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Chapter 3

Sitnalta and the Seventeen Chakras
(The New Editon does not have this chapter and carries the questions in the end of the 1st Chapter under the title "RESPONSES TO QUESTIONS")

The first question:

Question 1

Beloved Osho, Why don’t I trust you?

Why is it so hard to trust you?

Prem Prageeta, trust is possible only if first you trust in yourself. The most fundamental thing has to happen within you first. If you trust in yourself you can trust in me, you can trust in people, you can trust in existence. But if you don't trust in yourself then no other trust is ever possible.

And the society destroys trust at the very roots. It does not allow you to trust yourself. It teaches all other kinds of trust -- trust in the parents, trust in the church, trust in the state, trust in God, ad infinitum. But the basic trust is completely destroyed. And then all other trusts are phony, are bound to be phony. Then all other trusts are just plastic flowers. You don't have real roots for real flowers to grow.

The society does it deliberately, on purpose, because a man who trusts in himself is dangerous for the society -- a society that depends on slavery, a society that has invested too much in slavery.

A man trusting himself is an independent man. You cannot make predictions about him, he will move in his own way. Freedom will be his life. He will trust when he feels, when he loves, and then his trust will have a tremendous intensity and truth in it. Then his trust will be alive and authentic. And he will be ready to risk all for his trust, but only when he feels it, only when it is true, only when it stirs his heart, only when it stirs his intelligence and his love, otherwise not. You cannot force him into any kind of believing.

And this society depends on belief. Its whole structure is that of autohypnosis. Its whole structure is based in creating robots and machines, not men. It needs dependent people -- so much so that they are constantly in need of being tyrannized, so much so that they are searching and seeking their own tyrants, their own Adolf Hitlers, their own Mussolinis, their own Josef Stalins and Mao Zedongs.

This earth, this beautiful earth, we have turned into a great prison. A few power-lusty people have reduced the whole of humanity into a mob. Man is allowed to exist only if he compromises with all kinds of nonsense.

Now, to tell a child to believe in God is nonsense, utter nonsense -- not that God does not exist, but because the child has not yet felt the thirst, the desire, the longing. He is not yet ready to go in search of the truth, the ultimate truth of life. He is not yet mature enough to inquire into the reality of God. That love affair has to happen some day, but it can happen only if no belief is imposed upon him. If he is converted before the thirst has arisen to explore and to know, then his whole life he will live in a phony way, he will live in a pseudo way.

Yes, he will talk about God, because he has been told that God is. And he has been told authoritatively, and he has been told by people who were very powerful in his childhood -- his parents, the priests, the teachers. He has been told by people and he had to accept it; it was a question of his survival. He could not say no to his parents, because without them he would not be able to live at all. It was too risky to say no, he had to say yes. But his yes can't be true.

How can it be true? He is saying yes only as a political device, to survive. You have not turned him into a religious person, you have made him a diplomat, you have created a politician. You have sabotaged his potential to grow into an authentic being. You have poisoned him. You have destroyed the very possibility of his intelligence, because intelligence arises only when the longing arises to know.

Now the longing will never arise, because before the question has taken possession of his soul, the answer has already been supplied. Before he was hungry, the food has been forced into his being. Now, without hunger, this forced food cannot be digested; there is no hunger to digest it. That's why people live like pipes through which life passes like undigested food.
One has to be very patient with children, very alert, very conscious not to say anything that may hinder their own intelligence from arriving, not to convert them into Christians, Hindus and Mohammedans. One needs infinite patience.

One day that miracle happens when the child himself starts inquiring. Then too, don't supply him with readymade answers. Readymade answers help nobody, readymade answers are dull and stupid. Help him to become more intelligent. Rather than giving him answers, give him situations and challenges so that his intelligence is sharpened and he asks more deeply -- so that the question penetrates to his very core, so the question becomes a question of life and death.

But that is not allowed. Parents are very much afraid, the society is very much afraid: if children are allowed to remain free, who knows? They may never come to the fold the parents belonged to, they may never go to the church -- Catholic, Protestant, this or that. Who knows what is going to happen when they become intelligent on their own? They will not be within your control. And this society goes into deeper and deeper politics to control everybody, to possess everybody's soul.

That's why the first thing they have to do is to destroy trust -- the trust of the child in himself, the confidence of the child in himself. They have to make him shaky and afraid. Once he is trembling, he is controllable. If he is confident he is uncontrollable. If he is confident he will assert himself, he will try to do his own thing. He will never want to do anybody else's thing. He will go on his own journey, he will not fulfill somebody else's desires for some trip. He will never be an imitator, he will never be a dull and dead person. He will be so alive, so pulsating with life, that nobody will be able to control him.

