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Question - Why does man continue to live the way he lives -- in misery, in agony, in suffering?

Osho - Man lives under a great hypnosis. Man lives under deep conditionings: the society has conditioned you, the state has conditioned you, the priest, the politician, the culture, the religion, the church -- all their investments are there in your deep sleep. They don't want you to be awake. Once humanity is awake, there can be no politician possible. Once humanity is awake, there can be no priest possible. Once humanity is awake, temples, churches, religions, will disappear from the earth. This whole exploitation is possible because man lives in sleep. The exploitation is possible because man is miserable -- only a miserable humanity can be exploited.

It is a vicious circle: only a miserable man can be exploited, and when you exploit him he becomes more miserable. When he is more miserable you can exploit him even more -- and so on and so forth. A happy man is a rebellious man. Happiness is tremendous rebellion. No society has yet been capable of allowing people to be happy -- it is dangerous, too dangerous. How can you send people to war if they are happy? How can you teach them foolish things like Nazism, communism, fascism, nationalism? If people are happy they will laugh at your foolishness, at all your ideologies -- they will take them as jokes, they won't take them seriously. They will laugh at the very idea that somebody can be a Christian, somebody can be a Hindu and somebody can be a Mohammedan, and that then they can fight for centuries and kill each other.

Osho on life

Gurdjieff used to love a parable. It is of tremendous significance. Meditate over the parable. There was a rich magician who had a great many sheep. He did not want to hire shepherds, nor did he want to erect a fence about the pasture where his sheep were grazing -- he was very miserly and very mean. The sheep consequently often wandered into the forest, fell into ravines, and so on; and above all, they ran away -- for they knew that the magician wanted their flesh and skins, and this they did not like.

At last the magician found a remedy. He hypnotized his sheep and suggested to them first of all that they were immortal, and that no harm was being done to them when they were skinned -- that, on the contrary, it would be very good for them and even pleasant. Secondly, he suggested that the magician was a good master who loved his flock so much that he was ready to do anything in the world for them. And in the third place, he suggested to them that if anything at all was going to happen to them, it was not going to happen just then, at any rate not that day, and therefore they had no need to think about it. Further, the magician suggested to his sheep that they were not sheep at all: to some of them he suggested that they were lions, to others that they were eagles, to others that they were men, and to others that they were magicians. And after this, all his cares and worries about the sheep came to an end. They never ran away again but quietly awaited the time when the magician would require their flesh and skins. This tale is a very good illustration of man's position.

You have been hypnotized to remain in misery. You have been taught, conditioned, to remain in misery. And the trick is very subtle. For example -- try to understand it -- first, everybody has been told that happiness exists in the future. This is absurd, this is nonsense. Happiness exists herenow. You need not achieve it, you bring it with yourself -- it is part of your innermost core. But every child has been taught -- suggestion and suggestion and suggestion -- that unless you have a big house and a double-car garage and so many gadgets and much fame and a certain amount of bank balance and success in the market, you will not be happy. As if happiness depends on some commodities! as if happiness depends on anything. Happiness does not depend on anything; every child is born happy.

These ambitions create misery. They never make you happy, they create misery. Once the mind becomes ambitious the seeds of misery are planted deeply in you. Now you will never be happy, because the future never comes, tomorrow never comes -- and your hope hangs in the tomorrow which never comes.

You may have a big house, but you will not be happy because there will always be bigger houses than your house, and that will create misery. You may have a beautiful woman, but there are thousands, many more beautiful women in the world, and that will not make you happy. You will have money, but even that won't make you happy, because more is always possible. This is the trick: "more" has been implanted in you like an electrode -- "Have MORE, then you will be happy." Now how can you have more? Whatsoever you have, you can always imagine more. You have ten thousand rupees, you can imagine twenty thousand. You have twenty thousand, you can imagine forty thousand. How are you going to stop that "more"? You cannot have more; whatsoever you have will always be less than the more -- and that will create misery.

