14 Jan Happiness seems to always be somewhere else and that someone else enjoys it (OSHO)
So people are passing from one woman to another woman, to another woman, to another woman; from one man, to another man, to another man; from one business to another business, from one job to another job – in the pursuit of happiness. And strangely, it always looks as if it is there and somebody else is enjoying it, so you start pursuing it.
When you reach there it is not there. The grass beyond your fence is always greener, but don’t jump the fence to see actually whether it is so. Enjoy it! If it is greener on the other side of the fence, enjoy it. Why destroy things by jumping the fence and finding out that it is worse than your own grass?
But people are running after everything: perhaps this will give them what they have been missing.
Nothing can help. You can live in a palace but you will be as miserable, perhaps more than you were in an old hut. In the old hut at least there was a consolation that you were miserable because you were in an old, rotten hut. There was an excuse; you could have explained away your miserliness, your misery, your suffering. And there was also a hope that someday you would be able to manage a better house – if not a palace, then at least a good, beautiful, small house of your own. It is hope that is keeping people alive, and it is their excuses and explanations which keep them trying again and again. It has become the philosophy of America to try again and again and again.
But there are a few things which are not within the area of trying, which happen only when you are completely finished with trying. You simply sit down and you say, “Enough is enough – I am not going to try.” That’s how enlightenment happened to Gautam Buddha.
Because of the pursuit, he dropped his kingdom. He is a pioneer in many things; he is the first dropout. Your hippies have not dropped much. To drop something, first you have to have it. And Buddha was surrounded by all the beautiful women from the kingdom. So no desire remained unfulfilled: he had the best of food, hundreds of servants, huge gardens.
Buddha said, “I have not found happiness here. I will seek it, I will pursue it I will do everything that is needed to find happiness.” And for six years Buddha did everything that anybody can do. He went to all kinds of teachers, masters, scholars, wise men, sages, saints. And India is so full of these people that you need not seek and search; you simply move anywhere and you meet them.
They are all over the place. If you don’t seek them, they will seek you. And particularly in Buddha’s time it was really at a peak. The whole country was agog with only one thing: how to find something which transcends death.
But after six years’ tremendous effort – austerities, fasting and yoga postures – nothing happened.
And one day….
Niranjana is a small river, not very deep. Buddha was fasting and doing austerities and torturing himself in every way, and he had become so weak that when he went for a bath in the Niranjana he could not cross the river. The river was small, but he was so weak that only somehow could he manage, by holding a root of a tree which was hanging by the side of the bank, to keep himself there; otherwise the river would take him away.
While he was hanging onto the root, the idea happened to him that these sages say, Existence is like an ocean. That’s what in India is called bhavasagar – ocean of existence. Buddha thought, “If existence is an ocean, then whatever I am doing is not right, because if I can’t cross this poor river, Niranjana, how am I going tc cross the ocean of existence? Whatever I have been doing I have simply wasted my time, my life, my energy, my body….”
Somehow he managed to come out of the river, sat under the tree and dropped all effort.
That evening – it was a full moon night – for the first time in six years he slept well, because there was nothing to do the next day, nowhere to go: no practice no exercise.
The next day there was no need even to get up in brahmamuhurt, in the early morning before sunrise. The next day he could have as much sleep as he wanted. For the first time he felt a total freedom from all effort, seeking, search, pursuit. Of course he slept in a tremendously relaxed way, and in the morning, as he opened his eyes, the last star was disappearing. It is said, with the last star disappearing, Buddha disappeared too. The whole night’s rest, peace, no future, no goal, nothing to be done…. For the first time he was not an American. Lying down, in no hurry even to get up, he simply saw that all those six years looked like a nightmare. But it was past. The star disappeared, and here Buddha disappeared.
This was the experience of bliss, or truth; of transcendence, of all that you have been seeking but you have been missing because you have been seeking. Even Buddhists have not been able to understand the significance of this story. This is the most important story in Gautam Buddha’s life.
Nothing else is comparable to it.
But you will be surprised…. I am not a Buddhist – I don’t agree with Buddha on a thousand and one thingsbut I am the first man in twenty-five centuries who has put emphasis on this story and made it the central focus, because this is where Buddha’s awakening happened.
A basic thing has to be understood: Man wants happiness, that’s why he is miserable. The more you want to be happy, the more miserable you will be.
From Personality To Individuality