The day Shantinath killed his wife by throwing her into a well, a Jaina monk was passing by. A crowd had gathered, and the Jaina monk said, “This mind full of anger and violence will lead you to hell.”
The situation was such that the man said, “I also want to be as silent as you are, but what can I do? I don’t know anything. When anger grips me I’m almost unconscious, and now I have killed my own beloved wife.”
The Jaina monk said, “The only way to still this mind, which is full of anger and violence and rage, is to renounce the world.” Jainism is a religion of renunciation, and the ultimate renunciation is even of clothes. The Jaina monk lives naked, because he is not allowed to possess even clothes.
The man was of a very arrogant type, and this became a challenge to him. Before the crowd he threw his clothes also into the well with the wife. The whole village could not believe it; even the Jaina monk became a little afraid, “Is he mad or something?” The man fell down at his feet and said, “You may have taken many decades to reach the stage of renunciation…. I renounce the world, I renounce everything. I am your disciple ‒ initiate me.”
His name was Shantinath, and shanti means “peace.” It often happens…if you see an ugly woman, most probably her name will be Sunderbhai, which means “beautiful woman.” In India people have a strange way…to the blind man they give the name Nayan Sukh. Nayan Sukh means “one whose eyes give him great pleasure.”
The Jaina monk said, “You have a beautiful name. I will not change it; I will keep it, but from this moment you have to remember that peace has to become your very vibration.”
The man disciplined himself, stilled his mind, fasted long, tortured himself, and soon became more famous than his master. Angry people, arrogant people, egoistic people can do things which peaceful people will take a little time to do. He became very famous, and thousands of people used to come just to touch his feet.
After twenty years he was in the capital. A man from his village had come for some purpose, and he thought, “It will be good to go and see what transformation has happened to Shantinath. So many stories are heard ‒ that he has become a totally new man, that his old self is gone and a new, fresh being has arisen in him, that he really has become peace, silence, tranquility.”
So the man went with great respect. But when he saw Muni Shantinath, seeing his face, his eyes, he could not think that there had been any change. There was none of the grace which necessarily radiates from a mind which has become silent. Those eyes were still as egoistic ‒ in fact they had become more pointedly egoistic. The man’s presence was even more ugly than it used to be.
Still, the man went close. Shantinath recognized the man, who had been his neighbor ‒ but now it was beneath his dignity to recognize him. The man also saw that Shantinath had recognized him, but he was pretending that he did not. He thought, “That shows much.” He went close by Shantinath and asked, “Can I ask you a question? What is your name?”
Naturally, great anger arose in Shantinath because he knew that this man knew perfectly well what his name was. But still he kept himself in control, and he said, “My name is Muni Shantinath.”
The man said, “It is a beautiful name ‒ but my memory is very short, can you repeat it again? I have forgotten…what name did you say?”
This was too much. Muni Shantinath used to carry a staff. He took the staff in his hand…he forgot everything ‒ twenty years of controlling the mind ‒ and he said, “Ask again and I will show you who I am. Have you forgotten? ‒ I killed my wife, I am the same man only then did he recognize what had happened.
In a single moment of unconsciousness he realized that twenty years have gone down the drain; he has not changed at all. But millions of people feel great silence in him…. Yes, he has become very controlled, he keeps himself repressed, and it has paid off. So much respect and he has no qualification for that respect ‒ so much honor, even kings come to touch his feet.
Your so-called saints are nothing but controlled animals. The mind is nothing but a long heritage of all your animal past. You can control it, but the controlled mind is not the awakened mind.
The process of controlling and repressing and disciplining is taught by all the religions, and because of their fallacious teaching humanity has not moved a single inch ‒ it remains barbarous. Any moment people start killing each other. It does not take a single moment to lose themselves; they forget completely that they are human beings, and something much more, something better is expected of them. There have been very few people who have been able to avoid this deception of controlling mind and believing that they have attained mindlessness.
To attain mindlessness a totally different process is involved: I call it the ultimate alchemy. It consists only of a single element ‒ that of watchfulness.
Osho – The Great Zen Master Ta Hui,