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Compassion and Transformation

Atisha´s  Meditation

From The Book of Wisdom by OSHO


  “May all sentient beings enjoy happiness and may they cause the root of happiness.
May they be free from suffering and may they not cause the root of suffering.
May they not be separated from the great happiness devoid of suffering.
May they obtain all-embracing, unconditional compassion, and may they dwell in the great equanimity free from passion, aggression, and ignorance.”



Start being compassionate. And the method is, when you breathe in - listen carefully, it is one of the greatest methods - when you breathe in, think that you are breathing in all the miseries of all the people in the world. All the darkness, all the negativity, all the hell that exists anywhere, you are breathing it in.. And let it be absorbed into your heart. When you breathe in, breathe in all the misery and suffering of all the beings of the world - past, present and future. And when you breathe out, breathe out all the joy you have, all the blissfulness that you have, all the benediction that you have. Breathe out, pour yourself into existence. This is the method of compassion: drink in all the suffering and pour out all the blessings.

And you will be surprised if you do it. The moment you take all the sufferings of the world inside you, they are no longer sufferings. The heart immediately transforms the energy. The heart is a transforming force: drink in misery, and it is transformed into blissfulness... then pour it out.

Once you have learned that your heart can do this magic, this miracle, you would like to do it again and again. Try it. It is one of the most practical methods - simple, and it brings immediate results. Do it today, and see.


There are three objects which can either function as three poisons or can become three bases of infinite virtue.He is talking of the inner alchemy. The poison can be transformed into nectar, the baser metal can be transformed into gold.

What are these three objects? The first is aversion, the second is attachment, and the third is indifference. This is how the mind functions. You feel aversion to whatsoever you dislike, you feel attachment to whatever you like, and you feel indifferent to things which you neither dislike nor like.

Just watch your mind, this is how your mind functions. It is always saying "I like this, I don't like that, and I am indifferent to the third." These are the three ways the mind goes on moving. This is the rut, the routine.

He says: These are the three poisons, but they can become the three bases of virtue. How can they become the three bases of great virtue? - if you bring in the quality of compassion...If you learn the art of absorbing suffering, as if all the suffering of the world is coming riding on the breath, then how can you be repulsed? How can you dislike anything and how can you be indifferent to anything? If you are unconditionally taking in all the suffering of the world, drinking it, absorbing it into your heart, and then instead of it pouring blessings on the whole of existence - UNCONDITIONALLY; not to someone in particular, remember; not only to man but to all; to all beings, trees and rocks and birds and animals, to the whole existence - material, immaterial - when you are pouring out blessings unconditionally, how can you be attached?

Attachment, aversion, indifference; all disappear with this small technique. And with their disappearance the poison is transformed into nectar, and the bondage becomes freedom, and the hell is no more a hell, it is heaven.



You cannot do anything with others that you have not done in the first place with yourself. you can hurt others if you have hurt yourself, you will be a pain in the neck to others if you are a pain in the neck to yourself, you can be a blessing to others only if you are a blessing to yourself.

Rather than starting by taking the whole misery of the world and absorbing it into your heart, start with your own misery. Don't go into the deep sea so fast; learn swimming in shallow water... You can say to yourself "Yes, I am taking the misery of the whole world" - but what do you know of the misery of the whole world? You have not experienced even your own misery.

We go on avoiding our own misery. If you feel miserable, you put on the radio or the TV and you become engaged. You start reading the newspaper so that you can forget your misery, or you go to the movies, or you go to your woman or your man...just somehow to keep yourself away from yourself, so that you need not look at how much it hurts within.

First, you have to begin with yourself. If you are feeling miserable, let it become a meditation. Sit silently, close the doors. First feel the misery with as much intensity as possible. Feel the hurt. Somebody has insulted you: now, the best way to avoid the hurt is to go and insult him, so that you become occupied with him. This is not meditation.

