Just think for a
moment - if everybody were living according to his own nature, not
trying to be somebody else, a tremendous intelligence would explode
within you. It is something of the fundamental law of life and
It is good that flowers don′t listen to your teachers and your leaders and your politicians. Otherwise they would say to the roses, "What are you doing? Become a lotus!" Roses are not so foolish. But if, just for the argument′s sake, roses start trying to become lotuses, what is going to happen? Two things are certain: there will be no roses, because their whole energy will be involved in becoming lotuses, and the second thing, a rosebush cannot produce a lotus. It is not in the inbuilt program of its seed.
Have you ever come across a tree that you can say is an idiot? Or that it is very intelligent, a great giant, deserves a Nobel Prize? Man has been distracted. Everybody from your parents to your teachers, the school, the college, the university, your religion, your preachers, your neighbors - everybody is trying to make you somebody else whom you cannot become. You can only become yourself, or you can miss becoming - just an idiot.
I call this whole history of mankind a long, unjustified crime against every human individual. It has served the vested interests: the people who are in power, the people who are scholars, which is another kind of power, the people who are rich, which is another kind of power. They would not like everybody to be centered in himself because a man centered in himself cannot be exploited, cannot be enslaved, cannot be humiliated, cannot be forced to grow a cancerous sense of guilt. These are the reasons humanity has not been allowed its growth.
In Japan they have very ancient trees, four hundred years old... and they think that it is an art because the tree′s height is only six inches and it shows signs of old age. But a special strategy has been used, the same that has been used against humanity. They are rooted in pots, but the pots don′t have any bottom. So their roots are continually cut, and if the roots cannot go deep the tree cannot go high. There is a certain balance. The highest tree needs very deep roots to stand; otherwise it will fall. And if you go on cutting the roots, the tree goes on becoming old but it does not grow higher, to its natural intrinsic capacity. I don′t consider this an art, it is a crime against poor trees.
But the same crime has been committed against man. Your roots are being continuously cut. And that creates a retarded humanity.
A sage comes to a
village, and a man comes to him with tears in his eyes and he says,
"I don′t know how to get out of this suffering. My whole village
thinks I am an idiot. If I say something, they immediately condemn
me, criticize me. If I don′t say anything they laugh and they say,
′What can he say? He is an idiot.′ I am in such a fix. Hearing that
you are a sage I have come for some advice."
The sage said, "Don′t be worried. A very simple technique will change the whole situation within a month. And after one month I am coming back again on the same route, so I will be able to see whether the change has happened or not." And he gave a very simple technique to the man.
The technique was, "Don′t make any statement on your own. Just wait for somebody else to make the statement. Somebody says, ′How beautiful is the sunset!′ That is the point - immediately jump and ask him, ′What is beautiful in it? Define it! Explain! Do you know what beauty is? And if you don′t know what beauty is, how can you say that the sunset is beautiful? Before anything can be called beautiful, beauty has to be defined.′"
But even the greatest poets, philosophers - particularly those philosophers like Croce who have been dedicated to a single object, aesthetics - have not been able to define what is beauty. Although everybody knows... but to know is not enough.
Everybody knows what is good, but if the question is raised... define it! And one English philosopher, perhaps one of the most intelligent Englishmen of this century, G.E. Moore, has written a book, Principia Ethica. The whole book is devoted to a single question: what is good? And in two hundred and fifty pages of very arduous, very subtle, logical argumentation, the concluding remark is that good is indefinable.
Naturally, when after one month the sage came back, the idiot had already become the wisest man in the village, because he had stopped everybody. You say something and he would criticize it and ask for fundamental definitions. You could say a woman is beautiful and he would ask, "What is beautiful in that woman? Bones? A long nose? Stinking perspiration? What do you consider beauty?" There was no way to answer, and when people saw that they could not answer, they immediately started thinking that the man had been absolutely misunderstood. "He is not an idiot, he is a great thinker, a wise man, more intelligent than anybody else."
The sage was very happy; he said, "Are you happy now?"
The man said, "I am absolutely happy."
The sage said, "Remember always, never make a statement on your own. Just wait; somebody is going to say something - criticize. Somebody talks about God - criticize, ask for the evidence, ask for proofs. And there are no proofs and no evidence. Just remember one thing: never make a statement on your own; otherwise they will immediately jump on you and you will be an idiot again."
From the very childhood, everybody is condemned - whatever he says, whatever he does, it is never right. Naturally he becomes afraid of saying anything, of doing anything on his own. He is appreciated if he is obedient, he is appreciated if he follows the rules and the regulations made by others. Everybody appreciates him. This is the strategy: condemn the man if he is trying to stand on his own feet and appreciate the man if he is just an imitator. Naturally his inner seed, his potentiality, will never have a chance to grow.(Osho - Om Mani Padme Hum #10)