Chapter 6

Question 1



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The first question

Question 1



Yoga Prem,

THE DIFFERENCE is immense -- it is absolutely unbridgeable. Two things will have to be understood: one is personality and the second is individuality.

We ordinarily don't have individuality at all. That's what Gurdjieff means when he says it is very rare to find a person who has a soul. He is the first enlightened Master who has said it so clearly. Otherwise, Mahavira, Buddha, Krishna, Christ, they have all given the impression at least that everybody has a soul. Everybody has a self but not a soul, and the self is a barrier not a bridge to the soul.

Personality is your circumference, not your center. The word "personality" comes from a Latin root persona. In Greek theater the actors used to wear masks; they would speak through the mask. Sona means sound, persona means sound coming through the mask. You cannot see the real person, you cannot see his original face. You only see a facade, something pseudo, something made-up, invented. The word "personality" comes from persona.

When the child is born we start giving him personality  -- by educating him, by giving him a certain religious attitude, by imparting some philosophy, some political ideology. Slowly slowly, brick by brick, we create a structure around him in which he becomes imprisoned, so much so that he starts feeling identified with the edifice created by others around him. He does not feel imprisoned.

To feel imprisoned is a great insight, because from that moment one starts making efforts to be free. Whatsoever you are, you are a creation of others. You have been pushed and pulled from all directions, you have been given a certain shape. It is not your originality; it is something imposed, painted. But you have known it from your very beginning. You have known it for so long that you don't remember that you can be anybody else. And you are somebody else -- you are not this personality.

This confusion prevails all over the world. Just a few days ago, Sarjano wrote to me saying, "Osho, it seems I have a strong individuality and I cannot surrender to the commune. I cannot possibly become part of the commune. I want to cook in my own way." Now he thinks he has a strong individuality; in fact, he has no individuality at all -- not yet.

When you come to me you come only with a personality, a persona. And my work is an absolutely thankless job because I have to destroy your personality; that is the only way to help you to discover your individuality. The individuality is your original face: it is the way God wanted you to be, it is the way you were made by him. Your individuality has the signature of God on it, but your personality is a social phenomenon. Hence there are Christian personalities, Hindu personalities, Mohammedan personalities, and so on and so forth.

Individuality is simply individuality. It is neither Christian nor Hindu nor Mohammedan, it is neither Catholic nor communist, it is neither Eastern nor Western. In fact, individuality is neither male nor female. It is the personality that has all these divisions, categories, aspects.

Sarjano wrote, "I feel I have a strong individuality." Individuality is never strong; it is very fragile, as fragile as a roseflower. Of course, even in its fragility the roseflower has a certain strength. It can dance in the wind, in the rain, unafraid. It is fearless, but it is not strong in the sense steel is strong.

Buddha is not as strong as Joseph Stalin is. The very name "Stalin" comes from "steel." It was not his real name; it was given because he was a man of steel. Buddha is not a man of steel; he is made out of very fragile elements: the rainbow, the lotus, the fragrance of flowers. He is very feminine -- feminine not in the sense of being female but in the sense of being very vulnerable, receptive, very available to existence.

The strong person is one who is stubborn.

Yoga Prem is asking: What is the difference between being an individual and just being stubborn?

Personality is always stubborn, individuality never. Personality has to be stubborn, because it is false. If it is not stubborn it cannot exist at all. It has to be maintained continuously -- you have to fight for it. The personality consists of nothing but ego, self, greed, anger, violence, because deep down you are aware of the trembling, of the fear of death. Deep down you know your inferiority. The personality brags about its superiority.

Remember always, whatsoever the personality brags about is exactly the opposite of your reality. If you are feeling unintelligent inside, your personality will project intelligence. If you are feeling unloving inside, your personality will create a very sweet, smiling, loving quality. It is not just to deceive others; it is really, basically, to deceive oneself. You want to forget your unlovingness. If you are feeling empty inside, your personality will start gathering a thousand and one possessions.

Alexander the Great, Napoleon, Adolf Hitler -- these people have lived only as personalities, very stubborn. They have to be stubborn because they know that if they are not stubborn, if they are not continuously fighting, the personality will disappear -- because it is a false phenomenon. It is not a reality; it is manufactured by the mind, hence the mind has to go on finding mote props for it

But individuality is egoless, selfless, a state of no-mind. It has no ambitions, no desires, because it is immensely fulfilled just being itself. It need not fight for its existence; it is existential. It cannot be destroyed; it is indestructible, but not strong -- very fragile, very feminine, never aggressive, always receptive. It never brags about itself -- there is no need because there is no inferiority complex in it. Not that it feels superior! Those are two aspects of the same coin: the inferior and the superior.

