The best government is no government

Fri, 14 March 1985 00:00:00 GMT
Book Title:
Osho - From Darkness to Light
Chapter #:
pm in Lao Tzu Grove
Archive Code:
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Question 1:



No government.

The very idea of somebody governing somebody else is inhuman.

Government is a game, the ugliest and the dirtiest game in the world.

But there are people in the lowest state of consciousness who enjoy it: these are the politicians. The only joy of a politician is to govern, to be in power, to enslave people The greatest desire of all those who have reached to the peaks of consciousness has been the dream that one day we can get rid of all governments. That day will be the greatest in the whole history - past, present, future - of man, because getting rid of all governments will mean destroying the ugliest game, the game the politicians have been playing for centuries.

They have made man just a chess piece, and they have created so much fear, fear that without government there will be anarchy, disorder, chaos ... everything will be destroyed. And the strangest thing is that we go on believing this nonsense.

Just look at the past five thousand years. Can you conceive that if there was no government at all in the world things would have been worse? In what way? In three thousand years, five thousand wars have been fought. Do you think more would have been possible without government - that more chaos was possible, more crime was possible?

What have these governments done? They have not done anything for the people except exploit them, exploit their fear, and set them against each other. A continuity of war somewhere or other on the earth is almost an absolute necessity for politicians to exist.

Adolf Hitler, in his autobiography, has many insights; and he is a man worth understanding because he is the purest politician - I mean, the dirtiest. He says that war is an absolute necessity if you want to remain in power. If you cannot create war people start thinking of you as nobody. Only in wartime are heroes born.

He is right. Just think of all your heroes - what would they be without wars? Who would Alexander the Great be? Who would Napoleon Bonaparte be? Who would Winston Churchill be? Who would Benito Mussolini be? Joseph Stalin? Adolf Hitler himself?

These people have become heroes of great importance. The bigger the war the bigger the heroes it creates.

Hitler says that if you cannot create war then at least continue to propagate the idea that war is coming. Never leave people in peace, because when they are in peace, you are nobody. They don't need you; your very purpose is not there. They need you when there is danger. Create danger. If there is not real danger, at least create the climate of a false danger.

The American fear of the Russians, the Russian fear of the Americans - it is nothing but a game of the politicians. People themselves are exactly the same all over the world - they don't want to be killed in wars and they don't want to kill others in wars. But the politician cannot exist without wars.

Hence I call it the dirtiest game - because it depends on human blood, the bloodshed of millions of innocent people.

When I say no government is the best government I know perfectly well that perhaps it will not ever be possible. But it is better to have dreams that are impossible but are of some higher consciousness, of beauty, love. Perhaps if the idea goes on existing, some day we may come close to it. We may not be able to achieve it in its totality - hence I say, the closest to no government is one government, which is not impossible. And after one government, no government becomes very possible.

Try to understand the idea. When I say one government, then politics loses much juice. When there are so many presidents in the world and so many prime ministers and kings and queens, and everybody is trying to prove himself the greatest, the game has some juice. When there is one government then it becomes functional; there is nobody against it.

The whole joy of politics is in "the enemy." When there is no enemy, then you are just working like the Red Cross Society or the organization of post offices or railways or aeroplanes. Do you know who is the head of the organization that runs the railway trains in America? There is no need, he is just a functional head.

And when there is one government we can make it a Rotary Club. There is no need for anybody to remain a president for four or five years. A few weeks will be enough; enjoy four weeks and then rotate. There is no problem in it. So every part of the world is represented; sometimes their person is the president. But by the time the world comes to know, he is no longer the president. And when it is a Rotary Club people lose that desire, the will to power.

One government means that nations disappear.

In fact there is no validity for nations; they are simply a calamity.

In Ethiopia people are dying of starvation; in Europe they are throwing foodstuff into the ocean because they have so much that if they continue to keep it then prices in the market will go down; and prices have to be kept going up. The only way is to get rid of it. So much is being thrown away that just to throw it in the ocean one hundred thousand dollars are needed - just for the labor of throwing it into the ocean.

This is a mad world. Ethiopia is so close to Europe - for one hundred thousand dollars all that stuff could have reached Ethiopia. And it is not a small amount: three million tons of tomatoes and eight million tons of other foodstuff.

Can you believe human beings can be so inhuman when people are simply starving and dying just because there is no food in their country? For four years there have been no rains; even the moisture in the air has disappeared. People don't have water to drink - they are dying of thirst. And you are throwing food in the ocean!

