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Chapter 6

Sannyas is for Lions
(The entire Chapter 6 has been deleted in the new edition)

The first question:

Beloved Osho,
Can You explain to us the difference between emptying oneself and effacing oneself?
And what is the role of individuality in dissolution?

Divya, the process of emptying oneself and the process of effacing oneself have nothing in common. Not only are they different, they are diametrically opposite.
Emptying oneself brings individuality, more and more individuality. Emptying oneself means emptying oneself of all that is implied in personality.

Personality is a farce, personality is pseudo, personality is that which is given to you by the society. Personality is imposed on you from the outside; it is a mask. Individuality is your very being. Individuality is that which you bring into the world, individuality is God's gift.
Personality is ugly because it is pseudo. And the more personality you have, the less is the possibility for individuality to grow. The personality starts occupying the whole of your space. It is like a cancerous growth. It goes on growing, it possesses you totally. It leaves no space for individuality to have even its own corner. The personality has to be dropped, so that the individuality can be.
Individuality is a non-egoistic phenomenon; it is pure am-ness, it has no 'I' in it. Personality is nothing but 'I': it has no am-ness in it. Personality is aggressive, violent, dominating, political. Individuality is silent, loving, compassionate; it is religious.

Emptying oneself means emptying of all content -- just as you empty a room of all the junk that has gathered there, down the years. When you have emptied the room of all the furniture and all the things, you have not destroyed the room, not at all; you have given it more roominess, more space. When all the furniture is gone, the room asserts itself, the room is.

Effacing oneself means destroying the room itself -- destroying the very space of your being, destroying the very uniqueness of your existence, destroying the gift of God. Effacing yourself means becoming a slave.

Individuality gives you mastery; it makes you very authentic, grounded, rooted. It gives you substance; you are no longer dream stuff. It gives you solidity, it gives you clarity, transparency, vision. It makes you aware of the beauty of existence, it makes you aware of the beauty of all. Effacing yourself destroys you, it is suicidal. You are not dropping your personality, you are dropping your very uniqueness. You are becoming more and more shadowy, rather than becoming more substantial. You are becoming a slave.
And the ironical thing is that if you efface yourself, the ego will remain. Now it will become a very subtle ego, so subtle that it will be almost impossible to detect it. Now it will claim humbleness, nobodiness, humility. But the claim will persist. It will say, "Look, I have effaced myself. I am no more."
But when you say, "I am no more" you are -- otherwise who is saying, "I am no more?"
A so-called saint was once asked, "Are you God?"
He said, "No" -- but immediately he added, "The sun rises in the morning, but it does not declare 'I am the sun.'"
In a vicarious way he is saying, "I am God. But I am like the sun which rises every morning but does not declare 'I am God.'"
I told the man who had related the incident to me, "Go back to that so-called saint, and tell him that the sun does not say, 'I am not the sun' either." The sun does not say, "I am the sun" or "I am not the sun" -- not because the sun is enlightened, but simply because it cannot speak! If it could speak, it would have declared it in a thousand and one ways. In fact it is declaring in a thousand and one ways: "I am here!" It is declaring it in the flowers, in the birds; it is declaring all over: "I am here!"

Once Krishnamurti was asked, "Why do you go on talking?"
He said, "This is simply my nature, to talk." He said, "I talk in the same way as the flower releases its fragrance."

The flower cannot talk, it has its own language; the fragrance is its language. The sun cannot talk, but the light that radiates from it is its way of communicating the fact: "I am here, I have arrived."
In Japan there is a saying: "Flowers don't talk." That saying is utterly wrong -- they talk. Of course they speak their own language. The Tibetan speaks his language; will you say that he does not talk? The Chinese speaks his own language; will you say he does not talk? Just because you cannot understand, will you say he is not talking? The Chinese has his own language, so does the sun, so do the flowers, so do the animals, the birds, the rocks. In millions of languages the whole world asserts itself.
But the humble person starts saying, "I am not. I am not an ego, I have effaced myself." But who is saying these things? The person who has emptied himself will not say such things. He will say, "I am, and I am for the first time. But now in my I-am-ness 'I' is only linguistic, a way of saying it. Existentially, there is only am-ness."

And let this be the criterion for whether you are emptying yourself or effacing yourself. If you are emptying yourself you will become more and more blissful, because you will become more and more spacious. You will become more and more available to God and to God's celebration. You will become open to existence and all its joys and all its blessings.

