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Beloved Master, I am more afraid of living than of dying. Is it possible?*


Yogananda, it must be possible if it is happening to you! Do you think you are managing the impossible? In fact, it is a very common phenomenon, nothing extraordinary about it – very normal. Nobody is more afraid of dying than of living. The fear of death is nothing compared to the fear of life.


That's why thousands of people around the earth commit suicide, and many more think many times in their lives of committing suicide. Many try but are prevented; many try but try halfheartedly. But very few people try to live. The number of people who try to live life is much less than those who try to commit suicide or actually commit suicide.

The man who lives life becomes a buddha. How many buddhas do you have? They can be counted on your fingers. Only once in a while is there a man like Jesus, Zarathustra, Lao Tzu. Centuries pass; millions of people come and go, then only is there a man who really lives, authentically lives, lives to the utmost, lives fearlessly. Then what are the others doing? Their life is not life; on the contrary, it is a constant avoidance of life. They are simply protecting themselves from life. They are hiding in their black holes in the name of security, safety, comfort. They are simply trying to evade life.

You can watch yourself – have you lived? You can watch others around you – are they really living? People only become aware that they were alive when they die. When death knocks on your door, suddenly you become aware: "My God, I was alive! And now death has come." But when death comes, millions of people feel relieved – relieved of the burden, of the anxiety, of the constant fear of life.

Death has no fear in it. When you are no more, what fear can there be? Death cannot hurt you – life can hurt you. Life hurts because one needs to be very intelligent, alert, to live. If you live unconsciously, life is bound to be a painful experience, an agony. Life can be ecstatic too, but only when you are alert, aware. Life is an opportunity, but it demands; it is a challenge, it is an adventure, a moment-to-moment adventure into the uncharted.

You cannot be imitators if you really want to live. You cannot be Christians and Hindus and Mohammedans. If you really want to live you have to be yourself – simply yourself. You cannot be anybody else; that is a way of avoiding true life. God never repeats. He creates each and every individual unique, absolutely unique. You are not manufactured like cars on an assembly line. Hence Jesus will never be again, Krishna will never be again, howsoever beautiful they were. God does not believe in carbon copies; he always creates individuals (video originals). He is a creator and no creator would like to repeat.

But that's what you have been told to do, and you are doing it. Somebody is trying to be like Krishna or like Confucius or like Mohammed; these have become your ideals. Then you go on missing that which you are – and that is the only way you can be. You become pseudo. Yes, to be pseudo seems to be a little more comfortable than to be original, because you can adjust to a pseudo society more easily, more comfortably. When everybody is false like you, you can easily become part of the crowd. When you are true and authentic, living your life on your own, in your own light, with no blueprints given by others to you – by the parents, by the priests, by the politicians – when you are moving every day into the unknown with no idea of what is going to happen, with great creativity, sensitivity, awareness, but with no fixed ideology; when you are exploring newer pastures, new peaks of being, then certainly you are no more a part of the crowd. <…>

Love life. That's why to me life is the only religion, the only god. Live life in its totality. And the beauty is that if you live life in its totality there is no death. The body is bound to die one day, but you are not the body. If you have lived your life totally, if you have loved your life totally, you will have come across the eternal in you. That is the meeting with God. That is the encounter with truth that transcends time. And to know it is to know bliss; to know it is to know all that is worth knowing.


*Osho, The Dhammapada: The Way of the Buddha, Volume 11. Discourse 2


Updated on 15-10-2018

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