This is what your nations have been doing.

In India people have been dying of starvation .... Russia is one of the friends of India, and they have a treaty for almost the next fifty years, sixty years, that they will never fight against each other. And anybody who is an enemy of India will be an enemy of Russia, or the enemy of Russia will be the enemy of India. This way they have lived for thirty years.

But all these treaties, all these contracts, are one thing; reality is totally different. Yes, if there is a war, Russia will help; but if Indians are dying of starvation it has nothing to do with the friendship.

What kind of friendship is this?

In Russia they were burning wheat instead of coal in their trains because they had surplus crops of wheat, and coal was costlier than wheat. India could have given them as much coal as they wanted, and India needed wheat. But that is none of the concern of anybody else, that is your business; you take care of your country.

Nations are creating walls between human beings. Otherwise the earth is still capable of supporting beautiful, healthy life. And science has provided all the means so that there is no need for anybody to die of starvation, of sickness. There is a possibility that life can be extended to at least three hundred years avery easily. In fact scientific research shows that intrinsically there is no reason why a man should die, because his body is made in such a way that it renews itself continuously. If it can renew itself for seventy years, why not seven hundred years? Or why not seven thousand years?

It is only a question of time - the mechanism is there. Perhaps there is need of a little scientific help to reprogram the inner system of the body. It has been programmed by nature for seventy years; the program can be changed, and the body will follow any program that is given to it. But nations will not allow this to happen.

It is strange, in India right now thousands of people have been killed in Punjab - just a political game, and people don't mean anything to politicians.

The Sikhs in Punjab want their state to become an independent nation. I don't see anything wrong in it. If that's what Sikhs want, then who are you to prevent them? What right have you got to prevent them? If they want to become an independent nation they should be welcomed into the community of nations. India should not create trouble for them. That's what India has been doing:

killing thousands of Sikhs. Why? - because India should remain united. But why? What is the value of remaining united, for what?

The same game has been going on a long time. In 1930 Mohammed Ali Jinnah said that Mohammedans want an independent nation. Mahatma Gandhi continued in every direct and indirect way to spread the idea that India should remain united. But why? As if unity in itself has some value!

Just look behind it. India should remain united because in unity is power - and in power is the whole of politics. The bigger the country is, the more powerful it is against the neighbors; and the people who rule the country, they are also more powerful.

Of course Jinnah was a very cunning and clever politician - just the right person to oppose Mahatma Gandhi: otherwise it would have been very difficult for Mohammedans to get a separate country.

Gandhi's whole politics was, that the country remain one: Hindus and Mohammedans are all brothers. But these are just words of absolute meaninglessness ....

When Gandhi's own son became converted to Mohammedanism he was so angry that he abandoned him. What happened to Hindu-Mohammedan brotherhood? If they are brothers then there is no conversion. Just from this house the son has gone to another house - there is no problem. Gandhi should have welcomed it. But he forgot; for a moment the real Hindu came in, the politician's mask slipped. He never saw the face of his own son again.

He instructed his family that when he died, his eldest son should not put fire to his body - which is the traditional way in India: the eldest son puts fire when the father dies.

Haridas was his eldest son, but he had become a Mohammedan. Now, if Hindus and Mohammedans are brothers, Haridas has done really a very Gandhian act; Gandhi should have been happy. But no, Haridas was not allowed .... He was following at the end of the procession of Mahatma Gandhi after he was shot.

All his brothers, the leaders, the president, the prime minister, the cabinet ministers - they were all with the body of Mahatma Gandhi. Haridas was just in the crowd, tears in his eyes, nobody even bothering about him, that he is the eldest son. He was standing by the side at the funeral when the fire was given, tears in his eyes. But Gandhi was very strict in his orders: "He should not be allowed even to touch my dead body." Haridas simply touched the ground and disappeared into the crowd.

Why did Gandhi want India united? One thing was certain: Hindus are the majority in India, so if India remains united, Hindus will remain in power. That is obvious. A Hindu will be the prime minister, a Hindu will be the president; Hindus will be in every high post. Mohammedans cannot compete.

In a democracy the majority decide who is to rule, and that's why Jinnah insisted, "We cannot live with Hindus because to live with Hindus means to live under their rule. We can never be in power."

That was his politics: to be in power.

He wanted to be in power, and with Hindus it was impossible. Gandhi was a very clever politician, so clever that he almost deceived the whole world into thinking he was a religious man. He tried to bribe Jinnah too. He made an offer to Jinnah: "You will be the first president of India - that is my promise."

