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Beloved Master, To be a disciple has always meant to me to follow you, to be under your guidance, as if not to have a self of my own. I was never aware of the fact that being a disciple is to be as you are, and to allow your presence, your eyes, and your actions to put light on my being present, on my actions, on my ability to see clearly what is happening inside. Is there another word to describe this relationship with you? Disciple doesn't seem appropriate. Anand Asimo, In the first place, your idea of being a disciple is not right. You say, "To be a disciple has always meant to me to follow you." I have been saying almost every day not to follow me; FOLLOW YOUR OWN CONSCIOUSNESS! And the word 'disciple' comes from the same root as discipline; its basic meaning is learning. Follow your consciousness, FOLLOW YOUR OWN LIGHT. And if you can learn anything from me, don't believe it -- experiment with it. IF IT PROVES RIGHT TO YOU, IT IS YOURS, NOT MINE. Your idea of a disciple is not right: "To be under your guidance, as if not to have a self of my own..." Do you hear me or not? I'm saying that YOU SHOULD HAVE YOUR OWN SELF, YOUR OWN INDIVIDUALITY; that you are not expected here to surrender yourself or your individuality and become a slave, a spiritual slave. All the religions have been doing that for centuries: making millions of people spiritual slaves -- which is the greatest slavery. My insistence has been that, at the most, YOU ARE MY FELLOW TRAVELERS; we are on the same journey. MAYBE I AM A STEP AHEAD OF YOU, and my experience can help you to take that one step. But there is no insistence that you have to take that step -- because it may not be suitable to you, to your individuality. IN THE LIGHT OF MY EXPERIENCE, YOU HAVE TO FIND YOUR OWN WAY. My experience can only give you hints. My fingers can point to the moon, but my fingers are not the moon. You don't have to become my finger, nor do you have to worship my finger. You have to forget my finger, and look at where it is pointing. Because of your wrong conception, the second part of your question arises: "I was never aware of the fact that being a disciple is to be as you are." No, that is not right either. You are not to be as I am, or as Jesus Christ is, or as Gautam Buddha is. YOU HAVE TO BE YOURSELF. EXISTENCE NEVER REPEATS. That's why, in twenty-five centuries, there has not been another Gautam Buddha, and there never will be again. Existence is so creative, so innovative that it need not repeat an old model.... EXISTENCE IS ALWAYS ORIGINAL AND ALWAYS AUTHENTIC. It never creates two persons exactly the same. YOU DON'T HAVE TO BE LIKE ME OR LIKE ANYBODY ELSE. That is not disciplehood, that is becoming a carbon copy. And to be a carbon copy is one of the ugliest things in the world. But all the religions have been doing that -- creating carbon copies, calling them great saints. And they are simply fake, actors, they are simply acting. How can you have the heart of Jesus? How can you have the perceptivity of Jesus? How can you have the courage...? You can pretend. You can have hairs like Jesus, you can have the beard, you can carry a cross. You can even start believing that you are Jesus Christ.... YOU ARE FILLED WITH WRONG IDEAS. But those wrong ideas are very prevalent down the centuries. "... And to allow your presence, your eyes and your actions to put light on my being present, on my actions, on my ability to see clearly, what is happening inside..." That is all imitation, that is all destructive. That's how man has been destroyed, that is how the whole humanity has been enslaved. YOU ARE JUST TO BE A FRIEND TO ME, neither a believer, nor a follower, nor an imitator -- just a friend. You have to LISTEN TO ME AND EXPERIMENT. I may be right, I may be wrong. It is your experiment which is going to decide. It is only your experimentation with yourself that will bring authentic growth, consciousness, enlightenment. There is no other way. There has never been. And now you are asking: "Is there another word to describe this relationship with you?" What relationship? I HAVE BEEN AGAINST ALL RELATIONSHIPS -- just friendliness, not even friendship. That word 'friendship' gives a distant echo of some relationship. Just friendliness, that's enough; there is no need for more. Now you need a new name to describe this relationship? I DON'T HAVE ANY RELATIONSHIP WITH ANYBODY. YOU ARE HERE OUT OF FREEDOM, OUT OF LOVE, OUT OF FRIENDLINESS. Why drag into it the dirty word, 'relationship'? And to you, 'disciple' does not seem appropriate, because of that relationship. You want to hang around my neck a little more closely. Just have mercy on me. IT IS GOING PERFECTLY WELL: YOU ARE YOURSELF, I AM MYSELF; you love to listen to me, I love to talk to you -- that's all. Mick was walking down a street in Dublin, when suddenly two men pulled him into an alley. Mick put up a terrific fight, but the thugs succeeded in getting him pinned down and robbed him. When they found only thirty pence, one of the men said angrily, "You mean to say, you put up that fierce fight for a measly thirty pence? If you had sixty pence perhaps you would have killed both of us." Mick replied, "Ah, no. I thought you were after the five hundred pounds I have hidden in my shoe."

You have been hiding your whole ideology too long. You must have thought that you are bringing a great gift in your question, but I don't accept any relationship; I have accepted the word 'disciple', because it simply means a learner -- it is not a relationship. ALL RELATIONSHIPS ARE BINDING, THEY CREATE TROUBLE. You start expecting something, and the person who has allowed you to be related starts expecting something from you -- and the trouble begins. And the door to hell is not far away. HERE, NO RELATIONSHIP EXISTS AT ALL. Everybody is himself. And my whole philosophy is to give you dignity, selfhood, the glory of being yourself. I am not here to make you a Christian, or a Hindu or a Buddhist. MY WHOLE EFFORT AND LOVE IS TO MAKE YOU JUST YOURSELF. It is easy to copy; it is difficult to be original. But unless you are original, your life will not have any juice. OSHO The Rebel Ch #2: Beyond the capacity of the mind pm in Chuang Tzu Auditorium