Osho on holistic approach to life

Question – Many see the work that goes on around you as a model for the holistic approach to life. Please talk about this.

Osho – Krishna Prem, the old man is dying. And it is good news that the old man is on his deathbed, because the new can be born only when the old is gone, utterly gone. The old has to cease. The old has existed long, and the old man has been a curse, because he was rooted in very stupid conceptions of life.

The old man was based on superstitions. The most basic flaw in the concept of the old man was perfectionism: he wanted to be perfect, and the very idea of perfectionism drives people crazy. The perfectionist is bound to be a neurotic, he cannot enjoy life till he is perfect. And perfection as such never happens, it is not in the nature of things. Totality is possible, perfection is not possible.

That is the fundamental of the holistic approach. And there is a tremendous difference between perfection and totality. Perfection is a goal somewhere in the future, totality is an experience herenow. Totality is not a goal, it is a style of life. If you can get into any act with your whole heart, you are total. Totality brings wholeness and totality brings health and totality brings sanity.

The perfectionist completely forgets about totality. He has some idea how he should be, and obviously time will be needed to reach that idea. It can’t happen now — tomorrow, day after tomorrow, this life, maybe next life… so life has to be postponed. That’s what the old man has been doing hitherto, postponing, postponing. The man in the past has not really lived; his life was nothing but a sequence of postponements.

I teach you to live herenow with no idea of the future at all. The future will be born out of your lived present. If the present has been lived totally, the future will have even more totality to it. Out of totality more totality is born. But if you have an idea what you want to be in the future, today you will live very partially because your main concern becomes the future. Your eyes become focused on the future, you lose contact with the real and the present — and the tomorrow will be born out of the real with which you are not in contact. The tomorrow will come out of today,
and today was unlived.

The English word devil is very beautiful. If you read it backwards it becomes lived. That which is lived becomes divine, and that which is not lived becomes devil. Only the lived is transformed into godliness; the unlived turns poisonous. Today you postpone, and whatsoever remains unlived in you will hang around you like a weight. If you had lived it you would have been free of it. It would not have haunted you, it would not have tortured you.

But man up to now has been taught not to live but to hope — hope that tomorrow things will be such that you will be able to live, hope that tomorrow you will be worthy to live, hope that tomorrow you will be Jesus Christ or Gautama the Buddha. You are never going to be Jesus the Christ or Gautama the Buddha, you are simply going to be yourself. You are not a carbon copy of anybody else. It would have been ugly to be another Christ or another Buddha; that would have been a great insult to your humanity. Man has dignity because man has originality.

The old concept was to live according to a certain pattern — the Buddhist pattern, the Christian pattern, the Hindu pattern. The old was not in favor of the individual, it was in favor of a certain pattern. That pattern creates slavery. I teach the individual, I teach the unique individual. Respect yourself, love yourself, because there has never been a person like you and there never will be again. God never repeats. You are utterly unique, incomparably unique. You need not be like somebody else, you need not be an imitator, you have to be authentically yourself, your own being. You have to do your own thing.

The moment you start accepting and respecting yourself you start becoming whole. Then there is nothing to divide you, then there is nothing to create the split. Hitherto, man has been schizophrenic. And I am not saying that a few people have been schizophrenic: the whole humanity has been schizophrenic. Leave a few exceptions — a Krishna, a Lao Tzu
here and there — you can count them on your fingers. They don’t constitute humanity, they are exceptions, and the exceptions only prove the rule. But the greater part of humanity has lived a schizophrenic life, a divided life, fragmentary.

And how did man become so split? First thing: you are not acceptable as you are, so reject yourself. Rather than respecting yourself, reject yourself; rather than respecting yourself, respect some idea, some imaginary idea, of how you should be. Don’t live the real, try to live the “should” — and then you are split, you have become two. You are that which you are, but that you reject, repress. And you want to be that which you are not, and that which you are not you love and you respect and you worship. You have become two.

Not only that you have been split in two, you have been made many — because you were taught that the body is your enemy, that you have to get rid of the body. You were taught that many things in you have to be cut off, that you are not as you should be, that great changes have to be done. Naturally you started rejecting your sex, you started rejecting your desires, you started rejecting your anger. And all these rejected parts are energies to be transformed. They are not your enemies, they are friends in disguise.

Anger transformed becomes compassion, sex transformed becomes prayer, greed transformed becomes sharing. But in the past it was told again and again, repeated down the ages, that you had to reject this, reject that. If you listen to the old teachings you will be surprised — you are rejected almost ninety-nine percent. Only one percent, some imaginary soul of which you are not aware at all, is accepted in you. And all that you are aware of is rejected.

These fragments do not allow you to become one piece, and unless you become one piece there is no peace possible. Unless you are a togetherness, integrated, crystallized, you will not know what God is — because God speaks only to those who are real, God speaks only to those who are not a crowd, not noisy.

When there are many in you, you are a crowd, and the crowd is noisy. When you become one, there is silence. Only by becoming one will you attain to silence, and in that silence you can hear the voice of God, in that silence you can start feeling the presence of the divine. And when you are one, you will be able to have a communion with the whole. By being a whole yourself, you become capable of having a communion with the whole.

Man has lived very partially — in fragments, in guilt, in fear. A new man is needed, urgently needed. Enough is enough: say goodbye to the old man. The old has created only wars, violence; it has created sadists, masochists, it has created a very ugly human being. It has made people pathological, it has not allowed a natural, healthy, sane
humanity to be born.

Just the other day, somebody asked, “Who is a masochist and who is a sadist?” A masochist is a person who loves to have a cold shower every morning, but takes instead a warm one. And the sadist is a person who, if asked by a masochist, “Please, please, hit my head hard,” says “No!”

People are torturing themselves and torturing others in every possible way. In the name of religion, in the name of morality, in the name of nationality, people are torturing each other, killing each other. Beautiful names have been found for very pathological, insane things. Insanities are called “nationalities,” insanities are called “moralities” — beautiful labels on very ugly things.

But it is time that we get rid of it all. And if we don’t get rid of it all soon enough, then the cup will be full. Man is going to die if the new does not arrive; the old cannot survive. There is no possibility for the old to survive, it has come to its tether’s end. It has lived more than expected.

I teach you a new man, a new humanity, which will not think of the future and which will not live with shoulds and oughts, which will not deny any natural instinct, which will accept its body, which will accept all that is given by God with deep gratitude. Your body is your temple, it is sacred. Your body is not your enemy. It is not irreligious
to love your body, to take care of your body — it is religious. It is irreligious to torture your body and to destroy it. The religious person will love his body because it is the temple where God lives.

You and your body are not really two, but the manifestation of one. Your soul is your invisible body, and your body is your visible soul. I teach this unity, and with this unity, man becomes whole. I teach you joy, not sadness. I teach you playfulness, not seriousness. I teach you love and laughter, because to me there is nothing more sacred than love and laughter, and there is nothing more prayerful than playfulness.

I don’t teach you renunciation, as it has been taught down the ages. I teach you: Rejoice, rejoice, and rejoice again! Rejoicing should be the essential core of my sannyasins. Yes, Krishna Prem, my approach to life is holistic, because to me, to be whole is to be holy.

Source – Osho Book “The Book of Wisdom”

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