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OSHO Online Library   »   The Books   »   The Dhammapada: The Way of the Buddha, Vol. 4

Chapter 9: Awake to the Law

Purity means living out of no-mind, living spontaneously, moment to moment like a child, innocently - living from a state of not knowing. All knowledge is cunning, and all knowledge corrupts. Living from a state of not knowing - that is purity.

Socrates says: I know only one thing, that I know nothing - this is purity.

Buddha used to tell his disciples, “Please never ask me metaphysical questions, because I don’t know. Don’t ask about God and don’t ask about the soul, and don’t ask about heaven and hell.” He had a list prepared of eleven questions; those eleven questions contained all the questions philosophy is full of.

Whenever he would enter a new town, his disciples would go around and tell people, “Please don’t ask these eleven questions, because Buddha will not answer these questions. He is interested only in practical questions. Ask about greed and how to get rid of it; ask about anger and how to go beyond it. Ask about possessiveness and how to drop it, ask about transformation. Ask how you can drop the mind and attain to meditation. But don’t ask metaphysical questions because they don’t help you at all. They create belief, and with belief comes doubt. And divided into belief and doubt you become a schizophrenic, you become zero. You lose your integrity.”

But he who lives purely and self-assured.. Now, this word self-assured is also not rightly translated. What Buddha means is one who trusts his own being - it is not self-assured. Self-assured gives the sense of ego; Buddha means an egoless trust. One who trusts in the whole existence also trusts in himself, because he is part of the whole. He listens to his heart’s voice and follows it. Unafraid he goes with his heart. He trusts his intuition. And once you have known the art of how to listen to your intuition, you will be surprised: intellect can err, intuition never errs - it is infallible. It always directs you in the right course of action.

.in quietness and virtue.. “Quietness” means meditation, thoughtlessness, no thought disturbing, the lake of consciousness absolutely without any waves and ripples. And the consequence of such silence is virtue. Virtue is not something practiced by you; you cannot practice virtue. If you practice virtue, on the surface you will wear a mask, but behind the surface you will go on living in your old vicious ways. Of course, you can hide from others, but how can you hide from yourself?

That’s what happens to your priests, your so-called saints; their whole life becomes very cunning - they say one thing, they live a totally different life. They are bound to be so because the virtue is cultivated.

A sociologist was taking a survey based on the sexual proclivities of various national and ethnic groups. He approached an elderly Italian gentleman in a black suit and, after the usual preliminaries, asked him how often he had sexual intercourse.

“Oh, maybe ten, twelve times a year,” stated the old fellow.