Where the Nightbreed revel unbridled.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Why Am I A Buddhist?: My First Buddhism Essay

Why am I a Buddhist?

Note to all Dharma friends reading this, if you find any discrepancies with the below article, please don't take me too harshly. I study from books by myself. What I present here is my own interpretation. I shall not quote anything from Buddhist texts as I intend this to be readable to laypeople and a light and thought-provoking read.

It might cause some degree of surprise to people whenever I confess to an allegiance with Buddhism, especially when I am the person who seem to be engrossed in the unconventional, violent-natured black metal music and one who seem to have a keen interest in depressing and destructive literature and philosophies. Please do not negate me as a deeply confused person or a blind follower of doctrines. In this essay, I shall try to explain, to my best abilities, how I think Buddhism is a largely revelant school of philosophy in the stress-laden world of today. I will try not to proselytize here; I do not wish to attract unnecessary comments from people who prefer to remain open-minded. With that said, just read this with a light heart, I just hope you will gather some alternative viewpoints from this. Here I go.

Firstly, I would like to touch on how an ancient faith that have spawned in the BC era, India, could have so much to do with our lives at this moment. Buddhism – unlike many other theistic religions in the world, namely Christianity or Islam, to name a few, professes no Higher Deity as the Ultimate Authority, this special faith rather uses the image of Sakyamuni Guatama Siddhartha Buddha to inspire Buddhists to embark on their very own paths of Enlightenment or nirvana. The word – Buddha, which means “Enlightened Being”, could have implied that enlightenment is not exclusive. In other words, there is not strict dogmas that followers, and there always have been a force to spur others to use logical reasoning to find their own answers regarding issues in life. Although there is a basic guideline for followers that own speed up the process of gaining truths, that set of guideline is called Dharma. What boils down from the Dharma is the essence that there are The Four Noble Truths, The Three Jewels, and the Eightfold Path. I shall not ramble on technicality of the above-mentioned aspects. In brevity, one could eventually reach Enlightenment by recognizing the Four Noble Truths – that the unbridled pursuit for sensual pleasures will not bring ultimate contentment, and by using and maintaining the right mindset in life.

Many of modern city dwellers like myself would have, at some point of time, realised and felt the irritation when you had difficulty in obtaining something you think you will be happy when equipped with; or you will be equally annoyed when you wanted to avoid the drudgeries of living but you simply can't. This does not happen rarely, I confidently assert. What humans fail to notice is, in long term, that such pursuits are endless and they will bring you more hardships then anything else. This is evident in many high-achievers of today, they have gathered millions in their bank accounts, yet they are not inherently satisfied. Buddhism works in a way that one's mind will be acquainted with the notion that happiness lies in the recognition that sensual pleasures are barren from quintessential importance, and by the process of sharpening of our mind faculties or meditation, we will see things clearly and make right decisions to draw nearer to Enlightenment. However, I will need to clear some misconceptions that might have arise from some of you reading here. You might rebuke me by saying that so if I were to deprive myself from any cravings of sorts, enlightenment will come rapidly. Hmm, if you deprive yourself from food – taste pleasures, you will be dead sooner than you think enlightenment is coming your way. Thus, Buddha once said either extremity or indulgence will work, moderation and personal self-discretion is the key. This is tremendously applicable to the modern people like us, who prefers to lead fulfilling lives without having to be burdened with strict dogmatic regulations.

The second reason why I am in great favour of Buddhism is the intense nature of introspection of answers by the practice of meditation. Buddhists are not encouraged at all to be fanatical about Buddha, instead, a constant albeit healthy questioning of the Dharma would be applauded. Shifting focus from the assurance of a close adherence of moral codes or the reinforcement of a sinner's image in everyone, this faith steadily gives inspiration to its fellowship that we will be liberated when we adopt the buddha mindset or bodhicitta or buddhanature and become exalted buddhas in the end of the cycle. This buddha mindset is cultivated by meditation – the quieting our cluttered minds, letting them enrich in generating a general compassion for all living things, and achieving a state of tranquility or gentle awareness of sensations and thoughts. That's the stepping stone for enlightenment. Yes, it is that straightforward. I am personally immensely inspired by this process, as it's practical-based and involves no other complex technicalities of rituals or prayers or heavenly hierarchy that many other beliefs involve. I am even more impressed by the great fact that anybody could have a taste of enlightenment, and the latter is well within the reach of anyone, regardless of one's heinous background, as it could be effortlessly overwhelmed by the goodness of the Buddhist teachings if he could acquaint himself with it and to practice introspective meditations.

I have anticipated that some of you would question me, “So Buddhism is about training our minds to reside in a state non-thinking and ourselves in docile behaviour?” I would like to add a few more points. Let's just visualise a situation where you are about to infuriate in a fit of anger when something unsatisfactory occurred without an a decent explanation. Buddhists will not fall into escapism by pretending nothing has happened and chose not to think anything about it, accepting whatever comes their directions. Instead, Buddhists will use complementary emotions to nullify the surging emotions they have, for example, love to counter with anger. When the anger has subsided, Buddhists will think logically on how to resolve the situation with grace. Buddhists feel that it's important to cultivate a sense of tranquility as it will aid in solving tough situations effectively as negative emotions are not meddling with our actions, speech and thoughts.

With the above few paragraphs, I have, to my best abilities, summarized the core essence of Buddhism. I hope I have done a decent job at that. I also hope you had an enjoyable and refreshing read, and I have not caused any incoherency in my writings.

In conclusion, Buddhism – a school of thought that is so opportunistic and optimistic for everyone, one that could bring much inner peace to its practitioner, one that is so rational and deeply applicable to humanity of all ages. I could only say one thing against Buddhism is that it should not be categorised under Religion, as it is, in essence, a philosophy science. Otherwise, Buddhism could easily be the answer to Life. And that is why I am a Buddhist.

