Oshodham & Osho World Galleria : Online Magazine - Feb 15 - March 15, 2013


It was a dark moonless night; the clouds were heavy with rain because it was the monsoon season. Suddenly thunder sounded and lightning flashed as a few rain drops started to fall. The village was asleep. Only Nanak was awake and the echo of his song filled the air.

Nanak's mother was worried because the night was more than half over and the lamp in his room was still burning. She could hear his voice as he sang. She could restrain herself no longer and knocked at his door, "Go to sleep now, my son. Soon it will be dawn." Nanak became silent. From the darkness sounded the call of the sparrowhawk. "Piyu, piyu, piyu!" it called.

"Listen, mother!" Nanak called out. "The sparrowhawk is calling to his beloved; how can I be silent, because I am competing with him? I will call my beloved as long as he calls his -- even longer, because his beloved is nearby, perhaps in the next tree! My beloved is so far away. I will have to sing for lives upon lives before my voice reaches him." Nanak resumed his song.

Nanak attained God by singing to him; Nanak's quest is very unusual -- his path was decorated with songs. The first thing to be realized is that Nanak practiced no austerities or meditation or yoga; he only sang, and singing, he arrived. He sang with all his heart and soul, so much so that his singing became meditation; his singing became his purification and his yoga.

Whenever a person performs any act with all his heart and soul, that act becomes the path. Endless meditation, if halfhearted, will take you nowhere; whereas just singing a simple song with all your being merged in it, or dance a dance with the same total absorption and you will reach God. The question is not what you do, but how much of yourself you involved in the act.

Nanak's path to supreme realization, to godliness is scattered with song and flowers. Whatever he has said was said in verse. His path was full of melody and soft, filled with the flavor of ambrosia.

Kabir says: "My enchanted mind was so intoxicated that it drained the filled cup without caring to measure the quantity." So it was with Nanak: he drank without caring how much he drank; then he sang, and sang, and sang. And his songs are not those of an ordinary singer. They have sprung from within one who had known. There is the ring of truth, the reflection of God within them.

Now another thing about the japuji. The moonless night described at the beginning was an incident from Nanak's life when he was about sixteen or seventeen years of age. When the Japuji was conceived, Nanak was thirty years, six months and fifteen days old. The first incident refers to the days when he was still a seeker in quest of the beloved. The call to the beloved, the refrain, "Piyu, Piyu, Piyu ..." was still the sparrowhawk calling; he had not yet met the beloved.
The Japuji was his first proclamation after the union with the beloved. The sparrowhawk had found his beloved; the call of "Piyu, Piyu," was now over. The Japuji are the very first words uttered by Nanak after self-realization; therefore they hold a very special place in the sayings of Nanak. They are the latest news brought back from the kingdom of heaven.
The incident preceding the birth of the Japuji needs to be understood also. Nanak sat on the bank of the river in total darkness with his friend and follower, Mardana. Suddenly, without saying a word, he removed his clothes and walked into the river. Mardana called after him, "Where are you going? The night is so dark and cold!" Nanak went further and further; he plunged into the depths of the river. Mardana waited, thinking he would be out soon, but Nanak did not return.

Mardana waited for five minutes; when ten minutes had passed he became anxious. Where could he be? There was no sign of him. Mardana began to run along the shore calling to him, "Where are you? Answer me! Where are you?" He felt he heard a voice saying, "Be patient, be patient!" but there was no sign of Nanak.

Mardana ran back to the village and woke up everyone. It was the middle of the night, but a crowd collected at the riverside because everyone in the village loved Nanak. They all had some sense, a glimpse, of what Nanak was going to be. They had felt the fragrance of his presence, just as the bud gives off its fragrance before the flower has opened. All the village wept. They ran back and forth the whole length of the river bank but to no avail.

Three days passed. By now it was certain that Nanak had drowned. The people imagined that his body must have been carried away by the swift current and perhaps eaten by wild animals. The village was drowned in sorrow. Though everyone thought him dead, on the third night Nanak appeared from the river. The first words he spoke became the Japuji.

So goes the story -- and a story means that which is true and yet not true. It is true because it gives the essential truth; it is false in the sense that it is only symbolic. And it is evident that the more profound the subject matter, the greater the need for symbols.

When Nanak disappeared in the river, the story goes that he stood before the gate of God. He experienced God. There before his eyes stood the beloved he pined for, for whom he sang night and day. He who had become the thirst of his every heartbeat stood revealed before Nanak! All his desires were fulfilled. Then God spoke to him, "Now go back and give unto others what I have given unto you." The Japuji is Nanak's first offering after he returned from God.

