Question: Osho, Could you please tell me your
opinion about J. Krishnamurti, who is saying that you won't be free and
therefore not happy as long as you follow any tradition, religion or master?
Osho: Wolfgang, Gautam The Buddha has divided the enlightened persons into two categories. The first category he calls the Arhatas and the second Bodhisattvas. The Arhataand the Bodhisattva are both enlightened; there is no difference between their experience, but the Arhata is not a Master and the Bodhisattva is a Master.
The Arhata has attained to the same truth but he is incapable of teaching it, because teaching is a totally different art. For example, you can see a beautiful sunset, you can experience the beauty of it as deeply, as profoundly as any Vincent van Gogh, but that does not mean you will be able to paint it. To paint it is a totally different art. Experiencing is one thing, helping others to experience it is not the same.
There have been many Arhatas but very few Bodhisattvas. The Bodhisattva is both enlightened and skillful to teach what has happened to him. It is the greatest art in the world; no other art can be compared with it, because to say the unsayable, to help people come out of their sleep, to find and invent devices to bring what has happened to him to those who are thirsty for it and help them to get it... it is a rare gift.
Krishnamurti is an Arhata, he is not a Bodhisattva. His enlightenment is as great as anybody else's enlightenment; he is a Buddha, a Jesus, a Lao Tzu. In enlightenment there are no degrees; either one is enlightened or one is not. Once a person is enlightened he has the same flavor, the same fragrance as anyone who has ever become enlightened or will ever become enlightened. But to relate the experience, to communicate the experience is not possible for all.
Once Buddha was asked, "How many people have become enlightened amongst your disciples?"
He said, "Many." He showed..."Look!" Manjushri was sitting by his side and Sariputra and Modgalyayan and Mahakashyap. He said, "These four people are right now present here -- they have become enlightened."
The inquirer asked, "If they have become enlightened why they are not so famous as you are? Why nobody knows about them? Why they don't have thousands of followers?"
Buddha said, "They have become enlightened but they are not Masters. They are Arhatas, they are not Bodhisattvas."
The Arhataknows it but cannot make it known to the others; the Bodhisattva knows it and can make it known to the others. Krishnamurti is an Arhata. Because of this he cannot understand the beautiful world of a Master and his disciples. You ask me, Wolfgang: Could You Please Tell me your Opinion About J. Krishnamurti, Who Is Saying That you won't be Free and Therefore not Happy as Long as you Follow any Tradition, Religion or Master?
He is right. If you follow a tradition, religion or Master -- remember the word "follow" -- you will not be free and you will not be blissful, you will not know the ultimate truth of life: by following nobody knows it. What can you do by following a tradition? You will become an imitator. A tradition means something of the past, and enlightenment has to happen right now! A tradition may be very ancient -- the more ancient it is, the more dead.
A tradition is nothing but footprints on the sands of time of the enlightened people, but those footprints are not enlightened. You can follow those footprints very religiously and they will not lead you anywhere, because each person is unique. If you remember the uniqueness of the person then no following is going to help you, because there cannot be a fixed routine.
That's the difference between science and religion: science depends on tradition. Without a Newton, without an Edison, there is no possibility for Albert Einstein to have existed at all. He needs a certain tradition; only on that tradition, on the shoulders of the past giants in the world of science, he can stand. Of course when you stand on the shoulders of somebody you can look a little farther than the person on whose shoulders you are standing, but that person is needed there.
Science is a tradition, but religion is not a tradition: it is an individual experience, utterly individual. Once something is known in the world of science it need not be discovered again, it will be foolish to discover it again. You need not discover the theory of gravitation -- Newton has done it. You need not go and sit in a garden and watch an apple fall and then conclude that there must be some force in the earth that pulls it downwards; it will be simply foolish. Newton has done it; now it is part of human tradition.
It can be taught to any person who has a little bit of intelligence; even schoolchildren know about it. But in religion you have to discover again and again. No discovery becomes a heritage in religion. Buddha discovered, but that does not mean you can simply follow the Buddha. Buddha was unique, you are unique in your own right, so how Buddha has entered into truth is not going to help you. You are a different kind of house; the doors may be in different directions. If you simply follow Buddha blindly, that very following will be misleading.