I thank you profusely for reading.

Written by: Ng Ling Xuan “LingNemesis” December 2007.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Prajñāpāramitā Hṛdaya Sūtra

Avalokiteshavra, the Holy Lord and Bodhisattva, was moving in the deep course of the Wisdom which has gone beyond.

He looked down from on high, He beheld but five heaps, and He saw that in their own-being they were empty.

Here, O Sariputra,

form is emptiness and the very emptiness is form ;

emptiness does not differ from form, form does not differ from emptiness, whatever is emptiness, that is form,

the same is true of feelings, perceptions, impulses, and consciousness.

Here, O Sariputra,

all dharmas are marked with emptiness ;

they are not produced or stopped, not defiled or immaculate, not deficient or complete.

Therefore, O Sariputra,

in emptiness there is no form nor feeling, nor perception, nor impulse, nor consciousness ;

No eye, ear, nose, tongue, body, mind ; No forms, sounds, smells, tastes, touchables or objects of mind ; No sight-organ element, and so forth, until we come to :

No mind-consciousness element ; There is no ignorance, no extinction of ignorance, and so forth, until we come to : There is no decay and death, no extinction of decay and death. There is no suffering, no origination, no stopping, no path.

There is no cognition, no attainment and no non-attainment.

Therefore, O Sariputra,

it is because of his non-attainmentness that a Bodhisattva, through having relied on the Perfection of Wisdom, dwells without thought-coverings. In the absence of thought-coverings he has not been made to tremble,

he has overcome what can upset, and in the end he attains to Nirvana.

All those who appear as Buddhas in the three periods of time fully awake to the utmost, right and perfect Enlightenment because they have relied on the Perfection of Wisdom.

Therefore one should know the prajnaparamita as the great spell, the spell of great knowledge, the utmost spell, the unequalled spell, allayer of all suffering, in truth -- for what could go wrong ? By the prajnaparamita has this spell been delivered. It runs like this :

gate gate paragate parasamgate bodhi svaha.

( Gone, gone, gone beyond, gone altogether beyond, O what an awakening, all-hail ! -- )

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Singapore: A Modern "Democratic" Authoritarian Country .

Singapore: A Modern "Democratic" Authoritarian Country .

When one thinks of Singapore, he or she might get reminded of towering skyscrapers in the central business district area, a bustling shopping belt, many delicate and tempting food and a clean and safe island country in South East Asia. While it might be true that Singapore is doing relatively brilliant in terms of economic growth and her position of a developed country is certain, what one is masked from is how deceiving this whole situation appears. Singapore is formally known as a democratic nation, however, it is also an unsaid truth Singapore is modern authoritarian state.

As a Singaporean, I shall divulge on some more facts that lead to the above-mentioned description of the country. I just hope I won't get arrested by doing this!

Firstly, capital punishment, by hanging, is still frequently used in Singapore, usually for offenses like murder, possession of drugs (anything above 5 miligrams). An extremely barbaric form of penalty, many other countries will reply in utmost discontent. Still, Singapore remains unfaltered in her stance towards this issue. Once, a couple of years back, Singapore sentenced an Australian to death for carrying the illegal amount of drugs. This ignited an international uproar, especially in Australia. Singapore received massive condemnations. Putfile.com even blocked access from Singapore for this. Yet, Singapore remained firm on its ideals and did not even offered a decent explanation. Speaking of punishment, Singapore has another notorious penchant - caning. Brutal in the eyes of many, even inhumane. Prison canings often scar the offenders for life. Worse still, I am informed that if the offenders were to faint from extreme pain, they will be drowsed in cold water to wake them, let them rest for a day or two, and continue the flogging until it is completed. Michael Fay of USA, then 16, was sentenced to 24 strokes of the cane for various acts of vandalism, back in the 1980s. Much opposition from USA was aroused, Singapore, again, remaining firm, refused to budge an inch.

Secondly, something more subtle this paragraph, Singapore claims to be a Democratic country. Behind its shady veils, the heartlanders know a different version of the story. Although elections were held as per any country would, every 4 years, for each town constituencies. Locals do know, obviously, that Singapore is practically One-Party-Ruled. This famous party is belovedly known as People's Action Party (PAP), spearheaded by Prime Minister Lee Hisen Loong (son of the First Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew). Oppostion parties - Worker's Party and Singapore Democratic Party to name a few, lack manpower and support. After each election, PAP will expand their terrorities futhur and futhur. Leaving minimal space for the other parties to showcase their interest in the citizens. As of 2006, around 90% of Singapore is governed by PAP, leaving practically no say for other opinions. This has a more negative impact when we consider the process of policy-making in the Parliament. With the majority of power given to PAP, diversity and open expression are severely limited, thus, the usual rigid nature of Singapore laws, albeit the recent discussion of abolition of the Homosexuality Bill 377A. On this note, let me amplify this political blandness by giving an example that Singapore Democratic Party's leader - Mr. Chee Soon Juan was jailed 5 weeks for speaking in public without a valid permit in November 2006. There has been numerous instances which eluded my memory. One needs to apply for a permit to give public speeches, and a draft of your speech has to be submitted, making sure no one would say anything jeopardising to the nation or society.Another one is that there has been cases of bloggers getting jailed or sued for posting racially-unfriendly content in 2005 and 2006, although many believed their entries were relatively mild. Singapore podcast like mr.brown, which expresses the true Singaporean thought, received scrutinisation from the government initially, the content was diluted after which, in fear of repercussions of the laws. In the light of the post 9/11 attacks, Singapore has put in place The Internal Security Act which allows infinite detentions of any suspected terrorists without trial. Thus, Singaporeans have a conditioned mindset that their opinions are insignificant and the government will be beneficial for them ultimately. Liberal is a term that most Singaporeans are not familiar with, evidently.