If somebody has insulted you, feel thankful to him that he has given you the opportunity to feel a deep wound...Just close the room, sit silently, with no anger for the person but with total awareness of the feeling that is arising in you - the hurt feeling that you have been rejected, that you have been insulted. And then you will be surprised that not only is this man there: all the people who have ever insulted you will start moving in your memory... Stop all occupation, because that too is a subtle drug. Just be silent, utterly alone. Don't even pray, because that again is a drug, you are becoming occupied, you start talking to God, you start praying, you escape from yourself.

Atisha is saying: just be yourself. Whatsoever the pain of it and whatsoever the suffering of it, just let it be so. First experience it in its total intensity. It will be difficult, it will be heart-rending: you may start crying like a child, you may start rolling on the ground in deep pain, your body may go through contortions. You may suddenly become aware that the pain is not only in the heart, it is all over the body - that it is aching all over, that it is painful all over, that the body is nothing but pain.

If you can experience it - this is of tremendous importance - then start absorbing it...Absorb it, drink it, accept it, welcome it, feel grateful to it. It may take a few days for you to be able to digest it, but the day it happens, you have stumbled upon a door which will take you really far away. A new journey has started in your life, you are moving into a new kind of being - because immediately, the moment you accept the pain with no rejection anywhere, its energy and its quality changes. It is no longer pain.

In fact one is simply surprised, one cannot believe it, it is so incredible. One cannot believe that suffering can be transformed into ecstasy, that pain can become joy.

Whenever anything is total it transforms into its opposite. This is a great secret to be remembered...You will not believe it when it happens the first time, that your own suffering absorbed willingly, welcomingly, becomes a great blessing. The same energy that becomes hate becomes love, the same energy that becomes pain becomes pleasure, the same energy that becomes suffering becomes bliss.

Ride on the incoming breath and your small heart is bigger than the whole universe, if you know what miracles it can do... Then let blessings go riding on the outgoing breath to all the nooks and corners of existence.

Atisha says: This is compassion. Compassion is to become a transforming force in existence - transforming the ugly into the beautiful, kissing the frog and transforming it into a prince, transforming darkness into light. To become such a medium of transformation is compassion.



Atisha is not an escapist. He does not teach escapism, he does not teach you to escape from situations which are not to your liking. He says: you have to learn to function in , in Buddha-consciousness, in all kinds of situations - in the marketplace, in the monastery; with people or alone in a cave; with friends or with enemies; with family, familiar people, and with strangers; with men and with animals. In all kinds of situations, you have to learn to function in compassion, in meditation - because all these experiences of different situations will make your more and more ripe.

Don't escape from any situation - if you escape, then something will remain missing in you. Then your will not be that ripe, will not be that rich. Live life in its multi-dimensionality.

Religion is a science in the sense that it is the purest knowing. ...It is the greatest adventure there is. It is a call and a challenge to all those who have any courage, any guts, any intelligence.


What are the three general points? The first is: regularity of meditativeness. Remember, it is very difficult to create meditation, it is very easy to lose it. Anything higher takes much arduous effort to create, but it can disappear within a moment. To lose contact with it is very easy.

That is one of the qualities of the higher. It is like growing a rose flower: just a little hard wind and the rose has withered and the petals have fallen, or some animal has entered the garden and the rose is eaten. And whenever there is a conflict between the higher and the lower, always remember, the lower wins easily. If you clash a rose flower with a rock, the rose flower is going to die, not the rock.

Your whole past is full of rocks, and when you start growing a rose of awareness in you, there are a thousand and one possibilities of it being destroyed by your old rocks - habits, mechanical habits. You will have to be very watchful and careful. You will have to walk like a woman who is pregnant... It has to be as regular as sleep, as food, as exercise, as breathing.

The second general point is: don't waste your time with the non-essential. Don't fool around... The man who wants to be a Buddha has to drop the non-essential more and more, so that more energy is available for the essential. Take a look at your life, how many non-essential things you are doing - and for what? And how long have you done them, and what have you gained? Are you going to repeat the same stupid pattern the whole of your life? Enough is enough!.. All that is great comes only when you have extra energy. If your whole life is wasted on the mundane, then the sacred will never be contacted.

