That is this ancient music? Osho says it is the soundless sound, the sound of existence itself and it is surrounding us all the time but we just cannot hear it. He tells us that listening is all that meditation is about - how to listen to that which is already there.
With the help of five really great Zen stories and questions from disciples, Osho goes into careful detail on what meditation is. He helps us examine the mechanism of our mind and how to understand it, because without this understanding we may go on doing things which help the mind to function in its old patterns. And to hear the ancient music, mind has to be put aside.
The first chapter gives an in-depth explanation of the differences in the right and left hemispheres of our brains. This is illustrated with the Zen story of a master thief whose mastership comes from his ability to act through the hemisphere of his right-brain, his intuition.
A chapter on life, death and love gives us the key to living and loving, how to accept the certainty of death, and there is some lovely help with relaxation as Osho talks about the simplicity of enlightenment.
I was working on the production of this book and many times I would look at a page and there would be something absolutely relevant to what was happening that day, as for instance in the chapter where Osho is talking on how we make problems for ourselves. One sentence that struck me like a Zen gong was, "The ego is not an entity - not a thing - it is just a tension." Aah what a sigh of relief I gave when that sank in. all these years I have been looking for my ego in order to drop it, and I only need to relax it is so simple.
For many days I was fascinated by the sight of a Japanese swami who sat drawing in the garden. This was Swami Prem Vasant and he agreed to create drawings of plants and trees to use in this book. Each drawing is done in such detail and looks so lifelike that you will sometimes think it might be a photograph.
Osho describes creativity as the main quality that makes Zen superior to any other way of life. He talks about how the artist sees each leaf of a tree as different, unique, individual, and how for the poet each word has its own subtle music.
Osho takes us into the world of Zen where we are encouraged, or rather inspired, to grow towards more sensitivity, to be more alive, more silent, so that we may hear it - that music - it is here. Shhh!.
Back of the Book
I can see clouds a thousand miles away, hear ancient music in the pines. You can also hear it. It is your birthright. If you miss it, only you and only you will be responsible for it. Listen in the pines just listen. In this very moment it is there. Someone asked Buddha, "What is the greatest miracle?" He said, "Paravritti, turning in." Turn in, tune in, and you will be able to see clouds a thousand miles away, and you will be able to hear the ancient music in the pines. Meditation is a state of clarity, not a state of mind. Mind is confusion. Mind is never clear - it cannot be. Thoughts create clouds around you, they are subtle clouds. A mist is created by them and the clarity is lost. When thoughts disappear, when there are no more clouds around you, when you are in your simple beingness, clarity happens. Then you can see far away then, you can see to the very end of existence. Then your gaze becomes penetrating, to the very core of being.
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