By now, I have an feeling that most readers will feel repulsed by what I have just shared. There are enough facts to show that Singapore is not what it appears as, I believe, to bring out my point. Regardless of the sustained security Singaporeans has been enjoying since its independence in 1960, it is still not very justifiable when our say is restricted and that harsh corrective methods are there, to cause fear in others. Someone needs to arouse this latently-repressed country from its slumber.

- Nemesis, December 2007


Friday, December 07, 2007

Courtesy of ANUS.com.

Metaphysical intelligence

When we typically speak of intelligence we think of it as raw biological machine power, but is it really just all that for us humans?

IQ testing is the most empirical and scientifically reasonable medium for concise analysis of human brain potential but it completely circumvents around the metaphysical and inexplicable. I've always pondered the validity of genetics being the sole decisive factor of all-around human potential, and I have realized there is more than meets the eye. To begin with, creativity and wisdom along with other unquantifiable factors of human potential require the possession of a very particular connection with reality. By 'reality' I mean something greater than what our five senses alone can perceive. To speak in indicatory riddles; reality is roughly existent and non-existent matter devoid of emotion, law, bounds, restrictions, morality, opinion, mortality, immortality and whatever anthropocentric terms may be attached to the world by us, but is a indefinable 'chaos'. A nihilism which we can alter in the freest, most creative and most resourceful ways conceivable to give our lives as high and fulfilling a purpose as we can (more fulfilling than the TV box and the neon lights).

What creates a human that transcends his material parts? One must strengthen the intangible connection with reality and become the very embodiment of it. From this connection develops the most special creativity and wisdom. One must furthermore let all (negative) emotions be expelled from their perception pattern through rigors, discipline, experience and the remove mental impurities through meditation and acute concentration. The results can be astonishing. Through proper cultivation one can achieve an indifference toward egoistic emotions and a calm objectivity in ones perception. The cool controlled mind can be at a distinct tactical advantage over the aggressive, underdeveloped, over-stimulated minds of the masses, transcending the miserable, fatalistic trappings of the obsessive, all-to-serious personalities common to this trifling age.

Reality therefore is potential. The conclusion is that everyone has the keys to unlock a higher connection with reality but few choose to use them. These great keys define the core of your existence and would grant you the knowledge of an infinite number of secrets. The unlocked mind can see reality in its many different forms, the uncultivated one can barely make sense of the material consequences it has right in front of them.

An example; the majority of children nowadays are not raised adequately enough to become metaphysical experts, they are being treated too softly, infatuated with an abundance of plastic toys, ill cartoons and excessive socialization, The most "evil and adult" things are kept from them until they reach a certain age that is morally acceptable to society for them to face "reality", but by then they'll be unable to cope properly with any amount of exposure to reality so retreat into fantasy and egoism. These kids are raised on fantasy and not on realism as it should be from the very beginning; therefore their connection with reality is minimal and so to their potential to explore existence creatively is also minimal. The children that are raised in strict discipline that consists of cold, hard and confrontation with reality can learn to mature much faster than the average child. Reality is healthy. Arrogant snobs with a high IQ are everywhere, but they lack the necessary connection with reality to make them worthy of the air of superiority they bestow upon themselves. They are simply pompous egoists wrapped in unrealism. The same can be said for "christian intellectuals". Moralistic and anti-animalistic religions that aren't a symbolic reflection of the natural order also suffer from negative distortion. Earth and nature constitute our physical existence and are therefore the very essence of reality. Denying them can in no way be considered a reflection of intelligence, yet the lack of a correlation between the statistical measure of intellect and the ability to connect with and to accept reality undermines the validity of the statistical measure. Such people are not necessarily inferior in comprehending reality because of their genes, but simply because of their unrealistic religion. This of course isn't to convey a message against genetics, but simply to express the idea of reality from the viewpoint of the nihilistic metaphysical, in which genetics are only one inherent component out of many in a larger whole.

IQ is calculating and scientific whereas humankind and the wider reality they are apart of are not always so predictable. Therefore IQ's can be misleading when it comes to the valuation of human beings mental capabilities. Science cannot explain it all, especially the contemporary sciences, which have adapted to a rigid and dogmatically unrealistic worldview such as is fitting in the modern age. It is to easily susceptible to subjectivity, political bias and irrelevant emotionality (all too human) thus is not connected to the aforementioned "chaos nihil". We must be careful when we tread the grounds of so called "objective and concrete" science that have become a sort of secular messiah capable of explaining literally everything. It operates almost like the structure of words, which are a system of conveyance through symbols and vague subjectivities. This isn't to say however that science should be completely disregarded, it is a fascinating discipline to undertake, but it's not the alpha and the omega. Wherever there is great spirituality, creativity and high goals found within you, do never lose grasp of them or you have lost grasp of reality, of life.

December 21, 2006


Saturday, June 16, 2007

Sunn o)))'s Black One

The following writings are found in the macabre lyric booklet of Sunn o)))'s Black One album, enjoy;


I Scabs of the past peeling slowly from a dark and distant memory. emptiness. whispering menace glinting beneath the skin. consumption in the vast eternal maw. decaying teeth flickering over the tongue of the fearless debasement of eternal torment. Dark is the light. And everything is black.

II Carried along the eternal corridor, entombed in the sarcophagus of hate, lined with the flayed hide of the weak, draped in the lungs of the aborted. tongues drooling the acidic fear of menace. peeling skin to bones. blackening with cancerous shame. disembowelled by the grotesque and carried forth on hands of wicker. buried in the wailing mud of rejection, the voices of doom carried on the winds of the virus. a thousand voices darken the great unholy destination where the mighty winged ones sleep, awaiting you, broken and dissected, their teeth filed into the sacred shapes of the damned.

