Silence, real and not so real?

This was sent to SN as being a superior text to that of  Dr Saksena’s son,  who it seems may never have sat with Osho, though we dont know that for a fact.  We wondered if  the text was a spoof. But apparently not. If not, it sounds somewhat self-congratulatory and even born of a superiority complex. .
What do the punters say?!
One evening two thousand of us sat with folded legs on cushions in a vast oval hall with a marble floor and walls of mosquito netting. High overhead arched a roof made of tough fabric supported by metal beams. The tropic darkness clung closely to the structure, but we sat in soft light from suspended fixtures. As we sat, silent ourselves, we heard rustlings from thick stands of bamboo outside, and from far away the blatting of rickshaw horns and the rumble of trucks.
We were listening. We had become listening; and it was really more like drinking. In front of us on a low dais a man sat in a chair, and he was speaking. And in between his words and phrases silence vibrated like a drum and crept down into our cells and gave us something we’d always been thirsty for. We were great hollow wells being filled from somewhere mysterious…Where does ground water come from? Whence comes light from the sky? We wells took both into us and the rain too – soft raining sounds like nature gives us, but filled with light. How can I say it? Love and bliss flowed into our hearts and buoyed us and expanded our auras and gave us something to sit upon, to see the stretching reaches of, to drink.
And so we ourselves did not rustle. It’s like, if you are drinking water you do not simultaneously jiggle about, cough, sneeze, or snore; it would interfere with getting the life-giving stream down your throat and into you where it can spread out and do its work of rehydration. And so unlike people in audiences everywhere we did not do those fidgety things, and we made no sound. The hall was filled with the reaching of souls towards silence, for that is what the speaker’s words contained.
I was in perhaps the third row, to the speaker’s left. As I sat bathed in the vapors of Indian air and the stillness of all of us and the flowings of my own energies rising and the breathing of the tall trees outside, I suddenly felt a movement in my lap. A small pressure, a weight on the fabric of my clothes transferring to my skin’s sensors. I opened my eyes downwards and saw looking up at me a wee grey being with a pink flesh flower on its nose, with petals like a little propeller. It stretched its neck up towards my face and the flower twitched. I looked back at it and I did not make a sound. My posture stayed exactly as it was. I took in the surprise of both of us, and I watched the movement the surprise made in my inner world without reacting outwardly whatsoever. My mind quickly computed the creature’s probable identity, and I don’t know if the creature computed mine.
He got down off my lap then and went along the row of meditators to the next person, an Italian woman of generous curves, and he climbed into her lap and gazed up at her like a cat does when it is feeling curious or confiding. I had slanted my gaze sideways and I watched as the woman opened her eyes, took in the situation, and moved not a muscle nor made a sound. And the little animal made his way like a mountaineer down off her lap and on to the next person. For all I know he had gone to many before me. Nobody squeaked like a rodent, nobody flailed, nobody screamed, nobody did a single thing but stay absolutely still, observe, and continue to just be.

And I closed my eyes again and went back into my inner space.

Madhuri

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62 Responses to Silence, real and not so real?

  1. Arpana says:

    Bet Frank wrote that!!

  2. shantam prem says:

    Neither Arpana can write such a delicious text nor faceless frank!

  3. Kavita says:

    Very pictorial writing, I enjoyed this read.

    Seems written by an English educated, non-Indian seeker/visitor who after writing this took sannyas.

    Now I am wondering if that was a squirrel (creature’s probable identity)!

    Actually, it sounds more like comparing an apple to a pear.

  4. Parmartha says:

    “A wee grey being”…bit like fairies at the bottom of the garden.

    I did not find the piece, whether a spoof or not, at all convincing. I thought it idealised formal ‘meditation’.

    Actually, what I got from Osho was that ‘being in meditation’ was nothing to do with formal sitting, or apparent contrived silence. It was just something that after a while followed you around into everything you did, and in that way formal mediation of any sort dropped away.

