Osho on Silence

Question : Many people are in Silence now. Do you recommend this? What is the purpose? Can it be helpful?

Osho – I don’t recommend, but they understand. I don’t recommend anything in particular – except understanding. But if you understand, you would love silence. I don’t say: ’Be silent,’ because then it would become suppressive. If you understand me, if you look towards me, you will see silence before yourself. And you will have a deep desire arising in you to be silent. Because in deep silence all that is beautiful and true becomes available.

But you are in a constant chattering; the inner talk continues. Either you are talking with other people or you are talking with yourself. You are talking the whole day; even in the night, in dreams, you are talking. This continuous talking functions as a barrier, you cannot see through it; it is like a fog that densely surrounds you. Your intelligence is destroyed because of this constant talk.

I don’t recommend anything, because then it becomes a discipline. Then because I say you have to be silent you force silence. A forced silence is ugly. A forced silence will not give you the right taste of silence. No. Just understand. Try to understand me, feel me. And then you would like to be silent. And when you would like to be silent, only then can it be beautiful.

When silence arises from your own heart with a deep understanding, by and by you become silent. In fact, then you don’t become silent; you by and by drop the talk – the inner talk, the outer occupation. Then silence is not the thing; you just understand that the whole talking is nonsense. Why go on talking? For what? There is nothing to say, but you go on talking.

In the Chinese language there is an idiogram which means two things together. The Chinese language is really something totally different from any other language – because only pictures exist, no alphabet. And each picture means many things. One idiogram ’pi’ means two things. One is: to explain; one meaning is: to explain. The other meaning is: in vain. To explain is to explain in vain. Isn’t it marvellous? There is nothing to explain.

Nothing to say, really.Just watch! What do you go on talking about the whole day? Ninety -nine percent would have been avoided easily. I don’t say a hundred percent because I know, a few things – just day-to-day things – one has to talk about. But then things will become telegraphic; you need not go on round about, round about. Many times a ’yes’ or a ’no’ will do. And many times even that is not needed, just a nodding of the head will do.

And many times even that is not needed because the other is not worried what you think; he is simply unloading himself. You can just watch; there is no need to listen. If you become aware, the outer talk, the inner talk, by and by disappears. Not that you start practicing silence – no. It is just that the outer and inner talk becomes absolutely absurd, futile. You just drop it. And silence is reclaimed.

When the words disappear, silence arises. It is not directly to be achieved; it is an indirect result of understanding. Yes, many people understand. I hope you will also understand; I wish that you will understand. But, with me, remember always I don’t recommend anything – because too many things have been recommended to you. And they have become ugly.

I don’t give you a discipline, I don’t give you an outer mode of life; I only give you an inner light. In that inner light you have to find your discipline. I make you aware about certain things. Then take the hint and don’t wait for direct recommendations – because then you will be a loser. I am not going to give you anything direct, because direct discipline is needed only by very stupid minds. I hope that you behave more intelligently, more responsively.

Become more responsible. Do you see the difference? If I say: ’Be silent!’ you will have to follow it. It will be forced – as if a flower has been forced and opened. It has not opened by itself. A flower opens by itself. Let your silence become a flower opening by itself on its own accord.

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