But if you are effacing yourself you will become more and more sad and heavy, you will become more and more dull and dead -- because effacing oneself is nothing but a slow suicide. Beware of it. And you have to be aware, very aware, because they both look alike.

The real danger in spiritual growth is from things which are diametrically opposite but look very alike. The real problem does not arise from things which are apparently opposite; the real problem arises with things which are not so apparently opposite, and yet they are opposite.

The real opposite of hate is not love, the real opposite of love is not hate -- it is so apparent, who can be deceived by it? The real opposite of love is pseudo-love: love that pretends to be love, and is not. One has to be watchful there.

The real opposite of compassion is not anger. The real opposite of compassion is cultivated compassion: compassion that is not within you but is only in your character, compassion that you have painted on your circumference.

The real opposite of your smiles are not tears, but smiles which are painted, smiles which don't go any deeper than the lips, which are nothing but exercises of the lips. No heart collaborates with them, no feeling stands behind them. There is nobody behind the smile, the smile is just a learned trick. Tears are not opposite to smiles, they are only complementaries. But the false smile is the real opposite.
Remember it always, the false is the enemy of the true. If your smile is true and your tears are true, they are friends, they will help each other because they both will strengthen the truth of your being. If your tears are false and your smiles are false, then too, they are friends; they will strengthen your falsity, your personality, your mask.

The conflict is between the real and the unreal or pretended. Emptying oneself is of tremendous value, but effacing yourself is dangerous. Effacing yourself is a subtle way of the ego -- the ego coming from the back door.

And naturally it will make you more and more serious. That's why your so-called saints look so serious. Their seriousness has a reason in it. The reason is, they are maintaining humbleness which is not really there. And to maintain something which is not really there is arduous, hard. One has to be continuously on guard. Just a little slip here and there, and the reality will assert, and it will destroy all that you have maintained for so long. It will destroy your respectability.

Anything that has to be maintained will keep you serious and sad, deep down afraid of being caught red-handed, of being caught in your falsity. You will escape from people if you are carrying something false in you. You will not allow anybody to be friendly, to be intimate with you, because in intimacy the danger is that the other may be able to see something which strangers cannot see. You will keep people at a distance; you will run and rush away from people. You will have only formal relationships, but you will not really relate, because to really relate means to expose yourself.

Hence your so-called saints escaped into the monasteries. It was out of fear. If they were in the marketplace they would be caught; it would be discovered that they are cheating, that they are deceiving, that they are hypocrites. In the monasteries they can maintain their hypocrisy and nobody will ever be able to detect it. And moreover, there are other hypocrites there; they can all maintain their conspiracy together more easily than each single hypocrite can maintain his alone.

Monasteries came into existence for escapists. But you can live even in the world in a monastic way, keeping people always at a distance, never allowing anybody access to your inner being, never opening up, never allowing anybody to have a peek into you to see who you are, never looking into people's eyes, avoiding people's eyes, looking sideways. And always in a hurry, so that everybody knows you are so occupied, you don't have any time to say hello, to hold somebody's hand, to sit with somebody informally. You are so busy, you are always on the go.

You will not even allow intimacy with those who are close to you -- husbands, wives, children -- with them also you will have a formal relationship, an institutional relationship.
Hence marriage has become an institution. It is really ugly to see something so tremendously beautiful becoming an institution. And if people look so miserable it is natural. If you live in institutions you will be miserable.

Divya, you ask me: "Can you explain to us the difference between emptying oneself and effacing oneself?"

Effacing oneself is the way of the ego, emptying oneself is the way of understanding. In emptying yourself you simply understand the ways of the ego -- and in that understanding, the ego disappears of its own accord. You don't drop it, you don't have to drop it. You don't fight with it. It is not found.

When you look within with attention, with the light of awareness, you cannot find any ego there. So the question does not arise of why or how one should efface oneself. There is nothing to efface! That which is, is, and cannot be effaced. And that which is not, is not, and there is no need to efface it.
Emptying oneself simply means seeing oneself. And then many things start dropping, because you were unnecessarily carrying them. In the first place, they don't exist. They are ghosts, nightmares; they disperse themselves when the light is brought in. Emptying oneself is a meditative process. Just looking in, deeply, with no prejudice, with no prefabricated ideology, neither for nor against, just looking in, and emptying starts happening.

