Osho on Mystery of Pilgrimage Places
Osho - Great treasures have been hidden underground for which a search is going on even today. For example, the richest treasure on earth, for which a search is going on – that of the last czar of Russia – have been buried somewhere in America. It is certain that such a treasure was hidden there because the czar was only dethroned in 1917, not long ago. On a map, the exact location is available, but the description cannot be decoded.
Similarly the hidden treasures of the Gwalior king’s family is somewhere in Gwalior. There is a map, but the exact location cannot be decoded. Such maps are made in a secret code, otherwise they might fall into the wrong hands.
Similarly the places of pilgrimage places are well indicated, but the exact place where the spiritual event took place may not be known. Such places are hidden from ordinary people. This is very confusing. You may go to some place where it is said Mahavira reached nirvana, but there is a great possibility that the exact spot is a little away from the place shown to everyone. The real location is shown only to those people who are authentic and deserving seekers. There, those people can bow down in respect and return home.
The real location will be kept hidden for those who come there out of an authentic spiritual search and who need that help for the jump. There are many such places.... In one Arab country there is a small village called Alkufa where no civilized man has been able to enter. We have gone to the moon, but no traveler has yet entered that small village. Up till now it has not been possible to locate this village. There is no doubt about its existence, because history mentions it and there are also maps available.
The location is hidden for a special purpose. When some Sufi reaches a deep state of consciousness during meditation, he finds the key to the path; he is able to visualize the whole of Alkufa. Otherwise, whatever maps are available are false, to misguide people. Many pilgrims from Europe have tried to reach Alkufa for the last three centuries. Many of them died before they could return. Those who did come back, didn’t reach the village but had just been roaming around.
One can reach only through a special meditation, during which Alkufa becomes manifest. Once he sees the place he caught a glimpse of in meditation the Sufi meditator walks to it. Alkufa is a secret holy place, more ancient than Islam. The places of pilgrimage which are well known and can be visited by any pilgrim are not the real ones; the real one is nearby, but hidden.
An interesting incident happened.... When Vinoba Bhave, Gandhi’s chief disciple, went to the Vishwanath temple in Benares. with harijans – India’s lowest caste – Karpatriji, an orthodox Brahmin scholar, said, ”You may enter, but now we shall have to make another temple, because this one has been desecrated.”
He actually began constructing another, because to him the old temple had become useless. Superficially, Vinoba seems a more understanding person than Karpatri. Karpatri was very traditional and ignorant of the modern world’s trends and knowledge. But regarding the deep secret that he was trying to support, he seems to be more knowledgeable.
The truth is that the Vishwanath temple is not the real one, and the one Karpatri wanted to have built instead of it, wouldn’t be the real one either. The real temple is a third one, which has to be kept hidden, otherwise any socio-religious reformer would desecrate it. The Vishwanath temple which is now standing is already desecrated. There is no difficulty in desecrating a temple; you can if you want to.
Any other temple being built there will also be false, but a false one will always have to be there so that the real one can remain hidden. There are secret keys, mantras, through which to enter Vishwanath temple, just as there are for Alkufa. Occasionally, some fortunate seeker, who has the knowledge about the mantra, may be able to enter, but otherwise pilgrims go to the false temple, worship there and return to their home. But this temple has developed a sort of sanctity over thousands of years, even though it is false, because for so long people have believed it to be the true one.
All religions have tried not to allow a person of another religion to enter their temples or places of pilgrimage. Why? Those who made those rules knew the dangers for such entrants. In a way, it is like a notice hanging on the entrance of an atomic energy laboratory, warning, ”No entry except for atomic scientists.” We agree that such restrictions are necessary – it is dangerous for non-scientists to enter – but when such restrictions are made in connection with a temple or place of pilgrimage, we don’t agree.
We do not know that they also have their own science. These temples and places of pilgrimage are meant for specialists. It is like a conference of doctors standing around a patient discussing his disease. The patient listens to them but can’t understand them because they are talking medical jargon, using Greek and Latin words. It is not in the interest of the patient to understand. Similarly, all religions have deve lopedtheir own code languages.
