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

Chapter 5: Dust against the Wind

He said, “Yes, I have seen.”

Ramakrishna said, “Do you know what is the purpose of those trees?”

He said, “That I have never heard and it is not written in the scriptures. What is the purpose of those trees? You tell me.”

Ramakrishna said, “The purpose of those trees is that when you dive in the Ganges, your sins have to leave you because of the power of the Ganges. Those sins sit on the top of those tall trees. When you come back out of the Ganges, they jump upon you again! So it is really futile. If you want to go you can go, but avoid one thing: if you dive in the Ganges, don’t come out! Then be gone forever; otherwise those sins won’t leave you. And they will take revenge, they will jump upon you with vengeance.”

And this is literally true. The religious people, the so-called religious people, think that they can do a certain ritual and the sin is finished, and they are free to do the sin again! And once you know the trick how to finish it, why bother? You can go on doing as many sins as you can - the Ganges is always there. And now there is no need to go to the Ganges either: you can bring the Ganges in pipes to your home, so every day, early morning or evening, you take a bath. Evening will be better, so the whole day’s sins are finished and you are as pure as a lotus flower.

Buddha says nothing can help you. There is nowhere to hide from two things: the result of your deeds and death. They are going to happen.

Then what should we do? Become conscious, and in becoming conscious both disappear. In becoming conscious your actions automatically go through a transformation. The conscious man cannot do anything wrong, and the conscious man comes to know that, “There is no death for my consciousness. The body will die, the mind will die, but not my innermost being. I am eternal. Amritasya putrah - I am the son of eternity, I belong to the eternal existence.”

Consciousness brings these two truths home. First it transforms your world by transforming your actions; secondly it transforms your interiority by making you aware that you are eternal. When you know you are eternal, when you know that you have always been and you will always be, all your values of life immediately start changing. Then whatsoever was important yesterday is no longer important, and whatever was never important before becomes important - because now you think in terms of eternity and not in terms of time.

To think in terms of time is politics: to think in terms of eternity is religion.

Enough for today.