What is right, What is wrong?

Rajiv Vaishnav
8 min readApr 7, 2024


You ask me: what is right, what is wrong?

I say to you to be AWAKE is right. To be ASLEEP is wrong. I don’t determine acts wrong and right as such. My focus is your being. My effort is that you are there, in your being. Then whatever you do is right.

One Zen monk, throughout his whole life, was imprisoned again and again. He was a great Master with thousands of disciples.

All his disciples suffered for it because everybody was telling them, ”What kind of Master have you got? He talks about great things and then suddenly one day you find him stealing some small thing. And he always gets caught. Even ordinary thieves don’t always get caught. And you say he is fully aware, careful, alert. And we understand, because even his disciples have a different quality surrounding them. And we know your Master, we see him. We are surprised — why should he steal?”

Even the magistrates loved him, respected him. And they prayed of him, ”Why do you do such strange things? We can’t understand, it is beyond our comprehension” — because he was stealing small things from his own disciples, and naturally the law had to take its course.

The magistrates would say, ”We know there is something else in it. Why should you steal one shoe of somebody’s? — it is useless, you cannot use it. And now we have to send you for two months into jail.”

The Zen Master was always very happy when he heard, and he used to say to the magistrates, ”Can’t you send me for a little longer? — because anyway, when I come out I will do it again, and you will have to send me in again. Why can’t you send me for a longer period and save me from doing all these things?”

Only in the end, when he was dying, did his disciples ask, ”Now let us at least ask, because we will never again have a chance to know what was the reason you were stealing things, things which mattered not at all to you. We were always ready to bring anything you wanted, but you never said anything, you never asked for anything.”

He laughed. He said, ”The real reason was I wanted to be as long as possible in the jail because there are three thousand people in the jail, and I have found in those three thousand people more innocent, more natural human beings than I find outside the jail. And outside the jail there are many masters and many religions, and they are doing their work. Nobody takes care of those poor people. When I am in the jail I teach them meditation, I teach them how to be aware — the jail has become a monastery!

”We have changed it completely. All the prisoners are meditating. The jailer cannot detect it because they are simply doing everything with awareness. They are continuing to do the same work as before: if cutting wood, then cutting wood; if cutting rocks, then cutting rocks; if making roads, then making roads. Whatever they were doing before they are doing now, but with a great difference.

”And the best monastery I know right now,” he said, ”is the jail where I have been going continually, because this jail has people who are sentenced for life — twenty years, thirty years. Now, this is a great opportunity: for thirty years they can meditate without any disturbance from the outside world.

Where else could I find such people?

”And I am immensely happy because I am leaving behind me, in that jail, a thread which will continue for centuries. This jail will remain a totally different jail. Whoever comes there is bound to get involved in meditation because some old-timers will always be there.”

Now, looking at it from the outside, a man stealing is doing something wrong, and a man continually going to jail, being sentenced again and again, is certainly a criminal. But if you look at that man’s consciousness and the act out of that consciousness, it is totally different.

Never judge anybody by their act, because the real thing is not the act but the consciousness through which that act has been performed. But we all judge by acts because acts are available outside like objects. Consciousness we don’t know.

So to me it is not a question of what you do: the act is neither right nor wrong, the act is neutral. It depends on who does it, that person’s integrity, awareness. If an awakened man is doing it, it is right. Otherwise, whatever you do, it is going to be like: on the surface looking really great; deep down just third-rate.

You also ask: Is there something like sin and its punishment?

I have told you there is only one sin: That is unawareness.

And you are being punished every moment for it.

There is no other punishment.

Your suffering, your misery, your anxiety, your anguish — and you are still hoping to be thrown in hell? You are not satisfied with all the misery that you are going through? Do you think hell is going to be better than here? What more punishment is there?

Each moment of unawareness carries its own punishment, and each moment of awareness carries its own reward. They are intrinsic parts, you cannot divide them.

Love, in our minds, is something against hate. Now, there is no opposite to love. That’s why, once in a while, I have been reminding you that the man of enlightenment has neither hate nor love — that is to deny your hate and your love. Love and hate as polarities, he has none. That does not mean that he is indifferent, although that’s how it will appear to you. That’s why I speak of the poverty of language.

