and down. “I will take them! I will take the other ten years!”
“You can have them,” says God to the man.
He turns to the donkey and says, “Now, I am going to give you twenty years of a good sex life. Is that all right with you?”
“To tell you the truth,” says the donkey, “I would also be satisfied with just ten.” God gives the man the other ten years too.
This story explains why a man has ten years of a good sex life, ten years of monkeying around, ten years of lying about it, and then ten years of making an ass out of himself.

We are not satisfied with anything, and we go on asking for more, and we go on making our life more of a confusion. It is true in every dimension of life – even when you start meditating, you are the same man, with the same mind. Your whole life you have been creating false, pseudo, dishonest, inauthentic experiences. You know perfectly well that they are not true, but at least you can deceive others.
But you don’t know a simple law: if you can deceive many people, you will be deceived in turn. By their being deceived, you will start thinking there must be something in it; otherwise, so many people cannot be deceived. Start telling a lie and by the evening – when your wife will tell it to you – it will have gone around the city. You know perfectly well that you started it in the morning. But if the whole city is agog about it, then perhaps there is something in it! Such is the madness of man that he can believe even in his own lies, and can believe so totally that you cannot suspect.

One man played the role of Abraham Lincoln continuously for one year. One hundred years had passed since Abraham Lincoln was assassinated, and in his honor and in his memory, a whole year was devoted to celebrate him. A drama was prepared, and all over America a great search was made to find a man who could play the part of Abraham Lincoln. Strangely enough, they managed to find a man who looked like him – the same height, the same weight.
They trained him. Abraham Lincoln used to stutter a little, so they trained him to stutter. One of Abraham Lincoln’s legs was a little longer than the other, so they put the poor fellow on a traction machine and pulled one leg a little longer so he started walking like Abraham Lincoln, with a walking stick in his hand.
For one year, morning, afternoon, evening, three times a day, he was playing the role. And he was doing it so perfectly that people were amazed: it seemed as if Abraham Lincoln had come back. A year is a long time. He became more and more perfect, and when the year ended, he was awarded the first prize.
He came home, but he continued to stutter. His wife said, “Now, there is no need to stutter.”
He said, “No need? What do you mean by no need? Abraham Lincoln has to stutter.”
The wife asked, “Who are you trying to fool?”
First, they thought that he was just joking, but then the joke went on so long; he would walk like Abraham Lincoln, he would talk like Abraham Lincoln. He would behave as if he were the president. Finally, they thought, “He has gone crazy. He believes it. Three hundred sixty-five days, three times every day, going through the same role…”
At that very time, scientists had discovered the lie detector machine. You sit on the machine – you don’t know; it is hidden underneath – and they ask you a few questions: a clock is hanging in front of you on the wall and they ask, “What time is it on the clock?” You cannot lie, you say, “It is ten o’clock” or “twelve o’clock.” And the machine goes on marking whether you are right or wrong. They go on asking a few more questions: “How many people are here?” Now, how can you lie? Four people are there, so you say “four” and the machine makes the point again – “right.” So four or five questions are asked about which you cannot lie. And then they asked him, “Are you Abraham Lincoln?”
He was tired. His family was after him, his friends were after him, he was being taken to this psychologist, to that psychologist…
And finally he had decided to drop this idea, to just accept what these idiots are saying. Although he is Abraham Lincoln, what to do? If nobody is ready to believe it, how long can he argue with these people? So when they asked, “Are you Abraham Lincoln?” he said, “No.”
And the machine said, “He is lying!” Because deep in his heart, he knew perfectly well – and the machine functions according to the heart. When you lie, your heartbeat loses its symmetry. When you say something true, the heartbeat goes on in the same rhythm, but when you lie, just a little jerk – and the machine catches that jerk.
And the poor man was saying, “I am not Abraham Lincoln” and the machine is saying he is! When the result came out, the scientist said, “Now, there is no way. Unless he gets assassinated, he will not understand.”

