Update (26th September 2017)
I wrote the original content of this post many months before.. Since then, I happened to notice many things which gave me a confirmation that Sadhguru has read Osho’s books extensively. His word choice, anecdotes, views and many others are directly from the talks of Osho.
To explain with evidence, I am pasting a part of the answer that I wrote in Quora:
Osho is totally independent in his choice of words. For example, once he said that there are only two paths to liberation, Samadhi and Prajna. This is Osho’s own choice of words while expressing the distinction between Shamatha and Vipasana of Buddhism. In English, it means ‘concentration’ and ‘insight’.
It is true; As far as I have seen, practices in Vedanta, Buddhism and many other spiritual traditions are either of developing concentration or of developing insight (inquiry or awareness of moment to moment experiences including breath, sensations, thoughts etc). But Osho’s choice of words here is unique to Osho. But since Sadhguru’s source of information mainly comes from Osho’s books, you can see him repeating the same words in one of his lectures. You can read it here: Path of Samadhi and Pragna – Talks by Sadhguru and Osho (the whole Samyama program is based on these two practices and some mantra chanting; the practices are indeed powerful)
Sadhguru has never read Bhadwad Gita directly as he himself says. But he has certainly read Osho’s commentary on Gita. It is a very long one, but he has at least read a few parts of it. How do I say so? Because, Gita has been interpreted in various ways. Shankara interprets in one way; Ramanuja in another way and Madhva does it in a different way. But Sadhguru’s interpretation of certain parts of Gita is exactly the same as how Osho interprets it.
If you call Sadhguru a philosopher, he would not like it. Why? Is Philosophy a bad word? No.. The word just means ‘love of wisdom’.. Do you think a love for wisdom is bad?
Sadhguru doesn’t like the word philosophy because Osho didn’t like it. But Osho uses the word philosophy to mean how people intellectually try to understand the non-dual reality and try to make concepts out of it without realizing it in actual experience.
Philosophy actually has a wider scope in meaning. For example, epistemology, a field that studies how knowledge is acquired is a subset of Philosophy, All of our Indian schools of thoughts have epistemology. Sadhguru keeps saying that you should know the truth by direct experience and not by believing someone else words. This is epistemology, which is also philosophy(it is called as pratyaksha paramana). So, whether you use the word philosophy in its literal meaning or with the wider meaning, there is no reason to say ‘i don’t have a philosophy, dont call me a philosopher’’ unless he has read Osho’s talks and influenced by them.
Sadhguru’s comments on Freud are exactly the same as Osho’s. Many of his comments about Psychology and science in general are from Osho. Sadhguru once said ‘psychologists only studied sick people, they never studied meditators’ , which is also a comment made by Osho. But it is wrong. Psychologists have studied a lot of meditators. William James, one of the earliest psychologists have studied meditators extensively and wrote a book about religious experiences. Also, recently in the last 20 years, thousands of psychologists are studying meditators and have written books about enlightenment. Dalai Lama is working with American psychologists to help them with their research. The problem is, Sadhguru probably never updated the information he got from Osho’s comments on Psychology. He is not aware that Psychology as it exists today is a lot different and advanced than how Psychology was during the time of Osho.
Sadhguru once talked about a rosebud experiment conducted in De la warr laboratory. You will find articles about the lab and its experiments, but you will not find the rosebud experiment in any of them. But you can find it in Osho’s talks.
Sadhguru talks a lot about emptiness, Shiva and his 112 techniques. Yogic culture doesn’t use any word that literally means ‘emptiness.. This concept of emptiness comes from Vigyan Bhairav Tantra, a text that was made popular by Osho. It was in this text 112 techniques are described and emptiness is mentioned. Osho talks about Shiva a lot in his commentary. Sadhguru, when talks about Shiva being both good and evil, both light and dark etc, adopts the same style and views expressed by Osho. (Don’t tell me that mystics talk the same way. Ramana didn’t describe Shiva like this, Ramakrishna didn’t describe Shiva like this). It is in this commentary, Osho says that Shiva didn’t have any philosophy, he only had methods… Sadhguru took that view to describe himself ‘I don’t have any philosophy, I only give methods’…
I have described the exact similarities in their quotes as well, in this answer: Shanmugam P’s answer to What are some of Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev’s best teachings/quotes?
