“Who is a loud person? And why is a certain person loud in the first place? The person who feels deep down inferior is always loud. He is afraid that if he is not loud you will see his weakness, if he is not loud you may be able to see his inferiority; if he is not loud he may be exposed. By being loud he creates smoke around himself: he hides behind his loudness.
“Alfred Adler’s insight is right when he says that all politicians basically suffer from inferiority complexes. Unless somebody suffers from an inferiority complex he will not go into politics. Politics is loud, very loud, very noisy and very aggressive. The inferior person tries to prove that he is not inferior. He wants to hide his inferiority by becoming a prime minister, by becoming a president, by having much money, by conquering the world.
“Alexander the Great must have suffered from a greater inferiority complex than anybody else; otherwise who bothers to conquer the world? When he was coming to India – that was the last part of the world which was still not conquered by him – he met a tremendously beautiful man, Diogenes. And Diogenes asked him, ‘Why are you bothering to conquer the world? Why not conquer yourself?’
“Alexander laughed – a shallow laugh. He said, ‘What you are saying is true, but right now I cannot stop. I have to finish what I have decided to do. First I have to conquer the world and then I will do what you are saying to me.’
“Diogenes said, ‘There will be no time left then – the world is vast. By the time you have conquered it, your life will have slipped out of your hands.’
“But he did not listen.
“And actually that’s what happened: he could not reach back to his home. He died on the way back from India; no time to reach back to his home, what to say about reaching back to one’s own center, the real home? His whole life was lost in proving: ‘I am a great conqueror.’ But why should one try to prove it? People always try to prove something which they feel they are missing.[…]
“They are empty, they have nothing. You cannot learn anything from them. On the contrary they will distract your mind. They will give their stupid ideas to you. They will advise you and guide you. They will advise you and guide you. They have reached nowhere, they know nothing, but they will pretend that they are wise, they will pretend that they have arrived. They will pretend all kinds of things.[…]
“Seek the company of the humble, of the simple, of the silent ones, of the non-political, of the non-aggressive, and you may learn much. But it is always learned in the company of the innocent. Yes, you can learn much more by playing with children than by being with a politician. You can learn much more even by being with animals or trees than by being with the so-called rich.
“And they can easily distract you because you are not yet centered. Ambitions are infectious. Avoid ambitious people, otherwise something of their fever is bound to infect you, is bound to affect you.”
Abridged from Osho, Guida Spirituale, Talk #5
Osho Times International/courtesy Osho International Foundation/www.osho.com