Osho on Fatalistic Attitude

Question – What is the difference between being a fatalist and just floating, feeling everything is beautiful?

Osho – A vast difference, a lot of difference. And the difference is not of quantity, the difference is of quality. The fatalist is one who has not understood life, but who has felt failure. A fatalist is one who feels helpless, frustrated. In fatalism he seeks consolation. He says, “It was going to be so.” He’s trying so avoid that he has failed. It was going to be so, so what can he do? He is throwing the responsibility on fate, on God, on XYZ. “I’m not responsible, what can I do? It was written in my fate. It was predetermined, predestined.” He is saying, “I’m not responsible.” He has failed. In deep frustration he is trying to find some refuge, some shelter. Fatalism is a consolation.

And the other thing,’just floating, feeling everything is beautiful’, is not a consolation — it is an understanding. It is not fatalism; it is not failure; it is not helplessness. It is simply a deep insight into reality, as things are. It is to understand that you are a very small part of the cosmic whole. And you are not separate. You are one with the continent — you are not an island.

The understanding that the ego is false, the understanding that the separation is false, the understanding that you don’t have a separate destiny than the whole, that a drop in the ocean need not worry about its own destiny — the ocean has to worry about it — is not helplessness. In fact it releases tremendous power. Once you are unburdened by yourself, once you are no more worried about yourself, you become a tremendous energy. Then the energy is no more struggling; now it floats. Now you are not fighting with the whole, now you are with the whole, marching with the whole. Then you are not trying to prove anything against the whole, because that is simply foolish.

It is as if my own hand starts fighting with me and starts trying to have its own destiny, separate from me. I am going to the south, and my head starts going to the north. It is so foolish, it is impossible — foolish, and impossible — and frustration is bound to be there. Sooner or later the hand will see that the hand wanted to go to the north, but it is going to the south. Deep in frustration, the hand will say, “It is fate. I am helpless.”

In fact, the feeling of helplessness arises because of the struggle. When you understand that you are part of the whole, that you are not separate at all, that in fact the whole has been trying to attain some heights through you; you are only a passage, a vehicle — suddenly all frustration disappears. When you don’t have a goal of your own, how can you be frustrated?. When you don’t have to prove anything against anything; when you don’t have to struggle, there is no need for fatalism; you need not have any consolation. You simply dance with the whole; you flow with the whole. You know you are the whole.

That is the meaning when the Upanishads say: AHAM BRAHMASMI — I am God. That is the meaning when Jesus says, “I and my God are one” — not fatalism, not settling in helplessness; rather, knowing the fact that we are one with the whole. Then your atomic tinyness disappears. You become cosmic…. JUST FLOATING,FEELING EVERYTHING IS BEAUTIFUL. Then it happens; then you just float; there is nothing else to do. The same energy that was trying to fight surrenders. Then you are not pushing the river: you simply float on the river, and the river takes you. The river is already going to the ocean. You are unnecessarily worried. You can simply Leave that responsibility to the river. Whether you leave it or not, it is already going.

Don’t fight, because in fight there is going to be frustration — in fight is the seed of frustration, and in frustration you will seek some way to console yourself. Then fatalism is born. If you don’t fight then everything is just beautiful. Why? Because then you don’t have any idea of your own to compare it with. Everything is beautiful for how could it be otherwise? You don’t have any conflict; hence everything is beautiful. If the river turns to the right, you turn to the right — beautiful. If the river turns to the left — perfectly beautiful, you turn to the left. If you have some idea and some goal, if you say, “I am a leftist,” then there is going to be trouble. When the river starts turning towards the right, you will say, “Now this is going too far; now I cannot surrender — I am a leftist.” Then you will start fighting against the river, and then the river will not be beautiful because your notion, your idea, your ideal, has come in.

Whenever ideology comes in, things become ugly. All idealists live in hells. Ideology creates hells. If you don’t have any ideology you have nothing to compare: you don’t have any criterion. Then whatsoever is happening, is happening — you have nothing to compare it with. Then wherever the river is going, that is the only way to go. Then one simply allows existence to have its own way. One never comes in the way; a deep let-go.

