To help yourself, help the other || Acharya Prashant (2015)

21762214_1227353527370622_921021697824714700_nQuestion: Acharya Ji, What does Osho mean when he says, “You help the other be alone so that you do not remain a need for the other”?

Acharya Prashant: This is with reference to a relationship. There is a relationship, a relationship apparently involves two. And if the two are lonely what are they doing in that relationship?

Just fulfilling their own self-interests. Because the lonely person has nothing but ‘himself’ in his world. The world exists for his sake so that he might be fulfilled. For the lonely person, who is paramount? “Himself, his needs.” And his needs are great! Why are his needs are great? Because he is missing the Absolute, so his need is the? Absolute. And if your need is Absolute, nothing can fulfill your need. The Absolute is? Infinite. If you are missing a little, then a little can fulfill you. If you are missing a little, then a little can fulfill you. But what if you are missing the Absolute. Then what would fulfill you? What hope is there? Too bad.

Two lonely fellows in a relationship, both are missing the? Both are really missing the? Absolute. And both are trying to find in each other, the?

Listener: Absolute.

AP: Now they keep exploring the Absolute, hunting for the Absolute, in the other. Do they get the Absolute? Had the other fellow had the Absolute, why would he have had the relationship with you?

The blind fellow is looking for some light, for some vision in the other. The other is saying, had I had some eyesight, why would I have picked you in the first place. The fact that I am with you, itself proves that I am blind. Now, you are blind and I am blind, and both are looking for? Eyesight, in each other. Both are asking each other for directions. Both are holding each other’s hands in the hope that the other will help them out of their blindness and misery. Will that happen?

But, man is a stubborn creature. In spite of being humiliated, beaten up, defeated, trampled a thousand times, he still gets up and says, “I can have more.”

The Absolute manifests itself as the absolutely shameful in the one who does not have the Absolute.

You see, the Absolute is absolutely present. Even in the one who does not have the Absolute. That is the definition, omnipresent. If the Absolute is omnipresent, he must be present even in fools. How is the Absolute present in fools? There he is present as Absolute foolishness. Is it a joke?

The Absolute has to be present. Either you have the Absolute, or you are absolutely…? In either case, the

Absolute is there in some form or the other. When the Absolute is not directly there, but indirectly, it is called Maya. Even Maya is presence of the Absolute.

So, the two are still sticking to each other, in spite of being disappointed a thousand times. In fact, the more they get disappointed from each other, the more they latch on to each other.

Osho is saying, “There is only one way to redeem this relationship. Please help the other.” It is significant. He could have said, “Help yourself first.” He is saying, “Help the other so that you do not remain a need for him.” Till the time the other fellow remains what he is, he will keep using you and exploiting you for his own narrow purposes. The only way then, to save yourself, is to either give up this relationship or to help the other not remain what he or she is.

Giving up the relationship is both inhumane and impractical. It is inhumane because two blind men, or one man and one woman, started it off together. It might be their ignorance, it might be their blindness. But they did set off together. Now that you have set off together, and you, by virtue of Grace, happen to gain eyesight. It is not becoming of you, it does not quite befit you to just abandon the other person midway.

The two of you started together. It is just a Grace and Grace in some sense is just an accident that you happen to walk faster. Now, would you jettison your partner? It is not the way of compassion. Also, it is impractical I say, because man lives in relationships, you can give up on this relationship, you will get into some other relationship. There again the same story will repeat. How many people would you leave, and how many people would you be left by?

Because the two of you might start together at some point. But after that point, your tracks will not necessarily remain parallel and aligned. They are bound to get a little disparate. So, rather than becoming a wanderer in relationships, firstly correct the one relationship where you are.

How do you correct it?

You correct it by helping the other out. Ordinarily, people think that if their partner is dependent on them then there is some kind of a sign of love, even if a warp sign. It is not. It is no indicator of love. In your relationship, if you are the other person’s need, then you are just being exploited. And, if you continue to remain the other person’s need, then rest assured, you too are using the other person for your own needs. Otherwise, you couldn’t have tolerated him.