They have their secret holy places, their secret languages and secret scriptures. So what we understand to be places of pilgrimage are almost certainly not the right places. Such great traditions have to be preserved because if they fall into the wrong hands, they may be misused. Ordinary people will only get into difficulties and will not benefit from them. It is said that if you are allowed to enter the Sufi village of Alkufa you will become mad.
It is said that anyone entering accidentally will leave the village, mad, because Alkufa is full of vibrations which cannot be tolerated by the ordinary mind. So it is better not to enter the town without the necessary preparation and discipline.
It is said that it is not possible to sleep in Alkufa, so it is natural that those who haven’t experimented deeply in staying awake will go mad. The greatest accomplishment among Sufis is the night vigil; they keep awake the whole night. If a person does not eat for ninety days he will become very weak, but he will not die or go mad. An ordinary healthy man can easily fast for ninety days, but he cannot remain without sleep for even twenty-one days.
He can go without food for three months, but he cannot go without sleep for three weeks. Three weeks is a very long time – it is difficult to remain without sleep for even one week – but it is impossible to sleep at all in Alkufa.
A Buddhist bhikkhu was sent to me by someone from Sri Lanka. For three years this bhikkhu had not been able to sleep properly. The whole time his hands and feet were trembling, he was continuously perspiring and he was very disturbed. He was afraid to even take one step – he had lost all confidence in himself. He was almost deranged. Strong tranquillizers couldn’t help him sleep, but only lie down, listless; inwardly he was still awake.
I asked him if he had ever practised Buddha’s anapansati yoga, because for a Buddhist bhikkhu this practice is unavoidable. He said he was. So I told him that he should give up the idea of getting any sleep, because anapansati yoga is a practice which makes sleep impossible. But it is only the initial step in a practice; once it is impossible to sleep, there is another practice that must immediately be given. If you continue to do only the first part without this second step, you will become weak; you even may become mad and die.
Once sleep is destroyed from within, the quality of your consciousness changes so much that then further progress can be made. When I asked the bhikkhu if he knew the second phase of that practice he said no one had told him about it. The second part is not mentioned in any book, and writing about only the first part is dangerous because anyone who follows it will be unable to sleep.
This was the reason why things were kept hidden, so that they should not harm anyone. They were meant to guide those who need help in their spiritual search. This is why places of pilgrimages are necessary, but the real ones are kept hidden. The false places are created to keep you off the track until such a time when you are ready for the real. No wrong person should reach the authentic place, but the right person will always find it.
Every place of pilgrimage has its own key. If you want to find the pilgrimage place of the Sufis, you won’t be able to with the keys of the Jainas, and the Jaina places of pilgrimage can’t be found with the use of Sufi keys. Every religion has its own keys. I do not want to name it, but I shall tell you about the key of one place of pilgrimage.
The Tibetans have special mystical diagrams or yantras. These are keys. Hindus also have such instruments, thousands of them. In their houses, they write words like ”Labha-Shubha” – ”Prosperity and Goodness” – and they write some numbers underneath, without knowing why they are doing it. In their house there may be some such yantra, which can be the key to a place of pilgrimage. They have no idea what they have written, but they go on doing it only because their forefathers were doing it.
Every outwardly created figure creates a figure within your consciousness. For example, if you keep staring at your window for a few minutes and then close your eyes, you will see a negative impression of the window frame. Similarly, if you meditatively concentrate on some instrument, you will create within your mind a negative impression of its particular figure or its digits. These can be seen within after some special meditation practices. If you can invoke these images, then at such moments you can immediately begin your pilgrimage into the spiritual.
Related Osho Discourses:
Osho on Temple of Delphi
Mystery of Gautam Buddha coming as Maitreya
Osho - How do the Mountain Caves help in attaining Samadhi
Is Psychic or Spiritual Exploitation Possible in the Name of Shaktipat
Possibility of Psychic Binding between the Meditator and the medium in Shaktipat
How Devadatta Prevented attempted Reincarnation by Gautam Buddha as Maitreya
Sacred Places of Pilgrimage was a means to establish contact with Enlightened Souls
What is Shaktipat or Energy Transmission? How can Someone transmit Divine Energy?
Osho on Worthy Womb & Conditions for Higher Soul to take Birth (Secret of Jesus Birth)