Jinnah said, "I can understand, and I trust your word - I may be the first president, but then what?

I cannot remain in power forever; the majority can throw me out any day. And even if I am the president I am not really in power, because I don't have the support of the majority of the country.

Just you are making me the president; you are the king-maker, you are still higher than me." Without the country's support a single man's vote is making him the president!

"But," he said, "it is not a question of my being president; what about my people? Once you are dead, I am dead; Hindus will be ruling forever - and we cannot accept this. We are descendants of rulers, we have ruled over India for two thousand years; before the Britishers we were the rulers.

Now after the Britishers we are not going to be slaves. We need a separate country."

The Britishers were playing their game too. They had no interest in Hindus or Mohammedans or Sikhs. Their interest was, if these three go on fighting among themselves, they remain in power.

Their simple plea was there - a very British type of politics, very nice. Even if they kill you, they kill you with a smile. Their politics was simple. They said, "We are ready to leave the country, we are ready to make you independent, but first you decide: to whom are we to leave the country? In whose hands? You are not united. We cannot leave the country in chaos."

Just understand the politician's strategy: "We cannot leave you in chaos, in disorder. You first get yourself together."

Even in 1930 Sikhs were asking for a separate, independent country. Their leader was Master Tarasingh, a very fanatic Sikh and a very powerful politician. Kashmiris also wanted to have their own country. They have a very strong politician, Sheikh Abdullah, who has ruled Kashmir for almost half a century.

He wanted Kashmir to be a separate country. He said, "We don't want to be part of Pakistan, because in Pakistan we will be lost, and we have the paradise of the earth in our hands; we don't want this paradise to be lost, to fall into anybody's hands. We don't want to be with India either, because wherever we are we will be a minority and we will be lost." His politics was to remain independent; then he would be in power.

If I had been there in 1930 I would have said, "Give Mohammedans what they are wanting - that is their right, to rule themselves." And if in 1930 Pakistan was given to Mohammedans, there would have been no violence at all, because there was no violence in 1930, no riots; Hindus and Mohammedans were not killing each other.

This whole thing came into being between 1930 and 1947 because Jinnah and Gandhi went on

fighting more and more, and the fight started spreading to the masses. Jinnah started provoking Mohammedans against Hindus, and the British government went on supporting Jinnah in every possible way so that he remained strong, even though he was just a minority.

In seventeen years everything changed. So much violence happened - and this whole violence happened because of this messiah of non-violence, Mahatma Gandhi.

It would have been so simple to give Mohammedans the parts of the country where they were in the majority. They were not asking anything irrational. They don't want to live with you - who are you to force them to live with you? Their religion is different, their language is different, their culture is different. In every possible way they are a separate entity, they have their own individuality. Allow them.

And if in 1930 it had been allowed, there would have been no violence; Pakistan and India would have remained friendly. It is because of Mahatma Gandhi that it was not possible to separate in a friendly way. The violence became necessary.

India was partitioned. It was absolutely clear to anybody who had eyes that you could not stop it.

Gandhi had said, "I will allow India to be divided only over my corpse" - but even that could not prevent it. India was divided, and he forgot completely that it was being divided without his corpse.

Politicians don't have good memories. They cannot afford good memories. They have to go on forgetting their own promises.

And after the partition there was even more violence, because once both the countries were separate, with their own armies, and the British government was gone ... there was more violence because Mohammedans were moving to Pakistan. It must have been the greatest movement since Moses moved from Egypt - but that was not this big.

Millions of Mohammedans moved from India to Pakistan. But it was not any easy thing - trains were burned, people were killed. To pass thousands of miles and enter Pakistan was not easy because those thousands of miles were Hindu territory. And the same was happening in Pakistan on even a bigger scale - because Hindus are not very efficient in killing; they have not killed for at least five thousand years. It needs a certain expertise; Mohammedans are far more expert.

In Pakistan they completely demolished the Hindus - completely! Only a very few people could escape. In India many Mohammedans were killed but still India remains the biggest Mohammedan country in the world. Again, the same politics ....

Mohammedans claim their religion says that every Mohammedan is allowed to marry four wives."

To interfere with their religion means danger, immediate riots all over the country, so you cannot.

Although the constitution says that one man can marry only one woman, Mohammedans continue to marry four women. Nobody can prevent them. And this is their political game.

You can understand: if four men marry one woman they can produce only one child in a year. Four men or forty men, that does not matter - if the woman is one, only one child will be produced.

