IS THE DEVIL REALLY MALE?
Deva Prachurya, it is a beautiful question because the women's liberation movement is talking about God being a woman; they have started pronouncing him not he but she. But none of them has thought about the devil, which is a counterpart. They both exist together, just like light and darkness, life and death.
Both are hypothetical. God does not exist the way you exist and the trees exist and the mountains exist; it is just a hypothesis. And because of the hypothesis of God, theologians have had to create his other pole, the other polarity, the devil. So the devil becomes darkness and God becomes light.
The Hindu UPANISHADS have one of the most beautiful prayers, perhaps the most beautiful in the whole world of religion. I love its poetry, but I don't agree with its philosophy. The prayer is very small, but very pregnant with meaning and significance. It says, "Lead me from darkness to light" -- tamsoma jyotirgamaya. It says, "Lead me from untruth to the truth" -- astoma sadgamaya. And in the final stage it says, "Lead me from death to life" -- mrityorma amritamgamaya.
It is sheer poetry, you cannot improve upon it -- but it is utterly false, because darkness and light are one phenomenon. You cannot go from darkness to light, because light is nothing but a little less darkness, and darkness is nothing but a little less light. It is a difference of degrees. Neither can you go from untruth to truth -- the same differentiation of degrees is there. Every untruth has something true about it, and every truth expressed has to join hands with untruth.
And you cannot go from death to eternal life, because death is part of life. It is not against it -- it is the very crescendo of life. They both exist together. A person who cannot die, cannot live either. Life exists with death almost like two wings of a bird: you cannot have the bird flying in the sky across the sun with one wing. Life and death are just like your two legs -- you cannot move with one leg.
Existence is dialectical: it always has its opposite. Without the opposite, it will not exist.
Because man created God as the very holy of the holiest, he had to create a devil. It was just an absolute philosophical necessity! The devil is the counterpart of God. You will be surprised to know... your name is Deva Prachurya. Deva means divine, and devil also comes from the same root; it also means divine.
But both are hypothetical. I have no objection if God is a woman, but certainly I am immensely happy if the devil is a woman! God may be, may not be, but the devil is certainly a woman; otherwise for such a long eternity the devil could not have been nagging God continuously! From whom is God escaping? Where is he hiding, and from whom? Why has he not the guts to come out, at least once in a while, to remind people that he is still alive? The woman does not allow it.
So I am not certain about God, but, Deva Prachurya, woman is certainly a devil -- and vice-versa!
Mrs. Markovitz got a knock on the door.
"It is your husband," shouted her neighbor, "he is face down in the swimming pool. I think he is drowned."
"Is today Wednesday?" asked Mrs. Markovitz.
"Yes," said her neighbor, "it is, but..."
"What time is it?" Mrs Markovitz asked.
"Eleven o'clock, but..." replied her neighbor.
"Then don't worry about a thing," said Mrs. Markovitz, "the pool man will be here in an hour!"
The husband has drowned... but the wife and the husband are the greatest enemies in the world; psychologists call them "intimate enemies." They have always been! It is a very recent development of insight.
God being a woman will create trouble. Then the devil will be a man -- because they have to be polar opposites. Perhaps the women's liberation movement has not thought about the implications of what they are doing. I would like God to be the man and tortured by the devil, the woman, rather than vice-versa, because good can be tortured by bad, but bad cannot be tortured by good. But the question simply has not come up around the world -- and women are insisting that God is a woman.
It is really strange that nobody has bothered about the devil, who is a more important person than God. God is only a VIP, the devil is a VVIP! God may have created the world, but the devil is running it -- and running it so devilishly and so perfectly.
Genghis Khan, Tamerlane, Nadirshah, Adolf Hitler, Joseph Stalin, Benito Mussolini, Ronald Reagan -- who do you think they represent? Certainly not God! They represent the devil, and they have made our history. They are the people who go on creating more and more evil in the world.
Friedrich Nietzsche has declared, "God is dead and man is free." His statement is incomplete; he has forgotten about the devil. God may be dead -- most probably he cannot manage to survive the devil for so long -- but the devil is there. And unless the devil is also dead, man cannot be free.
Man's real problem is not God; that poor fellow has never been seen after those first six days when he created the world. Since then nobody knows where he is -- whether he is sick, or got so tired of creating the world in six days that the seventh day he rested... that is allowed. But what happened on Monday? On office days you should be back. Since then he has been on holiday... it is an eternity. Most probably he died.
But the devil is still alive, and shows himself again and again. You cannot conceive of Adolf Hitler in any other way than an incarnation of the devil; you cannot think of Nadirshah and his great company, Tamerlane and Genghis Khan, as anything other than incarnations of the devil.
I remember one case... Nadirshah attacked India -- and he was a man who enjoyed killing people so greatly that his whole life he was killing and killing. One night he asked his soldiers to bring the most beautiful woman of the area, so they brought a prostitute from a nearby village. In India, prostitutes are a little different than in the West. In the West they are only sex objects. In the East they are artists, dancers, singers; their being sex objects is secondary.
She danced, and Nadirshah was very happy. The night was almost coming to an end when Nadirshah said, "Now I want to go to sleep, you can go back."
He gave immense rewards to the woman, but the woman said, "It is dark outside. With so much money, so many diamonds... I am a woman and alone, and the path goes through a dark forest -- I cannot go."
Nadirshah told his soldiers, "You go ahead of her, and go on burning everything that you find -- forest, village, anything. Make it a light."
Nobody has made light that way -- just a small torch would have done. But Nadirshah had such a devilish mind: he burned seven villages and the whole forest to make it almost look like day. He told the prostitute, "Now you can go. And you will remember that you had come to see not some Tom, Dick, Harry; you had come to see the great emperor, Nadirshah. He can make the night into day." Thousands of villagers were burned alive.
You cannot say such a man represents God in any way.
The devil is spread all over your history; even today, the devil is ruling you. The devil is a politician, has always been a politician. God is a nice guy -- if he exists -- very gentlemanly, has remained almost anonymous, almost a nobody. If one has to think about who is more important, indubitably it is the devil.
I would like him to be a woman, because the woman has many devilish qualities. But then God will have to be a man, because the polarity... both cannot be women, both cannot be men. If both were women, there would have been constant struggle and fight and jealousy and envy. If both were men, there would have been homosexuality and AIDS. So that is not acceptable; they have to be polar opposites.
My feeling is that the devil is man and God is woman -- at least he has been functioning as very womanly. The devil is very aggressive, and God goes on retreating.
So your question is very important theologically -- although in reality they both don't exist. Hypotheses cannot be male or female: two plus two is four -- do you think it is male or female? It is just neutral, it has no genital difference.
God and the devil are just theological hypotheses. It simply shows the weakness of the theologians that they could not manage the world without false hypotheses to support their systems. God they needed to create the world -- without ever bothering who created God. Their fundamental idea is that without somebody creating, nothing can be created; that's why they have accepted God as the creator of the world. But why stop with God?
What happened to the original thesis?
The thesis was that nothing can be created without a creator. Who created God?
According to all religions... the question has remained unanswered. They know that if they say God A was created by God B they will get into more trouble... then God C and God D, and the whole alphabet. Still, when they reach X,Y,Z, nothing will be solved -- who created God Z?
In fact they have started from a very wrong premise. Existence is intrinsically self- generated. It has always been here, so the question of creation does not arise. And it will always be here, so the question of destruction does not arise. It may pass through many phases of evolution, but it will remain.
If God can be dropped, there is no need for the devil. They are a married couple -- because nobody has seen either of them, it is very difficult to say who is man and who is woman. But the devil seems to have been functioning around the world for centuries; after those six days, he has been in charge.
Most probably, if you want hypotheses also to be divided as male and female, then he seems to be the male, because he has been working all along... and God must be a housewife -- that's why you don't see her any more in the marketplace. But the devil you will find anywhere. You don't have to look for him; he is looking for you!
I am more interested that you get rid of both -- whoever they may be, male or female.
Getting rid of both of them, existence becomes absolute freedom; man attains dignity and self respect.
The very idea of God and devil makes you either the slave of one or the slave of another.
The sinners are the servants of the devil, and the saints are the servants of God. But to be a servant, to be a slave, is against human dignity.
Hence I say unto you: God is dead, the devil is dead. Their death is very necessary for you to be alive. If they are alive, you are dead. Then you are imprisoned from both sides.
Then man has to do a strange game continuously: he works for the devil, and worships God -- because you have to keep both of them happy.
An old man was dying and suddenly he started worshiping first God, repeating his name, and then the name of the devil. His family was aghast! They said, "Are you mad? In the last moments of your life you are remembering the devil?"
He said, "I don't want to take any chance... who knows where I am going and whom I am going to meet? And it costs nothing, so I will remember both. Whoever meets me, I have remembered him, and if nobody meets me, there is no problem. If both meet me, then too there is no problem. I am calculating every possibility."
Man is crushed between the devil and God, between good and evil. I want man not to be crushed, not to be enslaved, but to be an individual in his own right, free. And out of his freedom, and out of his awareness, he should act -- not according to what God wants.
I have told you the story of the ten commandments. When God made the world, he went to the Babylonians and said, "Would you like to have a commandment?"
They said, "First we would like to see what it is."
And he said, "Thou shalt not commit adultery."
The Babylonians said, "What would we do? We don't want any commandment, please forgive us."
He went to the Egyptians, and he went to other races. Nobody was willing, because everybody asked, "What is the commandment?" And they said, "We don't want to be encaged in any commandment. We want to live on our own."
Finally he reached Moses and asked him, "Do you want to have a commandment?"
Moses asked, "How much does it cost?"
This is a rare question! God had gone all around the world... and it was only Moses who asked the price, the first thing. God said, "It costs nothing."
Moses said, "Then I will have ten!" If it does not cost anything, why not have ten? -- that's how there are ten commandments.
Every religion has created its own commandments -- strange, unnatural -- out of fear or out of greed. But they have made this poor humanity that you see around the world.
Even the richest man is so poor because he does not have the freedom to act according to his own consciousness. He has to act according to principles given by somebody else, and one does not know whether that man was a con-man, a fraud, a poet, a dreamer. There is no evidence... because so many people have claimed that they are incarnations of God, that they are messengers of God, that they are prophets of God, and they all bring different messages. Either God is mad or these people are simply lying. Nost probably they are lying...!
It gives you a great egoistic feeling if you are a prophet, a messiah, an avatara, a tirthankara -- somebody special, not just an ordinary human being. Then you can dominate. This is a different kind of politics. Wherever there is domination, there is politics.
The politician is dominating because of physical force -- his armies, his armaments, his nuclear weapons. The religious prophets, messiahs, saviors, avataras are dominating you spiritually. Their domination is more dangerous -- they are far greater politicians. They are dominating your life not only from outside but from inside. They have become your inside, they have become your morality, they have become your conscience, they have become your very spiritual being.
From inside they go on dominating you, saying what is right, what is wrong. You have to follow them, otherwise you start feeling guilty, and guilt is one of the greatest spiritual diseases. If you follow them, you start feeling unnatural, neurotic, perverted, because you are not following your nature. If you follow your nature, you are not following your prophets and your saviors.
All these religions have created for man a situation in which he cannot be at ease, he cannot enjoy life, he cannot live it in its totality. So my suggestion is, it is better to let both guys be dead. And what does it matter? -- when one is dead, whether he is man or woman does not matter. A dead woman is not dangerous, neither is a dead man. They are not alive.
Let humanity be free from all these old superstitions which have dominated so badly, and distorted human nature so immensely. You can see the humanity that is the result. You say that a tree is known by its fruits. If that is true -- and that is true -- then your whole past of prophets, saviors, avataras, tirthankaras, God, devil, should be judged by the humanity that you find today.
This insane humanity -- miserable, suffering, full of anger, rage, hate... If this is the result of all your religions, of all your leaders -- whether political or religious -- then it is better to let God and the devil die. With God and the devil gone, political leaders and religious leaders will not have any support; they will be the next to die.
I want man to be politically free, religiously free, free in every dimension to function out of his own still small voice, out of his own consciousness. And that will be a beautiful world, a real revolution.
I FEEL SO BLESSED TO HAVE THIS OPPORTUNITY TO FLOAT IN YOUR OCEAN OF SILENCE. DOES MY WANTING MORE BLOCK MY AVAILABILITY TO RECEIVE IT?
Anand Saten, I am sorry to say to you that your wanting more is certainly going to block your availability to receive the bliss that you are receiving without expectations. This is a simple, basic rule.
Jesus says, "Ask and it shall be given to you." I say, "Don't ask, otherwise it will be not given to you; not only that, whatever is given to you will be taken away." Jesus says, "Knock and the doors shall be opened," and I say unto you, "Knock, and even if the doors are open, they will be locked!"
Jesus says, "Seek and ye shall find," and I say unto you, "Seek, and you have missed forever. Don't seek, and you are it -- there is nothing else to find."
The bliss that you are finding here is not coming from outside; it has been within you always -- you just have never been in the company of blissful, madly divine people.
Seeing so many people flowering, suddenly you have blossomed.
Blissfulness is contagious. That's my whole idea of creating small oases around the world, where people can find blissful people all around. The very presence of those blissful people will transform them. Intrinsically everyone has the capacity, but they are always surrounded by miserable people so they never become aware that there is a possibility of being blissful. Everybody is miserable and it looks a little weird and awkward and embarrassing: when everybody is miserable and you are enjoying, one feels guilty. You have to be part of the company you have chosen.
The whole world can be blissful because everybody carries it within himself. But there are a few points to be remembered, and the most important is: don't ask for it, don't knock for it, don't seek it, don't expect it -- otherwise you will become closed. Remain available and open, and it comes... and it comes in abundance.
Paddy drove through the red light and smashed into a car driven by Father O'Hagan. The car turned over three times and the priest was thrown from the vehicle into the gutter.
Paddy rushed over and said, "I am terribly sorry, Father".
"Saints above!" said the shaken priest, "You almost killed me."
"Here," said Paddy, "I have got a small bottle of whisky. Take some and you will feel a lot better."
Father O'Hagan took a couple of large gulps and then continued his tirade: "What were you doing? You nearly launched me into eternity."
"I am sorry, Father," said Paddy. "Take a few more sips and it will ease your nerves."
The priest took another large gulp and almost finished the bottle, which he offered to Paddy saying, "Why don't you have a drink?"
"No thanks, Father," said Paddy, "I will just sit here and wait for the police to arrive!"
Just be a little alert, that's all! If you can learn only one lesson, that of being conscious, blissfulness will arrive. And it is natural -- I can understand -- when it comes, you want more. But you have to be alert not to want more. On the contrary, be thankful for that which has come, and more will be coming -- that is absolutely certain. I say it on my own experience, not according to any scripture, or according to any religion, or according to any saint.
Don't expect! Whatever you get, be grateful for it. Instead of expecting more say, "This is too much! I don't deserve it, I have not earned it." Bow down to existence in deep gratitude, and you will feel flowers of bliss and benediction showering on you from all sides.
Once you have learned the simple rule, you will never expect -- and you will always be getting more and more. Just remain available, keep the doors and windows of your heart open.
FOR A FEW DAYS MY HEART HAS BEEN JUMPING ALL AROUND THE ASHRAM AND IT FEELS LIKE I AM LOSING CONTROL.
HOW FAR CAN I GO?
Nirgrantha, you have already gone too far if your heart is jumping all around the ashram!
And you are still saying, "It feels like I am losing control." You have lost control long ago; otherwise how can your heart go on jumping all around the ashram?
You forget all about control. This place is not for people who control; this place is for people who let their heart dance wherever it wants to dance!
Remember a famous proverb: Talent is what you possess, genius is what possesses you.
You cannot control genius; you can control talents. Here we are creating the possibility for your sleeping genius to be awake. Once your genius is awake, you are going to be possessed, you will not be in control -- and there is no need to be in control. The sky is vast, millions of stars are moving without crashing, and no traffic control! Here I see thousands of hearts dancing, running -- no traffic control! Nature manages itself so perfectly that if you don't disturb, everything goes alright -- and very smoothly.
A man dressed as Adolf Hitler visited a psychiatrist. "You can see I have no problems," he said. "I have the greatest army in the world, all the money I ever need and every conceivable luxury you can imagine."
"Then what seems to be the trouble?" asked the doctor.
"It is my wife," said the man, "she thinks she is Mrs. Jones."
