Question : CAN ONE WHO IS NOT ENLIGHTENED LIVE IN TOTAL INSECURITY AND NOT BE ANXIOUS, DEPRESSED AND MISERABLE?
Osho : Total insecurity and the capacity to live in it are synonymous with enlightenment. So one who is not enlightened cannot live in total insecurity, and one who cannot live in total insecurity cannot become enlightened. These are not two things, they are just two ways of saying the same thing. So don’t wait until you have become enlightened to live in insecurity, no! Because then you will never become enlightened.
Start living in insecurity – that is the way towards enlightenment. And don’t think about total insecurity. Start from where you are. As you are you cannot be total in anything, but one has to make a start. In the beginning it will create anxiety, in the beginning you will feel miserable – but only in the beginning. If you can pass the beginning, if you can tolerate the beginning, the misery will disappear, the anxiety will disappear.
The mechanism has to be understood. Why do you feel anxiety when you feel insecure? It is not because of insecurity, but because of the demand for security. When you feel insecure you feel anxious, anxiety arises. It is not arising because of insecurity, it is arising because of the demand to make life a security. If you start living insecurely and don’t demand security, the anxiety will disappear when the demand goes. The demand is creating the anxiety.
Insecurity is the very nature of life. It is an insecure world for a Buddha; for a Jesus it is also insecure. But they are not anxious because they have accepted the fact. They have become mature enough to accept a reality. This is my definition of maturity and immaturity. A person I call immature is one who goes on fighting against reality for fictions and dreams. This man is immature. Maturity means coming to terms with reality, throwing away dreams, and accepting the reality as it is. Buddha is mature. He accepts.
It is so. For example, although there is death, an immature person goes on thinking that everyone may die but he is not going to die. An immature person goes on thinking that by the time he dies something will be discovered, some medical elixir, which means he will not die. An immature person goes on thinking that it is not the rule to die. Of course, many have died, but in everything there are exceptions, and he goes on thinking that he is an exception.
Whenever someone dies you feel sympathetic, you feel, ”Poor man, he has died.” But it never comes to your mind that his death is your death also. No, you by-=pass it. You just don’t touch such delicate matters. You go on thinking that something or other will save you – some mantra, some miraclemaker guru. Something will happen and you will be saved. You are living in stories, children’s stories.
A mature person is one who looks at the fact and accepts that life and death are together. Death is not the end, it is the very peak of life. It is not something like an accident which happens to life, it is something which grows in the very heart of life. It grows and comes to a peak. So he accepts and then there is no fear of death. He accepts that security is not possible. You can create a facade, you can have a bank balance, you can donate much money to have some security in heaven, you can do everything, but deep down you know nothing is really secure.
The bank can cheat you, and no one knows that the priest is not a cheat, the greatest cheat. No one knows. They write letters…. In India, there is a Mohammedan sect, the head priest of which writes letters to God. You donate a particular amount of money and he will write a letter. The letter will be put with you in your tomb, in your grave. It will be put with you so you can produce the letter. The money goes to the priest, the letter goes with you. But nothing is secure.
A mature person comes to terms with reality, he accepts it as it is. he doesn’t demand. He is not a demander. He doesn’t say, ”It should be so.” He looks at the fact and says, ”Yes, it is so.” This coming to terms with reality will make it impossible for you to be miserable – because misery comes when you demand. Really, misery is nothing else than an indication that you are moving against reality. And reality cannot be changed by you, you will have to be changed by reality.
You will have to come to terms. You will have to yield. This is what the meaning of surrender is: you will have to yield. The reality cannot yield, the reality is as it is. Unless you yield, you will suffer. The misery is created by you because you go on fighting. It is just as if the current of a river is flowing towards the sea and you are trying to swim upcurrent. You feel the river is against you. The river is not against you. It has not even heard about you.
It doesn’t know you at all. The river is simply flowing to the sea. It is a river’s nature to flow to the sea, to move to the sea and to fall into it. You are trying to move upstream. And there may be some foolish fellows sitting or standing on the bank who go on inspiring you, ”You are doing well. You shouldn’t be worried because sooner or later the river will have to yield. You are simply great, go on doing it! Those who are great, they have won over the river.”
There are always foolish people who go on giving you inspiration, giving you more enthusiasm. But no Alexander, no Napoleon, no great man, no one has ever been able to go upstream. Sooner or later the stream takes over. But when you are dead, you cannot enjoy the bliss that was possible while you were alive; the bliss of surrendering, of accepting, of becoming so one with the stream that there is no conflict.
But those foolish people on the bank will say, ”You have yielded, you are defeated, you are a failure.”
Don’t listen to them, just enjoy the inner freedom that comes with yielding. Don’t listen to them. When Buddha stopped trying to flow upstream, all those that knew him said, ”You are an escapist. You are a failure. You have accepted defeat.” Don’t listen to what others say. Feel the inner feeling. Feel what is happening to you. If you feel good flowing with the stream, this is the way. This is Tao for you. Don’t listen to anybody, just listen to your own heart.
Maturity accepts, whatsoever there is. I have heard an anecdote. A Mohammedan, a Christian and a Jew were asked a question. The question was the same. Someone asked all three, ”What would you do if a tidal wave forces the ocean onto the land and you are drowned in it?”
The Christian said, ”I will make the sign of the cross on my heart, and pray to God to allow me into heaven, to open the doors.” The Mohammedan said, ”I will take the name of Allah, and will say that this is KISMAT, this is fate – and drown.”
The Jew said, ”I will thank God and accept his will and learn to live under water.”
This has to be done. One has to accept the will of existence, the will of the universe, and learn how to live in it. This is the whole art. A mature person accepts whatsoever is here, doesn’t demand, doesn’t talk about any heaven. The Christian was doing, he was asking, he was saying, ”Open the doors of heaven.” But he was also not a pessimist who simply accepts and is drowned.
The Mohammedan was doing that. The Jew accepted, welcomed rather, and said, ”This is the will, now I must learn how to live under water. This is God’s will.”
Accept the reality as it is and learn how to live in it with a yielding heart, with a surrendered ego.