Heraclitus’ saying

1001 Tales told by the Master Discourses

Osho states, “You cannot enter into the same river even once!”

Child stepping into water

I remember old Heraclitus, whose statement has not been taken very seriously in the Greek tradition of philosophy because he goes against the whole trend. He is unique and alone.

He says, “You cannot step in the same river twice,” because the river is constantly flowing.

If I ever meet Heraclitus – and I think I am going to meet him some day, because in this eternity people are bound to stumble again and again on the old fellows – I am going to tell him, “Change your statement. It was great when you made it, but it has a flaw in it. You say, ‘You cannot step in the same river twice.’ I want you to say, ‘You cannot step in the same river even once’ – because even while you are stepping in, the river is flowing.

When your foot touches the surface, the water underneath is flowing; when your foot is in the middle, the waters above and below it are flowing; when you reach the bottom, everything above it is flowing… you cannot enter into the same river even once!”

And such is the nature of life. Everything goes on renewing itself; only mind is a dead thing, it remains the same. Hence mind has no resonance with life. If the mind is Christian or Hindu or Mohammedan it is fixed, it is a fossil, it is dead. It cannot live in the present; it is still searching for answers in the ashes of the burned bodies which do not have any life any more.

The golden gate is available only for those who are always alive to the new, and who are open – and joyfully, not reluctantly – who are happy to drop the past and remain unburdened.

Osho, The Great Zen Master Ta Hui, Ch 37 (excerpt)

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

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