And when you have emptied all content -- thoughts, desires, memories, projections, hopes -- when all is gone, for the first time you find yourself, because you are nothing but that pure space, that virgin space within you. Unburdened by anything, that contentless consciousness, that's what you are! Seeing it, realizing it, one is free. One is freedom, one is joy, one is bliss.

But effacing oneself is dangerous. It means you have accepted already that the ego is there and it has to be effaced. You have accepted an illusion, and now you want to destroy it. You have missed the first point. You have accepted that the rope is a snake, and now you are trying to kill the snake. You will be in great trouble. You will never be able to kill the snake, because in the first place there is none. You can go on beating the rope, but what about the snake? The snake will remain there.

The snake exists in your illusion; the snake does not exist outside, otherwise you could have killed it. But how can you kill a snake which is not? You are fighting with a shadow, and you are bound to be defeated.

Let this fundamental be remembered always: if you fight with anything false, you will be defeated. The false cannot be defeated, because it is false. How can you defeat something which is nonexistential? There is no way. The only way is, bring light and see.
Ihi passiko, come and see! In that very seeing, the snake is not found. The rope is there, the snake has disappeared. Now there is no need to efface yourself, no need to fight.

There are millions of people who try to become humble, but their whole effort is nonsense, sheer stupidity.

Once a man asked me, "Are you an egoist or a humble person?"
I said. "Neither. neti neti, neither this nor that. I cannot be either."
He said, "What are you talking about? One has to be either an egoist or a humble person."
I said, "You don't understand. You know nothing; you have never gone within yourself. If you are humble, you are an egoist standing on his head. Humbleness is an expression of the ego. I am neither. I am simply whatsoever I am, neither humble nor egoistic, because I have seen that there is no ego. How can there be humbleness then?"

Humbleness is diluted ego. But if there is no ego, how can you dilute it? If there is no snake, how can you take the poisonous teeth of the snake away? That's what humbleness is. The poisonous teeth have been removed from the snake; now the snake cannot hurt, now the snake cannot bite, now the snake cannot do any harm -- but the snake is there.
Those teeth were false, because the snake itself is false.

Buddha is neither egoistic nor humble. Both are impossible for the man of understanding. The ignorant person can be egoistic, can be humble -- both are aspects of ignorance. And the ignorant person can try to efface the ego, because it is so respectable not to have the ego. One becomes a saint by effacing the ego, one attains great prestige and power by effacing the ego. But it is the same game; the game has not changed.

My message to you is, please don't efface yourself. Be yourself, look within yourself, and in that very seeing, the ego disappears. Even to say "disappears" is not right: the ego is not found, it has never been there. Its existence depended on your not looking within yourself. Seen, it is no longer there -- it has never been there.

And then you are individuality, uniqueness, a unique expression of the divine. And then there is great rejoicing. You start blooming, the spring has come. You start dancing, you start singing. Great gratitude arises in you that God has made you a unique individual.

There has never been a person like you before, there is nobody else like you right now in the whole world, and there will never be anybody like you. Just see how much respect God has paid to you. You are a masterpiece -- unrepeatable, incomparable, utterly unique. Even the hardest heart, the rocklike heart, will start melting in gratitude. Tears will start flowing, tears of bliss and joy, tears which laugh.
But please remember, empty yourself, don't efface yourself.

The second question:

Beloved Osho, What os those who take sannyas in Poona, only to drop it back in their home environment

Anand Lionel, they are assholes. And they are assholes not because they drop sannyas but because they take it. Their idea is that by taking sannyas here they will gain something, and then back home they can drop it.

But if this idea is there from the very beginning, that "I am going to drop it when I am back home," sannyas will not be a blessing to you. It cannot be a blessing to such a cunning mind. You will become a sannyasin and yet you will not become a sannyasin.

I know there are people, at least ten percent of the people.... I know immediately when they come to take sannyas -- their eyes say it, their vibe says it, their whole being stinks of cunningness. But I respect people, I cannot say no. And then I think what is the harm? Let them play the game of being a sannyasin. And who knows? Sometimes a few people are caught too. In the beginning when they take sannyas they are just taking it to see what it is all about. But unawares they may be caught in it, they may be trapped.
Being here for three or four months as a sannyasin, they may find it almost impossible to drop it back home. But even if they drop it, that is their business. They are just being stupid. They are trying to have intimacy with me, because that intimacy can transform you, can give you a new birth. But the intimacy is possible only if there is not a wall of cunningness between you and me. And the wall is there.
I give them sannyas, seeing the wall, the Great China Wall, between me and them. I know they are not truly getting into it; they are just being clever. They are not clever, just being clever, because a really clever person will not deceive himself. And there are things you can be immensely benefited by, but only when you don't play games.

