Beauty in Sadness – Inspired by a ‘mad’ mystic

I have wanted to share a lot of great stuff often. And hesitate because I believe the story of some of my friends
who urge be to write ‘my stuff’ – give expression to my voice.. and why share stuff from someone else.

Well… my voice feels this
Sometimes, ‘I quote others only to better express myself’
When I resonate with something, I share it.. the very filter of my seeing and resonating and sharing on my blog makes it
my stuff.
And I am fine of course if some people do not agree.
You might enjoy this piece nevertheless.

Sadness gives depth. Happiness gives height. Sadness gives roots. Happiness gives branches. Happiness is like a tree going into the sky, and sadness is like the roots going down into the womb of the earth. Both are needed, and the higher a tree goes, the deeper it goes, simultaneously. The bigger the tree, the bigger will be its roots. In fact, it is always in proportion. That’s its balance.
— Osho

(The above was shared by Dola, my dearest friend in a status update Feb 2014 and thought its a nice addition to this post- click on the link if you want to go there and see some other comments!;))

When I was going through a period of deep depression, this came to me. And it made me hold my sadness with more ease and grace. It made me smile. Someone said, ‘An excess of pain makes you laugh, an excess of joy makes you cry’
There is a great book, ‘Daily Afflictions’ – which you must check out. It is a book for all of us who would like to make friendship with our darkness. So that, like dear old Kahlil Gibran says, ‘A day will come when you shall bless darkness as you bless light’

Hope you will enjoy reading this piece from Osho.

The Alchemy of Celebration- from Osho
Can you talk to us more about celebration? Is it possible to celebrate misery?

It is possible because celebration is an attitude. Even about misery you can take an attitude of celebration. For example: you are sad – don’t get identified with sadness. Become a witness and enjoy the moment of the sadness, because sadness has its own beauties, you have never watched. You get so identified that you never penetrate the beauties of a sad moment. If you watch you will be surprised at what treasures you have been missing. Look – when you are happy you are never so deep as when you are sad. Sadness has a depth to it; happiness has shallowness about it.

Move into the depth, watch it. Happiness is noisy; sadness has a silence to it. Happiness may be like the day, sadness is like the night,. Happiness may be like the light, sadness is like darkness. Light comes and goes; darkness remains – it is eternal. Light happens sometimes; darkness is always there. If you move into sadness all these things will be felt. Suddenly you will become aware that sadness has all these things, is there like an object, you are watching and witnessing, and suddenly you start feeling happy. Such beautiful sadness!- a flower of darkness, a flower of eternal depth . like an abyss without any bottom , so silent, so musical: there is no noise at all, no disturbance. One can go on falling and falling into it endlessly, and one can come out of it absolutely rejuvenated. It is a rest.

It depends on the attitude. When you become sad you think that something bad has happened to you. It is an interpretation that something bad has happened to you. And then you start trying to escape from it. You never meditate on it. Then you want to go to somebody: to a party, to the club, or put the T.V on or the radio, or start reading the newspaper – something so that you can forget. This is a wrong attitude that has been given to you – that sadness is wrong. Nothing is wrong with it. It is another polarity in life.
Happiness is one pole, sadness is another. Blissfulness is one pole, misery is another. Life consists of both, and life is a ritual because of both. A life only of blissfulness will have extension, but will not have depth. A life of only sadness will have depth, but will not have extension. A life of both sadness and blissfulness is multi-dimensional; it moves in all dimensions together. Watch the statue of Buddha or sometimes look into my eyes and you will find blissfulness, a peace, sadness also. You will find a blissfulness which contains in it sadness also, because that sadness gives it depth.

To me, life in its totality is good. And when you understand life in its totality, only then can you celebrate: otherwise not. Celebration means: whatsoever happens is irrelevant – I will celebrate. Celebration is not conditional on certain things: ‘ When I am happy then I will celebrate,” or, “When I am unhappy I will not celebrate.’ Celebration is unconditional; I celebrate life. It brings unhappiness – good, I celebrate it. It brings happiness – good, I celebrate it. Celebration is my attitude, unconditional to what life brings.
But a problem arises because whenever I use words, those words have connotations in you mind. When I say ‘Celebrate’, you think one has to be happy. How can one celebrate when one is sad? I am not saying that one has to be happy to celebrate when one is sad? I am not saying that one has to happy to celebrate. Celebration is gratefulness for whomsoever life gives to you. Whatsoever God gives to you, celebration is gratitude; it is gratefulness. I have told you and I will tell you again….

A Sufi Mystic was very poor, hungry, rejected, tired of the journey. He went to a village in the night and the village wouldn’t accept him. The village belonged to the orthodox people, and when orthodox Mohammedans are there it is very difficult to persuade them. They wouldn’t even give him shelter in the town. The night was cold and he was hungry, tire, shivering a tree. His disciples were sitting there with great sadness, depression, even anger. And then he started praying and he said to God, ‘you are wonderful! You always give me whatsoever I need.’ This was too much. A disciple said, ‘ Wait; now you are going too far, particularly on this night. These words are false. We are hungry, tired, with no clothes. And cold nights rejected by town, we are without shelter. For what are you giving your thankfulness to God? What do you mean when you say,” You always give me whatsoever I need?” ‘ The mystic said, ‘Yes I repeat it again: God gives whatsoever I need, To-night I need poverty, tonight I need being rejected, tonight I need to be hungry, in danger. Otherwise, why should He give it to me? It must be a need. It is needed and I have to be grateful, He looks after my needs so beautifully. He is really wonderful!’ this is an attitude that is unconcerned with the situation is not relevant.