Destroy his trust and you have castrated him. You have taken his power: now he will always be powerless and always in need of somebody to dominate, direct and command him. Now he will be a good soldier, a good citizen, a good nationalist, a good Christian, a good Mohammedan, a good Hindu. Yes, he will be all these things, but he will not be a real individual. He will not have any roots, he will be uprooted his whole life. He will live without roots -- and to live without roots is to live in misery, is to live in hell. Just as trees need roots in the earth, man is also a tree and needs roots in existence or else he will live a very unintelligent life. He may succeed in the world, he may become very famous....

Just the other day, I was reading a story:

Three surgeons, old friends, met on holiday. On the beach, sitting under the sun, they started boasting. The first said, "I came across a man who had lost both of his legs in the war. I gave him artificial legs, and it has been a miracle. Now he has become one of the greatest runners in the world! There is every possibility that in the next coming Olympics he is going to win."

The other said, "That's nothing. I came across a woman who fell from a thirty-story building: her face was completely crushed. I did a great job of plastic surgery. Now just the other day I came to know through the newspapers that she has become the world beauty queen."

The third was a humble man. They both looked at him and asked, "What have you done lately? What's new?"
The man said, "Nothing much -- and moreover, I am not allowed to say anything about it."
Both his colleagues became more curious. They said, "But we are friends, we can keep your secret. You need not be worried, it will not leak out."

So he said, "Okay, if you say so, if you promise. A man was brought to me: he had lost his head in a car accident. I was at a loss to know what to do. I rushed into my garden just to think what to do, and suddenly I came across a cabbage. Finding nothing else, I transplanted the cabbage in place of the head. And do you know what? That man has become the prime minister of India."

You can destroy the child; still, he can become the prime minister of India. There is no inherent impossibility of becoming successful without intelligence. In fact it is more difficult to become successful with intelligence, because the intelligent person is inventive. He is always ahead of his time; it takes time to understand him.

The unintelligent person is easily understood. He fits with the gestalt of the society; the society has values and criteria by which to judge him. But it takes years for the society to evaluate a genius.

I am not saying that a person who has no intelligence cannot become successful, cannot become famous -- but still he will remain phony. And that is the misery: you can become famous, but if you are phony you live in misery. You don't know what blessings life is showering on you, you will never know. You do not have enough intelligence to know. You will never see the beauty of existence, because you don't have the sensitivity to know it. You will never see the sheer miracle that surrounds you, that crosses your path in millions of ways every day. You will never see it, because to see it you need a tremendous capacity to understand, to feel, to be.

This society is a power-oriented society. This society is still utterly primitive, utterly barbarian. A few people -- politicians, priests, professors -- a few people are dominating millions. And this society is run in such a way that no child is allowed to have intelligence. It is a sheer accident that once in a while a Buddha arrives on the earth -- a sheer accident.

Somehow, once in a while, a person escapes from the clutches of the society. Once in a while a person remains unpoisoned by the society. That must be because of some error, some mistake of the society. Otherwise the society succeeds in destroying your roots, in destroying your trust in yourself. And once that is done, you will never be able to trust anybody.

Once you are incapable of loving yourself, you will never be able to love anybody. That is an absolute truth, there are no exceptions to it. You can love others only if you are able to love yourself.

But the society condemns self-love. It says it is selfishness, it says it is narcissistic. Yes, self-love can become narcissistic but it is not necessarily so. It can become narcissistic if it never moves beyond itself, it can become a kind of selfishness if it becomes confined to yourself. Otherwise, self-love is the beginning of all other loves.

A person who loves himself sooner or later starts overflowing with love. A person who trusts himself cannot distrust anybody, even those who are going to deceive him, even those who have already deceived him. Yes, he cannot even distrust them, because now he knows trust is far more valuable than anything else.

You can cheat a person -- but in what can you cheat him? You can take some money or something else from him. But the man who knows the beauty of trust will not be distracted by these small things. He will still love you, he will still trust you. And then a miracle happens: if a man really trusts you, it is impossible to cheat him, almost impossible.

It happens every day in your life, too. Whenever you trust somebody it becomes impossible for him to cheat you, to deceive you. Sitting on the platform in a railway station, you don't know the person who is sitting by your side -- a stranger, a complete stranger -- and you say to him, "Just watch my luggage, I have to go to purchase a ticket. Please, just take care of the luggage." And you go. You trust an absolute stranger. But it almost never happens that the stranger deceives you. He could have deceived you if you had not trusted him.