For example, love can be a transforming force in your life. But if you are just playing a role, acting, it is not going to enrich you. In fact, on the contrary, it may impoverish you more. If you love a woman or a man, without really loving, just pretending, then you are learning something, that love is futile. Your whole life may become poisoned. Each time you love, that cunningness will be there; it will circulate in your blood, in your being. And you will know from the very beginning that it is all a game. You will never become intimate with any person -- and intimacy is a revelation. Sannyas is the ultimate intimacy. You cannot be cunning. And if you are, you are deceiving only yourself.

But why, Anand Lionel, has this question arisen in you? You have taken sannyas only a few days ago. This must be lurking somewhere in your unconscious. This is your question, this may be your idea; maybe you are not very conscious about it. You may be thinking that you are asking the question for others, but others can ask questions for themselves; you need not worry about them. Who are you to be worried about them? Don't you have worries of your own? But this question must be there, somewhere deep in your unconscious; this must be your strategy. And still, I repeat, you may not be conscious of it, but the unconscious has erupted in this question.

But this is not exceptional. The world is full of assholes -- so if a few assholes manage to come here, it is not a surprise. It is natural. I keep a ten percent margin for them; ten percent of people are bound to be deceptive. In fact it is a miracle that it is only ten percent.

People have forgotten the language of commitment, involvement. People don't know the beauties of commitment, they don't know the joys of dedication. They don't know what it means to be utterly dedicated to something. To be utterly dedicated to something means giving birth to a soul in you. It integrates you, it gives you a backbone. Otherwise people who don't have any experience of commitment -- in love, in trust -- they live a life without a spine; they are spineless, they are just a hotchpotch, lousy. They are not really men; they have not yet arrived at that dignity of being a man.
To be a man means to be committed, to be involved, to be ready to go to the very extreme of some experience. If it appeals to you, if it convinces you, if it converts you, then one has to be ready to go wherever it leads you -- to the unknown, to the uncharted. Yes, there are many fears, and there are many problems to be faced and many challenges to be accepted, but this is how one grows, this is how one matures.
Millions of people in the world remain immature, childish, for the simple reason that they don't know how to commit themselves. They just remain rootless. And whenever a tree is rootless you can infer what is going to happen to the tree. Slowly slowly, all juice will disappear from the tree, because it is no longer connected to any source of juice. The sap will not flow in it, it will lose its greenness, it will not be young and alive any more. It will lose luster, grandeur, brilliance; it will lose all luminosity, it will not bloom. Springs will come and go, but it will just remain there, dead, dry.

That's what has happened to millions of people. They have lost their soil. Through sannyas I am trying to give you a soil that can nourish you, so that the sap can start flowing again in your system, so that again some juice flows in you, so that you become juicy again, so that again you are young, youthful, fresh.
Man has lost one quality, the quality of zestfulness. And without zest, what is life? Just waiting for death? It can't be anything else. Only with zest do you live; otherwise you vegetate.

Sannyas is not renunciation, it is a way to live life in its totality and intensity. It is the art of living life in all its dimensions, it is the way to live life in all its richness. It is not the old idea of sannyas. I am not creating monks and nuns -- no, not at all. I am creating alive people, vibrant, pulsating, zestful people, young and fresh, ready to go on any adventure in search of truth, in search of love, in search of God.
How can you drop sannyas? That's why I say they are assholes, not because they drop sannyas. They are assholes because they take it. They don't understand what they are doing. They are not aware of where they are moving. They are not conscious; they are just sleepwalkers, robots, zombies. When they see that so many people have become sannyasins, their mob psychology, their crowd mind, their sheep mind, immediately gives them the idea, "So I also have to become a sannyasin."

Why? Unless it is a decision that arises in your very innermost core, why be bothered with it? Unless you start having a love relationship with me, why be bothered with it? Unless I have touched a chord in your heart, unless some music has happened in you through me, why be bothered about it?
But they are not taking sannyas from me; they are taking sannyas from you, from other sannyasins. Seeing so many people in orange, and seeing so many people happy and joyous, they become jealous. They become competitive, they start feeling they are missing something. A dream arises in them: "I should also know what this sannyas is." Certainly they know that they will not be able to follow it the whole way, but they say, they argue, within themselves, "At least while you are here, why not be a sannyasin and have a taste of it? And then when you go back home just forget all about it, so nobody will know about it and you can be part of your old routine again."

