Question - What's the difference
between a Madman and a Devotee?
Osho - Not much. And yet much. Both are mad but their madness has a totally different quality to it; the center of madness is different. The madman is mad from the head; the devotee is mad from the heart. The madman is mad because of a failure. His logic failed He could not go on with the head anymore, any longer. There comes a point for the logical mind where breakdown is a must, because logic goes well up to a certain limit then suddenly it is no longer real, then it is no longer true to reality.
Life is illogical. It is wild. In life, contradictions are not contradictions but complementaries. Life does not believe in the division of either/or, life believes in both. The day becomes night, the night becomes day. They melt and merge. Boundaries are not clear. Everything is overlapping everything else: you are overlapping into your beloved, your beloved is overlapping into you. Your child is still a part of you and yet he is independent. Boundaries are blurred. Logic makes clear-cut boundaries. For clarity it dissects life into two, into a duality. Then clarity is achieved but aliveness is lost. At the cost Of aliveness, logic achieves clarity.
So if you are a mediocre mind, you may never go mad. That means you are just lukewarmly logical, and much that is illogical goes on existing in you side by side. But if you are really logical, then the ultimate result can be only madness. The more logical you are the more you will be intolerant of anything illogical. And life is illogical. So you will become by and by intolerant of life itself; you will become more and more closed. You will deny life, you will not deny logic. Then finally you break down -- this is the failure of logic.
Almost all the great philosophers who are logical, go mad. If they don't go mad, they are not great philosophers. Nietzsche went mad; Bertrand Russell never went mad He is not such a great philosopher, he is in a way mediocre. He goes on living with his commonsense -- he is a commonsensical philosopher, he does not move to the very extreme. Nietzsche moved to the very extreme and, of course, then There is the abyss. Madness is the failure of the head and in life there are millions of situations where suddenly the head is irrelevant.
There are a thousand and one situations where life comes in its total illogicalness. Suddenly your logical mind stops -- it cannot function. If you watch life you will find you act illogically every day; and if you insist too much on logic then by and by you will get paralyzed, by and by you will be thrown away from life, by and by you will feel a certain deadness settling in you.
One day or other this situation has to explode -- the division of either/or breaks down. Division as such is false. Nothing is divided in life. Only in your head is there division; only in your head are there clear-cut boundaries. It is as if you have made a small clearing in a forest -- clean, with a boundary wall, with a lawn, with a few rosebushes, and everything perfectly i., order. But beyond the boundary the forest is there -- waiting. If you don't care about your garden for a few days, the forest will enter in. If you leave your garden untended, after a while the garden will disappear -- and the forest will be there. Logic is man-made, like an English garden -- not even like a Zen Japanese garden -- clean-cut.
Every day there is a difficulty.... Mukta looks after my garden. She is my gardener. And she goes on cutting. I go on telling her, 'Don't cut! Let it be like a forest!' But what can she do? She hides from me that she is cutting, and planning and managing because she cannot allow the garden to become a forest. It should be in boundaries.
The logical mind is like a small garden, man-made, and life is wild
forest. Sooner or later you will come against life and then your mind
will boggle, will fall down flat. Stretch your mind to the very extreme
of logic and you will go mad.
The logical mind goes on weaving and spinning its own theories, its own ideas, and tries to make the reality fit accordingly. The reality should follow your idea -- that is what a logical mind is. The effort is that the reality should be a shadow to your ideology, but it is not possible. You are trying the impossible. It is implausible. It cannot happen. Ideology has to follow reality, and when the situation comes where you have to follow reality, the whole structure of your mind staggers, the whole structure of your mind simply drops down -- it proves to be a house of playing-cards. A small wind of reality and the palace disappears. That is madness.
What is the madness of a devotee? The center of the devotee's madness is his heart; the center of ordinary madness is the head. The ordinary madness happens from the failure of the head and the devotee's madness happens from the success of his heart When logic fails -- ordinary madness; when love succeeds -- extraordinary madness; the madness of a devotee.
Love is illogical. Love is irrational. Love is life. Love comprehends all contradictions in it. Love is even capable of comprehending its own opposite -- hate. Have you not observed it? You go on hating the same person you love. But love is bigger. It is so big that even hate can be allowed to have its play. In fact, if you really love, hate is not a distraction; on the contrary, it gives color, spice. It makes the whole affair more colorful -- like a rainbow. Even hate is not the opposite for a loving heart. He can hate and continue loving. Love is so great that even hate can be allowed to have its own say. Lovers become intimate enemies. They go on fighting. In fact, if you ask psychoanalysts, psychiatrists and psychologists, they will say that when a couple stops fighting, love has also stopped. When a couple no longer bother even to fight, have become indifferent to each other, then love has stopped. If you are still fighting with your wife or your husband, your boyfriend or girlfriend, that simply shows that life is still running in it, it is still a live wire, still hot. When love is no longer there and everything is dead, then there is no fight. Of course! For what to fight? It is meaningless. One settles into a sort of coldness; one settles into a sort of indifference.
