The Three Fears
In therapy group situations, there are three fears that always come up in people: the fear of going crazy, the fear of sexual orgasm and the fear of dying.
- The fear of going crazy is essentially the fear of being alone.
- The fear of orgasm in essence is guilt.
- The fear of death is essentially fear of the unknown.
Osho’s comment on the three fears was recorded live in an interview with Veeresh in September 1985:
In these three fears humanity has lived for thousands of years. They are not personal – they are collective. They come from the collective unconscious.
1. Going Crazy
The fear of going crazy is in everyone, for the simple reason because their intelligence has not been allowed to develop. Intelligence is dangerous to the vested interest. So for thousands of years they have been cutting the very roots of intelligence.
In Japan they have a certain tree which is thought to be a great art. It is simply murder. The trees are four hundred, five hundred years old, and six inches high. Generations of gardeners have taken care of them. The technique is: the trees are put in a pot without any bottom, and they go on cutting their roots; they don’t allow their roots to go into the earth. When you don’t allow the roots to go deeper, the tree simply grows old – it never grows up. It is a strange phenomenon to see that tree. It looks ancient, but it has only grown old, old, old, but it has never grown up. It has never blossomed; it has never given any fruits.
That is exactly the situation of man. His roots are cut. Man lives almost uprooted. He has to be made uprooted, so that he can become dependent on the society, on the culture, on the religion, on the state, on the parents, on everybody. He has to depend. He himself has no roots.
The moment he becomes aware he has no roots, he feels he is going crazy, he is going insane. He is losing every support, he is falling into a dark ditch, because his knowledge is borrowed, it is not his own. The respectability is borrowed; he himself has no respect for his own being. His whole personality is borrowed from some source: the university, the church, the state; he himself has nothing of his own.
Just think of a man who lives in a grand palace with everything conceivable for his luxuries. One day suddenly you make him aware that the palace does not belong to him, and that neither these luxuries belong to him. They belong to somebody else, who is coming, and he will be thrown out. He will go crazy.
So in deep therapy you will come across this point, and the person has to face it and allow it. Allow in the therapy the situation that the person can go crazy. Once he goes crazy, he will drop the fear. Now he knows what craziness is. The fear is always of the unknown.
Let him go crazy, and he will soon come down, because there is no real base to his fear. It is a fear projected by the society. The parents say, “If you don’t follow us, if you disobey, you will be condemned.” The Jewish god says in the Talmud, “I am a very jealous god, a very angry god.” Remember that I am not nice, I am not your uncle. All the religions have been doing it.
Just go off the way which is followed by the mob and they will declare you crazy. So, everybody goes on clinging to the crowd, remaining part of a religion, a church, a party, a nation, a race. He is afraid to be left alone, and that’s what you are doing when you bring him to his own depths. All that crowd, all those connections disappear: he is left alone, nobody on whom he has always depended is there. He cannot depend on his own intelligence. That is the problem. Unless he starts growing his own intelligence, he will always remain afraid of being crazy.
Not only that, the society can make him crazy any moment. If the society wants to make him crazy, if that is in their favour, they will make him crazy. In the Soviet Union it happens almost every day. I am taking the example of the Soviet Union because they do it more scientifically, methodologically. It happens everywhere all over the world, but their methods are very primitive. For example in India, if a person behaves in a way that is not approved, he is made an outcast. He cannot get any support from anyone in the town. People will not even speak to him. His own family will close the doors upon his face. The man is bound to go crazy: you are driving him crazy.
The fear has entered into very deep realms of unconsciousness. The work of therapy is to make the person free of that fear. If he is free of that fear, he is free of society, free of culture, free of religion, free of god, heaven, hell and all nonsense. All that nonsense is significant because of this fear and to make that nonsense significant the fear has been created. It is the ugliest crime one can think of. It is being done to every child around the world every moment. The people who are doing it have no bad intentions. They think they are doing something for the best of the child. Their parents have conditioned them; they are transferring the same conditioning to their children. Basically the whole of humanity stands on the verge of madness.
In deep therapy the fear grips suddenly, because the person is losing all the props, supports. The crowd is disappearing farther and farther away. He is being left alone. Suddenly there is darkness, and there is fear. He has never been trained, disciplined for being alone, and that is the function of meditation.
No therapy is complete without meditation, because only meditation can give him his lost roots, his strength of being an individual. There is nothing to fear. The conditioning is that you have to be afraid on each moment, each step. The whole of humanity lives in paranoia. This humanity could have lived in paradise; it is living in hell.