Don’t believe in this joy and in this peace that you are feeling. And don’t think that it is witnessing. It is not. I give you the criterion: in witnessing, there is nothing to witness. That is a simple criterion: as long as there is something to witness, witnessing has not come in.
When there is nothing to witness and only a pure awareness remains, just the mirror, not reflecting anything, you have found yourself. Of course this finding will radiate joy, but it will not be your experience. Others will experience it; to you, it will be just like breathing, just natural. You will be in constant ecstasy, but others will feel it. You will radiate a new presence, a new charisma, but others will feel it.
To you, it will be just like you accept your body, you accept your eyes, you accept your hair, you accept your hands; there is nothing special about it. The moment joy is no longer anything special, the moment peace is no longer anything to brag about, the moment ecstasy is just like breathing – you have arrived home.

Today, I had a unique experience. After siesta, I felt myself begin waking up. I opened my eyes and next to my head I saw my hand. I got my watch to look at the time but the watch was dark: there was no time. I turned the watch toward the window's light but – darkness again. I stood up and I felt the floor under my feet. But suddenly I saw my hand, unmovable, next to my head. I got scared. But immediately a voice inside told me, “You are dreaming, with open eyes!” I relaxed and decided to continue the game; looking at my hand, I could see my whole body moving. At the end, my hand was always at the same position. Then I decided to wake up and I moved my hand and my whole body. I think I experienced something of death. Would you please comment? If it happens again, can you suggest something for me to do?
It was nothing but a nightmare – not an experience, special and unique. Neither was it anything to do with death. It was just your mind. Everybody has experienced nightmares, dreams which are insane. But what happens more often is that you don’t remember them. In eight hours of sleep, you dream six hours, but you don’t remember six hours of dreaming. You remember only the last dream, when you are half awake and half asleep, just coming out of sleep. Your memory starts functioning and you catch hold of the last dream that is fleeting by.
If a nightmare happens in the morning hours, then there is a possibility that you may remember it. If it happens in the middle of the night, you will not remember it – unless it is really a nightmare; something like the concentration camps of Adolf Hitler, or the gas chambers of the Second World War. If it is too dangerous, then it can wake you up – just the very danger of it. But it has nothing to do with death.
It is just your mind which goes on collecting a thousand and one things, unnecessarily. It is a junkyard. You have seen a film in which there are dangerous scenes, you have read a novel in which there are murders and rapes and all kinds of crimes. You have been reading the newspaper every day. All this goes on collecting inside your mind, and in your sleep time, the mind wants to unload itself. Your dreams are nothing but an unloading of the mind. If you don’t collect unnecessary junk, you won’t have dreams.
I have not dreamed for years, and not to dream gives a different quality to your sleep. It is light and very sweet, almost musical – a poetry without any words, a meditation of immense silence and serenity. But your dreams say much about you. This kind of dream shows that you are collecting unnecessary information, and all that gets jumbled, piled up. And your unconscious is not very reasonable, it knows nothing of reason, so everything gets mixed up. These mixtures create nightmares.

It happened that Charles Darwin had become very old and his friend thought, “Perhaps this birthday is going to be his last; we will not be able to celebrate his next birthday.” He was feeling weak and doctors were saying that he could not last long. So all his students and all his friends gathered. And he was one of the most respected men of his times; he had given the theory of evolution which had helped humanity in many ways to grow.
He loved children very much, and the children of the whole neighborhood were thinking what to present him on his birthday. Finally, they decided on a novel idea.
Charles Darwin’s whole life was in studying animals, insects, birds, and he had gone around the world to study all kinds of species and how they have evolved up to man. He wanted to know each step. So the small children of his neighborhood, who were his friends, made a very beautiful present: they collected as many insects as they could find in his garden and they cut up those insects – some insect’s head, some other insect’s body, some other insect’s legs, some other insect’s other parts – they cut and glued many insects into one new insect. They did a really good job, and on the birthday when all his great scientist friends were there, they also came with their present and they said, “We would like to know to what species this insect belongs.”
Charles Darwin looked at it. In his whole life, he had never seen such a thing. He remembered that he had seen the head… He had seen the body, but not with this head. He had seen the legs, but not with this body.
But he was a genius. He said to the children, “Yes, I know this insect. Its name is humbug.”

