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Joy: The Happiness That Comes from Within [Paperback]

Osho
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Book Description

Jan. 20 2009

In this seventh book in the popular Insights for a New Way of Living series, Osho examines the nature of joy from a radically different perspective. With an artful mix of compassion and humor, Osho shows us that joy is the essence of life, that even unhappiness has its root in joy. Osho encourages us to accept joy by being grateful to be alive and for the challenges and opportunities in life, and by finding the good in all that we have--rather than setting conditions or demands for happiness. By embracing joy, one comes closer to a true, peaceful, and balanced state.

Joy: The Happiness That Comes From Within includes an original 80-minute talk by Osho on DVD. This visual component enables the reader to experience the direct wisdom and humor of Osho straight from the source.


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About the Author

Osho is one of the most provocative and inspiring spiritual teachers of the twentieth century. Known for his revolutionary contribution to the science of inner transformation, the influence of his teachings continues to grow, reaching seekers of all ages in virtually every country of the world. He is the author of many books, including Love, Freedom, Aloneness; The Book of Secrets; and Innocence, Knowledge, and Wonder.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

WHAT IS HAPPINESS?




Happiness has nothing to do with success, happiness has nothing to do with ambition, happiness has nothing to do with money, power, prestige. Happiness has something to do with your consiousness, not with your character.

IT DEPENDS ON YOU

What is happiness? It depends on you, on your state of consciousness or unconsciousness, whether you are asleep or awake. There is one famous maxim of Murphy. He says there are two types of people: one who always divides humanity into two types, and the other, who doesn’t divide humanity at all. I belong to the first type: Humanity can be divided into two types, the sleeping ones and the awakened ones—and, of course, a small group in between.

Happiness will depend on where you are in your consciousness. If you are asleep, then pleasure is happiness. Pleasure means sensation, trying to achieve something through the body that is not possible to achieve through the body—forcing the body to achieve something it is not capable of. People are trying, in every possible way, to achieve happiness through the body.

The body can give you only momentary pleasures, and each pleasure is balanced by pain in the same amount, to the same degree. Each pleasure is followed by its opposite because the body exists in the world of duality. Just as the day is followed by night and death is followed by life and life is followed by death; it is a vicious circle. Your pleasure will be followed by pain, your pain will be followed by pleasure. But you will never be at ease. When you are in a state of pleasure you will be afraid that you are going to lose it, and that fear will poison it. And when you are lost in pain, of course, you will be in suffering and you will make every possible effort to get out of it—only to fall back into it again.

Buddha calls this the wheel of birth and death. We go on moving with this wheel, clinging to the wheel … and the wheel moves on. Sometimes pleasure comes up and sometimes pain comes up, but we are crushed between these two rocks.

But the sleeping person knows nothing else. He knows only a few sensations of the body—food, sex; this is his world. He goes on moving between these two. These are the two ends of his body: food and sex. If he represses sex he becomes addicted to food; if he represses food he becomes addicted to sex. Energy goes on moving like a pendulum. And whatever you call pleasure is, at the most, just relief from a tense state.

Sexual energy gathers, accumulates; you become tense and heavy and you want to release it. To the man who is asleep, sexuality is nothing but a relief, like a good sneeze. It gives him nothing but a certain relief—a tension was there, now it is no longer there. But it will accumulate again. Food gives you only a little taste on the tongue; it is not much to live for. But many people are living only to eat; there are very few people who eat to live.

The story of Columbus is well known. It was a long trip. For three months they saw nothing but water. Then one day Columbus looked out at the horizon and saw trees. And if you think Columbus was happy to see trees, you should have seen his dog!

This is the world of pleasure. The dog can be forgiven, but you cannot be forgiven.

During their first date, the young man, looking for ways to have a good time, asked the young lady if she would like to go bowling. She replied that she did not care to go bowling. He then suggested a movie, but she answered that she did not care for them. While trying to think of something else he offered her a cigarette, which she declined. He then asked if she would like to dance and drink at the new disco. She again declined by saying she did not care for those things.

In desperation he asked her to come to his apartment for a night of lovemaking. To his surprise she happily agreed, kissed him passionately, and said, “You see, you don’t need any of those other things to have a good time!”