III Held down by faceless darkness, the universe shrinking back through time. a mouth held open to the bottomless pit, the flavour of the death of all that have come before, the air bloated and brittle with fear. solidifying. forever mummified in the molten ruins of the rejected, their gleeful pain a molten wave that consumes. fields of blood and onyx carry your remains to the last chariot of stone drawn by the great caribon, dragged across the valley of the endless void, to a place where no word exists, where you are left atop the final precipice. the vast expanse of hopelessness stretching into the infinite. beckoning with the shattered feathered hands of the damned.

IV Face down where the ancient soil meets the discarded flesh. the great stentch of all that is rotten. and forgotten. the unburied chamber into what you were. feating on the joy that is stolen forever. an alchemy of disgust and hatred. the unceremonius . the smell of all final moments at once. embedded in the great beasts flesh, the carrier of the tormented. the final journey through the impossible, a silence so vast that deafens with its roaring certainty. to the unnamed place, guarded by the ancient carrion and their minions of vomit and pestilence.

V Alone. unalive. forgotten and abandoned where only the discarded dwell. the scurrying of footsteps so large planets fall into the great pit. entire civilizations consumed on the slow frenzy of despair. an unholiness that judges without reason. digested by something so hungry, so insatiable. a gleeful darkness that knows you have arrived. and has always known. something that shoud never have been. something waiting with a patience truly terrifying. that is everything and nothing. a darkness that binds all together in fear and eternity. Await.

VI Something comes. something that you should never have known calls. summoned by a vastness that kills certianity without thought. the boulders of blood open their gates. for it is here that the universe fears to believe. the gateway to the infinite hunger opens. the eternal swarms that darken darkness beckon with their flawless misshapen menace. a knowledge that is so certain it has been locked away. here it dwells, draped in the void. the very flesh of darkness. where the unholiest caress their nightmare. the resting place of all that is damned. For here you are unwelcome. un-alive and incarrcerated in the place where the murdered stones bleed onto the tongue of damnation.

VII Here. Decompose forever. aware and unholy. encased in marble and honey from the swarm. a thin coat of infernal whispering that bleaches from within a darkness that defiles thought. stolen by the wingless harpies whose memories lay waste the valley of diamonds, where the One sleeps. her eyes, placid pits of violent tar and bitumen regurgitated by demons chained to misery. eyes that see nothing for there is only the darness that wells up from inside. a great viscous cloud smothering hope. a blanket woven from the dung of the old ones. their disease the tapestry of all that is futile. her gaze burning holes in the veil that protects the chosen. her breathe a plague that unleashes the frozen wolves, blind, their tongues paint your heart with scorpions. their pestilence an invitation to the only one that matters for She is the presence that is all that is un-named, for it is Her, the unbegotten Mistress of the eternal hunger. dwell forever in her great unholy stomach where the damned befoul themselves in the glory of her fecund and bloody history. worhsip in the torment of a million wasted lives. bathe in the horror that the blood of time carries with the plague. and befoul yourself with worship, for she hates you eternally with the ferocious lust that binds all that inhabit the wasted and forgotten, the blissful loathing of you is now all that remains. alone. forgotten and Damned. "

So deliciously dark.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

A Burzum Story: Part VIII - On Overgrown Paths

© & ® Varg Vikernes. Do not reproduce, respect the copyrights.

A Burzum Story: Part VIII - On Overgrown Paths

There are many ways we can follow through life, but a vast majority chooses to follow the herd on the wide and easily passable tarmac road that only leads to spiritual mediocrity and stagnation. At the end of the road they leave no trace of their existence behind and simply pass into oblivion. Like cattle they follow the individual in front of them, with little thought to what they are doing, and they walk straight into the nothingness. They choose this path because it offers them the least resistance and the most comfortable life.

There are other ways, though, other paths that man can follow through life. Naturally the paths our forefathers followed are overgrown today. Nobody has walked on these paths for a very long time, and the wild nature has reclaimed most of them. We have to search carefully to even find out they exist. However, these paths are not easy ways. Those who follow the overgrown paths will, on their way, stumble over mossy rocks and roots in dark forests, they will frequently slip and fall in the mud, get stuck in bogs and have to swim through dangerous currents. Apart from the occasional wanderer one might encounter out there, in the wilderness, it is also a very lonely path to follow. You mostly walk alone.

When the overgrown paths cross the tarmac road of the herd, the lone traveler - filthy, often messy and dressed in rags - will be met by a hail of abusive language; mockery, scorn, fear and even hatred. The cattle are used to obediently follow the individual in front of them with no intrusions. An individual traveling in another direction, or crossing the road, will always cause confusion and uncertainty in their featherbrained ranks.

The herd finds no mysterious secrets, no spiritual enlightenment or ancient lore on the tarmac road. The runes and golden pieces of the gods can only be found in the green grass or under the moss, on the overgrown paths. The enlightenment will only be achieved by the individual who leaves the footsteps of the person in front of him or her and looks up towards the sky, for a change. The ancient lore will only be learned by those who walk where the ancients once walked, and do like our forefathers did.

It is not easy to find the exit roads leading to the overgrown paths from the highway. Most people just rush by them, not even knowing they are there. You have to look for them, often in the most unlikely places, and even you might fail to find them. Others are more lucky, in the sense that they are given the directions by others. Destiny is perhaps all that matters, and those who are predetermined to find the overgrown paths will in any case eventually find them. Whether they like or not.

I am walking on such an overgrown path, and perhaps that is the why it sometimes is hard for people to comprehend what I am saying, doing and thinking about, and why many react with disgust or fear no matter what I do or say. But so what? I know what really matters in life and I only really care about the "spiritual heroes and heroines", the Einherjers and Valkyries I occasionally meet out there in the wilderness, who have found their own exit from the tarmac road. I only really care about the strong individuals who are out looking for the runes, the gold of the gods, in the green grass. I only really respect the others who do like me and walk on overgrown paths. The mediocre masses matter no whit. Valhalla is not for the sheep.

