A thief who plays the flute beautifully

1001 Tales Discourses

“Difficult not to choose, but try – and in everything… When you feel hate, try to move to the middle. When you feel love, try to move to the middle,” states Osho.

You choose easily; you condemn, appreciate easily; you reject, accept easily. You say, “This is good, that is wrong,” easily, because this has become a habit for millions of lives, you have always been choosing. This is just a robotlike phenomenon.

Without any awareness, the moment you see something, you have decided and judged. A flower is there; you look and you say, “Beautiful,” or, “Not beautiful.” Immediate judgment comes – with the perception, judgment comes – then you will never be able to remain in the middle.

Somebody came to Chuang Tzu and he talked about a man in town and said, “He is a sinner, a very bad man, a thief,” and condemned him in many many ways.

Chuang Tzu listened and said, “But he plays the flute beautifully.”

Then came another man, and the first was sitting there, and the other said, “This man in the town is really a beautiful flute-player.”

Chuang Tzu said, “But he is a thief.”

Both were present, so they said, “What do you mean?”

Chuang Tzu said, “Just balancing – and who am I to judge? He is a thief, he is a good flute-player. For me there is no rejection, no acceptance. For me there is no choice. He is whatsoever he is. Who am I to judge or choose this extreme or that? For me he is neither good nor bad. He is himself and that is HIS business. Who am I here to say anything? I had to say something just to balance you both.”

Difficult not to choose, but try – and in everything… When you feel hate, try to move to the middle. When you feel love, try to move to the middle. Whatsoever you feel, try to move to the middle. And you will be surprised that there is a point between every two extremes where both cease to exist – when neither do you feel hate nor do you feel love. This is what Buddha called upeksha, indifference. Indifference is not the right word.

Upeksha means such a middle point from where you are neither this nor that. You cannot say, “I love,” you cannot say, “I hate.” You simply cannot say anything, you are simply in the middle. You are not identified. A transcendence happens, and transcendence is the flowering. That is the maturity to be attained, that is the goal.

Osho, Hsin Hsin Ming: The Book of Nothing – Discourses on the Faith Mind of Sosan, Ch 2, (excerpt)


Series compiled by Shanti
All excerpts of this series can be found in: 1001 Tales

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