Osho Quotes on Sitting Silently
- Nobody is in a state of stillness; they cannot be. That seems to be a waste of time. Sitting silently, doing nothing is the foundation of meditation. In the West, meditation is not possible for the simple reason that one life span is too short. And death comes too quickly. It does not give you enough time. The Eastern concept takes care of your spiritual growth. The hypothesis of reincarnation, a continuous eternal cycle of birth and re-birth, gives you enough time. You can sit silently for hours; there is no hurry. There is no need to be speedy. There is an eternity available to you — not only seventy years.
- Zen simply means sitting. In Japanese they have the full word, ‘zazen’. It means sitting silently, doing nothing. All doing is of the mind. Whenever you do, the mind comes into being. Whenever you want to do something, the mind immediately starts planning. With even the idea of doing you start pouring energy into the mind. Zen is a simple sitting. Not doing anything, not even meditating… because to meditate, from the back door the doing again comes in. Zen simply says, sit and don’t do anything. Don’t think in terms of doing, think in terms of being. Just be. So for years a seeker of Zen simply sits. It is the hardest thing in the world to do and I can feel you will understand it. It is the hardest thing in the world to do — just to sit. You would like something to do because that something keeps you preoccupied, and you go on feeling that you are doing something, that you are somebody. And at least it never gives you any opportunity to face yourself. Your doing is an escape from yourself, so that you never come face to face, so that you never encounter your own being. You go on avoiding.
- Those who give you goals are your enemies. Those who tell you what to become and how to become it, are the poisoners. The real master simply says, “There is nothing to become. You are already that, it is already the case. Stop running after shadows. Sit silently and BE. Sitting silently, doing nothing, the spring comes and the grass grows by itself.
- Sit silently…. Life is boring — so there is no harm in sitting with closed eyes, because there is nothing to see. Sit silently, peacefully. You have looked outside and you have found nothing but meaninglessness. Now give a chance to your inner world: look inwards. And I promise you that the same eyes which have not found anything outside will find inside everything, a constant hallelujah.
- The mind can see only one thing at a time. and the opposite is not possible at the same time. When you see the opposite. the first disappears. The mind goes on looking at the words so it cannot see the silences that come after each word. Change the focus. Just sitting silently. start looking in the gaps. Not with effort, no need to strain. Relaxed — just easy — in a playful mood — just as fun. No need to be religious about it otherwise you become serious, and once you become serious it is very difficult to move from words to no-words. It is very easy if you remain loose, flowing, non-serious, playful — as if it is just a fun.
- I cannot explain it to you, I can only indicate a few directions. In the morning when the sun is rising, just sit silently on the riverbank. Watch it. Doing nothing, just sitting silently, watch it. And some time in some blissful moment it will happen: there will be no observer, and nothing observed. The observer becomes the observed. It is not that you are separate from the rising sun — you are it.
- Buddha says: Learn sitting silently — become a mirror. Silence makes a mirror out of your consciousness, and then you function moment to moment. You reflect life. You don’t carry an album within your head. Then your eyes are clear and innocent, you have clarity, you have vision, and you are never untrue to life. This is authentic living.
- Buddha certainly says: Know how to sit silently. That does not mean that he says: Go on sitting silently forever. He is not saying you have to become inactive; on the contrary, it is only out of silence that action arises. If you are not silent, if you don’t know how to sit silently, or stand silently in deep meditation, whatsoever you go on doing is reaction, not action. You react.
- To be total in your work is not addiction, it is a kind of meditation. When you are totally in your work, your work has a possibility of perfection, you will have a joy arising out of a perfect work. If you can be perfect and total in work, you can be total in no-work — just sitting silently, totally silent. You know how to be total. You can close your eyes and you can be totally in. You know the secret of being total. So to be total in work is helpful in meditation. The workaholic cannot meditate, he cannot sit silently even for a few minutes. He will fidget, he will change his position, he will do something or other — look into this pocket or that pocket, and he knows that there is nothing in those pockets. He will take out his glasses, clean them, put them away, and he knows they are clean.
- If two lovers sit silently, death suddenly surrounds them. And when two lovers are silent you will see a certain happiness and also a certain sadness — happiness because life is at its peak, and sadness because at its peak death also comes in. Whenever you are silent you will feel a sort of sadness. Even looking at a rose flower, if you are sitting silently and not saying anything about the rose flower, just looking at it, i n that silence you will suddenly feel it is there — death. You will see the flower withering, within moments it will be gone, lost forever. Such a beauty and so fragile! Such a beauty and so vulnerable! Such a beauty, such a miracle and soon it will be lost forever and it will not return again. Suddenly you will become sad.
