WESTERN MYSTICS

The New Alchemy 06

Sixth Discourse from the series of 34 discourses - The New Alchemy by Osho.
You can listen, download or read all of these discourses on oshoworld.com.


The tenth sutra:
Desire power ardently.

And that power which the disciple shall covet is that which shall make him appear as nothing in the eyes of men.
We will be moving more and more into contradictions. The language of religion is bound to be contradictory. On the face of it, it looks irrational. In a way it is, because it goes beyond reason, it transcends reason. This sutra says: Desire power ardently – but that power which makes you nothing. You become a non-being.
We desire power to become something. The power that wealth can give, the power that politics can give, the power that prestige can give… We desire power to be something, and this sutra says: Desire power ardently – but that power which makes you nobody, nothing.
There are two types of power. One: that which you can accumulate from others – that which can be given to you by others or can be taken by you from others. It depends on others. The power that depends on others will make you somebody in the eyes of others. You will remain the same as you were, but in the eyes of others you will become somebody. This somebodyness is what is meant by the ego – and the ego is the barrier.
Desire that power – the second type – that allows you to feel that you are nobody. It is difficult to feel “I am nobody.” Everyone thinks that he is somebody, whether others agree or not. Everyone thinks that he is somebody. This is ordinariness: every ordinary mind thinks that he is somebody. The moment you come to realize that you are nobody, you have become extraordinary, rare, a unique flower, incomparable.
This feeling of nobodyness creates space within you.
The ego dissolves, your false center is no longer there. You have become roomy, now the eternal can enter you. Now, this space, this emptiness, can allow existence to flower in you.
You are filled with your somebodyness: you are this and that. The mind is so cunning that you can even create this somebodyness through nobodyness. I will tell you an anecdote:

An emperor, a Mohammedan emperor, was praying in the mosque on a religious day. He was talking to the divine and saying, “I am nobody. I am nothing. Have mercy on me.”
Then suddenly he heard a beggar who was also praying nearby. He was also saying, “I am nobody. Have mercy on me.”
The emperor felt offended. He looked at the beggar and said, “Listen, who is trying to compete with me? When I say ‘I am nobody,’ who else dares to say ‘I am nobody’? Who is trying to compete with me?”

You can be a competitor even in nobodyness. Then the point is missed. The emperor could not tolerate someone else claiming nobodyness for himself in front of him. When he is saying to God that he is nobody, he doesn’t mean that he is nobody. Through nobodyness he is creating somebodyness. You can create ego out of nothing also.
Remember that ego is power in the world; ego is impotence in the divine dimension. All that looks to be power in the world is impotence in the divine dimension. There, powerlessness is power.
Jesus goes on saying to his disciples, “Be poor, be poor in spirit.” Not only poor, because you can be poor without being poor in spirit. Then, even poverty will become a sort of richness. If you feel egoistic about it then your poverty is not poverty. It is not poverty in spirit.
So Jesus goes on repeating, “Be poor, be poor in spirit.” Otherwise you can be a beggar on the street – you have left everything – but now you cling to having left everything. You cling to it; you have made a richness out of your poverty. Now you are arrogant.
Look at sannyasins, monks, bhikkhus. Look in their eyes. They have a deep arrogance about having left the world, from having renounced. They have renounced the world, but now this renunciation has become a bank balance. They are arrogant about it, they feel superior because of it. When Jesus says, “Be poor in spirit,” he means don’t be superior to anyone. He doesn’t mean to be inferior, remember. This is the problem. He doesn’t mean be inferior because if you are inferior – if you feel that you are inferior – it is again superiority standing on its head, nothing else. Superiority standing on its head becomes inferiority. If you feel yourself inferior, there is a longing to be superior.
So when Jesus says, “Be poor in spirit,” he doesn’t mean, “Don’t be superior.” He means that, but he also means, “Don’t be inferior, just be yourself. Don’t compare yourself with others, just be at ease with yourself.”
Then you will be nobody, because somebodyness needs comparison. How can you be somebody if there is no comparison? You are more beautiful, never simply beautiful. You cannot be simply beautiful; you are always more beautiful in comparison to someone else. You are rich in comparison to someone else, you are more knowledgeable in comparison to someone else. Superiority and inferiority are always comparisons. You are somebody when compared to others. If there is no comparison then who are you? You cannot be just beautiful, can you? You cannot be just wise, can you?
Think about this: you are alone on earth and the whole of humanity has disappeared… What will you be? Wise or foolish? Beautiful or ugly? A great man or just an ordinary man? What will you be? Alone on the earth – the whole of humanity has disappeared – you will just be yourself. You will not be able to say “I am this or that.” You will not be anybody. You will be nobody.
Real sannyas, real renunciation means it is as if the whole universe, the whole of humanity, has disappeared and you are alone. There is no possibility to compare. Then who are you? – nobody. This nobodyness is power: power in the world of the divine.
Jesus says, “Those who are first in this world will be last in the kingdom of God, and those who are last here will be first in the kingdom of God.” That which is power in the world is powerlessness in the divine journey, and that which is powerlessness in the world is power in the divine journey.
This sutra says: Desire power ardently, but remember the meaning of power. It is powerlessness. It is a feeling of nobodyness, nothingness, of emptiness. And that power which the disciple shall covet is that which shall appear as nothing in the eyes of men.
The eleventh sutra:
Desire peace fervently.