This is how the mob mind functions. And sannyas is not for the mob mind, it is not for the sheepish mind. It is for lions.

And I am really surprised, Anand Lionel.... It seems I have given you the wrong name. A lion, asking such a question? The question arises out of a very cowardly mind. The question arises out of a very cunning mind. And still, I repeat, you may not be aware of it -- but that is more dangerous. If you are aware, something can be done.

That's why I am answering it, to make you aware of it. This is one of the transforming processes of life: if you become aware of something, you can get rid of it very easily. If you are not aware of it, there is no question of getting rid of it.

So sometimes I even have to be hard with you, sometimes I have to be really cruel with you -- because to wrench truths from the unconscious is not an easy affair. It is surgical, it hurts. And the surgery that I do, I do without any anaesthesia, because the unconscious has to be made conscious. So while I am talking to you and bringing some unconscious truth towards your consciousness, you cannot be put to sleep. If you are asleep, the unconscious will never become conscious.

So this psychological surgery has to be without any anaesthesia. The pain has to be accepted. And those who understand, they will welcome it. Not only will they welcome it, they will feel thankful, grateful, that I have brought something that was lurking deep down in the darkness into the conscious part of their mind. Now it can be dropped.

This is a miracle of consciousness. Anything that becomes conscious can be dropped very easily. This is the whole secret of psychoanalysis and all the other psychotherapies that have evolved out of psychoanalysis: to bring things from the unconscious to the conscious. That's the whole function of the psychoanalyst. Once they are conscious, you yourself are capable of dropping them -- because who wants to carry ugly things when one knows they are there? But ugly things can be carried for lives together if you are not aware.

And remember, the conscious itself wants to get rid of many things, but you don't allow it to have its say with you. Hence it has to find indirect ways. For example, in a dream it may communicate something to you, but by the morning you tend to forget it.

There are very few people who remember their dreams. Why? It is such a colorful experience, and the whole night you have been dreaming. Out of eight hours, for at least six hours you have been dreaming. And I am talking about normal people, who don't exist. What to say about the abnormal? They can manage to dream sixteen hours in eight hours! They can dream many dreams together, one dream overlapping another dream, dream into dream into dream. They can have such dreams... for example you can dream that you are going to a movie, and in the movie you see yourself on the screen as a person who is going to sleep, falls asleep and starts dreaming that he is going to a movie! This can go on and on and on, dreams within dreams within dreams.

I am not talking about abnormal people; even normal people, very normal people, dream six hours per night. In fact that is the greatest activity that you do. You don't do anything else for six hours every day. Six hours continuously dreaming! And in the morning all is forgotten; or only for a few seconds early on, for four or five seconds you remember a few things, a few fragments. And then soon, by the time you have taken your tea in bed, they have disappeared.

The unconscious tries hard, for six hours every night, to relate to you what you are doing with your life. But you don't listen. It tries in other ways too.
For example, this question is an effort of the unconscious to relate to you something that is there as a seed. The unconscious always wants to communicate with the conscious. Why? Because the unconscious is so burdened, so heavy, it wants to unburden itself. And how can it unburden? There is only one way: to relate to the conscious.

Hence Freud developed the technique of free association. He had to invent the couch, because if the patient is sitting it is difficult to connect with the unconscious. Our habitual way of connecting with the unconscious is by lying down on the bed; that has become a permanent habit, you have to be horizontal. The Freudian couch is significant; it helps your unconscious to relate to the conscious.

And Freud used to disappear behind the couch, behind a curtain -- because if somebody is present, the unconscious may remain shy, embarrassed, and the conscious may distort, may censor. So he used to hide behind a screen. The patient would be lying down on the couch relaxing, and Freud would say, "Just start saying whatsoever comes to your mind. Don't edit it, don't correct it, don't try to make it look beautiful, sophisticated, logical, significant. Just let it be as it is, raw. Simply let it come out as it is."
The first few sessions are not significant. But slowly slowly the patient relaxes, starts free associating, and the unconscious unburdens itself.

