However beautifully you express your love in another language, it is not the same (OSHO)

However beautifully you express your love in another language, it is not the same (OSHO)

There is a beautiful incident in the life of one of the wisest kings of India, Raja Dhoj. He was very much interested in wise people. His whole treasury was open only for one purpose – to gather together all the wise people of the country, whatever the cost.

His capital was Ujjain, and he had thirty of the country’s most famous people in his court. It was the most precious court in the whole country.

One of the greatest poets of the world, Kalidas, was one of the members of the court of Raja Dhoj. One day a man appeared at the court saying that he spoke thirty languages with the same fluency, the same accuracy and accent as any native person could, and he had come to make a challenge: “Hearing that you have in your court the wisest people of the country, here are one thousand gold pieces. Anybody who can recognize my mother tongue, these one thousand gold pieces are his. And if he cannot recognize it, then he will have to give me one thousand gold pieces.”

There were great scholars there – and everybody knows that whatever you do, you can never speak any language the way you can speak your own mother tongue, because every other language has to be learned by effort. Only the mother tongue is spontaneous – you don’t even learn it, really. It is a result of your whole situation that you simply start speaking it. It has a spontaneity. That’s why even the Germans, who call their country “fatherland” – most countries call their land “the motherland” – but even the Germans don’t call their language the “father tongue.” Every language is called a mother tongue because the child starts learning from the mother. And anyway the father never has the chance to speak in the house! It is always the mother who is speaking; the father is listening.

Many in the court of Raja Dhoj took the challenge. The man spoke in thirty languages – a few pieces in one language, a few pieces in another language – and it was really hard! He was certainly a master artist. He was speaking each language the way only a native can speak his own mother tongue.All of the thirty great scholars lost the contest. The contest continued for thirty days, and every day one person took the challenge and lost it. They would guess, and the man would say, “No, this is not my mother tongue.”

On the thirty-first day . . . King Dhoj had been continually saying to Kalidas, “Why don’t you take up the challenge? Because a poet knows language in a more delicate way, with all its nuances, more than anybody else.” But Kalidas remained silent. He had been watching for thirty days, trying to determine which language the man spoke with more ease, with more spontaneity, with more joy. But he had not been able to find any difference, the man spoke all the languages in exactly the same way.

On the thirty-first day, Kalidas asked King Dhoj and all the wise people to stand outside in front of the hall. There was a long row of steps, and the man was coming up; as he came up to the last step, Kalidas pushed him down. And as he fell rolling down the steps, anger came up–he shouted.

Kalidas said, “This is your mother tongue!” Because in anger you cannot remember, and the man had not been expecting this tactic to be used in the contest. And that actually was his mother tongue. Deepest in his mind, the recording was of the mother tongue.

One of my professors used to say – he had lived all over the world, teaching in different universities–”Only in two situations in life have I been in difficulty in other countries, and those are when I was fighting or falling in love. In those times, one needs one’s mother tongue. However beautifully you express your love in another language, it is not the same, it seems superficial.

And when you are angry and fighting in somebody else’s language, you cannot have that same joy . . .” He said, “Those are two very significant situations – fighting and loving – and mostly they are together with the same person! With a person you are in love, and with that same person you have to fight.”

And he was right to say that everything in a language that you have learned remains superficial–you can neither sing a beautiful song nor can you use the real four-letter words of your own language. In both cases, it remains lukewarm.

 

 

 

Osho Beyond Enlightenment

OSHO



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