September 08th, 1979 is the day when Osho’s father, Swami Devateerth Bharti lovingly called Dadda ji, left his body. Osho guided us to Celebrate 8th September every year as the “Mahaparinirvana Day”, a day dedicated to all His Sannyasins, Past, Present and Future, who have gone to the other shore.
Osho explains the meaning of the word MAHAPARINIRVANA. Osho says one day, one golden day, you will disappear and only the buddha will remain in place of you. That will be the greatest height of your blossoming, the greatest golden moment of your thousands of lives. Beyond that is only the cosmos. First, become the buddha. This is called nirvana. Then take a jump into the cosmos, and disappear into the blue sky. This is called Mahaparinirvana — the great enlightenment. The first is called enlightenment, the second is called the great enlightenment. Then you are not, even the buddha is not. Only the existence is, with all its glory, with all its majesty, with all its flowers blossoming, its beauty, its truth, its divineness spread all over the cosmos. Then you will become one with the whole, not part of the whole. To become one with the whole is the only holiness.
When asked to say something about his father’s death the subsequent day, Osho said it was not a death at all. Or it was total death. And both mean the same thing. I was hoping that he would die in this way. He died a death that everybody should be ambitious for: he died in samadhi, he died utterly detached from the body and the mind… … He left the world in utter silence, in joy, in peace. He left the world like a lotus flower – it was worth celebrating. And these are the occasions for you to learn how to live and how to die. Each death should be a celebration, but it can be a celebration only if it leads you to higher planes of existence.
Osho explains what He means by the term TOTAL DEATH. He says My effort here is to help you all to live like Buddhas and die like Buddhas. The death of a Buddha is both! It is not a death, because life is eternal. Life does not begin with birth and does not end with death. Millions of times you have been born and died; they are all small episodes in the eternal pilgrimage. But because you are unconscious you cannot see that which is beyond birth and death. As you become more conscious, you can see your original face. He saw his original face yesterday. He heard the one hand clapping; he heard the soundless sound. Hence it is not a death: it is attaining life eternal. On the other hand; it can be called a total death – total death in the sense that he will not be coming any more.
The man of the heart has no market value. He has immense value in himself but that value is not of the market; he cannot become a commodity. When people are poor what till you do with poetry and music, what will you do with painting and sculpture? When people are ill what are you going to do with poet? It cannot feed, it cannot give shelter, it cannot help as medicine.
Society is not interested in the values of the heart, its whole interest is in tile head, so society forces every child to move towards the head. Of course every child basically wants to move towards the heart because that is a natural and spontaneous phenomenon. But we have to divert him. We have to punish him, reward him, we have to create fear and the idea of profit in him, we have to persuade him towards that which is practical and utilitarian: Become a doctor, forget all about dancing; become an engineer, forget all about poetry; become a mathematician, forget all about music — those things are for mad people.
And when you force the child and condition the child… and society has great powers to condition. The schools, the colleges, the universities — they exist not for you, they exist for society, they serve society; they are agents of a particular establishment. And the whole process is a long process — it is twenty-five years at least by the time you become a Ph.D.; that means one third of your life. But once you are conditioned you completely forget about the heart. You by-pass the heart. The heart remains at the side, you go directly to the head, your energy starts shooting directly to the head. This is the misery.
I am not against science, not against mathematics. My observation is that there are people whose heart is in mathematics, then it is perfectly good. For example, Albert Einstein: his heart was in mathematics so it was not a head question for Albert Einstein, it was his love affair. But to force every child is ugly. It is a calamity, it is coercion, it is violence. Just think of a society where every child is forced to become a poet. It would be good for a Shakespeare, good for a Shelley or a Byron, but what about everybody else? If everybody has to be forced and trained to be a poet they will not be poets; their heart will not be in it. They will be just third-rate or even fourth-rate people, their whole life will be of misery.