Then everything is beautiful. And then you realize that it has never been otherwise. Everything was beautiful, always. Look at the animals; look at the birds; look at the clouds; look at the trees. Ask the trees; ask the stones. Everything is beautiful. The trees must be very much surprised that you look so sad. The trees must be puzzled that man looks so burdened, when everything is so light and so floating. The birds must be laughing at you that you go on carrying such a load — the load seems to be nowhere except in your mind.

So much burdened, you miss life. So much burdened, you miss love. So much burdened, you miss celebration. So much burdened, you miss laughter. You cannot sing; you cannot dance; you cannot laugh. And because of this, you become desperate and you start fighting more. You think you are not fighting as much as you should. That’s why you are not so happy.

Once a man came to me, a very rich man, but very reluctant to accept the fact that he was not happy. People don’t accept that they are not happy. They are unhappy, but they won’t accept it because that is very ego shattering. They, and unhappy? Impossible.

I looked into that rich man. I see thousands of unhappy men, but he was rare — I have not found another so unhappy. And he had everything. And he tried to smile. The smile was absolutely false, painted, just on the lips, not coming from anywhere; not coming from the inner being; just mentally created, a facade, a trick of the mind. I immediately looked at the man and felt that he was so unhappy, but also unable to accept being unhappy. So I said to the man, “You look so happy. What are the reasons for your happiness?”

He looked surprised. He was never expecting that. He said, “What do you say — I, and happy?”
“Yes, I have never seen such a happy man. And that’s why I would like — enlighten me a little — what are the causes of your happiness?”

The man started enumerating, “I have so much money, a beautiful wife, children, palaces, cars, swimming pools, this and that.” But while he was enumerating, deep down, there was only hell and darkness. And he knew it, and he could not believe that he had deceived me. But still he was trying.

Then I asked one question more: “You say that because of these things you are happy; just one question more. You say that you are happy. I would like to know, how much happiness has your happiness given you? How much happiness has your happiness really given you?”

Then he caught the point. He started crying and he said, “I am not happy. And you have caught me. I go on deceiving myself that I am happy. I go on deceiving others. I am desperate to prove that I am happy.”

Remember, only an unhappy man tries to prove that he is happy; only a sad man tries to prove that he is not sad; only a dead man tries to prove that he is alive; only a coward tries to prove that he is brave. Only a man who knows his inferiority tries to prove that he is superior. You go on trying to prove the opposite of what you are, and the possibilities are ninety-nine out of a hundred that you are just the opposite. When you smile, I can see hidden tears. When you try to dance, I can see the rocklike heart within that cannot move. Dancing is impossible.

Why is man in such a plight? The whole world laughs. The trees laugh at you. You may not hear; you may be escaping; you may have become deaf. The birds laugh; the animals laugh. Something has gone wrong with man. What has gone wrong with him? Only one thing: the whole of nature is flowing and man is fighting. In nature the ego does not exist. Trees are there, but without any egos — only man is with the ego. And that ego is the whole hell.

That ego needs continuous fight, because it feeds on fight. The more you fight, the stronger your ego becomes. It is a fighter. That’s why surrender is so difficult. But unless you surrender you will remain in misery. Surrender is the door to bliss, to beauty, to truth, to love, to life, to God. Surrender is the door. And when I say ‘surrender’, I don’t mean that surrender has to be towards someone. That is just an excuse; because you cannot surrender unless you have someone to surrender to — that’s why someone is needed. Otherwise there is no need; you can simply surrender, and the door is open.

That’s what Buddha says. He said,”Simply surrender.” But that looks very difficult for the mind. You need some excuse. Jesus says, “Surrender to God.” If you cannot just surrender, then surrender to God. Krishna says, “If you cannot surrender, then surrender to me. Let me be the excuse.” But when you surrender, then you know that Krishna tricked you. When you surrender you will not find Krishna there: you will find the whole cosmos and you floating in it, part of it. Then you are no more separate — not going on your way. Then everything is beautiful, blissful. Without conflict ugliness disappears; without conflict sadness disappears; without conflict sorrow disappears. Then whatsoever is, is beautiful.