The peace you shall desire is that sacred peace which nothing can disturb, and in which the soul grows as does the holy flower upon the still lagoons.
Desire peace fervently. No one desires peace. You go on talking about it, and go on deceiving yourself that you desire peace, but no one desires it – because once it is desired, peace happens. And that has not happened to you.
No one desires peace. Even if you say that you desire peace you don’t desire it, because this is one of the ultimate laws: if you desire peace it happens. Then where have things gone wrong?
Many people come to me…

A student came to me – he was just going to appear in his final MA examination. He asked me, “How can I be peaceful? How can I be silent? Help me. I desire peace. I am so disturbed, so tense.”
I asked him, “Why do you desire peace?”
He said, “I want to achieve the gold medal. The examination is about to happen. I am a first-class student but this is going to be my last examination, and I desire the gold medal. If my mind is so tense, how can I achieve it? So help me to be peaceful.”
Look at the contradiction! And this is what is happening to everyone.
I told him, “If there was to be no examination, if you had no desire to achieve the gold medal, if you had no ambition to be first-class first, would there be any disturbance within you? Would your peace be disturbed?”
He said, “No. Why should it be? Then there would be no problem. I would be at peace. But right now the examination is there and I desire the gold medal. So help me to be peaceful.”

Now, ambition is destroying his peace. He goes on clinging to his ambition – and still he desires peace. Peace in the service of ambition is impossible; peace in the service of ambition is contradictory. Ambition cannot be peaceful. The greed to succeed cannot be peaceful.
If you desire peace, desire peace for itself: don’t make it a means to something else. It cannot be made a means.
When this sutra says: Desire peace fervently, it means peace as an end, not peace as a means. No one desires means; ends are desired and, because of the ends, means are desired. But peace can never be made a means. All that is beautiful, all that is true, all that is good, all that is deep in existence cannot be made into a means – it is always the end. But we desire even God as a means. No one desires directly: we desire something else. Then the desire is false.
That’s what I mean when I say that no one desires peace unless he desires it for its own sake. You can attain it easily if it is desired as an end. Desire it for itself and it happens, because in the very desire for peace, ambition falls away; in the very desire for peace, anxiety disappears; in the very desire for peace, anguish disappears. But if you go on being ambitious – desiring success, desiring to be this or that, to be somebody – then peace will not happen to you. Then you will remain anxious, anxiety-ridden, tense. You will remain in anguish and whatever you do will not be of any help. So, be clear about it. If you want peace, desire it directly as an end. Then the very desire for peace transforms you.
Really, peace is natural. It is not something to be desired. You disturb it; it is already there. Peace is natural to you, it is your very being. You disturb it by ambition, you disturb it by greed, you disturb it by anger, you disturb it by violence. It is always there, but you have disturbed it.
Don’t disturb it! If you really desire it, you will not disturb it. Then you will feel it. To attain peace, one has to remove through negation. Just look at why you are not at peace. Why? Then, remove the cause. Find out why you are not at peace. If ambition is disturbing it, then remove the ambition and peace will happen. Peace is already there, you need not try for it. Just be aware of why you are disturbing it, and don’t disturb it, that’s all. And it will happen. That’s why I say that when peace is really desired it happens immediately. Not even for a single moment does one have to wait.
The twelfth sutra:
Desire possessions above all.
This sutra seems very dangerous: Desire possessions above all. Possessions? The very word will create a disturbance in your mind because all the great teachers have taught: don’t desire possessions. Buddha says, “Be nonpossessive.” Mahavira says, “Aparigraha: nonpossession.” Jesus says, “Leave all riches, all possessions.”
Jesus says, “It is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to pass through the gate of the kingdom of my God.” This sutra says: Desire possessions above all. But the sutra is beautiful. It means the same thing that Mahavira and Buddha and Jesus are saying, but it says it in a very contradictory way.
It says that all those things that you think are possessions are not possessions because you cannot really possess them. Can you possess things? Can you possess others? Can you possess anything in the world? You can only deceive yourself that you possess something. You cannot really possess anything because death will destroy everything.
Another thing: whatsoever you possess becomes your possessor. The possessor is possessed by his possessions. You become a slave, you are never the master. So what is the use of saying that you possess the world? No one possesses anything. Only one thing can be possessed and that is your own self. Nothing else can be possessed.
