Love is Nourishment in Itself

Osho_quote Love

Talk given by Osho to a group of his students in December 1987

(The talk begins with one of the students asking Osho a question)

“Beloved Master, can you please talk about the art of nourishing oneself with Love? I feel so much love for you! Is this enough?”

Osho answers with the following:

Deva Bhasha, love is never enough. There are mysteries in existence which don’t have any limitation. Love is the closest experience to understanding all those mysteries – because as far as the mind is concerned, it imposes limits; it cannot accept anything that is unlimited.

Just think of the whole universe. The mind can conceive of it as very vast, perhaps the boundaries of it are not available to us, but the mind finds it intrinsically impossible to conceive that there may be no boundaries at all, anywhere.

The universe has no boundaries; life has no boundaries.

And love is our closest experience of this unbounded, unlimited pure space, extending and extending and you never come to the point where it is written, ”This is the end.”

Because of this intrinsic incapacity of the mind, it always inquires, ”Is it enough?” It wants it to be enough so that it can create a boundary around it. Anything that can be limited by the mind becomes an object. Love is not an object. You cannot put it on the scientist’s table to dissect it, to find out what basic elements it is made of.

Because the scientist cannot make love objective, there are only two possibilities for him. If he is authentic and sincere, he will say, ”I do not know love,” because his way of knowing is only objective and love cannot be reduced to an object. But if he is not a sincere scientific mind but a fanatic, then rather than accepting his own ignorance he will deny the existence of love itself. He will say it is all imagination, it is all emotion, it is all sentimentality; it is not even worth considering.

There is not even a single treatise on love written by any scientist. But that is his general attitude about love, about life, about consciousness – anything that he cannot hold in his hand, he simply denies its very existence. You cannot ask a scientist, ”Does beauty exist? Is there something like blissfulness? Is there a possibility of an inner ecstasy?” His answer is going to be consistently ”No.” Basically, he denies the inner world of man.

And the most hilarious part is that scientists fall in love, scientists feel hurt if insulted. If there is nobody inside, what does it matter whether somebody insults you, abuses you? And if love is not existential, then no scientist should dare to fall in love. But the scientist is not just a one-dimensional being; science is not his whole life, and cannot be.

Life contains many dimensions. The most important is the fact, the interiority, of man. And the interiority of man is as infinite as the exterior universe.

Love is part of the interiority of man; it has no limits. But there are misunderstandings which have to be clarified.

Deva Bhasha, your question is, ”Can you talk about the art of nourishing oneself with love?” There is no art because there is no need of any effort. Love is the nourishment. But humanity has been so confused by its leaders that one does not know the most inner realms of one’s own being. Love is nourishment in itself. The more you love, the more you will find untrodden spaces where love goes on and on spreading around you like an aura.

But that kind of love has not been allowed by any culture. They have forced love into a very small tunnel: you can love your wife, your wife can love you; you can love your children, you can love your parents, you can love your friends. And they have made two things so deeply rooted in every human being. One is that love is something very limited – friends, family, children, husband, wife. And the second thing they have insisted is that there are many kinds of love. You love in one way when you love your husband or your wife; then you have to bring another kind of love when you love your children, and another kind of love when you love your elders, your family, your teachers, and then another kind of love for your friends.

But the truth is, love cannot be categorized the way it has been categorized throughout the whole history of mankind. There were reasons for them to categorize it but their reasons are ugly and inhuman, because in this categorization they killed love.

Either you can have a loving heart… it has nothing to do with who you are loving; the emphasis of existence is that you are loving. It has not to be directed towards a certain person, because that is accepting that if someone is not part of the direction in which you are forcing your love to move, you become indifferent to them; you become even unloving to them. There are possibilities that you may even become hateful to them.

The reason why all the cultures have insisted on categorization is because they have been very much afraid of love, is because if there is existential love, then it does not know boundaries – then you cannot put Hindus against Mohammedans, then you cannot put Protestants against Catholics. Then you cannot draw a line saying that you cannot love this person because he is Jewish, Chinese. The leaders of the world wanted to divide the world, but to divide the world they have to do the basic division which is of love. Love is only for our people.

