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Be a Witness to Your Thoughts

by Osho

Meditation needs great work. It is arduous, it is an uphill task. To remain non-meditative is easy in a way. You have not to do anything about it, you are already non-meditative, everybody is born non-meditative. But to become meditative really needs great courage, great determination, great patience, because to go beyond the mind is the most complicated phenomenon.

We don't know anything except the mind. Even when we think about going beyond it, it is the mind that is thinking. Even when we try to go beyond it, it is the mind that is trying to go beyond itself. And how can the mind go beyond itself? -- that is the complexity. It is like pulling yourself up by your shoestrings. You cannot pull yourself up by your shoestrings.

But there are methods, devices, which can be of immense help. They are all indirect. Meditation cannot be forced; anything forced will be nothing but a product of the mind.

Mind is very coercive. Mind is nazi, it is fascist, it is violent. So meditation can come only when you slip out of the mind without any coercion, naturally, spontaneously. And the device, the greatest device ever used is witnessing.

Just watch your thoughts. Whenever you have time just close your eyes and see thoughts and desires and memories moving on the screen of the mind. Be totally unconcerned.

Don't judge that this is right and that is wrong. If you judge you have already jumped in. If you say "This is right," you have already chosen something, and the moment you choose you become identified with it, you have become attached to it. You would not like it to go, you would like to keep it for yourself. And when you say that something is bad you are pushing it away, you are avoiding it, you don't want it any more. You don't want it even to be there on the screen; hence you have started fighting, struggling, and you have forgotten witnessing in all this.

Just to be a witness: one sits on the bank of a river and watches the river flow by. There is nothing to judge, nothing really to say, but only to see. And if one is patient enough, slowly slowly the traffic becomes thin. Less and less do thoughts come on the screen and sometimes for moments there is nothing on the screen and you are facing an empty screen.

Those are the most precious moments of life, those intervals when thoughts are not there, you are simply there. The seer is there with nothing to see. Those are the moments of purity, innocence, those are the moments which can be called divine. They are no more human. You have transcended humanity in those moments.

Slowly slowly those moments become bigger and bigger, and one day it becomes such a simple process that whenever you want to you can go into that interval, into that thoughtlessness. Fully aware yet thoughtless - that is meditation. And that is the only thing that can liberate you from all kinds of bondages, that can bring peace to you, and bliss and god and truth.

Osho - Unpublished talks

Copyright Osho International Foundation 1998

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About The Author

Osho is one of the most provocative spiritual teachers of the 20th century. Beginning in the 1970s he captured the attention of young people from the West who wanted to experience meditation and transformation. Even since his death in 1990, the influence of his teachings continues to expand, reaching seekers of all ages in virtually every country of the world. Osho International Foundation. All rights reserved. For more information, visit www.osho.org where these is an "Ask Osho" section where people can write their question and the web editors will find the nearest answer to the question from Osho, who has answered thousands of questions from seekers over the years.

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