And the third general point is: Don't rationalize your errors and mistakes. The mind tends to rationalize. If you commit some mistake, the mind says "It had to be so, there were reasons for it. I am not responsible, the very situation made this happen." And the mind is very clever at rationalizing everything.

Avoid rationalizing your own errors and mistakes, because if you rationalize you protect them. Then they will be repeated... Reasoning is one thing, rationalization is totally another... And you will be able to find that when you are rationalizing, you can deceive others but you cannot deceive yourself. You KNOW that you have fallen: rather than wasting time in rationalizing and convincing yourself that nothing is wrong, put the whole energy into being aware.


The ego is result-oriented, the mind always hankers after results. The mind is never interested in the act itself, its interest is in the result. "What am I going to gain out of it?" If the mind can manage to gain, without going through any action, then it will choose the shortcut.

That's why educated people become very cunning, because they are able to find shortcuts. The educated person becomes cunning. He does not become wise, he simply becomes clever...

The mind, the ego, are all result-oriented. The being in not result-oriented. And how can the non-being ever be result-oriented? It is not there at all in the first place.

Meditation happens only to those who are not result-oriented.. And then there is no need to go anywhere. God will come to you. Deep down, say "I give up." And silence descends, benediction showers.

Meditate over these sutras, they are meant only for meditators. is not a philosopher, he is a , a Buddha. What he is saying is not some speculation. These are clear-cut instructions given only to those who are ready to travel, to go on the pilgrimage into the unknown.


Be just, be fair, don't decide through or prejudices, your likes and dislikes. Just decide the case on its merit, and your will the beauty of trust, your life will have the strength of truth.


He says: criticize people's minds, criticize their ideologies, criticize their systems of thought, criticize everything - but never criticize anybody's love, never criticize anybody's trust. Why? Because love is so valuable, trust is so immensely valuable. To destroy it, to criticize it, is the greatest harm one can do to anybody.
Logic is blind: criticize it! Love has eyes: ONLY love has eyes, because only love can see God. Criticize beliefs, because beliefs are nothing but doubts hidden behind beautiful words. Criticize beliefs, but don't criticize anybody's trust.

So whenever you see somebody in love, somebody in trust, avoid the temptation to criticize. It is easy to criticize, it is easy to throw poison at somebody's love affair. But you don't know that you have been destructive, you don't know that you have destroyed something of immense beauty. You have thrown a rock on a rose flower.


The ego is called the "celestial demon." Remember constantly, each moment of your life has to become a constant remembrance, that the ego is very subtle and it has very cunning ways to come back again and again. It follows you to the very last, it hopes that you will be trapped. Beware of it.

This ego is called in Christian, Mohammedan and Judaic scriptures "the devil." It is your own mind, the very center of your own mind.

In the beginning, just try for a few moments to live without any "I."... Taking a shower, just let the water fall on you, but don't be there as an "I." Relax, forget the "I", and you will be surprised: the shower is not only cooling your body, it cools your innermost core too.

And if you search, you will find so many moments in ordinary life when the ego can be put aside. And the joy is so great that once you have tasted it you can do it again and again. And slowly slowly, you become capable of putting it off until it is absolutely necessary.

And then that day of blessing also comes when you know that it is not necessary at all. You say the final good-bye to it. The day when your ego dies, you have reached the point of no-self. That is your real being.

Non-being is your real being. Not to be is to be for the first time.


All views are wrong. Life should be lived without views, life should be lived in immediate contact with reality. But if it is not possible, then at least don't have wrong views. What are wrong views? Views which are rooted in prejudice, hate, anger, greed, ambition, violence.

If you cannot do something beautiful in the world, at least don't do something ugly. The highest possibility is to live without any views, to just live, just be. The second best is to at least drop the negative part and follow the positive. And slowly, slowly, you will see that if you can drop the negative, the positive can also be dropped. In fact the negative is more difficult to drop than the positive.