Trust has a magic in it. How can he deceive you now that you have trusted him? How can he fall so low? He will never be able to forgive himself if he deceives you.

There is an intrinsic quality in human consciousness to trust and to be trusted. Everybody enjoys being trusted, it is respect from the other person; and when you trust a stranger it is more so. There is no reason to trust him, and still you trust him. You raise the man to such a high pedestal, you value the man so much, it is almost impossible for him to fall from that height. And if he falls he will never be able to forgive himself, he will have to carry the weight of guilt his whole life.

A man who trusts himself comes to know the beauty of it -- comes to know that the more you trust yourself, the more you bloom; the more you are in a state of letgo and relaxation, the more you are settled and serene, the more you are calm, cool and quiet.
And it is so beautiful that you start trusting more and more people, because the more you trust, the more your calmness deepens, your coolness goes deeper and deeper to the very core of your being. And the more you trust, the more you soar high. A man who can trust will sooner or later know the logic of trust. And then one day he is bound to try to trust the unknown.


It is only when you can trust the unknown that you can trust a master, never before it, because the master represents nothing but the unknown. He represents the uncharted, he represents the infinite, the unbounded. He represents the oceanic, he represents the wild, he represents God.

Prageeta,
you say (ask): "Why is it so hard to don't I trust you?"

It is simple: you don't trust yourself. Start trusting yourself -- that is the fundamental lesson, the first lesson. Start loving yourself. If you don't love yourself, who else is going to love you? But remember, if you only love yourself, your love will be very poor.

A great Jewish mystic, Hillel, has said, "If you are not for yourself, who is going to be for you?" And also, "If you are only for yourself, then what meaning can your life ever have?" -- a tremendously significant statement. Remember it: love yourself, because if you don't love yourself nobody else will ever be able to love you. You cannot love a person who hates himself.
And on this unfortunate earth, almost everybody hates himself, everybody condemns himself. How can you love a person who is condemnatory towards himself? He will not believe you. He cannot love himself -- how can you dare? He cannot love himself -- how can you love him? He will suspect some game, some trick, some trip. He will suspect that you are trying to deceive him in the name of love. He will be very cautious, alert, and his suspicion will poison your being.

If you love a person who hates himself, you are trying to destroy his concept about himself. And nobody easily drops his concept about himself; that is his identity. He will fight with you, he will prove to you that he is right and you are wrong.
That's what is happening in every love relationship -- let me call it every so-called love relationship. It is happening between every husband and wife, every lover and beloved, every man and every woman. How can you destroy the other's concept about himself? That is his identity, that is his ego, that's how he knows himself. If you take it away he will not know who he is. It is too risky; he cannot drop his concept so easily. He will prove to you that he is not worth loving, he is only worth hating.
And the same is the case with you. You also hate yourself; you cannot allow anybody else to love you. Whenever somebody comes with loving energy around you, you shrink, you want to escape, you are afraid. You know perfectly well that you are unworthy of love, you know that only on the surface do you look so good, so beautiful; deep down you are ugly. And if you allow this person to love you, sooner or later -- and it is going to be sooner than later -- he will come to know who you are in reality.

How long will you be able to pretend with a person with whom you have to live in love? You can pretend in the marketplace, you can pretend in the Lions' Club and the Rotary Club -- smiles, all smiles. You can do beautiful acting and role-playing. But if you live with a woman or a man for twenty-four hours a day, then it is tiring to go on smiling and smiling and smiling. Then the smile tires you, because it is phony. It is just an exercise of the lips, and the lips become tired.

How can you go on being sweet? Your bitterness will surface. Hence by the time the honeymoon is over, everything is over. Both have known each other's reality, both have known each other's phoniness, both have known each other's falsity.
One is afraid to become intimate. To be intimate means you will have to put aside the role. And you know who you are: worthless, just dirt. That's what you have been told from the very beginning. Your parents, your teachers, your priests, your politicians, all have been telling you that you are dirt, worthless. Nobody has ever accepted you. Nobody has given you the feeling that you are loved and respected, that you are needed -- that this existence will miss you, that without you this existence will not be the same, that without you there will be a hole. Without you this universe is going to lose some poetry, some beauty: a song will be missed, a note will be missed, there will be a gap -- nobody has told you that.

And that's what my work here is: to destroy the distrust that has been created in you about yourself, to destroy all condemnation that has been imposed on you, to take it away from you and to give you a feeling that you are loved and respected, loved by existence. God has created you because he loved you. He loved you so much that he could not resist the temptation to create you.

