Osho on Sannyasin and Alertness

Osho – Each sannyasin will be a totally unique person. I am not interested in the society. I am not interested in the collectivity. My interest is absolutely in individuals — in you! And meditation can succeed where mind has failed, because meditation is a radical revolution in your being — not the revolution that changes the government, not the revolution that changes the economy, but the revolution that changes your consciousness, that transforms you from the noosphere to the christosphere, that changes you from a sleepy person into an awakened soul. And when you are awakened, all that you do is good.

That’s my definition of ‘good’ and ‘virtue’: the action of an awakened person is virtue, and the action of an unawakened person is sin. There is no other definition of sin and virtue. It depends on the person — his consciousness, his quality that he brings to the act. So sometimes it can happen that the same act may be virtuous and the same act may be sinful. The acts may apparently be the same, but the people behind the acts can be different.

For example, Jesus entered into the temple of Jerusalem with a whip in his hand to throw out the moneychangers. He upset their moneychanging boards. Alone, singlehandedly, he threw all the moneychangers out of the temple. It looks very violent — Jesus with a whip, throwing people out of the temple. But he was not violent. Lenin doing the same thing will be violent, and the act will be sinful. Jesus doing the same act is virtuous. He is acting out of love; he cares. He cares about these moneychangers too! It is out of his care, concern, love, awareness, that he is acting. He is acting drastically because only that will give them a shock and will create a situation in which some change is possible. The act can be the same, but if a person is awake the quality of the act changes.

A sannyasin is a person who lives more and more in alertness. And the more there are people who exist through awareness, the better the world that will be created. Civilization has not yet happened.

It is said that somebody asked the Prince of Wales, “What do you think about civilization?” And the Prince of Wales is reported to have said, “It is a good idea. Somebody is needed to try it. It has not happened yet.”

Sannyas is just a beginning, a seed of a totally different kind of world where people are free to be themselves, where people are not constrained, crippled, paralyzed, where people are not repressed, made to feel guilty, where joy is accepted, where cheerfulness is the rule, where seriousness has disappeared, where a nonserious sincerity, a playfulness has entered. These can be the indications, the fingers pointing to the moon.

First: an openness to experience. People are ordinarily closed; they are not open to experience. Before they experience anything they already have prejudices about it. They don’t want to experiment, they don’t want to explore. This is sheer stupidity!

A man comes and wants to meditate, and if I tell him to go and dance, he says, “What will be the outcome of dancing? How can meditation come out of dancing?” I ask him, “Haveyou ever danced?” He says, “No, never.” Now this is a closed mind. An open mind will say, “Okay. I will go into it and see. Maybe through dancing it can happen.” He will have an open mind to go into it, with no prejudice. This man who says, “How can meditation happen out of dance?” — even if he is persuaded to go into meditation, he will carry this idea in his head: “How can meditation happen out of dance?” And it is not going to happen to him. And when it does not happen, his old prejudice will be strengthened more. And it has not happened because of the prejudice.

This is the vicious circle of the closed mind. He comes full of ideas, he comes readymade. He is not available to new facts, and the world is continuously bombarded with new facts. The world goes on changing and the closed mind remains stuck in the past. And the world goes on changing, and every moment something new descends into the world. God goes on painting the world anew again and again and again, and you go on carrying your old, dead ideologies in your heads.

So the first quality of a sannyasin is an openness to experience. He will not decide before he has experienced. He will never decide before he has experienced. He will not have any belief systems. He will not say, “This is so because Buddha says it.” He will not say, “This is so because it is written in the Vedas.” He will say, “I am ready to go into it and see whether it is so or not.”

Buddha’s departing message to his disciples was this: “Remember”… and this he was repeating for his whole life, again and again; the last message also was this — “Remember, don’t believe in anything because I have said it. Never believe anything unless you have experienced it.”

A sannyasin will not carry many beliefs; in fact, none. He will carry only his own experiences. And the beauty of experience is that the experience is always open, because further exploration is possible. And belief is always closed; it comes to a full point. Belief is always finished. Experience is never finished, it remains unfinished. While you are living how can your experience be finished? Your experience is growing, it is changing, it is moving. It is continuously moving from the known into the unknown and from the unknown into the unknowable.

And remember, experience has a beauty because it is unfinished. Some of the greatest songs are those which are unfinished. Some of the greatest books are those which are unfinished. Some of the greatest music is that which unfinished. The unfinished has a beauty.

Source – Osho Book “The Heart Sutra”

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