Osho on Repenting about Missing Past

Question – Beloved Osho, my mind, the monster, distracts me even when i’m sitting in discourse. It simply takes over and thinks all sorts of silly thoughts and by the time discourse is over i get the feeling i missed another golden opportunity to be with you, drink from you, tune in with you. This leaves me very, very sad. what can i do?

Osho – Nishigandha, everybody has cultivated his mind for so long, for centuries, that it has got deep roots in you. You cannot destroy it in one day, it will take a little time. And if you become depressed that you are losing the opportunity then it will take even longer. What is missed is missed.

Never look backwards. Nothing can be done about it. If you miss a train, the second train will be coming. There is no point in crying and weeping and making a fuss because you have missed the train. One understands that what has happened, has happened: now be more alert so that you don’t miss the second train. And also be alert that you don’t catch the wrong train.

I have heard… three professors were standing on the platform and got involved in a deep philosophical discussion, and then they suddenly realized the train had left. So they ran — two of them managed to enter the last compartment. Only one was left behind, who was standing there with tears in his eyes.

A porter was watching all this. He came to the third man and he said, “Many times people miss — I work here — but there is no need to cry. Within just half an hour another train will be coming. You can catch that train.”
He said, “You don’t understand the situation. Those two fellows had come to see me off! In a hurry they got into the train — and they have taken my luggage too! What am I going to do with the train that is coming? First I have to get the luggage…

“And those two must be crying inside the train. They were not going anywhere; they had just come to see me off. But it was all such a hurry, so sudden, that everybody forgot who had come to send off and who was going… we all belong to the university’s philosophy department.”

It happens almost to everybody, so take it naturally. You say, “My mind, the monster…” Don’t call it “monster,” because that creates a hate relationship. Just as there are love relationships, there are hate relationships. People are not aware about their hate relationships.

I am reminded: In the freedom struggle of India, Mahatma Gandhi and Muhammad Ali Jinnah were arch enemies. Jinnah was asking for a separate country for Mohammedans, Pakistan, and Gandhi was insistent that the country should remain one: “Mohammedans and Hindus and Christians and Jains have always lived together — there is no need for Mohammedans to have a separate country. And why cut the country into parts?”

But Jinnah was very stubborn and he said, “Unless you agree to the separation, India will never become free, because Mohammedans will not agree to that freedom.”

And finally, in 1947 Gandhi had to agree, seeing that either you remain a slave forever or you divide the country: “It is better to divide the country; at least both countries will be independent.” The country was divided and in 1948 Mahatma Gandhi was shot, assassinated — of course by a man from Poona. Poona is a fertile land for murderers.

I am telling this because Jinnah was sitting in his garden in Karachi, Pakistan, talking to his secretary about some official work and suddenly a friend came running in and told Jinnah what had happened: “Gandhi has been assassinated!”

Nobody had seen tears in the eyes of Jinnah in his whole life. He was a very strong, stubborn, very logical, very rational man. The shock… his friend and his secretary could not believe it. He should be happy; his arch-enemy is dead — but there were tears.

He stood up, went inside the house, and told the friend, “Now I will not be living much longer either. Only today I realized how much I was related with Mahatma Gandhi. Without him, the whole world seems to be empty. We have been fighting our whole lives, and I never recognized that this fighting has also created a deep relationship. Without him I am almost half dead. All my joy for living is finished.”

Up to that day Jinnah never used to have bodyguards, because he could not believe that Mohammedans, for whom he had been fighting his whole life, could make an attempt on his life. The next day, Karachi was surprised: he had four people with loaded guns around him wherever he went. And somebody asked him what happened, because he used to go alone even in the market. There was no need even for a single bodyguard. He said, “If Hindus can kill Mahatma Gandhi, who has been fighting for them his whole life, what is the difficulty? Mohammedans can kill me.”I am already half dead, and now I cannot trust Mohammedans. Gandhi, who was loved and worshiped as a great soul, as a mahatma, has been killed by Hindus themselves. I was never loved as a great soul, as a mahatma. In fact Mohammedans have never thought that I am a proper Mohammedan,” because he never used to do the five prayers every Mohammedan is supposed to do. He never used to go to the mosque. He was a very ultra-modern man.

He was never in any way a man who can be considered a Mohammedan. He was educated in the West. He was not interested in the holy KORAN — he was just born into a Mohammedan family, that was all. And strangely enough, just within one year, he died. He started dying the same day Gandhi was assassinated. Hate is also a relationship, just as love is a relationship.

And psychology is now absolutely certain that the energy of love and hate is not different. It is the same energy: standing upside down it becomes hate, standing right side up it becomes love — it is the same energy. That’s why it is not very difficult — a friend turning into an enemy, an enemy turning into a friend.

Psychology has become aware of one more very significant thing: that you hate the same person you love. So there is a constant change: in the morning you love, in the afternoon you hate, in the evening you love, in the night you hate — just like a pendulum of a clock, your mind goes on moving between love and hate.

Don’t call your mind the “monster” because you are creating a hate relationship. And relationship is relationship, whether it is love or hate. Just be a silent watcher. “The mind distracts me even when I am sitting in discourse.”

So let him distract; you simply watch. You don’t interfere. You don’t try to stop, because any kind of action on your part is going to give energy to the mind. So whenever you can manage, you listen, and whenever mind wanders and takes you away, go easily with the mind. There is no harm.

It will look strange to you that I am saying go with the mind easily. Just be watchful — without condemning the mind, without abusing the mind — just be watchful that the mind is going somewhere else. And you are in for a great surprise.