So help the person to understand that this is nothing to be worried about, there is nothing to be afraid of; it is a created fear. Every child is born fearless. He can play with the snakes with no fear. He has no idea of fear or death, or anything. Meditation brings the person back to his childhood; he is reborn. So help the person to understand why the fear is. Make it clear that it is a phony phenomenon imposed upon him, so there is no need to be worried.
In this situation you can go crazy. Don’t be afraid. Enjoy for the first time you have got this situation in which you can be crazy and yet not condemned, but loved, respected. The group has to respect the person, to love the person; he needs it. He will cool down. He will come out of the fear with a great freedom, with great stamina, strength, and integrity.
2. Sexual Orgasm
The second fear is of sexual orgasm. That, too, is created by religions. All religions are existing because they have turned man against his own energies. Sex is man’s whole energy, his life energy. Religious prophets and messiahs, messengers of god, they are all doing the same work in different words, different languages, but their work is the same: to make man an enemy of himself. The basic strategy is, because sex is the most powerful energy in you, sex should be condemned. Guilt should be created. Then arises a problem for the individual. His nature is sensuous, sexual, and his mind is full of garbage against it. He is in a split. Neither can he drop the mind, because dropping the mind means dropping the society, the religion, the prophet, Jesus Christ, god, everything. He is not capable to do that, unless he has become an individual and is able to be alone without any fear.
So man is afraid of sex as far as his mind is concerned, but his biology has nothing to do with the mind. The biology has not received any information from the mind. There is no communication; the biology has its own way of functioning. So the biology will drive him towards sex, and his mind will be standing there continuously condemning him. So he makes love, but in a hurry. That hurry has a very psychological reason. The hurry is he is doing something wrong, he is doing something against god, against religion. He is feeling guilty and he cannot manage to do it. So the only compromise is to do it, but be quick. That avoids the orgasm.
Now there are implications upon implications. A man who has not known orgasm feels unfulfilled, frustrated, and angry. Because he has never been in a state which nature provides freely, where he could have relaxed totally and become one with existence at least for a few moments. Because of his hurry he cannot manage the orgasm. Sex has become equivalent to ejaculation. That is not true as far as nature is concerned. Ejaculation is only a part that you can manage without orgasm. You can reproduce children, so biology is not worried about your orgasm. Your biology is satisfied if you reproduce children. They can be reproduced only by ejaculation, there is no need for orgasm.
Orgasm is a tremendous gift of nature. Man is deprived and because he is so quick in making love, the woman is deprived. The woman needs time to warm up. Her whole body is erotic, and unless her whole body is throbbing with joy, she will not be able to experience orgasm, for that there is no time. So for millions of years women have been completely denied their birthright. That’s why they have become so bitchy, so continuously nagging, and always ready to fight. There is no possibility of having a conversation with a woman. You are living with a woman for years, but there is not a single conversation that you can recall, when you were both sitting together, talking about great things of life. No, all that you will remember will be fighting, throwing things, being nasty.
The woman is not responsible for it. She is being deprived of her whole possibility of blissfulness. Then she becomes negative and this has given chance to the priests. All the churches and the temples are filled up with women, because they are the losers more than men are. Man’s orgasm is local. His whole body is not erotic. So his whole body does not suffer if there is no orgasmic experience, but the woman’s whole body suffers.
It is good business for religions. Unless people are psychologically suffering, they will not come to the churches. They will not listen to all kinds of idiotic theologies. Because they are suffering, they want some consolation. They want some hope at least after death. In life they know there is no hope; it is finished. This gives a chance to religions to show to men and women both that sex is absolutely futile. It has no meaning, no significance. You are unnecessarily losing your energy, wasting your energy. Their argument seems to be correct, because you have never experienced anything. So by preventing the orgasmic experience religions have made men and women slaves.
Now the same slavery functions for other vested interests. The latest priest is the psychoanalyst. Now he is exploiting the same thing. I was amazed to know that almost all new priests, particularly Christians, study psychology in their theological colleges. Psychology, psychoanalysis have become a necessary part of their education. Now, what has psychology to do with the Bible? What has psychoanalysis to do with Jesus Christ? The priests are being trained in psychology and psychoanalysis, because it is clear that the old priest is disappearing, he is losing his grip over people. The priest has to be made up to date, so he can function not only as a religious priest, but also as a psychoanalyst, as a psychologist. Naturally the psychologist cannot compete with him. He has something more: religion. This whole thing has happened through the simple device of condemning sex.
