Osho on Clinging to Life

Osho – if you want to abide always and always, you have not lived the moment. One who has lived his life truly, authentically, one who has enjoyed it, is always ready to die, is always ready to leave. One who has not enjoyed and celebrated, one who has not lived the moment, the life, is always afraid to leave because “the time has come to leave and I am yet unfulfilled.” The fear of death is not the fear of death, it is a fear of remaining unfulfilled. You are going to die, and nothing, nothing at all could you experience through life — no maturity, no growth, no flowering. Emptyhanded you came, emptyhanded you are going. This is the fear!

One who has lived is always ready to die. His readiness is not a forced attitude. His readiness is just like a flower. When the flower has flowered, has sent its perfume to the infinite corners of existence, enjoyed the moment, lived it, danced through the breeze, risen against the wind, looked at the sky, watched the sunrise, lived it, a fulfillment comes by the evening and the flower is ready to drop to the earth, to go back, to rest. And it is always beautiful — when you have lived, rest is beautiful. It is the thing! The flower simply drops to the earth and goes to sleep. There is no tension, no anguish, no cry, no effort to cling.

You cling to life because your life is unfulfilled. You have not risen against a strong wind. You have not known the morning, and the evening has come. You have never been young, and old age is knocking at the door. You never loved, and death is coming. This unfulfilled state and the coming of death creates the fear. Buddha says that if you have lived you will always be ready to die. And that readiness will not be something forced upon you. It will be the thing, it will be a natural thing! As you are born, you die. As you come, you go. This is the wheel of existence. You lived the being part, now you will live the nonbeing part. You existed, now you will not exist. You rose, you manifested, now you will move into the unmanifested. You were visible, embodied, now you will move without the body to the invisible. You had your day; now you will take rest in the night. What is wrong in it?

The search for the permanent shows that you remain unfulfilled. The search to have a permanent self is a clinging. You know that death is going to be there, so what to do? The body will disintegrate, disappear; now you have your hopes that some permanent self must be there which will go on and on and on. Remember: those who are afraid, they always believe in the eternal soul.

Look in this country: the whole country believes that the soul is eternal, but you cannot find a more cowardly country in the world. It is not accidental. Why are Indians so cowardly? In fact, if they know that the soul is never going to die they should be the bravest — because death doesn’t exist! They go on talking about the deathless, and if you watch their life they are more afraid of death than anybody else. Otherwise, how can you explain the one thousand years of slavery of this country? Very small races — England is no bigger than a small province of India. Three crore people only were able to dominate a country of fifty crore. It seems simply impossible! How did it happen? — because the country is cowardly. They cannot fight, they are afraid of death. They talk about the deathless — and this is not accidental, there is a reasoning behind it.

Whenever somebody talks too much about the deathless it means he is afraid of death, he is a coward. And India has not lived because of the priests. India has not lived life because of the priests. They have been teaching people to renounce, so everybody is ready, before he has lived, to renounce. Then the fear comes in. If you have lived, lived to your total capacity, to the optimum, the fear of death disappears. Only then does the fear of death disappear, never before it. If you renounce life, if you don’t love, if you don’t eat, if you don’t enjoy and dance; if you simply renounce and condemn and you say, “This is all materialistic. I am against it”… who is this “I” who says “I am against it”? This is the ego.

You cannot find greater egoists than so called spiritualists. They are always condemning the materialist. They are always saying: “What! You are wasting your life. Eat, drink, and be merry — this is your religion. You are a burden on the earth. You have to be thrown into hell.” Who is condemning? What is wrong in “Eat, drink, and be merry”? What is wrong in it? That is the first part of life. It should be so. You should eat, drink, and be merry.

You should celebrate. Only then, when you have celebrated to the optimum, are you ready to go, are you ready to leave and with no grudge, with no complaint. You lived the day, now the night has come. And when the day was so beautiful — you rose with the waves in the sky, and you did whatsoever the moment demanded — then the rest, then going back to the earth is beautiful.

India has been renouncing, and a religion that renounces is false. A religion that makes you capable of celebrating to the optimum is the true religion. And this is the beauty of it: if you live life, a renunciation comes automatically. It happens — that is the nature. If you eat well, satiety comes. If you drink well, the thirst disappears. If you lived well, the clinging to life disappears. It has to be so. This is the law, the logos. If you have not lived well, then you always remain clinging, then you always dream about how to live. And if you have renounced this life you have to project another life. You need a permanent self, otherwise what will you do? You missed this life, and there is no other life? You need a permanent self. You have to believe and console yourself: “Okay, the body dies but the self never dies.”

Source – Osho Book “The Hidden Harmony”

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