In the eighth part of a series of 10, Osho continues to answer a question from part 7 on ‘shaktipat’ and grace: “…the final happening of grace will take place when there is no one in between.”
Now suppose I reach the seventh plane: I would know that I have attained the void, but what about you? You will look upon me as a person, and this notion of an individual will become the final veil. You can only get rid of this conception when the happening occurs through the formless. In other words, then you cannot point out from where and how the happening took place. When you will be unable to find the source this notion will drop. The happening must be sourceless. If sunrays are coming you will think that the sun is a person. But when a ray comes from nowhere, when the rain falls without any cloud, then the final veil that is formed by personification falls.
As you continue on, the distances will become more and more subtle, and the final happening of grace will take place when there is no one in between. Your very thought that there is someone in between is barrier enough. As long as there are two, there is a lot of obstruction: you are there and the other is there. Even when the other is no more, you are, and because you are, the other’s presence is also felt. The grace which descends without any source, without any origin anywhere, will be the best. The individual in you will flow away in this grace that comes from the void. If another person is present he serves the purpose of saving your individuality despite the fact that he is working for you.
If you go to the seashore you experience greater peace, if you go to the forest you experience greater peace, because the other is not present there and so your ‘I’ remains firm and strong. If two men sit in a room, there are waves and counter waves of tension there, even though these two may not be fighting or quarrelling or even talking. So even when they are silent the ‘I’ of each is constantly working. Aggression and defence are there in full swing. These things can go on silently also and there is no need for a direct encounter. The mere presence of two people, and a room is filled with tension.
If you were to gain full knowledge of all the currents that come out from you, you would see clearly that a room containing two persons has been divided into two and each individual has become a centre. The energy vibrations from both stand facing each other like armies on a battlefield. The presence of the other strengthens your ‘I’. When the other leaves, the room will become a different place altogether. You relax. The ‘I’ that was on edge will let itself go. It now leans against the cushion and rests, it now breathes freely because the other is not there. Hence, the significance of solitude is to relax your ego and to help it to let go. It is for this reason that you are more at ease near a tree than in the company of another person.
This is why, in countries where tensions between man and man are becoming deeper, people tend to live with pets. It is easier to live with animals than with men, because they have no ‘I’. Tie a collar to a dog, and he goes about happily. We cannot tie a collar to a man in this way, though we try very hard. The wife ties the husband, the husband the wife, and they both go about happily – but these collars are subtle and cannot be seen openly. Yet each tries to shake off the collar and be free – but the dog walks happily along wagging his tail. So the pleasure the dog gives no other man can give, because another man at once brings your ego to your attention, and then the trouble starts.
Gradually, man tries to break his relationship with others and establish relationships with objects because they are easier to handle. So the bulk of objects is increasing day by day. There are more articles in the house than people. People bring disorder and confusion; objects give no bother. The chair remains where I place it. If I sit on it, it creates no trouble. The presence of trees, rivers, mountains, is not troublesome; therefore, we feel at peace near them. The reason is only this: the ‘I’ is not standing in full strength before us; therefore, we too feel relaxed. When the other is not there, where is the need for the ‘I’? Then the ‘I’ too is not. But the slightest inkling of the other, and the ‘I’ jumps to attention. It is worried about its security, about its lack of information as to what the next moment may bring; hence, it has to be ready all the time.
The ego always remains alert until the very last moment. Even if you meet a person of the seventh plane, the ego is alert. Sometimes it becomes excessively alert before such a person. You are not so much afraid of the ordinary man, because even if he hurts you the injury is not very deep. But a man who has reached the fifth body or beyond can inflict deep surgery that reaches up to the same body of yours that he has reached. Thus, your fear becomes more, because “God knows what he might do.” You begin to feel something unknown as if unfamiliar forces are watching at you through him, so you become wary. You see an abyss all around him. You become alert and on guard. You begin to feel the experience of the deep valley, and you are caught by the fear that if you go within him you will fall into this abyss.
