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God is Your Concentrated Fear
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OSHO : Sat Chit Anand, Chapter 16

OSHO,
When I was coming for discourse, my heart was trembling with fear; I felt as if I was going to die. Death seemed to be very close.
Later in the discourse, I felt an infinite joy from some unknown source. Will you please comment?

Death is always close by. It is almost like your shadow. You may be aware, you may not be aware, but it follows you from the first moment of your life to the very last moment. Death is a process just as life is a process, and they are almost together, like two wheels of a bullock cart. Life cannot exist without death; neither can death exist without life.

Our minds have an insane desire: we want only life and not death. We don't look at the existential truth, we always cling to our own insane desire. Any desire that goes against nature is insane. And this desire is in almost every living creature, not only human beings. Even the trees are afraid of death, but trees can be forgiven. They are not conscious beings, they are only unconscious -- fast asleep.

But you are a little bit awake: you can sense the presence of death. Hence the possibility opens for a deeper understanding, that life and death are all together, two extremes of one energy. Life is the active force and death is the inactive force. Life is the positive electricity and death is the negative electricity, but they cannot be separated.

You are saying, "When I was coming for discourse, my heart was trembling with fear; I felt as if I was going to die." Those who are aware are aware that death is possible at any moment -- the very next moment and you may be gone. This awareness is going to help you to live this moment as deeply as possible, because death can cut your roots without informing you, without any previous intimation that, "I am coming." It simply comes. You know only when it has happened. But it is not the greatest misery. The greatest misery is that when there was the chance and the opportunity, you did not live -- you went on postponing.

Life is an opportunity. Death is the end of the rope.

If you understand death your life will become intense and total.

But instead of understanding death, you become overwhelmed by it. Hence the heart starts trembling with fear. And fear is not going to help at all, fear is going to cloud your mind even more. Out of fear, there has never been any understanding.

So whenever you feel fear, it is a tremendous opportunity to understand that life is momentary, it is ephemeral, it is made of the same stuff as dreams are made of. How real the dream looks when you are asleep -- in fact, more real than your experiences when you are awake. You may have never thought about it, but while you are awake you can doubt: "Perhaps what I am seeing may be just a dream." I may be a dream, you may be a dream, this whole communion may be happening just as a dream. Soon you will be awake and you will find, "My God! It was just a dream."

There is a possibility when you are awake to suspect, to doubt the reality that surrounds you. But when you are asleep, you cannot even doubt the existence of the dream. It is so real, it is more real than reality. Have you ever doubted any dream, thinking that perhaps what you are seeing is a dream? The moment you doubt, you are awake, and the dream is immediately finished. The dream can remain there only if you are totally asleep, so deep that no doubt, no suspicion, can arise in you.

But to those who have understood both life and death as nothing but two aspects of one reality, the dream and the so-called reality of your waking consciousness are not basically different. Just as in the morning you wake up and the dream life is finished, one day in death you wake up into another reality and all that was real up to then -- for seventy years -- becomes just a dream. Not even a trace of it is left anywhere in your consciousness.

Death is a constant reminder that, "I can come any moment. Be prepared." And what is the preparation? The preparation is: live life so totally, so intensely, be so aflame with it that when death comes there is no complaint, there is no grudge. You are absolutely ready because you have lived life so totally, you have known all its mysteries -- there is no point in living anymore. Death has come exactly at the right time, when you may have thought to die yourself. I call that death perfect which comes at the moment when you yourself may have thought, "It is enough."

Death comes and you understand that life has been lived totally, so now there is no point to go on breathing and go on waking and sleeping unnecessarily -- because nothing new is going to happen. Now everything is past and there is no future. In such a moment, death is a welcome guest. And unless you are ready to welcome death, know well that you have missed life. Those who feel sadness and fear about death are the people who have missed the train. But in our unconsciousness, we are all continuously missing the train. The train is moving every moment, just in front of you, but somehow you go on missing.

I have told you about those three professors, all belonging to the Department of Philosophy. And they were talking, standing on the platform. They had come to send one of them off for a long journey, to give him a send-off. But they got so involved in their talking and discussions that the train left. It was only when the last compartment was moving just in front of them that they all three became aware. They all ran. Two jumped into the compartment, one could not.
An old man, a porter on the railway station, was watching the whole scene. And this man standing there was looking so sad that the old man said, "I can understand that you missed the train, but don't be worried, because within two hours another train will be coming."
He said, "I am not worried about myself. I am worried about those two fellows who have entered the compartment. They had come to send me off...." But such was the rush -- and everything had to be done so quickly.

