From longing to devotion

By Martyn Rule


Martyn Rule WebsiteThe experience of being alive can at times be very fragile and humbling. Being all too human is a journey of both becoming and dissolving, both, whilst we are here.


I´m reminded of the Rumi poem:

Does Sunset sometimes look like the sun is coming up

Do you know what a faithful love is like?

You´re crying, you say you´ve burned yourself  but

Can you think of anyone who is not hazy with smoke?


Those lines are filled with a tenderness that many of us, as I´m sure we know, have seen and felt deeply on our rich and varied journey into ourselves, between and amongst each other and especially for our loved ones.


Consider perhaps our deepest longing and then add some. Being in a place of longing is not then a place of ready-made mentality, formula or strategy, fortunately.

Fortunate because longing opens a vast new vista, that allows a fresh way of being to emerge. A longing for wholeness or a longing to be held by the submission of longing whilst being free of an object or indeed that subject, oneself. This then begins to open to devotion, what the Sufi describes as annihilation or ´Faná.. the dissolution of the self.


So perhaps longing  and devotion are connected by a unifying thread. Is it possible that the call of devotion is just that, a way of embracing longing in humility freed of separation from oneself, from life and able then to give, feel and receive love beyond measure?


I´ve been here in DIMA Mallorca which is also an Osho inspired community, open to friends and lovers of this experience. Having recently returned from the motherland of all devotees, India, I landed amongst friends here both old and new. I happen to be 56 and amongst the older Pune tribe who met Osho. To clarify, when I heard Osho recently speak on devotion he described the journey from student to disciple to devotee.. and significantly not to assume any spiritual vanity or presume spiritual status. From I – it (prayer) to I – thou (Guru) to dissolution of the self.


Now as chance or mercy would have it and uniquely made possible by the legacy which Osho left us, his meditations are then powerful approaches to begin to clear the ground for this longing-prayer-devotion to promote and discover the student-disciple-devotee of the inner world.


Many years ago (only a metaphor in truth as that now is here too) the reality of devotion to Osho and his work and playful view of it began in me as a simply curious student of the inner world. I´m still hesitant to describe the effect of Namaste-ing Osho with the hands in prayer mudra, at each and every appearance. However, I can truly say that gesture of surrender was wholly effortless and thankful. It is the signature of his work as play that we enter the most arduous and exposing challenges in our lives because of and through his example.


Friends here at DIMA Mallorca welcome me with open hearts and arms and they do that as effortlessly as that original prayer mudra which maintains this commitment to the healing-game through the effects of an unspoken yet felt devotion.


The results are ongoing. Once a sense of devotion begins to spread then this has direct implications on the quality of interactions and change at the heart of community. DIMA retains that direct commitment, even devotion to the sense of fellowship and community that supports, inspires and provokes the best of Osho´s vision. Love. Devotion. Surrender.


What Osho says of devotion is sublime and pragmatic when applied to the work. If you have ever been touched by something or someone beyond your sense of self then hearing these words may well give this journey even more depth and relevance. So that what is overlooked, rushed and transient becomes unlocked and released with the fragrance of a resonating heart. You know well already, dear reader, that a life lived in tenderness through reverence to a loved one is plenty already to invite the divine and to devotion. You may well have been blessed to be on the receiving end of another´s gratefulness.


The origin of the word devotion in Latin is ´Vovere ´, which means to make a promise to the Gods. And what promise or devotion is more capable of returning the gods their laughter (which the Greeks believed happens when we laugh in mirth) than the celebration of community..´Many hands making light work´….


Osho says ..

“If you stop at what is visible, devotion will never be born in you. You must yearn .. for the sound of the invisible approaching. Your senses have to become ecstatic… they have to be thrilled with the joy of that which is beyond all your senses.

You begin to perceive the invisible through some hitherto unfamiliar medium and that medium is devotion.”