Just a slight push into the sky

Discourses Osho on Gratitude

Beloved Osho, It seems that masters have always been betrayed by their chief disciple. The same has happened to you, with those to whom you have given so much love and attention, and on whom you have worked so hard.

Osho, is it that people who have more potential go higher and then can fall even lower than the ordinary human being? You have been harassed by the police and the bureaucracy. I feel they are not doing right, but they can’t do otherwise; but when I hear about old sannyasins’ behavior, my heart cries and it hurts me deeply.

Osho 43

The sannyasins I have worked harder on are not the ones who have the best potential – they were the worst; hence they needed hard work. Those who are the best I have not worked on at all. Just my presence has been enough for them, just my love has been enough for them.

So it is not that I worked hard on them because they had more potential to go high, and then to fall even below the ordinary. I worked on them because they had no possibility to go high. Even with hard work, at the most I could bring them to the normal. And they are behaving normally – I am not disappointed in them.

Whenever a person of higher potential has come to me, he has received my love, but there has been no need to work on him. He needs just a slight push, and he will be flying in the sky. None of those people have fallen, or will fall down, because one who has known the freedom of the sky cannot go back to the state where he was not even aware of his wings, and he cannot be disgraceful towards the master who helped him. It is impossible, simply impossible.

His gratitude will grow more and more because the master has not only made him aware of his wings but has pushed him into the sky and has given him total freedom.

How can you be ungrateful to a person who has given you total freedom to be yourself, who has not tried in any way to impose any image, any ideal on you?

Most of the sannyasins are feeling more loving than ever, more grateful than ever – and it is really a time of difficulties, when your mettle is tested.

Those who have fallen from grace were expected to. They never reached to the point where they could open their wings. If they are not grateful towards me, the simple reason is that they have not experienced anything that would make them grateful towards me. They have remained closed in their own darkness, in their own ego.

Vivek goes on asking me again and again, “Why don’t you work on me?” And it is difficult to explain that there is no need of any work on her. She has to work for me, and in that work, in that care, she is growing, she is maturing. It is a very complicated situation. I have to choose to work on the worst; they need the attention. Even if they can grow a little bit it will be good. I don’t hope that they will become enlightened. Even with hard work they will not become enlightened, because the work on the worst people has a difficulty: they fight with you. While working on them, they are continually fighting you! On each single step they don’t want to grow; you are doing something against them. With the best quality people it is different. They want to grow.

You need not do any hard work. Just looking in their eyes is enough, just being with them is enough; it is nourishment. It is nourishment to open their wings – and they will be grateful.

The people on whom one has to work hard are not going to be grateful; they will be revengeful, because you were working against them. They never wanted to fly.

I remember an old story of a man who loved freedom immensely, who had made his country free from foreign rule, but was so much in love with freedom that he would not take the reins of the government in his own hands. Once the country became free, he left the country towards the mountains. He said, “My work is done.”

The last stop was a caravanserai. It had a beautiful parrot, and the owner of the serai was also in love with the idea of freedom. If he had really been a lover of freedom he would have made the parrot free, but the parrot was in a golden cage. His idea of freedom was just a mental luxury. Because he loved freedom so much – just the idea – he had taught the parrot to repeat the word, “Freedom, freedom, freedom.” The whole day, the parrot would suddenly burst into shouting, “Freedom, freedom!” He knew only one word. And this man who had fought for the freedom of his country, had been in jails, had been in dangers, he was staying there.

He thought, “This poor parrot wants freedom. He is not happy in this golden cage, nobody listens to him. The whole day he is shouting ‘Freedom!'” He decided that in the night he would open the cage and let him be free, so in the middle of the night he came to the cage, opened the door of the cage, and tried to pull out the parrot. But the parrot was hitting the man with his beak, and with one of his legs he was holding onto the cage.

The man could not understand: the door was open, and he was still shouting, “Freedom!” But the man was also a strong fighter for freedom; he somehow pulled the parrot out of the cage and threw it into the sky. He had damaged both of his hands; there was blood on both of his hands where the parrot had scratched. But he was happy that the poor parrot who longed so much for freedom was at last free. He went to his room, went to sleep, but in the morning he woke up with the sound of the parrot who was shouting, “Freedom!”

He said, “Strange! Where is the parrot?” He opened the window: the parrot was sitting in the cage and the door was open, and he was repeating his routine: “Freedom… freedom!” It was just a word.

The owner came out; he knew this famous man. He looked at his hands, he looked at the open cage. He said, “You don’t understand, he is only a parrot. I have taught him the word ‘freedom’ because I like the idea of freedom. He is a parrot; he does not even know the meaning of freedom. You should not have unnecessarily tried and got harmed. A few other people have tried it before, but he always comes back. Who wants to leave the golden cage?

“As far as I am concerned, it is only an idea; otherwise I would have thrown him out of the cage and removed the cage. But I love to hear the word ‘freedom’. It is my idea; I don’t want to do anything about it, it is simply philosophical – neither does the parrot want to do anything about it. For him it is not even philosophical, for him it is simply a recording, memory… not even mind. You are a man who has sacrificed his whole life for freedom. You are in a different category. You should not have bothered about this parrot – he is an idiot. It is just that he has learned the word.”

The sannyasins who think they have betrayed me…. They have not betrayed me: they have betrayed themselves. How can they betray me? I had no involvement of any kind. I was not in any way expecting anything from them. I worked because I enjoyed, loved it.

They cannot betray me, they can only betray themselves. It does not affect me, it will only affect their lives. They will get again into their cages and start shouting, “Freedom, freedom!” and the door will remain open.

Osho, Beyond Psychology, Ch 40, Q 3

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