This is our state. It can happen to anybody, just because our actions arise out of our unconsciousness. Your heart trembling with fear is nothing but your misunderstanding. As far as death is concerned, what you experienced is true for everybody, every moment, until you die. It is not true only for those who are already dead. In one thing they are better off than you: they cannot die anymore -- no fear, no trembling of the heart. They just lie down and rest in their graves. Nothing is going to happen to them anymore.

But as long as you are alive, the possibility of death is absolutely certain. Only the timing is not certain. But the happening is absolutely certain. What does it matter whether you die after seven days or seven years or seventy years? One thing is certain: that you are going to die. Life is not something that you can go on missing. Otherwise at the moment of death you will feel the greatest misery and pain, the deepest agony, from missing the whole opportunity that was given to you.

And existence gives so abundantly, it is not miserly.

You are just not alert enough to use the opportunity to transform yourself into something immortal, eternal, into some experience which will make you beyond the reach of death. Just fearing death is not of any help. If you see that death is following you, it is time to start searching deeper into yourself for that point which is beyond death. We have been calling that point sachchidanand: the truth of your being, the ultimate consciousness of your life, and the tremendous blessing of your coming to flower.

You are also saying that as you sat in the discourse you felt "an infinite joy from some unknown source." There is nothing mysterious about it. You came to the discourse trembling, overwhelmed by the fear of death, and here you saw laughter and music and you became one with the commune. You forgot your tiny ego and its fear of dying. You fell into deep harmony with all who are present here.

This harmony is the source of your joy, not any unknown source. This harmony is the source of your infinite joy, and this harmony is also the source of your deep feeling of love for me.

It is not something unknown, it is something very clear, you just have to be a little more conscious. Then this clarity will give you all the clues to things that go on happening in your being, but you don't know from where they come, where they are going. Everything seems to be a misunderstanding. But out of harmony, out of love, out of joy, arises understanding.

One day a psychiatrist was invited by the local women's club to give a talk about sex. He accepts the invitation, but because his wife is a bit of a prude, he tells her he is going to talk about fishing. The next day the psychiatrist's wife happens to meet the sponsor of the talk in the local supermarket.
"Your husband," gushes the woman, "gave a splendid speech last night."
"I am surprised to hear that," replies the wife. "After all, he has no experience in that area."
"Come on, now," says the other woman blushing, "he seemed to know a great deal about the subject."
"Maybe," replies the wife, "but he only tried it twice. The first time he threw up after eating what he caught and the second time he lost his rod!"

But that kind of misunderstanding goes on. You have to be a little more clear.

OSHO,
Again I feel this fear inside me: the fear of connecting with you really deeply; the fear of falling apart, and then not being able to function anymore in this world; the fear of being helpless and absolutely vulnerable.
What to do? My mind is already set that enlightenment is not going to happen to me before the death of my body. Is this okay?


Fear arises in many situations. Deep down it is always there, but not active. It is inactive, so that you don't become aware of it. But fear is the very foundation of unconscious life. All your actions arise out of it. You want money, you want power, you want prestige. What are all your ambitions, except to cover up your deep hidden fear? Perhaps money may be a security, perhaps power may make you more protected, secure, safe. Your respectability, in society, your religion, God...all these are by-products of fear.

Why do you believe in God?

You have not seen him, you don't have any evidence that any such thing exists anywhere. But you know that without God you will not be able to repress your fear. Your fear needs God. It is a fear-oriented hypothesis.

Your fear needs a father figure to protect you in dangerous situations, to help you when you need the help, to become a light in your darkness, to support you when you feel you are falling into an abysmal abyss. God is your concentrated fear.

And there are lesser gods. Money is a lesser god -- more visible, hence more people cling to money. But they don't want to take any chances, so they also go on donating to the church, just to keep a bank balance in God's bank. And here they go on clinging to the money, because in life it seems money gives a certain security. At least tomorrow is certain. You will have food, you will have the house, you will have your wife, you will have your husband, you will have your children.

Our whole life seems to be circling around the center of fear.