Sadhguru often says ‘don’t believe me, don’t disbelieve me’.. This is often quoted by many people who love Sadhguru. After all, it is unique and great, right? Neither Ramana nor Ramakrishna nor Shankara said it this way. But Osho did:
“I have not told you to believe it; I have not told you to disbelieve it. It is my experience, I am sharing it with you. You don’t have to believe it, you don’t have to disbelieve it. You have to inquire into it. You have to go to the same depths, to the same heights from where I am speaking, to the same center of your being. Then you will understand it, not believe it. You will know it. Existence needs you, otherwise you wouldn’t be here.”-
Osho, I Celebrate Myself: God Is No Where, Life Is Now Here – Chapter 4
Sadhguru even gave a lecture with a title ‘Sexuality and divine’ (available in dvd) similar to Osho’s controversial discourse series ‘From Sex to Superconciousness’.. Sadhguru’s unique way of interpreting Krishna’s life and his motivation to give a series on Krishna also came from Osho’s famous series ‘Krishna and his philosophy’. Look at the examples of mystics that Sadhguru quotes: J.Krishnamurti, Mansoor , Gurdjieff and Rumi. All of those people who were commented extensively by Osho. Do you think Sadhguru came to know about Gurdjieff through mystical vision?
Let me elaborate on another hilarious example. This one is my favorite:
There is an Upanishad called Chandogya upanishad, one of the oldest upanishad which is famous for the greatest statement in spirituality: Tat tvam Asi – You are that. It was an instruction given to Svethakethu by his father. Svethakethu is also mentioned in Brihadaranyaka upanishad and Kausitaki upanishad.
Hi father asked Svethakethu the following question when he comes back from Gurukula after learning Vedas:
“have you, my dear, ever asked for that instruction by which one hears what cannot be heard, by which one perceives what cannot be perceived, by which one knows what cannot be known?
Then he begins to give him a long discourse which you can read here: Oldest Teaching Of Advaita – Excerpt from Chandogya Upanishad
There is also a different guy called Sathyakama mentioned in the same Upanishad. His name is not mentioned in any other Upanishads. He is sent by his Guru Gauthama to tend four hundred cows, and come back when they multiply into a thousand.
As you see, these are two different stories of two different people.
But Osho, when talking about Svethakethu, mixed these two stories as one and told as the story of Svethakethu: http://www.osho.com/iosho/library/read-book/online-library-supreme-svetaketu-taught-78d59dde-9b0?p=867d5652b07d80469abc69481a91e28f
Osho often mixed names like this. But he has said many times that he may not be factually correct. He just quotes those stories to make his point. I never found that as a problem. Because I only focused on the essence anyway.
But Sadhguru, when narrating the story of Svethakethu in a podcast, narrated it exactly the same way as Osho and also made the same mistake. He also merged Sathyakama and Svethakethu’s stories into one. Do you think this is a coincidence?
He also named the podcast as ‘Svethakethu and cows’ while it was Sathyakama who actually went to tend the cows. You can listen to it here: Svetaketu and the Cows
Sadhguru said that he never read any spiritual books and all he knew about spirituality came to him as a mystical transmission when his guru touched him with his walking stick. If it was true, he should have got the right story from Chandogya Upanishad. Instead, how did he get the Osho’s version?
I know there are people who think in a different (and weird) way… They may say ‘Thats probably because both Sadhguru and Osho had a mystical vision to know that the version in Chandogya upanishad is wrong!’… Please don’t say that. Commentaries on Chandogya upanishad were written by many mystics including Adhi Shankara, who was praised by both Osho and Sadhguru.
Here are a few more examples..