Now, this is a story; what it symbolizes must be understood. First, unless you lose yourself completely, until you die, you cannot hope to meet God. Whether you lose yourself in a river or on a mountaintop is of little consequence; but you must die. Your annihilation becomes his being. As long as you are, he cannot be. You are the obstacle, the wall that separates you. This is the symbolic meaning of drowning in the river.

You too will have to lose yourself; you too will have to drown. Death is only completed after three days, because the ego does not give up easily. The three days in Nanak's story represent the time required for his ego to dissolve completely. Since the people could only see the ego and not the soul, they thought Nanak was dead.

Whenever a person becomes a sannyasin and sets out on the quest for God, the family members understand and give him up for dead. Now he is no longer the same person; the old links are broken, the past is no more, and the new has dawned. Between the old and the new is a vast gap; hence this symbol of three days before Nanak's reappearance.

The one who is lost invariably returns, but he returns as new. He who treads the path most certainly returns. While he was on the path he was thirsty, but when he returns he is a benefactor; he has left a beggar, he returns a king. Whoever follows the path carries his begging bowl; when he comes back he possesses infinite treasures.

The Japuji is the first gift from Nanak to the world.

To appear before God, to attain the beloved, are purely symbolic terms and not to be taken literally. There is no God sitting somewhere on high before whom you appear. But to speak of it, how else can it be expressed? When the ego is eradicated, when you disappear, whatever is before your eyes, is God himself. God is not a person -- God is an energy beyond form.

To stand before this formless energy means to see Him wherever you look, whatever you see. When the eyes open, everything is He. It only requires that you should cease to be and that your eyes be opened. Ego is like the mote in your eye; the minute it is removed, God stands revealed before you. And no sooner does God manifest, than you also become God, because there is nothing besides Him.

Nanak returned, but the Nanak who returned was also God Himself. Then each word uttered became so invaluable as to be beyond price, each word equal to the words of the Vedas.

Now let us try to understand the Japuji:


He is one: Ek Omkar Satnam.
The True Name, Vol.1, Ch.1


Meera became enlightened, and danced and danced. Her whole life she danced from one village to another, singing songs of God, of love. And Buddha became enlightened and became utterly silent, quiet, still. It is not an accident that the first marble statues made were of Buddha -- he looked like a marble statue, he sat like a marble statue. Now, you cannot make a marble statue of Meera; it is impossible. She is so volatile. She is more like a river than like a marble rock. You cannot make a statue of Meera -- it will be a falsification because the statue will not be able to dance. And without dance, there is no Meera. Meera's statues can only be made by fountains, not by marble rocks. Yes, in a fountain it is possible to make a statue of Meera, but it has to be dynamic, it has to be a dance.

Meera is crazy in her own way. And these people are never repeated. Alt enlightened people are simply unique. Just the other day I was telling you about the laughing Buddha of Japan -- he laughed his whole life. Laughter became his message.

Govind, God never repeats. He always comes in new forms, new expressions, new revelations. And never use the word 'if' -- you ARE going to become enlightened! Don't be so afraid. Why 'if'? This is not a question of ifs and buts: you are going to become enlightened -- because enlightenment is not something like an achievement, it is your very nature. Any day, turn in, and you are enlightened -- any day. Monday will do, Tuesday will do, any day! And there are only seven days....

Any moment you turn in!

Enlightenment is not something like a faraway goal; it is very close by, the closest. Even to say that it is close is not right -- it is YOU! There is no distinction, no distance between you and enlightenment. Know yourself and you are enlightened -- and you are already there! Nothing has to be added to your being. All that is needed is a one-hundred-and-eighty-degree turn... and you will be crazy.

Yes, it is better to call enlightened people crazy, because the so-called sane in the world are really insane. If the so-called sane are sane, then Buddha is crazy, Christ is crazy, I am crazy, and sooner or later, Govind, you are going to be crazy! And I hope it will be sooner.

But one thing is certain: you will not be like me -- and you need not be. And it is good that you cannot be like me, otherwise there will be imitations, otherwise there will be actors, otherwise there will be pseudo people. And many have tried; that's how religions are born. Millions have tried to be like Christ; not a single one has become a Christ. Millions have tried and instead of becoming Christs they have become Christians -- and to be a Christian is ugly, is stupid, unintelligent.

To be a Christ is really something, but when you want to be a Christ you cannot imitate Christ. Learn from him, imbibe his being, but remember: God will manifest in you in a totally different way. And it is unpredictable; no prophecy can be made. I cannot say how he will manifest in you, because God is the craziest person in the world -- unpredictable, absolutely unpredictable. He will find a way, he will find something new. And it is good that he always finds something new, because through that new the world becomes more and more enriched. Just think: Buddha is like Christ, Krishna is also like Christ; Mahavira, Zarathustra, Lao Tzu, Chuang Tzu, all are like Christ... the world would look very sad, boring. Wherever you go, you meet Christ. You will get tired. It is good that once in a while the cross disappears and the flute appears, and it is good that once in a while God comes dancing, and it is good that once in a while he is silent, AND it is also good that once in a while he comes with a cross. All shades, all nuances, all dimensions....

