Osho on Imitation - Imitation will make you very stupid, unintelligent
Question - Can not people learn by Imitating others?
Osho - THAT'S HOW PEOPLE LEARN, but that s how people remain stupid. too. The only way practiced hitherto is that of imitating others. That makes you knowledgeable but it does not make you intelligent. It makes you more informed but it does not release your wisdom. It will make you efficient as far as outer world is concerned -- you will become a better mechanic, a better technician -- but as far as the inner dimension is concerned you will become more and more stupid if you imitate.
There are things which are learned by imitation: for example, language you have to learn by imitation, otherwise you won't know any language. Science has to be learned through others. But the inner world is totally different; it follows a totally different law. There imitation is a barrier not a bridge, a wall not a bridge. There you have to learn on your own. But people go on doing the same kind of imitation in the inner world too, so they start imitating Buddha, they start imitating Jesus, they start imitating Mahavira, and they end up by being only carbon copies. They become more and more stupid. They cannot find their original face.
You can sit like a Buddha, you can close your eyes
like a Buddha, you can use the same posture, you can sit under the same
kind of tree, you can eat the same kind of food in the same quantity,
you can sleep the way Buddha used to sleep, get up at the time Buddha
used to get up -- you can do everything in the minutest detail exactly
like a Buddha, but it will be all acting; it won't make you an awakened
Cannot you observe that Jesus happened only once? And for two thousand
years, how many people have tried to imitate him? Millions. And how many
have become Jesus Christ? Not a single one. The same is true about
Zarathustra, about Lao Tzu, about Buddha, about Mahavira, about Krishna.
Not even a single person has been able to repeat, and it is not that
people have not tried; people have tried in every possible way. Millions
of people have tried to be like Buddha -- who would not like to be like
a Buddha? -- but they have all failed, utterly failed. Is it not a great
lesson to be learned?
Just open your eyes and see that God never creates two persons exactly
similar; he does not repeat. He is really a creator.
And why people imitate? -- because they don't trust their own intelligence. They are afraid that if they move on their own they may commit some mistake, so it is better to follow somebody who knows. That is the greatest mistake in life, to follow somebody who knows, because then you will never mature. One grows by committing many mistakes.
Commit as many mistakes as possible. Commit new mistakes every day -- be
inventive, be creative about mistakes. Just remember one thing: don't
create the same mistake again; that is not intelligent. But if you
commit the mistake for the first time it is beautiful, it is great,
because that will help you to grow; that will help you to find out who
you are. Just following somebody, even if you reach heaven it will not
be worth reaching. You will reach like a child; you will not be able to
enjoy, and you will remain foolish even there, and you will go on doing
your foolish things even in heaven. It is better to fall into hell but
remain unique, remain yourself; then even hell can be transformed into a
And in the world of freedom the first step is the last step too. You have to begin from the first step. If the first step is taken in slavery, the last step will also be part of it. The first step has to be taken in tremendous freedom. If you are here you are here on your own accord. If you are sannyasins it is your surrender, it is your own decision, it is your own commitment. I don't make any conditions on you and I don't want you to make any conditions on me from your side.
Just the other day I received a letter.. . The person asked for sannyas in such an aggressive way, as if he is doing some favor to me. And the way he writes the letter is not at all that of a man who wants to surrender, it is that of demand -- each word is violent. He says, "Give me sannyas today. I cannot wait. Either say yes or no. I don't want to follow Arup's suggestions; I don't want to do anything told by somebody else. You simply tell me whether you are going to give me sannyas today or not. This afternoon I want the answer!"
Now is this a way to be a sannyasin? This is for the first time in my
life I have said no to any person -- first time! I have given sannyas to
one hundred fifty thousand people; for the first time I had to say no.
Sadly I had to say no, because this is not the way. If you make
conditions, if you demand... today it is sannyas, after sannyas there
will be other things, that "Today I want enlightenment, this very
We can share. I can share whatsoever I have, but it is not an imposition on you. You are not to follow it, you have only to understand it. And if out of your understanding something starts happening in you, then you are the source of that happening, I am not the source of that happening. You need not even be grateful to me.
Source - Osho Book "Tao : The Golden Gate, Vol2"