Following is an excerpt from a samvaad (dialogue) session with Acharya Prashant.
Question: I have come across people who have been listening to Osho for a very long time, and they wish to hear some other Master too. But then they feel disloyal towards Osho.
If you go to a Saint and it makes you feel that you are being disloyal to another Saint, then you have understood neither of the two.
The Sikhs have ten Gurus, and being with one of them makes you more eligible, more eager, more open to be with the other ones. That is the thing about really being with a Teacher, a Master, a Saint, whatever.
If you have really-really been with one, then you have been with his Essence, not with his name, or face, or form. And if you have really been with his Essence, that would encourage you to be everywhere. That Essence takes form.
How can you be with Raidas, Saint Raidas, the Bhakti Saint, how can you be Saint Raidas and successfully avoid Kabir Sahib? If you can do that, then you are magically special. If you are with Saint Gorakhnath, you will have to go to Kabir Sahib. If you are with Ravidas Sahib, you will have to go Kabir Sahib.
Where is disloyalty in this?
But if you are talking in those terms, disloyalty etc., then it means that you have not gained closeness even to the one Master, you professed loyalty towards. It means you are not being disloyal when you go to another Teacher, you are already disloyal when you are even with the one Teacher.
What is loyalty to the Teacher? What does the Teacher want from you Some kind of personal association? Some kind of personality worship? If the Teacher is genuine, his intention is to take you to the Essence, not to the name, shape, form, face, colour, whatever.
Osho himself was such a great door. If you have read him, then you know many great Masters he spoke on. In fact, some names would probably have gone obscure had Osho not spoken on them.
That shows the love and authenticity of the Teacher.
He holds your hands and takes you to every place worth visiting. He takes you to every Teacher worth listening to.
It is not some kind of personal or bodily relationship, it is not some kind of filial affiliation. Loyalty and such things become abusive when used in terms that resemble conjugal behaviour.
The husband is telling the wife, "You remain loyal to me," and the wife is telling the same to the husband. Does the Teacher-student relationship belong to this category?
Question 2: Osho had millions of followers all over the world. Why from those millions, not even a single one attain enlightenment?
AP: How do you know? Do you know all the million ones?
Questioner 2: When someone gets enlightenment, then......
AP: (Smilingly) He becomes famous.
Questioner 2: No, it is just that he has such a fragrance or such positive energy that everything around him changes.
AP: That is very true. Flowers have such great fragrance, monkeys still pluck them. The fragrance might be there but there equally has to exist someone who respects and appreciates the fragrance.
Have you seen monkeys respecting fragrant flowers? I have in fact seen monkeys chewing roses, and cows and goats when let lose on a rose gardens have a good time. What do they do? They chew all the rose flowers. The fragrance is there, but so what?
If the fragrance comes to a monkey or a goat, who will respect the fragrance? So forget about all this the headcount of number of enlightened people and all that. There is no such census.
You care for your own development and Liberation.
Question 3: It is wonderful to read Osho, but I also came across readings where he talked about some other things as well like: an internal voice will be there, a light will be shown up. I love Osho, but I see that these things come in between. They somehow keep one entangled.
So, at one time I want to enjoy listening to him, and at other times it feels like I might be entangled to these things.
AP: I love watching the YouTube clips of Test matches of Seventies and Eighties. I am talking of Cricket matches, test matches from Seventies and Eighties. And the batsmen are having a torrid time.
I watch Lillie (Dennis Lillee), and Hadlee (Richard Hadlee) bowl to Gavaskar (Sunil Gavaskar). And I see how Gavaskar is leaving one delivery after the other, one delivery after the other. I see Marshall (Malcolm Masrhall) bowling to Vengsarkar (Dilip Vegsarkar), and I see how difficult it is.
Today on the list of all time highest run scorers or all time highest wicket-takers, those heroes of Seventies and Eighties are nowhere. Sunil Gavaskar was once the Number One in the ranking of most runs in Test Cricket, I believe he is now close to Number Ten. Kapil Dev with his four hundred thirty four wickets was once Number One, today he too is nearing the Tenth place.
The strike-rate of Vivian Richards in (ODI) One Day International Cricket was nearly Ninety-two, that Ninety-two is far inferior to the strike-rate of many a lesser batsmen today. But when it comes to Test technique, Gavaskar is unparalleled. When it comes to sheer dominance in one day cricket, there is nobody like King Richards.
Those days were different. Those audience were different, those pitches were different. The entire condition was different. You have to be sympathetic.
You have-to-have sympathy towards the Teacher as well. In fact 'empathy' would be a more appropriate word. You have to see under what conditions has he been operating. If you will want to detect trash, you will find trash in every religious Scripture.
You say that you listen to me, but I find a lot of trash in every single recording that goes out in my name. I find it so distasteful to listen to my own audios.
One needs to have a certain empathy.
One needs to understand that there are audience, and the Teacher has to keep up with the audience.
He cannot run too far ahead.
If the audience is demanding entertainment, the Teacher has to provide them. Otherwise they will walk out. And if they walk out, why is the Teacher speaking at all?
When you talk of Osho, you are talking of the Sixties, the Seventies, the Eighties, the world has come a fair distance ahead since then. Those were the times when even superstitions ruled a fair area, those were the times when a lot of people equated Spirituality with something metaphysical, so the Teacher had to dole out a little bit of all that, just to keep the audience satisfied.
Do not turn critical too easily. Focus on that parts of the Master's teachings that are absolutely pristine and timeless.
Today, even minions, dwarfs are hitting six sixes per match. King Richards would have had them for breakfast. But then, he was not hitting too many sixes. It was difficult to hit sixes in those times.
It was difficult to be an Osho in those times.
There was no internet, no YouTube, and India was a very poor country. And he had taken up a colossal mission for himself.
Keep in mind his situations.