Varg "Loki" Vikernes
(December 2004)

Aurum nostrum non est aurum vulgi
(Our gold is not like the gold of the common man)


Thursday, May 17, 2007

Nirvana by Osho

This story is perhaps the clearest description someone has ever made about what if feels like to become enlightened. It is quite long but absolutely worth reading.
By Osho.

I AM REMINDED of the fateful day of twenty-first March, 1953. For many lives I had been working — working upon myself, struggling, doing whatsoever can be done — and nothing was happening.

Now I understand why nothing was happening. The very effort was the barrier, the very ladder was preventing, the very urge to seek was the obstacle. Not that one can reach without seeking. Seeking is needed, but then comes a point when seeking has to be dropped. The boat is needed to cross the river but then comes a moment when you have to get out of the boat and forget all about it and leave it behind. Effort is needed, without effort nothing is possible. And also only with effort, nothing is possible.

Just before twenty-first March, 1953, seven days before, I stopped working on myself. A moment comes when you see the whole futility of effort. You have done all that you can do and nothing is happening. You have done all that is humanly possible. Then what else can you do? In sheer helplessness one drops all search.

And the day the search stopped, the day I was not seeking for something, the day I was not expecting something to happen, it started happening. A new energy arose — out of nowhere. It was not coming from any source. It was coming from nowhere and everywhere. It was in the trees and in the rocks and the sky and the sun and the air — it was everywhere. And I was seeking so hard, and I was thinking it is very far away. And it was so near and so close.

Just because I was seeking I had become incapable of seeing the near. Seeking is always for the far, seeking is always for the distant — and it was not distant. I had become far-sighted, I had lost the near-sightedness. The eyes had become focussed on the far away, the horizon, and they had lost the quality to see that which is just close, surrounding you.

The day effort ceased, I also ceased. Because you cannot exist without effort, and you cannot exist without desire, and you cannot exist without striving.

The phenomenon of the ego, of the self, is not a thing, it is a process. It is not a substance sitting there inside you; you have to create it each moment. It is like pedalling bicycle. If you pedal it goes on and on, if you don’t pedal it stops. It may go a little because of the past momentum, but the moment you stop pedalling, in fact the bicycle starts stopping. It has no more energy, no more power to go anywhere. It is going to fall and collapse.

The ego exists because we go on pedalling desire, because we go on striving to get something, because we go on jumping ahead of ourselves. That is the very phenomenon of the ego — the jump ahead of yourself, the jump in the future, the jump in the tomorrow. The jump in the non-existential creates the ego. Because it comes out of the non-existential it is like a mirage. It consists only of desire and nothing else. It consists only of thirst and nothing else.

The ego is not in the present, it is in the future. If you are in the future, then ego seems to be very substantial. If you are in the present the ego is a mirage, it starts disappearing.

The day I stopped seeking… and it is not right to say that I stopped seeking, better will be to say the day seeking stopped. Let me repeat it: the better way to say it is the day the seeking stopped. Because if I stop it then I am there again. Now stopping becomes my effort, now stopping becomes my desire, and desire goes on existing in a very subtle way.

You cannot stop desire; you can only understand it. In the very understanding is the stopping of it. Remember, nobody can stop desiring, and the reality happens only when desire stops.

So this is the dilemma. What to do? Desire is there and Buddhas go on saying desire has to be stopped, and they go on saying in the next breath that you cannot stop desire. So what to do? You put people in a dilemma. They are in desire, certainly. You say it has to be stopped — okay. And then you say it cannot be stopped. Then what is to be done?

The desire has to be understood. You can understand it, you can just see the futility of it. A direct perception is needed, an immediate penetration is needed. Look into desire, just see what it is, and you will see the falsity of it, and you will see it is non-existential. And desire drops and something drops simultaneously within you.

Desire and the ego exist in cooperation, they coordinate. The ego cannot exist without desire, the desire cannot exist without the ego. Desire is projected ego, ego is introjected desire. They are together, two aspects of one phenomenon.

The day desiring stopped, I felt very hopeless and helpless. No hope because no future. Nothing to hope because all hoping has proved futile, it leads nowhere. You go in rounds. It goes on dangling in front of you, it goes on creating new mirages, it goes on calling you, ‘Come on, run fast, you will reach.’ But howsoever fast you run you never reach.

That’s why Buddha calls it a mirage. It is like the horizon that you see around the earth. It appears but it is not there. If you go it goes on running from you. The faster you run, the faster it moves away. The slower you go, the slower it moves away. But one thing is certain — the distance between you and the horizon remains absolutely the same. Not even a single inch can you reduce the distance between you and the horizon.

You cannot reduce the distance between you and your hope. Hope is horizon. You try to bridge yourself with the horizon, with the hope, with a projected desire. The desire is a bridge, a dream bridge — because the horizon exists not, so you cannot make a bridge towards it, you can only dream about the bridge. You cannot be joined with the non-existential.

The day the desire stopped, the day I looked and realized into it, it simply was futile. I was helpless and hopeless. But that very moment something started happening. The same started happening for which for many lives I was working and it was not happening.

In your hopelessness is the only hope, and in your desirelessness is your only fulfillment, and in your tremendous helplessness suddenly the whole existence starts helping you.

It is waiting. When it sees that you are working on your own, it does not interfere. It waits. It can wait infinitely because there is no hurry for it. It is eternity. The moment you are not on your own, the moment you drop, the moment you disappear, the whole existence rushes towards you, enters you. And for the first time things start happening.

Seven days I lived in a very hopeless and helpless state, but at the same time something was arising. When I say hopeless I don’t mean what you mean by the word hopeless. I simply mean there was no hope in me. Hope was absent. I am not saying that I was hopeless and sad. I was happy in fact, I was very tranquil, calm and collected and centered. Hopeless, but in a totally new meaning. There was no hope, so how could there be hopelessness. Both had disappeared.