Perhaps with one man it is easier; four men may mess around and kill the child. But one man and four women - then there can be four children very easily, there is no problem. While Hindus will be producing only one child, Mohammedans will be producing four; they are increasing four times every year.

It is politics - in the name of religion. Again Mohammedans will be in a position to ask for another country - and they will ask. Sikhs have been asking for almost half a century. They should have been given one, there is no problem in it. Why insist on the unity of the country? When the people themselves don't want to remain united, who are you to force unity? And can unity be forced?

Now thousands of Sikhs have been killed, thousands of Hindus have been killed, Indira Gandhi has been assassinated - and Punjab is in the same situation. Not a single bit has changed: Punjab is still asking to be independent; the Indian army is sitting all over Punjab. How long can you do that, and for what purpose?

If somebody asks me, I will say, "Give it to them, it is their country; if they want to be independent, let them be independent. If Bengalis want to be independent, let them be independent also. If South India wants to be independent, let it be independent also."

Naturally, the leaders of India will say that means India will disappear. So what! - let it disappear. I don't see any problem. What is the problem? Nothing disappears: people will be there in Pakistan, people will be there in Punjab, people will be there in Bengal, people will be in South India - just the name, India, will disappear. Let it disappear!

People will be living - but you are more interested in names than in people, in living people. People don't mean anything, names mean much. But it is not the name - it is a question of the leaders who are leaders of a great country becoming leaders of small states, small countries with no power.

The same is the situation of those who are asking for their own countries, to be independent. If Sikhs are asking, what is the problem? The problem is that Punjab was a big state; then half of Punjab went to Pakistan because half of Punjab had a Mohammedan majority, so Punjab became halved. Then this continuous quarrel started .... While there were Mohammedans, there was no conflict between Hindus and Sikhs. They were one - against Mohammedans. You see the game of politics?

The enemy of the enemy is my friend. But when the enemy disappears, what happens to the friend?

Sikhs and Hindus were friends, brothers; they had never thought of being separate because of the Mohammedans: they had to fight the Mohammedans.

Once half of Punjab had gone to Pakistan, suddenly they became aware that "we are Hindus and you are Sikhs" - and the fight started. Then Punjab had to be divided again into two states, into Punjab and Hari Ana. Hari Ana became a Hindu state - the majority of its population is Hindu - and in Punjab Sikhs became the majority of the population.

It is now one fourth of the original Punjab, but there is a danger, because now the Sikhs are in the majority, and the Sikh leaders think, "Unless we are an independent country .... We have no chance to become leaders of the whole of India; we will always remain a very small minority, a small state of no importance." Their leaders want to be important.

My idea is: let every city become a country just like us, just as we are a country - because in what category can we be put? We are not a city, we are not a state; the only category that is left is, a country! A very small country - but unless proved otherwise, we are a country. And nobody has raised any objection.

If each city becomes a country that will spoil the whole game of the politicians. Then K.D. will be the president of Rajneeshpuram, and there will be millions of presidents and prime ministers - they will lose all meaning.

Hence the continuous effort to keep countries big: the bigger the country, the bigger the politician; the smaller the country, the smaller the politician. I want the country to be so small that the politician is of no significance at all. And in that way, democracy can be direct - as it was in Greece in the days of Socrates.

Greece was constituted of city democracies. Each city was a state independent in itself; hence direct democracy was possible. Indirect democracy is almost no democracy at all. You choose a person for four or five years to be the president. Now, for four or five years what guarantee do you have that this man is not going to go nuts? Most probably he is already nuts; otherwise why should he bother to become president of your country. Can't he find anything better to do?

This very desire to go to the White House is so stupid - you can just paint your house white. Be in the White House!

I really did it .... In my university, by coincidence the gate of the university was a pentagon - five roads meeting at the gate. And one of my very beloved professors, Professor S.S. Roy, lived just by the side of the gate.

I told him, "You are missing a great opportunity."

He said, "What?"

I said, "You don't be worried - I will do something."

He said, "What?"

I said, "Let me first do it" - so I collected four or five students and painted his house white.

He said, "But what are you doing?"

I said, "Now this is the White House on the Pentagon!"

He said, "What will people think?"

I said, "Nothing! You haven't yet seen the signboard." He ran out, looked at the signboard: "White House, Pentagon, Washington," and said, "What is this 'Washington'?"

I said, "That is the name of your garden! And from today we are going to call you, 'President, sir.'"

