Question – What is the difference between being special and being unique?
Osho – BEING unique is everybody’s nature, being special is relative. When you start feeling that you are special you are comparing yourself with somebody. Special: in comparison to somebody; unique: there is no comparison. Unique means you are alone as you are – how can you be compared?
You cannot compare a car with an elephant. They are so different, how can you compare? Each individual is so different from any other individual that there is no possibility of comparing. Uniqueness is everybody’s nature, but specialness is comparative. Uniqueness is religious, specialness is political. When you claim that you are special you are claiming that you are higher, superior to others; that others are lower. inferior to you. You bring the other in when you use the word ’special’ and this is violent. To compare yourself with somebody in any way is violent because he is he and you are you and you are both so different. The very idea of comparing is stupid.
And through comparison misery arises: either you feel you are inferior, then there is misery, or you start feeling you are superior, then too there is misery. If you feel superior. ego arises – and ego hurts. If you feel inferior, ego is wounded – and those wounds hurt. And you may feel superior to one person but what about others? You may one day or other come across somebody to whom you feel inferior. With one person you may feel intelligent, with another you may look like a pygmy. With one you may feel beautiful, with another you may start feeling ugly.
To carry the idea of comparison you are carrying seeds of illness which will create misery and nothing else. Comparison creates hell. Heaven is an inner space where you live a life uncompared. You simply live yourself, it is your life, you are you just think of the beauty of it, the tremendous purity of it. You are simply you. Then are you beautiful? Are you ugly? Are you intelligent, or unintelligent? If you are simply you and there is no comparison, how can you say you are this or that? Then both disappear. There arises neti-neti, neither this nor that. Then you are simply there.
Just think… the whole world disappears and you alone are left. God takes away the whole world and only you are left, nobody else. Then what will you be – strong, weak, intelligent, unintelligent, beautiful, ugly? Then who will you be? All comparisons will disappear, you will simply be yourself. That is the way to be. Right now, be that! Don’t create unnecessary misery for yourself and for others. Start living a unique life.
Uniqueness is everybody’s nature. With the feeling of being special ambition enters, comparison enters, jealousy enters, conflict enters. You become political. Then you start pulling others down because you have to be superior. Then you start fighting, struggling, and then you start using all sorts of means. You have to prove and perform and your whole life is wasted in this nonsense.
Three ambitious politicians were walking along the beach, planning a strategic move to defeat a powerful rival, when they came upon Mulla Nasrudin looking for crabs. As each crab was caught, the Mulla put it into a wicker basket. Looking into the container, one of the politicians warned Nasrudin, ’Mulla, you should cover your basket. If you are not careful the crabs will climb out and run away.’
’Oh, I don’t need any cover,’ explained Nasrudin. ’These crabs are born politicians and if one crab tries to climb up, the others will pull him down.’
This is what is happening continuously in life. You are pulling others down, others are pulling you down, and the whole life is wasted in this unnecessary struggle. Just be yourself and you are unique. and that uniqueness is non-violent.
Never try to be special. In the very idea of being special you are feeling inferior. In the very idea of being superior to somebody or inferior to somebody you have lost contact with yourself, with your uniqueness. In that very idea you have become your own enemy. Now you will be in trouble, you will create more and more misery for yourself and for others, you will create ripples of misery all around you.
A man who simply relaxes in his uniqueness is a man who creates ripples of bliss around him. He lives in bliss and he creates pulsations of bliss for others also. If you are around such a person you will suddenly be showered with great peace and love and silence and happiness – because he is happy. The moment you accept your uniqueness, your individuality, how can you be unhappy?
Just think of it in this way: God has never created anybody else like you and he will never create anybody else like you. God has created only one you – only ONE you, mind – and he is never going to repeat you again. This is your uniqueness. Feel grateful, feel thankful. once you start comparing you feel ungrateful. Why has he created somebody more beautiful than you, or somebody more intelligent than you? You are bringing misery upon yourself. He has created only you, he has conferred uniqueness on you. It is a gift. Uniqueness is a gift of God, speciality is your own effort. Your effort is not going to be of much use, your doing always proves your undoing.
Ambitious persons become cruel and hard; ambitious persons become rock-like, they lose their softness, they become closed. Their heart is no longer like a flower. How can you be like a flower when you have to fight and struggle? And it is a very difficult world then – cut-throat competition everywhere. Everybody is at your neck and you are at everybody’s neck; everybody is trying to destroy you and you are trying to destroy everybody. Where will you find a creative break? Where will you find a break-through? Where will you enjoy and how?
No, all your moments of so-called joy will only be when you are able to crush somebody, when you are able to destroy somebody. But how can destruction bring joy? It is not the law of life. A grocer was delivering some groceries in his wagon one morning when he ran down and badly injured an old lady. The old lady sued him and collected big damages. A few weeks later he ran down an old gentleman. The old gentleman also sued and collected big damages, which almost ruined him.
One Sunday the grocer was sitting at home when his son came running through the door. ’Father! Father!’ the little boy cried. ’Mother’s been run over by a hundred-and-eighty-horsepower touring car.’
The grocer’s eyes filled with tears and, in a voice trembling with genuine emotion, he cried, ’Thank the Lord, the luck’s changed at last.’
His wife is dying on the road but he says, ’Thank the Lord, the luck’s changed at last.’ Now he call sue somebody and get all the money back.
An ambitious mind, a greedy mind, a jealous mind, becomes hard, stone-like. And remember, if you are stone-like you will hurt others – but that is only secondary, you ill he hurting yourself continuously. Only sometimes will your stone hurt others but your stoniness will hurt you continuously, twenty-four hours, day in, day out, year in, year out. The stone will be there in your heart pinching, hurting, wounding.
One is happy only when one is flower-like delicate. soft, a lotus: To remain a lotus one has to drop all Comparisons, all jealousies – and they are stupid anyway. meaningless .
Source – Osho Book “Tao: The Pathless Path, Vol 2″