You have been taught from the very beginning to compare. Comparison brings misery. Each individual is incomparable; nobody else is like you -- how can you compare? Comparison is relevant when there are two things alike -- you can compare one Ford car with another Ford car, they are alike. But how can you compare two men? Impossible. Each is so individual that all comparison is going to bring misery.

The moment you compare, you are creating hell around you; and from the very childhood you have been taught, every child is being told: "Be like that. Look at the neighbor's child, how intelligent -- and you are stupid. Look at somebody's daughter, how mature she looks -- and you are immature. Look at somebody else, how clean his living is -- and you are dirty." Now these comparisons make you feel miserable. You are yourself: there is nobody like you, there has never been anybody like you, there is going to be nobody like you ever. God never repeats.

You are unique. And remember, when I am saying "unique" I am not saying it in a comparative sense -- I am not saying you are more unique than others, I am simply saying that each is unique. Uniqueness is very ordinary -- everybody is unique. Once you have started comparison you are going to be neurotic -- sooner or later you will land up on some psychiatrist's couch. Flowers are not mad and not miserable, because they don't compare. Have you ever thought of a roseflower comparing with other roses? No comparison, no neurosis... alone, happy, unique, offered to God.

Comparison creates tension, anxiety. And these things have been taught to you: you have been taught you are a Christian, a Hindu, a Mohammedan -- now how can consciousness be confined to ideologies? Ideologies are just mind-products; consciousness is far beyond, far above. Ideologies are just fictions -- nothing to do with the truth. The truth is your consciousness -- but you pay more attention to the ideology, and you have forgotten the truth. You fight, you unnecessarily quarrel, you argue, you prove, you disprove. You have been taught that somebody is an Indian, somebody is a Chinese, somebody is a Japanese; political ideologies -- you are a communist, you are a fascist, this and that -- a thousand and one diseases have been implanted in you... and you want to be happy. You will have to drop all this.

And you can drop it, and you can drop it in a single stroke -- there is no need to drop it by and by. If you drop it by and by, you will never drop it -- because if you drop it by and by, meanwhile you will be carrying it, and you will be watering it, and you will be helping it.

Drop it in a single stroke of a sword: that stroke is what I call understanding. An intelligent person, seeing all this, immediately drops it. IMMEDIATELY, I say. I don't say that he thinks, "Tomorrow or the day after tomorrow I will drop it" -- otherwise he has moved into misery again. Tomorrow? -- misery has entered. Or he says, "How can I drop it right now? Preparation has to be made: I will go to a yoga school and do yoga ASANAS and stand on my head -- then I will drop it." You are not going to drop it then. If you cannot drop it while your head is in the right place, you are not going to drop it when the head will be in the wrong place!

Standing on the head, you will become more stupid. Standing on the head is dangerous: more blood flows towards your brain. And the brain tissues are very subtle -- when too much blood flows towards the brain, those subtle tissues are broken. You will never find a yogi who is also intelligent -- it is impossible. He will have good health -- that's one thing -- but he will not be intelligent. You will find all sorts of stupidities in his being. He will be healthy like an animal. Animals are more healthy, certainly, and one of the reasons why they have grown intelligence is that their head is still flooded too much with blood -- it is parallel to the earth. Man has evolved consciousness because he stood on two feet, and the head went up, and the head went against gravitation. Now because of gravitation the head cannot get too much blood, so subtle tissues have grown in the head: those subtle tissues are your basic mechanism for intelligence.

So if you think that tomorrow you will do something, prepare yourself, and then you will drop, then you have not understood. It is as if a snake crosses your path and you say, "First I will prepare, then I will jump out of the way." The snake is not as foolish as you... and I don't think you will do it -- the moment you see the snake, you will jump. The action is instant, immediate; you will jump out of the way. That's what I mean -- a single stroke of the sword. If you understand me, then you will simply drop your being Hindu, Mohammedan, Christian, English, American, Indian -- you will simply drop comparison. I say "simply" -- you will not prepare for it; you will simply drop the idea of more, because you will see into it. It is bringing misery. You will stop comparing.
When comparison has stopped, the "more" has been dropped, and foolish ideologies have been thrown away, suddenly you sill see a delight arising in your being, a celebration -- it was waiting. The hypnosis has been broken.