When a painter paints, he paints because he loves. Vincent van Gogh continuously painted the sun his whole life, he loved the sun so much. In fact it was the sun that drove him mad. For one year continuously he was standing and painting under the hot sun. His whole life revolved around the sun. And the day he was content painting the painting that he had always wanted to paint -- and to paint this painting he had painted many others, but he had not been contented with them -- the day he was contented, the day he could say, "Yes, this is the thing that I wanted to paint," he committed suicide, because, he said, "My work is done. I have done the thing that I came for. My destiny is fulfilled, now it is pointless to live."

His whole life a devotion to a certain painting? He must have been madly in love with the sun. He looked at the sun so long that it destroyed his eyes, his vision, it drove him mad.

When a poet composes a song it is because he loves it. God has painted you, sung you, danced you. God loves you! If you don't see any meaning in the word god don't be worried; call it existence, call it the whole. The existence loves you, otherwise you would not be here.

Relax into your being, you are cherished by the whole. That's why the whole goes on breathing in you, pulsating in you. Once you start feeling this tremendous respect and love and trust of the whole in you, you will start growing roots into your being. You will trust yourself. And only then can you trust me. Only then can you trust your friends, your children, your husband, your wife. Only then can you trust the trees and the animals and the stars and the moon. Then one simply lives as trust. It is no more a question of trusting this or that; one simply trusts. And to trust is simply to be religious.

That's what sannyas is all about. Sannyas is going to undo all that the society has done. It is not just accidental that priests are against me, politicians are against me, parents are against me, the whole establishment is against me; it is not accidental. I can understand the absolutely clear logic of it. I am trying to undo what they have done. I am sabotaging the whole pattern of this slave society.
My effort is to create rebels, and the beginning of the rebel is to trust in oneself. If I can help you to trust in yourself, I have helped you. Nothing else is needed, everything else follows of its own accord.


The second question:

Beloved Osho, John Lilly has said, “What the mind believes is true or becomes true.” Would you please comment on this?

Sambuddho, that's what has been happening down the ages. That is the way of autohypnosis. John Lilly is absolutely wrong. "What the mind believes," he says, "is true...." It is not. It only appears true.

And he says "... or it becomes true." It never becomes true by being believed, but it starts appearing true. Yes, for the believer it becomes true, although it is not true, because belief begins in ignorance. Belief cannot create truth; truth is already the case.
Remember the first preliminary of Atisha: truth is. You need not believe in it for it to be. Your belief or your disbelief is not going to make any difference to the truth. Truth is truth, whether you believe or you disbelieve.

But if you believe in something it starts appearing as true to you at least. That's what the meaning of belief is: belief means to believe in something as true -- you know that you don't know, you know that the truth is unknown to you, but in your ignorance you start believing, because belief is cheap.

To discover truth is arduous, it needs a long pilgrimage. It needs a great emptying of the mind, it needs a great cleansing of the heart. It needs a certain innocence, a rebirth: you have to become a child again.

Only very few people have ever dared to discover truth. And it is risky, because it may not console you; it has no obligation to console you. It is risky: it may shatter all that you have known before, and you will have to rearrange your whole life. It is dangerous: it may destroy all your illusions, it may shatter all your dreams. It is really going through fire; it is going to burn you as you are, it is going to kill you as you are. And who knows what will happen later on?

How can the seed know that by dying in the soil it will become a great tree? It will not be there to witness the happening. How can the seed know that one day, if it dies, there will be great foliage, green leaves, great branches, and flowers and fruits? How can the seed know? The seed will not be there. The seed has to disappear before it can happen. The seed has never met the tree. The seed has to disappear and die.

Only very few people have that much courage. It really needs guts to discover truth. You will die as yourself. You will certainly be born, but how can you be convinced of it? What guarantee is there? There is no guarantee.
Hence, unless you are with a master who has died and is reborn, who has crucified himself and is resurrected -- unless you come across a man like Christ or Buddha or Atisha -- you will not be able to gather enough courage.

Seeing Atisha, something may start stirring in your heart, a chord may be touched, something may be triggered, a synchronicity. The presence of somebody who has arrived may create a great longing in you, may become the birth of an intense passionate search for truth.

Belief cannot give you the truth, it only pretends. It is cheap, it is a plastic flower. You need not take all the trouble of growing a rosebush, you can simply go to the market and purchase plastic flowers -- and they are more lasting too, in fact they are almost eternal. Once in a while you can wash them, and they are fresh again. They will not deceive you, but at least they can deceive the neighbors, and that is the point. You will know all along that they are plastic flowers. How can you forget it? You have purchased them! The neighbors may be deceived, but how can you be deceived?