To be free of the other, help the other be free of you.

It is inhumane to run away, in the name of your freedom. Personal freedom is just part of loneliness, because everything personal, exists only for the lonely man. For the lonely man, there only is – person and personal interests and personal world.

When it comes to personal interests, we talk of them as lowly. If someone wants to have personal money, we say it is? Lowly. We denounce it. But what if someone wants to have personal freedom, personal enlightenment, is that not equally lowly? Why should that not be denounced?

Someone wants to have money just for himself, we say that is base and mean. Don’t we? “Oh, you are collecting it for yourself and not sharing it with others, you are so selfish.” Don’t we say that? But what about those who seek freedom and enlightenment only for themselves? Are they not equally mean and selfish? Please! Are they not?

“I am working for my enlightenment.” The other fellow says, “I am working on my progress and promotion and prestige.” Are they two radically different?

L: No.


Don’t ask for your personal freedom. Help others around you, be free. You will never be personally liberated, never. It’s impossible. Individual enlightenment is a myth. Either all get it together or nobody gets it. We all are in the same boat. Either we all cross or we all sink together.

To help yourself, help the other.

This is not merely altruism. You are not being charitable. This is the holiest form of selfishness. Help the other crossover, on your back. When the other reaches the other shore, you would find that you too have reached the other shore. Also, without having the other on your back, you will find that you cannot swim. This is the nature of the ‘world’ river.

The ‘world’ river is a flow of relationships. Nobody cuts through it alone. Take everybody with you, as many as you can. The more you take along with you, the more strength you get to take more and more with you. And do not take this as an exaggeration. I am saying, one day you may find that have been carrying the entire Universe with you.

It is not a matter of just the relationship between two people – Father and son, and husband and wife. No, not at all.

When the author is saying, “Help the other.” The other is not merely a person. It may be a person, to begin with. But it never remains a person to end with.

People have talked of the one who cannot be talked of, in various ways. They have talked of him as a lover, they have talked of him as a creator, as a destroyer. But the most charming description of him, is him as a parent, as a father or as a mother. And that is why, even amongst Saints, you find most references to him as that of Father or Mother. Yes, some people have called him lover also. Some have called him destroyer also. Some have given him other colorful names, beautiful names. But the most prevalent name is Father or Mother. There is a reason.

Look at what he is doing. You would find that among other things, mostly he is engaged in parenting. He is engaged in having things complete their cycles. Grow up, grow up, grow up, grow up, grow up. Even death is the next step in growing up. Grow up, grow up, grow up, grow up, and die. So, even if you call him destroyer, he is still a parent. He is helping you grow by dying.

There is great joy in parenting, there is great joy in helping the other grow and seeing the other grow. Be a parent, even to your lover. Be a parent even to your husband, even to your wife. If you are a man, be a Father to your wife. If you are a wife, be a Mother to your husband. That is Godly.

Are you getting it?

Be a father to your friend, be a mother to your pet. And obviously, that is far beyond physical procreation. Obviously, that is far beyond the social institutions of marriage etc. You are a parent, irrespective of who the other is. Your touch is a touch of life. Your very touch is a healing gesture. You touch someone and he grows. You know what is growth? Growth is expression. You know what is expressed? The Truth is expressed. That is what is called being a parent. You touch the other one, and his heart comes to be expressed. That is Godly.

That is the only way, anybody ever grows. That is the only way anybody ever gains maturity. By parently touch, by the touch of God, by the touch of Absolute. Touch the other one and help him gain maturity. That is the joy of living. That is in some sense, the only way of living.

And the more we talk of it, the more it appears foolish to escape away to some corner of the city or to a village, or to a desert, or a mountain. To any secluded place and hide there. Look at the one you are worshipping. You are saying that you are going to hide in that cave so that you may worship. The one you are worshipping remains engaged. He is engaged with you, with you, with you, with you. He is always in relationships. God is in a million relationships. Million is such a small number. Why must then you abdicate your relationships?

