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OSHO Online Library   »   The Books   »   The Dhammapada: The Way of the Buddha, Vol. 8
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Chapter 3: Freedom Has to Be Earned

While a man desires a woman,
his mind is bound
as closely as a calf to its mother.

As you would pluck an autumn lily,
pluck the arrow of desire.

For he who is awake
has shown you the way of peace.
Give yourself to the journey.

“Here shall I make my dwelling,
in the summer and the winter,
and in the rainy season.”
So the fool makes his plans,
sparing not a thought for his death.

Death overtakes the man
who, giddy and distracted by the world,
cares only for his flocks and his children.
Death fetches him away
as a flood carries off a sleeping village.

His family cannot save him,
not his father nor his sons.

Know this.
Seek wisdom, and purity.
Quickly clear the way.

Niravo asked just the other day, “Is Jesus Christ coming back soon to earth as he had promised?” Such nonsense questions go on in people’s minds and not only in the minds of ordinary, common people: the so-called religious, theological, philosophical intelligentsia too keeps itself involved in such absurdities.

Christ is not a person, it is an experience. Jesus had it, you can have it. Christ is synonymous with buddha. What we call in the East the buddha, the awakened, the West has called the christ, the crowned one. Jesus Christ cannot come back, but you can become christ any moment. Christ is already hidden in you as a seed; you are all bodhisattvas, buddhas in essence, in seed. Just a little effort, a little understanding and you can bloom, and your fragrance can be released. Jesus bloomed, Buddha bloomed, so can you. Why wait for Jesus Christ’s coming? That is avoiding the fundamental quest. Why not become a christ? What is the point of waiting for somebody else to come and deliver you - and how can anybody else deliver you?

The deliverance that will come from somebody else will not be much of a deliverance. Freedom has to be earned, it cannot be given; if it is given, it can be taken away. If it is given it is not yours, it is not your growth. And anything that is given to you remains only an accumulation on the outside. It never becomes part of your interiority.

Hence Buddha says:

Know this.
Seek wisdom, and purity.
Quickly clear the way.

Don’t waste time in unnecessary things.

Niravo, are you cuckoo or something? Why wait for Jesus Christ? What wrong has he done to you? Enough is enough. The poor man came once and you crucified him; now are you hankering to crucify him again, or what?

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