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From Medication to Meditation. Pain*

The religious attitude is to look, not for the symptom but for the source. That's what I call "the psychology of the buddhas." If you have a headache, that is not your illness, that is not your disease. In fact, that is a signal from your body that something is going wrong in the source – run to the source! Find out what is going wrong. The head is simply giving you a signal, a danger signal, an alarm: "Listen to the body. Something is going wrong, you are doing something which is not right, which is destroying the harmony of the body. Don't do it anymore; otherwise the headache will go on reminding you."

The headache is not the disease, and the headache is not your enemy – it is your friend. It is in your service. It is very, very essential for your existence that the body should make you alert when something goes wrong. Rather than changing that wrong, you simply put the alarm off – you take an Aspro. This is absurd. This is what is happening in medicine and this is what is happening in psychotherapies – symptomatic treatment.

That's why the essential is missing. The essential is: look into the source. Next time you have a headache try a small meditation technique, just experimentally, then you can go on to bigger diseases and bigger symptoms.

When you have a headache just try a small experiment. Sit silently and watch it, look into it – not as if you are looking at an enemy, no. If you are looking at it as your enemy, you will not be able to look rightly. You will avoid – nobody looks at the enemy directly; one avoids, one tends to avoid. Look at it as your friend. It is your friend, it is in your service. It is saying, "Something is wrong – look into it." Just sit silently and look into the headache with no idea of stopping it, with no desire that it should disappear, no conflict, no fight, no antagonism. Just look into it, into what it is.

Watch, so if there is some inner message the headache can give it to you. It has a coded message. And if you look silently you will be surprised. If you look silently three things will happen. First: the more you look into it, the more severe it will become. And then you will be a little puzzled: "How is it going to help if it is becoming more severe?" It is becoming more severe because you have been avoiding it. It was there but you were avoiding it; you were already repressing – even without the aspirin you were repressing it. When you look into it, repression disappears. The headache will come to its natural severity. Then you are hearing it with unplugged ears, no wool around your ears; it will be very severe.

First thing: it will become severe. If it is becoming severe, you can be satisfied that you are looking rightly. If it does not become severe, then you are not looking yet; you are still avoiding. Look into it – it becomes severe. That is the first indication that yes, it is in your vision.

The second thing will be that it will become more pin-pointed; it will not be spread over a bigger space. First you were thinking, "It is my whole head aching." Now you will see it is not the whole head, it is just a small spot. That is also an indication that now you are gazing more deeply into it. The spread feeling of the ache is a trick – that is a way to avoid it. If it is in one point then it will be more severe. So you create an illusion that it is the whole head which is aching, spread all over the head, then it is not so intense at any point. These are tricks that we go on playing.

Look into it, and the second step will be that it comes to be smaller and smaller and smaller. And a moment comes when it is just the very point of a needle – very sharp, immensely sharp, very painful. You have never seen such pain in the head – but very much confined to a small spot. Go on looking into it.

And then the third and most important thing happens. If you go on looking at this point when it is very severe and confined and concentrated at one point, you will see many times that it disappears. When your gaze is perfect it will disappear. And when it disappears you will have the glimpse of where it is coming from – what the cause is. It will happen many times. Again it will be there. Your gaze is no longer that alert, that concentrated, that attentive – it will come back. Whenever your gaze is reallythere, it will disappear; and when it disappears, hidden behind it is the cause. And you will be surprised: your mind is ready to reveal what the cause is.

A thousand and one causes there can be. There are different causes. The same alarm is given because the alarm system is simple. There are not many alarm systems in your body. For different causes the same alarm is given. You may have been angry lately and you have not expressed it. Suddenly, like a revelation, it will be standing there. You will see all your anger that you have been carrying, carrying ... like pus inside you. Now this is too much, and that anger wants to be released. It needs a catharsis. Cathart! – and immediately you will see the headache has disappeared. And there was no need for the aspirin, no need for any treatment. ( See Osho dynamic meditation ).

And when the anger has disappeared, a totally different quality of well-being will arise in you that can never arise out of the aspirin. Aspirin represses – anger remains hidden inside you, violence goes on raging inside you. You only keep the alarm shut, that's all. Nothing changes, only the alarm is no longer there.

This goes on and on, and it becomes more and more accumulated. It may give you ulcers, it may give you tuberculosis – one day it can give you cancer. When a great quantity gathers, there are qualitative changes. There is a certain limit for the body to tolerate anything, beyond that limit it starts feeling ill. So is the case with mind. And never think of body and mind as two separate things; they are not. Man is body-mind, psychosomatic.

* excerpt from OSHO. From Medication to Meditation


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