    • madhu dagmar frantzen says:

      No need to be convinced, Parmartha; maybe a walk in the greenery with – by grace – all open senses next-nearby, would also do, on Friday late afternoon or at any other time?

      And another one:
      What about remembering how and when you consciously started the journey, when younger?
      Your first “Ahas”, “Wows” or “Eurekas” etc., if there have been any of that kind?

      Just for compassion´s stake, how about it?
      As you are not alone in that form, whatsoever.

      Madhu

  5. shantam prem says:

    “Actually what I got from Osho was that ‘being in meditation’ was nothing to do with formal sitting, or apparent contrived silence.”

    Parmartha dear, whole of India knew this before you got from your Osho. Do you think five million Pune inhabitants were coward and non-meditators who simply ignored Osho and his work and teachings?

    The lady, now 65, who has written this piece is not an Indian one but very articulate and graceful western who has spent considerable time in all the phases of Osho´s work.

    It is not sometimes but most of the time, grapes which one has not tasted or cannot taste become sour.

    • Parmartha says:

      No, they were not cowards, just totally uninterested in a Mystic living in their midst. As is the case for 98% of everyone alive also today.

      I found the ‘story’ of the visiting squirrel verged on some kind of very amusing and childish fantasy, and silly wish fulfilment.

      If such a thing happened then it had to have been to those sitting in the third row..!

      Frankly, seeing you seem so impressed it gives something away about your good self…but enough today of that….

      • kusum says:

        One squirrel used to sit on a tree every day behind Buddha Hall during discourse & occasionally wandered around in Buddha hall, also sometimes jumping on people’s laps. In the beginning there was some commotion in audience but then Osho spoke about the squirrel & joked that it was a meditator & asked not to be disturbed.

    • satyadeva says:

      “Parmartha dear, whole of India knew this before you got from your Osho.”

      Well, it depends on what you mean by ‘knowing’ things, doesn’t it, Shantam? Are you sure you’re not merely getting this from hearsay or – Heaven forbid! – mere books?

      For instance, is “being in meditation”, which you claim “the whole of India knew”, the case in your own ongoing experience? If not, then you yourself certainly don’t actually “know” what you’re talking about here, do you, as it’s not a reality in your life (just like countless millions of your ‘spiritually very knowledgeable’ compatriots)?

      • shantam prem says:

        Satyadeva, you can tease me about meditation hundreds of times, I won´t tell how much bank balance I have! If you think you are richer, well and good.

        If you think meditation makes people meek and humble and you are one, that too is well and good.

        What to say about people who buy leg pieces in Tesco and think it is Chicken?!

        • satyadeva says:

          You miss the point, Shantam, by putting up irrelevant smokescreens to divert attention (Including, I suspect, yours).

          People often say they “know” something when it’s merely on a superficial, mental level, not part of their life experience. If “the whole of India” had really ‘known’ the nature of meditation then it would be a completely different sort of country, wouldn’t it? And if you yourself really ‘knew’ that then you wouldn’t be hiding behind such self-defensive nonsense here.

          • shantam prem says:

            “People often say they “know” something when it’s merely on a superficial, mental level, not part of their life experience. If “the whole of India” had really ‘known’ the nature of meditation then it would be a completely different sort of country, wouldn’t it?”

            Sannyas too would have been a different sort of collective, wouldn´t it? Sannyasins are the ones who brag maximum about meditation.

            Just look at this string, one lady has described an evening of meditation with two thousand people, and knives are out: “how it can be meditation?”

            It seems our praise and judgement has no value; when cosmic laws judge they do this in an impartial way, without favour or malice.

            • satyadeva says:

              “Sannyas too would have been a different sort of collective, wouldn´t it? Sannyasins are the ones who brag maximum about meditation.”

              Some common sense might come in handy here, Shantam.

              Sannyas is a relatively recent ‘work in progress’, its collective state and that of its ‘members’ can hardly be compared with those of India and Indians after thousands of years of religious history!

