The "Stop exercise" [of the Russian mystic, Gurdjieff] was tremendously significant, perhaps one of the greatest contributions to the modern world – and the modern world is not even aware of it.
Gurdjieff would tell his disciples to be engaged in all kinds of activities: somebody is digging in the garden, somebody is cutting wood, somebody is preparing food, somebody is cleaning the floor.... All kinds of activities are going on, with the one condition that when he says "Stop!" then wherever you are, in whatsoever posture you are, you stop dead. You are not to be cunning, because then the whole point of the exercise is lost.
You will be surprised that such a simple exercise gives you such a release of awareness. Neither Buddha nor Patanjali nor Mahavira were aware of it, that such a simple exercise...it is not complex at all.
When you become just a statue, you are not even allowed to blink an eye; you stay exactly as you are at the moment you hear the word "Stop!" It simply means stop and nothing else. You will be surprised that you suddenly become a frozen statue – and in that state you can see yourself transparently.
You are constantly engaged in activity – and the mind's activity is associated with the activity of the body. You cannot separate them, so when the body completely stops, of course immediately the mind also stops, then and there. You can see the body, frozen, as if it is somebody else's body; you can see the mind, suddenly unmoving, because it has lost its association with the body in movement.
It is a simple psychological law of association that was discovered by another Russian, Pavlov. Gurdjieff knew it long before Pavlov, but he was not interested in psychology so he never worked it out that way. Gurdjieff was doing far higher work. He found a simple way of stopping the mind. In the East people have been trying for centuries to concentrate the mind, to visualize it, to stop it – and Gurdjieff found a way through physiology. But it was not his discovery; he had just found what [a certain group of ] nomads had been doing all along.
Gurdjieff would shout "Stop!" and everybody would freeze. When the body suddenly freezes, the mind feels a little weird: What happened? – because the mind has no association with the frozen body; it is just shocked. They are in cooperation, in a deep harmony, moving together. Now the body has completely frozen, what is the mind supposed to do? Where can it go? For a moment there is a complete silence; and even a single moment of complete silence is enough to give you the taste of meditation.
Osho: "From Personality to Individuality"
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