Just think of Albert Einstein being forced to become a poet, then you will understand what is happening. He will never be a first-class poet — that much is certain. He can be a first-class mathematician, he will be a fourth-rate poet, or even that may be difficult. He will remain miserable for his whole life. That is what is happening. If your heart is in something then for you it is perfectly beautiful, but it has to be a natural phenomenon, a spontaneous urge. Then whatsoever it is you will rejoice, your heart will feel victorious, your life will have a splendour and glory and you will feel that your life has been of tremendous fulfilment. But society exists in a kind of regimentation; everybody has to be forced into a certain thing. So for a few people it is good but for the majority it is destructive. To ninety-nine per-cent of people society is destructive, all societies are the same in that way. And we have not yet been able to create a society where everybody is given the opportunity to be himself or herself — respected, valued and not forced to be somebody else.
A sannyasin has to just be his or her own self, whatsoever the consequences, then even to live a poor life is very rich because your heart is in it. If your heart is not in it you may become the richest person in the world but you will be very poor because you will not rejoice in it. Just think of Albert Einstein becoming a Rockefeller; his heart will not be in it. Or Bernard Shaw becoming a Ford; his heart will not be in it. Or Picasso becoming Adolf Hitler; his heart will not be in it, he will be utterly miserable. A thousand and one times he will think to commit suicide, and if he does not commit suicide he will go mad.
Everybody has brought a certain duality with his birth and that quality has to grow. Meditation helps you to find your natural urge, your intuitive feel. Meditation simply means a state of no-thought, so there is no disturbance, so your inner world is completely empty and you can see and search for where your heart is. The moment you have felt the heartbeat, the moment you have found your inner pulse, then you are on the right track. Then whatsoever you do will bring joy to you and ultimately god is yours. But it is only through the heart, never otherwise…
One should go on deeper and deeper into the phenomenon of love and at the ultimate core god will be found. But that is not to be made much of a concern, because once god becomes your concern you start going astray because you start forgetting about love; you start thinking about god, believing in god, worshipping god. And that is all false because you don’t know god at all.
The same is not true about love. You know something, everybody knows something about love. Love is a natural phenomenon. Of course it needs great refinement, it is very crude; it is like a raw diamond. But the diamond is there, you just have to become a little bit of a jeweller. You have to learn how to polish it, how to cut it, how to make it shine — and that is not very difficult.
Once you have discovered the inner beauty of the diamond and you have cut away all that was unessential, you have found god.
Love is like a raw diamond and god is a fully polished, cut, shining diamond. But your concern should be with love because the journey begins in love and ends in god, and you cannot begin at the end.
That’s where all the religions have gone wrong: they begin at the end — how can you begin at the end? You have to begin from the very beginning.
So all religions have become theologies. Theology means logic about god. That is sheer stupidity, there is no logic about god. God is the most illogical phenomenon. It is as illogical as love. Is there any logic in love? You fall in love with somebody — what logic is there? If somebody insists “Why?”, you can only shrug your shoulders, that’s all. You can only say it has happened; it is a happening, not a doing. It is something bigger than you, hence it is incomprehensible. And it is not of the mind, it is of the heart, so the mind knows nothing about it. The mind condemns it, the mind calls it falling in love. Mind the word “falling”, it is a condemnatory word. The mind says you have fallen, you are no more in your senses, you have gone a little bit cuckoo. It is a condemnation. And all the languages of the world have such words, about this they all agree.
I don’t agree. I say rising in love, not falling in love, because the heart is a higher centre than the mind. Of course physiologically the mind seems to be at the top and the heart seems to be in the middle, a little below. It is only physiologically so. But the heart is at the innermost core because the most precious thing is always kept at the core, at the inner centre, and the head is on the periphery. Just think that way then the total evaluation changes; then the heart becomes the centre and the mind is just something on the periphery, on the circumference. And when you have great treasure you don’t keep it outside, on the circumference of your house; you keep it hidden deep in the innermost chamber of your house. The heart is your inner chamber where all that is beautiful and great is hidden. Jesus calls it the kingdom of god. It is within you. It has to be discovered — not by logic.
