Do real problems truly exist? Or are all problems just mere mind games?
All problems are created out of unawareness. Unawareness creates problems and it would not be wrong to say that unawareness is the only problem, really. When we become alert and aware, problems disappear but they are not repressed. If we repress them, we will never become aware because a person who represses his problems will be afraid of becoming aware.
When we are unconscious, we create problems. Unconsciousness has its own language that is, the language of problems. It is like groping in the darkness; we stumble upon one thing or another. Darkness or unconsciousness only understands the language of problems; it has no solutions. Even if a solution is given to us, in our unconsciousness, we will make a problem out of it.
Unconsciousness understands in its own way. That's why the Buddhas have always been misunderstood. That's a natural fate and cannot be avoided. To understand Him will require great awareness on our part because He lives in a world where there are no problems, where there are only solutions and answers but no questions. On the other hand, we live in a world where there are only questions and no answers.
It appears as though the human problem is a theoretical problem, but the problem is always existential. It is not theoretical, it is not a puzzle to be solved by the intellect. Rather, it is a river that can be crossed only through existential means. Whenever the intellect tries to solve it, it only goes around and around and around the problem.
The problem remains untouched by the intellect, primarily because the intellect is the source of the problem. To be more exact, the intellect is the problem. The human mind can never solve problems; it can only create them. Just like leaves grow on trees, problems grow in the mind. The intellect always promises to solve them, but each solution only creates more problems.
The first thing to be understood is that the intellect can create problems and it can create solutions to those problems, but nothing really is achieved out of it. Everything continues in its own way, untouched.
Osho explains, "By 'life', I mean your total being and by 'intellect', I mean the part of your being that speculates. If you go deeply within, you will see that the thinking part of you is a very non-essential part of your being. Life goes on without any help from your mind. You are born: you grow, you become a youth, you fall in love, you die. Everything happens beyond the mind. The mind is not involved at all in the deeper circumstances of life."
Every problem comes from deep inside us, someplace where the mind cannot penetrate. That's why any intellectual approach is irrelevant. Psychologists say that our life comes from sources that are below the mind. Our life is unconscious and our mind is conscious. And the unconscious part is nine times greater than the conscious part. The conscious part is not functioning for twenty-four hours a day, but the unconscious is. Even when we are asleep, the unconscious is functioning. It is capable of doing everything more efficiently than when our conscious mind is present.
That's why sleep is needed. The real need is not for sleep itself, but for the absence of our conscious mind. We must be absent for some time so that our non-voluntary mechanisms can work. 'We' are a hindrance. With our conscious mind, we do not help the flow of life; we just create obstacles. We need to spend one third of our life totally submerged in the unconscious or we cannot live.
The unconscious can live without the conscious mind, but the conscious mind cannot live without the unconscious. If we are deprived of sleep even for a single week, we will go mad. This madness happens because our conscious mind has been interfering with the natural flow of life constantly for one week, with no gaps in between for the unconscious to move to the very source of life and attain sustenance.
Even when we are not asleep, our conscious mind is not working constantly. It is only there during the moments when we need it, otherwise only the unconscious is working. This conscious mind tries to solve existential problems but it cannot do that, it is impossible. The conscious mind is not meant for that. Of course, it can go on speculating, it can verbalize, it can create systems, it can create logical inferences, it can appear to have solved the problem, but the problem remains the same; it has not even been touched.
Life should be tackled through living, not through speculation, not through intellectual theorizing. Life should be known existentially. This is the miracle: if we know life existentially, then there are no problems. It is not that existential living solves our problems but when we live life totally, there are no problems.
For example, take any problem, say fear. Fear is a basic problem, what can the mind do about it? Fear is there because death is there. Our intellect can analyze the problem: what fear is. But even if we know what fear is, it makes no difference. We know what the fear is about; that death is there, that we are going to come to an end. Death is always there! Analysis cannot do anything at all about it.
We can create theories around the problem but no theory will solve it for us. At the most it can make adjustments so that we can go on. The fear remains, but somehow through some theory, we train ourselves to neglect it. But the fear will be there and its poison will continue to flow in us.
Everyone has to face death; it is something that has to be faced sooner or later. No one can help us and we all have to encounter it. It will not help at all to close our eyes and go on speculating about it. It will just create new problems.
The existential approach is to move deeply into the problem, to live it. Be in it. The existential approach means to face life's problems. Once you face a problem, it is no longer there. Trying to escape from it is what creates the problem. Once we have looked into any problem deeply, in a relaxed state, it is finished forever.
Osho says, "Don't force awareness on yourself in any way. Let it grow. Become more relaxed, calm, quiet and accepting. One has to accept all, the good and the bad, success and failure, love and hate - one has to accept. In that acceptance, relaxation happens. Awareness is nothing but the fragrance of relaxation. It is the flowering of let-go. Then problems disappear and they disappear forever."