Thief of love: the river


From Suha’s series ‘Beware: Slippery…. Sacred Ground – Small flashes of real life’. “Once I used to ask myself what I wanted and where I wanted to go. … Then I understood that everything is already given to me, even before I become aware of my needs.”

River Seine with Eiffel Tower - Pinterest

Strangely, things often happen to me when I’m moving from one country to another. Last month, while walking on a bridge across the Seine on my way to catch the Paris-Milan train, I was struck by the clear, liquid harmony of the water as it flowed peacefully, held together by its banks. “Look at me and listen to me”, it whispered.

The water’s mysterious current keeps the river anchored to the ground and turns it into a mirror of the constantly changing sky. Earth, water and sky moving in unison, in a synchronised dance. The banks sometimes narrow down, it is true, but they also widen to receive new tributaries, new directions of life.

Locks may stop the river’s flow, and you must know how to cross them, but while you are waiting, there is a view to be explored. The landscapes that follow one another on both sides make the river a spectator to the variety of all existing things.

Does this river wonder where it is going? Does it decide the direction to be taken? Its banks are its helm. It flows and waits, waits and flows – confidently, because something new is already happening: the flow and the never-ending renewal.

Doesn’t my existence flow in the same way, protected and guided? What else can I decide to do, other than let myself be carried by the steady, moving, eternal flow of life?

It has not been always this way. Once I used to ask myself what I wanted and where I wanted to go. And it was a disaster, because for decades I felt the distress of not knowing the answer.

Then I understood that everything is already given to me, even before I become aware of my needs. “Oh, that’s how it is, that’s just what was missing!” And I catch myself repeating a little poem: “In fair or foul / in high or low / inside out or outside in / on the bias or on the slant / if it goes right or if it goes wrong…

But what has happened to make me see life as I see it today? What is it that makes me no longer afraid to not know who I am or where I’m going?

I know, I know…. Out of love for Osho I have become a thief. I have appropriated his vision by watching and listening to him; from him I have stolen boundless, unconditional love for existence, whether you call it a riverbank, the universe or something greater than me.

This love gave me eyes to see that there is garbage in my river bed. But how to get rid of it? I learnt that to clean the rubbish I had thrown into it, to cut the lianas from other tributaries that had got entangled in it, I just have to float, to go playfully with the stream and allow the river to do the job of cleaning for me. That way I will feel sure that sooner or later my river will reach the ocean without my having to even worry about it.

And in the meantime, the river of my life takes shape thanks to its banks: my body, which is my best friend; my country; the family in which I was born; and all the tributaries that are still enriching its course. Life is the two banks – precious gateways to inner life – and my river still has the pleasure and joy of flowing, invisibly anchored to a deep mystery.

Thanks to what I have understood with Osho, my life is taking on, not a meaning, but a feeling of wholeness that defies any type of isolation or separation. As I move, everything moves in me; as I keep still, everything rests in me. It makes no difference whether I act or not, and I realise that movement and quiet can coexist. It makes no difference whether I know where I’m going. Life is as it is. I am as I am: a river called Suha that is happy to flow. And that’s that.

First published in Osho Times – translated from Italian by Marta Innocenti

Amrita SuhaSuha is a regular contributor

More articles and poems by this author in Osho News

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