Traditions cannot be followed. You can understand them and understanding can be of immense help, but following and understanding are totally different things. So Krishnamurti is right when he is against following, but when he starts saying that you need not even understand, then he is wrong. Then he is speaking the language of an Arhata and he is unaware of the world of the Bodhisattva. Understanding is possible -- you can understand Buddha. What he is doing for forty years? What efforts has he been making for forty years?
How Wolfgang came to know Krishnamurti's ideas? He is trying to explain, he is trying with great effort to make you understand. You cannot follow Krishnamurti, but you can certainly understand his vision, his perspective, and that will be an enrichment. It will not bring you enlightenment, but it can be used as a stepping-stone. Krishnamurti says he is fortunate that he has not read any religious scriptures. That is not right.
In the first place it is not factual -- he has been taught when he was young all the ancient scriptures, not only of one tradition but of all the traditions, because he was brought up by theologists, Theosophists -- great synthesizers of all the paths and all the religions and all the traditions. Theosophy was one of the greatest efforts ever made to bring all the traditions closer to each other: Hinduism, Mohammedanism, Christianity, Judaism, Jainism, Buddhism, Taoism.
Theosophy was trying to find out the essential core of them all, and Krishnamurti was taught in every possible way all that is great. He may have forgotten about it, and I know that he must have forgotten because he will not lie, he will not say anything deliberately untrue. But he lived in a kind of hypnosis for twenty-five years. He was taken possession by the Theosophists when he was only nine years of age, and then he had been brought up m a very special way.
Many secret methods have been tried upon him: he has been taught while he was sleeping, he has been taught while he was in deep hypnosis, so he does not remember it at all. Only recently Russian psychologists are trying to find ways how to teach children while they are asleep, because if we can teach children while they are asleep much time can be saved. And one thing more: when a child is asleep he can be taught more easily because there is no distraction. His unconscious can be taught directly, which is easier.
When we teach a child through his consciousness it is difficult, because ultimately the teaching has to reach to the unconscious, only then it becomes yours. And to reach to the unconscious through the conscious it takes long time, long repetition. You have to go on repeating again and again and again, then only slowly slowly it settles to the bottom of the conscious, and from that bottom slowly it penetrates into the unconscious.
But in deep sleep, or more precisely in hypnosis -- hypnosis means sleep, deliberately created sleep -- you can reach directly to the unconscious; the conscious can be bypassed, and a thing can be put into the unconscious. The conscious will not know anything about it. Krishnamurti was taught all the great scriptures in a deep hypnosis; he has completely forgotten. Not only that: he has been even manipulated to write while he was in hypnosis.
His first book, At The Feet Of The Master, was written under hypnosis, hence he simply shrugs his shoulders when you ask about that first book -- which is really a rare document of immense value. But he simply says, "I don't know anything about it, how it happened. I can't say that I have written it." Krishnamurti has been experimented upon by Theosophists in many subtle ways, so he is not aware that he has been acquainted with all the great scriptures and all the great documents, and what he goes on saying has reflections of all those teachings They are there, but in a very subtle form.
He cannot quote the scriptures, but what he says is the very essence of the scriptures. A tradition has to be understood, and if you can understand many traditions, of course it will enrich you. It will not make you enlightened, but it will help you towards the goal, it will push you towards the goal. Don't be a follower of any tradition -- don't be a Christian or a Hindu or a Mohammedan. But it will be unfortunate if you remain unaware of the beautiful words of Jesus, it will be a sheer misfortune if you don't know the great poetry of the Upanishads.
It will be as if a person has not heard any great music -- Beethoven, Bach, Mozart, Wagner. If one has not heard, something will be missing in him. It will be a misfortune if you have not read Shakespeare, Milton, Dostoevsky, Kalidas, Bharbhuti, Rabindranath, Kahlil Gibran. If you have not been acquainted with Tolstoy, Chekhov, Maxim Gorky, something in you will remain missing. The same is true if you have not read Lao Tzu, Chuang Tzu, Lieh Tzu, Gautam Buddha, Bodhidharma, Baso, Lin Chi, Socrates, Pythagoras, Heraclitus.
These are very different, unique perspectives, but they will all help you to become wider. So I will not say that traditions are useless; I will say they become dangerous if you follow them blindly. Try to understand, imbibe the spirit. Forget the letter, just drink of the spirit. It is certainly dangerous to belong to a religion because that means you are encaged, imprisoned into a certain creed, dogma. You lose your freedom, you lose your inquiry, your exploration. It is dangerous to live surrounded by a small philosophy.
