I have been observing that whenever press people come to the ashram they are always looking for something negative – sex, money, etcetera, etcetera. Can’t they see what is happening here?
They can see. They see it but they can’t report it. You have to understand. The people who read the newspapers and the magazines are constantly searching for the negative, they are looking for the negative. To them, good news is no news. Only the bad news is news, only the negative has appeal for them. If somebody murders it is news, if somebody rapes it is news.
George Bernard Shaw used to say that when a dog bites a man it is not news, but when a man bites a dog it is news. Something unusual, something that should not be, has to be reported. Only then are people thrilled. People live on negativity. And the consumer decides; because he purchases, his needs have to be fulfilled.
The people who read the newspapers are sexually repressed; they are hankering for something sexual. That is a vicarious satisfaction but they are hankering for it. People are interested in money – their whole interest is in money, money is their god. So when the newspaper people come here, that is natural; they will only be looking for something negative. And if they can find it… and you can always find it; whatsoever you search for, you will find.
The rosebush has thorns too, and they only look for the thorns. And not only that, they magnify the thorns – because they have to make stories out of it. They simply don’t talk about the flower. Nobody is interested in the flower.
You can see – all your novels, all your stories, all your poetries, all your fiction, all your movies, they have the same theme: Sex and Violence, Sex and Death. These are the two taboos in the world; man has not been able to accept sex and death. And because man has rejected them they take revenge and they come from all sides – they are echoed and re-echoed and they go on falling on man. Whatsoever is rejected will come and knock at your doors.
So don’t be angry at the press people. They simply serve a certain need of the neurotic masses. They don’t come here to report about meditation – who is interested in meditation? They don’t come here to report about inner growth – who is interested in inner growth? They come here to find something that they can report to their readers which the readers will feel is news.
I have heard:
An author who had been well established for a number of years brought a manuscript to his agent. After a month or so, the agent returned the manuscript to him saying ‘Jim, I’m sorry. I hate to tell you this but your stuff is now over the hill. Just too damn old-fashioned. Not enough zip in it. People nowadays only want to read something with sex in it. You gotta dish it out straight, and in large portions.’
‘Okay,’ replied the writer ‘I’ll try it! See you in a month.’
Five weeks later, the writer came back with a new manuscript. The agent read a few paragraphs, handed it back, and said ‘Jim, I’m sorry, but you don’t have a chance with a thing like this.’
‘What!’ cried the author. ‘Why, there’s six fucks on the first page alone!’
‘Yeah, I know,’ replied the agent. ‘But in order to get to those you’ve gotta read halfway down the page.’
Nobody is patient enough even for that. Who bothers to read half the page? It has to be exactly in the title, otherwise nobody is interested. This simply shows a very very neurotic state of human mind. It has nothing to do with the press people, it has to do with humanity at large. Man’s interest is morbid.
There was once another writer who submitted to ‘The Readers Digest’ a story that was titled ‘The Day I Met a Grizzly Bear in the Great North Woods.’
‘Good story’ said the editors of the magazine ‘but the title needs more juice.’
So the writer tried again. This time he titled the story ‘How My Life Was Changed the Day I Met a Grizzly Bear in the Great North Woods.’ ‘You’re on the right track’ replied the editors. ‘Give it another try.’
The exasperated writer then wrote ‘How I Found God the Day I Met a Grizzly Bear in the Great North Woods.’
But the editors still were not satisfied and the story remained unpublished until the writer submitted it again a few weeks later under the title ‘The Day I Fucked a Grizzly Bear and I Found God in the Great North Woods.’
It simply shows the utterly neurotic state of humanity. Don’t be angry with those poor press people – help them to find something negative. Make them happy and make their readers happy.
Osho, The Revolution, Ch 6, Q 4