Change your inclination from the mind to the heart. That is the first change. Think less, feel more. Intellectualize less, intuit more. Thinking is a very deceptive process, it makes you feel you are doing great things. But you are simply making castles in the air. Thoughts are nothing but castles in the air... Thinking about love is not going to help, but feeling love is bound to change you. Thinking is very much beloved by the ego, because the ego feeds on fictions... Change from the mind to the heart, from thinking to feeling, from logic to love.

And the second change is from the heart to the being - because there is a still deeper layer in you where even feelings cannot reach. Remember these three words - mind, heart, being. Remember these three words: mind, heart, being. The being is your true nature...Thinking is far away from being but feeling is a little closer; it reflects some of the glory of being. It is just as in the sunset the sun is reflected by the clouds and the clouds start having beautiful colors. They themselves are not the sun, but they are reflecting the light of the sun.
But one has to go beyond feelings too... Feeling is half, and no half can ever satisfy you. Thinking and feeling are both halves and you will remain divided. Being is total, and only the total can bring contentment.

And the fourth, the ultimate change, is from being to non-being... Light is, delight is, but there is nobody who is delighted. : neither this nor that, neither existence nor non-existence - this is the ultimate state. is slowly slowly taking his disciples towards it.


Because the opportunity is now, the opportunity is here... Don't say "Tomorrow I will meditate, tomorrow I will love, tomorrow I will have a dancing relationship with existence." Why tomorrow? Tomorrow never comes. Why not now? Why postpone? Postponement is a trick of the mind: it keeps you hoping, and meanwhile the opportunity is slipping by. And in the end you will come to the cul-de-sac - death - and there will be no more opportunity left.


And that's what you go on thinking. Ninety-nine percent of the things that you think about concern others. Drop them - drop them immediately!

Your life is short, and your life is slipping out of your fingers. Each moment you are less, each day you are less, and each day you are less alive and more dead! Each birthday is a death day: one more year is gone from your hands. Be a little more intelligent



Gurdjeff used to say to his disciples - the first thing, the very first thing: "Find out what your greatest characteristic is, your greatest undoing, your central characteristic of unconsciousness." Each one's is different. Somebody is sex-obsessed... somebody is obsessed with anger, and somebody else is obsessed with greed. You have to watch which is your basic obsession.

So first find the main characteristic upon which your whole ego rests. And then be constantly aware of it, because it can only exist if you are unaware. It is burnt in the fire of awareness automatically.

And remember, remember always, that you are not to cultivate the opposite of it... People move from one thing to the opposite. That is not the way of transformation. It is the same pendulum, moving from left to right, from right to left. And that's how your life has been moving for centuries, it is the same pendulum.

The pendulum has to be stopped in the middle. And that's the miracle of awareness. Just be aware that "This is my chief pitfall, this is the place where I stumble again and again, this is the root of my unconsciousness." Don't try to cultivate the opposite of it, but pour your whole awareness into it. Create a great bonfire of awareness, and it will be burned. And then the pendulum stops in the middle.

And with the stopping of the pendulum, time stops. You suddenly enter into the world of timelessness, deathlessness, eternity.


Look into it, look deep into it. shake yourself into as full awareness as possible. Wake up and see! and you will start laughing - because now you will see there has never been a birth, and there is never going to be a death.

This is unborn and undying consciousness. It has always been here. It is eternal, it is timeless. And how afraid you were of death, and how afraid you were of old age, and how afraid you were of a thousand and one things! And nothing has ever happened: all was a dream.

Seeing this, one smiles, one laughs. Your whole life up to now has been ridiculous, absurd. You were unnecessarily afraid, unnecessarily greedy, unnecessarily suffering. You were living in a nightmare and it was your own creation.


The first force is totality, intensity. If you really want to have a transformed life, if you really want to be a light unto yourself, if you really want to know the ultimate mystery of existence and the ultimate joy of being alive, then the first force is intensity, totality. Don't be lousy, don't be lazy, don't be partial.
If you dance, dance so totally that the dancer disappears and only the dance remains, and it will be a transformation. If you love, love so totally that there is no lover found. That which you are holding back becomes the lover. If you are holding back, that which you are holding back becomes the dancer, the singer. If you are totally in the dance, in the song, in the love, who is left behind to say "I am the lover, I am the dancer?" Nothing is left.