- Here is an anecdote given by Sadhguru:
“When you sit in front of a living Guru, you have many problems, judgments, likes and dislikes, because invariably you end up looking at his personality. People have left their Gurus for all kinds of frivolous things. This happened with J. Krishnamurti, a realized being and very wonderful man. There was a certain lady who was very close to him and deeply involved with his work. She was always around him and traveled to many places with him. Once when he was in Amsterdam, Holland, he went into a shop to buy a tie for himself. He was so meticulous about choosing a tie, because he was very conscious about everything and also what he wore. He could throw the tie away if he wanted to, but when he wears it, he wants it to be in a certain way. So he went into the shop and spent nearly four hours picking out one tie. He pulled out every tie in the shop, looked at it, put it on, and then said, “No.” It took him four hours to select just one tie. This woman watched and watched and watched, and as minutes passed, in her mind his enlightenment receded. She thought a man who could be so concerned about what kind of tie he wears couldn’t be enlightened, and she left him. Many such stupid things are done because of your judgments.”
How did Sadhguru came to know about this incidence? There is absolutely only one way he could have known this. You cannot find this information anywhere except in Osho’s talks. Osho knew this because the lady herself told Osho about this incident. You can find this anecdote from the book ‘The Book of Wisdom’ by Osho.
Here is a link to that excerpt:
2. Sadhguru once told a story that supposedly happened when Aristotle met Heraclitus. Heraclitus was trying to empty the ocean with a spoon. You can read the whole story here:
But Aristotle lived between 384–322 BC and Heraclitus lived between c. 535 – c. 475 BC. There is no way that this meeting took place.. Obviously, it seems there is some mistake…
How did Sadhguru know about this anecdote?
Obviously, you cannot find the story of Aristotle meeting Heraclitus, except in a book of Osho. The story is from the book ‘Hidden Harmony’ – Chapter 5, by Osho.
So, did Osho make up this story? No… The story actually happened in St. Augustine’s life. Osho simply mismatched the names because memory doesn’t work perfectly all the time. Sadhguru has simply narrated this story that he read from Osho’s book, without realizing that Osho used wrong names by mistake.
3. In the same link, you can find Sadhguru criticizing the statement “I think, therefore I am” made by Rene Descartes.
But as far as I know, the first person who ever criticized this statement in the context of spiritual enlightenment was Osho. And, Osho actually made a mistake in interpreting Rene’s statement.
Just by reading that statement, anyone can misinterpret that as “Thought is the basis of existence, you cannot exist if you don’t have thoughts’….
But that is not what Rene Descartes intended to say. He said that you can doubt any belief or concept but you cannot deny your own existence. The doubt implies that there is a doubter. A doubter has to exist to doubt. If you don’t exist, you cannot doubt, and you cannot think. So, if you think, that actually means you exist. That is what he meant by saying ‘I think, therefore I am’.
Here is more clear interpretation of the statement that I found in a forum:
“I think, therefore I am” is a crude mistranslation of Descartes’s proposition. It misrepresents the essence of Descartes’s philosophy because most philosophers now regard the process of thinking as a kind of invisible mechanical action (i.e. stimulus-response).
Historians, philosophers and many scientists have repeated this mistranslated phrase for more than three hundred years. But Descartes’s meant something entirely different, as can be seen when “cogito ergo sum” is read in context.
The Latin word, cogito can mean “I think”, “I know” or “I am aware”; ergo always means “therefore” in any context. However, sum can mean “I am” or “I exist”. To suggest that, “I know, therefore I am” would be wrong as it’s possible to accept wrong knowledge as correct.
If you read Descartes’s Philosophical Writings in context, it becomes obvious that he was concerned with awareness rather than with thinking or knowing and with existence rather than being.
Properly translated, Descartes’s phrase should therefore read: “I am aware, therefore I exist” – a subjective rather than a mechanistic generalization. No machine can be self- or globally aware, no matter how many sensors are attached to it.
In fact, the philosopher Spinoza translated cogito ergo sum as “I am conscious, therefore I exist”. Even that’s wrong, although it’s closer to the truth than the usual lazy mistranslation which has unfairly earned Descartes’s the reputation of being a crude reductionist.
It’s true that he stated the obvious: that physiological functions are pseudo-mechanical. But he also insisted that man was much more than a machine because of his subjective awareness of the self and of the universe.”