              Interesting you use the word “brag”. It’s just the sort of put-down that might be used by someone whose scepticism is born of jealousy and/or sheer lack of understanding and personal experience – or even interest.

    • madhu dagmar frantzen says:

      “The lady, now 65, who has written this piece is not an Indian one but very articulate and graceful western who has spent considerable time in all the phases of Osho´s work.” (Shantam Prem).

      Do you know the author personally, Shantam Prem? Is she one of your facebook friends?
      Just curious.

      Madhu

      • shantam prem says:

        Yes, Madhu, I know this lady not as personal friend but facebook friend whose presence I have admired all the time in Pune.

        I was one of the youngest in age during Pune 2 phase and have been inspired by hundreds of western Mas and Swamis. Me as an Indian felt fulfilled to see my country being the host to such seekers.

        Because facebook is an open platform, it is not against etiquette to write her name. Madhuri Akin is the Ma. Right now she is sharing her experiences even from Rajneeshpuram days. She has her banner ad at oshonews, as I presume you have no profile at facebook.

  6. frank says:

    I don`t know why, but the piece reminds me of ‘Squatter and the Ant’.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MMd7MjE8uf0

    • Kavita says:

      You cruel rascal, you, Frank!

    • Parmartha says:

      Frank,
      Difficult to put this strange piece into some kind of context, but this link sure helped!

      • madhu dagmar frantzen says:

        “Difficult to put this strange piece into some kind of context, but this link sure helped!” ( Parmartha)

        What did it help you for – or within, Parmartha ?

        I am genuinely interested in your response to my question ; as I decided only late, ( after having read Kavita´s response to it, I´d wanted to surpass it, but then your statement…) to watch that kind of crap.
        And it´s you , yourself, Parmartha , who chose that thread topic text, as an invitation for us all.

        And now I am asking myself, if we readers and contributers all ´pass a test´, you invented/ propose ?
        Declaring 98% of the ´everyones of today´totally disinterested in a Mystic in their midst, you seem to be very sure, that you belong to the ´chosen few´ ?

        However, the latter has been one of the strong challenges of the Master to puff up our so called ´spiritual ego´with the then mostly sooner but later following up challenges to crush the before ´puffed-ups´ sustainabely (?): Just one of His Master pieces of Being with us , I would say.

        I am wondering, what it´s up to – (happening) here ?

        Madhu
        P.S. for Kavita:
        As Madhira, the author (?), spoke of a little creature with petals like a propeller, I´ve been more reminded of a dragonfly than of a squirrel, quite fascinating creatures they are.

        Anyway, sitting in Silence together in that place and space with all that Nature around had at times pure magic, and some of that magic the author gives words to.

        • Kavita says:

          “P.S. for Kavita:
          As Madhira, the author (?), spoke of a little creature with petals like a propeller, I´ve been more reminded of a dragonfly than of a squirrel, quite fascinating creatures they are.”

          Now I am wondering how the dragonfly could have “gazed up at her like a cat does when it is feeling curious.”!

  7. Parmartha says:

    This phrase in the piece…
    “We had become listening; and it was really more like drinking.”

    This seems like self-aggrandisement. Also, I don’t think it was true. In self-description the ego always lurks.

    • shantam prem says:

      Parmartha, please listen and watch videos of those days, you may feel Osho himself using “self-aggrandisement” phrases for such evenings:
      “You are the most blessed people on Earth to be here at this time.”
      or
      “This is the last-ditch effort to preserve the flame of East. Otherwise, West has taken over the whole planet.”
      Such kind of sentiments echo in my memory.

      Naturally, those who were not there won´t accept they missed an experience.

      Yes, these are experiences and participants felt the vacuum and many went in search for in the satsangs of This or That.

      • frank says:

        That`s the trouble with all this enlightenment lark. The disciples, by their own self-definition, quite literally, can`t know what they`re talking about.

        They accuse each other of ‘having egos’ while they`ve still got one, and ‘missing’ what they themselves haven’t ‘hit’ anyway.