The real person, the authentic being, the individual, is neither inferior nor superior; he is simply himself. He never compares himself with others -- the idea of comparison does not arise at all; he knows everybody has unique individualities.

The word "individuality" is also significant; it means indivisible, that which cannot be divided. Individuality is organic. Personality is a patchwork -- something from here, something from there. You go on collecting, and hence you are always afraid it can be taken back.

Somebody says to you, "You are so beautiful!" Now you will be dependent on the person, because he can withdraw his statement any moment. Not only can he withdraw it, he can say, "I have never seen such an ugly person as you!" Then what? You have to cling to his statement, and to cling to his statement you have to compromise. You have to go on persuading him, buttressing him, so that he goes on continuing saying that you are beautiful.

Dale Carnegie in one of his famous books suggests to couples, particularly husbands, that they should go on saying to their wives, whenever there is an opportunity, "I love you. You are the most precious thing in my life. I cannot believe there can be any person more beautiful than you." Whether you feel it or not, that is not the point, he says; the point is repetition.

And the wife has to do the same: "You are the greatest man in the world. There is nobody who even comes close to you. You are divine. You are almost a god to me. I will worship you forever and forever, in this life and afterwards too." Whether you feel it or not, that is not the point. You may feel, "I have never seen such a man, so stupid, so ugly, so cunning, so mean! " Go on feeling that, but never say it because people live on words -- personalities live on words.

I asked a woman . . . I knew her husband -- he was always in the library. I asked the woman, "Is your husband a bookworm?"

She said, "No, he is just an ordinary worm!"

But these things have not to be told to the husband!

Dale Carnegie has become the prophet of the American way of life. In America, after the Bible, Dale Carnegie's book has been the biggest seller: How to Win Friends and Influence People. And this is the secret -- simple: just go on feeding their egos and you can win people; they will be your friends. You can persuade them even to die for you, because all that they need is support for their personalities, and it has to come from all sources. The priest has to support them, the educational system has to support them, the social system has to support them. And if you cannot find ordinary ways -- for example, not everybody can hope to become the prime minister or the president -- then you start creating your own small clubs: the Rotary Club, the Lions Club. Now, go to a Lions Club and see how many sheep are gathered there pretending to be lions!

Once I went to a Lions Club meeting in Poona -- fifteen years must have passed since then -- and thinking that they were lions, I shouted and roared. I was staying at Sohan's house. When we came back she said, "You were the only lion there, and they were all sheep!" -- because they became so afraid. They were so shocked, because I started destroying all their assumptions.

Now there are Rotary Clubs all over the world. The word "rotary" is because people become president by rotation. So everybody has a chance; you just have to wait for your chance. Sooner or later . . . first you will become the Vice-President, then the President and then the Governor, and so on and so forth. They have a very cunning strategy to fulfill everybody's ego. And then there are committees and chairmen of the committees . . . No work is done at all!

I have been to Rotary Clubs all over the country, and they ha e a placard on the president's table: "We serve." I have never seen them serving anybody; they must be serving each other. And they do serve each other -- they serve each other's personality. It is a tacit assumption that "I will help your ego, you help my ego."

Then there are churches and religions . . . but have you seen the phenomenon? No religion has remained undivided. Why? What happened?

The day Buddha died, Buddhists were divided into thirty-six sects. Why? These people were one when Buddha was alive, and just after Buddha died they started quarreling, as if they were just waiting for Buddha's death. There must have been many egoists around who wanted to be the chief, but how to be the chief when the Buddha is alive? So they must have waited for their opportunity.

The moment Buddha died, immediately . . . the body was burning on the funeral pyre, and they started playing their political game: "Who is going to be the successor?" Now there were thirty-six pretenders so Buddhism was divided into thirty-six sects.

Christianity could not remain one. Since Christ there have been many sects, many sub-sects, and the greatest division was created by Luther. Luther was one of the most egoistic persons ever. He had nothing to do with Christ, he had nothing to do with Christianity, but he was in a constant fight with the Pope. The Pope was just as egoistic, and Luther refused to submit to the Pope's ego. He created the Protestant section of Christians.

