Osho on Vision and Dream

Question : Beloved Osho, Recently it has started happening that as i begin to open my eyes first thing in the morning i can see a vision, like a scene from a movie — and that scene happens days after in reality, just like a repetition. Before i arrived here in bombay, i had a vision of the golden manor hotel — the setting, the garden, the people — and when i arrived here, it was exactly the same as my vision. I wrote you a letter about this earlier, but did not have the courage to deliver it. Now it has been happening often, and i don’t know if it is good or bad. Also, when you were in uruquay and i was in brazil, i had the sudden compulsion to go to my room, to sit on the floor and close my eyes. I did so, and like a flash, i saw you sitting at a table, laughing joyously. I could only see the back of another man who seemed a little bit serious or sad. Then you saw me and invited me in, and the man turned his face to see me. He was beautiful, very beautiful… The scene was so full of light! I’m sure he was not jesus — the beard was different and the eyes were more deep and direct. Hours later, the radio gave the news that krishnamurti had died hours before. Osho, from that day on, i was totally sure that you live on two levels simultaneously, and i don’t know on which level you are for most of the time during your daily life. You answered turiya that you don’t come into our dreams. But isn’t it true that you are so close to the disciple that we are one with you all the time, not only in our dreams?

Osho : One very fundamental thing has to be understood: a dream and a vision look alike, but they are two totally different phenomena.

A dream is a mind projection. It has no validity of its own. It is only a thought in picture form. Small children cannot think in thoughts, but they can understand pictures; hence, in their books you will see big pictures, beautiful colors, and very little writing. Slowly slowly, as the child grows up, the pictures go on becoming smaller and the writing in his books increases. Finally, when he is in the university, pictures disappear and only writing remains. You may not have inquired why this is so….

If you give a child in a kindergarten school a book which has no pictures, he will not be interested at all, because he has not yet learned to think in words. But he can dream more perfectly than you can dream; he dreams so perfectly that once in a while you will find a child waking up in the morning and crying — “Just now I had my bicycle. Where has it gone?” He was dreaming of riding on his bicycle, and as he opens his eyes he is in his bed and the bicycle is gone. And his dream is so clear that it is very difficult for him to make a distinction between the real bicycle and a dream bicycle; they look almost alike. We are grown up, but our unconscious never grows, it remains a child.

So in sleep, when your conscious mind — which has learned language, concepts, words — is fast asleep, your unconscious starts dreaming. It is a child, so every thought form has to be translated by the unconscious mind into a picture form.

This is one of the great discoveries of Sigmund Freud, listening to your dreams. And he does the opposite process, translates your dream back from picture form into language, into concepts, into words. It needs a tremendous expertise. Still, nobody can be certain about it. If you go to Sigmund Freud, each dream will end up as something sexual — because that is his idea, that all sex is repressed.

It is true that much sexuality is repressed, but there are many other things also which are repressed. It is not only sex. But it is a problem with inventors and pioneers particularly; they become so obsessed with their findings that they don’t take note of other possibilities.

Freud’s own disciple, Adler, went away from him just because Adler said that sex can be a part of repression, but that is not all. His own idea was that ambition, will to power, is far more important, and that a major part of your dreams concerns will to power.

For example, you dream that you have become a bird and you are flying. To Sigmund Freud it will symbolize only that you want the same sexual freedom as the birds and the animals, nothing else. But to Adler it will mean that flying upwards means you are ambitious, you want to become the prime minister. But this is all guesswork.

Another disciple, Carl Gustav Jung, also went away from Freud because he was more interested in the ancient mythologies, and he thought that our dreams are part of our previous lives. So if you are a bird flying, he will interpret it that in some of your past lives you have been a bird. Now what to do with these people, and how to decide? The language of pictures cannot be precise. It is almost like a painting: many people can see and can decide its meaning in different ways. Just as the child has a picture language, your unconscious has a picture language.

I am not interested in interpreting your dreams because it is such a rubbish job. You can go on interpreting for years and years, and the dreams will not come to an end — every day, six hours every night you have to dream. And you have inexhaustible sources of dreaming.

And it is very quick — the dream time is not the same as your ordinary time. Just reading your newspaper, you may fall asleep for a minute and you may see a dream which spreads for years; and when you wake up you look at your watch and just one minute has passed. You say, “My God, in one minute I saw a dream which is spread for a whole year, or even for years.”

Dream time is totally different. Up to now there has been no way to invent dream wristwatches, and perhaps there never will be a possibility, because there are lazy people and there are speedy people; some people are running fast, some people are simply sitting. In dreams also, the same differences exist: lazy people dream in a lazy way, speedy people dream in a speedy way; your dream reflects you. So I don’t think there is any possibility of making a watch which can function for everybody. It is not possible, because everybody’s dream speed is different.

Vision also appears to be just like dream, but it is not dream. A vision is an objective phenomenon, it is not projected by your mind. You are seeing something, you are not projecting. In a certain clarity, your mind is capable of seeing things.

For example, I was traveling with one of my friends. He is a poet. We were in an air-conditioned bus, and it must have been nearabout ten o’clock in the night. And he suddenly heard, “Munna, Munna.” Nobody else heard. I was sitting by his side, and he asked me, “Have you heard? Somebody is calling `Munna, Munna.'”
I said, “I have not heard anything. You must be dreaming.”

