Osho on Nicholas Roerich

Nicholas Roerich

Osho : One very great painter not much known in the West, although he was a Western man – he lived in the Himalayas. He was a Russian, Nicholas Roerich, and he belonged to the czar’s family. So while the revolution was happening and nineteen members of the czar’s family were slaughtered, even a six-month-old child – sometimes these revolutions can be so ugly – Nicholas Roerich escaped; he was just a boy at that time.

He lived in the Himalayas. He was a painter, but not a painter for art galleries and marketplaces. He never sold any of his paintings – not because people were not ready to purchase, but because he was not willing to sell. He said, “It is not a commodity, it is me spread on the canvas. How can I sell it?” He died with all his paintings in his house.

I have been to his house – he was very old at that time – and seeing that he was vegetarian, I asked, “You are a Russian, why should you be vegetarian?”

He said, “Because of my paintings. I cannot even destroy a painting, which is not alive. How can I destroy a living being for my food? And if I can destroy a lion or a tiger, then why not destroy a man?”

Because human meat will be more digestible, more in tune with you, what is wrong with the cannibal? Why is everybody against the cannibals? Just because they are eating human beings? But cannibals say human meat is very delicious. They say there is nothing so delicious on the earth as human meat, particularly the meat of small children.

If deliciousness and taste are decisive…. And perhaps they may be right, because they have eaten other foods also, and if they are saying it – and all cannibals agree…. But you can’t think of eating a man. How can you think of eating a tiger? How can you think of eating a deer? Just if there is no mind given to you by the past, or if you can put it aside and see directly, you will be simply amazed at what people have been doing.

Vegetarianism should not be anything moral or religious. It is a question of aesthetics: one’s sensitivity, one’s respect, one’s reverence for life. To me this is the law of karma. All other interpretations of it are absolutely wrong, just boo boo.

Source – Osho Book “From Personality to Individuality”

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