        “Folly is an endless maze.”

        • Arpana says:

          And the rest, especially the last line:

          The Voice of the Ancient Bard

          “Youth of delight come hither.
          And see the opening morn,
          Image of truth new born.
          Doubt is fled & clouds of reason
          Dark disputes & artful teazing.
          Folly is an endless maze,
          Tangled roots perplex her ways.
          How many have fallen there!
          They stumble all night over bones of the dead
          And feel they know not what but care;
          And wish to lead others when they should be led.”

        • Arpana says:

          In the period leading up to taking Sannyas, if anybody said anything that put my back up, I reacted and beat myself up because I thought I was being egotistical; and never crossed my mind at the time that might be true of them.

          So, as far as I can make out, I developed an ego about having an ego, was egotistical about having an ego, as if I was the only individual in the whole world who did. (How’s that for ego? The definitive opposite of Lokesh, who has ego about not having an ego).

          • Lokesh says:

            Poor Arpie, still sucking those nippy sweeties and dreaming about me, even though I have not really put in an appearance on SN in some time.
            Now he thinks I have an ego about not having an ego. Sounds like a throwback to the seventies when such mumbo jumbo was par for the donkey course.

            Really, Arpie, you come across like someone stuck in a decades old time warp. I know what you mean, but I really can’t relate to it. I rarely think in terms of ego or non ego. I have moved on from such a simplistic take on how people, including myself, work. We are complex beings inhabiting a complex world. It is too easy to put it all down to ego trips.

            Besides, there is little value in trying to work out who other people are. We only understand others to the extent that we understand our self. Sounds like you should spend less time sucking on nippy sweeties and more time on your homework.

        • kusum says:

          Child is born with ego. Without ego, without self-respect, self-care humans cannot survive. What is wrong with ego???

          • frank says:

            There`s nothing wrong with my ego.

            It`s everyone else`s that is the problem.

          • Kavita says:

            In my observation, a child is not born with ego, it’s created by firstly giving it a name, and after that ego goes on developing, then it becomes necessary to go on feeding it until it realises that it’s also possible to be without it, but mostly a master is needed to point that out.

            • kusum says:

              Kavita, Mind & Ego are completely two different issues.

              • Kavita says:

                Kusum dear, I see first ego comes then the other conditionings of the mind follow. Of course, my word is not the last word.

                It’s like saying child is the father of man.

                • kusum says:

                  Ego is sort of feeling, impression…& Mind is nothing but collection of knowledge, conditioning & thinking machine which can be moulded any way one wants. That’s how brainwashing people work on weak people’s minds, whether it is religions or cultures. Only awareness takes one beyond illusions.

                • Kavita says:

                  So does this mean one is born with feelings, impressions..? Can you explain that, if possible?

    • satchit says:

      Parmartha, the ego lurks everywhere.

      How is it? Have you been on holiday that on the Saksena book case
      some sannyasnews-we did respond?

      MOD:
      Satchit, YOUR 2ND PARAG. ISN’T CLEAR, PLEASE CLARIFY!

  8. Tan says:

    I loved this piece from Madhuri! And what she described about the creature is very accurate!

    Sorry, guys, but this happens!

    I don’t know if it happens to everybody, I don’t know if it has to do with meditation or if it is a ‘mind thing’. It happened to me, I relate to “a small pressure on the lap”. Exactly what happened to me! But with a different creature.

    Differently from Madhuri, I experienced fear, maybe because Osho wasn’t present while it happened, but just for a moment!

    Many things Osho didn’t talk about! And I wonder why!

    Cheers!

  9. Kavita says:

    ” “You are the most blessed people on Earth to be here at this time.”
    or
    “This is the last-ditch effort to preserve the flame of East. Otherwise, West has taken over the whole planet.”
    Such kind of sentiments echo in my memory.

    Naturally, those who were not there won´t accept they missed an experience.

    Yes, these are experiences and participants felt the vacuum and many went in search for in the satsangs of This or That.”