Psychoanalysis does nothing else, it simply helps you to unburden the unconscious. It makes things conscious which have remained unconscious for long. And just in that very process things start changing. One or two years of psychoanalysis, and the person has changed enormously; he is totally a different person, more at ease, more at home. What has happened? Because the psychoanalyst has not done anything; no medicine has been given, no psychiatric treatment has been given.
In fact the real psychoanalyst does not even comment, because commentary may become a disturbance. He simply listens; he is just ears and ears and nothing else. He is a passive silent listener, so you can unburden yourself totally, without any interference.

The unconscious has its own language. It talks in metaphors, it talks in pictures. Its language is not conceptual, its language is pictorial. But its language is totally different from the language that you know.
Now, this is a way of the unconscious. Lionel is asking as if it is somebody else's question -- it is not.

I have heard: A friend came to see a black couple. The father was very proud of his only child, a baby girl of eighteen months. He was bragging about the baby so much that the friend became interested and wanted to see the baby. So the baby was called and the father started talking about her intelligence, genius, and this and that. And then the baby said, "Mother...." The father beamed and said to the friend, "See, she has already spoken half a word!"

Get it?...
... NOW you got it -- it takes a little time! Now, the baby is simply saying "Mother" but the father has his own ideas, he is interpreting in his own way.
Drop interpretations. At least with me, be utterly nude. Why can't you ask the question: "Osho, if I go back and drop sannyas, then...?" It would have been so beautiful, so sincere. But you have changed it.
You say: "What of those who take sannyas in Poona, only to drop it back in their home environment?"
They have never taken sannyas. Once you take sannyas, it cannot be dropped. It is not something that can be dropped. It is a milieu, an experience that goes so deep into you that it becomes your very heart. It permeates you.

Sannyas is not just the orange clothes and the mala; that is just symbolic. Sannyas is something totally different, far more deep-going. It is not in the clothes. Once you have taken sannyas it is impossible to drop it -- but the real crux is whether you have taken it. If you can drop it, that will simply show that you had never taken it in the first place. And if you have not taken it, you will not be benefited by it. Then naturally the mind will say, "What is the point? For three months you have been a sannyasin, and nothing has happened. Why not drop it?"

And nothing has happened because from the very beginning you were not in it. You were not a participant; you were being tricky, you were being diplomatic.

Please don't be diplomatic here. This is an intimate relationship; please don't bring any cleverness between me and you. With me, be simple, innocent, and then miracles are possible. You are entitled to miracles. But unless you allow them they cannot happen. They can happen only with your cooperation.

The third question:

Osho, Why do non-sannyasins have to sit behind the green line? It has been very difficult for me to see You, and this to someone who is only just learning about You is not helpful in feeling You. Actually I feel a little bit like a second-class citizen.

Elaine Santoz, the truth is you are a second-class citizen. I cannot help it, I cannot lie to you. Sannyasins are in a totally different relationship with me; they are privileged in every possible way. Non-sannyasins should feel grateful that at least they are allowed in, up to the green line.

If you want to become a first-class citizen, become a sannyasin. You cannot become a first-class citizen without paying for it. In life you can't get anything unless you pay for it. Even if you can get something without paying, it will not have any value for you. The value arises only when you pay for it -- the more you pay, the more valuable it becomes. To come close to me, you will have to do something.

And this arrangement -- sannyasins sitting close to me and non-sannyasins sitting a little further away -- has something else in it too. If non-sannyasins are in front of me, I cannot talk the way I am talking, because my talk is not something readymade, it is a response. If I see my people silently sitting, attentive, drinking in every single word, focused, meditative, I can say far higher things; far more complicated things can be explained to them.

But if non-sannyasins are sitting in front of me, I always have to begin from abc. Then the plane can never take off; then the plane has to function like a bus. You can use a plane like a bus. It can take off only when it gains speed; a certain situation is needed for it to gain speed.

I used to talk to millions of people in this country; then I had to stop. I was talking to thousands -- in a single meeting, fifty thousand people. I traveled around this country for fifteen years, from one corner to another corner. I simply became tired of the whole thing, because each day I would have to start from abc. It was always abc, abc, abc, and it became absolutely clear that I would never be able to reach xyz. I had to stop traveling.

Now I don't go even outside the gate of this ashram, because there I again meet people who live in the abc. I am no longer interested in them. If they are interested, then they will have to come, and they will have to pass through barriers, and slowly slowly they will have to become participants. They will have to become sannyasins.

