Audio for Sammasati part 7 (click to play or right click to download)

Now he sometimes talks so stupidly that it is amazing that he has been thought to be a great master. He is saying: If correct mindfulness…which means there is a possibility of incorrect mindfulness. There is no possibility of incorrect mindfulness. Mindfulness is simply awareness. It is the wrong word for awareness, but it actually means awareness.

Buddha has used a word which has been translated in all these languages: Chinese, and Japanese, and Korean. That word is sammasati. Samma means right, and sati means remembering. Sammasati has been translated as correct mindfulness. But in the case of sammasati, it can be said that this is not a contradiction.

Sammasati is Pali for the Sanskrit words, samyak smriti. From language to language, small nuances go on changing. Samyak smriti is the root word. And samyak smriti means balanced remembrance. In Pali, it becomes sammasati. There it also means right remembrance. Remembrance can be wrong. There are two kinds of remembrance, right and wrong.

Right remembrance is concerned with your own being, when you remember yourself. When you are aware of yourself that is sammasati. When you remember other things that is not right remembrance. You may remember a thousand and one things, but if you don’t remember yourself, your remembrance is wrong.

But when it is translated as mindfulness, then the whole word has taken on a new meaning. There cannot be any wrong mindfulness. All mindfulness is right. And mindfulness doesn’t mean anything to do with the mind; it simply means you are conscious, alert, aware. If you are walking mindfully, it means you are walking with consciousness. If I am moving my hand mindfully, it means I am moving it knowingly, not just like a robot.

If correct mindfulness is present at all times, and the attitude of fear for birth and death doesn’t waver, then, over long days and months, what was unfamiliar will naturally become familiar, and what was stale will naturally become fresh.

What he is saying is so stupid that even to call it stupid does not seem right; he needs something more powerful. He is saying something which can be perfectly right for an intellectual, but it is not right as an experience. And you can see it if you are just a little bit aware.

First, whenever one becomes aware, one becomes aware for twenty-four hours. It is not a question of becoming aware and then losing it, and then becoming aware again – it is not like that.

Awareness is just like your heartbeat.

From Osho, The Great Zen Master Ta Hui, Chapter 6

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