And it has to be insisted so deeply in your unconscious that in wars, in riots, when you kill other people who don’t belong to your clan or to your country or your tribe, you don’t feel anything. It is simply the way things are. A German killing an Italian will not think, ”I don’t have any personal enmity with him, and just as my wife will be waiting for me and my old mother may be praying for me and my children will be hoping that soon I will be back home, the person I am killing is in the same situation. He also has a wife, he also has old parents, he also has children, and they are waiting for him to come back. I don’t have any reason to kill him; neither has he any reason to kill me, except that some idiotic politicians are not satisfied with the power they have. They want more power. They want to be world conquerors.”

Because of this lust for power, love has been completely destroyed. Both cannot exist together.

I want it to be absolutely clear to you:   Lust for power and the beauty of love cannot exist together.

But religions would like you only to love people of your own religion – others are foreigners. Countries would like you to love only the people who live in that country. And you can see, there are divisions upon divisions.

India became independent in 1947. I was very young, but I had kept my eyes clear and uncontaminated by the older generation. From my very childhood I have insisted on having my own insight, my own intelligence, and I don’t want to borrow any knowledge from anybody.

My whole family was involved in the struggle for the freedom of the country. Everybody had been in jail. Although I was never in jail because of the liberation movement, I suffered as much as one can suffer, because all the earning males were forced into jails and the family was left without any source of earning.

I asked my father, ”Are you aware that once you are liberated from the British empire… and it is going to happen, because now Britain is burdened. They have exploited the land to the maximum; now the situation has reversed – they have to help the country to survive. It is better for them to escape from here and get rid of a burden which has become absolutely unnecessary.” They were not here to serve the people, they were here to exploit. And that’s exactly what happened.

The revolution happened in 1942 without any effect. It was quashed completely within nine days, and with those nine days all hope of freedom disappeared. But suddenly, out of the blue, Britain decided in 1947 to make the country free.

I told my father, ”Don’t think that your freedom movement has succeeded. Between the freedom movement and the actual coming of freedom there is a five-year gap. This is not logical. You are being given freedom because now you have become a burden and a trouble, just your existence.”

And I have come to know that researchers, looking into the whole history of the British Parliament and their decisions, found out that the British Prime Minister Attlee sent Mountbatten with the message: ”Do it as quickly as possible.” He had given him a set time, that, ”by 1948 we should get rid of this burden.”

Mountbatten proved even more efficient. He managed it one year earlier. But I told my father, ”You have been fighting, not knowing that once this country is free it will start having new fights, within itself.”

Now Mohammedans have taken Pakistan – it was part and parcel of the freedom, because Mohammedans refused to live with the Hindus. They had lived together for almost fourteen hundred years and there was no problem. In my childhood I have participated in Mohammedan celebrations; Mohammedans were participating in Hindu marriages, Hindu celebrations. There was no question of fight, because everybody was fighting the British empire. Once the British empire was leaving, suddenly the Mohammedans and Hindus became alert – a new division. They declared that they could not live together because their religions are different. Mohammedans became adamant: ”Either the British empire remains… we can risk freedom, but we cannot live with Hindus in an independent country because they are in the majority. They will rule, and Mohammedans don’t have any chance of ruling.”

The situation became so ugly that there were only two alternatives. Either accept the slavery – which the British empire was not ready to continue – or to accept the division. The division was accepted; the country was divided into two parts. The Mohammedan part became Pakistan. But they were not aware, and neither were Indians aware that the Mohammedans got two parts – one part in the east, Punjab and Sindh, where they were in the majority, and another part far away, thousands of miles away in Bengal. Half of Bengal was Mohammedan.

So Pakistan became a strange country, and immediately… both parts were Mohammedan but Bengalis saw that they were being dominated by the Punjabi Mohammedans. The shift away from the division of religions was immediate; now it became a question of language. Bengali Mohammedans speak Bengali; the Punjabi speaks Punjabi. Now they forgot completely that they were together in the fight to gain Pakistan.

Finally, the Bengalis separated from Pakistan and created a new country, Bangladesh. The distance was so great that it was impossible for Pakistan to keep control over it. But the same situation goes on happening every day.

