Practicing virtue

Create a new path for your energy

"Practicing virtue is like perspiration. Your unconscious habits evaporate through it. So not doing bad is actually doing good." - Osho

Don’t become obsessive about anything. Recognize it, become aware, and do something just the opposite. If you feel anger is your problem, don’t be too attentive towards anger; become more compassionate, become more loving. Because if you become too much concerned about anger, where will you put the energy that will be released if you don’t become angry? Create a path for the energy to move. It is the same energy. When you have compassion it is the same energy as it was in anger. Now it is positive, then it was negative. Then it was destructive, now it is creative. But it is the same energy—anger becomes compassion. So before you want to change anger you will have to channelise, you will have to make new channels towards compassion.

Find out your chief fault and create new pathways in your being. If you are a miser then just crying about it and talking about it is not going to help. Then start sharing. Whatsoever you can share, share. Do something that becomes a breakthrough, do something that goes against your past, do something that you have never done before. It is possible that you are angry because you don’t know how to have compassion. It is possible you are a miser because you don’t know how to share.

Be positive—do something so the energy starts moving and flowing. Then by and by it will be taken away from anger. Become conscious but don’t be obsessed.

You will have to make a distinction between these two things because the human mind is such that it goes on misinterpreting. When Buddha says become mindful, he is not saying become obsessed, he is not saying continuously think of anger. Because if you continuously think of anger you will create more and more angry situations for yourself. Be conscious, but there is no need to contemplate. Be conscious, but there is no need to be too much concerned. Take a note of it and then do something which changes your energy pattern. That’s what he means when he says practise goodness.

Practicing virtue is like perspiration. Your unconscious habits evaporate through it. So not doing bad is actually doing good.

Buddha says: the force of retribution will gradually exhaust itself as a disease gradually loses its baneful influence when the patient perspires.

Somebody has taken too much alcohol. What do you do? You can give him a hot bath or you can put him in a sauna bath. If he can perspire the alcohol will go with his perspiration.

Practicing virtue is like perspiration. Your unconscious habits evaporate through it. So not doing bad is actually doing good. Don’t be negatively interested, be positive. If you just sit and think about all the wrongs that you have done, by and by thinking too much about wrongs that you have done, you will be giving too much food to them. To give attention is to give food, to give attention means to play with the wound.

Take note, be mindful, meditate, but don’t play with the wound. Otherwise, you will be making the wound more alive. It will start bleeding. So don’t become too much concerned about your small things—they are small.
All errors are just ordinary. What extraordinary sin can you commit? All the sins have been committed already; you cannot find a new sin—it is very difficult. It is almost impossible to be original about sin. For millions of years, people have committed everything that can be committed. Can you find anything new? It is impossible—and what can you commit?

Don’t call them sin because the very word has become contaminated, it has a condemnation in it. Buddha simply calls them “misdemeanors,” ungraceful acts. His term is beautiful—ungraceful acts, acts in which you behaved in an ungraceful way. You became angry or you said something which was not graceful, or you did something which was not graceful—just misdemeanors.

Abridged from Finding your own way by Osho




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