And in the class we started to call him not "professor" but "president", and he would say, "Don't do that to me, because each time it reminds me of my house that you have destroyed. My wife is angry because other women are laughing at her. And even buses and trucks stop on the road to look at the board, 'White House, Pentagon, Washington.' And certainly, it is a pentagon."

I said, "This is easier than trying to become the president. This is so easy - to paint your house."

In Athens, direct democracy was possible. Direct democracy means you don't choose any representatives - because how can a person represent millions of people? It is impossible. Who can represent me? Except myself, nobody can represent me. And when somebody represents millions of people, certainly he is not representing anybody except himself. You are being befooled. Indirect democracy is simply a deception.

Athens had direct democracy - no representatives. All Athenians gathered whenever there was any problem to be discussed; all the citizens would gather and they would vote for each single issue directly. They would raise their hands for or against; this is the way it was done. That was direct and, in fact, democratic. And everybody knew there was no question of somebody cheating you, some Nixon creating a Watergate - no problem.

In Athens, when a problem was there, the whole problem was told to you; then you voted and you decided, and you could see that the city had decided for or against. Once it was decided then the whole city followed it because the majority had decided; then the minority had to be in support of it.

There were no political parties in Athens - there was no need. Political parties are only needed in an indirect democracy. In a direct democracy everybody has his own idea and he is independent, able to represent his idea, to vote for himself; he can propose his idea, and explain his idea to the people. Perhaps he can convince them, perhaps they will be ready to support him - but everybody is free.

Only in a small commune is direct democracy possible. And direct democracy is the only democracy.

Indirect democracy is just a trick. You think you are choosing your representative - do you know his mind? Have you ever thought whether your mind and his mind are similar? And with how many minds can he be similar?

Now, Ronald Reagan - whom does he represent except himself? I don't think he can represent even his wife - and you all know that no husband represents his wife. And this man has got a swollen head now because he represents the whole of America. Certainly that is not possible at all. But he has the power to prove that he represents it: he can go to war and drag the whole country to war.

He is preparing for war and can drag the whole country to war.

And of course if he wants to become the greatest hero in the world he should not miss this chance, because after the third world war there is not going to be any fourth war; this is his last chance to become a hero. Of course nobody will be left there to write your history, but at least existence will remember: the ruined earth will remember, the dead bodies of all human beings, animals, birds - they will remember. The dead trees, the whole earth will become one Big Muddy Ranch - that will remember.

He should not lose this chance. And what has he to lose? He is old enough, anyway he is going to die; and when you die, whether the world lives afterwards or not, that is none of your concern. This is a good chance. He has lived enough, he is going to die - why not take the whole world with him?

Nobody represents you, nobody can represent you. If Rajiv Gandhi asks me, I will tell him the only solution is to give Punjab independence. Make it a country - and not grudgingly, reluctantly, but joyously. Celebrate the birth of a new country. The whole of India should celebrate the birth. And if other parts of India want to be free, let them be free. Let India, the word, disappear; it doesn't matter. But let the people live - and let them live the way they want to live. Don't force anything on anybody.

I can understand how difficult it is .... If somebody imposes something on me .... For example, I lived in Maharashtra, but I would not like anybody to impose the language of the Maharashtrians on me - no, not while I am alive! I simply hate it. I cannot conceive how Maharashtrians can be making loving conversations to each other. They look always as if they are fighting, their language is such - harsh. It hits you! It has no roundness anywhere.

Every word has many corners, cutting you. And they talk so loudly ... I have never seen two Maharashtrians talking in a human way - I am not saying whispering, just talking. No, they are always shouting as if they are addressing thousands of people.

I had one professor who used to teach me psychology; he was a Maharashtrian. I was his only student. Just because of him nobody joined the psychology department. I joined just out of compassion - for no other reason, because I knew much more psychology than he knew.

I had just joined because the poor fellow, for three years, had not had a single student, and he was running after students saying, "Please join!" because he was afraid that if nobody joins, sooner or later he is going to be thrown out. He was head of the department of psychology and earning a good salary - and all would be gone.

Almost with tears in his eyes he told me "Only you can help me - I don't think anybody else has the guts to join."

I said, "You should have told me before, there is no problem. Just one thing you have to promise."

He said, "What?"

I said, "You have to keep silent, because I don't want to be addressed as if you are addressing a meeting of two or three thousand people without a microphone. That I cannot bear, that is too much.