You can become master only of your own self.
If you try to be the master of someone else you will be just a slave. You may call this slavery mastery, you may label it mastery. You can deceive yourself, but deceptions are deceptions. Nothing is changed by just changing the label.
Look at your possessions, at whether you possess them. If your house is destroyed you will weep, you will scream, you will go mad; but if you die, your house is not going to weep, it is not going to go mad. So who was the real owner? The house owned you. It doesn’t care a bit about you, whether you live in it or not. Really it will feel very good if you leave; it will be more at ease. It is not dependent on you. You are just disturbing its peace. If you are dead the house will feel good. So who is the possessor?
This sutra is meaningful in this sense that only the self can be possessed and nothing else. And if you cannot possess yourself, what do you think you can possess? So be a master – the master of your own self – and don’t make any effort to possess anything.
I don’t mean to leave everything. That’s not the point. Use everything, but don’t think in terms of possessions. Use the house, but don’t be the owner. Use wealth, don’t be the owner of it. Use the whole world, but don’t think that you possess it. You are just a traveler passing through it. Tired, you rest under a tree. You don’t possess the tree, and if you don’t possess it, you will feel deep gratitude toward the tree. When you leave in the evening, you will thank it. You will feel gratitude because when you were tired and the road was hot, the tree gave you shade, the tree was cool. But don’t possess it, otherwise you will not feel gratitude.
When you possess, you don’t feel gratitude. Don’t possess your wife, don’t possess your husband. When you are tired, your wife gives you her love; feel grateful.
And if you don’t possess your wife, you will not be possessed by her. Relationship happens only when there is no possession. If there is possession, there is always conflict. Husbands and wives go on fighting – you cannot find more deeply related enemies. They are intimate enemies, they coexist just to fight with each other. The whole relationship is poisoned, just because the husband is trying to possess the wife and the wife is trying to possess the husband – and no one can possess anyone, possession is impossible!
You can only possess yourself. That’s all that is possible, everything else is impossible. But when one tries to do the impossible and to possess, everything goes wrong; the relationship is poisoned. Life becomes a misery.
All relationships are just like the tree. You are tired, and someone gives you love. You are miserable, and someone takes you close. Feel grateful, feel deeply grateful, but don’t try to possess. Possess yourself. Your life will become bliss if you possess yourself and don’t try to possess anyone else. Your life will become a hell if you don’t possess yourself and then try to possess the whole world.
Even if you are capable of creating the illusion that you possess the world you will not be happy. Only truth can make you happy – and this is the truth: no one can possess anything. Possession is the wrong dimension; it leads to hell, it leads to misery, it leads to nonsense, it leads to a poisoned life.
Desire possessions above all.

But those possessions must belong to the pure soul only, and be possessed therefore by all pure souls equally, and thus be the especial property of the whole only when united.
All those possessions must belong to the purest being within you, to the purest existence within you. Love, beauty, truth can be possessed; they belong to the purest being. But what is happening? – we try to possess a beautiful person, not beauty itself. Beauty can be possessed but you cannot possess a beautiful person. Beauty can be possessed because beauty is a quality of your own soul.
You cannot possess riches but richness can be possessed, because richness is a quality of the pure soul – not riches, richness.
A buddha is rich, incomparably rich. Look at a buddha passing through the streets begging. He has a begging bow – he is a beggar – but look inside: the earth has not seen again such a rich man. But his richness is part of his inner soul, he is rich not because of richness. He is rich because he possesses his soul. He is an emperor without an empire.

When Swami Rama went to America people were very puzzled because he used to call himself Emperor Ram – Ram Basha – and he was a beggar! The president of the United States came to meet him and asked, “But why do you call yourself an emperor, Ram Basha? Why do you call yourself an emperor?”
And Ram said, “Because I am – but without an empire. This kingdom is of the within. To you I look like a beggar but to myself I look like an emperor.
“And this kingdom is such that it cannot be destroyed, you cannot take it away. Alexander is nothing compared to me – because his kingdom is of the world and can be taken away. You cannot destroy my kingdom; even death cannot destroy it. It is my own self.”

Now be ready for the meditation.

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