The hopelessness was absolute and total. Hope had disappeared and with it its counterpart, hopelessness, had also disappeared. It was a totally new experience — of being without hope. It was not a negative state. I have to use words — but it was not a negative state. It was absolutely positive. It was not just absence, a presence was felt. Something was overflowing in me, overflooding me.

And when I say I was helpless, I don’t mean the word in the dictionary-sense. I simply say I was selfless. That’s what I mean when I say helpless. I have recognized the fact that I am not, so I cannot depend on myself, so I cannot stand on my own ground — there was no ground underneath. I was in an abyss… bottomless abyss. But there was no fear because there was nothing to protect. There was no fear because there was nobody to be afraid.

Those seven days were of tremendous transformation, total transformation. And the last day the presence of a totally new energy, a new light and new delight, became so intense that it was almost unbearable — as if I was exploding, as if I was going mad with blissfulness. The new generation in the West has the right word for it — I was blissed out, stoned.

It was impossible to make any sense out of it, what was happening. It was a very non-sense world — difficult to figure it out, difficult to manage in categories, difficult to use words, languages, explanations. All scriptures appeared dead and all the words that have been used for this experience looked very pale, anaemic. This was so alive. It was like a tidal wave of bliss.

The whole day was strange, stunning, and it was a shattering experience. The past was disappearing, as if it had never belonged to me, as if I had read about it somewhere, as if I had dreamed about it, as if it was somebody else’s story I have heard and somebody told it to me. I was becoming loose from my past, I was being uprooted from my history, I was losing my autobiography. I was becoming a non-being, what Buddha calls anatta. Boundaries were disappearing, distinctions were disappearing.

Mind was disappearing; it was millions of miles away. It was difficult to catch hold of it, it was rushing farther and farther away, and there was no urge to keep it close. I was simply indifferent about it all. It was okay. There was no urge to remain continuous with the past.

By the evening it became so difficult to bear it — it was hurting, it was painful. It was like when a woman goes into labour when a child is to be born, and the woman suffers tremendous pain — the birth pangs.

I used to go to sleep in those days near about twelve or one in the night, but that day it was impossible to remain awake. My eyes were closing, it was difficult to keep them open. Something was very imminent, something was going to happen. It was difficult to say what it was — maybe it is going to be my death — but there was no fear. I was ready for it. Those seven days had been so beautiful that I was ready to die, nothing more was needed. They had been so tremendously blissful, I was so contented, that if death was coming, it was welcome.

But something was going to happen — something like death, something very drastic, something which will be either a death or a new birth, a crucifixion or a resurrection — but something of tremendous import was around just by the corner. And it was impossible to keep my eyes open. I was drugged.

I went to sleep near about eight. It was not like sleep. Now I can understand what Patanjali means when he says that sleep and samadhi are similar. Only with one difference — that in samadhi you are fully awake and asleep also. Asleep and awake together, the whole body relaxed, every cell of the body totally relaxed, all functioning relaxed, and yet a light of awareness burns within you… clear, smokeless. You remain alert and yet relaxed, loose but fully awake. The body is in the deepest sleep possible and your consciousness is at its peak. The peak of consciousness and the valley of the body meet.

I went to sleep. It was a very strange sleep. The body was asleep, I was awake. It was so strange — as if one was torn apart into two directions, two dimensions; as if the polarity has become completely focused, as if I was both the polarities together… the positive and negative were meeting, sleep and awareness were meeting, death and life were meeting. That is the moment when you can say ‘the creator and the creation meet.’

It was weird. For the first time it shocks you to the very roots, it shakes your foundations. You can never be the same after that experience; it brings a new vision to your life, a new quality.

Near about twelve my eyes suddenly opened — I had not opened them. The sleep was broken by something else. I felt a great presence around me in the room. It was a very small room. I felt a throbbing life all around me, a great vibration — almost like a hurricane, a great storm of light, joy, ecstasy. I was drowning in it.

It was so tremendously real that everything became unreal. The walls of the room became unreal, the house became unreal, my own body became unreal. Everything was unreal because now there was for the first time reality.

That’s why when Buddha and Shankara say the world is maya, a mirage, it is difficult for us to understand. Because we know only this world, we don’t have any comparison. This is the only reality we know. What are these people talking about — this is maya, illusion? This is the only reality. Unless you come to know the really real, their words cannot be understood, their words remain theoretical. They look like hypotheses. Maybe this man is propounding a philosophy — ‘The world is unreal’.

When Berkley in the West said that the world is unreal, he was walking with one of his friends, a very logical man; the friend was almost a skeptic. He took a stone from the road and hit Berkley’s feet hard. Berkley screamed, blood rushed out, and the skeptic said, ‘Now, the world is unreal? You say the world is unreal? — then why did you scream? This stone is unreal? — then why did you scream? Then why are you holding your leg and why are you showing so much pain and anguish on your face. Stop this? It is all unreal.

Now this type of man cannot understand what Buddha means when he says the world is a mirage. He does not mean that you can pass through the wall. He is not saying this — that you can eat stones and it will make no difference whether you eat bread or stones. He is not saying that.

He is saying that there is a reality. Once you come to know it, this so-called reality simply pales out, simply becomes unreal. With a higher reality in vision the comparison arises, not otherwise.

In the dream; the dream is real. You dream every night. Dream is one of the greatest activities that you go on doing. If you live sixty years, twenty years you will sleep and almost ten years you will dream. Ten years in a life — nothing else do you do so much. Ten years of continuous dreaming — just think about it. And every night…. And every morning you say it was unreal, and again in the night when you dream, dream becomes real.

