What is meditation? | Osho


Published in: 1995

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The world is very different from the past. In one day we now receive what corresponds to about six weeks of intellectual impression 600 years ago. Today, meditation is needed more than ever. The author Osho has been described by the English Sunday Times as one of the thousand people who shaped the 20th century and by The Sunday Mid-Day (India) as one of the ten people who – together with Gandhi, Nehru and Buddha – have changed the fate of India.

MEDITATION IS PLAYFULLNESS AND CREATIVE. Meditation is not effort. You have to be very playful; you have to learn that it is fun. You must not take it too seriously. If you are playful, the intellect cannot destroy your meditation. Otherwise, it turns into another ego trip and you can take yourself too seriously. Meditation is also creative – be less effective and more creative. Do not worry too much about utility goals.

MEDITATION IS SILENCE AND REMEMBERING. The intellect is nothing but all the words you have collected; silence is what has always been with you, it is not something you have accumulated. Remembering is the essential part of meditation, remembering that “I am”. While sitting, talking, eating, walking, remember that “I am”.

MEDITATION IS AWAKENING, YOUR TRUE NATURE AND NON-DOING. Whatever you do, do it with a deep alertness; then even small things become sacred. Meditation is beyond the intellect, and the intellect cannot reach meditation. Everything can be accomplished by the intellect except meditation. Meditation is not an achievement – it already exists, it is your true nature. Meditation is to refrain from being occupied. Non-doing is a way of going inward. If the intellect can rest a little, it will rejuvenate. It will strengthen their intelligence, their efficiency, their skill.

MEDITATION IS TO WITNESS. Meditation begins with being separated from the intellect, with being a witness. One can thus say that mediation is another name for observing and witnessing – without evaluating or critically making an assessment. Just by looking, you immediately get distance to the intellect. Through their persistent observation, the flow of thoughts eventually begins to diminish. Thoughts settle down by themselves, you do not have to wrestle with them, you do not have to try to keep them in order.

MEDITATION IS A JUMP OF THOUGHT. Try this: do not think about it, try to witness your own thoughts. Let your thoughts wander around just like pictures on a movie screen. See them, look at them, make them your objects. One thought arises: consider it in-depth. Do not think about it, just look at it. If you start thinking about it, you are no longer a witness. When the intellect is not functioning, you are witnessing, then you are conscious.

MEDITATION IS INTELLIGENCE. When you do something, immediately look for the driving force, because if you miss the underlying motive, the intellect continues to deceive you and say that the motive was different. If you can find the right driving force, the intellect becomes even more incapable of misleading you. Not a single thought in the intellect is ever original, it is always a repetition. As soon as the intellect says something, it leads you back to the routine.

MEDITATION IS FREEDOM. If your joy is dependent on the other, there can never be any freedom in that joy. And a joy that does not contain freedom is not much to joy. If you are dependent on the other, there is a limit. The happiness that comes from love is temporary. Meditation is to be united with life forever.

MEDITATION IS NOT ESCAPISM. Meditation means to leave desires, to leave thoughts, to leave the intellect. Meditation means relaxing in the moment, in the present. Meditation is the only thing in the world that is not escapism, even though it is considered to be just that.

MEDITATION IS AWARENESS AND COOL. Every situation must be an opportunity to meditate. Meditation is to become aware of what you are doing, to become aware of what is happening to you. A lesson is mentioned in the book “my son, when someone insults you, then tell him that you should meditate on it for 24 hours before you answer him”. Temptations never come from outside; it is about repressed desires, repressed energy, repressed anger, repressed sexuality, repressed greed, which creates temptations. These come from within.

MEDITATION IS A SPACE. The moment you become aware of how the intellect works, you are not the intellect. This consciousness in itself means that you have gone beyond the intellect; you have become a prudent observer. The more aware you become, the more you will be able to see the spaces between the experience and the words. A consciousness that is focused only on words is non-meditative while a consciousness that is focused only on the spaces is meditative. Whenever you become unaware of the spaces, the words are lost.

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