How will a teacher find out if a student has copied another student? If both made the exact same mistake, then one person must have copied another.
Sadhguru simply used Osho’s example without realizing that Osho himself has interpreted it in the wrong way.
4. Sadhguru once said that seventy percent illness are created by the mind..
Is it a fact? How did he come up with 70%.. Why not 72%? Why not 80%…
Because, Osho also said the exact same thing: http://www.osho.com/read/featured-articles/body-dharma/the-mind-and-disease-hypnosis-and-health
5. Read the following excerpt from Sadhguru:
“So, this is…this whole idea of right and wrong, good and bad is all human nonsense. Existence is not human centric. They have always told you… many religions of the world have been going about telling people “You are made in God’s own image” and once you are in God’s own image naturally the place that you live They believed this for a long time, isn’t it? Even now they are insisting. You’ve heard of this guy Copernicus? Copernicus was one of the first guys who came and said, “Earth is not the center of the universe; not only not the center of the universe, it is not even the center of the solar system.” And he promptly died. That’s not bad thing; it’s a good thing because the next man after him, when he uttered the same thing the local church decided to skin him alive. They wanted to peal his skin off and the skin would not cooperate. So, they decided to burn him alive. The next significant man who has uttered the same thing was Galileo; he said the same thing. Then they got ready with the skin peelers. Then he said, “No, no, no, no; earth is the center of the universe and the cosmos. What is my problem? (Laughter) As you say earth is not only the center of the solar system and not only the center of the universe; it is the very center of the cosmos. Anyway I do not know what is the center of the cosmos, you want to assume. I want to save my skin. That much I know.” (Laughs)
So, today science has proved to you that definitely earth is not the center of the solar system, in the universe you are just a miniscule. Tomorrow morning if you and your planet disappears, if it evaporates nobody is going to miss it. Hmm? The whole solar system evaporates tomorrow morning it will be just a small vacant place that nobody is going to miss in the existence, nothing is going to happen. Yes? God won’t come rescuing you. It’ll just pooff it will go. This is a good thing. This whole idea that I am made in the image of God has left man so crude and he has been walking upon this planet so wantonly without any concern for any other life on this planet, simply because he believes he is in the image of God. If you knew that your life is as significant or as insignificant as that of an ant – it is actually.”
Now read this excerpt from Osho and you will find that the above excerpt is the exact rephrase of what Osho said. It sounds almost like Sadhguru had just read this before coming to the discourse:
“Human beings have thought of God in human terms. It is natural. We have said that God created man in His own image. If horses could think they would deny this: they would say that God created horses in His own image. Because man has created the philosophy, he has made himself the center.
Even God must be in our image. He must have created us in His own image. Man’s ego has asserted these things. This is not knowledge, this is not knowing – this is simply an anthropocentric feeling.
Man feels himself to be the center. We have thought that the earth is the center of the universe and man is the center of creation. These conceptions are false imaginations, dreams of the human ego. God has not created anybody in His own image because the whole is His image. The trees, the earth, the stars; the animals, men, women – everything that exists is His image, not just man.
Then too, we have divided the world into good and evil. The world is not so divided: good and evil are our evaluations. If man did not exist on the earth there would be neither good nor bad. Things would exist, things would be there, but there would be no evaluation. The evaluation is man’s: it is our imposition, it is our projection.”
– From ‘The Eternal Quest’ by Osho
6. Both men surprisingly had the same views about nations:
“Someday, we must overcome the idea of a nation. Such a silly idea – someone draws a line and that becomes so immensely important. These boundaries have become meaningful only because there is such inequity in the world. If there was no inequity, if for example, Mexico and the United States both had the same level of economic prosperity and wellbeing, would one side be guarding the borders with guns, barbed wires and all that, and would the other side be digging tunnels to get here? No. Whoever wants to go in either direction could do so – no one would care. But in our lifetime, we may not see the abolishment of national borders. Europe has done reasonably well, but it looks like they are beginning to step back from the European Union because those who have, do not want to share with those who do not have.”
