Oscar Ichazo (Arica School)
Question : Ichazo reckons that our culture, the whole society, is now raising its consciousness, that we are no longer on an individual trip but that humanity is beginning to awaken. And he says that the utopian vision of humanity as one enormous family is now a practical necessity.
Osho : This is how politics enters into religion. And this is nothing new. Down the ages there have been people saying it again and again. This is how fascism enters into religion. This is what Friedrich Nietzsche was saying and he became the originator of Adolf Hitler and his philosophy. He way saying that now humanity had come to a point where it was going to enter into a new arena, the arena of super-humanity, superhumans.
This is what Sri Aurobindo was saying in India — he was basically a politician and he remained a politician to the very end. He was also saying that now we had come to a point where collective effort, not individual effort, was needed.
Remember that these ideas about collective effort are dangerous. That’s how politics enters into religion. Religion is utterly individual and will remain individual. Only the individual can meditate. When you meditate you disappear from the collective world. If you start meditating here with five hundred people you may start with five hundred people but the moment you enter into meditation you are alone. Those four hundred and ninety-nine are no more. Meditation is a movement in tremendous aloneness. It has nothing to do with the collective. You can meditate together but when you go into meditation you go alone.
Three words will have to be understood: the collective, the individual and the universal. Ichazo goes on getting confused between the universal and the collective. The individual is in the middle, the collective is below the individual, and the universal is above the individual. If the individual becomes part of collectivity, he loses something, he is no longer as conscious as he was before, he is no longer alert.
That’s why in a crowd you are no longer as responsible as you were when you were alone. A crowd can commit great sins. In a crowd you don’t feel responsibility. The collective is lower than the individual — all the great sins of history can be attributed to the collective. The individual is far better than the collective.
You see a mob burning a Hindu temple or a Mohammedan mosque. If you get each individual from the mob and enquire, he will say, ‘I did not really want to do it but other people were doing it and I was just standing there so I got into it.’ No individual Mohammedan will be able to say with a clear heart that he has done a great thing, a great job, a religious thing, in burning a Hindu temple. And no Hindu will say that he has done a great thing by killing a Mohammedan or by burning a mosque. But he will say that in the crowd he was lost.
You may have also felt it. In a crowd you become lower than you ordinarily are. In a crowd you become baser, you become lower; you are more animal than you are human. The collective is animal, the individual is human and the universal is divine. When a person enters into meditation he does not become a part of the collective, he becomes dissolved into the universal which is a higher point than the individual itself.
But politicians always talk about the collective. They are always interested in changing the society — because in changing the society, in making efforts to change the society and the structure of society and this and that, they become powerful. The society has never been changed. It remains the same — the same rotten thing. And it will remain the same unless it is understood that all consciousness happens in the individual. And when it happens, the individual becomes universal. If it happens to many individuals then the society is changed — but not as a social thing, not collectively.
Let me explain it to you. There are five hundred people here. You cannot be changed as a collective unit, there is no way. You cannot be made divine as a collective unit, there is no way. Your souls are individual, your consciousnesses are individual.
But if out of these five hundred people, three hundred people become transformed, then the whole collective will have a new quality. But these three hundred people will go through individual changes, through individual mutations. Then the collective will have a higher consciousness because these three hundred people are pouring their consciousness into the collective, they are there. When one man becomes a Buddha, the whole existence becomes a little more awakened — just by his presence. Even if he is a drop in the ocean then too the ocean, at least as far as one drop is concerned, is more alert, more aware. When that drop disappears into the ocean it raises the quality of the ocean.
Each individual being transformed changes the society. When many, many individuals are changed, the society changes. That is the only way to change it, not the other way round. You cannot change the society. If you want to change the society directly your effort is political. Ichazo must be getting political. It happens. When you start becoming powerful religiously, when you start leading many people, when you become a leader, then great ideas start happening in the mind. Then the mind says that now the whole humanity can be changed, now we should plan for a great change of the whole humanity. Then greed grows, ambition grows, ego expects. This has always happened and this will happen always. Beware of it.
Never become a victim of the idea of the collective; the collective is lower than you. You have to become universal. The universal is not social, the universal is existential. You have to fall in tune with the whole existence, you have to get hooked with the dance of the universe — not with the social, not with small communities or sects, not with Christians and Hindus and Mohammedans, not with this earth, not with the East, not with the West, not with this century. You have to get hooked with the whole of it, the whole existence.
But that is higher than the individual. The mass is a pitfall. The mob is always there to pull you down. And it happens to so-called religious people. Ichazo is not really very religious to me. He has gathered techniques from here and there, he is very eclectic. From Gurdjieff’s work, from Sufis, h