    Even though I have not been physically there during those or any discourses, I/many who listened to/heard Osho later in Buddha Hall also felt that sentiment, but how many are stuck with that sentiment like you are? It’s something to ponder about.

    I sometimes can’t believe you can be so stuck up; probably if you let this sentiment not be forced onto everyone, there is a chance maybe things may change according to your choice or if that does not happen at least you will save all that energy which anyway is not being acknowledged by persons who actually should be listening. Maybe it’s worth experimenting .

    Shantam, if I have said anything which you disapprove of please share it here, if possible.

  10. sw. veet (francesco) says:

    I feel very envious of you who were there in the years of the rat.

    At that time I was cowardly detached like 98% of today’s people, or like Pune’s always, ignorant of meditation like the Indians, apart from those who know Shantam.

    I can see all of you doing the same things of today with the grace and freshness of the best years.

    Parmartha with his social experiments releases the rodent among the sannyasins, betting on the impassibility of the wee grey being.

    Someone in the fourth row whispering to Arpana who has something on his back and he reacts by slapping himself.

    I can see the girl who does not trust even her sauerkraut Jungian seller to open her eyes occasionally to check the efficiency of the mousetraps from which she is surrounded.

    The young Lokesh says something to the mouse ear about Frank, his alter ego, through which he knows himself, a perfect being.

    This lab is my sangha, and I love it, meow….

    • Arpana says:

      That you weren’t there, VF, is a non-issue.
      Your idea that you have missed is the problem.
      All our ideas, whatever they are, are the problem – probably even that idea.

      • sw. veet (francesco) says:

        Is it a problem or issue to have no idea what you are talking about? ;)

        • Lokesh says:

          Veet, neither, it’s understandable.

          To move on to a deeper level of incomprehensibility. check out Madhu’s Jungle Book story, while sitting around a virtual camp fire. Unbeatable!

        • Arpana says:

          Only if you think so:)

        • madhu dagmar frantzen says:

          Hi Veet Francesco,
          Quite right, my viewing (experiencing) your response put as story telling about processes here in the UK/SN chat, interpreting some roles and characters in a “lab” as you put it, my viewing is neither your issue nor your problem.

          So far, Lokesh, coming so eagerly and immediately ´in-between´ is quite right.

          And that´s all by now about my difficulties/trial and error stuff, to relate in a chat (´disembodied´, one can say) through words here and trying to relate.

          Madhu

    • madhu dagmar frantzen says:

      In the Jungle Book (motives by R. Kipling) it seemed to be the snake to sing a lullaby for ´trust me, trust meee´ in order to hypnotise her ´dinner´.

      Here – with you, Veet Francesco – there comes along this witty, very talented poetry-slam(ming) cat, looking for a dinner in a lab, although already sufficiently well fed (I guess).

      What a nice story.

      Welcome,

      Madhu

      P.S:
      As you and me are probably knowing, Arpana´s lines already hit the target.
      But I love to sit around a virtual camp fire and listen to stories – what to do…?

      • sw. veet (francesco) says:

        Hi, Madhu,
        It’s nice for once to see you relaxed and not feel yourself a target, a bit of conformism is forgivable when Arpana claims to be a sophist, playing with possessive pronouns.

        Usually, you all, otherwise Austrian, are vaccinated at the call to arms.

        MOD:
        VF, WHAT DOES THE LAST SENTENCE MEAN, PLEASE?

        • madhu dagmar frantzen says:

          What a pathetic display, Veet Franceso.

          If – by chance – my mails to the Chat I´ve been sending hours ago are to be read soon (by chance) you can forget about your (again) ´military’ stance…

          If you look into the mirror before shaving, you might see an “otherwise Austrian” in the mirror yourself? That might not be that comfortable, I guess.

          Madhu

  11. madhu dagmar frantzen says:

    Re the topic, included in the topic:
    The Silence we can talk of is not the Silence. Everybody knows that.
    We are very talkative about its obstacles, aren´t we? In endless self-talks, ratings, fights etc.