By Sadhguru – From http://isha.sadhguru.org/blog/lifestyle/does-it-matter-where-you-live/
Osho said the same thing:
“NATIONS HAVE BECOME out of date – but they go on existing and they are the greatest problem. Looking at the world with a bird’s eye view, a strange feeling arises that we have everything – just we need one humanity.
For example, in Ethiopia people were dying – one thousand people per day – and in Europe they were drowning billions of dollars worth of food in the ocean.
Anybody looking from the outside will think humanity is insane. Thousands of people are dying and mountains of butter and other foodstuff is being drowned in the ocean. But Ethiopia is not the concern of the Western world. Their concern is to save their economies and their status quo. And to protect their economic structures, they are willing to destroy food which could have saved the lives of thousands of people.
Problems are worldwide – solutions have also to be worldwide.
And my understanding is absolutely clear, that there are things somewhere where they are not needed, and somewhere else the very life depends on them. A world government means looking at the whole situation of this globe and shifting things where they are needed.
It is one humanity. And once we think of one world, then there is only one economy.”
- From ‘Hari Om Tat Sat’ by Osho
7. Here are a couple of comparisons as well:
Sarada giving the knife to vivekananda:
Alexander and immortality:
8. Have you heard about a story told by Sadhguru about Ramakrishna’s obsession over food to keep his body alive? Try as much as you can to find out the source of the story and you can only find this story in Osho’s talks. I have read in many places Ramakrishna liked certain fruits and sweets. But the conversation between Sarada and Ramakrishna regarding the obsession over food and Ramakrishna saying that it is necessary to keep his body alive seems to be just an imaginary incident created by Osho. Even if it was true, it is highly unlikely that both Osho and Sadhguru somehow independently got access to this information which is not found in any other sources.
I have all three volumes of ‘Gospel of Ramakrishna’ which is the most honest account of Ramakrishna’s life incidents. When you read the book, you will feel like watching a movie. Everything that happened was exactly recorded by the author and there is not even a single place where it is mentioned that he had an obsession over food and he was often checking the kitchen to find out what is cooking. But Ramakrishna always used to ask for a glass of water which was necessary for him to come out of Samadhi.
- Sadhguru has read or listened to Osho’s talks
- He made the same factual errors that Osho made when quoting Osho’s words.
- But he claims that he knew all this when his guru touched him with his walking stick.
Osho is that magic walking stick which touched Sadhguru!
But he never mentions Osho. I have been a fan of Sadhguru ever since I saw him in 2004. But I can’t appreciate the fact that he has been repeating everything that was said by Osho, but never credits him. And, I feel that it is an injustice to my first spiritual master, Osho.
I think it is really important for people to know this truth. So, I am updating this post now with these details. You can find the original content that I wrote for this post, below the picture:
Update: 14th Oct 2017
Many people may object to this by saying that enlightened people talk the same way and talk in the same language. So, let me answer to that objection here:
There is a difference between some similarities and exact imitations.. Many people who have read a lot of both Osho’s and Sadhguru’s work can see that Sadhguru has indeed read Osho.
Yes, enlightened people speak the same language, but not in the exact same way.. You and I may speak the same language, but if I do a mimicry of your way of talking, that is different.
All human beings look alike because they have two eyes, a nose that looks different from a dog’s nose, a neck that is much shorter than a giraffe’s neck, have no tail and have a much sharper intelligence than a crow.. The same way, all enlightened people say the same thing to a certain extent because they have tasted the same non-dual reality and they are looking at the world and people in the perspective of non-dual reality as well.
But, identical twins have extraordinary resemblance with each other. This is not the same level of similarity that you see in all human beings in general.. The same way, Osho’s talks and Sadhguru’s talks (most importantly the oldest talks of Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev) have the kind of similarity that identical twins have.
The original content that I wrote few months before:
When I first saw Sadhguru at the marina beach satsang (I think it was in 2003), I was in a great joy to have seen a living enlightened master. I wanted to know more about him and Isha and I eventually fell in love with the whole thing. Everybody has seen many similarities between the two great gurus, especially in the clarity of speech and the way of putting things that are beyond the physical realm in beautiful words.