Moreover I love to sleep in classes. So be silent. I will join your class; you can go out whenever you want, you can do whatsoever you want. You can come, go or .... Don't disturb me, and don't try to teach me psychology - because I know enough, more than enough. I am really fed up with psychology. If you agree to this condition ...."

He said, "I can agree, but once in a while when the vice-chancellor comes, just passes by in the corridor, I have to speak, otherwise he will ...."

I said, "No, at that time I will speak so he will hear that somebody is speaking; you listen."

He said, "This is strange! If he looks from the window?"

I said, "Then I will be asking a question - but you are not to answer. That question will be so long that he cannot stand there. Let him stand there - my question will continue - but you are not to speak." His name was Professor Dandekar. I said, "Dandekar, if you agree with all these conditions, I am your student, you are my professor." He had to agree, but it was very difficult for him, and he was boiling within.

I said to him, "If you want to talk, just tell me - I will go out, and then you can do whatsoever you want. It is your classroom: you can speak to the walls, you can speak to the tables .... And anyway, even when I am here what difference does it make - whether out of a hundred chairs, one chair is filled or not? And I am always asleep; I don't waste time. In the night I read and in the day I sleep. I come to the university to sleep."

For a while I lived in Bombay, and then I lived in Poona. Poona is the very capital of the Maharashtrians. But it is unbelievable .... Now, if somebody wanted me to learn the Maharashtrian language as my national language, I would leave that nation but I would not learn that language.

And that is nothing: if you go into South India then you will come across real monsters - Tamil, Telugu, Kannad, Malayalam, and it seems you have come onto another planet! The way they are talking - how have they developed their languages? But if these people want to be ... and if they are not willing to accept Hindi as their national language, I can understand: why should they accept it?

Hindi is my mother tongue; I love it, but why should a Maharashtrian learn Hindi or a Telugu or a Tamil learn Hindi? For them Hindi is as foreign as any other language. Chinese would be almost the same as Hindi. Why should it be imposed on them?

These are really different nations, forcibly joined together. Let them be free, and soon you will see .... Make Punjab independent and you will see that the Sikhs start fighting amongst themselves - there are Sikh sects whose differences are not yet in focus because they are all together against the Hindus. Just let the Hindus be removed and you will see.

There is a certain group of Sikhs who dress in blue, and always keep a very special kind of sword.

The ordinary sword is long, thin; their sword is short but very thick and very heavy. Just one hit on your neck and you and your head are separated.

They are the most ferocious Sikhs. Once the Sikhs have an independent country .... They are called, neelah Sikhs, 'blue Sikhs,' because of their blue dress - and they are really fanatic people. Soon they will say, "Either we will dominate ... otherwise we want an independent country." Then ordinary Sikhs will understand how difficult it is.

It has already happened .... When Pakistan was divided, half of the country was on one side of India, and the other half of the country on the other side of India; in the middle was India. Pakistan was a strange country - in two parts, divided by almost two thousand miles.

But politicians are politicians. Jinnah was asking for a one-hundred-mile-broad corridor from one part of Pakistan to the other part - going through India! Even to the Britishers it looked too much.

This was so strange: one hundred miles broad so their railways and their people and their airplanes and their army could pass just through the middle of India - and they would cut India in two. Then India would ask for a corridor - because how could they be joined?

This would go on and on. Everybody could see that this would be very difficult to solve; this would be Bertrand Russell's paradox. So the idea was dropped.

Half of Bengal in the East, Punjab, Sindh and Baluchistan in the West - these two became Pakistan; and it became clear that sooner or later they would fight. They were both Mohammedan and they fought against India to achieve Pakistan but once Pakistan was achieved, Bengalis started saying that they wanted an independent country, Bangladesh, on their own, because they speak Bangla.

They said, "The Punjabis, the Sindhis and the Baluchistanis speak Urdu and we have no communication. If we remain together we will always be ruled by those with whom we have no connection - we are even two thousand miles distant and our cultures are different. We cannot be ruled by Punjabis."

And Bengalis are almost like the French; they think they have the best culture in the world, the best language in the world - everything they have is the best. Only when I visited Calcutta for the first time did I come to know that I am an Indian. They are Bengalis; they don't consider themselves Indians. Indians are far below them - they are Bengalis!

So immediately after Jinnah died, Pakistan separated into two. With the same ugliness they fought, they killed - now they were Mohammedans killing Mohammedans. But these were Punjabi Mohammedans, and those were Bengali Mohammedans. Thousands of people were unnecessarily killed, and finally they had to concede - because how can you rule somebody who does not want to be ruled by you?