- Sitting silently, just watch your thoughts. Just see all the nuances of a thought — how it arises, how it takes form, how it remains, abides, and how then it leaves you. It becomes a guest and then when the time comes it leaves you. And many thoughts come and go; you are a host where many thoughts come and go. Just watch. Don’t try from the very beginning with the difficult thoughts, try with simple thoughts. That will make it easier, because the process is the same. Just sit in the garden, close your eyes and see whatsoever thought is passing.
- Silence is the space in which one awakens, and the noisy mind is the space in which one remains asleep. If your mind continues chattering, you are asleep. Sitting silently, if the mind disappears and you can hear the chattering birds and no mind inside, a silence…this whistle of the bird, the chirping, and no mind functioning in your head, utter silence…then awareness wells up in you. It does not come from the outside, it arises in you, it grows in you. Otherwise remember: you are asleep.
- Mind is what you have. No-mind is the search of meditation. And from no-mind blossom flowers of unselfishness, of love, of compassion, of sharing. I repeat Basho, the great Zen master, and one of the greatest poets of the world: “Sitting silently, doing nothing, the spring comes and the grass grows by itself.” This sitting silently is not avoiding life. Sitting silently is searching for life, the very source of life. And the moment you have found the source, everything grows by itself, just like when spring comes, the grass grows by itself. Virtue, truth, compassion, love — everything you can conceive of arises out of meditation, and there is no other source for it. They do not arise from prayers, because prayers are addressed to a fictitious God, who does not exist.
- Let me explain to you what zazen is. Zazen is a deep unoccupiedness — not doing anything outwardly, not doing anything inwardly. It is not even meditation because when you meditate you are making some sort of effort, you are trying to do something: chanting a mantra, remembering God, or even remembering yourself. But these efforts create ripples, these efforts create vibrations and your sitting becomes corrupted. Then your sitting is not innocent. Zazen means: sit, and just sit, nothing else. There is no doing on the part of the body, no doing on the part of the mind. It’s a state of non-doing. That does not mean that you are fast asleep, because sleep is a doing. That does not mean that you are dead, because if you are dead you cannot just sit. That simply means that you are tremendously alive, intensely alive, a fire of being, but not moving anywhere — a reservoir of energy in a deep awaiting. You are just waiting for something to happen, not even expecting, because expectation will again create a ripple of thought and the mind will start functioning. Everything is suspended. You breathe, and that’s all that you do. But that is not a doing, because breathing goes on its own accord. You have not to do anything but just sit silently.
- The truth is, not even a single step is needed. Sitting silently doing nothing, the spring comes and the grass grows by itself. But that may be too much. Your doer mind may simply ignore it or may think it is all nonsense. How can you achieve God without doing anything?
The mind is continuously running around. It never sits, it can’t sit. Sitting seems to be death to it, and in a way it is. That’s why Zen people say, if you can sit silently for a few hours every day, doing nothing, not even chanting a mantra, because that is again a running of the mind, the same mind…. It can sing pop songs, it can chant a religious mantra, it makes no difference. It wants some work, it wants activity, it wants occupation, it wants to run. Its life is in the running. The Zen people say just sit, don’t do anything. The most difficult thing in the world is just to sit doing nothing. But once you have got the knack of it…. If you go on sitting for a few months doing nothing for a few hours every day, slowly slowly, many things will happen. You will feel sleepy, you will dream. Many thoughts will crowd your mind, many things. The mind will say, “Why are you wasting your time? You could have earned a little money. At least you could have gone to a film, entertained yourself, or you could have relaxed and gossiped. You could have watched the TV or listened to the radio, or at least you could have read the newspaper you have not seen. Why are you wasting your time?” Mind will give you a thousand and one arguments, but if you just go on listening without being bothered by the mind…. It will do all kinds of tricks: it will hallucinate, it will dream, it will become sleepy. It will do all that is possible to drag you out of just sitting. But if you go on, if you persevere, one day the sun rises. One day it happens, you are not feeling sleepy, the mind has become tired of you, is fed up with you, has dropped the idea that you can be trapped, is simply finished with you! There is no sleep, no hallucination, no dream, no thought. You are simply sitting there doing nothing…and all is silence and all is peace and all is bliss. You have entered God, you have entered truth.