Oshos discourse series:
Yoga: The Alpha and the Omega
In December 1973 Osho begins the 10-part series in English on Patanjali's Yoga Sutras, about the science of meditation.
Before we talk about the first sutra of Patanjali, a few other things have to be understood. First, yoga is not a religionremember that. Yoga is not Hindu, it is not Mohammedan. Yoga is a pure science just like mathematics, physics or chemistry. Physics is not Christian, physics is not Buddhist. If Christians have discovered the laws of physics, then too physics is not Christian. It is just accidental that Christians have come to discover the laws of physics. But physics remains just a science. Yoga is a scienceit is just an accident that Hindus discovered it. It is not Hindu. It is a pure mathematics of the inner being. So a Mohammedan can be a yogi, a Christian can be a yogi, a Jaina, a Buddhist can be a yogi.
Yoga is pure science, and Patanjali is the greatest name as far as the world of yoga is concerned. This man is rare. There is no other name comparable to Patanjali. For the first time in the history of humanity, this man brought religion to the state of a science: he made religion a science, bare laws; no belief is needed
Yoga is concerned with your total being, with your roots. It is not philosophical. So with Patanjali we will not be thinking, speculating. With Patanjali we will be trying to know the ultimate laws of being: the laws of its transformation, the laws of how to die and how to be reborn again, the laws of a new order of being. That is why I call it a science.
Patanjali is rare. He is an enlightened person like Buddha, like Krishna, like Christ, like Mahavira, Mohammed, Zarathustra, but he is different in one way. Buddha, Krishna, Mahavira, Zarathustra, Mohammed, no one has a scientific attitude. They are great founders of religions. They have changed the whole pattern of human mind and its structure, but their approach is not scientific.
Patanjali is like an Einstein in the world of Buddhas. He is a phenomenon. He could have easily been a Nobel Prize winner like an Einstein or Bohr or Max Planck, Heisenberg. He has the same attitude, the same approach of a rigorous scientific mind. He is not a poet; Krishna is a poet. He is not a moralist; Mahavira is a moralist. He is basically a scientist, thinking in terms of laws. And he has come to deduce absolute laws of human being, the ultimate working structure of human mind and reality.
And if you follow Patanjali, you will come to know that he is as exact as any mathematical formula. Simply do what he says and the result will happen. The result is bound to happen; it is just like two plus two, they become four. It is just like you heat water up to one hundred degrees and it evaporates. No belief is needed: you simply do it and know. It is something to be done and known. That's why I say there is no comparison. On this earth, never a man has existed like Patanjali.
You can find in Buddha's utterances, poetrybound to be there. Many times while Buddha is expressing himself, he becomes poetic. The realm of ecstasy, the realm of ultimate knowing, is so beautiful, the temptation is so much to become poetic, the beauty is such, the benediction is such, the bliss is such, one starts talking in poetic language.
But Patanjali resists that. It is very difficult. No one has been able to resist. Jesus, Krishna, Buddha they all become poetic. The splendor, the beauty, when it explodes within you, you will start dancing, you will start singing. In that state you are just like a lover who has fallen in love with the whole universe.
Patanjali resists that. He will not use poetry; he will not use a single poetic symbol even. He will not do anything with poetry; he will not talk in terms of beauty. He will talk in terms of mathematics. He will be exact, and he will give you maxims. Those maxims are just indications what is to be done. He will not explode into ecstasy; he will not say things that cannot be said; he will not try the impossible. He will just put down the foundation, and if you follow the foundation you will reach the peak which is beyond. He is a rigorous mathematicianremember this. yoga101