Osho on Ramakrishna Paramhansa and Keshav Chandra Sen
I have told you the story of Ramakrishna and Keshav Chandra Sen. Keshav
Chandra was one of the most intelligent people of his time. He founded a
religion just on his intellectual philosophy, brahmasamaj, the society for
God. And he had hundreds and thousands of intelligent people, a very
intelligent group, as his followers. And he was puzzled that this uneducated
Ramakrishna, who had not even completed the primary school – in India the
primary school, the lowest school, takes four years; he had done only
half.... Why were thousands of people going to this idiot?
That was in Keshav Chandra Sen’s mind. Finally he decided he had to go and
defeat this man, because he could not think that the man could not be
defeated by argument. That was impossible for him to imagine. This idiot
from a small village
is collecting thousands of people every day! From far and wide people are
coming to see him, and to touch his feet!
Keshav Chandra with his followers informed Ramakrishna: ”I am coming on such
and such a day to challenge you on every point in which you believe. Be
ready!” Ramakrishna’s followers were very much afraid.
They knew Keshav Chandra was a great logician; poor Ramakrishna would not be
able to answer anything. But Ramakrishna was very joyful, he danced. He
said, ”I have been waiting all this time. When Keshav Chandra comes that
will be a great day of joy!”
His disciples said, ”What are you saying? That will be a day of great
sadness, because you cannot argue with him.”
Ramakrishna said, ”Wait. Who is going to argue with him? I don’t need to
argue. Let him come.” But his disciples were shaky, very shaky, very much
afraid that their master was going to be defeated, completely crushed. They
knew Keshav Chandra. In that century there was no parallel to Keshav
Chandra’s intelligence in this country.
And Keshav Chandra came with one hundred of his topmost disciples to see the
argument, the debate, the challenge. Ramakrishna was standing on the road to
receive him, far away from the temple where he used to live. And he hugged
Keshav Chandra. And Keshav Chandra felt a little embarrassed, and that
embarrassment went on growing.
Ramakrishna took his hand in his hand and took him inside. He said, ”I have
been waiting and waiting for years. Why did you not come before?”
Keshav Chandra said, ”He seems to be a strange man, seems not to be afraid
at all. Do you understand? I have come here for a discussion!”
Ramakrishna said, ”Of course.”
So they sat near the temple by the side of the Ganges, a beautiful place,
under a tree.
And Ramakrishna said, ”Start.”
So Keshav Chandra asked him, ”What do you say about God?”
Ramakrishna said, ”Have I to say anything about God? Can’t you see God in my
Keshav Chandra looked a little puzzled – ”What kind of argument is this?”
And Ramakrishna said, ”Can’t you feel God in my hand? Come closer, boy.”
And Keshav Chandra said, ”What kind of argument...?”
He had been in many debates, he had defeated many great scholars, and this
villager... In Hindi the word for idiot is gamar, but it actually means the
villager. gaon means village, and gamar means from the village. But gamar is
used as stupid, retarded, idiot.
Ramakrishna said, ”If you can understand the language of my eyes, if you can
understand the energy of my hand, you are proof enough that existence is
intelligent. Where have you got your intelligence from?”
This was a grand argument. He was saying, ”If you have got this great
intelligence – and I know you are a highly intelligent person; I have always
loved you – tell me from where it comes? If existence is without
intelligence you cannot get it. From where? You are the proof that existence
is intelligent, and that is what I mean by God. To me God is not somebody
sitting on a cloud. To me God simply means existence is not unintelligent.
It is an intelligent universe; we belong and we are needed. It rejoices in
our rejoicings, it celebrates in our celebrations, it dances with our dance.
Have you seen my dance?” – and he started dancing.
Keshav Chandra said, ”What to do!”
But he danced so beautifully. He was a good dancer, because he used to dance
in the temple sometimes from morning till evening – no coffee break! He
would dance and dance till he would fall on the ground.
So he started dancing with such joy and such grace that suddenly there was a
transformation in Keshav Chandra. He forgot all his logic, he saw the beauty
of this man, he saw the splendor of this man, he saw a joy which he had
All that intellect, all those arguments were just superficial, inside there
was utter emptiness. This man was so overflowing.
He touched the feet of Ramakrishna and said, ”Forgive me. I was absolutely
wrong about you. I know nothing, and I have been just philosophizing. You
know everything, and you are not saying a single word.”
Ramakrishna said, ”I will forgive you only on one condition.”
Keshav Chandra said, ”Any condition from your side. I am ready.”
Ramakrishna said, ”The condition is that once in a while you have to come to
discuss with me, to debate with me, to challenge me.”
This is the way of a mystic; and Keshav Chandra was completely finished. He
became a totally different man; he started to come every day. Soon his
disciples deserted him: ”He has gone mad. That madman infected him so much.
There was only one madman, now there are two. He is even dancing with him.”
But Keshav Chandra, who had been a sad man, grudging, complaining about
everything, because he was living in a negative space, suddenly blossomed,
flowers came to his being, a new fragrance. He forgot all logic. This man
helped him have a taste of something that is beyond mind. Zen is the method
to go beyond mind. So we will be discussing God and Zen together. God has to
be negated, and Zen has to be planted deep in your being. The lie has to be
destroyed and the truth has to be revealed. That’s why I have chosen God and
Zen together. God is a lie, Zen is a truth.
is Dead, Now Zen is the Only Living Truth" by Osho
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Ramakrishna Teachings Blog
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