It is present twenty-four hours, but we become aware of it only in certain situations: either you start feeling the presence of death, perhaps you have seen somebody dying, perhaps you have seen somebody very old on the road and it has reminded you about the next step.... That fellow is going to step in a grave soon, but how far are you? You are also in the same queue. Maybe a little longer distance, but sooner or later -- and the queue is becoming shorter every moment. You are coming to the window.

Anything may trigger the idea of death in you -- just a dry leaf falling from the tree is enough to remind you of death. Just a few days before it was so green and so young, so beautiful. It used to dance in the morning sun. What has happened?

A dying leaf falling from the tree was the cause of Lao Tzu's enlightenment. Because seeing the dry leaf falling, he accepted his death so totally that there was no question of any fear. If this is how life functions, then there is no question of fear.

Have you ever thought about it -- that death is the only certainty in life?

Everything else may fail. Love may fail, money -- you know what is happening in America. Nothing is certain. Just a few days ago the dollar was on top, the biggest and the strongest currency in the world. It will never be again. It has gone down the drain. There is no possibility for it to rise again. It will have to go even lower. And how proud the dollar was! And now its place has been taken by the German mark or by the Japanese yen. The Japanese yen is now the topmost, but it cannot remain at the top.

Nobody can remain at the top forever. Once you have reached the top, the next thing is to fall. How long can you balance? It is almost like in a circus, when somebody is balancing on the rope. How long? Just for a few seconds it is possible to manage it, and that too needs tremendous exercise and rehearsals. And still, the fear is there. Underneath there is the net, because even after so many rehearsals, so much practice, nobody knows -- anything is possible. The rope may break, because the rope has not been trained not to break.... Just any small thing: the woman who is walking may have a sneeze just in the middle of the rope. You cannot say -- anything is possible. And you cannot prevent a sneeze.

Money is more visible. People believe in money more than in God. They may pretend that they believe in God more, but their actual life shows something else. But the reason is the same. Whether it is money or power or prestige or God or religion, the reason is the same. You are living in fear and you are trying to protect yourself somehow. And death is only one of the reasons that makes you aware of fear.

Love can also make you aware of fear, because love is also a kind of death. Your ego has to die, only then is love possible. It is a very partial death, but still something close to death. Hence people talk about love, but are very afraid of love. They talk about love because they feel very lonely. That loneliness creates fear.

Man is really in great trouble. The old proverb is right which says, "Life is not just a bed of roses." It is not. Such great dilemmas! Loneliness creates fear. Out of that fear you want to be in love, to be intimate with someone so that your loneliness disappears. But as you come closer to somebody.... Again, another fear -- that you may be lost.

You have to be humble enough to reach to somebody's heart, otherwise there is no way. The ego will be a barrier, it will keep a distance. And love is possible only when there is no distance at all -- the ego has to give way. And that ego giving way appears to be almost a death, because you have been so much identified with the ego.

So man is split. Half of him wants to love, half of him pulls back -- don't go any further, you are too close, there is danger. Your fear is that if you come in deeper communion with me, you will fall apart.

Naturally, nobody wants to fall apart. And a great fear arises.

But there is a strong magnetic pull also, because deep down you know that whatever can fall apart is not you. And whatever can fall apart is going to fall apart sooner or later. How long can you hold it? It is not your authentic reality. It is just all false personality, which needs continuous holding. Not even for a moment can you leave it alone, otherwise it will fall apart.

I know a few people who are afraid even to sleep. When I came to know the first person who was afraid to sleep, I could not think what must be the problem. I went because his son had come to me -- he was my student. And he said, "My father is in tremendous misery. Apart from that, he is a successful man. He is rich enough, there is no need to worry."
Then I asked, "What is the problem?"

He said, "The problem is, he is afraid of sleep. He says 'What is the guarantee that I will wake up?'"

Now, how to give this man a guarantee? And naturally the fear seems to be logical. There is no guarantee. You may not wake up. Many people have not woken up. Once they have gone to sleep, they have gone. But if you become afraid of such things, life becomes absolutely impossible. So he keeps himself awake and he keeps his whole family awake. He is driving everybody mad.

