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OSHO Online Library   »   The Books   »   Sufis: The People of the Path, Vol. 1
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Chapter 15: Adding Oil to the Fire

The disciple learns much by his radiant presence. He starts learning to be more present, to be more alert, to be more total. And on the other hand the master is absolutely absent, because he has no ego. Nothing like the idea of “I” exists in him anymore. There is absolute silence, no-selfness - what Sufis call fana. The master has disappeared.

First the disciple learns his presence, and by and by he becomes capable of entering into his absence.

This is a kind of art - of being present and absent simultaneously. It is the greatest art because it is the greatest paradox: to be present and yet not to be present - present in the sense of presence, of awareness, consciousness, and absent in the sense that there is no self, no ego. This emptiness and this light which fills the emptiness cannot be conveyed, communicated through words. The disciple has to be with the master as an apprentice. He has to taste the being of the master.

This small parable will throw much light.

A certain man who was fond of studying all kinds of systems of thought wrote to a dervish master, Abdul-Aziz of Mecca, asking whether he could talk to him in order to make comparisons.

Pay attention to each word. Sufis are very, very particular about words. They don’t use many words - if they do, they use them very telegraphically.

A certain man who was fond of studying all kinds of systems of thought wrote to a dervish master, Abdul-Aziz of Mecca, asking whether he could talk to him in order to make comparisons.

This is what millions of people go on doing in the name of seeking and searching for truth.

First there are the worldly people who don’t bother about truth, who never seek and never search. Out of millions of these worldly people who go on and on doing the nonessential, sometimes somebody becomes a little fed up. Seeing the futility of all these things that he has been doing, he starts seeking for truth. He wants to know the meaning of life or who he is. But again there is a great trap. The trap is that he may start looking into scriptures, into philosophical systems. First he was lost in the world of things, now he will be lost in the world of thoughts. And the second is far more dangerous than the first! Let me repeat it, because ordinarily you think the second is better than the first. It is not so.

It is very easy to awaken from the first because it is so stupid. If somebody is really stupid and thick, only then will he go on and on seeking money and power and prestige and respectability, and he will never become aware that he is seeking rubbish - for it you need a really dense head.

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