    Once in a while, a poet, a musician, a painter, a sculptor, a fabulous
    storyteller happens to have touched that inner realm and brought something to the surface, where we can have a glimpse of that, what some sages speak of when they talk of a full emptiness. An abundant creativity, a source.

    Another way to describe a touch of such(ness) are its very peace generating ripples, which are recognisable (by chance): A non ‘painted’ smile or other gestures to welcome you as a stranger.

    Strangers we all are. What better can show up with the latter than a virtual chat?

    I´d like to subscribe to what Lokesh shared yesterday: “Besides, there is little value in trying to work out who other people are. We only understand others to the extent that we understand our self.”
    However, to come to know about the healing and creative sources a Silence of that quality is inhabiting in essence is a strong invitation, isn´t it? One of the ‘goodies’.

    And needed.

    Madhu

  12. sw. veet (francesco) says:

    Nothing joins people more than the common threat, even if it’s just that of a cat.

    It’s nice to see my people (Pune 1) again in harmony around the camp fire, finally with the same idea about the cat, singing the same doggerel.

    http://lyricstranslate.com/it/alla-fiera-dellest-eastern-fair.html

    • madhu dagmar frantzen says:

      You like to misunderstand again, Veet Francesco. Discouraging that nothing can be done about it.

      What kind of ´agenda´ you seem to have about (in your view): ´Pune I people´.

      I am sorry about that.

      Madhu

  13. sw. veet (francesco) says:

    In the previous comment I preferred to joke on punters’ comments because being in English I can not recognize if the article is a parody, if the author is self-congratulatory or afflicted by a sense of superiority.

    Only some generic consideration to give an assertive perspective to my previous irony, reiterating my intention of laughing ‘with’ and not ‘about’ someone.

    For me, the first point is whether it is possible to describe the silence in words, if parody is always a lurking danger that one chooses to run, appearing self-congratulatory or egoically hypertrophied.

    If the experience told by Madhuri is what I imagine, silence is just one of the ‘indescribable’ aspects, with thoughts and time that stop, without which the ego can not exist.

    Trying to translate an experience made of the absence of words and thoughts, using words and thoughts that after that experience come back to mark our (?) Egoic time, all this may create in the listener opposite reactions, approaching or moving away from the shared experience.

    Sometimes our awkward voices are our only tools, the awareness of these limits is the sign of our love and courage in wanting to share that beauty anyway.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WD8zSD6lEc8

    Ciao,

    VF

  14. sw. veet (francesco) says:

    Lokesh,
    Can you tell me if Arpana is not just “understandable” but also ‘wrong’, as when he talks about your ego?

  15. Arpana says:

    You have made my day, Swami Veet Francesco. Thank you. :) :) :) :)

  16. Lokesh says:

    Hi, Veet,
    In answer to your question, I do not see any wrong or right in it. Talking about people’s egos strikes me as a bit old hat. I rarely use the word ‘ego’ in conversation. I think there is a lot more to the human condition than boiling it down to ego.

    As for Arpana talking about my ego, I can’t take anything the man says to or about me seriously, at best stopping for a moment to reflect is about the extent of it. If Arpana has nothing better to do than talk about my ego, that is his business, not mine.

    A few months back I read an Osho quote that stayed with me. It was about life being short and not wasting one’s time. I took that to heart.

  17. Arpana says:

    I never use the word ‘ego’ in conversation, Lokesh.

    Pointing out your over-weaning self-importance, ie egotism, is not conversation.

    Super that you don’t take me seriously.

    Next step: Stop taking yourself so seriously.

  18. Lokesh says:

    Arpana says, “I never use the word ‘ego’ in conversation, Lokesh.”
    No surprises in his mechanical and predictable reaction. Perhaps it was his haste to deliver it that caused him to overlook the fact that I actually said “rarely” and not “never”. Saying “never” would have made it too easy for him.

    There is a lesson there for all of us.