That’s what everybody is aspiring to – to be the greatest in the world. Archer, painter, poet, politician, or you name it, but that is what mind aspires to: to be the greatest in the world.
Mind is an ego trip. The mind wants to stand in front of all. In fact, it IS NOT possible. Hence, mind ultimately leads into frustration. It is not possible to be first in the line because there is no line; we are standing in a circle. There is always somebody who is ahead of you.
There will always be somebody who is ahead of you. You cannot come to a point where you are the first man. Even those who become presidents and prime ministers and kings – even they are never the first. In fact, the moment they start feeling they are the first, they become aware of how impotent and helpless they are.
We are not standing in a queue, we are moving in a circle. Somebody is behind you, somebody is ahead of you. In fact, if you look deep, the one who is behind you is also ahead of you. If you see the whole circle, the man who is standing behind you, from the other end he is ahead of you. And the man who is standing in front of you, from the other end is behind you. It is a circle.
Life moves in circles, it is not linear. EVERYTHING moves in circles! Let this sink into your heart. Whenever you are thinking about any problem in life, always remain circular. It is not linear. The stars move in a circle, the earth moves in a circle, the seasons move in a circle. Childhood, youth, old age, move in a circle.
Everything moves in a circle. Linear movement is a mind construct, imaginary. In fact there are new mathematicians, new geometries – non-Euclidean geometries – which believe that you cannot draw a simple straight line. That’s not possible. A straight line is impossible to draw, because we ARE on a globe – the earth is round.
You can draw a straight line just in front of you on this floor. But it will not be really straight. If you go on drawing it from both the ends, one day it will become a circle around the earth. So when it was looking straight it was only a fragment of the big circle, it was an are – an incomplete circle, that’s all. It was not straight. Straight lines cannot be drawn.
Because straight lines don’t exist, Albert Einstein had to propound a very absurd thing: that space is curved. Straight lines cant exist, so space has to be curved.
Even space – which means nothingness – is curved, it is not straight. It is very difficult to conceive how nothingness can be curved. Something can be curved, but how can nothingness be curved? Nothing is nothing! How will the curve arise out of nothing? But Einstein is right. He says that when nothing exists as a straight line, then we cannot even conceive space as a straight line. It is curved.
Everything is a curve… so nobody ever comes to be the first. In fact, those who think they have come to be the first are the most frustrated men in the world. That’s why Buddha left his empire, became a beggar, recognizing the fact that “I seem to all apparent purposes to be the first, but I am not.”
Osho, Zen: The Path of Paradox, Vol 3, Ch 9 (excerpt)