That is why when men like Jesus, Krishna and Socrates are born we kill them: their very presence causes great confusion among us. To go near them is to go wilfully near danger. Then when they die we worship them because now there is no fear. Now we can cast their image into gold and stand with folded hands before them, calling them our beloved master. But in their lifetime we treat them differently. Then we are very much afraid of them and this fear is of that which is unknown to us: you do not know for certain what is the matter. The deeper a man goes within himself, the more he becomes like an abyss to us. Then it is just like when someone is afraid to look down into a valley because it makes his head reel. Similarly, to look into the eyes of such a person will also create fear: our heads are sure to reel.
There is a beautiful story about Moses. After Hazrat Moses had the vision of God, he never kept his face uncovered. All his life he went about with a veil drawn over his face, because to look at his face became dangerous. Whosoever did so escaped. There was an infinite abyss in his eyes. So Moses moved about with his face covered because people were frightened of his eyes. His eyes seemed to draw them like a magnet towards that unknown abyss within. They became struck with fear because they did not know where his eyes would take them and what would happen to them.
The man who has reached the seventh and the last plane also exists so far as you are concerned, but you will try to protect yourself from him and a barrier will remain in between. Therefore, shaktipat in this case also cannot be pure. It can be pure if you give up the thought of such a one being a person – but this can only happen when your ‘I’ is lost. When you reach the stage where you are completely unaware of the ego, you will be able to obtain shaktipat from anywhere, because then there is no question of its coming from anybody; it will have become sourceless, it will have become grace.
The greater the crowd, the harder and more condensed is your ego. Therefore, it has long been a practice to get out of the crowd and try to drop the ego in solitude. But man is strange: if he stays under a tree for long he will begin to talk to it and address it as ‘you’. If he stays near the ocean he will do the same. The ‘I’ in us will go to any length to keep itself alive. It will create the other no matter where you go, and it will establish sentimental relationship even with inanimate objects and will begin to look upon them as individuals.
When a person approaches the last stage he makes God the other so that he can save his ‘I’. Therefore, the devotee always says, “How can we be one with God? He is he and we are we. We are at his feet, and he is God.” The devotee is saying nothing but this, that if you want to be one with him you will have to lose your ego. So he keeps God at a distance and he begins to rationalize. He says, “How can we be one with him? He is great, he is absolute. We are wretched outcasts so how can we be one with him?” The devotee is saving the ‘thou’ in order to save his ‘I’. Therefore, the bhakta, the devotee, never rises above the fourth plane. He does not even go up to the fifth plane: he gets stuck at the fourth. Instead of imagination, on the fourth plane visions come to him. He discovers all the best possibilities of the fourth body. So many happenings take place in a devotee’s life that are miraculous, but the bhakta remains on the fourth plane all the same.
The atma sadhak – one who is searching for the self – the hatha yogi – the yogi who goes through austerities – and many others who undergo similar practices, reach the fifth plane at the most. Such a sadhak’s intrinsic desire is to attain bliss, to attain liberation and freedom from suffering. Behind all of these desires stands the ‘I’: he says, “I want liberation” – not liberation from the ‘I’, but liberation of the ‘I’. He says, “I want to be free, I want beatitude.” His ‘I’ stands condensed, so he only reaches to the fifth plane.
The raja yogi reaches up to the sixth plane. He says, “What is there in the ‘I’? I am nothing; he alone is – not I, but he, the Brahman, is everything.” He is ready to lose the ego but he is not prepared to lose his being. He says, “I shall remain as part of the Brahman; I am one with him. I am the Brahman. I shall let myself go, but my inner being within me will remain merged in him.” Such a seeker can go up to the sixth body.
A meditator like Buddha reaches the seventh plane because he is ready to give up all – even the Brahman. He is ready to lose himself and lose everything. He says, “Let what is remain. On my part I do not desire anything to remain: I am ready to lose my all.” He who is prepared to lose everything is entitled to gain all.
The nirvanic body is attained only when we are prepared to be nothing. Then there is a readiness to know even death. For knowing life many are ready. Therefore, he who wants to know life will stop at the sixth plane. But he who is ready to investigate death also will be able to know the seventh plane.
Osho, In Search of the Miraculous, Vol 2, Ch 4 (translated from Hindi)
Read the whole discourse: Seven Chakras