Be Ordinary

In ancient days, there was a very famous sculptor. His creations, art and skills were known all over through the sculptures that he had created over time. He was well rewarded and decorated with awards by the Kings. He could see the sculpture embedded in the stone as no one else could.

He met an astrologer who told him that on a particular day, six months later, he would die. The sculptor was worried as he did not want to die so soon. He thought of challenging and defying death to ensure that he could turn the prediction wrong. He decided to make 4 identical statues of himself just to confuse death and ultimately defy it. He started working on them.

On the day predicted by that astrologer, the sculptor was ready with his plan and arranged two statues on the right and two on the left as he stood in the middle. The Yamdoots (Angels of Death) came to take him away. They saw five identical persons standing in a row. They got confused that if by mistake they picked up the wrong person, their master YamRaaj (God of Death) would scold them as it would be an unpardonable mistake. They had never been in such a precarious situation before. They consulted among themselves and decided to report this unusual incident back to YamRaaj.

YamRaaj came with his angels and he too was shocked to see five identical individuals. He thought, The God of Creation Brahma had never made such mistake as he made every person and every thing so unique. So how come he made such a blunder in this case? YamRaaj too went back and consulted Vishnu. He narrated what he saw on the earth with utter dismay.

Vishnu smiled and said, “Let’s go, I want to see it for myself.” Vishnu saw five identical human figures standing in a row. In his mind he appreciated the work of this marvel. He took two rounds around those statues and in a loud voice, started praising the creator of this wonder. He pronounced that “I, Lord Vishnu, have never seen such a marvelous creation in my entire existence. This work of supernatural art has exceeded the ability and creativity of Lord Brahma. I salute the creator for this mind-blowing piece of art. If I ever meet this extraordinarily talented artist, I wish to congratulate him myself.”

The sculptor who was standing third in the row, was overwhelmed by the praise and compliments coming from Lord Vishnu. His ego swelled, he could not resist but to raise his hand and say, “Here I am Lord Vishnu, here I am. I am the creator of this extraordinary marvel.” As he took a step forward and stood before Lord Vishnu, Vishnu hugged him, patted him on his back and winked at YamRaaj who silently held the sculptor’s hand and said, “here you are, come, we were waiting for you.”

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Osho says: “I tell you to be just ordinary, because to try the extraordinary is a very ordinary thing — everybody wants that. And just to be ordinary, accept it, is very extraordinary because nobody wants it. I would like you to be just ordinary, so much so that nobody recognizes you as somebody in particular, so much so that you can be lost in the crowd. You will have a total freedom of being; otherwise you have to continuously hold yourself up. Then you are continuously on display — and that becomes a tension, that creates seriousness, that becomes a heavy burden.

There is no need to be continuously in the show window. You can relax, you can laugh.

I allow you everything that is human. All that is human is yours. Laugh like human beings. Cry, weep, like human beings. Be ordinary.

If you remain ordinary the ego will not arise. The ego arises with the idea of the extraordinary — so whatsoever people are doing, you are not meant to do it. If they walk on their feet, you are meant to stand on your head. Then they will come and worship you; they will say, “You are so extraordinary.” But you are simply being foolish. Don’t be bothered with their praise, because once you become addicted to their praise, you will he caught — then you will remain standing on your head for your whole life. You will lose all beauty of movement, and of course you cannot dance on your head. Have you ever seen any yogi? At the most you can just stand dead, doing shirshasan, the headstand.

When I say “bad company” I mean you have learned ego tricks from people who are deep in their egos. Avoid and escape from anybody who is on any ego trip because the possibility is he will give you some infection or other.

When I say “the bad company” I mean that the mind is imitative. Mind is unconsciously imitative. You will start learning tricks, and once you have learned them it will be difficult to them — and more so if those tricks have a great investment.

If people come and appreciate you, if people start respecting your non-laughing, non-humorous face and they think that you are very, very controlled, disciplined, and they come and touch your feet; it will be very difficult now for you to change your habit of seriousness — because you will be enjoying it. Now you have invested in your disease.

Your life has to be lived from the within, not from the without. Don’t be bothered about what people say — empty praise. Just look to what you are! If you are enjoying, delighting in your being, if you have a dancing soul inside — enough! Then if everybody condemns you, accept that. But never compromise with your inner delight, because ultimately that is going to decide who you are. What people say is irrelevant. Who you are is relevant. Always go in and look at what you are doing to yourself.

If you are happy then there is no question. If you feel that you are happy with your seriousness, then too there is no question; then you can be happy that way, then it is your choice. But I have never seen a man who is happy and serious. He will be joyous, he will be celebrating, he will be enjoying and sharing, and he will be laughing.

Laughter is so spiritual, nothing like it. Have you seen? When you laugh deeply, all tensions disappear. Have you watched? When you laugh deeply, suddenly, as if you have come to an open sky, the walls disappear around you. If you can laugh you can always relax.”

Osho, Yoga: The Alpha and the Omega, Vol 8, Ch 6, Q 3

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इसी लिए तो यहाँ अब भी अजनबी हूँ मैं,
तमाम लोग फ़रिश्ते हैं, आदमी हूँ मैं । बशीर बद्र

isī liye to yahāñ ab bhī ajnabī huuñ maiñ,
tamām log farishte haiñ aadmī huuñ maiñ. BASHIR BADR

I still remain unknown here
amongst all angels, I am only human.

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