It was a blazing afternoon. Temperature was rising to unbearable levels. The sun was terrorizing the earth as if fumes were coming out of the ground. Every living being was screaming for some relief. In the midst of this boiling afternoon, an old beggar was looking around for some aide. He was tired, hungry and thirsty. As he was slowly dragging himself in the market, he saw a temple ahead of him.
He was hopeful to get some food, some money from the devotees. He stood there for some time extending his trembling hand. People came and went. Nobody even looked at him.
Dejected, he walked further when he saw a mosque. Again he was hopeful but again he was ignored, disillusioned. Dripping with perspiration, he was hungry, frail and weak. With his shuddering feet he moved forward. There he saw a church, and again he felt a ray of hope. Tempted to try his luck again, he extended his begging bowl with a saddened face requesting for help. None gave a penny to him. He was totally shattered.
Disheartened, he started walking back. There was a local liquor bar on the side of the road. A drunkard walked out of the door, unstable and swinging under the influence of alcohol. He saw the beggar, slipped his hand in his coat pocket, removed a 50 rupee note and gave it to the bagger. Without even waiting for a moment he walked away…stumbling.
The Beggar was awestruck. Shocked. Surprised. Not able to believe his eyes and this unexpected display of kindness, he kept on looking at that 50 rupee note and the back of the drunk man. Tears started rolling down his wrinkled face. He looked up at the sky with a question in his eyes and murmured, –
“यार, रहेता कहाँ है और पता कहाँ का देता है? “
(“Yaar, raheta kahan hai aur pata kahan ka deta hai?” – My friend, where do you live and what address do you give?)
Osho says – “You will have to drop all the concepts that have been given to you from the outside, because God is not a person. No picture of God exists, no statue is possible. God is an experience! If you have the idea of a God which your parents and your society have given to you, you will go inside with that idea and that idea will be the hindrance — it will not allow you to see that which is. And God IS that which is. It needs no concepts to see; concepts blind you. Drop all concepts.
If you really want to go in, go as an agnostic. This word is beautiful. You must have heard the word ‘gnostic’; ‘gnostic’ means one who knows — gnosis means knowledge. ‘Agnostic’ means one who knows not; ‘agnostic’ means one who knows only one thing, that he knows not. Be an agnostic — that is the beginning of real religion.
Don’t believe, don’t disbelieve. Don’t be a Hindu, and don’t be a Jaina and don’t be a Christian, otherwise you will go on groping in darkness for ever and for ever. Unless you drop all ideologies, all philosophies, all religions, all systems of thought, and go inside empty, with nothing in your hand, with no idea…. How can you have an idea of God?
If a Chinese would make an idol of god, he will make the cheek bones as the Chinese would have, if a [Black man] is making god’s idol, he would make thick lips and round curly hair as like a [Black man]. If Hindu would be making it, it will be in a Hindu face, and in the entire world people make gods in their own images. If horses and donkeys will make their gods they will not make it in human form, but they will make it in their own images. It is the worshiping of ego that is happening all around by making our own images and worshipping them as our gods. Therefore it is important to remember this one sutra that whatever is made by a man would never lead us to that which is not made by anyone. Whoever wants to reach God has not to MAKE but to ERASE oneself.
You have not known him. Just go… with a great desire to know, but with no idea of knowledge with intensity to know, with a passionate love to know what is there, but don’t carry any ideas given to you by others. Drop them outside. That is the greatest barrier for the seeker on the path of truth.
God is there but you cannot see because your eyes are blinded by the concepts given to you. God is not a Jew, so if you have a Jewish idea of God you will not find him. God is not Hindu, Mohammedan or Christian.
I have heard a beautiful story about a Sufi mystic, Farid:
One night he dreams that by the grace of Allah, he has reached Paradise. And the whole of Paradise is decorated, millions of lights and flowers everywhere — some celebration is going on — and great music. He enquires, “What is going on?”
And they say, “This is God’s birthday — we are celebrating it. You have come at the right time.”
So he stands underneath a tree to see what is happening, because a great procession starts moving on the road. A man is sitting on a horse; he enquires, “Who is this man?” and they say, “Don’t you know him? He is Hajrat Mohammed.”
And then millions and millions of people behind him, and he asks, “Who are these people?” and he is replied to. “They are Mohammedans, followers of Mohammed.”
And then comes Jesus, and millions are following him. And then comes Krishna on his golden chariot, and millions again are following him. And so on and so forth… the procession continues, continues, continues.
And then finally, in the end, on an old donkey an old man is coming. And nobody is behind him; he is just alone. Farid starts laughing looking at this man — it is hilarious: nobody following him. And why should he be going on his donkey? He asks, “Who are you, sir? I have seen Mohammed, Christ, Krishna, Mahavira, Buddha — who are you? You look like a kind of joke! And nobody following you.”
And the old man is very sad and he says, “Yes, I am God. This is my birthday. But some people have become Mohammedans, some have become Christians, some have become Jews, some have become Hindus — nobody is left to be with me.”
Just out of shock, Farid woke up. He told his disciples the next day, “Now I am no more a Mohammedan. The dream has been a great revelation. Now I am no more part of any organized religion — I am simply myself. I would like to be with God, at least one person following him.”
If you have a certain idea of God, you will not be able to see him. Your very idea will become a barrier. Drop all ideas that you have gathered from without; only then can you go within.
God is there: you are there: just right tuning. And that’s what I am teaching to you: right tuning. Dropping all ideologies helps you to be rightly tuned. And once you are in tune with existence, that is bliss. You have come home….
Osho: The Fish in the Sea is Not Thirsty Chapter #8 Chapter title: Time to be Getting Home Q 1 (Excerpts)
बन्दे न होंगे जितने खुदा है खुदाई में
किस किस खुदा के सामने सजदा करे कोई?
Bande na honge jitne khuda hai khudai me,
Kis kis khuda ke samne sajda kare koi?
There are more gods than worshipers,
Who all does one bow to?
I love lyrics of this song defining God, Love and Truth from “Jhankaar Beats” (2003).