Celebrate, whatsoever the case, if you are sad, then celebrate because you’re sad. Try it. Just give it a try and you will be surprised – it happens. You are sad? – start dancing because sadness is so beautiful, such a silent flower of being. Dance, enjoy, and suddenly you will feel that the sadness is disappearing, a distance created. By and by, you will forget sadness and you will be celebrating. You have transformed the energy.
This is what alchemy is: jealousy – baser metals can be transformed into gold because they are constituted of the same elements as gold. There is no difference between gold and iron because they have same constituents, the same electrons. Have you ever thought about it, that a piece of coal and the greatest diamond in the world are just the same? They don’t have any difference. In fact coal pressed by the earth for millions of years becomes diamond. Just s difference of pressure, but they are both carbon dioxide, both constituted of the same elements.

The baser can be changed into the higher. Nothing is lacking in the baser. Only a rearrangement, a recomposition is needed. That is the whole of what alchemy means. When you are sad, celebrate, and you are giving a new composition to sadness. You are bringing something to sadness, which will transform it. You are bringing celebration to it. Angry? – Have a beautiful dance. In the beginning it will be angry. You will start dancing and the dance will be angry, aggressive, and violent. By and by, it will become softer and softer and softer, when suddenly, you will have forgotten anger. The energy has changed into dancing
But when you are  angry, you can’t think of singing. When you are sad, you can’t think of singing. Why not make your sadness a song? Sing, play on your flute. In the beginning the notes will be sad, but nothing is wrong with a sad note. Have you heard, in the afternoon sometimes, when everything is hot, burning hot, fire all around, and suddenly from a mango grove you can hear a cuckoo start singing? In the beginning the note is sad. She is calling her lover, her beloved, on a hot afternoon. Everything is fiery all around, and she is hankering for love. A very sad note, but beautiful. By and by, the sad note changes into a happy note. The lover starts responding from another grove. Now it is no more a hot afternoon; everything is cooling down in the heart. Now the note is different when the lover responds, everything is changed. It is an alchemical change.
You are sad? – start singing, praying, and dancing. Whatsoever you can do, do and by and by, the baser metal is changed into higher metal-gold. Once you know the key, your life will never be the same again. You can unlock any door. And this is the master key: to celebrate everything.

No death is death, because every death opens a new door – it is a beginning. There is no end to life, there is always a new, a resurrection.

If you are sad, then I say celebrate, dance, sing. What are you to lose? At the most, sadness will be lost, nothing else. But you think it is impossible. And the very idea that is impossible will not allow you to give it a try. And I say it is one of the most easy things in the world, because energy is neutral. The same energy becomes sadness; the same energy becomes anger; the same energy becomes sexuality; the same energy becomes compassion; the same energy becomes meditation. Energy is one. You don’t have many types of energies. You don’t have many separate pockets on energy where this energy is labeled ‘sadness’ and this energy is labeled ‘happiness’. Energies are not pigeon-holed, they are not separated. There exists no watertight compartment in you. You are simply one. This one energy becomes sadness, this one energy becomes anger. It is up to you.

One has to learn the secret, the art of how to transform energies. You simply give a direction and the same energy starts moving. And when there is a possibility of transforming anger into bliss, greed into compassion, jealousy into love…You don’t know what you are losing. You don’t know what you are missing. You are missing the whole point of being here in this universe. Give it a try.

Moving and Breathing enable energies to shift.
Lets learn to see beauty and love, in all that is.
A favorite aspect of what I have learnt and I share in my workshops is: All behavior has a positive intention.
For example, a person who is jealous of you- if you enter his world, you can see that he is aspiring to be like you in some way
that he appreciates.
Might we learn to see the dearest freshness that lives deep inside things?
Can we develop a willingness to see things upside down and inside out?
Welcome to Reality.

“If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same; 

Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it, 
And—which is more—you’ll be a Man, my son!”

– Rudyard Kipling

6 thoughts on “Beauty in Sadness – Inspired by a ‘mad’ mystic

  1. Till the time one does not enter the waters one cannot learn to swim….. similarly, if I am sad I allow myself to go deep into the same thing not trying to avoid it or run away from it.
    In fact I make it a point to spend more time with myself, with the feeling and I come out more peaceful, more relaxed, more mature 🙂 victorious!
    Its the secret to all feelings… just letting it all flow like a a stream and watching all that comes up…. by supressing it, the feelings only tend to come back more agressively,
    so just accept and watch dive deep, handle calmly and you see it getting transformed into something very simple yet brilliant n beautiful….. 😉 good one k

    1. Beautifully said, Reshma

      Letting it flow like a stream and watching it come and go.
      also what I learnt from Bentinho is to be in touch with the awareness which is always already present.. in which all this song and dance is happening .. of feelings and other
      exotic and not so exotic experiences..

  2. Today this was Jeff Foster’s status which spoke to this deeply:


    Sometimes it’s okay to just feel sad,
    without knowing why you’re feeling sad,
    or how the sadness got there,
    or worrying about how long it will stay.
    It’s okay to feel sad, without trying to not feel sad,
    without judging yourself at all.

    Feel directly the raw energy in the body, without naming it.
    Feel the tenderness in the chest, the lump in the throat,
    the shaky feeling in your system.
    Don’t resist the energy, and don’t worry about any resistance.
    Allow the energy to move, to grow bigger if it needs to,
    to release itself in its own time.

    Be patient with sadness.
    Let it come closer, let it engulf you if it must.
    Until there is no division between ‘self’ and ‘sadness’.
    Until you cannot call it ‘sadness’ at all.
    Until there is only intimacy.

    Be the embrace of sadness, its loving parent,
    its home, its protection.

    Yes, sadness keeps you soft and flexible.
    It reminds you, when you have forgotten,
    of the beautiful fragility underneath all things.

    In the softness of the heart lies its capacity to love.

    Sadness is not the opposite of joy, but its gateway.

    – Jeff Foster

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s