Osho on Buddhas and truth

Question – Osho, Why do all buddhas say the same thing?

Osho – Vinod, Truth is one. Even if it is said differently, it is the same truth. Languages may differ, metaphors may differ parables may differ, but if you really look a little deep, then all parables, all languages, all metaphors, culminate in one truth. TRUTH is one — what can Buddhas do? Although each Buddha speaks in his own way, and his expression has HIS signature on it. His expression is just his and nobody else’s. But still those who can see will always find that it is the same diamond — maybe we have been shown only one
aspect of it by Krishna, another aspect by Christ, still another by Mohammed, but those are aspects of the same diamond.

The diamond is one, this universe is one — and all the Buddhas have been saying the same thing, in different languages, in different ways. Those differences come from their individualities, not from their experience. The moment of experience is wordless, the moment of experience is thoughtless. So when Buddha experienced it, it was the same purity of consciousness as when Jesus experienced it.

Two purities cannot be different; two impurities can be different. Two healths cannot be different; two diseases can be different. Two silences cannot be different; two noises can be different. The truth is known in silence, but you cannot utter It in silence — you have to use words, language, noise. And immediately… when Buddha speaks, he speaks in Pali; that is the language that he knows, that is his mother tongue. And Jesus speaks in Aramaic; that is his mother tongue. If Jesus and Buddha had met, they would not have understood each other’s language at all, but they would have looked into each other’s eyes and would have understood each other TOTALLY!

A Sufi story: Mulla Nasruddin is sitting in the village square one evening plucking the strings of a sitar. Little by little, an expectant circle of villagers gathers around him. He keeps on playing just one note. Finally, one villager enquires, “That’s a very nice note you are playing, Mulla, but most musicians use all the notes. Why don’t you?”
“Those donkeys,” retorts the Mulla, “they are searching for the note, but I have found it!”

Truth is one — when you have found it you can go on repeating it, you can find different ways to repeat it, unique ways to express it, you can devise your own methods. And there are many methods devised — because of the compassion of the enlightened ones. Strange methods, very contradictory to each other.

If you go to a Sufi saint, he will be very polite to you, he may even touch your feet — because the Sufis respect God in all forms. That is their device. When a Sufi Master touches your feet… just think of that moment, contemplate over the moment — a Bahauddin, or a Jalaluddin, or a Farid — great Masters! diamonds of the purest water. A Bahauddin touching your feet, it is a device. In that moment when Bahauddin touches your feet, you are BOUND to fall silent, howsoever noisy your mind. Bahauddin touching your feet!? A great silence will descend on you. Bahauddin is giving you a taste of his meditation in this way; this is his device.

And a Zen Master is just the opposite: you go to him, you have to bow down seven times. And you ask some innocent question… and he jumps on you, hits you on the head — so unexpectedly. A very different device, but just think: a Bodhidharma, a Rinzai, a Bokoju, jumping on you, hitting on your head! For a moment all thinking stops… so unexpected. And you had asked a simple question: “Is there a God?” and he became furious. And you cannot figure it out — why? And he gives you no time to figure it out; he gives you no time to escape either.

It happened once that when Bokoju met his Master and asked something about Buddha, the Master took him physically and threw him out of the window… from a three-storey building. The poor fellow fell down on a rock, smashed, and the Master was looking from the window and he asked, “Do you understand now?” And the whole ridiculousness of it!

And the silence of the garden. And the silence of the accident. The shock. And the Master’s smiling face, and those compassionate eyes, and his asking, “Now do you understand?”
And in that moment, Bokoju became enlightened. He said, “Yes, yes, Master. Can I come in and touch your feet in gratitude?”

“You are welcome,” the Master said, “to have a cup of tea with me.”
And they are sipping tea together.

Something immensely valuable has happened. In that moment, in that dangerous moment, when you are falling, it is almost as if you are going to die — you are finished. How can you think? In dangerous moments thinking stops. When you come across a snake, suddenly thinking stops. You don’t decide to jump out of the way, remember — you jump FIRST and then you decide, then you think it over, then you can afford to think
it over. But you jump first!

Gurdjieff used to say that mind is very slow in action, and he is right. The body is far quicker. Mind is very lethargic; it goes on round and round in circles. So whenever there is some urgency, then your existence does not allow your mind to go round and round through logical processes to come to a conclusion, because then it will be too late.

By the time you have decided…. For example, if a snake is passing by and you give it to the mind, then there is trouble. First the mind will say, “Ninety-seven percent of snakes are non-poisonous, so there are only three chances out of a hundred that this snake is poisonous. A hundred persons who are bitten by snakes, they don’t all die; only five percent die, ninety-five percent are saved. And those five persons who die, maybe they were going to die anyway. So what is the hurry? Why bother? And one has to die one

And great philosophical ideas about death and the immortality of the soul…. And snakes don’t care about these things! They are absolutely non-philosophical; they won’t give you that much time. The snake may strike you before you have come to any conclusion. Gurdjieff is right: he says whenever there is any urgency, the body immediately takes over from the mind; it does not give mind any chance to do — it does it on its own. The body has its own wisdom: it jumps out of the way. It is almost an in-built response, so no thinking is needed. That’s what Zen people have been doing with their disciples.

One Zen Master had this habit that whenever he would talk of God, of Buddha, of the higher dimensions of life, he would raise one of his fingers towards the sky. It became so characteristic of him that one of his small sannyasins, a young boy — must have been of the age of Siddhartha — became very much interested in this one finger pointing upwards. And he was always in attendance just to do something for the Master — if he needs some tea, to run and bring the tea, or just to be by his side and to help him to get rid of the mosquitoes.

He learnt the trick, and playfully, whenever the Master was not looking at him, he would show one finger to the audience. The Master knew — people would laugh, or smile and he would know who was doing the whole trick.

One day — and this can be done only by a Zen Master — he simply caught hold of the child when he was making the gesture of one finger pointing to heaven, and cut the finger with a sharp knife. Now, just think of doing such a thing to poor Siddhartha….

The child cried, screamed, and the Master said, “Stop! And put the finger up!” And his shout was such, it was such a thunderlike shout, that the child forgot all about his finger, that it had been cut and blood was oozing, and he showed the finger which was NO more there, because the Master had ordered.

And in that moment when he was showing a finger which was no more there, he became aware of the invisible; the Master was not pointing to something visible, but something invisible. And the child started laughing, and the Master took him into his embrace and said, “You have understood.” And it is said that small child had his first satori. Later on became a famous enlightened Master.

Different approaches… but the truth is one. The truth is silence — the single note of silence. Be silent and know, and you will also know the same thing that Buddhas have always known and will always know: truth is eternal. It has nothing to do with time, it never changes.

Source – Osho Book “The Fish in the Sea is Not Thirsty”

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