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Courage: The Joy of
Living Dangerously

by Osho

Excerpt From the Book :

The Courage of Love

 

This Cake is Delicious !

Love is very rare. To meet a person at his 

center is to pass through a revolution, because 

if you want to meet a person at his center you 

will have to allow that person to reach to your center also. You will have to become vulnerable, absolutely vulnerable, open.

It is risky. To allow somebody to reach your 

center is risky, dangerous, because you never know what that person will do to you. And once 

all your secrets are known, once your hidden-

ness has become unhidden, once you are exposed completely, what that other person will do, you never know. The fear is there. That’s why we never open.

Just acquaintance, and we think love has happened. Peripheries meet, and we think we have met. You are not your periphery. Really, the periphery is the boundary where you end, just the fencing around you. It is not you! The periphery is the place where you end and the world begins.

Even husbands and wives who might have lived together for many years, may be just acquaintances. They may not have known each other. And the more you live with someone the more you forget completely that the centers have remained unknown.

So the first thing to be understood is, don’t take acquaintance as love. You may be making love, you may be sexually related, but sex is also peripheral. Unless centers meet, sex is just a meeting of two bodies. And a meeting of two bodies is not your meeting. Sex also remains acquaintance – physical, bodily, but still just an acquaintance. You can allow somebody to enter to your center only when you are not afraid, when you are not fearful.

There are two types of living: one fear-oriented, one love-oriented. Fear-oriented living can never lead you into deep relationship. You remain afraid, and the other cannot be allowed, cannot be allowed to penetrate you to your very core. To an extent you allow the other and then the wall comes and everything stops.

The love-oriented person means one who is not afraid of the future, one who is not afraid of the result and the consequence, who lives here and now. Don’t be bothered about the result; that is the fear-oriented mind. Don’t think about what will happen out of it. Just be here, and act totally. Don’t calculate. A fear-oriented man is always calculating, planning, arranging, safeguarding. His whole life is lost in this way.

I have heard about an old Zen monk: He was on his deathbed. The last day had come, and he declared that on that evening he would be no more. So followers, disciples, friends started coming. He had many lovers, they all started coming; from far and wide people gathered. One of his old disciples, when he heard that the master was going to die, ran to the market. Somebody asked, "The Master is dying in his hut, why are you going to the market?" The old disciple said, "I know that my master loves a particular type of cake, so I am going to purchase the cake." It was difficult to find the cake, but by the evening somehow he managed. He came running with the cake.

And everybody was worried – it was as if the Master was waiting for someone. He would open his eyes and look, and close his eyes again. When this disciple came, he said, "Okay, so you have come. Where is the cake?" The disciple produced the cake – and he was very happy that the Master asked about it. Dying, the Master took the cake in his hand… but his hand was not trembling. He was very old, but his hand was not trembling. So somebody asked, "You are so old and just on the verge of dying. The last breath is soon to leave you, but your hand is not trembling."

The Master said, "I never tremble, because there is no fear. My body has become old but I am still young, and I will remain young even when the body is gone." Then he took a bite, started munching the cake. And then somebody asked, "What is your last message, Master? You will be leaving us soon. What do you want us to remember?" The Master smiled and said, "Ah, this cake is delicious." This is a man who lives in the here and now: This cake is delicious. Even death is irrelevant. The next moment is meaningless. This moment, this cake is delicious. If you can be in this moment, this present moment, this presentness, the plenitude, then only can you love.

Love is a rare flowering. It happens only sometimes. Millions and millions of people live in the false attitude that they are lovers. They believe that they love, but that is their belief only.

Love is a rare flowering. Sometimes it happens. It is rare because it can happen only when there is no fear, never before. That means love can happen only to a very deeply spiritual, religious person. Sex is possible for all. Acquaintance is possible for all. Not love.

When you are not afraid, then there is nothing to hide; then you can be open, then you can withdraw all boundaries. And then you can invite the other to penetrate you to the very core.

And remember, if you allow somebody to penetrate you deeply, the other will allow you to penetrate into himself or herself, because when you allow somebody to penetrate you, trust is created. When you are not afraid, the other becomes fearless.

In your love, fear is always there. The husband is afraid of the wife, the wife is afraid of the husband. Lovers are always afraid. Then it is not love. Then it is just an arrangement of two fearful persons depending on each other, fighting, exploiting, manipulating, controlling, dominating, possessing – but it is not love.


If you can allow love to happen, there is no need for prayer, there is no need for meditation, there is no need for any church, any temple. You can completely forget God if you can love – because through love, everything will have happened to you: meditation, prayer, God, everything will have happened to you. That’s what Jesus means when he says love is God.

But love is difficult. Fear has to be dropped. And this is the strange thing, that you are so afraid and you have nothing to lose.

The mystic Kabir has said somewhere, "I look into people… they are so much afraid, but I can’t see why – because they have nothing to lose." Says Kabir, "They are like a person who is naked, but never goes to take a bath in the river because he is afraid – where will he dry his clothes?" This is the situation you are in – naked, with no clothes, but always worried about the clothes.

What have you got to lose? Nothing. This body will be taken by death; before it is taken by death, give it to love. Whatsoever you have will be taken away; before it is taken away, why not share it? That is the only way of possessing it. If you can share and give, you are the master. It is going to be taken away – there is nothing which you can retain forever. Death will destroy everything.

So, if you follow me rightly, the struggle is between death and love. If you can give, there will be no death. Before anything can be taken away from you, you will have already given it, you will have made it a gift. There can be no death.

For a lover there is no death. For a non-lover, every moment is a death because every moment something is being snatched away from him. The body is disappearing, he is losing every moment. And then there will be death, and everything will be annihilated.

What is the fear? Why are you so afraid? Even if everything is known about you and you are an open book, why fear? How can it harm you? Just false conceptions, just conditionings given by the society – that you have to hide, that you have to protect yourself, that you have to be constantly in a fighting mood, that everybody is an enemy, that everybody is against you.

Nobody is against you! Even if you feel somebody is against you, he too is not against you – because everybody is concerned with himself, not with you. There is nothing to fear. This has to be realized before a real relationship can happen. There is nothing to fear.

Meditate on it. And then allow the other to enter you, invite the other to enter you. Don’t create any barrier anywhere; become a passage always open, no locks, no doors on you, no closed doors on you. Then love is possible.

When two centers meet, there is love. And love is an alchemical phenomenon – just like hydrogen and oxygen meet and a new thing, water, is created. You can have hydrogen, you can have oxygen, but if you are thirsty they will be useless. You can have as much oxygen as you want, as much hydrogen as you like, but the thirst will not go.

When two centers meet a new thing is created. That new thing is love. And it is just like water; the thirst of many, many lives is satisfied. Suddenly you become content. That is the visible sign of love; you become content, as if you have achieved everything. There is nothing to achieve now; you have reached the goal. There is no further goal, destiny is fulfilled. The seed has become a flower, has come to its total flowering.

Deep contentment is the visible sign of love. Whenever a person is in love, he is in deep contentment. Love cannot be seen but contentment, the deep satisfaction around him...his every breath, his every movement, his very being, content.

You may be surprised when I say to you that love makes you desireless, but desire comes with discontent. You desire because you don’t have. You desire because you think that if you have something it will give you contentment. Desire comes out of discontent.

When there is love and two centers have met and dissolved and merged, and a new alchemical quality is born, contentment is there. It is as if the whole existence has stopped – no movement. Then the present moment is the only moment. And then you can say, "Ah, this cake is delicious." Even death doesn’t mean anything to a man who is in love.

Reprinted by Permission of Osho International

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