Earth, Water, Fire, Air, and Space

Remembering Here&Now

Ageh Bharti recalls painter Kamta Sagar visiting Osho and showing him a series of his paintings.

Five elements of nature

At some time in the early 1970s in Jabalpur, Kishori Raman Tondon, the editor of the domestic magazine, Parag, which was published in Mumbai, and I were with Osho when a young artist, called Kamta Sagar, arrived. He had brought with him five paintings to show to Osho; he had painted each of the five elements on canvas – Earth, Water, Fire, Air, and Space.

Osho observed the paintings for a while and commented, “Three of your paintings are very good – Earth, Water and Space. But you have to give some thought again to Fire and Air. Why have you painted Fire so dull?” (The colours he had used were light yellow/orange.)

Kamta Sagar explained, “Acharya ji, in fact even in fire I do not see the destructive form. I see also motherly affection in fire.”

Osho asserted: “Fire will not change according to your feelings. You do not want to see fire as it is. You see it as you want it to be. But the fiery element in the fire is its beauty, the intense flame, the burning. The beauty of fire is in its being fiery, in its being fierce. Moreover, fire is a great power. In its absence, no one can survive. If the sun turns cold for a moment, who can survive? Inside our body also, it is the fire that keeps us alive. As our fire goes on becoming dull, we draw closer and closer to death. Without fire, living is impossible even for a moment. But it is its nature to be fiery. Therefore, it is its beauty being fierce, violent, and intensely burning. The same is its glory. Without that, it is not fire at all. If you do not keep all five paintings together, by looking at it, nobody can recognize it as fire. So you have to think it over again. And why have you painted the air? Does air have any colour?”

Kamta Sagar explained, “That’s why it is painted in very light blue.”

Osho commented, “But the air has no colour.”

Then Osho suggested, “In fact, air cannot be painted directly. For that, something should be done indirectly, by which it will indicate that the wind is blowing. For instance, paint some trees whose branches are bending down, swaying back and forth. By seeing them, it appears that the wind is blowing. As I see, air cannot be painted directly. The other three paintings are beautiful.”

Kamta Sagar replied, “I will paint Air and Fire again.”

Osho said, “You need to do it again, then only will it be perfect.”

Note by Ageh Bharti: In those days, I could not even think that Osho could comment so sagaciously even on paintings. Later, in Pune, I saw very beautiful, incomparable paintings by Osho himself, that carry infinite depth in them.

Note by Osho News: Shri Kamta Sagar became a renowned painter and was the President of the Madhya Pradesh Artists Forum. He died in October 2017 in Jabalpur.

Edited version as told in the book by Ageh Bharti, ‘Blessed Days with Osho’.

Related article on Osho News:  Osho in Jabalpur

Ageh Bharti

Ageh Bharti is a regular contributor and the author of Blessed Days with Osho

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