OSHO STORIES : Buddha’s Footprints

He was sitting under a tree. One astrologer approached him — he was very puzzled, because he saw the footprints of the Buddha on the wet sand and he could not believe his eyes. All the scriptures that he had been studying his whole life had been telling him about certain signs that exist in the feet of a man who rules the world — a chakravartin — a ruler of all the six continents, of the whole earth. And he saw in the footprints in the wet sand on the riverbank all the symbols so clearly that he could not believe his eyes! Either all his scriptures were wrong and he was wasting his life in astrology…otherwise, how was it possible on such a hot afternoon, in such a small, dirty village, a chakravartin would come and walk barefoot, on the burning hot sand?

He followed the footprints, just in search of the man to whom these footprints belonged. He found the Buddha sitting under a tree. He was even more puzzled. The face was that of a chakravartin — the grace, the beauty, the power, the aura — but the man was a beggar, with a begging bowl!

The astrologer touched the feet of the Buddha and asked him, “Who are you, sir? You have puzzled me. You should be a chakravartin, a world ruler. What are you doing here, sitting under this tree? Either all my astrology books are wrong, or I am hallucinating and you are not really there.”

Buddha said, “Your books are absolutely right — but there is something which belongs to no category, not even to the category of a chakravartin. I am, but I am nobody in particular.”

The astrologer said, “You are puzzling me more. How can you be without being anybody in particular? You must be a god who has come to visit the earth — I can see it in your eyes!”

Buddha said, “I am not a god.”

The astrologer said, “Then you must be a gandharva — a celestial musician.”

Buddha said, “No, I am not a gandharva either.”

And the astrologer went on asking, “Then are you a king in disguise? Who are you? You can’t be an animal, you can’t be a tree, you can’t be a rock — who exactly are you?”

And the answer the Buddha gave is of immense importance to understand. He said, “I am just a Buddha — I am just awareness, and nothing else. I don’t belong to any category. Every category is an identification and I don’t have any identity.”

The Dhammapada: The Way of the Buddha, Vol-1

OSHO STORIES : Real Freedom

I have heard….
Once Diogenes was caught by a few people, robbers. Diogenes was a very healthy mystic. In the West, he seems to be the only person who can be compared to Mahavira in the East. He used to live naked, and he had a beautiful body. It is said that even Alexander was jealous of him. And he was a naked fakir; he had nothing other than his glory, than his own beauty. He was caught: he was meditating under a tree in a forest, and a few robbers caught him. And they thought, ”It is good. We can get a good price for him. He can be sold in a slave market.” But they were afraid, because the man looked very strong. The robbers were at least half a dozen, but still they were afraid. And they approached very cautiously because he could be dangerous. He alone seemed to be enough for six people.

Diogenes looked at them and said, ”Don’t be afraid. Don’t be afraid, I’m not going to fight you. You can come close to me, and you can put your chains on me.” They were surprised. They chained him, they made him a prisoner, and they took him away to the marketplace. On the way he said, ”But why have you chained me? You could have just asked me, and I would have followed. Why make such fuss about it?” They said, ”We cannot believe that somebody is so willing to become a slave!”
And Diogenes laughed and he said, ”Because I am a free man, I am not worried about this.” they could not understand. Then, in the marketplace, standing in the middle of the market, he shouted, ”A Master has come to be sold here. Is some slave desirous of purchasing him?” Look what he said: ”A Master has come to be sold here. Is some slave desirous of purchasing him?”

A Master is a Master. Real freedom is not against bondage, real freedom is beyond bondage.

If your freedom is against bondage, you are not really free. You can escape to the Himalayas just because you are afraid of the marketplace and the wife and the children, but you are not really a free man. The Himalayas cannot become your freedom. You are afraid of the wife; and if the wife comes to see you in the Himalayas, you will start trembling. Your henpecked husband will suddenly be there.

~ Osho
Path of Love