And I don't think that even the neighbors are deceived, because they have also purchased plastic flowers. They know they are deceiving you, they know you are deceiving them. Everybody is perfectly aware that everybody else is deceiving. "But this is how life is," people say. Nobody is really deceived. People just pretend to be deceived. You pretend that you have real flowers, others pretend that they are deceived. Just watch, observe, and what I am saying will be experienced by you. It is a simple fact; I am not talking philosophy, just stating facts.

What John Lilly says is utter nonsense. He says, "What the mind believes is true." It is never true, because belief has nothing to do with truth. You can believe that this is night but just by your believing, this is not going to become night. But you can believe, and you can close your eyes and for you it is night -- but only for you, remember, not in truth. You are living in a kind of hallucination.

There is this danger in belief: it makes you feel that you know the truth. And because it makes you feel that you know the truth, this becomes the greatest barrier in the search. Believe or disbelieve and you are blocked -- because disbelief is also nothing but belief in a negative form.

The Catholic believes in God, the communist believes in no God: both are believers. Go to Kaaba or go to the Comintern, go to Kailash or to the Kremlin, it is all the same. The believer believes it is so, the nonbeliever believes it is not so. And because both have already settled without taking the trouble to go and discover it, the deeper is their belief, the stronger is their belief, the greater is the barrier. They will never go on a pilgrimage, there is no point. They will live surrounded by their own illusion, self-created, self-sustained; it may be consoling, but it is not liberating. Millions of people are wasting their lives in belief and disbelief.

The inquiry into truth begins only when you drop all believing. You say, "I would like to encounter the truth on my own. I will not believe in Christ and I will not believe in Buddha. I would like to become a christ or a buddha myself, I would like to be a light unto myself."

Why should one be a Christian? It is ugly. Be a christ if you can be, but don't be a Christian. Be a buddha if you have any respect for yourself, but don't be a Buddhist. The Buddhist believes. Buddha knows.

When you can know, when knowing is possible, why settle for believing? But again, the society would like you to believe, because believers are good people, obedient, law-abiding. They follow all formalities and etiquette, they are never trouble-makers. They simply follow the crowd, whichever crowd they happen to be in; they simply go with the crowd. They are not real men, they are sheep. Humanity has not yet arrived.

Somebody once said to George Bernard Shaw, "What do you think about civilization?"
He said, "It is a good idea. Somebody should try it."
It has not yet been tried. Humanity is still arriving; we are still groping between animality and humanity. We are in limbo: man has to be born, man has to be given birth to; we have to prepare the ground for man to appear.

And the most significant thing that will help that man to come will be if we can drop believing -- if we can drop being Christians, Hindus, Mohammedans, Jainas, Buddhists, communists. If you can drop believing, immediately your energy will take a new turn: it will start inquiring. And to inquire is beautiful. Your life will become a pilgrimage to truth, and in that very pilgrimage you grow.
Growth is a by-product of the inquiry into truth. Believers never grow, they remain childish. And remember, to be childlike and to be childish are poles apart, they are not the same thing. It is beautiful to be childlike. The man of trust is childlike and the man of belief is childish. To be childlike is the ultimate in growth; that is the very culmination -- consciousness has come to the ultimate peak. To be childlike means to be a sage, and to be childish means to be just un-grownup.

The average mental age of human beings on the earth today is not more than twelve years. When for the first time this was discovered, it was such a shock. Nobody had ever thought about it; it was just by accident that it became known. In the First World War, for the first time in human history, the people who were candidates, who wanted to enter the army, were examined. Their mental age was inquired into, their IQ was determined. This was a great revelation -- that they were not more than twelve years; the average age was just twelve years.

This is childishness. The body goes on growing, and the mind has stopped at the age of twelve. What kind of humanity have we created on this earth? Why does the mind stop at twelve? Because by the time one is twelve, one has gathered all kinds of beliefs; one is already a believer, one already "knows" what truth is. One is a Christian, another is a communist; one believes in God, one does not believe in God; one believes in The Bible and the other believes in Das Kapital; one believes in the Bhagavad Gita, another believes in the Red Book of Mao Zedong.