Forty years ago the constitution decided that Hindi should be the national language. But it has not been implemented because in India there are thirty languages. Taken as a whole the Hindi-speaking people are the majority, but if those twenty-nine languages are against it, then they are in the majority. Each single language is not capable of fighting against Hindi, but those twenty-nine languages together are a tremendous force. Now you cannot believe it – that they are all Hindus, and they have been killing other Hindus because they speak different languages! It is not a question

that you can give all these thirty languages the status of a national language. Then suddenly you will find… for example Hindi is spoken in one way in one state, a slightly different way in another state. And there are five states – soon they will be fighting: ”Our Hindi is the RIGHT Hindi and the others are only distortions.”

Man has been trained to cut humanity into so many pieces on any excuse: religion, country, language, color. But the basic root is in teaching human beings that love is a limited phenomenon, and secondly, that love has varieties.

I am trying to say to you that love has no varieties. It may have different expressions – certainly the love between husband and wife will have a different expression than the love between the couple and their children. It will have a different expression, but the expression does not change the quality. It is the same love.

And its center is not the other – that’s how we have been taught, that the center of love is the other: you love somebody. The emphasis has to be completely changed. It is not a question of loving somebody, it is a question of being a loving human being. Love should not have an address; it should be simply a radiation of your being. Whoever comes in contact with you will find the immensely nourishing energy of love.

You are saying, ”I feel so much love for you.” I would like you to feel the same love for the whole existence – for the trees and for the birds and for the oceans and for the stars. Your love should not be confined. You can love me as much as you want, but that does not mean that I should become the only object of your love. Then it is not nourishing. On the contrary, it starts becoming a poisoning force.

Love is a nourishing force if it spreads all around just the way the sun rises, and it showers its light, its rays, to all the trees without any discrimination. Not thinking that ”this is just a poor marigold, just a little bit less will do. This is a beautiful rose, a little more. This is a lotus, shower as much as you can.” No, the sunlight showers over the whole planet without any discrimination.

Your love should become subjective, not objective. It should become a radiation, from the center of your being to all directions. Then it is nourishing and then it has a certain quality which can only be called divine.

Our so-called love only creates jealousy, only creates conflict, only creates two people living in intimate enmity, judging, looking, watching. Just look on the road and you can decide without asking anybody whether the couples who are walking together are husband and wives, or just boyfriends and girlfriends. I have never seen a husband and wife together smiling. What kind of love is this? Yes, they are both detecting each other…. The husband cannot look around if a beautiful woman passes by. Just looking at that beautiful woman can create so much harassment that it is not worth it.

What kind of society have you created? Is it human? It is absolutely human that if a beautiful woman passes by, the husband should tell his wife, ”Look, a beautiful woman!” Beauty should not be made a question of jealousy or comparison. You can say that the roseflower is beautiful and your husband or your wife will not object to it, because you can’t have any relationship with it.

Just the other day I was listening to a song of one of the most beautiful singers of India. The meaning of the song is, ”I was just passing by here and I thought just to say hello to you, although I know if my wife comes to know about it, this hello is going to be very dangerous. Because her insistence is, ‘You should not see anybody else except me. Your whole love is monopolized by me.’” And the singer says – his name is Jagjit Singh – ”That is her insistence. But my hobby is that wherever there is beauty, I should at least be respectful to it.”

We have created an idea of love as a possession. And all kinds of possessions ultimately turn into poisons. One should live a life non-possessive, available, open, respectful. There is so much beauty around you and so many different ways the beauty is expressing itself; to confine you is to destroy you.

And remember: anyone who confines you, you are not going to be loving to that person. Husbands don’t love their wives, wives don’t love their husbands. How can a wife love a husband who has confined her infinite capacity of radiating love, who has forced her to accept that he is the only one that all her love should be directed to? This is insulting and this is against nature, against existence.

But religions have been doing everything to destroy the individuality of man. It seems to be that without destroying man, they cannot exist. Either man can exist in his dignity or your so-called churches and popes and priests can exist, with great power.

Just the other day… I could not believe it, but I have to believe because it is a fact. Anando brought me the news that the Catholic church has decided that there will not be any other kind of music in the churches than that which is absolutely devoted to the church. Even in weddings – and it has been going on for centuries; it is not something new. Even the classical music and the geniuses of the past are no longer allowed in the church. In a church wedding the music should be only what is approved by the church, and its function should be religious – no other music.