I am not talking to students but only to disciples. Students are still allowed, but it will not be very long before they are stopped completely. So before it is too late, Santoz, cross the green line! Because I would like to talk only to my people, so that I can relate whatsoever I want to relate; so that I can depend and trust that whatsoever is said will be taken in good faith, in love; so that I know from the very beginning that everything can be revealed to them and nothing will be misunderstood.

Just the other day, I was reading a report in the INDIAN EXPRESS. Their journalist had come here for just two or three days. He writes in his report that thousands of people were sitting so silently that you could hear the birds chirping in the trees. They were so silent, it was as if there was nobody there.
And what is his conclusion? He thought it was all managed, that it was a performance. He thought it was a performance to impress the poor journalist from the INDIAN EXPRESS! He could not believe it, because he knows Indians, and he knows Indian meetings.

I also know them. Once I was talking on Krishna in a meeting, and people were sitting with their backs towards me, talking with each other, gossiping -- their backs towards me! That was the last day, the last straw on the camel. In the middle I left. The president of the meeting said, "Where are you going?" I said, "I am going forever! I am finished with these stupid people. I am talking about Krishna, they have invited me to talk to them, and nobody seems to listen."

That Indian journalist must have seen many many such meetings. So, seeing three thousand people sitting silently here, nobody stirring, nobody talking with each other, it was natural to conclude that it was just to impress him.

When I was leaving that day, I saw two persons sitting here who looked absolutely out of place. And when I bowed down to you, they did not respond. Now, if many such people are here around me, nonresponsive, I will not be able to pour out my heart; it will be impossible.

Hence, Elaine Santoz, that green line. If you want to cross it, the doors are not closed. But don't ask for anything without being really ready to pay for it. And as many, many more sannyasins will be coming, only those who are really dedicated and committed, only they will be able to sit close.
And I understand your problem. To sit close, to be near to me, has its own blessing. The contact goes deeper, the vibe permeates you more totally, because it is not only a matter of the questions that I am answering or the words that I am using. Basically it is my presence; you have to drink it and you have to digest it.

But I am sorry, I cannot do anything about it. Non-sannyasins are bound to remain second-class citizens here.

The last question:

Osho, Another discourse, another silly question. Why do You refer to Your sannyasins as “the chosen few” when any lost soul who can make it to Poona with a willingness to participate in some trendy gestalt-oriented therapy groups and do some meditating, can apparently take sannyas? Who ever gets refused sannyas and on what grounds? P.S. Bob Dylan says, “I never got into any of them guru trips. I never felt that lost!”

Dick Blackburn, nobody is ever refused, no Tom, Harry or Dick. That does not mean that all are accepted. Nobody is ever refused, that's true, but that does not mean that all are accepted. Only those are accepted who surrender. Only those are accepted who are utterly committed, who have fallen in love with me, who can trust, and whose trust is unconditional and absolute. They are accepted.

Sannyas is not denied to anybody, because sannyas is an opportunity. A few people surrender even before taking sannyas, a few surrender after taking sannyas, a few surrender after being sannyasins for months or for years. Hence sannyas is not denied; it creates a space, a context, for surrender.
But as to who is really received, who is really accepted, it is a totally different matter. It is not declared; it remains esoteric. Only I know. And, slowly slowly, the person who is accepted starts knowing it -- but very slowly. Sometimes it takes years for the person to understand that he has been accepted. It is never said; not even to the person is it said that he has been accepted. It has to be understood; that is the beauty of it. Only then is it significant.

But it starts happening. If I accept a person, slowly slowly his energy starts giving messages to him that he has been accepted. One day it becomes such an absolute certainty, so self-evident, that there is no need for any other declaration, validation, or any certificate.

Sannyas I give to all. But only those are accepted who REALLY take sannyas. That's why I say sannyasins are the chosen few. It is out of my compassion that I don't reject anybody. The most unworthy is also to be respected, loved, received, welcomed. And who knows? The unworthy may change. Man is unpredictable; the baser metal can any day become gold.

And about the P.S.: "Bob Dylan says, 'I never got into any of them guru trips. I never felt that lost!'"
To find a master is not for those who feel that they are lost. It is for those who start feeling that there is a way and that there is a ray, that they are not lost; that they can find somebody who will help them, who will make things more clear and transparent.

Enough for today.