We have drilled concepts and ideologies into the innocent minds of poor children. They are already becoming knowers. Do you know -- by the age of seven, a child already knows fifty percent of all that he will ever know. And by the time he is fourteen he has almost arrived; now there is nowhere to go, he has only to vegetate. Now he will exist as a cabbage. If he goes to college then, as they say, he may become a cauliflower. A cabbage with a college education is a cauliflower. But there is not much difference, just labels change. The cabbage becomes an M.A., a Ph.D., this and that, and just to show respect we call it a cauliflower. But the mental age is twelve.

The real man grows to the very end. Even while he is dying, he is growing. Even the last moment of his life will still be an inquiry, a search, a learning. He will still be inquiring -- now inquiring into death. He will be fascinated: death is such an unknown phenomenon, such a mystery, far more mysterious than life itself -- how can an intelligent man be afraid? If in life he has not been afraid to go into the uncharted and the unknown, at the moment of death he will be thrilled, ecstatic. Now the last moment has come: he will be entering into the darkness, the dark tunnel of death. This is the greatest adventure one can ever go on; he will be learning.

A real man never believes; he learns. A real man never becomes knowledgeable; he always remains open, open to truth. And he always remembers that "It is not that truth has to adjust to me, but just vice versa: I have to adjust to truth." The believer tries to adjust truth to himself, the seeker adjusts himself to truth. Remember the difference; the difference is tremendous. One who believes, he says, "Truth should be like this, this is my belief."

Just think of a Christian.... If God appears not like Jesus Christ but like Krishna, not on the cross but with a flute and girlfriends dancing around him, the Christian will close his eyes; he will say, "This is not my cup of tea." Girlfriends? Can you think of Jesus with girlfriends? The cross and girlfriends can't go together. Jesus hanging on the cross and girlfriends dancing around? It won't fit, it will be very bizarre. He was waiting for Christ to appear, and instead of Christ this guy, Krishna, appears: he seems to be debauched. And the flute? The world is suffering and people are hungry and they need bread -- and this man is playing on the flute? He seems to be utterly uncompassionate, he seems to be indulgent. The Christian cannot believe in Krishna: if God appears as Krishna, then the Christian will say, "This is not God."

And the same will be the case with the Hindu who was waiting for Krishna: if Christ appears, that will not be his idea of God -- so sad, such a long face, so gloomy, with such suffering on his face.
Christians say Jesus never laughed. I don't think they are right, and I don't think they are representing the real Christ, but that's what they have managed to propagate. The Hindu cannot accept the revelation; he must think this is some kind of nightmare. Jesus will not appeal to him.

The believer cannot even trust his own experience. Even if truth is revealed, he will reject it, unless it fits with him. He is more important than truth itself: truth has an obligation to fit with him. He is the criterion, he is the decisive factor. This kind of man can never know truth; he is already prejudiced, poisoned.

The man who wants to know truth has to be capable of dropping all concepts about truth. Everything about truth has to be dropped. Only then can you know truth. Know well: to know about truth is not to know truth. Whatsoever you know may be utter nonsense; there is every possibility that it is utter nonsense. In fact people can be conditioned to believe any kind of nonsense; they can be convinced.

Once I went to address a conference of theosophists. Now, theosophists are people who will believe any bullshit -- ANY! The more shitty it is, the more believable. So I just played a joke on them. I simply invented something; I invented a society called "Sitnalta." They were all dozing, they became alert. "Sitnalta?" I made the word by just reading "Atlantis" backwards. And then I told them, "This knowledge comes from Atlantis, the continent that disappeared in the Atlantic ocean."

And then I talked about it: "There are really not seven chakras but seventeen. That great ancient esoteric knowledge is lost, but a society of enlightened masters still exists, and it still works. It is a very very esoteric society, very few people are allowed to have any contact with it; its knowledge is kept utterly secret."

And I talked all kinds of nonsense that I could manage. And then the president of the society said, "I have heard about this society." Now it was my turn to be surprised. And about whatsoever I had said, he said that it was the first time that the knowledge of this secret society had been revealed so exactly.

And then letters started coming to me. One man even wrote saying, "I thank you very much for introducing this inner esoteric circle to the theosophists, because I am a member of the society, and I can vouch that whatsoever you have said is absolutely true."

There are people like these who are just waiting to believe in anything, because the more nonsensical a belief is, the more important it appears to be. The more absurd it is, the more believable -- because if something is logical, then there is no question of believing in it.

You don't believe in the sun, you don't believe in the moon. You don't believe in the theory of relativity: either you understand it or you don't understand it; there is no question of belief. You don't believe in gravitation; there is no need. Nobody believes in a scientific theory -- it is logical. Belief is needed only when something illogical, something utterly absurd, is propounded.
Tertullian said, "I believe in God because it is absurd: CREDO QUIA ABSURDUM, my creed is the absurd."