What we call “happiness” depends on the person. To the sleeping person, pleasurable sensations are happiness. The sleeping person lives from one pleasure to another pleasure. He is just rushing from one sensation to another sensation. He lives for small thrills; his life is very superficial. It has no depth, it has no quality. He lives in the world of quantity.

Then there are people who are in between, who are neither asleep nor awake, who are just in a limbo, a little bit asleep, a little bit awake. You sometimes have that experience in the early morning—still sleepy, but you can’t say you are asleep because you can hear the noise in the house, your partner preparing tea, the noise of the kettle or the children getting ready to go to school. You can hear these things, but still you are not awake. Vaguely, dimly, these noises reach you, as if there is a great distance between you and all that is happening around you. It feels as if it is still part of a dream. It is not part of a dream, but you are in a state of in-between.

The same happens when you start meditating. The nonmeditator sleeps, dreams; the meditator starts moving away from sleep toward awakening, is in a transitory state. Then happiness has a totally different meaning: It becomes more of a quality, less of a quantity; it is more psychological, less physiological. The meditator enjoys music more, enjoys poetry more, enjoys creating something. These people enjoy nature, its beauty. They enjoy silence, they enjoy what they had never enjoyed before, and this is far more lasting. Even if the music stops, something lingers on in you.

And it is not a relief. The difference between pleasure and this quality of happiness is that it is not a relief, it is an enrichment. You become more full, you start overflowing. While you listen to good music, something is triggered in your being, a harmony arises in you—you become musical. Or dancing, suddenly you forget your body; your body becomes weightless. The grip of gravity over you is lost. Suddenly you are in a different space: The ego is not so solid, the dancer melts and merges into the dance.




Now is the only time and here is the only space. And then suddenly the whole sky drops into you. This is bliss. This is real happiness.

This is far higher, far deeper, than the pleasure you gain from food or sex. This has a depth. But this is also not the ultimate. The ultimate happens only when you are fully awake, when you are a buddha, when all sleep is gone and all dreaming is gone—when your whole being is full of light, when there is no darkness within you. All darkness has disappeared and with that darkness, the ego is gone. All tensions have disappeared, all anguish, all anxiety. You are in a state of total contentment. You live in the present; no past, no future anymore. You are utterly here now. This moment is all. Now is the only time and here is the only space. And then suddenly the whole sky drops into you. This is bliss. This is real happiness.

Seek bliss; it is your birthright. Don’t remain lost in the jungle of pleasures; rise a little higher. Reach to happiness and then to bliss. Pleasure is animal, happiness is human, bliss is divine. Pleasure binds you, it is a bondage, it chains you. Happiness gives you a little more rope, a little bit of freedom, but only a little bit. Bliss is absolute freedom. You start moving upward; it gives you wings. You are no longer part of the gross earth; you become part of the sky. You become light, you become joy.

Pleasure is dependent on others. Happiness is not so dependent on others, but still it is separate from you. Bliss is not dependent, it is not separate either; it is your very being, it is your very nature.

FROM THE SURFACE TO THE CENTER

Gautam Buddha has said:

There is pleasure and there is bliss.

Forgo the first to possess the second.

Meditate over it as deeply as possible, because it contains one of the most fundamental truths. These four words will have to be understood, pondered over: the first is pleasure; the second, happiness; the third is joy; and the fourth is bliss.

Pleasure is physical, physiological. Pleasure is the most superficial thing in life; it is titillation. It can be sexual, it can be of other senses, it can become an obsession with food, but it is rooted in the body. The body is your periphery, your circumference; it is not your center. And to live on the circumference is to live at the mercy of all kinds of things that go on happening around you. The man who seeks pleasure remains at the mercy of accidents. It is like the waves in the ocean; they are at the mercy of the winds. When strong winds come, the waves are there; when the winds disappear, the waves disappear. They don’t have an independent existence, they are dependent—and anything that is dependent on something outside of itself brings bondage.