Love is like wild life -- hence Jesus' saying that God is love. What does he mean? He means that if you love you will know many things which are qualities of God that he comprehends opposites, that even the Devil is allowed to have his say, that there is no problem with the opposite, that the enemy is also a friend and deep down related and connected, that death is not against life, but that death is part of life and life is part of death.
The whole is bigger than all the opposites, and it is not just a total of the opposites -- it is more than the total. This is the higher mathematics of the heart. Of course a man of love will look mad. He will look mad to you because you function from the head and he functions from the heart; the languages are totally different.
For example, Jesus was crucified. The enemies were waiting for him to curse them, and they were a little afraid; the friends were waiting for him to do some miracle, that all the enemies would fall dead. And what did he do? He did an almost mad thing. He prayed to God to forgive these people because they didn't know what they were doing. This is the madness of love. It is unexpected that when you are being killed you pray that these people should be forgiven because they don't know what they are doing. They are completely unconscious. Sleepwalkers. Whatsoever they are doing is not their responsibility because how can you throw responsibility on somebody who is asleep? They are unconscious -- forgive them. This is the miracle that happened that day but nobody could see that miracle; it was sheer madness.
Love's language is so foreign to the head. Head and heart are the farthest poles of reality. There is no greater distance between any other two points as there is between the head and the heart, reason and love, logic and life. If a person is mad because of his love, his madness is not a disease. In fact, he is the only healthy person, he is the only whole person, he is the only holy person -- because through his heart he has again become bridged with life.
Now he is no longer fighting; there is no more conflict. He is surrendered, he is in a let-go. He trusts life, he has faith, and he knows that nothing wrong is going to happen. He's not afraid. Even in death he will go laughing and singing, ecstatic, because even in death God is waiting for him. Death also becomes a door. Of course to the logical mind this man looks mad and he is mad, in a sense, because whatsoever he is doing is beyond the comprehension of reason. But to me, he is not mad. Ask Jesus -- to him he is not mad. Ask Buddha -- to him he is not mad. In fact, he's the only sane person, because now he no longer thinks, he lives; now he is no longer divided, but total; now there is no duality in him -- he is a unity. That is the meaning of the word 'yoga' -- that which unites. That is the meaning of the word 'religion' also -- that which makes you one, that which puts you again together -- 'religere'. You are no longer split.
Otherwise, ordinarily, you are not one person, you are many persons. You are a crowd. You don't know what your left hand is doing and what your right hand is planning to do. In the morning you don't know what you are going to do in the evening. You say one thing but you wanted to say something else, and you will go on saying something else still. You are not a unity. You are a crowd. There are many persons inside you revolving in a wheel and each becomes, for a time being, the king. And in that moment, the king asserts things which he cannot fulfill because by the time the moment to fulfill comes, he will no longer be a king.
You fall in love with a woman and you say, 'I will love you forever and forever.' Wait! What are you saying? Now, at this moment, a certain part of your personality is on the throne and that part says, 'I will love you forever and forever.' But just half an hour later you may repent. And just a few days later, you will completely forget what you had said.
The woman is not going to forget it. She will remember. She will remind you again and again about what you have said -- that you would love her forever and forever, and what has happened to your love? You will feel guilty and you will feel impotent and helpless because you cannot do anything. Now you know you should not have talked about the future, but at that moment you could not resist yourself; at that moment it looked as if you would be loving her forever and forever; at that moment it was a truth but the part of the mind that asserted it is no longer the emperor. Now there are other minds. Another part is sitting on the throne and he loves another woman, he chooses another woman. Whatsoever you promise, you are not going to fulfill it.
A man of understanding never promises because he knows his helplessness. He will say, 'l would like to love you forever and forever but who knows? I may not be the same the next day.' He will feel humble; he will not feel confident. Only fools feel confident. People of understanding hesitate because they know there is a crowd inside them -- they are not one.
That's why it is said in all the old scriptures that if a good thought comes to you, do it immediately. because the next moment you may not like to do it at all. And if a bad thought comes to you, postpone it a little. If anything good arises in you, don't miss the moment. Do it! If you feel it is good you can do it again tomorrow but do it right now, don't postpone. But the ordinary mind goes on doing just the opposite: whatsoever good arises in you, you postpone it for tomorrow, and whatsoever bad arises in you, you do it immediately. If you are angry, you will be angry right now, you cannot postpone it. But if you are feeling compassion, you will say, 'What is the hurry? Tomorrow.' That tomorrow never comes. Tomorrow is non-existential.
