Osho on Sufism

Osho : Sufism is a vision. In fact to call it ’Sufism’ is not right because it is not an ’ism’ at all. Sufis don’t call it ’Sufism’; it is the name given by the outsiders. They call their vision TASSAWURI, a love-vision, a loving approach towards reality. It is falling in love with existence. The person who thinks about existence is a little bit antagonistic because he creates a problem out of existence – as if existence is challenging him and he has to decipher it, he has to decode the mystery, he has to destroy the mystery. He fights.

Sufis say: We and the existence are one. There is no need to fight. Persuade, coo, invite, love, befriend, and the existence itself starts revealing its mysteries. There is no need to rape it. The philosophic approach, the scientific approach, the intellectual approach, is a rape!

It is forcing existence to reveal its heart. It is undressing existence by force and violence. The violence may be of scientific methods or of logical methods – it doesn’t matter – but the violence is there. The philosopher has taken a standpoint as if nature is not ready to reveal its mysteries; it has to be forced. It is a violent approach. Sufism says there is no need, the existence is waiting for you to come close so that it can reveal its heart.

The existence is waiting for you to fall in love with it. If you are deeply in love with existence, it starts opening, it starts revealing its secrets. It has been waiting long for you to come close. There is no need to force it, there is no need to rape! You can fall in love. A world-view is an aggressive stance, a vision is a love stance. I said to you that Sufism is not a system, because all systems create bondage. They create prisons around you.

Sufism is freedom. It does not create any system around you. It does not tell you to believe in a certain system. Yes, it talks about trust, but not of belief. Trust is a totally different thing. Belief is belief in a theory, in a philosophy, in a world-view: you believe in Islam, you believe in Hinduism, you believe in Christianity. But when you trust, you trust in life. You don’t believe in life, you trust in life; you believe in philosophies.

Belief is a poor substitute for trust. And remember, belief is again from the head, trust is from the heart. Their qualities are different, altogether different, diametrically opposite. Never become part of a belief system: never become a Hindu or a Mohammedan or a Jaina or a Buddhist. When you become part of a belief system you are becoming a slave.

If you can find a place, a space, where belief is not imposed on you but trust is helped, find that place. That is the right place where you can really grow and grow into freedom. There is no other growth – growth in freedom is the only growth. I said to you that Sufism is not a philosophy, but it is not anti-philosophy either. It simply takes no note of philosophies, anti-philosophies. It bypasses them, it is indifferent.

It says: Why be bothered with words while reality is available? When you can drink the water, why be worried about the theories about water? When you can go in the sun and dance with the sunrays, why be bothered about theories? Why not have an experience, an authentic experience? Philosophy goes round and round; it is about and about.

It never penetrates the core of truth. It thinks ABOUT truth, but to think about truth is to falsify. Truth has to be encountered, not thought about. Truth has to be LIVED not believed.

Truth is not a conclusion: you don’t arrive at truth by a syllogistic process. Truth is THERE! You are truth, the trees are truth, the birds are truth, the sun, the moon. The truth is all over the place, and you close your eyes and you think about truth? All thinking will take you astray. There is no need to think. Live it! Only by living do you come to know it.

Sufism is not a way of thinking but a way of life, a way of living; not a philosophy of life but a way of life. I said Sufism is not speculative. Speculation means that you think about things you have not known. Now this is foolish. Speculation means a blind man thinking about light, a deaf man thinking about music. When you think about God do you think you are in any way different from the blind man thinking about light?

You have not seen God, you have not tasted anything divine, and you go on thinking. What will you do? Yes, mind is very clever and it can spin and weave beautiful systems, but those systems are just irrelevant. Good or bad, logical, illogical – they are just irrelevant. They have no relevance to reality, they have no context in reality, they are mind games. Sufism is not a mind game; that’s why it is practical, absolutely practical.

If you ask a Sufi about God, he will laugh, or he will sing a song which has no reference to God, or he will tell you a story in which God is never mentioned, or he will say something which seems absolutely unrelated to the question.

He is simply saying, ”Don’t be foolish. Let us be practical.” You ask about God and he will talk about prayer, not about God. A true Sufi will avoid the subject of God. He will talk about prayer; prayer is practical. You ask about paradise and he will talk about your misery and how to drop it – that is practicalness. Because paradise is not somewhere else, when you have dropped your miserable ways, you are in paradise, or to be more true, you ARE paradise.

Sufis always talk about techniques, methods. They never talk about ’whats’, they only talk about ’hows’. In that way they are as scientific as any scientist. Sufism is a glimpse of how religion should be. It is pointless to talk about God; create the ladder that takes you to God.

It is utterly a waste of time talking about paradise; give methods so that paradise can be explored inside your being. It is an inner phenomenon, it is your inner space. And so is hell. Sufism is not even a religion. Rather, it is religiousness. It has no church, it has no book – Bible or Koran or Veda or Dhammapada. It has no book, no sacred book. It has no church. Sufism is a very, very free-floating religiousness.

Anybody can be a Sufi – a Hindu, a Christian, a Mohammedan. Anywhere, one can be a Sufi. It is a practical approach on how to create religiousness.

3 thoughts on “Osho on Sufism, Sufism is a vision”
  1. Dear persons:
    I have a question about Osho.
    I have read many of his books including
    several on Sufism. Recently when I
    was reading Oshos book on Rinzai and
    Zen, in his conversation with Coleman
    Barks, Osho bashed Sufism!
    I was confused since this was contradictory
    to his praises of Sufism.
    Would you please explain this contradiction
    by Osho.

    Ken Behzadi

  2. Beloved,
    Osho is all about contradiction. The purpose of a Master is to put one beyond mind. Allow it to sink in without any “yes” or “no”. The mind is very adept at latching onto everything. Allow a deep not-knowing, let go…

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