Pleasure is dependent on the other. If you love a woman, if that is your pleasure, then that woman becomes your master. If you love a man—if that is your pleasure and you feel unhappy, in despair, sad, without him—then you have created bondage for yourself. You have created a prison, you are no longer in freedom. If you are a seeker after money and power, then you will be dependent on money and power. The man who goes on accumulating money, if it is his pleasure to have more and more money, will become more and more miserable—because the more he has, the more he wants, and the more he has, the more he is afraid to lose it.

It is a double-edged sword: wanting more is the first edge of the sword. The more you demand, the more you desire, the more you feel yourself lacking something—the more hollow, empty, you appear to yourself. And the other edge of the sword is that the more you have, the more you are afraid it can be taken away. ...

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Osho does it again Feb. 29 2004
Format:Paperback
In "Joy--The Happiness that Comes From Within" Osho proves himself once again to fit squarely in the tradition of cultural physicians past and present (Nietzsche, Colin Wilson, Erich Fromm, Laing) and clearly states that society as it exists is little more than a mass neurosis of fear, culturally glorified narcissism, and above all, fear of openness. Perhaps the only problem with his work is that it is being marketed in a culture directly inimical to it's message--as a Westerner, I have trouble inculcating his on-the-mark attacks simply because I am a Westerner. Osho has written the same book countless times, and his message never becomes less relevant for the repetition. He is a poet, philosopher and sage all at the same time, and his constant exhortation to 'drop the ego' could be characterized as the central message in his work. The only thing I take issue with in his work is his persistent dismissal of culture's irrevocable (and sometimes irreversible) influence on the individual. If one could simply 'drop out' of this mass neurosis a lot more intelligent people would have done it by now. Nonetheless, his work is invaluable and I am certain that one day Osho's name will be up there with the greats of both literature, eastern thought and creativity.
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0 of 4 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Rajneesh (Osho) Sufi??? March 7 2004
Format:Paperback
These posthumous books published by Rajneesh's people are regularly described or categorized as "Sufi" or "Sufism." Was Rajnessh a Sufi? I don't know of any of his commune devotees at "Rajneesh puram" who would have called themselves Sufis.
Let's be honest and leave the Sufism to Sufis.
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Amazon.com: 4.9 out of 5 stars  20 reviews
39 of 40 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best book on Happiness/Joy I've ever read June 8 2005
By Paul W. - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
This is the first Osho book I read. Before this I had avoided his books entirely, because the media had widely publicised that this Guru had 93 Rolls-Royces in his collection and portrayed him as nothing more than a charlatan in disguise. But a close friend had praised the insights gained from his books and I felt that I had to give his teachings a fair hearing.

As a Guru, he was far from being a cave-dweller; instead this former Professor of Philosophy (University of Jabalpur,1958-66) was more of a modern rebel, and this may understandably disappoint some folks on their expectations of what a Guru should be. But his answer on the 93 Rolls-Royces and other fineries he had, was that he simply used what was available. He was a practical man indeed!

In reading this book, I was amazed to find page after page of 'bang on-target' penetrating insights, peppered with sharp observations of human nature and ocassionally punctuated with entertaining parables told with wry humour. Read this book if you want to know the difference between pleasure, happiness, joy and bliss.

Some brief excerpts from the book:-

'..asking for more is what our mind is - a constant asking for more. It makes no difference how much you have, the mind will go on asking for more.'

'..mind is a daydreaming faculty. Unless you go beyond the mind, you will continue to daydream. The mind cannot exist in the present. To be in the present is to be without mind.'

'..mind is a mechanism to create unhappiness. If you drop the mind, suddenly you become happy - for no reason at all.'

'..madmen and mystics have something similar..both are out of the mind. The madman has fallen below it, the mystic has gone beyond it.'

'..unless you start living in the present, you will not be able to forget and forgive the past. Awareness cannot be in the past and cannot be in the future. Awareness knows only the present.'

'..as you feel the bliss of being in the present, you will stop doing this stupid thing that everybody goes on doing. You will stop going into the past. You will not have to forget and forgive, it will simply disappear of its own accord.'

This book is filled with similar gems of wisdom and I strongly recommend this book if you wish to comprehend the elusive nature of happiness/joy. Notwithstanding that he was a controversial Guru when he was alive (1931-1990), the contents of this book will still take your understanding way beyond what the current crop of pop psychology books can offer on this subject.