Your mind creates many humbugs – a head from somewhere, a body from somewhere, legs from somewhere else, a tail from somewhere else. And then you have a ready-made nightmare. This is not what you are thinking – a “unique experience” – it is simply a humbug experience. And there is no need to be worried about such experiences. They are just dreams, soap bubbles.
But it is good to understand one’s mind, that you have made it just a wastepaper basket. You go on throwing anything into it. You never think, “Is this novel worth reading? Is this film worth seeing?” Whatever you see is going to be collected in your memory. You are not very intelligent about what kind of information should be allowed to enter your mind because that information is going to make your dreams; it can even affect your actions.
I have been reading data that in California, whenever there is a football match or a boxing match, crime rates rise up to fourteen percent higher, immediately. It takes seven days for them to come back down slowly to the average. And what kinds of crime rates? – murders, suicides, rapes. And not only young people but even children, seeing the boxing or seeing the football match, are getting a certain feedback and they start behaving in the same way.
In fact, you cannot make a successful film without murders, without racing cars at a dangerous speed, without suicides, without rapes. If you make a film without all these things, nobody is going to see it; it is going to be a flop. If you want it to be a full-house success, then make it as criminal, as ugly as possible. But you don’t know that you are feeding all that to the people who are seeing it.
And there are special blue films for rich people who can afford a theater in their own houses and can invite their friends to see sex orgies, perverted sexual scenes, pornography. But a simple thing is not understood: that all this is going inside your brain. You are poisoning yourself: your dreams will reflect it, your actions will reflect it. Your life will be molded by what you collect in your memory.
So if you come across such dreams, it is an indication that you have to be more careful of what goes in your mind, because it will come out in some way or other. In fact, it coming out through dreams is the most harmless way, because it does not harm anybody. But it can come out through your actions, too.

Stopping to pay a call on some of his suburban flock, the priest discovered they were having a party and offered to come back at a more convenient time.
“Don’t go,” implored the host, “we are playing a game you might like. We blindfold the women and then they try to guess the identity of the men by feeling their genitals.”
“How dare you suggest such a thing to a man of my dignity and stature!” roared the priest.
“You might as well play,” said the host, “your name has been guessed three times already.”

You are living in a society which is one thing from the outside and just totally different from inside. This is not just a joke. These kinds of games have been happening down the ages, but these were happening only at the highest level of society – the super-rich, the kings, the priests. They have a beautiful facade to show to the world. They will teach morality and they will teach everything against obscenity, pornography, but in their own life, hidden behind the curtains, totally different things are happening.
It is a very hypocritical world. In this world, to be interested in truth, to be interested in the search of your own being, should be conceived of as already a great blessing. A Sufi saying is that before you choose God, God chooses you. Before you begin to search for him, he has already started searching for you; you are always number two.
Even in this country which is poorest of the poor, there are ugly films, obscene films, pornographic magazines – and they exist because all the religions go on insisting on repression. So everybody goes to the temple, to the mosque, to the church to pay respect to God – but in his heart, in his mind, there is all kinds of crap.
If he is a little intelligent, he should not enter any temple, because he is carrying such crap inside him that he should not think himself worthy. He should just be outside the temple. The country may be poor; people cannot afford to eat, but still they will go to see a film. Hungry – but they cannot miss the film and its sexuality, its sensuality. And if you look into their dreams, you will find all that they have repressed, all that they have collected.

Ronald Reagan comes to God and asks, “Tell me, God, how many years before my people will be happy?”
“Fifty years,” God replies.
Reagan weeps and leaves.
Thatcher comes to God and asks, “Tell me God, how many years before my people are happy?”
“A hundred years,” replies God.
Thatcher weeps and leaves.
Rajiv Gandhi comes to God and asks, “Tell me God, how many years before my people will be happy?”
God weeps and leaves.

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