Logic is good for discovering things. It is good for scientific enquiry, it is absolutely impotent in subjective enquiry. For subjective enquiry you need a totally different method — that is love. It is only through love that you will become aware of beauty, not through logic. It is only through love that you will become aware of bliss, not through logic. It is only through love that you will become aware of god, not through logic. All that is significant is discovered through love and all that is insignificant, mundane, is discovered by logic. Logic is good as far as it goes but it does not go far enough, it has a limitation. Love has no limitations. It is as vast as the sky, or even vaster.
I teach only one thing and that is love. Love unconditionally, love for the sheer joy of loving, for no other motive. Love people, love animals, love birds, love trees, rocks, stars. Don’t miss any opportunity to love. Whatsoever is available shower your love on it, because the more you shower your love, the more love grows in you. The more you share, the more you have, the more you give, the more you have — that’s why I say it is a very illogical phenomenon.
Logic will not agree with it. How can logic agree with the statement that the more you give, the more you have? It will say of course you will have less. If you give that much has to be deduced, you will have less. If you have ten rupees and you give away five you have only five left.
Love is illogical. It says if you have ten rupees, give ten and you have twenty. And all the great masters are absolutely in agreement with it. It is meta-economics. It is something like a higher mathematics, not comprehensible by lower mathematics of the mind.
To enquire into love is the only purpose of life. Life is an opportunity to enquire into love.
People go on accumulating money, power, prestige — these are the fools. Death will knock at their door any moment and all their money and all their power and prestige will collapse. They came empty-handed and they will go empty-handed. Only a lover goes so full. He comes empty-handed but goes very full, overflowingly full. His death is a celebration; his life is a celebration — his death is the crescendo of his life.
At the moment of death when a man like Buddha or Jesus or Socrates dies, his death is the ultimate in sharing because this is his last moment on earth, his goodbye to existence. He gives totally and in that total giving he receives god as a guest. Buddha has used two words. When a person starts moving into the world of love, becomes loving, he calls it nirvana. The word “nirvana” means cessation of the ego — and of course, when the ego ceases one becomes loving. And when such a person dies Buddha calls it mahaparinirvana, the great nirvana, because then he gives totally. We gives his body, his mind, his heart, his life — he gives everything back to existence. He simply disappears into nothingness. His giving is absolute, nothing is retained. He simply evaporates, he is no more. He has not kept anything, not even himself; hence Buddha calls it the great cessation.
These are the two Moments which are the most valuable: the first is nirvana when you become loving and you start sharing and the ego disappears, and the second is the great nirvana — that is when death comes; you give totally, nothing is left behind, not even a trace.
And that is the moment when one becomes part of god or part of the whole. And to be part of the whole is the only way to be holy. To be whole is to be holy. Except for love there is no way to attain to this infinity, to this eternity.
This is an excerpt from the transcript of a public discourse by Osho in Buddha Hall, Shree Rajneesh Ashram, Pune.
Discourse Series: Just the Tip of the Iceberg
Chapter title: None
29 September 1980 pm in Chuang Tzu Auditorium
Osho has spoken on ‘Mahaparinirvana, Nirvana, Death, Wholeness, Holy’ in many of His discourses. More on the subject can be referred to in the following books/discourses:
- The Path of the Mystic
- Hsin Hsin Ming: The Book of Nothing
- Vedanta: Seven Steps to Samadhi
- Walking in Zen, Sitting in Zen
- Yoga: The Alpha and the Omega, Vol 2
- I Am That
- Vigyan Bhairav Tantra, Vol 1
- The Golden Future
- Zen: The Path of Paradox
- Come Follow To You Vol.1-4
- Bodhidharma: The Greatest Zen Master
- Nirvana: The Last Nightmare
- The Tantra Vision, Vol 1, 2