Osho always insisted on being with a living enlightened master, but he left his body in 1990. Even though he said he would still exist outside the physical realm, understanding or feeling the presence of a master who is no longer in his body is not really possible for everyone. Sadhguru not only fulfilled my desire to be in the presence of a living enlightened master but has also consecrated Dhyanalinga with all the seven chakras which graces the meditators with the same power that is radiated in the presence of a living enlightened master. Sadhguru says that to be near Dhyanalinga and to be near an enlightened master is the same thing. To know more about Dhyanalinga, visit www.dhyanalinga.org/
I was always wondering if Sadhguru ever talked about Osho and finally came to know he has, in response to the question raised by a seeker, the same question that I had in my mind. Here is what he said:
“When a person is influenced by somebody and is in deep appreciation of someone he can see the same qualities in other people who he appreciates in a similar way. Many people come up to me and tell me I speak like Vivekananda, some say I speak like Krishnamurti, others think I speak like Rajneesh. I neither speak nor dress nor live like Rajneesh or anyone else. It’s the people’s love that makes them see things that way and that is fine. Its not that I have not spoken about Rajneesh-I have. It’s just that his approach was different than what we have taken so it is not necessary for me to speak about Rajneesh. I don’t speak of JK also because his approach is very different as well.
With all due respect to Rajneesh and all the phenomenal work he has done in his own way, some of the things they did was in reaction to the social situation in the world then. The society was at a certain stage at that time and he wanted to provoke people to change in a certain way. It is not my way because I don’t think it would produce the kind of result I want. You know my mission is to plant undercover yogis-there is a need to plant people who are at the peak of inner well being to work in society and change the society from within rather than provoking and creating a reaction.”
Also, for people who are skeptical about Osho due to the controversies around him, I would like to include some excerpts from various talks by Osho that matches what Sadhguru has said on the similar topics. If you have listened to Sadhguru’s discourses, you will immediately recognize it. In fact, even though there are a few differences in the approach and the vision that both have had, I often feel that Sadhguru is the extension of Osho’s work.
Let us move on to the excerpts:
Osho about memories of previous lives
In this life, what we suffer today is forgotten the next day and what we suffer the next day is forgotten the day after. But the memories of your previous lives will break upon you in their entirety, not in fragments. Will you be able to bear it? You gain the capacity to bear the memories of past lives only. when you are able to bear the worst conditions of life. Whatsoever happens, nothing should make a difference to you. When no memory of this life can be a cause of anxiety to you, only then can you be led into the memories of past lives. Otherwise those memories may become great traumas for you, and the door to such traumas cannot be opened unless you have the capacity and worthiness to face them.
- Dimensions Beyond the Known CHAPTER 2
I told you earlier that after awaking from sleep your dream is remembered for about one hour. Similarly, after taking a new birth, for about six months, up to the age of six months, almost everything is remembered. Afterwards it slowly becomes lost. Those who are very imaginative or very sensitive may remember a little longer, but those who have made efforts and who have experimented with being aware during the previous life can remember for a long time.
- Dimensions Beyond the Known CHAPTER 3
WHAT ABOUT THE OTHER MIRACLES REPORTED IN THE BIBLE? FOR EXAMPLE, THE ONE WHERE JESUS FED THOUSANDS OF PEOPLE WITH TWO LOAVES OF BREAD AND FIVE FISH. CAN YOU EXPLAIN IT?
Many things are possible. Nothing is a miracle, nothing. Even materialization is not a miracle: it is a science. Materialization is possible. So are many other things. Something can be brought here by an unknown route. You are not aware of the route, but something suddenly appears here. That is not materialization.
- The Great Challenge CHAPTER 9
Temples used to function as receptive instruments. Though godliness is everywhere and human beings are also present everywhere, only in some specific circumstances within us do we become attuned to that godliness. So temples served as centers of receptivity to enable us to feel the divine existence, godliness, spiritual elevation. The whole arrangement in temples was motivated with this end in view. Different types of people thought up various arrangements, but that is not of much consequence. It makes no difference if various manufacturers produce radios incorporating their own specialities, with different shapes and forms, as long as the ultimate purpose is the same.