He said, “No, I am awake. I was smoking, I was not dreaming. And only my father calls me `Munna’. Nobody else calls me Munna, that is my childhood name. My mother, who used to call me Munna, has died. My father is the only person alive who calls me Munna; and nobody else even knows. And the voice was exactly like my father’s.”

I said, “Let us reach the destination and we can phone your house from there, to see what is the matter.”
We reached Nagpur nearabout twelve o’clock, and we phoned and we found that the father had died at exactly ten o’clock. Perhaps at the time of death he remembered his only son, and remembered the name that he always used.

Now, this is not a dream. He had not seen anything, but he had heard; it is objective. And the father was almost sixty miles away, and a dying man cannot shout to reach sixty miles. And if he had shouted that loudly, then everybody in the bus would have heard it. But only he heard it. Even I was not aware that his father called him `Munna’.

This is a vision… not visual, this is audio vision — not video, Niskriya! I may not come into your dreams — and if I come it is your projection, I am not responsible for it. If I do anything, I am not responsible for it! But I can come into a vision, and then the whole responsibility is mine.

The difference is very delicate.
The dream always happens when you are asleep.
The vision always happens when you are not asleep.

This is the first distinction: you are fully awake. And the vision always appears to be coming from outside, reaching to you. And sooner or later, you will find its validity, its reality.

The reality of dream you will never find. It is simple garbage, it is really the unwinding of the mind. The whole day the mind has to work, and it gets wound up, and needs unwinding to be fresh for tomorrow. So it is unwinding. Inconsistent things go on coming: you had been talking to somebody, you wanted to say something but you did not say it. Now that is hanging, it needs to be released — in the dream it will be released.

The dream is a great help, a cleaning. It is not against you, it keeps you sane; otherwise, everybody will go insane. For six hours your mind goes on cleaning itself of every impression that has remained incomplete in the mind — throws it off, prepares itself for tomorrow’s work. But dreaming has no other significance.

Vision is a reality.
The dream is of the mind.
And the vision has a connection with the heart.

These things you will have to feel, because the differences are very very fine. Whenever you are feeling something coming as a vision to you, be in a meditative mood, silent. Allow it to happen, be receptive; don’t interfere, don’t interpret. Just first let it be complete so that you can see it from the very beginning to the very end.

Most probably there will be no need of interpretation. Just seeing it in its completion will be enough; you will have the understanding. And then, soon some events will follow which will validate your vision. Your dreams will never be validated by existence. So whatever you have seen was a vision — you were awake.

And if you are silent, you can see things happening thousands of miles away. Space makes no difference. And you can see things which do not happen on the material level but happen on the level of consciousness. That’s what you are mentioning, two levels.

Yes, it is true. I have to work on two levels: one is the level where you live, where you are, and one is the level where I am and I want you also to be. From the top of a hill I have to come into the valley where you are; otherwise you won’t listen, you won’t believe the sunlit top. I have to take your hand in my hand and persuade you — and on the way, tell stories which are not true! But they keep you engaged, and you don’t create any trouble in walking; you go on, engaged with the story. And when you have reached the hilltop, you will know why I was telling long stories, and you will feel grateful that I told those stories; otherwise you would not have been able to travel that long, that far uphill.

It is something to be remembered: all the masters of the world have been telling stories, parables — why? The truth can be simply said, there is no need to give you so many stories. But the night is long, and you have to be kept awake; without stories you are going to fall asleep.

Till the morning comes there is an absolute necessity to keep you engaged, and the stories the masters have been telling are the most intriguing things possible. The truth cannot be said, but you can be led to the point from where you can see it. Now, the question is how to lead you to the point from where you can see it.

There is a story in Sarmad’s life. He was teaching his students, his disciples, and suddenly he said, “Come on out of the class, something is happening.” So they all came out. A man was dragging a bull, but the bull was very powerful. The man was also powerful, but a bull is a bull. So although the man was dragging the bull… the man was being dragged!
Sarmad showed his disciples, “Look, this is the situation.”
They said, “What do you mean?”
He said, “This is the situation between me and you, but I am not so stupid as this man.”
And he said, “Listen! Are you taking the bull for the first time?”

The man said, “I am a new servant, and I come from the city and I don’t know what to do… because I drag him one foot and he drags me four feet! It has been going on for hours, and I don’t think that it is going to end.”
Sarmad said, “You drop it! You don’t understand the ways of the village, and particularly the language of bulls.”

And he took a little grass, green and beautiful, and just walked ahead of the bull, without even touching the bull — and the bull followed him. And Sarmad started walking faster, and the bull walked faster. The man said, “This is great! He is not even dragging him, the bull is going on its own.”
And Sarmad said, “You take this grass. Don’t let him eat; otherwise, you will be in trouble. If he creates trouble, start running — he will run with you, but you will reach home.”
And he said to his disciples, “This is what I have been doing with you. All the parables, all the stories are nothing but green grass.”

Visions should not be made an object of thinking. You should just wait, and life will provide you the right validity. Then accept it with gratitude. Whatever you have seen was a vision, and it has been validated by life itself. Now there is no need to think about it. If you start thinking, you will create a mess. And if you don’t think, you will allow more visions to happen to you. And a man of visions starts moving from the lower plane, from the valley, to the higher plane, towards the top, without much effort.
It is a good indication that you are ready.

Source – Osho Book “Beyond Enlightenment”

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