The difficulty is not that you cannot drop it right now -- you can. But you don't want to, because you have become too familiar with it. You talk -- you SAY that you would like to be happy, but you are afraid to be happy. In fact you don't dare to be happy. You have lived with this hypnosis for so long, you have become too familiar with it: if you move away from it, you will be moving into the unknown, into the strange -- that creates a trembling. You have become accustomed to it. Now it does not hurt you really; you have become dull and dead. You can carry it. Man has a tremendous capacity to become adjusted to anything -- to any climate, to any situation, to any illness, to any misery; man has infinite capacity for adjustment. You have become adjusted to it. You are not happy -- that is certain -- but you are not miserable either. The misery has become your companion.
I have heard...

Into a cross-maker's shop one day came a man who wearily took down his cross from his shoulder and set it on e floor.
"And what can I do for you?" the cross-maker asked him.
"I want to exchange my burden," said the man. "This one is too heavy for me to carry. I stagger under the load."
"Very well," replied the cross-maker. "Take your pick of all these crosses and see which suits you best."
So the man gladly set about trying them on. The first was very light for a moment or two, but as he walked about, testing it, he concluded that it wouldn't do, for soon it became heavier than his old one. so he tried another, and another, and another, until at last he found one lighter than all the rest. "I can bear this one easily," he told the cross-maker. "May I have it?"
"Very well," the cross-maker answered. "But that is the one you brought in with you."

Osho on the way man lives

People become accustomed.... If you have been carrying a certain misery load, a certain cross of anguish, anxiety, you have become accustomed to it -- it is almost part of your being. Now anything new will be more disturbing: with the new, you will have to earn new ways of being. And happiness? -- you have forgotten the very language of it. You don't even remember what happiness means; you don't remember that you ever experienced it. It seems to be just a dream -- very fragile, not solid enough to catch hold of; you cannot hold it in your hand and see it.

What do you mean by happiness? When was the last time you were happy? Can you remember any moment in your life when you were really happy -- REALLY really happy? And you will be surprised -- the whole life looks like a desert. You have been hoping... but you have not experienced happiness. Now this whole desert-like life is what you mean when you say, "I am." This is your ego -- all this pus, all this canceric state, all this disease and illness, all this neurosis -- this is what you call "I am." This is your ego.
And if I say to you, "Drop the ego," you say, "How can I drop the ego? Why should I surrender? Why should I surrender to anybody?" This "I" is nothing but your past. Look deep into it, analyze it a little -- you will not find anything in it but just miseries and miseries and miseries... hurts insults, irritations, nightmares.... But you fight for it. You are not ready to drop it, you are really clinging to it.

Surrender simply means an understanding: Enough of this "I" -- now I drop it. The moment you drop "I", you have dropped the whole hypnosis that the society has forced you to go through. The moment you drop the ego, you have dropped the state, the religion, the church, the society, the parents, the school, the university, the civilization, the culture: you have dropped all conditioning. And then suddenly you will see an upsurge of tremendous bliss arising in you. It was there, waiting -- just remove the weight, and the spring can flow again.

Happy you were born -- each child is born in happiness. Each child is born for happiness -- this whole life is a great celebration. But there are people who would not allow you to be happy. Have you observed it? Whenever you start feeling a little happiness you also feel, side by side, a little guilt arising -- as if you are doing something wrong. If you are unhappy, there is no guilt; if you are happy, there is guilt. You must be doing something wrong -- you are feeling happy?