And totality transforms. It is only at one hundred degrees intensity that one evaporates from the material into the spiritual, from the earth to the sky, from the ordinary to the extraordinary.

The second force is familiarization: do and be what you really want to do and be. Life is lived according to gestalts that you have created around yourself. If you really want to be something else, then familiarize yourself with it. If you want to play the guitar, practice. If you want to dance, practice. If you want anything to happen in your life, imbibe more and more of it and drop all that is against it.

The third force is the force of white seeds. "White seeds" is a metaphor. means: drop all that is black. Don't go on cultivating the black seeds of anger, jealousy, hatred, possessiveness, domination. Even if they arise, watch, absorb them into your heart, and they will become white seeds. And what are the white seeds? Love, compassion, service, sincerity, sensitivity, awareness: these are the white seeds. If one day you want to have white flowers in your life, you will have to sow white seeds.

And the fourth force is reproach - to completely abjure ego-oriented thoughts. Watch - whatsoever arises out of the ego, whatsoever is an ego trip, immediately disconnect yourself from it. Even to linger with it for a while is dangerous, because lingering will give it energy. The moment you know it is an ego trip, immediately disconnect yourself... whenever pride arises, whenever the ego raises its head, you know it. Cut that head immediately with a single blow.

And the fifth force is the force of the dedication of all virtue to the welfare of others. Whatsoever good happens to you, immediately share it. This is one of the most fundamental things in Buddhism. If love has arisen, share it, shower it. If you cannot find people, shower it on the trees, the rocks, but shower it. Don't hoard it - because if you hoard it, it turns into poison; if you hoard it, it goes sour and bitter. Share it.... Give, and you will have it; give more, and you will have more of it.


The first meaning: there are two kinds of witnesses. One kind is the people that surround you. You are constantly aware that you are being watched, witnessed. With so many eyes watching you, you are reduced to an object... And you are afraid because they may not appreciate you. They may not feed your ego, they may not like you, they may reject you. Now you are in their hands.

The second kind of witnessing is totally different. It is not that you hanker for others' attention: on the contrary, you start paying attention to yourself. You become a witness to your own being. You start watching your thoughts, desires, dreams, motives, greeds and jealousies. You create a new kind of awareness within you. You become a center, a silent center which goes on watching whatsoever is happening. You are angry, and you watch it. You are not just angry, a new element is introduced into it: you are watching it. And the miracle is that if you can watch anger, the anger disappears without being repressed.

And the second is: witness the witness itself - and... the ultimate ecstasy is created. The first leads to the second. Start watching your thoughts but don't stop there... One more thing has to done, one more step: now watch the watcher... Nothing else is left, only you are. By watching the mind, the mind disappears. By watching the witness, the witness expands and becomes universal.


If you are unhappy, that simply means that you have learned tricks for being unhappy, and nothing else.

The world is absolutely neutral. It has thorns, it has roses, it has nights, it has days... Now it depends on you as to what to choose. If you have decided to choose only the wrong, you will live in a wrong kind of world, because you will live in your own chosen world. That's how people create hell and heaven on the same earth. It looks very unbelievable that Buddha lived on earth with the came kind of people, and lived in paradise. And you also live on the same earth with the same kind of people, and you live in hell.

Once you have learned this happy frame of mind, this positive vision of life, you will be surprised that the whole existence starts functioning in a totally different way. It starts mothering you. It starts helping you in every possible way, it becomes a great friend... And to know this is to know God...


What does he mean by 'if you can do it?' This is of great importance. If you can be attentive to your inattention, if you can be aware that you have fallen into the trap of the negative, it is still meditation, it is still mind training, you are still growing.

Yes, many times you will fall, it is natural. And many times you will forget, it is natural. And many times you will be trapped and it will take time for you to remember. But the moment you remember, remember TOTALLY. Wake up totally and say "I have fallen".

