When the Shoe Fits by Osho – Monkey Mountain (Chapter 5)

Posted: April 27, 2010 in Book Notes
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[Quotes by Zhuangzi 庄子]

The Prince of Wu took a boat

to Monkey Mountain.

As soon as the monkeys saw him

they all fled in panic and hid in the treetops.

One monkey, however, remained, completely unconcerned,

swinging from branch to branch –

an extraordinary display.

The prince shot an arrow at the monkey,

but the monkey dexterously

caught the arrow in midflight.

At this the prince ordered his attendants

to make a concerted attack.

In an instant the monkey was shot

full of arrows and fell dead.

Then the prince turned to his companion Yen Pu’i,

“You see what happened?

This animal advertised his cleverness.

He trusted his own skill.

He thought no one could touch him.

Remember that!

Do not rely on distinction and talent

when you deal with men!”

When they returned home,

Yen Pu’i became a disciple of a sage

to get rid of everything that made him outstanding.

He renounced every pleasure.

He learned to hide every distinction.

Soon no one in the kingdom

knew what to make of him.

Thus they held him in awe.

  • Tao says whatsoever is beautiful in you, hide it, never act it out; whatsoever is truthful in you, valuable, hide it, because whenever a truth is hidden in the heart, it grows like a seed hidden in the earth.
    • Whatsoever is wrong, you hide it; you don’t want it to be known by others.
    • Whatsoever is beautiful, even if it is not, you try to advertise it, you magnify it, you display it.
    • The ugly grows and the beautiful is lost.
    • If you have something ugly, show it to others: it disperses.
  • A man of Tao remains ordinary, absolutely ordinary.
    • Nobody knows who he is, nobody knows what he carries within him, what treasure.
    • He never advertises, he never tries to display.
    • The mind goes on finding ways and means to be outstanding.
      • If you cannot be anything else, at least you can be the tallest dwarf – but be something, somebody!
      • The whole eduction, culture, civilization teaches you to be outstanding.
    • If you want to be extraordinary, outstanding, you will always remain uneasy and tense because you have to prove something, you have to convince others.
  • Ego is a false phenomenon. It is the accumulation of others’ opinions, it is not knowledge of the self.
    • You are not satisfied with yourself, yo are satisfied only when others appreciate you.
    • You may have a valuable stone, but it is not enough; others must appreciate it. Others’ opinion is more valuable, not your being.
  • Everybody wants to talk about himself and it becomes a mutual understanding – if he is boring you he will allow himself to be bored by you.
    • You are just waiting – when he stops his display, you can start your own.
    • You fulfill my ego, I fulfill yours.
    • Through this continuous false display, you only achieve a false feeling that you are important, extraordinary.
  • Proofs are needed only for lies; truth needs no proof. It is – simply it is.
    • That is why you cannot prove God – because he is the ultimate truth.
  • A man who is in search of self-knowledge will remain ordinary in the eyes of others. He will remain silent, live silently, enjoy life silently.
    • You have to go alone – you will never reach it with the crowd.
    • If you are an exhibitionist then you will remain a commodity, a thing. You can never become a person, because ‘person’ is hidden deep in the recesses of being. It is the deepest possibility in the whole of existence. You are the greatest abyss. Nobody else can go with you.
  • What is the deepest character in the monkey?
    • It is copying, imitation.
    • Gurdjieff used to say that you cannot become a man unless you stop being a monkey.
  • If you look to your need, you can be satisfied (needs are few). Life can become a blissful existence.
    • But if you imitate, then millions of unnecessary needs crowd all around. There is no end.
    • You see a musician and you want to be a musician; you see an actor and you want to be an actor; you see a doctor and you want to be a doctor. You want to be everything except yourself – and that is all you can be, nothing else.
  • You will have to to grow your own way, but absorbing the Buddha will make you more understanding.
  • The difference between an authentic disciple and a follower who is false.
    • A disciple is one who is ready to learn, ready to absorb – one who is open, receptive – one who is ready to become a womb.
    • He is not antagonistic, he is not fighting or arguing.
    • He is trying to understand, when you try to understand, the head stop functioning.
    • A disciple is heart-orientated, not head-orientated.
    • He loves the master, absorbs him, and then goes on his own way.
  • Whenever you are not fighting an not in search of somebody to imitate, your conscious falls from the head to the heart. Then you are open, then you are simply in love. That is what is meant by shraddha, faith, trust. It is neither belief nor disbelief.
    • Trust is in the heart. Belief and disbelief is in the head.
  • A real master never gives you rules, he gives you the eye.
    • He simply gives you the light and says, ” Now take the light and go into the darkness, this light will show you the path.”
    • A false master gives you the map. Don’t go astray, follow this map.
    • A real master will not give you a window to look at the truth through, he will bring you out under the sky – simply give you the feeling, the understanding.
    • If you have the light, then there is no need for the map; you will find your path.
  • It is easy to copy, difficult to understand.
    • Copy is easy – just follow the rules.
  • A man will never ask for clear-cut rules, he will ask for understanding so he can find his own way, so he can move in the wide world. He need not have a map with him, no need for any compass. Just your inner light will show your path. And there is beauty because there is freedom.
  • If you want to remain a leader you have to be tough. If you want to remain a leader you have to go on display.
  • A leader is always a follower of his own followers because he always has to look where you are going, what you are doing. He must know beforehand where the wind is blowing so that can be just ahead.
    • The secret of being a great leader – you must be able to know what the people want. You must give them a slogan before they become aware of what they want; then they follow you.
  • A man of wisdom always looks at every problem from the other’s point of view also.
    • One must be flexible enough to see what the other is feeling at that moment.
  • Man is more violent than any animal.
    • Tigers kill, lions kill, but just to eat, never otherwise.
    • Man kills not only to eat, he enjoys killing – hunting is a game for him.
    • Man never comes to an understanding; unless he kills, there seems to be no solution.
    • Animals have more understanding – two dogs fighting is a mock fight – to come to an understanding – to know who is stronger and the weak knows it is futile to fight – so he stops!
  • You can give good advice to others it doesn’t mean that you have attained that truth.
    • This is how sometimes teachers are left behind and disciples move fast and reach the goal.
  • Don’t rely on distinction and talent when you deal with men. Remain hidden!
  • Don’t display, don’t exhibit; otherwise you will cause unnecessary troubles, you will invite unnecessary problems.
    • Every man is an egoist – nobody wants you to be superior to them.
    • Jesus was extraordinary, the masses could not tolerate his superiority, they had to kill him.
    • Socrates was poisoned – people can forgive fools, but they cannot forgive wise man.
  • Simply take the advice and become changed. Do not be concerned.
    • What is the use of thinking about the bottle? Just take the content. If the content is good, forget the container.
    • Simply take the message, do not bother about the vehicle.
  • There are only two forces that equalize – love and death.
  • You are unique yet one with existence – this paradox cannot be explained; you have to experience it.
  • A person is not a utility, a thing is a utility.
    • If you are a doctor – it means that society is using you as a doctor. It is a function not a personality. You become a thing.
    • Be alive, and be a person.
  • A rose flowers, not for those who will pass, not for those who will see, not for those who will smell the fragrance. No! It flowers on its own.
    • Many are benefited by it, but it is not for them, it is for one’s own self. He has attained his own destiny. Then there is fulfillment.
    • Just be a flower, then you can love, you can share.
    • A flower flowers; it does not need any advertisement. If somebody partakes of its pleasure and happiness, it is okay; if nobody passes by the spot, it is also okay.
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