Help the other grow. Helping the other grow is not a matter of pride, you will be skinned alive, the other does not want to change, and the other does not want to grow. You try to help the other grow, you will realize that you will, firstly have to help yourself. So, it is a parallel thing. You, remaining what you are, your intention will merely remain an intention. You will want to help the other, the other will retort and you will find that you too are reacting and all the help has gone out of the window.

You go to the other and you say, “Darling, tonight you will grow.” And that night, you have the great dance of destruction. She proves to you that she is already Mother Goddess. Needs no growth. To live through that dance of destruction, first of all, you will need to grow. That’s why I said that it will be a parallel journey. Are you getting it?

Apparently, it is quite an ego trip to be a parent, to be a helper. It is not. It is actually a destruction of the ego, to really help the other. You will have to come down from your high palace to the low grounds. The other is not prepared to go up, the other is saying I am alright where I am. You come down to my place. Now you are a resident of the high skies. The other does not come to the high skies. She stays, where she is. So, you go there and get beaten up.

It has to be a parallel thing. You will have to parallelly grow along with the other person.

Now you know what I meant when I said it’s either everybody together or nobody. Because you and the world are one. As you attempt to help the world, you are parallelly helping yourself. Remaining what you are, the world will remain what it is. And, just to help you through your night of destruction, may I just say that the joy of seeing the other grow far surpasses all the troubles that you face.

Raising a kid is a nightmare. But that nightmare is very very bearable, indeed joyful, when you really see what you are doing. The fruits are there, the fruits are daily there. And if you do not see them daily have some patience. The fruits will appear.

People talk of the pleasures of ego. The pleasures of ego are nothing compared to the great pleasure of seeing a human being blossom in front of you. That is the greatest of pleasures, I am telling you. That is so great a pleasure that ego can’t handle it. You have not merely modified, you have not merely transformed, you have really given birth, you are now God, you are now mother God. There is no pleasure bigger than this. Great pleasures, absolutely great pleasures are called Joy.

So, those of you who are addicted to some kind of a pleasure or the other, and there are many young people here. Those of you who are seekers of pleasure, to them I am saying- this pleasure exceeds any pleasure that you know of. If you are with somebody, then there is pleasure in being a lover to that person. Have that pleasure, alright fine.

The other’s company, the other’s smell, the other’s body, the other’s voice, the other’s looks, have that pleasure. But the pleasure of being a parent to the other, don’t miss out on that one. Be a Father to your girlfriend and don’t mind if she minds it. Be a Father to your Father, help him be born.

Kishore ji is saying that if God is a parent, then we must offer him respect and regular worship, Pooja, Dhyan etc. He says that he often misses out on those things and then he feels guilty.

If you are a parent, you know that it is not merely superficial respect, or rituals, or observation of ceremonies, that you want from your child. If you are really in love with your child, you do not just want him to offer some customary signs of respect. You want him to really grow. That is what any loving parent wants. His fulfillment is related to the fulfillment of the child. Nothing short of genuine growth of the child would please the parent. Right? That is the only thing that would please the parent, what? Genuine growth of the grower, the child. So, if God is a parent, what would genuinely please him? Your Pooja Archana, or your? If God is a parent, what would please him? Your real growth, or the ceremonies that you offer to God?

Right, Kishore Ji?

He is not looking for all the foods that you offer to him, for all the hymns that you sing to him. For all the fasting and the celebrations, in the name of God that you profess. He wants you to be really close to him, so close that you ARE HIM. That’s what pleases him. So, if you miss out on fasting, if you miss out on fasting, if you miss out on the recitation of prayers, it’s okay. Do not miss out on the real thing. If prayers are leading to the real thing, only then prayers are useful. Otherwise, praying and fasting and pilgrimages, and rituals are hollow.

God wants you to be Godly. Nothing more, nothing less. If you are not Godly, then anything else that you do is in vain. Live a Godly life.

Watch the session: Acharya Prashant on Osho: To help yourself, help the other be free of yourself The transcription has been edited for clarity.

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