Drop all beliefs. Then the relative disappears and the
A small story, a Tibetan story.
Once long ago a pilgrim found himself in. the desert
beyond Tibet. It was a starless night, the sky like
black lacquer, the dusty wind importunately pulling at
his hair and beard, and the jagged rocks rising to wound
his stumbling feet. The pilgrim had hoped to reach a
great spiritual teacher beyond the wilderness, but now
that hope was gone. He might well die of thirst before
morning. Fervently, the pilgrim prayed to Amida
the Lord of Light – for help.
Immediately, his foot struck something that was not a
stone. It was a silver bowl filled to the brim with pure
cold melting snow. The pilgrim drank all he could, in
his weakened condition, and then, with a cracked prayer
of gratitude, sank down upon the sand. He fell asleep.
When dawn awakened him, the pilgrim reached once again
for the saving silver bowl. It proved to be a human
skull. Bits of flesh, fringing the bare bone still,
showed that the skull must have beenfull of life until
Besides, the hollow of it held what seemed to be
brain-fluid, swimming thick with maggots like dirty grey
thoughts. The pilgrim vomited at the sight. As he did
so, SATORI came to him. He turned homeward, without
delay. That which he sought was accomplished. He had
found his teacher, and his temple as well – the temple
of the skull.
This story is of tremendous importance. What happened?
How did the SATORI happen? In the night he believed in
his thirst that Buddha has given him this silver bowl.
It was a dark night, starless – it was just his belief;
created by his thirst. He was dying, he was on the verge
of death – his mind must have dreamed, must have
projected. In a human skull he saw a silver bowl – he
projected. And he thought the brain-fluid was just pure
ice-water – he drank it.
And it was so – when he thought it was pure ice-water,
it was pure ice-water; and when he thought it was a
silver bowl, it was a silver bowl. You live in your
projections. Happy, he thanked Buddha and fell asleep.
In the morning when the sun was rising, he opened his
eyes. He wanted to see the silver bowl that had saved
his life... and it was a human skull. bits of flesh
fringing the bare bone still, showed that the skull must
been full of life untill quite recently, Disgusting.
Besides, the hollow of it held what seemed to be
brain-Fluid... nauseating...Swimming thick with Maggots
like dirty Grey thoughts. You can think of that man,
that poor man. He vomited. Now it was no more a silver
bowl, and it was no more pure ice-water. He vomited. And
in that vomiting, something dawned in his consciousness.
He could see that it is all a mind game: if you see it
as a silver bowl, it becomes a silver bowl. In the
night, there was no nausea.
He had drunk the brain-fluid with maggots in it, but
there was no nausea and no question of vomiting. And he
had thanked God, thanked
Buddha, in great gratitude. And
he had fallen asleep, and he slept the whole night
beautifully, and there was nothing wrong. And now,
seeing it, the vomiting comes – after hours. A great
understanding happened – that it is all the mind. If it
is all the mind, then there is no need to go anywhere:
you can drop the mind at your own home. That was the satori, just seeing the point of it – it is just an
If he had got up early in the morning and had left, then
there would never have been any vomiting. It is just an
idea. And who knows? – in the night, maybe Amida Buddha
had managed to produce a silver bowl. Mm? these Buddhas
are strange people, they can do things like that. In the
night he may have drunk out of a silver bowl – who
knows? – and there was nothing to vomit over. Or maybe
in the morning Amida Buddha had managed to produce this
skull filled with brain-fluid, streaming with maggots,
dirty maggots. Who knows?
But that is not the point. One thing is certain – that
when you believe one thing you live in one reality, when
you believe another thing you live in another reality.
It is only a question of belief. All your worlds are
belief-worlds. Hence the satori. He must have
laughed: that vomit was a great experience. He must have
he must have understood the very root of it all. And
then there was no need to seek the teacher, the teacher
has been found. And there was no need to go to the
temple where he was going, the temple has been found...
in the human skull.
He must have come back dancing, he must have come back
celebrating, he must have come back a totally different
man. A man who is no more asleep in thoughts, in the
mind – a man who lives no more in projections, a man who
dreams no more. A man who now sees – whose clarity has
become absolute, whose consciousness now has a
transparency. This is what satori is.
Osho book "Zen: The Path of Paradox, Volume 2"
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