And see the difference: If you ask the ordinary religious person he will say "Repent- punish yourself." But is saying: if you are attentive, that's enough. Be attentive to your inattention, be aware that you have not been aware, that's all. No repentance is needed... To fall many times is not something to feel guilty about. To commit errors, to go astray, is part of our human frailty and limitations. So there is no need to repent.

Repentance is ugly. It is like playing with your wound, fingering your wound. It is unnecessary, and not only unnecessary but harmful - the wound may become septic, and fingering the wound is not going to help it heal either.

If you have fallen, just know that you have fallen, with no guilt, with no repentance. There is no need to go anywhere to confess it, just knowing it is enough. And knowing it, you are helping your awareness to grow. Less and less will you fall, because knowing will become more and more strong in you.


The body needs physical food: without it, it will start withering away. This is how it survives; it contains nothing but physical food.

Your mind contains memories, thoughts, desires, jealousies, power trips, and a thousand and one subtle things. All that is also food; on a little more subtle plane it is food. Thought is food. The mind is nothing but the inner side of the body; hence what you eat affects your mind. If you eat non-vegetarian food you will have one kind of mind; if you eat vegetarian food you will certainly have a different kind of mind.

And watch what you allow into your mind. People are completely unaware; they go on reading everything and anything, they go on looking at the TV, any silly stupid thing... Avoid situations where you unnecessarily burden yourselves with rubbish. You already have too much as it is. And you go on collecting as if it is something precious.

Leave a few gaps in your mind unoccupied. Those moments are the first glimpses of meditation, the first penetrations of the beyond, the first glimpses of no-mind. And then if you can manage to do this, the other thing is to choose physical food which does not help aggression and violence, which is not poisonous. Now even scientists agree on this, that when you kill an animal, out of fear he releases all kinds of poisons... And on the mental plane things are more complicated. If you think you are a Hindu, you are poisoned; if you think you are a Mohammedan, you are poisoned...You have been spoon-fed since the very first day; from your mother's breast, you have been poisoned. To think of oneself as German, as Chinese, is to think of oneself in opposition to humanity; is to think in terms of enmity, not friendship.

Think of yourself only as a human being. And when your intelligence grows a little more you will even drop the adjective "human." You will think of yourself only as a being. And the being includes all - the trees and the rivers and the stars and the birds and the animals. Become bigger, become huge. Why are you living in tunnels? Why are you creeping into small, dark holes?... No idea is great enough to contain a human being; being-hood cannot be contained in any concept. All concepts cripple and paralyze.

Don't be a Catholic and don't be a communist, just be a human being. These are all poisons, these are all prejudices. And down the ages you have been hypnotized by these prejudices. They have become part of your blood, your bones, your very marrow. You will have to be very alert to get rid of all this poisoning.

Let your physiological body be pure of all poisons and toxins, and let your mind be unburdened from all kinds of rubbish and junk. And let your soul be free from the idea of self. When the soul is free from the idea of "I", you have arrived at that inner space called no-self, ANATTA. You have come home. Now there is nowhere to go; now you can settle, rest and relax. now you can enjoy the millions of joys that are being showered upon you by existence.


People are always finding scapegoats. Because they cannot answer the strong person, they take revenge on the weak.

The husband has been humiliated by the boss and he comes home and is angry at the wife for no reason at all. Or maybe he finds a reason; a reason can always be found, they are so simple to find. He will find a reason, and he will convince himself that he is angry because of this reason. The reality is that he is angry at his boss. But the boss is a powerful man: to say anything could be dangerous, he might lose his job.

Atisha is saying: please don't shift things. Otherwise your whole life will be just shifting and shifting. Take the responsibility, take the risk. Respond to the situation, whatever the cost.


That point is the ego. The ego is false: if you live according to the false ego, your whole life will remain false. If you live without the ego your whole life will have the flavor of reality, truth and authenticity.

Think, meditate, practice.



This meditation is available on CD 1001