Just Like That - TALKS ON SUFISM
An authority on Eastern mysticism and the author of translated versions from Jelaluddin Rumi's Methnawi: Open Secret, We Are Three, Delicious Laughter, Feeling the Shoulder of the Lion, and others, Coleman Barks, writes an introduction to this book of discourses on Sufism by Osho.
It seems important to me that Osho be known to an audience wider than His beautiful community, and that this book in particular find new readers. I am very grateful for His amazing talking. His daring experiments with community and transformation, His enlightenment, and His jokes! (Did you get the satire of American consumerism with the ninety-seven Rolls Royces? Some people missed that.)
The humour always bubbles close, no matter what's being discussed: The lack of a 13th floor in American hotels, the responsibilities of being awake, a dog jumping in a river, Gurdjieff's nonidentification, the prodigal son, meditation, the aggression of science, Shibli and his three teachers - there's great generosity of detail here, and his joy is primary. It's all one thing, really these morning talks. Reading them, you'll taste a fresh springwater from those days. The catalyst for each is part of a Sufi story, brilliantly interpreted. But don't come with your intellectual acumen drawn. Os do - He will meet you however you approach. This is a profound form of play. Osho improvises the jazz discourses of the century. Better than Gurdjieff!
What am I doing in front of this book? I got asked because of my work on Rumi, and also perhaps because I visited the commune in Poona in October 1988 and felt very at home there. Maybe I'm what He called in the early 80's a "shravakar". Here's a Sufi story that He doesn't discuss in this book:
Ibn Khafif Shirazi once said, "I heard that there were two great Masters in Egypt, so I hurried to reach their presence. When I arrived I saw two magnificent teachers meditating. I greeted them three times, but they did not answer. I meditated with them for four days. Each day I would beg them to talk with me, since I had come such a long way. Finally the younger one opened his eyes. 'Ibn Khafif, life is short. Use the portion that's left to deepen yourself. Don't waste time greeting people!' I asked him to give me some advice. 'Stay in the presence those who remind you of your lord, who not only speak wisdom, but are that.' Then he went back into meditation."
I feel like that man, Ibn Khafif. At Osho's level of being, introductions are unnecessary and serve mostly as puffery for the introducer.
Let the music begin.
Author of translated versions from Jelaluddin Rumi's Methnawi: Open Secret, We Are Three, Delicious Laughter, Feeling the Shoulder of the Lion, and others.