You will be a frog in the well; you will not know about the ocean. But to understand is a totally different phenomenon. The very effort to understand all the religions of the world will make you free of creeds and dogmas. That's what's happening here. I am talking about all the religions for the simple reason so that you don't become addicted with one standpoint. Life is multidimensional. Certainly Moses has contributed something to it which nobody else has done.
Unless you understand Moses you will miss that perspective, that dimension; that much you will be poorer.And the people who listen to Krishnamurti, they start following him! There are Krishnamurtiites who have been listening him for forty years or even fifty years. I have come across old people of the same age as Krishnamurti w ho have listened to him for fifty years, since 1930, and they have reached nowhere.
All that they have learned is a kind of negativeness: "This is wrong, that is wrong." But what is right? About that there seems to be not even a glimpse in their being. Don't become part of a religion, but visit, be a guest to all the religions. In the temple there is a beauty, in the mosque also, a different kind of beauty, in the church again a different experience. And this is our whole heritage; the whole humanity's past belongs to you. Why choose?
The follower chooses. He insists to be a Christian; he will avoid Upanishads, he will avoid Dhammapada, he will not bother about Koran. He is unnecessarily crippling himself, paralyzing himself. I also say don't follow, but I will not agree with the statement that: don't try to understand. Trying to understand is not following; your understanding becomes more clear, more sharpened. Krishnamurti goes on reading detective novels. Is hc following those detective novels? Is he trying to become a detective?
If he can read detective novels, what is wrong in reading the Upanishads? And detective novels are just ordinary, juvenile, childish. Upanishads are the Himalayan peaks of human consciousness. Don't follow them -- there is no need to follow anybody.
My sannyasins are not my followers, they are just my companions. The word satsang, the word upanishad, means the company of a Master. The disciple is a companion a fellow-traveler, and of course if you are traveling with somebody who knows the territory, who has explored the territory, your journey will become easier, your journey will become richer, your journey will have less unnecessary hazards; you will be able to reach the goal sooner than alone.
Traditions become dangerous only when you cling to them; then certainly there is danger. Traditions are group efforts to keep the unexpected from happening. If you become a part, then it is dangerous, because then the tradition becomes a hindrance to you for exploring. The tradition insists for belief -- believe in it and believe without inquiry. That's what people are doing, what Christians and Hindus and Mohammedans are doing -- believing into something they have never inquired.
And to believe into something without inquiring is very disrespectful towards truth and towards your own self. No, belief is not going to help -- only knowing can free you. And he says the same about a Master. It is true about ninety-nine so-called Masters, but it is not true about the one, the real one He is ninety-nine percent right, because wherever there are real coins there are bound to be false coins too. A tradition is dead; a religion is a philosophy, a belief, a dogma. If you believe in it, it appears significant; its arguments appear to be very great.
The moment you stand by the side and look with a detached view, you can see the foolishness, the stupidity. You can see that there are assumptions which have not been proved, not been established.
One morning a great philosopher was seen walking down the street touching every pole that he passed. Someone asked him, "Hey, professor, why are you touching all those poles?"
The philosopher grinned and said, "And why are you not touching all those poles?"
It is difficult to answer why you are not touching! The philosophers have their own arguments; you may not be able to argue against them. They may silence you; they may bring great proofs, logical arguments, rationalizations. They may silence you, but that is not going to help.
After giving a speech at Columbia University, the noted philosopher, Bertrand Russell, was answering questions from the audience. One student's critical question brought him to a full stop. For a whole minute he said nothing, his hand over his chin. Then he peered at the student and rephrased the question, making it more precise. He asked the student, "Would you say that this is still your question?"
The student answered delightfully, "Yes."
Again Lord Russell thought, this time even longer, and twice seemed about to speak. Then he said, "That's a very good question, young man. I don't believe I can answer it!"
But there are very few philosophers like Bertrand Russell who will accept that they can't answer. They will invent answers, they will go on and on creating proofs, inventing proofs. For every kind of nonsense you can find proofs, you can argue. Religions are all based on theologies, and the very word "theology" is a contradiction in terms. "Theo" means God, "logy" means logic -- logic about God. In fact, there is no logic about God; there is love but no logic. You can approach the phenomenon God or godliness through the heart, through love, but not through logic.