Osho Says “Fame is Foolish”

The following excerpt is from the third volume of the series of discourses titled “Discipline of Transcendence”. These discourses are on the 42 Sutras of Buddha. I heard the first discourse in the morning today during my walk. The two excerpts below show how hankering after fame is foolish !!! 😁

To read the entire transcript – You are always on the Funeral Pyre.

Foolish Human Mind – looking for fame ?

“….Ordinarily the mind is a businessman.

The old father was dying and his family was gathered around the bed waiting for him to take his last breath. As the old man wheezed away life, his oldest son said to one and all, “When Papa goes, if it’s tonight, we can bury him early tomorrow from the big funeral parlor downtown. Since the funeral will be early in the morning, we won’t be able to get in touch with too many people, so we won’t need a lot of cars or the big room, and it won’t cost too much.”

His daughter was standing there and she said to the brother, “You know, death to me is a very personal thing. Why do we have to call a bunch of strangers together to witness such a sad scene – if you two boys are there and I’m there, who needs anyone else?”

The youngest son looked at them both and said, “I couldn’t agree with you more.

In fact, why do we need the expense of taking Papa to an undertaker? He is dying in the house, let’s bury him from the house.”

All of a sudden the old man’s eyes flew wide open. He looked at his three children and shouted, “Give me my pants!”

They answered in a chorus, “Papa, you are a very sick man. Where do you want to go?”

He replied, “Give me my pants. I’ll walk to the cemetery – I am a businessman.”

The whole life people simply go on saving, saving – for what? The life is slipping by; each moment a precious moment is gone and it cannot be reclaimed. Buddha says: Don’t waste it in foolish things.

Fame is foolish, it is pointless, meaningless. Even if the whole world knows you, how does it make you richer? How does it make your life more blissful? How does it help you to be more understanding? to be more aware? to be more alert? to be more alive?


That’s how life is: each moment burning. You are always on the funeral pyre because each moment death is coming closer, each moment you are less alive, more dead. So before this whole opportunity is lost, Buddha says, attain to a state of no-self – then there will be no death. And then there will be no misery.

And then there will be no constant hankering for fame, power, prestige.

In fact, the more empty you are within, the more you seek fame; it is a sort of substitute. The more poor you are within, the more you seek riches; it is a substitute to somehow stuff yourself with something.

I observe every day: people come to me, and whenever they have a problem with their love, they immediately start eating too much. Whenever they feel that their love is in a crisis, they are not being loved, or, they are not able to love, something has blocked their love-energy, they immediately start stuffing themselves with things, they go on eating. Why? What are they doing with the food? They feel empty – that emptiness makes them afraid. They have to somehow stuff it with food.

If you are feeling happy inside, you don’t bother about fame;only unhappy people bother about fame. Who bothers whether anybody knows you or not if you know yourself? If you know yourself who you are then there is no need. But when you don’t know who you are you would like everybody to know – everybody to know who you are. “

What are you trying to stuff your life with ? Fame ? Food ? Money ? or something else ?

Osho says – “If you are feeling happy inside, you don’t bother about fame;only unhappy people bother about fame. “….. Ponder over that !

Thank You Master 🙏🏿

2 thoughts on “Osho Says “Fame is Foolish””

  1. Interesting about Osho and fame. Made me reflect on what I crave in life. Consider possessions, which, like food, if I interpret Osho right, are substitutes for feelings of emptiness inside.

    I have too many useless possessions, mostly inherited from a family of hoarders, but also things I’ve acquired that have outlived their usefulness to me. My challenge is to divest myself of possessions, to create voids in places formerly filled with stuff.

    For almost-elderly people like me (I’ll be 70 this month) there is the inevitable accumulation of irretrievably broken or rusty things that are too heavy or bulky to dispose of easily.

    To seek fame may be futile, in the short term, but to be known for providing useful service while alive may be a goal worth considering.

    • Not just you Katharine, all of us struggle with “stuff”. I guess what Osho meant was doing things for the sake of fame alone is foolish. If fame happens along the way, and you remain unaffected by it, its ok. Buddha was, is and will always be famous, but it didn’t bother him at all.

      We are doing decluttering round 3 as I write this reply :):).


Leave a Reply