Loose Change

Quotes to Live by – Osho

Posted in Musings, Osho, Spirituality by Raj on 06/02/2010

Here are some of Osho’s quotes I’ve come across when reading his various books. Some of these make sense at the first glance; others need a great deal of thought in order to to be truly appreciated. However, all are equally meaningful and equally profound — even when stripped of the context they were found in. And, all are equally relevant to our daily lives.

Every time I read one of these quotes, it gives me a deeper appreciation of existence. May they enrich your life too…

P.S. I’ve put in my own commentary in brackets.


Never commit the same mistake again and again, that’s true—invent new mistakes every day. Be creative. Risk in new ways. And that’s what sannyas is all about: to be risky, to live dangerously, to live without security and safety. To be tremendously in love with life is what sannyas is.

Resolution means totality, commitment, involvement, a quantum leap into something, into something which is not yet clearly known. Taking a risk is resolution. But the mind is a coward. It avoids risks; it seeks security, safety. Resolution is one of the ways to go beyond misery, schizophrenia.

We have been taught to condemn ourselves; we have been taught that we are worthless. We have been told in a thousand and one ways that we are dirt and that has become part of our conditioning. The first step in sannyas is: Respect yourself, because if you don’t respect yourself you cannot respect anybody else in the world. Not even God can be respected, because even God comes number two. Love yourself. If you can’t love yourself you cannot love anybody else.

[Sannyas is not wearing maroon robes, or clutching rosary beads. Sannyas is not dancing in public or doing Kundalini meditation. Don’t get me wrong: I’m not saying that these are not part of it. Yes they are, but only as tools. Sannyas is an attitude. It is not defined by external appearance or external actions. It is much more subtle. I believe this is one reason why Osho said he identified most with Lao Tzu. Lao Tzu was so unassuming a person, with such a mundane and commonplace appearance, that 99.99% of humanity would miss his spark, his true beauty. Only someone equally special could spot his treasure — communion can only be among equals; everything else is dialogue. Sannyas is equally intangible. Only if you are very observant, very aware, and willing to go beyond external appearances can you identify a true sannyasin. And once you have this ability, you can also be one. But you must be willing to let go of your beliefs and conditioning in order to grow anew. Sannyas is not for the complacent or weak of heart. It is as much a destructive act as it is a constructive one, and it is always an irreversible process.]


Life itself is rooted in freedom. We are not machines, we are not preprogramed. We are utter freedom — now it is up to us what to make of it. All the alternatives are open, we can choose any alternative, that is our choice.

[“Life is Freedom.” Truer words never were spoken. Life is full of alternatives. But we must remember that, in the ultimate, all choices are equally valuable — and hence — equally worthless. So,…]

Play the game as beautifully as you can; but it is a game— don’t get serious about it. And even if sometimes seriousness is needed, let it be a game, nothing more. Sometimes it is needed. It gives a taste to life. Sometimes you need to be serious also. Be serious, but never become serious, let that also be a game. Let everything be a game.

We go on missing the point and we go on thinking of something else which was not the case; this is how the foolish mind functions. Enjoy the moment, and whatsoever the moment makes available to you, be enriched by.


Religion arises in wonder and awe. If you can feel wonder, if you can feel awe, you are religious. Not by reading the Bible or the Gita or the Koran, but by experiencing awe. When you see the sky full of stars, do you feel a dance in your heart? Do you see a song arising in your being? Do you feel a communion with the stars? Then you are religious. You are not religious by going to the church or by going to the temple and repeating borrowed prayers which have nothing to do with your heart, which are just head affairs. Religion is a love affair—a love affair with existence.

My effort is to create reverence in you. If reverence arises in your heart, God is: suddenly you start feeling his presence everywhere, all around, within and without. In the moment of reverence the whole existence is transformed into godliness.

[Beautiful. Such deep meaning in these words. Existence is the only temple, the only church and the only mosque that we need. Reverence is the only prayer we need to know. And the root of reverence is awareness.]

It was one of the most unfortunate accidents in human history that religion became associated with seriousness. That association has to be destroyed, mercilessly destroyed. Religion has to be freed from the imprisonment of seriousness. Only then will it be healthy, only then will it be able to sing and dance and rejoice.

Flux and Awareness

Balance is not something static; it is a dynamic process. Hence you cannot decide your character once and for all. And those who decide their character once and for all are dead people. They simply go on following a dead routine; they are not transformed by this dead routine.

[“Life is Balance.” If I was asked to condense all of Osho’s teachings to one sentence, this would be it. From this seminal statement of duality flows all awareness. Life is constantly changing. One who is aware of this fact automatically lets go of all conditioning imposed by others. Because, in a continually changing existence, what value does a static system of beliefs have? And once you become aware of — and accept — this facet of existence, life is never the same again. It’s like those optical illusions we see in books. At first, you see either the cup or the two kissing faces. But from the instant you’ve made out both, the picture is totally different from what it was before. There is no way you can not see both the images.]

To be responsible means to be alert, conscious. To be responsible means to be mindful. Act with as much awareness as you can find possible. Even small things— walking on the street, eating your food, taking your bath— should not be done mechanically. Do them with full awareness.


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