- Hidden Mysteries Chapter 1
On breathing and about Crucifixion of Jesus
Yoga divides man into two parts: the sun part and the moon part. The sun is symbolic of inner positivity and the moon is symbolic of inner negativity. Sun does not mean the outer sun nor does moon mean the outer moon. These words are used for the inner universe. There is even one breath that is known as the sun breath and another breath that is known as the moon breath. Every forty to sixty minutes, your breath changes from one nostril to the other. If you need more heat in the body, or if you suddenly grow angry, your sun breath starts functioning. Yoga says that if you use your moon breath when you are angry, then you cannot be angry at all, because the moon breath creates a deep coolness inside. The negative is cool, silent, still. The positive is hot, vibrant with energy, active. The sun is the active part in you and the moon is the inactive part in you. When one first becomes acquainted with the sun, the light is burning hot, like a flame. If you analyze the inner life of Buddha or of Jesus with this distinction in mind, many things which are ordinarily hidden will become apparent. For example, whenever an enlightened one like Buddha is born, his early life will be very revolutionary. The moment one enters the inner dimension, the first experience is of a fiery flame. But the older Buddha grows, the more an inner coolness is felt. The more perfect the moon stage becomes, the more the revolutionary fervor is lost. That is why Buddha’s words are not revolutionary. Jesus did not have this opportunity. He was crucified while he was still a revolutionary and he died, as far as Christianity is concerned, at the age of thirty-three. If you compare Buddha’s sayings with those of Jesus there is a clearcut difference. Jesus’ sayings look like those of a young man – hot. Buddha’s early sayings were also like this, but he was not crucified for them; he lived to be eighty. The reason he was not crucified is that India has always known that this happens. Whenever a person moves within, whenever a buddha enters into himself, his first expression is fiery, revolutionary, rebellious. He bursts open and explodes into fire. But then that phase disappears and ultimately there is only the moon: silent, without any fire, with only light. That is why India has never killed anyone; that is why India has never behaved the way the Greeks behaved with Socrates or the Jews with Jesus
- The Great Challenge CHAPTER 9
About sound and Sanskrit language
Western languages emphasize the linguistic rather than the phonetic, whereas the vedic view gives more importance not so much to the meaning of the written or spoken word as to the special sound it should produce, and the composition of that sound. Hence the Sanskrit language is phonetic, not linguistic; the emphasis is more on the sound than on the word. And so, for thousands of years it was felt that these valuable scriptures should not be written down, because it was natural that no sooner would it be written down than the emphasis on sound would be lost. The insistence was that the knowledge be passed on by word of mouth, rather than in writing, because in writing words down – they would be mere words, and the subtle sensations associated with the sound would be lost and so become meaningless. If we write down the word Rama, those who are reading it will say the word in many different ways. Someone will put more emphasis on ”r” and someone else, more emphasis on ”a,” and still somebody else will put more emphasis on ”m.” It will depend on the individual reader. So as soon as a word is written down, the effect of sound is destroyed. Now, to understand the effect of the sound of those words, a whole decoding exercise to pronounce the words correctly will have to be done. So for thousands of years there was a strong insistence on not writing down any scripture, because the ancient seers did not want the phonetic arrangement lost. The scripture had to be passed on to others directly by word of mouth, so scriptures were known as shrutis, meaning that which is learnt by listening. What was passed down in the form of written books was never accepted as scripture. It was all scientifically based on the arrangement of sound. At some places the sound had to be soft, and at others it had to be loud. It was very difficult to write these words in script form. The day the scriptures were reduced to writing, the essential, inherent, original, inner arrangement of sound was lost. It was no longer necessary to understand only through listening. You can read a scripture – it is available in the market. Now there is no relationship or relevance to sound. It is important to note that the emphasis of the scriptures was never on the meaning. The emphasis on meaning became relevant later, when we reduced those scriptures to writing. If some thing written down has no meaning it will look insane, so meaning has necessarily to be given to the written word. There are still some parts of vedic lore where no meaning could be deciphered – and these are the real parts, because they are totally phonetic. They do not convey any meaning.
- Hidden Mysteries Chapter 1