All beliefs are absurd. If a belief is very logical, it will not create belief in you. So people go on inventing things.
Man is basically a coward, he does not want to inquire. And he does not want to say "I don't know" either.
Now, that president of the theosophical society who said, "I have heard about this society" -- he cannot say that he does not know, he does not have even that much courage. To accept one's ignorance needs courage. To accept that you don't know is the beginning of real knowledge. You go on believing, because there are holes in your life which have to be filled, and belief is easily available.

There are three hundred religions on the earth. One truth, and three hundred religions? One God, and three hundred religions? One existence, and three hundred religions? And I am not talking about sects -- because each religion has dozens of sects, and then there are sub-sects of sects, and it goes on and on. If you count all the sects and all the sub-sects, then there will be three thousand or even more.

How can so many beliefs, contradictory to each other, go on? People have a certain need -- the need not to appear ignorant. How to fulfill this need? Gather a few beliefs. And the more absurd the belief is, the more knowledgeable you appear, because nobody else knows about it.

There are people who believe in a hollow earth, and that inside the earth there is a civilization. Now, if somebody says so you cannot deny it; you cannot accept it, but at least you have to listen attentively. And that serves a purpose: everybody wants to be listened to attentively. And one thing is certain, this man knows more than you. You don't know whether the earth is hollow or not; this man knows. And who knows? He may be right. He can gather a thousand and one proofs; he can argue for it, he can propound it in such a way that you at least have to be silent if you don't agree.

Believers and believers and believers -- but where is truth? There are so many believers, but where is truth? If John Lilly is right, then the world would be full of truth, you would come across it everywhere. Everybody would have truth, because everybody is a believer. No, it is all nonsense.

He says, "What the mind believes is true or becomes true." No. What the mind believes is never true, because truth needs no belief. Belief is a barrier to truth. And what the mind believes never becomes true, because truth is not becoming, truth is being; it is already the case. You have to see it -- or you can go on avoiding seeing it, but it is there. Nothing has to be added to it, it is eternally there.

And the best way to avoid truth is to believe. Then you need not look at it. Your eyes become full of belief; belief functions as dust on the eyes. You become closed into yourself, the belief becomes a prison around you. Belief closes you: then you are living within yourself in a windowless existence, and you can go on believing whatsoever you want to believe. But remember, it is belief, and belief is a lie.

Let me say that even when the truth is told to you, don't believe in it! Explore, inquire, search, experiment, experience: don't believe in it. Even when truth is conveyed to you, if you believe in it, you turn it into a lie. A truth believed is a lie, belief turns truth into a lie.

Believe in Buddha and you believe in a lie. Believe in Christ and you believe in a lie. Don't believe in Christ, don't believe in Buddha, don't believe in me. What I say, listen to it attentively, intelligently; experiment, experience. And when you have experienced, will you need to believe in it? There will be no doubt left, so what will be the point of belief? Belief is a way of repressing doubt: you doubt, hence you need belief.

The rock of belief represses the spring of doubt.

When you know, you know! You know it is so; there is no doubt left. Your experience has expelled all darkness and all doubt. Truth is: you are full of it. Truth never creates belief.
How to attain to truth? By dropping all kinds of beliefs. And remember, I am saying all kinds -- belief in me is included. Experience me, come along with me, let me share what I have seen, but don't believe, don't be in a hurry. Don't say, "Now what is the point? Now Osho has seen it, all that is left for me is to believe it."

What I have seen cannot become your experience unless you see it. And it is the experience of truth that delivers you from ignorance, from bondage, from misery. It is not the belief that delivers you, it is truth.
Jesus says, "Truth liberates." But how to attain to truth? It is not a question of belief, but a question of meditativeness. And what is meditation? Meditation is emptying your mind completely of all belief, ideology, concept, thought. Only in an empty mind, when there is no dust left on the mirror, truth reflects. That reflection is a benediction.


Enough for today.


The last question:

Beloved Osho, Thank you so much just for life. All the beautiful methods are no good anymore. ‘I’ will let the mind drop and the methods too. I fear that you will send me back to hell.

Sarvesh, methods are never of any use. Methods have never been any good, but they still serve a purpose. The purpose is negative. If you have a thorn in your foot, you need another thorn to pull it out. Once the first thorn is pulled out by the second, don't put the second back in the wound just out of gratefulness. Throw away both! The second thorn is as much a thorn as the first; their qualities are not different.