Why are these people afraid of people becoming light, rejoicing, enjoying? They have a certain investment in your misery. The more miserable you are, the better, because only the miserable people go to the churches. Only the miserable people are in the bondage of the past. Only the miserable people are under the domination of the dead.

A man who is alive can be alive only if he is allowed total expression of his individuality.

Who are these people to decide? On what authority do these people go on deciding things for millions of people? A very strange strategy has been used. First they invented God, then they invented his son Jesus Christ, and now they have imposed themselves as his representatives. Only they have the direct line to God.

A few months ago the Catholic church has prohibited that anybody should confess to God directly. He has to confess to the priest, everything through the right channel. Then the priest will inform Jesus Christ, then Jesus Christ will persuade God the Father – ”Let this poor man be freed from his sin.” But directly you cannot confess to God. And not a single Catholic in the whole world revolted against the idea.

At least man should be given the freedom to be in direct relationship with existence.  But the business point is clear: unless you confess to the priest, the priest cannot punish you. And what is the punishment? Five dollars, ten dollars… and I don’t understand how these dollars reach to Jesus Christ. And then he gives the bribe to God the Father: ”Just forgive this man, he is a good man. Just look, he has sent ten dollars.” Those ten dollars disappear in the pocket of the priest. They have nothing to do with Jesus Christ or with God.

I have heard that one rabbi and one bishop were very friendly. The friendship had arisen because both were golf lovers, and they decided that on the next Sunday they were going to the golf club.

The rabbi waited and waited outside, but it was getting late so he entered the church. The bishop was in the confession booth – it is a small room, partitioned. On one side sits the bishop with a small window; on the other side stands the confessor. The strategy is that the confessor should not be made embarrassed; his face should not be seen, so that he can confess wholeheartedly because unless he confesses wholeheartedly he is not going to be contributing dollars wholeheartedly either.

The rabbi entered the booth and said to the bishop, ”We are going to be late.”

The bishop said, ”I am doing everything as quickly as possible, but there is still a queue.”

The rabbi said, ”I don’t know what this confession is, just let me see what you are doing. And then you can get ready while I function in your place, because nobody can see from the other side.”

The bishop said, ”It is very simple; you just watch.”

One man came and he said, ”I have committed a rape.”

The bishop said, ”Don’t be worried. Just contribute ten dollars to the charity box and I will pray for you.”

The rabbi said, ”It is very simple. Now you go and get ready.” He sat in the bishop’s chair. Another man came and he said, ”I have committed two rapes this week.”

The rabbi said, ”My son, don’t be worried. Thirty dollars.”

The man said, ”Thirty dollars? Has the rate increased? Just in front of me, for one rape you asked ten dollars.”

The rabbi said, ”Don’t be worried. You just put thirty dollars in the box – ten dollars are in advance.”

These are the people who have destroyed everything that is beautiful in man. But they are exploiting and they will cling to their exploitation to the very last. Otherwise, there is no reason for all these organized religions to exist.

Each individual should have a direct contact with the universe, its beauty, its tremendous glory – which creates without any effort a gratitude, a prayer, perhaps a song, a dance. If we can remove all these organized religions from the world, organized nations from the world, and allow each individual his dignity and respect, there will be immense love, immense respect, immense understanding. We can change this ugly world which has been created by the past, into a beautiful garden where everyone can rise to his potential height, can shower his flowers and can release his fragrance.

I stand for the individual.

All organizations have proved criminal. There is no need of any organization either in the name of politics or in the name of religion or in any other name. And the world will be an ocean of love, an ocean of beauty.

But this needs, Deva Bhasha, a tremendous courage to revolt and assert your individuality, whatever the consequences. It is long enough that we have been exploited, sucked, destroyed. And the end result is this miserable world – where once in a while perhaps you can smile, but even that smile does not come from your deepest core; where once in awhile you can love, but even that love is surrounded by all kinds of fears. Nothing in you has been left in freedom. And the people who have done this greatest crime are the people you worship. That makes it more difficult to take humanity out of their clutches.

You have to learn to love yourself first, to respect yourself first. And then certainly it will give you tremendous nourishment and it will start spreading around you.