So when in groups you find people afraid of orgasm, help them to understand that orgasm is going to make you saner, more intelligent, less angry, less violent, more loving. Orgasm is going to give you your roots that have been taken away from you. So don’t be worried.
Mixed with the fear of orgasm is the fear that one may go crazy. If in orgasm one goes crazy, help him to go crazy. Only then will he be able to have it in its totality.
Orgasm relaxes every fibre of your mind, your heart, and your body. It is immensely important for meditation that the person has the experience of orgasm. Then you can make him understand what meditation is. It is an orgasmic experience with the whole of existence. Orgasm can be so beautiful, so beneficial, and so healthy, with a single human being; meditation is getting into oneness with the whole that surrounds you, from the smallest blade of grass to the biggest star, millions of light years away.
The question is always the first experience. Then he knows that his craziness was not craziness, but a kind of explosion of joy. That cools down and leaves him behind healthier, more whole, and more intelligent. Then the fear of orgasm is disappeared. With it he is finished with the religion, with the psychoanalysis and all kinds of nonsense for which he is paying so tremendously.
The third fear you say is of death. The first is of being alone. Much of the fear of death will be destroyed by the first experience of being alone and having no fear. The fear of death will be immediately destroyed by the experience of orgasm. In orgasm the person disappears. The ego is no more. There is an experiencing, but the experiencer is no more.
These first two steps will help to solve the third step very easily. With each step you have to go on deepening his meditativeness. Any therapy without meditation cannot help much. It is just superficial touching here and there, and soon the man will be the same again. A real transformation has never happened without meditation. These are beautiful situations as far as meditation is concerned.
Use the first to make him alone; use the second to give him courage and tell him to drop all thoughts. Just go crazily orgasmic. Don’t bother what happens. We are here to take care of you. With these two steps, the third will be very easy. That is the easiest. It looks the biggest fear of man; it is not true. You don’t know death, how can you be afraid of it? You have always seen other people dying, you have never seen yourself dying. Who knows, you are maybe the exception? Because there is no proof that you are going to die. Those who have died have given proof that they were mortals.
When I was in the university and learning logic from my professor, in every logic book, in every university around the world the same Aristotelian syllogism is being taught. “Man is mortal. Socrates is a man. Therefore Socrates is mortal.” When I was taught that syllogism for the first time I stood up and I said, “Wait, I may be the exception. Up to now I have been the exception, why not tomorrow? About Socrates I accept the syllogism is true, because he is dead. What about me? What about you, what about all these people who are living? They have not died yet.”
It is just experiencing death, people dying, in disgust, in misery, in suffering, in all kinds of pain, old age; that gives you the fear of death. Nobody has known the death of an enlightened man. How beautifully he dies, how joyously he dies. The moment of his death is of tremendous luminosity, silence, as if joy is radiating from every pore of his being. Those who are near him, those who have been fortunate to be near him will be simply surprised that death is far more glorious than life has ever been. This kind of death happens only to people who have lived totally, without fear. Who have lived orgasmically, without bothering about idiots what they are saying. They know nothing about it and they go on saying about it.
The fear of death will be the simplest out of the three. You have to solve the first two. Then you tell the person that death is not the end of life. If you meditate deeply, and reach to your innermost center, you will suddenly find an eternal life current. The bodies, there have been many. There have been many forms to your being, but you are just the same. It has not to be just a belief; it has to be made their experience.
So remember one thing: your therapy groups should not be ordinary therapy. Just somehow whitewashing and giving a man a feeling that he has learned something, that he has experienced something, and after a week or two he is the same. There is not a single person in the whole world who is totally psychoanalysed. There are thousands of psychoanalysts doing psychoanalysis. Not a single case they have been able to complete yet. For the simple reason because they have nothing to do with meditation. Without meditation you can go on painting on the surface, but the inner reality remains the same. My therapists have to introduce meditation as the very center of therapy. Everything else should revolve around it. Then we have made therapy something really valuable. Then it is not only the need of those who are sick, or of those who are somehow mentally unbalanced, or of those who feel fears, jealousies, violence… This is a negative part of therapy. Our therapies should be that we give the person his individuality back, that we give him integrity, crystallisation, so that he never fears death. Once the fear of death disappears, all other fears are very small; they will follow it, they will simply disappear. We have to teach people how to live totally and wholly, against the teachings of all the religions. They teach renounce, I teach rejoice.