If those people are ready to die, then sooner or later you will have to retreat. What is the point? And Sikhs are people who cannot budge an inch. They would rather die completely than surrender to an idea which is not their idea. Their politicians are continuously provoking them; every day there is violence.

And just a few days ago they killed the high priest, their own high priest, because the high priest was a liberal type of man; he wanted some kind of negotiation. But what negotiation can there be? Either Punjab remains part of India or it becomes an independent country - what negotiation? Because he said he wanted some negotiations with Rajiv Gandhi, Sikhs killed him - and to kill their own high priest means they are determined.

Sikhs have a tradition that anybody who goes against the Sikh religion, if he is a Sikh, then the high command of the Sikh community can call him to the Golden Temple in Amritsar to punish him. Now they have called two persons to the temple; one is a cabinet minister in Rajiv Gandhi's government - a Sikh - and the second is the president of India; he is also a Sikh.

These two persons should come to the temple to receive punishment, and the punishment can be anything. You can be beaten, you can be told to go naked around the temple, your face can be painted black, you can be put on a donkey and moved around the town - any punishment, because "both of you Sikhs are in power and yet millions of Sikhs are living in terror and thousands have died, and their temple has been profaned." This is the first time that the military has entered the Golden Temple.

In three hundred years the British government never dared. In two thousand years of Mohammedan rule, Mohammedans never dared. No army could enter the Golden Temple. It had become conventionally accepted that the Golden Temple had its own authority, a kind of sovereignty in its own territory.

The assassination of Indira Gandhi was not accidental. She was the first one who forced the army into the Golden Temple. This was provoking the Sikhs, and if they got mad and assassinated her, it was not just accidental: she had asked for it.

To me it seems all absolutely idiotic. Let them be free. They want to be free, and freedom is everybody's right.

My understanding is that the whole world slowly slowly should be divided into smaller and smaller units so every unit becomes a direct democracy. Then these direct democracies choose a Rotary Club for the whole world. But that Rotary Club will be functional, utilitarian, not based on a lust for a power. And these people will be continually changed. So this will be one government, the closest to no government.

The final dream should remain no government. In fact there is no need for any government - just a little understanding in people. What is the need for governments?

Just look at our commune: what government do we need? No crime is committed. We have a city judge but not a single case has yet appeared in three years; and it is not going to appear. We have the police but we don't need the police for the commune, because in the commune nobody is doing anything for which the police are required.

We need the police for the outsiders, the Oregonian idiots. We don't want to be interfered with by anybody. We want to live on our own, and we ARE ... peacefully, silently, lovingly, joyously. We don't need any government.

Do you know what function our lord mayor has to perform? Nothing! just bumming around. And nobody knows who the council members are. They are all doing their jobs but there is no point; just once in a while their council meets - nobody even takes note when their council meets or what they decide.

If people have just a little understanding that they are not to interfere with each other, then for the community council ... things like the post office, hospital, roads, electricity - all these things will be there; they have to make arrangements for them. Of course when there are so any people living together, somebody has to be responsible for all these things.

So I don't think that with governments disappearing there will be chaos, no. With governments disappearing there will arise intelligence, understanding.

Because of these governments, people have not been intelligent; they have always looked up to the government, felt that the government is going to do everything for them. All responsibilities are thrown on the government.

When there is no government and you feel for the first time that you are responsible, whatever you do, there is nobody you can throw your responsibility upon - that triggers your intelligence. I know it is an impossible dream to have no government in the world, but if you know moments of silence, peace, intelligence, it does not seem so impossible. If you ask me, to me it seems to be very simple and very practical.

Governments have been only a nuisance, nothing else.

You can look at any single problem - for example, they will say that if we dissolve the courts and the police and the jails then there will be crime everywhere.

This is not right. I have seen communities, aboriginal, primitive communities, where no court exists, no police exists, no jail exists - no crime either. Yes, once in a while something happens, but those people are so innocent that they go on foot hundreds of miles to the nearest town where they can go to the court and report.

And do you know who goes to report? The man who has committed the crime! Somebody has murdered someone in a rage: he himself goes to the court to say that it has happened, and "I am ready for any punishment because in my community there is no court, no punishment. They told me to come here."

It looks like a miracle that a murderer should come himself, hundreds of miles, to report that he has murdered. But this is how human beings should be. If you have done something wrong and you feel that it is wrong, then you should be ready to accept the consequence of it. Trying to hide it is becoming phony; you are losing your authenticity.

