by Jeevan Ullas & Anand Mayuri
There is a difference between the races, the religions, man and woman. But it is not a difference that makes a difference. ~ Osho
Recently, I got in a discussion about tough issues happening in some parts of the world, and it made me think about what it means to be a human being.
Some of the people got very offended, angry and almost hateful towards me, which made me wonder why people get offended or angry. Why do races, societies, established religions and countries try to play various games to protect their kind? What’s the reason behind such unrest happening all around the world?
The more I thought about it, the more I realized that it’s the identity, the conditioning we get all our lives which divides us artificially into different races, beliefs, and occupiers of certain land masses. That division makes those who are different the other, and this creates fear. This division makes a person like a jigsaw puzzle, made of thousands of pieces.
When we identify ourselves with a religion, race, country or certain ideologies then we try to protect it because that becomes our identity and we try to defend it at all costs. When this starts happening on a larger scale, on the levels of country, race or religion, then it comes out in worse forms, where certain collectives initiate lots of dirty things, namely black ops, hidden religious agendas etc. Division is the name of the game, and it’s been played over and over for centuries to divide people and exploit them.
What can be the solution to these situations, woven around us like a web, seemingly impossible to debate and deal with? There are so many divisions and so much diversity in our world that no one can understand it all and make sense of everything.
To me it seems that the solution is simple. All one has to do is drop one’s identity; don’t get identified with anything. If you don’t identify yourself with anything, then you have nothing to protect and if you don’t have anything to protect, then you can see that all others are the same, humans like you. Some may understand your way of life, some may not, but at least you will be at peace with yourself, free of fear and hatred, full of the understanding of life: there are really no complexities other than our own minds.
Saying it is easy, but embracing this concept is not. If you don’t identify yourself with anything, then you are standing alone. There is no religion, country or race standing behind you; yet, the whole human race becomes your family. When gays win the right to marry, when the first Native American woman is appointed to serve in a federal court, these are your victories. And when schoolgirls are abducted in Nigeria, those are your girls; when refugees flee Syria, those are your relatives. School shootings, police brutality, hate crimes against anybody—it all becomes personal. It’s not something for faint of the heart; it takes courage to feel that much, but once enough people start living like that, seeing like that and loving like that, the world will become a very different place. How can you accept war, much less start one against your own family, your own self? It will become a place where you can enjoy the fragrance of a rose rather than hearing gunshots or bomb blasts everyday around you or on news.
It sounds easy when we read it, but it seems practically impossible to achieve, especially knowing how many ways we are seemingly divided. It looks like an almost impossible task to finish, but is it really? If you have one candle lit, would you not be able to light infinitely more from that one? It always starts with one. If you are a changed person, your fragrance will reach to your neighbors, and certainly sooner or later they will be changed by your joyousness, and the light will grow. It might take patience and time, but it can happen more easily than we think, because all those barriers between us are only scratches on the surface, only words, illusions, nothing more than lines in the sand before the ocean of existence that unites us.
There are other catalysts for this new awakening as well. Meditation is one thing which can help tremendously because no race, country or religion can claim meditation as their personal property. Meditation is our human heritage, and it can help one see one’s own potential, contrary to what we have been told by various interest groups. There are meditation techniques which can help cleanse our bodies, minds and emotions, allowing us to be able to rest and be silent and meditative. We have such a rich heritage due to so many enlightened people throughout human history that one can have hundreds of different choices and can change techniques when desired.
Furthermore, the connectedness of humanity and all existence—animals and plants and books and rocks and stars—is something that can be experienced directly through meditation. This feeling of oneness beyond words has been described by countless meditators and mystics, known and unknown. When we experience this for ourselves, its reality goes deeper than logic, deeper than the mind. We need not be convinced because we have seen it for ourselves.
Not only is this experience of connectedness beyond the idea of individuality, it is beyond the idea of time, of birth and death. It has been claimed that to take the time to meditate in a world teeming with suffering and injustice is a selfish enterprise, but meditation benefits not only the individual, but the entire world. When the time comes to speak out, to stand up for the French or the Tibetans or the refugees—and the time is at hand, the time is always at hand—the meditator finds that he or she has more courage than previously thought. All fear is at its root a fear of death, and this experience of wholeness in meditation, even if you don’t know how or why or how it works, is an experience that you are also beyond time, beyond death; you find that the fear of death has lost its teeth. This brings real courage. Not the courage of any group or ideology, but your own.
A revolutionary is part of the political world; his approach is through politics. His understanding is that changing the social structure is enough to change the human being.
A rebel, as I use the term, is a spiritual phenomenon. His approach is absolutely individual. His vision is that if we want to change the society, we have to change the individual...
No revolution has yet succeeded in changing human beings; but it seems we are not aware of the fact. We still go on thinking in terms of revolution, of changing society, of changing the government, of changing the bureaucracy, of changing laws, political systems. Feudalism, capitalism, communism, socialism, fascism – they were all in their own way revolutionary. They all have failed, and failed utterly, because man has remained the same.~ Osho, The Book of Understanding
As it is, we are so fearful that one day this fear will destroy us. If humanity is to be saved, we will need a lot of these new individuals who do not identify themselves with anything, are fearless and insightful, the people who can stand alone. Working alone on the outside front is not enough; we need to work both ways, inside out. We need Rebelution, not revolution. The real revolution begins at home, deep in your heart, deep behind your closed eyes. The real revolution begins with you.
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