And, Govind, you are a unique person, as everybody else is. No two persons are alike. How can two Buddhas be alike? Not even two persons are alike, not even two pebbles on the seashore are alike. Your fingerprints are your fingerprints -- what to say about the prints of your inner being? They are going to be separate, unique, incomparable.
The Fish in the Sea is not Thirsty, Ch. 2, Q. 5


Buddha lived for forty years after he became enlightened. After his business was finished he lived for forty years more. Many times it was asked, "Why are you?" When the business is finished you should disappear. It looks illogical: why should Buddha exist within the body even for a moment? When there is no desire, how can the body continue?

There is something very deep to be understood. When desire disappears the energy that was moving in desire remains; it cannot disappear. Desire is just a form of energy. That's why you can turn one desire into another. The anger can become sex, the sex can become anger. Sex can become greed, so whenever you find a very greedy person he will be less sexual. If he is really perfectly greedy he will not be sexual at all. He will be a brahmachari, a celibate, because the whole energy is moving into greed. And if you find a very sexual person you will always find he is not greedy, because nothing is left. If you see a person who has suppressed his sex he will be angry; anger will be always ready. You can see in his eyes, in his face, that he is just angry; the whole sex energy has become anger. That's why your so-called monks and sadhus are always angry. The way they walk they show their anger; they way they look at you they show their anger. Their silence is just skindeep --  touch them and they will become angry. Sex becomes anger. These are forms; life is the energy. What happens when all desires disappear? Energy cannot disappear, energy is indestructible. Ask the physicists; even they say that energy cannot be destroyed.

A certain energy was existing in Gautam Buddha when he became enlightened. That certain energy was moving in sex, anger, greed in millions of ways. All forms disappeared, so what became of that energy? Energy cannot go out of existence, and when desires are not there it becomes formless, but it exists. Now, what is the function of it? That energy becomes compassion.

You cannot be in compassion because you have no energy. All your energy is divided, sometimes in sex, sometimes in anger, sometimes in greed. Compassion is not a form. Only when all your desires disappear does that energy become compassion, KARUNA. You cannot cultivate compassion. When you are desireless, compassion happens; your whole energy moves into compassion. And this movement is very different. Desire has a motivation in it, a goal; compassion is nonmotivated, there is no goal to it, it is simply overflowing energy.

So when I say I exist for you I don't mean that I am doing something to exist for you. Now I am not doing anything; forms of desire have disappeared. Now the energy is there, without me. The energy is moving and overflowing, and you can partake, you can feed on it. That is what Jesus meant when he said, "Eat me. Let me become your blood, let me become your food." This overflowing energy can become food to you, food of the eternal. I am not doing anything. When I say I exist for you it is only language, for there is no other language. I am not doing anything, this is how it is happening. My forms have disappeared; now a formless energy has remained, and it will go on overflowing. Those who are wise can partake, because soon it will become bodiless also. First energy becomes formless, desireless, and then it becomes bodiless.

The body has its own momentum. When one is born, when a buddha is born, he is born out of a communion of two bodies, the father and the mother; then particular chromosomes, particular cells, create his body. Those cells have a built-in momentum. That built-in momentum means that this body will exist for seventy or eighty years; this is a body blueprint. For eighty years this body can exist. The body doesn't know, cannot know, that the soul that has entered is going to become enlightened. This house cannot know that the person who has entered this house to live will become enlightened. And when this man becomes enlightened, even then this house will not know. The house will continue; it has its own life. The body has its own life, and the body is completely unaware that a person has become enlightened. It continues, it has its own momentum, its own fuel.

At the age of forty Buddha became enlightened. The body became irrelevant but it continued. It continued, it completed its circle; it was there for eighty years. It is good, for these forty years were the overflowing years, and we were able to know what enlightenment is. If Buddha had disappeared that very moment there would have been no religion. If the body had dropped, if Buddha had become enlightened and the body had dropped, he would not have been --  even to tell what had happened. This was good; existence was very compassionate. Buddha lived for forty years more, not with any motivation, but with the momentum of the body he just went on overflowing. This body will also disappear; the momentum has to be completed.

I am not doing anything for you; for that too is sort of egoistic, anybody thinking he is doing something for you. It is happening. The form of desires disappears and energy becomes compassion. The body has to complete its momentum; it has to complete its momentum, it has to complete its blueprint. This gap will be an overflowing. It is a feast, not given by me to you, it is a feast given by the whole.
A Birds On A Wing,Ch. 2, Q. 1