The same has happened to Jainism, to Islam, and it has happened more to Hinduism. Hindus have a very quarreling spirit, very quarrelsome. I don't think any country has such a quarreling spirit. The reason is that Hindus don't fight physically so their whole fight becomes intellectual; it has to find some way. Now Hindus have so many sects, sub-sects and sub-sub-sects that it is almost too difficult to know how many Hindu religions there are. There are so many, almost unbelievable. And this is not only so about religion; it is so about everything that Hindus have done.

India has never been a nation because the Hindu mind is continuously quarreling and fighting. In Buddha's time there were two thousand Indias, not one India, because two thousand kingdoms existed -- just small kingdoms, with each kingdom trying to be the suprememost. And the disease has gone so deep into the Hindu blood that in every sphere, even in politics, it is the same. Now there are so many Congress Parties... not only are there so many Congress Parties -- that can be understood -- there are so many Communist Parties in India that you will not believe it. Nowhere in the world are there so many Communist Parties. Even the Communist Party -- which is an absolutely non-Indian phenomenon, which is anti-religious, atheistic -- even the Communist Party is not one in India. There are many Communist Parties quarreling, continuously quarreling. The old Hindu spirit cannot leave you so easily. You may become a communist, but basically you Will go on doing your old tricks.

But the whole thing happens because of personality: "My ego has to be supreme."

In India there are so many jagatgurus. Jagatguru means World Teacher. Now without asking the world, how can you be the World Teacher? And there are so many World Teachers! There can be only one World Teacher; one is enough because there is only one world. I came across so many World Teachers while traveling that I was surprised: in one world so many World Teachers?

In one village they brought a man and they said, He is a world teacher, jagatguru. "

I asked him, "How many followers have you got?"

He looked a little embarrassed. The man who had brought him said, "His philosophy is so abstruse, so difficult to understand, that I am his only disciple."

I said, "Don't feel embarrassed. You do one thing. Jagatguru means the World Teacher; jagat means the world. guru means the teacher. So you change your name: simply make your name Jagat, the world. And he is your gum -- Jagatguru, the World Teacher -- so the problem is solved! Then you need not feel embarrassed -- he is the guru of Jagat!"

Personality is always dependent on others. Because it is dependent on others it is a prisoner, and because it is dependent on others it has to be stubborn. Otherwise others will make you an absolute slave; they will reduce you to the status of a thing. You have to be stubborn, you have to fight, you have to struggle for your survival.

Yoga Prem, individuality is never stubborn. Individuality is very liquid, very flowing -- just like a river it goes on moving towards the ocean. It has no fixed route, it has no a priori ideas as to what direction to go in, it has no plans. It adjusts to situations; it is very adjusting.

But the personality is not so adjusting; it has to be on guard. It is not liquid, it is very solid. It is more like ice than like water. But the personality is a false phenomenon. It cannot give you any joy, it cannot make your life a festival, it cannot give you the sense of the divine. It is a human phenomenon, a human structure. It will keep you empty, meaningless; it will keep you miserable.

Individuality makes your life significant. It makes your life a beautiful song, but the song is no more yours, the song is God's. Individuality is divine. You are simply a hollow bamboo: you become a flute on the lips of God or on the lips of the whole existence. Then whatsoever the whole wants, you allow it; you remain in a let-go.

Sarjano is absolutely wrong if he thinks that he has individuality; he just has a very strong ego. And it happens when people come to me, if I see that they have strong egos, the first thing that I do is to start puffing up their egos, pumping up their egos, making them bigger and bigger like big balloons so that they can see, others can see . . . And that's what I was doing with Sarjano.

He became very happy. He misunderstood the whole thing -- he misunderstood the device. He became very happy; he thought, "This is the place for me!" He started thinking he had found the right man. He started telling people, "Jesus is nothing compared to Osho. Jesus is just a pygmy!" Because I was pumping up his ego and making his balloon bigger and bigger, of course he started paying me in the same coin. He thought, "These things are going to help."

Just old, stupid mind games. But I go on making the balloon bigger and bigger, up to a certain point -- when I see now the balloon is so thin that it needs just a pinprick and it will burst.

Whenever Devaraj comes to take my blood he always says, "Now comes the prick," and I start laughing inside. I say, "That's my whole work!" He is telling me, "Now comes the prick," and that's what I go on doing, day in, day out.

So when I told Sarjano, "Now comes the prick," he started packing his luggage. Now he is trying to go to Italy. Go anywhere, the prick is bound to come. My prick is long enough! It can reach to Italy -- you cannot escape!


Next: Chapter 6: Question 2


Energy Enhancement                Enlightened Texts               Christianity                Theologia Mystica



Chapter 6






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