His son said to me, "Do something, because to keep himself awake, everybody else has to be awake. He will not let anybody sleep. He knocks on everybody's doors saying, 'Are you awake?' Just a few minutes of sleep and his knock comes. Because if everybody sleeps in the house it will be very difficult for him to remain awake. All the lights have to be on. And he goes on making everybody stay awake because there is a danger."

Now this man looks insane, but if you try to understand, you will see that this is your fear also. You are saying, you are afraid that you will fall apart. And I guarantee: you will fall apart! So what is the fear? Do it once -- once and for all! Then there will be no fear. Fall apart and let us see what falls apart. Not your legs, not your hands, nor your eyes.... Nothing that is really yours is going to fall apart, only your false notions about you. Your personality, your ego, your knowledgeability, these are the things which are going to fall apart. But they are not worth holding.

Once they are gone you will have a far more beautiful space available to you. Don't cling to things which don't have any authentic reality. And the authentic reality need not be supported by you. It is there, it is not going to fall apart.

Only the false can disappear, only your shadow -- not you.

But why should you be afraid if your shadow disappears? Your shadow is not you. Your shadow has nothing to do with you. It has no reality, it has no existence, it has no meaning in your life. But you have become identified too much with your shadows. I have read Aesop's Fables more deeply than the greatest holy scriptures of the world, because Aesop's Fables have more significance and more meaning and tremendous psychological truths, which your holy scriptures are completely missing.

One of the parables in Aesop is: a fox gets up early in the morning as the sun is rising. She comes out of the cave looking for some breakfast. But then, just as she comes out, she looks at her shadow. In the early morning sun the shadow is very long. She says, "My God! I am this big! Even a camel will not be enough for breakfast." She starts searching for a camel -- it will be even better if she can get an elephant.
But time passes and she does not come across any elephant, any camel, and it is getting hot, and in fact the time for breakfast has passed. It is time for lunch and she is feeling really hungry. The sun has come just above her head. She looks another time at her shadow. It has shrunken completely, it is just under her. She says, "My God, I never thought that hunger can do that much. I have shrunken. I used to be so long -- just in the morning -- so huge and just missing one breakfast.... Now even if I can get a rat, that will do -- even for lunch."

Just a small parable written for children, but if even an old man can understand it.... It has a tremendous psychological truth. We are all living identified with our shadows and the fear that the shadow may disappear. It is better not to come too close to someone who can make your shadow disappear, who can make you aware of what is false in you and what is not false; because the moment you become aware about the false, it falls apart.

But my suggestion to you is: rather than trembling your whole life about the false, being afraid about its death, it is better once and for all to get it finished.

And you are saying, "And then not being able to function any more in this world." Strange fears! I have been functioning perfectly well in this world. My family was also worried, my neighbors were also worried, my friends were worried, my professors, my teachers. Everybody was worried except me, saying, "How are you going to manage?"

And I used to tell them that, "Trees can manage, animals can manage. I don't think there is much of a problem. The whole existence is managing. I will also find some way."

But my father was very much concerned. Almost in tears he would say to me, "I am worried. I have loved you so much, although you have given me more trouble than any of my children. But perhaps because of that, I have loved you more than any of my children." And he had enough children -- eleven children. Whenever he would find me alone he would say, "I continuously think of your future, because you are going to be good for nothing."

I said, "You are right. I am going to be good for nothing. But you need not be worried, because I don't see any problem in being good for nothing. Existence will take care."

And he proved right. I turned out to be good for nothing. I have never done anything -- neither good nor bad -- but I have lived perfectly, totally, intensely. The way I wanted to live, I have lived that way, without caring even if the whole world was against me. I have not cared. I have lived my own way, my style, because I don't think that I have to listen to anyone.

I have my life and I am responsible only to myself, to nobody else.

Why are you so afraid that you cannot function anymore in the world if you come closer to me? All these people are closer to me and they are all functioning perfectly well, better than anybody else. And then you ask me, "What to do?" First thing, just fall apart. Come closer, become good for nothing, and just see how existence takes care of you. A little trust.

And then, fear upon fear: "My mind is already set that enlightenment is not going to happen to me before the death of my body." Here there are so many enlightened people. They don't tell it, because if they tell it people laugh about it. So they keep it secret, but they know perfectly well that they are enlightened. And they are all alive, more alive than you will find people anywhere else. And their enlightenment has not disturbed anything.