In a dream it is so difficult to remember that this is a dream. But in the morning it is so easy. What happens? You are the same person. In the dream there is only one reality. How to compare? How to say it is unreal? Compared to what? It is the only reality. Everything is as unreal as everything else so there is no comparison. In the morning when you open your eyes another reality is there. Now you can say it was all unreal. Compared to this reality, dream becomes unreal.

There is an awakening — compared to THAT reality of THAT awakening, this whole reality becomes unreal.

That night for the first time I understood the meaning of the word maya. Not that I had not known the word before, not that I was not aware of the meaning of the word. As you are aware, I was also aware of the meaning — but I had never understood it before. How can you understand without experience?

That night another reality opened its door, another dimension became available. Suddenly it was there, the other reality, the separate reality, the really real, or whatsoever you want to call it — call it god, call it truth, call it dhamma, call it tao, or whatsoever you will. It was nameless. But it was there — so opaque, so transparent, and yet so solid one could have touched it. It was almost suffocating me in that room. It was too much and I was not yet capable of absorbing it.

A deep urge arose in me to rush out of the room, to go under the sky — it was suffocating me. It was too much! It will kill me! If I had remained a few moments more, it would have suffocated me — it looked like that.

I rushed out of the room, came out in the street. A great urge was there just to be under the sky with the stars, with the trees, with the earth… to be with nature. And immediately as I came out, the feeling of being suffocated disappeared. It was too small a place for such a big phenomenon. Even the sky is a small place for that big phenomenon. It is bigger than the sky. Even the sky is not the limit for it. But then I felt more at ease.

I walked towards the nearest garden. It was a totally new walk, as if gravitation had disappeared. I was walking, or I was running, or I was simply flying; it was difficult to decide. There was no gravitation, I was feeling weightless — as if some energy was taking me. I was in the hands of some other energy.

For the first time I was not alone, for the first time I was no more an individual, for the first time the drop has come and fallen into the ocean. Now the whole ocean was mine, I was the ocean. There was no limitation. A tremendous power arose as if I could do anything whatsoever. I was not there, only the power was there.

I reached to the garden where I used to go every day. The garden was closed, closed for the night. It was too late, it was almost one o’clock in the night. The gardeners were fast asleep. I had to enter the garden like a thief, I had to climb the gate. But something was pulling me towards the garden. It was not within my capacity to prevent myself. I was just floating.

That’s what I mean when I say again and again ‘float with the river, don’t push the river’. I was relaxed, I was in a let-go. I was not there. IT was there, call it god — god was there.

I would like to call it IT, because god is too human a word, and has become too dirty by too much use, has become too polluted by so many people. Christians, Hindus, Mohammedans, priests and politicians — they all have corrupted the beauty of the word. So let me call it IT. IT was there and I was just carried away… carried by a tidal wave.

The moment I entered the garden everything became luminous, it was all over the place — the benediction, the blessedness. I could see the trees for the first time — their green, their life, their very sap running. The whole garden was asleep, the trees were asleep. But I could see the whole garden alive, even the small grass leaves were so beautiful.

I looked around. One tree was tremendously luminous — the maulshree tree. It attracted me, it pulled me towards itself. I had not chosen it, god himself has chosen it. I went to the tree, I sat under the tree. As I sat there things started settling. The whole universe became a benediction.

It is difficult to say how long I was in that state. When I went back home it was four o’clock in the morning, so I must have been there by clock time at least three hours — but it was infinity. It had nothing to do with clock time. It was timeless.

Those three hours became the whole eternity, endless eternity. There was no time, there was no passage of time; it was the virgin reality — uncorrupted, untouchable, unmeasurable.

And that day something happened that has continued — not as a continuity — but it has still continued as an undercurrent. Not as a permanency — each moment it has been happening again and again. It has been a miracle each moment.

That night… and since that night I have never been in the body. I am hovering around it. I became tremendously powerful and at the same time very fragile. I became very strong, but that strength is not the strength of a Mohammed Ali. That strength is not the strength of a rock, that strength is the strength of a rose flower — so fragile in his strength… so fragile, so sensitive, so delicate.

The rock will be there, the flower can go any moment, but still the flower is stronger than the rock because it is more alive. Or, the strength of a dewdrop on a leaf of grass just shining; in the morning sun — so beautiful, so precious, and yet can slip any moment. So incomparable in its grace, but a small breeze can come and the dewdrop can slip and be lost forever.

Buddhas have a strength which is not of this world. Their strength is totally of love… Like a rose flower or a dewdrop. Their strength is very fragile, vulnerable. Their strength is the strength of life not of death. Their power is not of that which kills; their power is of that which creates. Their power is not of violence, aggression; their power is that of compassion.

But I have never been in the body again, I am just hovering around the body. And that’s why I say it has been a tremendous miracle. Each moment I am surprised I am still here, I should not be. I should have left any moment, still I am here. Every morning I open my eyes and I say, ‘So, again I am still here?’ Because it seems almost impossible. The miracle has been a continuity.

Just the other day somebody asked a question — ‘Osho, you are getting so fragile and delicate and so sensitive to the smells of hair oils and shampoos that it seems we will not be able to see you unless we all go bald.’ By the way, nothing is wrong with being bald — bald is beautiful. Just as ‘black is beautiful’, so ‘bald is beautiful’. But that is true and you have to be careful about it.

I am fragile, delicate and sensitive. That is my strength. If you throw a rock at a flower nothing will happen to the rock, the flower will be gone. But still you cannot say that the rock is more powerful than the flower. The flower will be gone because the flower was alive. And the rock — nothing will happen to it because it is dead. The flower will be gone because the flower has no strength to destroy. The flower will simply disappear and give way to the rock. The rock has a power to destroy because the rock is dead.