And it is so. But it is not fatalism. It is not an ‘ism’ at all. It has nothing to do with a faith or predetermination or any nonsense. It has simply something to do with the insight that I belong to the whole and the whole belongs to me; that I am in my home, I am not a stranger. And there is no need to fight.

With whom are you fighting? All fight is foolish, is stupid. Surrender is wisdom. Fight is stupid. Float; flow with the flow; move with the whole. Don’t have private dreams and don’t have private goals. Don’t have a private ideology. Then this moment you live; and when the next moment comes, you live in it. If life is there, you live life; if death comes, you live death. Whatsoever happens, you are grateful.

I have heard about a Sufi mystic who used to pray and every day thank God. His disciples were worried. Many times they were very much puzzled, because sometimes it was okay to thank God because things were going well. But the man was absolutely unconcerned about things — sometimes when things were going very badly, then too he would give thanks.

One day it was too much: the disciples for three days were hungry and starving, and they were not given refuge in any town. They were thrown out. The people were very orthodox, and the master was a revolutionary, a very unorthodox, non-traditional man, unconventional, nonconformist; so no village would allow them even to have shelter in the night. And they were without food. On the fourth day, in the morning, when the master started praying, the disciples said, “Now it is going too far — he said to God,’How wonderful you are! You always give me whatsoever I need.’ ”

Then one disciple said, “Wait, one minute. Now it is becoming absurd. What are you saying.? Three days we have been hungry. We are dying; no shelter in any town, and you are thanking God that whatsoever you need he always gives!”

And the mystic started laughing, and he said, “Yes, for these three days we needed starvation; for these three days we needed to be rejected. He always gives whatsoever we need. For these three days we needed to be poor, absolutely poor. Whatsoever we need he always gives, and I am thankful.” And he started praying and thanking God and being grateful. If you are not fighting, then an understanding arises that everything is beautiful and whatsoever is needed is happening, whatsoever is needed for your growth. Sometimes poverty is needed; sometimes starvation is needed; sometimes illness is needed. In fact, I have not come across anything which is not a need sometimes to someone. If you understand, you accept. If you accept, you grow. If you reject, your whole energy becomes a wastage in fighting. The same situation could have been a growth — now it is simply a wastage, a leakage. Don’t be a fatalist, because in the first place don’t fight. If you fight and get frustrated, then fatalism enters in. In the first place, don’t fight.

One man came to me and he was in much trouble because he got married and he found a woman, as almost all people find, a very quarrelsome woman, continuously fighting and creating hell for him. He came to me and said, “Have compassion on me.” And he said, “I would like to ask one question. What would you have done in my place?”
I told him, “In the first place I would not have been in your place! Why should I be?”

A man who is floating, accepting, understanding, has no need of fatalism. In the first place he is not fighting, so there is no need to seek some consolation. Fatalism is the end of a wrong life, and the feeling of let-go is the beginning of a right life. They are vastly different, tremendously different, qualitatively different. Remember the difference, because it happens that you would also like to say good things about your failures. When you fail, you start saying, “Now I am in a let-go.” Don’t try to deceive yourself, because you are deceiving only yourself; the existence is not deceived. If you have failed, try to understand why you have failed. In the first place you started fighting, that’s why.

If you understand that, then even your successes will look like failures. They are. Sooner or later each success becomes a failure. It is only a question of time. What you call success is failure on the way. So if every man is given enough time to fight then success and failure will all disappear and everybody will become a fatalist. That’s why in old conditions, ancient conditions, fatalism exists — not in new countries. For example, in America fatalism does not exist. It is a child country, a baby country, just three hundred years of history; it is nothing. In India, fatalism exists:thousands and thousands of years of history, so old and so ancient that it has known all success, all failure; it has known all types of frustration. Now, finding no other way, it seeks consolation in fatalism.

As a country grows old, it becomes fatalist. As a man grows old, he becomes a fatalist. Young people are not fatalists: they believe in themselves. Old people become fatalists, because by that time they have come to know at least one thing, that they have failed. Then they find consolation. The whole basis is wrong. In the first place don’t fight, then there will be no need to fail; there will be no need to succeed; there will be no need to fight and there will be no need to console yourself Each moment is such a blessing if you don’t fight.

Source – Osho Book “Come Follow To You, Vol 3”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *