Chidananda, there has been a great change in human consciousness during the past one thousand years. But the change is such that you can see it only when a real situation arises, and man responds in a totally different way than he has ever responded before. For example, there has never been so much awareness about peace, and there has never been so much antagonism towards war.
In fact, war was always respected in the past, and peace was never thought of as anything more than a gap between two wars -- nothing positive, just a preparation for a new war.
You need some time. A war destroys so much that you cannot immediately start another war; hence a time of peace is needed. This is not authentic peace, it is simply cold war.
The war and all its components continue underground, preparing for a more dangerous and a more destructive war in the future.
The whole past has been respectful of the warrior. It is only just now in these few past years that war has become a dirty four-letter word, and peace has become for the first time a desire and a longing of the very heart of humanity.
As far as I am concerned, war has become almost impossible.
The impossibility of war is based on two fundamentals. One is a human consciousness about the futility of war. Nobody can claim that it is something beautiful, something honorable, something which gives dignity to humanity. Slowly, slowly it has penetrated into human consciousness that war takes away all dignity. It makes man fall below animals, because even animals don't kill their own species; lions don't kill other lions, deer don't kill other deer. It is only man who kills other human beings. It is a disqualification, not a great quality to be honored.
So the first thing is that war has fallen into disrespect, into utter futility, stupidity; it has lost all its past glory and significance.
Secondly, the war materials -- atomic energy and nuclear weapons -- have reached to such a point that they have made war impossible. Unless the whole of humanity suddenly goes mad, war is impossible, because the only purpose of war was to defeat the enemy, the only purpose was to be victorious. Victory was the end. But now, with nuclear weapons, there is no defeat, no victory; no one is defeated, no one becomes victorious, all are dead. The whole life on the planet simply disappears.
What Gautam Buddha, Mahavira, Jesus, Zarathustra and the great teachers of humanity have not been able to convince man about, has been done by nuclear weapons. Now war means only one thing: a global suicide. And no man is ready to commit suicide. In fact, the closer comes the possibility of a third world war, the deeper becomes the urge to live -- and to live more consciously, and to live more lovingly, and to live more intensely. A longing for life itself has never been so intense and so profound as it is today.
I predict the impossibility of any war in the future. And this is going to change a thousand and one things in life, because if war becomes impossible, sooner or later the piling up of nuclear weapons will become an exercise in stupidity.
In the Soviet Union, under the leadership of Gorbachev, they have stopped creating nuclear weapons one-sidedly. They have tried hard to negotiate with America that they should both stop together. They said, "We go on creating out of the fear that you are creating; you go on creating out of the fear that we are creating -- we can stop together."
But Ronald Reagan is Adolf Hitler number one -- a very fascist mind.
Gorbachev has taken a step so revolutionary and so intelligent and so courageous and so risky that one cannot conceive of him just as a politician. He is a man of deep understanding. He stopped creating more nuclear weapons almost one year ago, and he has been cutting the budget every moment, because he can see the possibility of what I am saying: that there is not going to be any war, because you cannot convince five billion people to die for no purpose. Gorbachev has made history by taking the step single- handedly, but America is still piling up....
The American masses should rise up in a rebellious uproar against their own government, because now even Ronald Reagan cannot say, "We have to create because the Soviet Union is creating." The Soviet Union has opened its doors to world scientists to come and examine their plants and be satisfied, because Ronald Reagan was lying continuously saying "Gorbachev has not stopped creating nuclear weapons; he is simply deceiving us."
Now the whole world is convinced that the Soviet Union is no longer interested in destroying human life.
All the intelligent people of the world should protest against this American fascist attitude, and force America to stop bringing death to this beautiful planet. And I think, as the century comes to its end, there is bound to be a great protest from all over the world.
America has to be put right -- it is already late!
I am reminded of George Gurdjieff. He used to say laughingly that America has not been discovered for the first time, and that is true. It is a lie that is being taught in the schools and colleges and the universities that America was discovered by Columbus. In Turkey there is a seven hundred year old map in which America is completely drawn, both the Americas, North America and South America, an exact map of the whole world. When that map was discovered it was so shocking that not only was America known, it was so well known that maps of it existed. Then what had happened?
In Indian mythology, one of the great warriors of Mahabharat, the great Indian war of five thousand years before, had married a woman from Mexico. The word in Sanskrit literature for Mexico is Makshika. Mexico is a distortion of a Sanskrit word Makshika, because the description is exactly of Mexico; and in Mexico, Hindu temples have been found, and Hindu gods and their statues have been found. The Mexican temple is a replica of the Hindu temple.
George Gurdjieff used to say that America has been discovered many many times, but it becomes such a nuisance that we have to hush it up and forget all about it -- then somebody else discovers it again!
If Ronald Reagan and his fascist colleagues are not going to listen to the protest of the whole intelligent world, then the only way will be an absolute boycott; forgive the fools - - and forget them, so they can be discovered again by some Columbus.
The steps that Gorbachev is taking are immensely valuable, and are very convincing to the whole world that his intentions are for a beautiful co-existence.
There is no need of any war. You can have your democracy, you can have your communism, you can have your own ideology -- what is the problem? There is no need to impose your ideology on somebody else. At least man's spirit should be left in freedom to choose its own ideology -- religious, political, social. No government has the right over the rights of the individual; all governments are only servants. But strangely, because of the power in their hands, servants become masters; they start behaving as if the masters are servants. But this cannot go forever.
Yes, all the predictions of the ancient seers, like Nostradamus, that the world is going to end by the end of this century, are true in a very different sense than has been understood.
The old world is going to end, and a new world is going to begin. That is my interpretation of Nostradamus.
The old man has to disappear to give place to a new man with fresh values, with one earth undivided into nations, with one humanity undivided by religions, because religions don't need to be organized. Religion is a love affair, a love affair with existence. There is no question of any organization like Christianity, or Hinduism, or Mohammedanism.
Religion is as much purely individual as love, because religion is nothing but the purest and the highest quality of love. You don't organize love! You don't say that this is Christian love, this is Hindu love, this is Mohammedan love. Love is simply love, meditation is simply meditation, peace is simply peace, enlightenment is simply enlightenment. It cannot have any adjective with it.
Changes have been happening. They will come to a peak by the end of this century when the moment of ultimate decision will have to be faced by humanity, either to transform yourself totally; drop all that is old.... Don't look backwards; start creating new values, look forward -- because the past is the past and to visit the graveyard too much is dangerous. The graveyard is a place one should visit only once, and that too is a one-way affair... you simply go there and never come back.
It is the future that should be your concern. It is the future and the faraway stars that will become your challenges. You have heard always about the golden past. We have to forget all about it; we have to create a golden future.
The decisive moment is coming close-by; either we have to decide to commit suicide.... If we cling with the past, then that is the only possibility. If we drop the past and the dead and start afresh from ABC, from the very scratch, writing the destiny of man, the days of the last part of this century will be of a tremendous revolution. The revolution is going to be so great that Nostradamus can be said to be right, that the world will end -- the world as we have known it -- and a world that we have never even dreamt of has to begin.
Chidananda, you are right that we cannot throw away the responsibility on some fictitious God, that he will end the world. We are perfectly aware that if a third world war happens, we will be the only responsible people to have destroyed ourselves. I think changes happen only in such dangerous and critical moments. If life goes on smoothly and comfortably great changes don't happen, but if life comes to a place where you have to choose between death or a new style of life, I am absolutely certain you will choose the new style of life rather than the old well-acquainted death.
Yes Chidananda, there is no god, and man is going to be responsible for whatever he chooses. And I trust in the deepest longing of everybody: it is for life, it is for love, it is for joy, it is for song, it is for flowers, it is for dances. It is for love.
Man cannot choose a global death.
It is an impossibility.
Yes, the old world will come to an end; Nostradamus is not going to be wrong. But his interpreters are all wrong. My interpretation is: The death of the old is the birth of the new.
A man down on his luck goes home to his wife and tells her, "Look dear, we are running out of money and we are gonna have to cut down on all the luxuries." He then adds scornfully, "If you would just learn to cook we could fire the chef." "In that case," replies the woman,"if you would learn to make love we could fire the chauffeur."
In critical moments one has to be truthful, and if things are going to change, then you have to change also. Your ways of love have to change. You have to drop old kinds of jealousies, competitions; you have to drop old values of honor, respectability, royal blood... all nonsense. You have to learn that the whole humanity is one brotherhood. The black and the white and the in-between, all are the same.
I am reminded... Rabindranath was in Geneva. He had just been awarded the Nobel prize, and he was being received by the government of Switzerland in a vast welcome party.
Everybody was white. Somebody asked, Rabindranath, "What is your explanation? Why has God created such discriminations -- because you insist on one brotherhood of the whole humanity."
Rabindranath said, "God first created a man out of mud and baked him, but being inexperienced, baked him too much. He's the negro. He created a second man. Being afraid that he may again make another negro, he pulled him out quite early, unbaked...
he's the white man."
That's why in the white man the desire for having a tan continues... a little more baking.
And baking powders are available, baking lotions are available; put on those lotions and powders and lie down naked under the hot burning sun. This desire is because they were pulled out of the bakery a little too soon. God said, "My God, I have committed another mistake."
That's why the Indian is in-between. That is the third person he baked, just right, neither a little more, nor a little less. But more than that, there is not any difference... just a little more sun, a little less sun.
There is no need for any color discrimination. There is no need to have boundaries of nations, because the earth has no boundaries. There is no need to have flocks of people gathered separately -- the Catholics, the Protestants, the Hindus, the Mohammedans; each one should be free to have his own immediate and personal contact with existence, his own prayer.
The new man is on the horizon.
All the preparations to destroy the world will only destroy the old man and the old world.
They will create the basic necessity for the birth of a new man. I can see him on the horizon already. He has arrived; it will just take some time for people to recognize him.
Michael, you are really becoming intelligent. It is not expected from people who come from Sydney, Australia. This has never happened before! Losing your memory is of great significance. It means the energy is shifting from memory to intelligence.
Memory is mechanical; intelligence is non-mechanical. That's why computers can have memory; they don't have intelligence. If you ask them a question about which they have not been told before, you have to feed the information first, then you can ask the question, and without fail the answer will come. Intelligence is a totally different matter.
Your meditation is certainly going deeper. Leaving aside Sydney, Australia, and all the memories concerned with Sydney, Australia, leaving aside the past -- you are entering into a new space.
Only once in a while a computer has been intelligent -- only in jokes, not in reality.
A man was asking a computer, "Tell me about my father. What do you know about my father? I want all the information." The information came -- "Your father has gone fishing just three hours ago in the ocean." The man laughed and he said, "You're stupid!
My father is dead and he has been dead for three years; he cannot go fishing." The computer laughed and said, "That was not your father, that was only the husband of your mother. Your father has gone fishing; you just go to the beach and you will find him there."
I used to think that only in jokes computers can be intelligent, but just today Anando brought me the news that in Japan there are one hundred thousand robots -- just men, mechanical men -- working in factories, and not a small number, but working in thousands.... And the government has just released information that a strange thing is happening which is creating tremendous fear. These robots have suddenly started killing men. The robot is just working, he sees some man passing by, jumps, catches hold of him, and with his steel hands gives him a good hug and finishes him.
Ten people have been killed just in a few days. And if the government says ten, you can multiply by ten; at least one hundred must have died. Then governments accept, reluctantly, a small percentage. But the fear has become great, because one hundred thousand robots -- if they simply come out of the factories into the streets and start making hugging gestures to men and women.... These ten deaths happened in a strange situation, because those robots work through computers, they receive orders from the computer. They are machines, but somehow it seems something strange and mysterious is starting to happen.
The government has assured people, "Don't be worried about ghosts etcetera" -- because that is the first thing that comes to mind, that Anando's ghosts, finding a perfect body....
They have perfect human bodies, just they are made of steel; they can be good abodes for ghosts! Poor ghosts have to live on trees, in rain, in cold; this is a great opportunity! But once a ghost enters in, then there is danger. It may start doing things which the computer is not ordering, which it is not supposed to do.
You are not a robot. When you become silent, you start seeing your memories far away, as distant echoes. It is a very common experience that intelligent people have not very good memories, and vice versa; the people who have very good memories have never been found to be very intelligent. Sometimes idiots have great memories; because their whole energy is involved in their memory, they don't have any intelligence.
Intelligence is the power to face a new situation about which you know nothing. Memory is a reaction. You know the answer, the question is asked, you repeat the answer. But if any new question is asked the memory is impotent. A new question, a new situation, does not need your memory; it needs intelligence, because a new answer is needed, a new response is needed.
Linelli said to his daughter, "I no like-a that Irish boy taking-a you out. He's a-rough and common and besides he's-a big-a dumbbell."
"No papa," replied the girl. "Tim is the most clever fella I know. Why you say-a that? We have only been dating for nine weeks," the daughter replied, "and already he has cured me of that little illness I used to get every month."
Michael, don't try to cling to memory. Here nobody is bothered about where you come from; in fact nobody knows. Everybody comes from nowhere and goes on disappearing into nowhere again. Sydney or Calcutta or Bombay or San Francisco or Rome or London are all stations between two nowheres. And the trains are becoming faster; they don't stop on every station! There is no need to be worried. If you forget everything that you know, you will not be a loser -- because what do you know? It is not valuable at all. In fact it will be a great richness if you can forget all that you know, and suddenly enter into a state of not-knowing, fresh and young and innocent -- childlike. That's what meditation is, and that's what brings tremendous intelligence to you: to face every moment with a totally new response not borrowed from the past.
The most important thing... if you want to remember, if you are addicted to remembering and if you find it difficult, then don't be bothered about where you come from; then be bothered about where you are going to. That is better. At least that will keep you open, searching, hoping. Why cling to graves, and why be a digger of graves? Your memory- system is nothing but a graveyard. Try to live without memory, and see how life becomes suddenly fresh. Every face looks so new... you can even fall in love with your own wife.
Be happy! And next time when somebody asks you from where you are coming, just ask him: "From where does everybody else come?" -- nobody knows. And nobody knows where we are going.
Still, the going is good, we are enjoying. Who cares about the beginning and the end?
The real thing is in-between -- the pilgrimage.
I want to make your pilgrimage a bliss, a benediction, without any goal and without any source.
Lokita, there is certainly a relationship between the watcher and the laughter arising in you, because the watcher can see not only the stupidities of other people, but the stupidities of your own.
The watcher could see your dramatic mood. Before the watcher came in, you were identified with the dramatic mood; you had forgotten that it is just a dramatic mood.
Just watch people. Everybody is carrying a face which is a role, repeating some dialogue inside, preparing himself -- what he is going to say to the wife, because he is late.... And he knows perfectly well that not even once in his whole life has he been able to deceive her, but still he goes on doing the same stupidity.
If the watcher comes in, if suddenly you remember to witness, you will start giggling at yourself that you are such a fool. You go on falling in the same ditch every day, deciding every day never to fall again in the same ditch. But when the ditch comes close by, the attraction, the fascination, of falling in the ditch is so much that you forget all your decisions. You console yourself, "Just once more. From tomorrow, I'm going to keep my word, given to myself." But this has happened so many times. And you will do it your whole life, unless you allow the watcher to see the ridiculous acts that you are doing.
And there is certainly a deep relationship. As you watch you will start giggling about why you unnecessarily have a serious face. In fact, nobody is even looking at you; you can relax. And even if they are looking at you, a serious face is not a beauty. A joyous face, a face full of smile, radiant with some deep blissfulness, may be worth having. If you are being an actor, then choose at least some good act, some good part!
Everybody has chosen such ugly parts; their faces are dull and sad, their vibe that of a corpse. Still they want everybody to love them, respect them. And even dogs don't bark, even they tolerate; they just don't look, just "Let him go." Dogs also get tired, barking unnecessarily the whole day. They have their own fundamental ideology; they bark at people who wear uniforms -- policemen, postmen, sannyasins. They are absolutely against uniforms. They are certainly very rebellious people. They don't want any organizations in the world; everybody should be an individual. "What is this nonsense!"
The whole army, the whole brigade is going, and all the people are in the same dress -- dogs cannot resist the temptation to protest.
You pass by; even the dog does not protest. But if you watch, you will giggle! You will giggle at yourself, "Why you are carrying such a face?" and you will giggle at the dog, "Why are you ignoring me? You are also trying to be very serious." And you will be surprised, if you are really watching, that the dog is also giggling at you.
Lokita, if you don't believe me, you can try with Niskriya; he's such a serious man. Just look at him with a giggling face, and he is bound to giggle. Although it is against his German background -- he's a serious photographer, totally dedicated to his art; he does not look here and there -- but even he will laugh. And you will help him in being watchful too, because while you are laughing, watchfulness is easiest.
Perhaps you have not noted that fact. Next time you have a full-hearted laugh, try to see a very fundamental fact: watching is easiest while you are laughing, because laughing is not a serious act, and laughing is natural. Laughing creates in you an atmosphere of silence. If your laughter is really total, mind stops -- "Let this fool first laugh." Those are the moments when you can bring in the watcher very easily.
You heard these words "Laugh your way to God." Just remember that you don't laugh your way to a serious God, that's all. Laugh your way to a laughing God -- which is a very rare phenomenon. You will find on the way many gods who are absolutely serious, who have forgotten laughter.
Just for your giggling... and remember to watch while you are giggling:
The first grade class gathered around the teacher for a game of "Guess the Animal." The first picture the teacher held up was a cat. "Okay, boys and girls," she said brightly, "can anyone tell me what this is?"
"I know! I know! It is a cat." Yelled a little boy.
"Very good, Eddy. Now who knows what this animal is called?"
"That's a dog," piped up the same little boy.
"Right again. And what about this animal?" she asked holding up a picture of a deer.
Silence fell over the class. After a minute or two the teacher said, "I will give you a hint, children, listen. It is something that your mother calls your father around the house."
"I know! I know!" screamed Eddy, "It is a horny bastard!"
A sailor from the Greek navy was stranded on a desert island and managed to survive by making friends with the local natives -- such good friends, in fact, that one day the chief offered him his daughter for an evening entertainment. Late that night, while they made love, the chief's daughter kept shouting, "Oga, boga! Oga, boga!" The arrogant sailor assumed this must be how the natives express their appreciation when something is fantastic.
A few days later the chief invites the sailor for a game of golf. On his first stroke, the chief hit a hole in one. Eager to try out his new vocabulary, the Greek enthusiastically shouted "Oga boga! Oga boga!"
The chief turned around with a puzzled look on his face and asked, "What you mean, `Wrong hole?'" Okay, Maneesha?
The Golden Future