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OSHO Online Library   »   The Books   »   Zen: The Path of Paradox, Vol. 3
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Chapter 5: Throwing You Back to Yourself

A monk asks, “What is the buddha?”
Tosu (the Master) answers, “The buddha.”
Monk: “What is the Tao?”
Tosu: “The Tao.”
Monk: “What is Zen?’’
Tosu: “Zen.”

Truth cannot be said, but one cannot be silent about it either. Truth cannot be said because words are inadequate. You cannot be silent about it either, because silence is also inadequate. Words are noisy, true; they make much fuss, much noise and say nothing. Silence is just the absence of noise. If the positive noise cannot say anything, how can the absence say anything? Silence is just absence. If even the positive is impotent, how can the negative be potent?

The second thing has to be understood very well, because there have been many schools and many philosophers who think that truth cannot be said; so they keep silence. But you cannot say it even through silence. Silence may show only that are inadequate, that’s all. But the silence cannot be enough. And there is a danger: the silence may be sheer ignorance. Too many words create one danger - the man becomes a parrot, a pundit, or a professor. Silence can create a sort of humbug. There are people who keep silent, and others think that they must have come to know because they are silent.

Once a man came to me - many years have passed since then - and he said, “I have been to Baba Muktananda Paramhansa. I asked a few very fundamental questions, and he kept silent - he is a great man, he knows.”

The same day, I was leaving for another town, so I told the man, “You come with me, and for three days you be silent with me. And I will see.” I gave him orange clothes; he was my first sannyasin - a bogus, humbug sannyasin. And I told him, “For three days you will be Baba Chuktananda Paramhansa.”

He said, “Never heard of this name, Chuktananda.”

I told him, “I also have not heard it. I have just coined it this very moment. “Chukta” means one who has paid all his debts. You are free, utterly free. Your world has come to an end.”

And he asked me, “Then what have I to do?”

I told him, “You have nothing to do at all. You keep silent, you simply sit. All that is needed I will do. If somebody asks you something, you can make any gesture, or you can close your eyes, or you can look upwards or downwards whatsoever you feel. But don’t utter a word.”

And in three days the whole town was worshipping him. In the night he was allowed - when everybody had left - he could talk to me. He would hold my legs and he would say, “Osho, what are you doing? I feel so embarrassed when people touch my feet,” he would say. “And so many people! What has gone wrong? How do you manage it?”

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