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OSHO Online Library   »   The Books   »   This, This, A Thousand Times This: The Very Essence of Zen
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Chapter 11: No Beginning, No End

These pigmy politicians which come and go as the seasons change think themselves sovereign. We have a different definition of sovereignty: only individuals who know themselves are sovereigns. The days of the kings and the queens and the emperors are finished. There are only four kings still alive - in the playing cards. And the fifth is not even a king but only a husband of a queen. And rumors are that Prince Philip, the husband of Queen Elizabeth, himself is a queen. I cannot guarantee. But this is all that is left: four kings in the playing cards and the fifth king who is a queen.

That world is no longer here. Now the individual is arising on the horizon as a sovereign of his own being. Everybody is a sovereign, a king of his own consciousness. Here we are creating not slaves belonging to any religion, but sovereigns, knowers, individuals - free, with their wings unfettered. We are destroying their cages, howsoever precious and antique.

But it is strange that I have never come across a single journalist who will report exactly what is happening here. Perhaps first they should join in the game, experience the taste of my presence, the taste of this commune, and only then write or speak anything. Otherwise, whatever they say as an outsider is going to be false. Only the insider’s view can have any validity.

This is one of the most meaningful anecdotes.

A monk came from Joshu Osho’s assembly to Ukyu.

Both are great masters and it was almost a natural phenomenon to move from one master’s assembly to another just to see whether the same experience is happening everywhere. Ukyu was very famous, particularly because he was the first Zen master to use the stick.

A monk came from Joshu Osho’s assembly to Ukyu, who said to him, “What do you find in Joshu’s teaching? Is there anything different from what you find here?”
The monk said, “Nothing different.”
Ukyu said, “If there is nothing different, why don’t you go back there?” and he hit him with his stick.

He is making the point clear that every master has some uniqueness. The ultimate experience may be the same but the paths to it are many. According to the master, different flowers blossom on the path.

“If there is no difference, then why have you come?” - and he hit him with his stick at least to make it clear that that much is different: “Your master has never hit you.”

The monk said, “If your stick had eyes to see, you would not strike me like that.”

The monk is not a humble man but arrogant. The hit of Ukyu was out of compassion to wake him up. Rather than being thankful, he said, “If your stick had eyes to see, you would not strike me like that.”

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