A contaminated act

You are passing down a street when you come across an umbrella dropped unaware by a person walking ahead of you. You pick up the umbrella and hand it to the owner without any fuss. You don’t look around for a press reporter or a photographer to report to the public your great act of selfless service to a fellow traveler. You don’t even expect a “thank you” from the person concerned, nor hope for any results in the future. This is what I call a natural and spontaneous act.

But if the owner of the umbrella goes his way without thanking you, and if you feel even slightly hurt thinking how ungrateful the man is, then your action is no more natural and spontaneous, it is not without motive. Maybe you were not aware of your expectation of a thank you when you picked up the umbrella and handed it to him, but it was very much there in your unconscious. An expectation even of a thank you destroys the spontaneity and purity of action; it is no more free of attachment to its fruits. Then it is a contaminated act, contaminated with the desire for result.

Osho in Krishna: The man and his philosophy 

Acharya Rajneesh (1931-1990), known later as Osho, was an Indian godman, philosopher, mystic and founder of the Rajneesh movement. He was viewed as a controversial religious leader during his life. He rejected institutional religions, insisting that spiritual experience could not be organised into any one system of religious dogma. He advocated meditation and taught a unique form called dynamic meditation. Rejecting traditional ascetic practices, he asked his followers to live fully in the world but without attachment to it. Pic courtesy: https://www.sannyas.wiki/