So just remember one thing: you can be dancing all around joyously, just don't get caught up with a wife, otherwise she will control you! You have lost control -- and here in my place there are great women controllers! The moment they see that some fellow is getting out of control, they immediately control. So avoid a wife. Once in a while you can dance with any woman, but remain free.
Control is not my message; control is repression. Nirgrantha... I have given you the name Nirgrantha; do you understand its meaning? One who is absolutely free -- without any complexes, without any chains, without any bondage. And you are asking me about control...?
I had explained to you when I gave you the name to drop all chains, drop all bondages.
Just be yourself and do whatsoever pleases you. Just remember one thing: don't interfere into anybody's life, and don't allow anybody else to interfere in your life. This is true humanity -- authentic, honest, pure.
It was a rough ocean crossing, and Mr. Levensky was suffering the tortures of sea- sickness. During one of the more unsettled periods, he was leaning over the rail retching miserably, when a kindly steward patted him on the shoulder. "I know sir," said the steward, "that it seems awful, but remember -- no man ever died of sea-sickness."
Mr. Levensky lifted his green face to the steward and said, "For heaven's sake man, don't say that. It is the wonderful hope of dying that is keeping me alive!"
It is a very strange life!
"Be careful," the doctor told the relatives of an elderly man who was dying.
One by one they went up to him, "You look so much brighter today," exclaimed his daughter.
"You must be on the mend," said his son.
"I have not seen you look so healthy for years," said his wife.
The old chap opened his eyes and said, "Thank you for your kind words; it is good to know that I am going to die cured!"
Nirgrantha, rather than dying cured, why not live cured?
You are cured if your heart is jumping -- I have never heard of any dead man's heart jumping all around the ashram. We have three enlightened dead men in the ashram. This day is in their memory, and even on this day, they are not here! Dead men, even if they want to jump, cannot jump. So while you are alive, enjoy it to its fullest. Don't be worried about being tired or anything, because finally in your grave you will have enough rest!
Live a life of immense intensity and totality so that in your grave you don't toss and turn, because there is not much space! Don't miss this moment in thinking about control. In graveyards you can think about all these great things, and nobody will prevent you. You can keep control, you will have to keep control! You can follow all ten commandments, you will have to follow -- how can you commit adultery in a grave?
Before that, it is good to live as joyously and as freely as possible, because who knows when you will be coming back to this beautiful earth, to these beautiful people? Even today you will not find a gathering of such beautiful people.
This is my only crime: I am condemned all over the world for simply one reason, that I am making people live totally and intensely, not bothering about their commandments, not bothering about their holy scriptures, not bothering about their gods and their devils, their heaven and their hell.
All those things are to be thought about and contemplated in your grave. You will have enough time, almost the whole of eternity. So lie down there and be philosophical, be moral, don't commit any sin. But right now, don't be bothered about all these superstitions.
Only one thing has to be remembered, and that is to be as conscious as possible, because that will make you dance rightly, in right places, with right people! Your consciousness will not allow you to jump on somebody else's toes. That is the only sin.
According to me, to interfere in somebody's life is the only sin, and the only virtue is not to interfere in anybody's life. Let him be himself, and let you be yourself... your freedom.
This is, according to me, the authentic religiousness.
This is the only holy pilgrimage:
From here to here -- you don't have to go anywhere.
From now to now -- you don't have to travel in time or space.
Nirgrantha, you are in a good spirit; don't lose the track of it. Control is an old habit which every child is being taught from the very childhood: control -- control everything - - discipline, behave.
Now you are no more a child, and I am not your father -- I am not even your uncle!
Throw all control, throw all licenses, throw all boundaries. Life is so short, don't destroy it in controls and boundaries and mannerisms and etiquette and all kinds of nonsense.
Rejoice! I repeat, rejoice -- and rejoice totally. And if your heart is dancing, give it full energy. Everybody's heart is dancing. This is a place of dance, of song, of laughter. And I say this is the only kaaba, the only holy place in the world today. All holy places have become unholy, they have become prisons for man in the name of morality, control, discipline.
This is a small place with a vast territory of independence, freedom. The whole sky is yours -- even the sky is not the limit.
The Great Pilgrimage: From Here to Here