Here’s the first of a series of articles by Prem Ritvik, a 23 year-old Indian sannyasin who’s recently come across Sannyas News and made his fresh presence felt. (N.B: Apologies for the imperfect lay-out, we’re not totally au fait with how the system works).
Many on the Sannyas News forum have said that 23 is a young age for someone to turn to Sannyas, or to speak as if many lives have been lived. Some even claim that such profiles are fake, as, in their perception, it is impossible to possess a lucid thinking capacity at such a young age.
How could those who happen to be sannyasins of a man who at the age of 21 (Buddha came at 35, Mahavira left home at 30, Jesus at 33) was at least 6.3 billion years old, and later in life spoke to those crossing the same milestone, to complete the crossing and go beyond enlightenment?
Osho aged infinitely. He aged eternally. Whatever number could be attributed to him was the number of a vehicle he possessed, his body, which followed natural biology.
Youth and Osho are one and same thing. The only condition is the youth we talk of has awakened or is in such a tryst. Osho remained youthful, a youth with age weighing on that of the universe. So alive, vibrant and changing with reality. If one has to write down a character sketch of Osho it is easy to see that age can never be any bar, not only to a seeker, but even to being a master.
The only person who could have aged across the universe before Osho’s physical age is Ashtavakra, if the story of him speaking from his mother’s womb is to be believed. The rest of the others are all possibly young arahats (those who do all for themselves but lack enough compassion to be bodhisattva or buddha) who did not venture out and remained unknown. Practically, as many times pointed out by Osho, if it is sex energy which plays a role in enlightenment, then we have a minimum age of 14.
Many in their old age, especially in the western hemisphere or surroundings influenced by a hedonistic culture (sense gratification) particularly find those in the 20-30 age group disrespectful. The age group is disrespectful, but observe, they are not only disrespectful to only you, they are disrespectful to themselves as well, they bear the pain of the same disrespect too.
The land of death, cremation or burial grounds are always well hidden in cities and shops that first make you insecure about your looks and then buy the the fancy dream they made you dream about. Quoting Osho, “The society does not want you to be wise, because a wise man is a dangerous man to its investments.”.
Wisdom is a rare flowering, but even a hint of the existence of wisdom becomes rare when the whole generation has hand-held dream continuation devices – mobiles.
Positively, wisdom happens, because “after all, as even in the darkest valley, the man is a self-forgotten Buddha, bearing the whole potential of remembrance.” These words would certainly be rejected by most of the population programmed on ambition, but none of the Buddhas created by Osho can overlook them.
Is this not the moment to remember that you are the Buddha and remove this weight of age from your head?
Ask yourself, how long do you plan to carry it? And when you have the answer (as a timespan), discover youth on the day you drop your age.
Youth is a discovery to be made, a Buddha to be lived. There is no youth in those who continue to sleep, except for in their dreams, and not very surprisingly, some might have slept for years in sannyasin clothes, dreaming they have become old enough to reject youth. In any clothes, dream is a dream, and youth awaits outside it.