People come to me, and they say that doing meditations, dancing, singing, sometimes happiness comes like a breeze... but then guilt. It feels as if the whole world is so miserable..."and I am feeling happy? Everybody is so miserable, in this ocean of misery, and I am feeling happy? -- no, this is not good. How can I be happy?" People even ask ME: they ask me "How can you be happy when the whole world is miserable?" As if, if I am also miserable, the whole world will be less miserable. It will be MORE -- one plus! At least one person is happy -- that much burden is removed from the world.

You feel very very afraid to laugh -- as if you are going to commit a sin. When you are miserable, you feel very very at ease -- no problem. The whole world is miserable; you are not going against anybody, you are just like everybody else. To dance and to sing and to celebrate, you become individual; you are no more like everybody else. And people will also feel offended if you are happy. You will feel guilty, people will feel offended. Nobody forgives a man who is happy: How can you DARE to be happy!

People only allow mad people to be happy. They say: Okay -- he is mad. If a man laughs loudly and dances in the street, they say he is mad. If you are happy they can forgive you only if you allow them to call you mad. If they can label you as mad then nobody is worried; then they can smile at you -- they know that you are mad. Otherwise, how can a man be happy? -- he must have gone mad.

People have forgotten the very language... but you can regain it, because it is your natural thing. It is nothing to be learnt; you have just to unlearn what the society has put on you. You have to regain your childhood, you have to be reborn. That's what Jesus said to Nicodemus: You will have to be reborn. You have to die as you are, and you have to be reborn. You have to wash yourself clean of society.

Once the society is dropped, God starts singing a song in you. He is still singing in the birds, because they don't have a society and they don't have to go to schools and they don't have to be cultured and conditioned. He is still singing in the trees, because the trees have not yet created priests and politicians. He is still singing in the waves of the ocean.... Except in man, God is happy everywhere. Something has gone wrong with man.

Gurdjieff used to say -- just a fictitious idea -- that when God created man, man was very happy -- so happy that God became afraid. And man was so happy that he wouldn't even listen to God -- who bothers? And man was so happy, and he was so much involved in his happiness, that he would not even worship God -- he would not pray. Then God had to think about it -- this is too much! No parent allows children to go so far. Mm? -- you have to be respectful, obedient. That's the Christian story also -- that Adam disobeyed: that is the first sin.

Gurdjieff used to say that then God became very much afraid, and he implanted a subtle mechanism at the source of the spine: what Hindus call KUNDALINI, he used to laughingly call "kundabuffer." God placed a small mechanism just under everybody's spine; a small mechanism -- kundabuffer. It does not allow your happiness to reach to your consciousness, it is a buffer.

And maybe he is right -- the story is fictitious, but he is right; there is a certain kundabuffer. God has not implanted it, but society has implanted it. In fact, your gods are creations of the society. All your gods are nothing but creations of the cunning priests -- they have put in a kundabuffer. Maybe that's why all the religions are so much against sex, because being against sex is the way to create the kundabuffer.

Sex energy is just at the source of the spine. If a child is taught from the very beginning to be against sex.... Sex is sin, and sex has to be destroyed, or at least controlled -- never allowed to go too far, never allowed to be spontaneous; has to be put under many controls, laws, regulations. These laws, regulations, suppressions, they become the buffer: the kundabuffer is created. Then sex energy remains repressed at the source of the spine and does not rise in the spine.

That's what they say in the East: Once the sex energy rises in the spine, you start becoming very very happy. When the sex energy reaches to the seventh -- SAHASRAR -- you flower into a lotus bloom. Your life then is a deep ecstasy. This repressed sexual energy is your repressed happiness. By repressing sexual energy, happiness has been repressed. By repressing sexual energy, you have been cut from your roots.

In Japan they have a four-hundred-year-old tree, just six inches high. The tree was planted in a saucer four hundred years ago, and the man who planted it continued to cut its roots. The roots were never allowed to grow, and the saucer has very little soil in it -- just a little bit. For four hundred years, the tree has remained just six inches in height... if it had been allowed, it would have touched the clouds.