Remember, since that day I have never been in the body really; just a delicate thread joins me with the body. And I am continuously surprised that somehow the whole must be willing me to be here, because I am no more here with my own strength, I am no more here on my own. It must be the will of the whole to keep me here, to allow me to linger a little more on this shore. Maybe the whole wants to share something with you through me.

Since that day the world is unreal. Another world has been revealed. When I say the world is unreal I don’t mean that these trees are unreal. These trees are absolutely real — but the way you see these trees is unreal. These trees are not unreal in themselves — they exist in god, they exist in absolute reality — but the way you see them you never see them; you are seeing something else, a mirage.

You create your own dream around you and unless you become awake you will continue to dream. The world is unreal because the world that you know is the world of your dreams. When dreams drop and you simply encounter the world that is there, then the real world.

There are not two things, god and the world. God is the world if you have eyes, clear eyes, without any dreams, without any dust of the dreams, without any haze of sleep; if you have clear eyes, clarity, perceptiveness, there is only god.

Then somewhere god is a green tree, and somewhere else god is a shining star, and somewhere else god is a cuckoo, and somewhere else god is a flower, and somewhere else a child and somewhere else a river — then only god is. The moment you start seeing, only god is.

But right now whatsoever you see is not the truth, it is a projected lie. That is the meaning of a mirage. And once you see, even for a single split moment, if you can see, if you can allow yourself to see, you will find immense benediction present all over, everywhere — in the clouds, in the sun, on the earth.

This is a beautiful world. But I am not talking about your world, I am talking about my world. Your world is very ugly, your world is your world created by a self, your world is a projected world. You are using the real world as a screen and projecting your own ideas on it.

When I say the world is real, the world is tremendously beautiful, the world is luminous with infinity, the world is light and delight, it is a celebration, I mean my world — or your world if you drop your dreams.

When you drop your dreams you see the same world as any Buddha has ever seen. When you dream you dream privately. Have you watched it? — that dreams are private. You cannot share them even with your beloved. You cannot invite your wife to your dream — or your husband, or your friend. You cannot say, ‘Now, please come tonight in my dream. I would like to see the dream together.’ It is not possible. Dream is a private thing, hence it is illusory, it has no objective reality.

God is a universal thing. Once you come out of your private dreams, it is there. It has been always there. Once your eyes are clear, a sudden illumination — suddenly you are overflooded with beauty, grandeur and grace. That is the goal, that is the destiny.

Let me repeat. Without effort you will never reach it, with effort nobody has ever reached it. You will need great effort, and only then there comes a moment.when effort becomes futile. But it becomes futile only when you have come to the very peak of it, never before it. When you have come to the very pinnacle of your effort — all that you can do you have done — then suddenly there is no need to do anything any more. You drop the effort.

But nobody can drop it in the middle, it can be dropped only at the extreme end. So go to the extreme end if you want to drop it. Hence I go on insisting: make as much effort as you can, put your whole energy and total heart in it, so that one day you can see — now effort is not going to lead me anywhere. And that day it will not be you who will drop the effort, it drops on its own accord. And when it drops on its own accord, meditation happens.

Meditation is not a result of your efforts, meditation is a happening. When your efforts drop, suddenly meditation is there… the benediction of it, the blessedness of it, the glory of it. It is there like a presence… luminous, surrounding you and surrounding everything. It fills the whole earth and the whole sky.

That meditation cannot be created by human effort. Human effort is too limited. That blessedness is so infinite. You cannot manipulate it. It can happen only when you are in a tremendous surrender. When you are not there only then it can happen. When you are a no-self — no desire, not going anywhere — when you are just herenow, not doing anything in particular, just being, it happens. And it comes in waves and the waves become tidal. It comes like a storm, and takes you away into a totally new reality.

But first you have to do all that you can do, and then you have to learn non-doing. The doing of the non-doing is the greatest doing, and the effort of effortlessness is the greatest effort.

Your meditation that you create by chanting a mantra or by sitting quiet and still and forcing yourself, is a very mediocre meditation. It is created by you, it cannot be bigger than you. It is homemade, and the maker is always bigger than the made. You have made it by sitting, forcing in a yoga posture, chanting ‘rama, rama, rama’ or anything — ‘blah, blah, blah’ — anything. You have forced the mind to become still.

It is a forced stillness. It is not that quiet that comes when you are not there. It is not that silence which comes when you are almost non-existential. It is not that beautitude which descends on you like a dove.

It is said when Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist in the Jordan River, god descended in him, or the holy ghost descended in him like a dove. Yes, that is exactly so. When you are not there peace descends in you… fluttering like a dove… reaches in your heart and abides there and abides there forever.

You are your undoing, you are the barrier. Meditation is when the meditator is not. When the mind ceases with all its activities — seeing that they are futile — then the unknown penetrates you, overwhelms you.

The mind must cease for god to be. Knowledge must cease for knowing to be. You must disappear, you must give way. You must become empty, then only you can be full.

That night I became empty and became full. I became non-existential and became existence. That night I died and was reborn. But the one that was reborn has nothing to do with that which died, it is a discontinuous thing. On the surface it looks continuous but it is discontinuous. The one who died, died totally; nothing of him has remained.

Believe me, nothing of him has remained, not even a shadow. It died totally, utterly. It is not that I am just a modified RUP, transformed, modified form, transformed form of the old. No, there has been no continuity. That day of March twenty-first, the person who had lived for many many lives, for millennia, simply died. Another being, absolutely new, not connected at all with the old, started to exist.

Religion just gives you a total death. Maybe that’s why the whole day previous to that happening I was feeling some urgency like death, as if I am going to die — and I really died. I have known many other deaths but they were nothing compared to it, they were partial deaths.

Sometimes the body died, sometimes a part of the mind died, sometimes a part of the ego died, but as far as the person was concerned, it remained. Renovated many times, decorated many times, changed a little bit here and there, but it remained, the continuity remained.

That night the death was total. It was a date with death and god simultaneously.