Because your mind is so full of rubbish, you need something to pull it out. But whatsoever is going to pull it out is rubbish in its own way; it is the same. Poison is needed to kill poison. Don't cling to the second poison, thinking it is medicine; don't become addicted to the second poison.
It is good that you say: "All the beautiful methods are no good any more."
They never were. But they still serve a purpose, because man lives in such stupidity that he has to be pulled out of it. And remember, your lies, your beliefs, your ignorance, have to be dropped somehow; some ways and means have to be invented. Once your mind is dropped, you will see the whole ridiculousness of all the methods. Then you will understand that they were never needed at all.
But don't start talking about it to others, because there are many people who may drop them from the very beginning, seeing that if they are not needed then why bother? They are needed, although there comes a time when they have to be dropped. Use them, and drop them. All methods are like ladders: when you have climbed up the ladder and you have reached the upper floor, you need not bother about it, it can be thrown away.
In fact it should be thrown away. Keeping it may show some unconscious desire in you to go back; you want to keep the ladder there in case you decide to go back to your old rubbish. The ladder can help in that way too. A ladder is neutral -- it can take you to the upper floor, it can bring you back down to the old situation. But the ladder cannot direct you.
In fact the moment you have climbed up the ladder, you have used it and reached a different plane of life, a different plane of understanding, throw the ladder away immediately, before you start clinging to it.
So it is good that you think methods are no good any more.
"...'I' will let the mind drop and the methods too."
If methods are no good any more, Sarvesh, where is the mind? And if the mind is still there to be dropped, then please don't be in a hurry: the methods still have a little function to fulfill.
You will not be able to let the mind drop. Who are you except the mind? Who will drop the mind, who will let the mind drop? You are not yet; you will know yourself only when the mind is dropped. When the mind disappears, you will know who you are. Before that, you don't know. It is just the mind thinking about dropping the mind. Mind is very subtle, very cunning; it can go on playing new games. It can say, "Yes it is so beautiful to drop the mind." And it is still the mind! And the mind can say, "There is no need for any method, Sarvesh. You can drop me easily -- it is up to you."
The mind is playing a very subtle trick. It is helping you to drop the methods first, and then the mind thinks, "We will see -- we will see if you can drop me!"
If it has really been understood -- that methods are no longer useful -- it is synonymous to that understanding that the mind is dropped. They mean the same thing: to know that methods are no longer needed, no longer useful, is to see that the mind is no more there. Mind is method, mind is technique. Mind cannot exist without methods, methods cannot exist without mind; they go together. They are two aspects of the same energy.
And you say: "I fear that you will send me back to hell."

If methods are really dropped, there is no way to go back to hell. Even if I want to send you, I cannot. Methods are needed to go to hell. Methods are needed to come out of hell, methods are needed to go into hell, but no method is needed to go to heaven. When you are out of hell, you are in heaven.
So the whole question is how to be out of hell? Out of hell is heaven. Heaven is not some place where you have to go, otherwise methods would be needed, paths and ways would be needed. No paths and no ways are needed. All paths, all ways, lead into hell. But if you are in hell, then you will have to use the same paths and the same ways to come back.
Let me tell you one of the most beautiful parables that has ever been invented by man, the parable of Adam and Eve eating the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge. The moment they have eaten the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge they fall -- the original fall. They are no more in paradise, they are no more deathless, they are no more in eternity; they have lost contact. What has happened? Mind has been created.
That is the meaning of the parable. Eating from the Tree of Knowledge creates the mind; the moment they ate the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge, mind was created. Adam and Eve are still in the same place, in the same space, they have not gone anywhere. But the mind is created -- and once the mind is there, paradise is lost, forgotten. One falls asleep and starts dreaming of hells, death, etcetera, etcetera. Now you will have to vomit the fruit of knowledge.
You will have to vomit the mind out of your system. Once you have vomited knowledge out of your system, suddenly you will be awakened to the fact that you are in paradise. And you will start laughing at the whole ridiculousness of it, because you will know, you will become perfectly aware, that you had never been anywhere else. You have always been here, always and always: you had just fallen asleep and had a nightmare. Now that the poison is out of your system, the nightmare is finished.
We are in the garden of Eden, right now, this very moment. Nobody can send you to hell, Sarvesh, except knowledge, except methods, except the mind.
Try to understand. Rather than being in a hurry to drop anything, try to understand. Become more aware, become more alert, more watchful, more observant, and methods will disappear and mind will disappear in the same instant. And then there is no hell -- in fact there never has been, you had only imagined it. It is all paradise and always paradise. We are in God, we are gods.
Enough for today.