Osho – The Upanishads have a very aesthetic approach towards life

Osho – The greatest contribution of the seers of the Upanishads is that they have made this world and the other world synonymous. They have dropped the idea of the mundane and the sacred. THAT represents the absolute, the ultimate, the further shore; this represents the immediate, the herenow, this shore. Both are one because: that is the whole, this is the whole — there is no distinction at all.

The ordinary religions live on condemning this world; by condemning this world they praise the other world. The Upanishads have a totally different approach: they praise this world with all its beauty, splendor; through praising this world they praise the other world. This approach is life-affirmative.

The Upanishads are in tremendous love with life. They don’t teach renunciation, they teach rejoicing. They would have agreed with Jesus when Jesus says again and again to his disciples, “Rejoice! Rejoice! I say again to you rejoice!” The Upanishads have a very aesthetic approach towards life — not the approach of an ascetic but the approach of a poet, a painter, a musician, a dancer. Their approach is in no way pathological.

But that vision has completely disappeared. Instead of that ecstatic vision of life, for three thousand years humanity has lived with a very sado-masochistic idea: torture yourself and teach others so that they can also torture themselves, because that’s the only way to make God rejoice. This is really a condemnation of God, as if God is a torturer, as if he enjoys people being in pain and anguish.

Even today we go on praising the ascetic attitude. The person who tortures himself becomes a great saint. If he fasts starves his body, lies down on a bed of thorns, stands naked in the cold, sits in the hottest season surrounded by fire, then we have great respect for him.

This respect simply shows that our minds are in a very ill state. We are not for health, for wholeness, for joy, for bliss. We are suicidal, murderous. And in the name of religion great suicide has been committed. The whole humanity has become suicidal.

Source – Osho Book “I Am That”