And then, when you are ready for the next level of mental/spiritual evolution, these 2 books are must-haves:-

'Talks With Ramana Maharshi' by Robert Powell (ISBN: 1878019007)

'I Am That' by Nisargadatta Maharaj (ISBN: 0893860220)
29 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Osho does it again Feb. 29 2004
By J from NY - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
In "Joy--The Happiness that Comes From Within" Osho proves himself once again to fit squarely in the tradition of cultural physicians past and present (Nietzsche, Colin Wilson, Erich Fromm, Laing) and clearly states that society as it exists is little more than a mass neurosis of fear, culturally glorified narcissism, and above all, fear of openness. Perhaps the only problem with his work is that it is being marketed in a culture directly inimical to it's message--as a Westerner, I have trouble inculcating his on-the-mark attacks simply because I am a Westerner. Osho has written the same book countless times, and his message never becomes less relevant for the repetition. He is a poet, philosopher and sage all at the same time, and his constant exhortation to 'drop the ego' could be characterized as the central message in his work. The only thing I take issue with in his work is his persistent dismissal of culture's irrevocable (and sometimes irreversible) influence on the individual. If one could simply 'drop out' of this mass neurosis a lot more intelligent people would have done it by now. Nonetheless, his work is invaluable and I am certain that one day Osho's name will be up there with the greats of both literature, eastern thought and creativity.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars In a very difficult time in my life, this is the book that made the difference July 16 2011
By Tomas A. Maly - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Going through a really challenging and stressful time in my life, I've searched high and low for all sorts of books on meditation, Tibetan Buddhism, mysticism, etc and I find myself so incredibly turned off by the deep intellectual Buddhist philosophy. I need something to give me ease, to help me release the tension, and most Buddhist texts, at least right now, are too heavy for me and essentially useless. Perhaps I've needed that foundation of ease/joy before I can delve into the deeper contemplations.

Osho speaks in such clarity and ease that during my own inner stress/struggle, his book alone was the only one that I found myself glued to, underlining, feeling like the knots in my life and perception were unraveling all at once, immediately.

Joy is not something you can pursue. The more I pursued meditation, Buddhism, etc the harder I tried, the worse I felt. Joy and ease aren't things you can pursue directly. Perhaps what I have been looking for are the tools for letting go. It's something that everyone should have access to, right now, without years of training, rituals, practice, etc that is not practical for most people. Joy is what happens when you let go of the past and forget the future, and just bask in the pleasure of right here and now. When you learn to just take things easy, you let yourself feel love inside yourself and that love can build up into an ambition and clarity/focus to tackle even the most stressful situations in life.

Joy shouldn't take years of mind training, meditation, philosophical insight, years of mystical preliminaries and extensive mystical rituals. Kudos to those who have that time, but I have a family, a job, a home business, a big move, and lots of life changes going on right now, so I need instant relief. Maybe someday I'll have the time to focus on that, but now, as so much is up in the air, I need something simple, something relaxing, to give me that ease and joy. This book does that.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars something the therapists can't offer June 14 2007
By crocabull - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
He gives wisdom (not advice) to questions like "is this all there is? life seems meaningless" and "why do i feel so much pain in letting go of the things that are causing me misery?"

well! osho is the first to give me a peace of mind on these matters. if you just don't see the point to anything, maybe this book is for you.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars From the author of "Choosing Joy at Work" May 29 2008
By Roger J. Wyer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Osho is a goofball - and I say that with love! You can't read this book without smiling, even when he's kicking you around for acting the fool. Osho talks a lot about why people choose to be miserable. That's a good place to begin if you're looking for joy. Of course every minute you're looking for joy, Osho is yelling at you to STOP LOOKING!

Osho has no trouble taking on the Constitution on one page and Jesus on the next - ie there are no keep-off-the-grass issues here! The writing challenges us to drop our stuff - to get out of the box - to claim the joy that is our birthright. And he does it in a playful way!

Do not give this book to that person in your life who you think needs a little joy. Save it for someone who will really appreciate it - someone who doesn't take themself too seriously!
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