That has happened to man -- your roots are being cut. You are not allowed to touch the clouds, you are not allowed to dance, not allowed to sing. You are allowed a little bit -- but that is controlled so much that it is almost meaningless.
So many laws and regulations are enforced that by the time something is allowed, it is almost insignificant -- just a trickle; it is not a gushing flood. And you can be happy only when your energy gushes in a flood -- when you are overwhelmed, when you are lost into it, when the energy is so much that you don't know any boundaries. William Blake has said: Energy is delight. And energy has been repressed -- society has created the kundabuffer.

The buffer has to be broken. That's what I am doing here -- trying to break the buffer. That's why people are so much against me. i am trying to help them to be happy, but they protect their misery -- they don't want to be happy. They want to be Hindus, they want to be Mohammedans, they want to be Christians -- they don't want to be happy. They want to belong to this organization or that -- they don't want to belong to God. And they go on doing something that is basically against themselves. Not only others are cutting your roots; you go on pruning your own roots. You have been taught to do it -- your hands are almost doing it unconsciously.

Man exists in deep slumber. Man is hypnotized. That's why you go on living the way you live -- in misery, in unhappiness, in agony. The same energy can become ecstasy -- release it! Be yourself and forget what others have been trying to make of you. Declare your freedom! And be rebellious. I am not saying go and fight with society, because that is foolish -- you will be again wasting your energy.

And this is the difference that I make between a rebellious person and a revolutionary: the revolutionary is a reactionary -- he reacts against the society, he starts fighting the society. First he was miserable because he was burdened by the society, now he becomes miserable because he has to fight the society. First he was following the society, now he fights the society -- but he remains obsessed with the society. A revolutionary is not a really rebellious person.

Who is a rebellious person? A rebellious person is one who has understood the whole nonsense of the society, and simply slips out of it. He does not fight with it; on the surface he even continues to pretend that he belongs with you. He is a clever person -- Gurdjieff used to call him "the sly person." He is clever enough -- he is neither orthodox nor revolutionary, he is just rebellious. But his rebellion is so intelligent that he knows there is no point -- if the society says "Walk on the left" he walks on the left, because there is no point in fighting in this -- it is meaningless.

On the surface he goes on following the society; deep down he has slipped out of it, deep down he starts living his own life. He does not go into the marketplace to exhibit, because if you exhibit your happiness in the marketplace they are going to kill you; they will crucify you. They did the same to Jesus, they did the same to Socrates, to Mansoor -- they are not going to leave you alone.

There is no need. When you are sitting with miserable people, keep a miserable face -- even more miserable than they have -- because it is just a game you are playing: you are not miserable, you can act it better then them -- they are REALLY miserable. Keep a longer face than them. When alone, have a good laugh. Don't start fighting with the society otherwise you will be in trouble, and happiness will again be far away -- as far away as before. First you were following the society and could not be happy. Now you fight the society, so the society throws you in a jail or in chains, or the society tries to crush you -- and again you are unhappy.

A rebellious person is a very very clever person. He slips out in such silent ways that he does not create any ripple on the surface... and he starts living his private life in his own way. That's what I teach you: I don't teach you to be revolutionaries, I teach you to be rebellious. A religious person is a rebellious person.

Source - Osho Book "The Divine Melody"

Related Osho Discourses:
Osho Quotes on Life
Osho Story - Identification is Misery
Osho - A man of real enjoyment is herenow
Osho, I feel Life is very boring. What should I Do?
Osho- Unless a man is creative, he cannot find much joy in life
Osho - Is it important to have some kind of attitude towards Life?
Osho - I have tried my whole Life to live a Religious Life, but then why am I still Miserable

Osho on Misery - What is this attachment to misery? And why is it so difficult to be happy?

Osho Discourses on: Empathy, Frustration, Greed, Hate, Imitation, Innocence, Patience, Pessimist, Prayer, Receptivity, Repentance, Surrender, Terrorism, Trust, Truth, Wisdom

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