Can anybody explain this contradiction? (1 post)

Topic tags: death, enlightenment, mahanirvana
  • Profile picture of Shanmugam Shanmugam said 2 years, 3 months ago:

    Osho has said that most of the time enlightenment and death happens at the same time and very rarely a few people have survived.(In the book ‘Hari om tat sat’ – talks given in 1988). But he has also said just the opposite in ‘Finger pointing to the moon’ (talks given in 1972) in which he says most of the enlightened people have continued to live and only few people have died.. What do you think of this contradiction?

    Here is the part from ‘Hari om tat sat’ :

    ” Most of the people who have become enlightened have died either immediately or within a few minutes or a few hours. The experience is so great, and the shock to the system of the body is unabsorbable. Out of thousands, perhaps a few have survived. And there are reasons why they survived.
    But they suffered tremendously from sicknesses. These are not sicknesses taken away from disciples, these are sicknesses intrinsic to the experience of enlightenment. Enlightenment means suddenly becoming aware that you are not the body, and a distance is created. The old identity that, “I am the body,” was keeping you together. You start falling apart. Mostly, the shock is so much that people have died.”

    Here is the part from ‘Finger pointing to the moon’:

    “Try to understand this. A jivanamukta will live in a state of liberation but around him the activities of his body and mind will continue. Nothing new will be fed, but until the old feelings are exhausted the activities will continue.

    Understand it this way. Suppose you decide to leave your body by fasting. You won’t die the very day you begin your fast, it will take at least about ninety days — it may take even longer, but ninety days are a minimum — before death can happen. Why? You fasted today, you should die today. But no, your body has an accumulation of flesh from the past and it will take about three months for that flesh to be consumed. You will have become just a skeleton of bones by then, all the flesh stored in the body will have been consumed. This is how when you fast for a day you lose weight by nearly by a pound. So the fatter a person, the longer he will last when fasting, because he has a larger accumulation of fat. Thus one goes on losing a pound or so every day, and you will not die while the stock of accumulated flesh lasts. It will take about three months.

    Similarly, when the consciousness is fully awake, one should attain to mahanirvana, the ultimate merging, at once. But that does not happen. Once in a while it has happened that way, but such events are very rare — as good as non-existent — that a person has died immediately upon becoming enlightened. It would be as if someone was already a skeleton, there was nothing at all of any accumulation, and the person died the very first day he fasted. It would mean that such a person was just ready to die, he had no savings at all. But it is difficult to find such a person; even a hungry beggar’s body keeps savings, some accumulated stock necessary for any emergencies. Such a coincidence may happen sometime that a person’s actions also come to completion at the same moment as enlightenment. It is, however, a very rare phenomenon.

    Normally they have stayed and lived for many years after enlightenment — be it Buddha or Mahavira or someone else. What is the reason for continuing to live? — because liberation has already happened. It is the burden of past action, its momentum, that goes on pushing the body ahead on the journey for some time. When that momentum is dissipated, jeevanamukti, the liberation while living, will become mahanirvana.”