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OSHO Online Library   »   The Books   »   The Great Challenge
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Chapter 1: Flight of the Alone to the Alone

A mind that waits is waiting for the unknown, because what is going to happen cannot be known beforehand; you cannot even conceive of it. You may have heard something about it, but that is not your knowledge; it remains unknown. A mind that is waiting for the unknown is a mind that is meditative.

When you are waiting for the unknown your knowledge becomes a barrier, because the more aware you are of your knowledge the more solidly you imprison yourself. You must not be in a “knowing” mood, you must be completely ignorant; only then can the unknown come to you. The moment your ignorance becomes aware of itself, the moment you know that you don’t know, that is the moment you begin to wait for the unknown.

There are two types of ignorant people. The first type are not aware of their ignorance - they automatically think that they know. This is ignorant knowledge. The other type are those who are aware of their ignorance. This is a knowing ignorance. And the moment you become aware of your ignorance you come to the point where knowing begins.

A pundit, a person who thinks he knows, can never be a religious man. A person who thinks that he knows is bound to be nonreligious, because the knowledgeable ego is the most subtle thing. But the moment you know your ignorance there is no ego, there is no space in which the ego can exist. The greatest attack on the ego is to become aware of your ignorance; the greatest strengthening of your ego is to claim knowledge.

The second thing that I would like to say about meditation is that your mind must be totally aware of its ignorance. And you can only become aware of your ignorance when your accumulated, borrowed knowledge is known as not-knowledge. It is not knowledge, it is simply information, and information is not knowledge even though that is the way it appears.

A person who knows is not dogmatic about his knowledge; he hesitates. But a person who thinks that he knows is dogmatic, assertive; he is absolutely certain.

You must become aware of the fact that what you have not known cannot be your knowledge. You cannot borrow knowledge: that is the difference between a theological mind and a religious mind. Theology is one of the most irreligious things in the world and theologians are the most irreligious people, because what has been claimed by them as knowledge is borrowed.

Knowledge never makes any claims, because inherent in it is the phenomenon that the moment one knows, the I is lost. The moment one knows, the ego is no longer there. Knowledge comes when the ego is not, so the ego cannot claim to have it. The ego can only collect information; it can accumulate many facts, it can quote scriptures.

To go into meditation is to transcend your accumulated knowledge. The moment this knowledge is transcended, learning begins. And a learner is something quite different: he never claims that he knows, he is always aware of his ignorance. And the more aware of it he is, the more receptive he becomes to the new.

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