He has a new kind, a new quality of love which is not opposed to hate. Now, there is no word for it; so either I have to say he has no hate, no love the way you have, or I have to say that his love is a totally new kind of love; a love which is closer to compassion than to passion, which is closer to a relatedness than to a relationship; a love which is more a giving without asking anything in return than your so-called love. which is a bargain — where each party is trying to get more and give less. The enlightened man simply gives.

It is not that he wants to get something from you — you don’t have anything to give to him. What do you have to give him?

He gives because he has too much to give, he is overburdened.

He gives because he is like a raincloud, so full of rain that it has to shower. It does not matter where, on whom — on rocks, on good soil, on gardens, in the ocean… it doesn’t matter at all. The cloud simply wants to unburden itself.

The enlightened man is just like a raincloud.

He gives you love, not to get anything back. He shares it and is obliged to you that you allowed him the opportunity; that you were open enough, available, vulnerable; that you did not reject when he was ready to pour all his blessings on you; that you opened your heart and received as much as was within your capacity.

The world can be full of love, the love I am talking about. And only that love will transform the hatred in the world — not the love that has been taught to you. That has not made the world more loving, it has made the world more hateful: made its hate truer and more authentic and its love more of a hypocrisy.

The fact is, awareness itself transforms your hate into love, not that you transform it. Your work and function is simply to remain aware. Don’t let anything happen in your life without awareness.

I am giving you the simplest and the most natural religion possible. That’s why I say it is the first and the last, because it cannot be simplified more. There is nothing more below awareness; we have come to the very last root. There is no way to go beyond it, further than it. This is it!

Just go on doing all the things that you are doing, but keep aware. Make it a constant remembrance that no act passes in unconsciousness.

Many times, you will forget, many times you will remember. Slowly slowly, you will forget less, remember more. And one day it happens… whenever the balance of remembrance is more than the balance of forgetfulness, whenever it is weightier than your forgetfulness — instantly the revolution, the transformation. Suddenly you are a totally different man — the new man is born.

And that new man will find this whole world new because he will have fresh eyes with new qualities to see, fresh ears with new ways to hear, new hands to feel and touch things in a new way. And a single man of that awareness starts triggering the process of awareness in others. Not by any effort, not that he has to do something to trigger the process — that doing has been our undoing — he has just to go on living his way, being his way, and it starts happening of its own accord.

His presence somehow starts something in people who come close to him… an arising of a new energy, the beginning of a new flame. He does nothing, nor does the other person do anything: it happens. All that is needed is a little closeness, friendship.

And that’s what the function of the Master is — to gather friends around himself. There is no goal to be achieved, no particular activity to be done.

The function of the Master is just to remain available.

One never knows when somebody is on the borderline from where the jump can happen. One never knows in what moment one is open — and just a look from the Master’s eyes, and things will never be the same again.

But these are all unpredictable moments, so one has to wait silently in awareness.

The most you can do is: don’t create barriers, don’t create hindrances, don’t keep yourself tight, away. Be relaxed… come closer.

You have nothing to lose — you have only to gain.

Osho: From Misery to Enlightenment: CHAPTER 13. REAL LOVE IS REAL WILD! (Excerpts)
Osho: From Ignorance to Innocence: CHAPTER 27. BAPTISM: WADING FOR GODOT (Excerpts)

बुरा बुरे के अलावा भला भी होता है
हर आदमी में कोई दूसरा भी होता है …………..अनवर शऊर

burā bure ke alāva bhalā bhī hotā hai
har aadmī meñ koī dūsrā bhī hotā hai ……….ANWAR SHUOOR

Besides bad, there is also good.
In every person, there is someone else too.

I really like this simple sounding song with a deeper layer of meaning. “Kaun Kisiko Baandh Saka .” May be also because I am a fan of Mohammed Rafi who sang it so effortlessly. Music Director:
R D Burman Lyricist: Majrooh Sultanpuri for the film “Kaalia”.

(257) Kaun Kisiko Bandh Saka | Amitabh Bachchan | Kaalia | RD Burman | Best Hindi Songs — YouTube