“It is not a question of following me; the real question is of following your own light,” says Osho.
I am nobody’s leader; I am just living my life, doing my thing. And the people who enjoy being with me, they are welcome. It is a friendship. We are fellow travelers. Maybe there is a little difference: I am awake, they are asleep – so what? I was asleep, now I am awake. They are asleep, tomorrow they will be awake. Their very sleep proves only one thing, that they have the capacity to be awake.
And I don’t disturb anybody’s sleep prematurely! When I see the person is going to wake up anyhow, then I just give him a little nudge. I don’t nag people, I don’t go on nagging them, “Wake up! Wake up!” because if you nag a sleepy person to wake up too much, he may start dreaming that he has awakened. That is a difficulty…because the mind can create all kinds of dreams. It can even create the dream that one is awakened, that one is enlightened. And even here it happens to a few people.
Now Siddhartha is here from Germany; it is happening to him. In his dream he has become enlightened – or approximately. And, be aware, when a German becomes enlightened, then he becomes perfectly enlightened!
Just a few days ago I was talking about Proper Sagar, the perfect Englishman. Somebody has asked me, “Do you know why he is perfect?” I know, but I cannot tell you because he will feel very offended, very offended. He is such a perfect Englishman that if I tell you the truth he will be very offended. If you promise me not to tell anybody, then I can share it: he is really a German pretending to be an Englishman. No Englishman can defeat him! There are hundreds of Englishmen here – has anybody the guts to defeat Proper Sagar? Impossible! When a German tries to be anybody he is always perfect. To be German means to be perfect – they are synonymous.
So it is happening in Germany: Siddhartha is dreaming that he has become enlightened. And I go on playing jokes: I have given him one of my chairs and one of my robes! So with my robe on he sits in the chair – and being a German he is very methodical: on one side sits a woman who is Mukta; on the other side are two women, one who is Vivek, the other Laxmi. And in front of Laxmi is a man who is Shiva. Germans do things perfectly!
Another German, Gunakar, is here. Siddhartha is very simple, a nice guy, but Gunakar is an advocate, a great legal expert, so he is going about it more methodically, more legally. Now he has closed himself in a room…just the way I live in a room he lives in a room; he does not come out, he does not write…. He has a secretary – a woman, of course. He does not allow anybody to touch his body.
The reason people are prevented from touching my feet has nothing to do with enlightenment – it is just that my toes are in difficulty. To touch my toes hurts them badly, so people have to be prevented. Gunakar must have seen that nobody is allowed to touch my feet anymore, so he is preventing people from touching him “because his energy gets disturbed”! And both of them are here!
So if you try to wake up people in their sleep, the great danger is that they may wake up, but not really, only in sleep; they may dream that they are awake and in their dreams they may start playing all kinds of games of enlightenment, spirituality, religiousness. One has to be very aware not to disturb anybody before the right time.
So I persuade you, I seduce you towards awakening. But I am not in a hurry – it cannot be done in a hurry. I have to wait, and when I see that you are just coming out of your sleep, only then a little shaking helps and you are fully awake. Even if you are not shaken up at the last moment, you may awaken. It may be a little later; it is just a question of time. The master has to be watchful not to be in a hurry, because sometimes it happens that you see people in misery and you would like to help them immediately, but to help them immediately may harm them more if they are not ready to wake up.
So my people are not my followers, they are just my friends, my lovers – they have fallen in love with me. And as you know, love is blind; it is not a logical thing, so how can they convince you? They have not connected themselves with me through logic; it has been an illogical jump. They can only share their joy with you, and if that brings you here it is good.
And certainly my sannyasins will tell you not to follow me, because that’s exactly what my teaching is: not to follow me. Each individual is unique; nobody has to become an imitator. And they will discourage you from adopting the way I am preaching – they will discourage you so that you can find yourself. Otherwise, people are very willing to believe. Belief is so cheap; it costs nothing to believe.
My people will discourage you from believing, from following, from adopting the way I am teaching. If you become interested you have to come here and explore yourself. It is an exploration. It is an adventure into the unknown. It is going beyond the familiar, beyond that which can be comprehended, beyond that which the mind can cope with. It is a journey into the beyond. It is very delicate, far more delicate than the petals of a rose. You can destroy it very easily; any coercive effort and it is destroyed. So they bring you here without any coercion, without any logic. They only invite you, and that too not directly – very indirectly. And they will discourage you from following me, because it is not a question of following me; the real question is of following your own light.
All that I can do is to help you find the way that reaches to your own innermost light. I can show you the way. And when you have found your light you will have to live your own life. It will not be as a Christian, it will not be as a Hindu, it will not be Mohammedan; it will simply be your life, nobody else’s.
Osho, Come, Come, Yet Again Come, Ch 13, Q 1 (excerpt)