Now, this murderer who comes to the court is a far greater sage than your saints - just in the very act of coming to the court to declare that he is a murderer. In fact it is such a difficulty ....

One of my friends was a judge in Raipur; Raipur is the nearest big town to a big aboriginal area, Bastar. The judge said to me that it is very difficult when somebody comes with such strength, with such clarity, with such pride, with nothing to hide. He has committed something wrong and he is ready for the consequence.

He said to me that it feels wrong to punish this man; it seems he should be rewarded. Our police have not caught him; nobody would have even heard about the murder, because for hundreds of miles there are no trains, no roads, no schools, no hospitals. Nobody would have even heard if this man himself had not confessed.

And this is not a hocus-pocus confession like a Catholic does every Sunday before the priest. That is not a confession; you are really consoling your own guilty conscience.

This man comes to the court and says, "I have committed a murder." The judge told me, "Many times it has happened that we have to ask a man, 'You have to produce evidence; otherwise we cannot punish you.'"

Once, a man said, "But evidence - there is none. If evidence is needed, I will have to go back and find somebody, if somebody had seen us ... because we were both alone when we were fighting" - they live in the jungles. "I will have to go back and find if I can get evidence. But when I am saying myself that I have committed murder, what is the need of evidence?"

But the problem of the judge is that without eyewitnesses, evidence, arguments from this side and that side, legal procedures - all that hullabaloo that goes on for years, and then this man has to be convicted, or most probably, he will be released .... But what to do with this man who has no evidence, who has no advocate on his side?

The judge asked him, "Would you like to have an advocate appointed by the government to fight for you?"

But the man said, "For what? I am guilty. What more can he prove? He is going to prove me guilty?

I am guilty, I have murdered. I myself am the eyewitness."

And these governments say, without government there will be chaos.

All chaos is because of government.

Their courts go on increasing, their jails go on increasing, their armies go on increasing, criminals go on increasing, crime goes on increasing - and still nobody compares the crime rate and the increase of the judges, courts, prisons. They go hand in hand.

My own feeling is, if you dissolve all your courts, all your advocates, even if a few thefts happen, a few murders happen, it will be less costly than this whole business of courts, advocates, juries. It will be less costly just in terms of pure economics.

And I don't see that if people have a little understanding there will be stealing. Stealing is there because people are not helping each other, people are not sharing with each other. People go on living as if the whole world is against them and they are against the whole world. Once this attitude is dissolved and you start feeling more in tune with people around you, crime will disappear. And the greatest crime, war, will disappear. All other crimes are so tiny, not worth mentioning. If wars disappear, we will have arrived at a certain stage of maturity, responsibility.

This is my vision for your commune. This is actually what we are doing here. And if three thousand people can live this way, I don't see any reason why the whole world cannot live in the same way.

They are the same kind of people; they just need a little bit of understanding - which you have got, and they are missing.

Three thousand people living in peace and silence, and enjoying, and without any problem, is enough proof.

But politicians would like to destroy us because we are a proof against their whole history; we are a proof against their whole future too. They would like to demolish us completely so they can go on saying that without government there will be chaos, that without wars the world cannot exist, that without nations, how is it possible to exist?

Now, here we already exist without any nations. Who bothers whether you are an Italian or a German or an Indian? Nobody even questions; people don't even know who is who. I was thinking to publish a who's who for the commune, because people don't know. Sometimes they may even be boyfriends and girlfriends and they don't know. They come to know only when the other does not understand their language; otherwise there is no problem. And even with language people are managing perfectly well. I don't know English but I manage. I am surprised myself because English is such an unscientific language and I am not acquainted with it in any way, but when you have to say something, when you have something to say, then the language follows. If you have just a little bit of an acquaintance with the words they follow, they fall in line.

All languages are here, all nations are here, all religions are here - and nobody is taking any notice of any differences.

Rajneeshpuram is simply one single nation, and the only nation which represents the whole world.

But the politicians are often offended by our existence, and I can understand why they are offended.

If we are right - and we are right - then they are in the wrong, and they have always been in the wrong. But nobody has given them a solid proof of their wrongness.

Prince Kropotkin talked about anarchy, no government; but just argument won't help. I love Kropotkin, his idea is right, but he should have managed .... And he was a prince in Russia, he had every possibility to create a commune without government. He never did it. I think he himself suspected that he could not succeed. To write a book is one thing; to write life is totally different.

We are writing life here.

If we succeed then we are the hope of the whole humanity.

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