Ordinarily, a man is a crowd; in fact, we should not use 'the mind' in singular. We should not say that you have a mind, that is wrong. Only rare persons have a mind. You have minds. You are poly-psychic. The heart -- this is the beautiful thing -- the heart is always one. It does not know the duality; it is not a crowd. It is a unity. The closer you come to the heart, the one arises and the many disappear, far away. The heart needs no promise; even without promising, it is going to fulfill.
The mind goes on making promises but it never fulfills them. In fact, it promises just to create an illusion because it knows it is not going to fulfill anything. So at least create an illusion by promising -- 'I will love you forever and ever.' The heart will never say that but it will do it. And when you can do it, what is the point of saying it? There is no need. The man of love is mad, mad to the logical mind -- but he is not ill.
In the Western madhouses, there are many people who are not mad. If they had been in the Eastern countries they may even have been worshipped. In the West the clarity does not yet exist that a man can be mad head-oriented or heart-oriented. A heart-oriented madman is not a madman he is a God's man; or, he is mad in such a different way that he needs to be worshipped, revered, respected. There is no need to treat him, there is no need to put him in an asylum there is no need to give him shocks. But things go to the extreme always.
In the East it has happened that many mad people have been worshipped -- those who were mad from the head. They were simply crazy -- but they were worshipped because we have worshipped the madman of the heart and it is very difficult for the ordinary common masses to make the distinction. They almost look alike.
Now in the West the opposite is happening. People who would have been saints in the past... just think if Jesus came, was born in America today. Where would he be? Or Saint Francis of Assisi -- where would he be? In some madhouse. Jews treated Jesus very well. They killed him, but they never put him in a madhouse. That was more respectful.
But now, in the modern world, if he came back to somewhere in the West, he would be in a madhouse, Lying down on some Freudian couch, being given some electric shocks, drugged -- because psychoanalysts say that he was neurotic, his personality was neurotic, he was mad Of course the things that he said looked mad. He said, 'I am the Son of God.' What nonsense! Son of God? Megalomania! What is he talking about? He is not in his senses. He lives in a dream. He talks about the kingdom of God. All nonsense. Fairy tales. Good for children's books, but immature. He chose a better time to come.
Saint Francis of Assisi would certainly be in a madhouse. talking to trees, saying to the almond tree, 'Sister, how are you?' -- if he were here, he would have been caught. What are you doing? Talking to an almond tree? Sister, sing to me of God', he says to the almond tree. And not only that, he hears the song that the sister almond tree sings! Crazy! Needs treatment. He talks to the river and to the fish -- and he claims that the fish respond to him. He talks to stones and rocks -- is there any need for any more proof that he is mad?
He is mad but wouldn't you like to be mad like Saint Francis of Assisi? Just think -- the capacity to hear the almond tree singing, and the heart that can feel brothers and sisters in trees, the heart that can talk to the rock, the heart that sees God everywhere, all around, in every form.... It must be a heart of utmost love -- utter love reveals that mystery to you. But for the logical mind, of course these things are nonsense. To me, or to anybody who has known how to look at life through the heart, these are the only meaningful things. Become mad, if you can, become mad from the heart.
Now the last thing about this question. If your head comes to a breakdown, don't be worried. Use this opportunity of a de-structured state. In that moment, don't be worried that you are going mad; in that moment, slip into the heart. Someday, in the future, when psychology really comes of age, whenever somebody goes mad from the head we will help him to move towards the heart -- because an opportunity opens in that moment. The breakdown can become a breakthrough. The old structure is gone, now he is no longer in the clutches of reason, he is free for a moment. The modern psychology tries to go on adjusting him back to the old structure. All modern efforts are adjustive: how to make him normal again. The real psychology will do something else. The real psychology will use this opportunity because the old mind has disappeared, there is a gap. Use this interval and lead him towards another mind -- that is, the heart. Lead him towards another center of his being.
When you drive a car you change gears. Whenever you change the gear, there comes a moment when the gear moves through neutral; it has to move through the neutral gear. Neutral gear means no gear. From one gear to another, a moment comes when there is no gear. When one mind has failed, you are in a neutral state. Just now you are again as if you are born. Use this opportunity and lead the energy away from the old rotten structure which is falling. Leave the ruin. Move into the heart. Forget reason and let love be your center, your target. Each breakdown can become a breakthrough, and each possibility for the failure of the head can become a success for the heart -- the failure of the head can become a success for the heart.
Source - Osho Book "Ancient Music in the Pines"
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