A Man Becomes a Buddha the Moment He Accepts All That Life Brings With Gratitude
Be grateful to everyone, because everybody is creating a space for you to be transformed – even those who think they are obstructing you, even those whom you think are enemies. Your friends, your enemies, good people and bad people, favorable circumstances, unfavorable circumstances – all together they are creating the context in which you can be transformed and become a buddha. Be grateful to all. To those who have helped, to those who have hindered, to those who have been indifferent. Be grateful to all, because all together they are creating the context in which buddhas are born, in which you can become a buddha.
Osho, The Book of Wisdom, Talk #5
Meditation, compassion and gratitude. Whenever you are meditative, you feel blissful; whenever you are in compassion, you feel ecstatic. And then gratitude arises – not towards anyone in particular, gratitude just arises. It is not towards me or towards Jesus, or Zarathustra or Buddha, it is simply gratitude. You feel so grateful just for being here, just for being alive, just for being able to be meditative, just for being able to be in compassion. You feel simply grateful. That gratefulness is not towards anybody, it is towards the whole.
Osho, A Bird on the Wing, Ch 11, Q 2
Very few women have attained to the Zen ultimate. Rengetsu is one of those rare women.
She was on a pilgrimage, and she came to a village at sunset and begged for lodging for the night, but the villagers slammed their doors. They were against Zen. Zen is so revolutionary, so utterly rebellious, that it is very difficult to accept it. By accepting it you are going to be transformed; by accepting it you will be passing through a ﬁre, you will never be the same again.
So traditional people have always been against all that is true in religion. Tradition is all that is untrue in religion. So those must have been traditional Buddhists in the town, and they didn’t allow this woman to stay in the town; they threw her out.
It was a cold night, and the old woman with no lodging… and hungry. She had to make a cherry tree in the ﬁelds her shelter. It was really cold, and she could not sleep well. And it was dangerous too — wild animals and all.
At midnight she awoke — because of too much cold — and saw, as it were, in the spring night sky, the fully opened cherry blossoms laughing to the misty moon. Overcome with the beauty, she got up and made a reverence in the direction of the village….
This is what tathata is.
Overcome with the beauty, she got up and made a reverence in the direction of the village:
Through their kindness in refusing me lodging
I found myself beneath the blossoms
on the night of this misty moon.
She feels grateful. With great gratitude she thanks those people who refused her lodging, otherwise she would be sleeping under an ordinary roof, and she would have missed this blessing — these cherry blossoms, and this whispering with the misty moon, and this silence of the night, this utter silence of the night. She is not angry, she accepts it. Not only accepts it, welcomes it — she feels grateful.
A man becomes a Buddha the moment he accepts all that life brings with gratitude.
Osho, Zen: The Path of Paradox, Vol 3 Ch 5
I have always loved to remember a Sufi master, Junnaid. He was the master of al-Hillaj Mansoor. He had a habit: after each prayer – and Mohammedans pray five times a day – after each prayer he would say to the sky, “Your compassion is great. How beautifully you take care of us, and we don’t deserve it. I don’t even have words to show my gratefulness, but I hope you will understand the unexpressed gratitude of my heart.”
They were on a pilgrimage, and it happened that for three days they passed through villages where orthodox Mohammedans would not allow them even to stay in the villages; there was no question of giving them food or water. For three days without food, without water, without sleep, tired, utterly frustrated… The disciples could not believe that this man Junnaid, their master, still goes on saying the same things. Before, it was okay – but still he goes on saying, “You are great, you are compassionate, and I don’t have words to express my gratitude.”
On the third evening when he had finished his prayer, his disciples said, “Now it is time for an explanation. For three days we have been hungry, we have not had water, we are thirsty; we have not slept, we have been insulted continually, no place has been given to us, no shelter. At least today you should not say, ‘You are great, you are compassionate.’ For what are you showing your gratitude?”
Junnaid laughed. He said, “My trust in existence is unconditional. It is not that I am grateful because existence provides this and that and that. I am – that’s enough. Existence accepts me – that’s enough. And I don’t deserve to be; I have not earned it. Moreover, these three days have been of tremendous beauty because I had an opportunity to watch whether anger would arise in me, and it didn’t arise; whether I would start to feel that God had forsaken me, and the idea did not arise. There has been no difference in my attitude towards existence. My gratitude has not changed, and it has filled me with more gratitude than ever. It was a fire test, and I have come out of it unburned. What more do you want? I will trust existence in my life and I will trust existence in my death. It is my love affair.
Osho, Beyond Enlightenment, Discourse #19
Selected excerpts from Osho’s talks.