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Beloved Master, What Is Mechanical Goodness?*

Gina Goyt, there is nothing like mechanical goodness. Goodness cannot be mechanical and anything mechanical cannot be good. It is a contradiction in terms. Goodness can only be conscious, nonmechanical; and evil can only be unconscious, mechanical.

But I understand your question. It is relevant, because for centuries something like mechanical goodness has been taught to people because it is easy. People ARE mechanical. To bring real goodness in their lives, real virtue, you will have to transform their unconsciousness into consciousness, you will have to change their darkness into light. That is an arduous effort, and the society, moreover, is not interested in it at all. In fact, it is afraid of it because whenever a REALLY good person has happened in the world he has created trouble for the society.


A Jesus, a Lao Tzu, a Buddha, a Kabir, these are the greatest rebels for the simple reason that they were so conscious that they could see through the whole stupid game that we go on playing. They could see through our lies, they could see through our deceptions. It was impossible to deceive them and it was impossible to exploit them and it was impossible to enslave them. Not only was it impossible to enslave them, but they created great movements of consciousness in the world. They created chains, they triggered chains. Many many people became enlightened through their efforts. Their efforts were thought to be antisocial. That's why Jesus was crucified.

Where can you find a man who is more good than Jesus? What was his crime? His crime was that he was REALLY good. If he had been only mechanically good there would have been no trouble. There were many rabbis who were mechanically good. The society is not afraid of mechanical people; they are manageable. They are dependent on the society. They always live with the collective, they are always following the crowd. The crowd is very happy with these people. And it is easy to create mechanical goodness because, in the first place, people ARE mechanical. You have just to replace their evil ideas with good ideas, not changing at all their beings.

For example, hell was created - the idea of hell - to create mechanical goodness. People are afraid, people live in fear; priests became aware of it in the very beginning of humanity, that it can be exploited: make them more afraid. They depicted hell in such detail, they created so much fear in people, that people became conditioned - out of fear.

It is the same type of conditioning that can be done now in easier ways because we have more developed technology. There is no need to teach for twenty-five years the idea of hell; then a person becomes mechanically good. Now you can ask Pavlov, Skinner and other behaviorists: they will teach you some methods. Just electric shocks will do.

Somebody smokes and you don't want him to smoke - just give him electric shocks. Whenever he smokes let him have an electric shock. Within three days he will drop smoking because the moment he takes a cigarette in his hand he will start trembling. He will become so much afraid that now the shock is coming. That's how they teach rats, they teach monkeys and chimpanzees. And that's how they are trying to teach human beings.

Religious people created hell, politicians created prisons - just to torture people. If you torture them enough, people become accustomed. Pavlov calls it "conditioned reflex." He worked his whole life with dogs; he conditioned his dogs.

If you bring food before a dog, of course, it affects his saliva. He starts salivating, his tongue starts hanging out, saliva starts dripping. Seeing delicious food, it is natural. But if you ring a bell it won't happen. There is no connection between a bell and saliva glands, but Pavlov did one thing: whenever he would give food to his dogs he would ring a bell. Whenever he would ring a bell he would give food to the dogs. The bell and the food became associated, linked, hooked with each other. After fifteen days he just rang the bell and the dogs started salivating and their tongues hanging out. Now, there is no natural connection between the bell and the tongue, but a new, unnatural connection has been created.

Pavlov became the founder of communist psychology. That's how in Soviet Russia, in China and other communist countries, people are being conditioned. They don't think that man is any different from dogs; maybe a little more developed, a little more complicated, but still a dog. Skinner goes on working on rats and goes on finding how to condition rats, and he says the same is applicable to human beings. You just create fear and then they will not do certain things; and you create greed... And that's why paradise, heaven were created. These are simple strategies for dominating people. Create fear for that which you want people not to do and create the idea of reward for that which you want them to do - and you have created a mechanical behavior. They will not do the bad and they will do the good.

But what kind of good is this? It is exploitation by the society, by the church, by the state -- by the vested interests. It has not changed the BEING of the man. It has not made him more aware, alert, more joyous, more celebrating. It has not given him any taste of bliss. It has not opened any window for him from where he can have a little glimpse of God. I don't call it goodness, virtue. My idea of virtue is that it should be a by-product of consciousness. You should become so conscious that you CAN'T do wrong - not because you are conditioned but because you can see it is wrong.


*excerpt from OSHO The way of the Budhha vol.10 #12 Question 2

Updated on 17-06-2019

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