It will take a little time, but slowly, slowly the mind will not wander so much. You will have a few gaps to listen to me; then those gaps will become bigger. And because you are not creating any relationship with the mind — of love or hate — you are becoming indifferent to mind.

Gautam Buddha has made it a meditation. He called it upeksha — indifference. Just be indifferent to the mind, and it won’t be a disturbance for long. And it is worthwhile to wait and not be in a hurry, because the very hurry will make your mind more stubborn. If you want to push it away, it will come back with force. You just let it do whatever it wants to do. It is none of your concern, this way or that. Suddenly a watchfulness arises. It takes a little time. It depends on you, how much indifference you can create towards the mind, how much you can be watchful. The mind will become slowly, slowly rejected. It will stop doing its things, because now nobody is interested. For whom to do all the circus?

Just a few days before… my sister is here; her son had come. Now he is married and has children. The moment I saw him I remembered. It must be twenty years ago… they used to live in Kanva.

The chief minister of Madhya Pradesh was also from Kanva. He wanted to meet me and he invited me to have dinner with him, so my brother-in-law took me in his car. And this boy was very small, he may have been five years old. He also went with us. He was sitting on the front seat by the side of his father; I was in the back seat. My brother-in-law got out of the car and told me, “I will go and look, and make arrangements, and inform him that you are here, so he can come out and welcome you.”

It took a long time. The minister was phoning somebody in the capital of Bhopal. The little boy fell asleep and struck his head on the steering wheel. I saw it, I heard it, but I started looking out of the window. He looked at me. I did not give any attention to what had happened. He tried two or three times to look at me: whenever he would look at me, I would look out of the window, so he thought: “It is useless.”

When we went back home, after two hours, as he got out of the car he started crying. I said, “What has happened? Why are you crying?”

He said, “It happened two hours before! I had hit my head on the steering wheel. But you are strange: whenever I would look at you for some consolation, you would not look at me. So I thought, what is the point of crying? This man will not even say anything, and even if I cry or weep, my father is out. Now we are back and my mother is here. Now I can cry.” “But,” I said, “two hours ago?”

But I could see his argument, it was right. If there is nobody to pay attention to you, what is the point in crying? At home everybody is going to pay attention. Then to make a fuss and cry… although now he is not hurting; it had happened two hours before. And just a few days ago he was here, and I remembered. Now he has a child of the same age. Mind is nourished by your attention, for or against. You just be indifferent; look out of the window.

“It simply takes over and thinks all sorts of silly thoughts and by the time discourse is over I get the feeling I missed another golden opportunity to be with You.” Don’t call them “silly” thoughts. These adjectives are dangerous: “monster” mind, “silly” thoughts. You are taking great interest in it. Maybe you are against it, but the interest is there. Be utterly indifferent. It is a golden key. And slowly, slowly the mind will start remaining silent.

And afterwards you repent that “I have missed another opportunity.” Never repent about the past because that is again wasting the present. First you wasted the past; now you are wasting the present.

If you have wasted the golden opportunity to be with me, now don’t waste the golden opportunity to be with the sun, to be with the moon, to be with the trees. It is the same opportunity. The whole thing boils down to one single point: be silent. And everything becomes a golden opportunity.

But you are taking attitudes. You are saying, “This makes me very, very sad.” You are in a vicious circle. First the mind takes you away; it is a “monster,” all its thoughts are “silly.” And when you are leaving here, you become sad, and you start condemning your mind.

There is no need to be sad: it is mind’s nature, and what has gone is gone. What is available herenow, don’t make it sad for that which is dead. On the contrary, make it so joyful that you can take revenge for the past too. Dance and sing so that what has been lost in the past moments is gained in the present. By sadness you cannot gain it, but by being joyous you can gain it.

And a few days or a few months are nothing much. In the long, long eternity they are just like small seconds. Nishigandha, a Frenchman staying at an English country house for the weekend was attracted to a debutante, and without much difficulty, seduced her. Several months later they met by chance at a very select society ball. He stepped forward with outstretched hand, but she walked straight past him without acknowledgement. As soon as he could, the Frenchman
cornered her and said, “Surely you remember me?”

“Of course I do young man, but you are not to assume that in England a one-night frolic constitutes an introduction.”

In a way she is right. Just a one-night frolic cannot be an introduction. The reality is that you may be living with your wife for thirty or forty years — even then you are strangers, you are not introduced to each other yet.

You have lived with the mind for centuries, for many, many lives, yet you are not introduced to it. You don’t know its workings, you don’t know its strategies. The repentance afterwards is also part of your mind; the sadness afterwards is also part of your mind. So you are moving in a vicious circle: first you miss the opportunity, then you abuse the mind, call the mind names: it is a “monster,” the thoughts are “silly,” then you become sad. And this whole game is of the mind.

You have to detach yourself and be a witness. Let the mind do whatsoever it is doing, but don’t get identified with it. It is not you. You are pure awareness. You are just awareness.

If you can remember only this much… Gautam Buddha has used the words samma sati — right remembrance — and the mind will disappear with all its silliness, sadness, monstrosity. A single thing you have to keep: a remembering that “I am not the mind.” You are not to say to yourself, “I am not the mind.” The moment you say it, it becomes part of the mind, because language belongs to the mind. You have to remember it without any language, just a feel: I am not the mind.

I am using words because I have to tell you, but you are not to use words. You have just to be aware and remember without using language. The mind will go. It has always happened. You cannot be an exception.

Source – Osho Book “The Hidden Splendor”

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