My enlightenment is not a small thing that can be disturbed because you smoke cigarettes. You can smoke, just smoke in an enlightened way! My enlightenment does not prevent you from anything -- just change the quality. It does not teach you to escape from the world.

I am absolutely in favor of the world.

I call those people cowards whom you have worshipped as saints. I call them people who have betrayed the beautiful earth. And I want my people not to betray the earth. You can reduce my whole vision of life to a single sentence: not to betray the earth. Trust it, it is your mother, it is your very source of life.

And why should you be so certain that you will not become enlightened before the death of your body? If so many people can become enlightened.... Just remember one thing: become enlightened and don't say it to anybody. Saying creates trouble. Then people start asking questions: "You are enlightened, so why are you doing this? And why are you doing that? And why are you going to the Blue Diamond?" Once you say you are enlightened, you are in trouble.

Once it happened.... I was going from one meeting to another meeting in Bombay, and one of my very close friends was driving me. And we came to a bistro, a beautiful place. He just jokingly asked me, "Should we go in?"
I said, "That's a great idea."
He still thought that I was not going to go in, but he wanted to see how far the thing would go. So he stopped his car. I got out of the car. He started feeling a little nervous.
I said, "Come on!"
He said, "But if somebody knows you and knows me there will be trouble."
I said, "Don't be worried. You just come behind me."
He had to come because I entered and there was a striptease going on. A woman was dancing nude and I pulled up a chair, just in the front. The manager had heard me speak somewhere. He came running to touch my feet and my friend was perspiring.... It was air-conditioned.
I said, "You are not enlightened. I am enlightened. Why are you perspiring? And he is touching my feet, not yours." Even the naked woman came to touch my feet. When the manager came, naturally.... And my friend was almost having a nervous breakdown. You will not believe it -- I had to drive because he was not in a position to drive. He was lying back, just resting, getting better before we reached the next place.
And he said, "This is the last time. I will never drive you anywhere. You have almost killed me!" Because not only the manager came, the woman came and all the customers, and there were nearabout three hundred people in the bistro. "And there were many who recognized you, who recognized me." And there was great silence, all the music stopped, everything went topsy-turvy.
And the manager asked me, "What can I do?"
I said, "You just bring good ice cream."
So I ate the ice cream. He had not even the courage to ask for payment and we went out. You don't ask payment from an enlightened man.
But since that time my friend stopped driving me. Before that he used to drive me in Bombay from one place to another place. Since that day he lost his nerve.

What is the problem? Just become enlightened. Don't tell anybody! And then you are free to do anything you want. Inside you are enlightened. Outside you are free to act. I am not taking you away from the world.

I am teaching you the art of how to be in the world and yet not be part of it.

You are hoping to get enlightened when your body dies so that you don't commit any mistake. But if you are committing so many mistakes, you can commit them even when you are dead. Committing mistakes is something which becomes habitual. If you have been committing mistakes all your life, do you think just by death you will stop committing mistakes? You will commit them somewhere else, but you will continue. Don't wait -- death will come. But you don't have to postpone enlightenment until after death.

The reason is clear: you are worried that enlightenment means you will have to remain just like me in my room. This is my way. It is not necessary for you to be in your room. You can be in anybody's room. Here it is happening every day. People see somebody suddenly coming out from somebody else's room. They cannot believe what is happening. In fact, it seems no room belongs to anybody. People are simply changing every night. And all are enlightened people.

I don't take enlightenment seriously. It is the most hilarious thing in the world.

Paddy decides to go rabbit shooting, but when he gets to his favorite field he sees the village priest is already there. Paddy watches with fascination as the priest holds his finger over a rabbit hole and immediately a rabbit pops out. The priest grabs it and puts it into a sack. He repeats this unusual but very successful technique until his sack is full of rabbits. Paddy stops the priest and asks him how he does it.
"Easy," says the priest. "Put your finger on your wife's pussy and then hold it over a rabbit hole. They can't resist the smell, so when they come out, grab them!"
As this sounds much easier than shooting, Paddy rushes home to find Maureen bent over scrubbing the floor. He lifts up her skirt and applies his finger as instructed.
Without looking up, Maureen giggles, "Holy Moses, Father! Rabbit hunting again?"

Okay, Maneesha?

Yes, Osho.

OSHO : Sat Chit Anand, Chapter 16
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