In my groups, especially the ones without structure, I discover in me a state of alertness, watchfulness about the group and myself, an aliveness and silence that I only experienced after doing a lot of meditations.
Is this “impersonal space” of the group leader comparable to meditation as I feel it or am I fooling myself because I do not need to look at my own problems while I’m leading a group? Do I love group-leading so much because it gives me the opportunity of meditation or am I just an addict of “group energy”?
Osho, can you please comment?
Do you want my comment theoretical or practical? Let us start from theoretical. Theoretically you are a great group-leader; theoretically in the groups great meditative states arise in you. But you know and I know and everybody else knows that practically the situation is different.
Everybody wants to be a leader, everybody wants to dominate, to direct, to guide, it does not matter whether he knows what he is advising people. What matters is that his advice makes him feel good – that he is a wise man. It makes him feel good that so many people are looking up towards him to be guided. And naturally, you have understood the point that when you become involved with the problems of other people you forget your own problems.
Forgetting your own problems creates a certain peace. When you are left alone meditating, it is very difficult, because how to forget your problems…? When you close your eyes they are all standing there in a queue.
One of the Indian Mohammedan emperors was imprisoned by his son because the old man was not dying but was going on and on…. And the son was already old. He had waited too long to become the emperor.
Finally, he decided, “This old guy may live longer than me.” He imprisoned his own father. It was easy because they were in the same palace, and all the armies were under the son – he was the commander in chief. The old man was imprisoned in his own palace.
The next day he sent a message to his son: “I have ruled enough. There was no need to imprison me. You should have simply asked me and I would have given you the empire. Now, it does not mean anything to me. I wish you well. Live long and let the empire prosper, but make a little arrangement for me. I want thirty children so that I can teach them the holy Koran.”
His son, who had now declared himself the emperor, said to the court, “Do you see the psychology? The old man cannot drop the idea of being the guide, the leader, the wise man. Even if it is only of thirty urchins brought from the streets, it does not matter, but he is the leader and the teacher. Those thirty children will become the substitute for the whole empire.”
Sigmund Freud and his company were not born yet but the son was saying something immensely significant as far as psychology is concerned.
If you cannot meditate alone, your meditation in the group is false.
If you cannot be silent alone, then your silence in silencing others is not authentic.
I am reminded of a famous story….