I am the only challenge
THE VATICAN HAS JUST ISSUED A STATEMENT IN WHICH THE POPE SUGGESTS THAT CULTS, SECTS AND "NEW RELIGIONS" SHOULD BE SEEN AS A CHALLENGE TO CHURCH AND SOCIETY.
THE STATEMENT SAYS THAT DEPROGRAMMING OF CULT MEMBERS IS MISGUIDED. THE VATICAN MADE THE STATEMENT AFTER CONSULTING CATHOLIC EXPERTS IN SEVENTY- FIVE COUNTRIES. HAVE YOU ANY COMMENT?
Christianity is dying so fast that every effort is being made to somehow keep it alive. No effort is going to succeed, for the simple reason that the whole Christian attitude, the religion and its philosophy, are so out of date that it is impossible to convince intelligent people to have faith in them any more.
Just in England the church attendance has fallen to five percent. Ninety-five percent of people are no more going to the church - and the same is the situation all over the world.
Thinking that perhaps psychology and new trends in psychological schools may be of help, Christianity has been trying for twenty years to imbibe as much psychology as possible, giving it a color of Christianity. The latest effort was deprogramming.
This was a desperate effort - because young people are joining new movements, new religions - and it is for the first time in history that parents are kidnapping their own children, and forcing them into psychiatric homes to be deprogrammed.
It is possible to deprogram a person very easily. And they were very happy because they were succeeding in bringing the sheep which has gone farther away from the fold back into the fold.
But then a new problem arose, and that was: the people who were deprogrammed, for them religion became only a question of programming, it lost the value of being a faith. You can again deprogram the person and he becomes a Hindu; you can again deprogram him and he becomes a communist - so programming and deprogramming became a psychological game. It destroyed the seriousness of the so-called religions: that it was not something of inner realization, it was only a question of conditioning the mind.
The people who were deprogrammed left the new movements, but they never became at ease with Christianity. Now they know what it is all about: it is simply a program. If somebody else kidnaps them and pays the fees to some psychiatrist he can program them into any religion, into any philosophy, into any dogma.
So it is simply a mind game. All talk of spirituality and religion is simply nonsense.
But people like Pope the Polack have no understanding of their own.
This was a simple fact which could have been seen in the very beginning - that if you can change a person's idea by a certain strategy, the same strategy can be used to change the idea that you have put into his mind.
In communist countries they have been using deprogramming for almost half a century.
In the Korean war, American soldiers who were caught by the communists were all deprogrammed.
They returned - the war ended - but they could not fit again into their society. And you will be surprised to know that within ten years after the war, thousands of veterans - soldiers who had come from Korea - had committed suicide in America, for the simple reason that they were in a limbo. The communists programmed them heavily for communism, and it was not a question of a few days - for years they were in the hands of communists. They cleaned them of all Christianity, all democracy, all capitalism - "these are all nonsense, the real thing is communism, dictatorship of the proletariat" - and when they came back, naturally they could not fit with American society; and nobody bothered about them - what had been done to their minds. It was so difficult to live in America for them because everything that they were seeing around them was wrong. Now they have brought a mind that has been conditioned, and nobody was aware of it.
It was such a torture that the only way out was to commit suicide, and no American leader - political or religious - even bothered to talk about it: "What is the reason that these people are committing suicide? They should be happy that they are back home."
Now the pope is consulting experts from seventy-five countries... it is not his own insight, it is not his own understanding. It is these experts who first suggested deprogramming. Now seeing the results.... It does not help, it simply creates a confusion in the mind of the person - a part of him still remains with the new movement he joined out of his own choice, and a part is what you have forced on him, and he cannot forgive you; you have been violent with him.
And many deprogrammed people again join the movements, and you cannot deprogram them a second time, because they know all the tricks that you did before.
These are the same experts who had suggested that people who are leaving Christianity and moving into new movements, can be turned back very easily. Now they see that they cannot be turned back so easily. Even if you force them back, they are never the same person. Their minds become mixed - and they know that they have been kidnapped, they know that they have been forced. They cannot forgive their parents, they cannot forgive the programmer; they cannot forgive the church; they cannot forgive the religion - because violence has been done against them. Their basic human right has been violated. Either they will have to join some movement or they will remain in this confused state.
And the greater danger that Christianity created was for itself: the people who had not moved into new movements, who had not been reconditioned, became aware that it is only a game of programming. You can program a person into any kind of thing; it is just to put certain ideas into his mind-computer, and there are ways and methods by which this can be done.
You have taken away the profundity of religion itself. That's why the pope has issued the order that nobody should be deprogrammed.
This could have been seen from the very beginning. Anybody who understands the ABC of psychology could have seen it.
Now to say that new religions should be accepted as a challenge.... What has Christianity got to offer to humanity? If it had anything these people would not have moved into all kinds of things that are superficial, sometimes even stupid - but still they are more exciting than the dullness of Christianity, than the boring dogmas, the illogical concepts for which your heart never says yes and you are being forced to say yes.
It is just to cover up the stupidities that they have done in twenty years of deprogramming. Something has to be said to them, "Now what will you be doing? If not deprogramming, then what else? Take it as a challenge."
But are they alive to take it as a challenge? Have they any validity to take it as a challenge? About all their fundamentals all that they can offer is "believe in it." But the new humanity wants evidence, proof, rationality, a scientific approach.
Challenge is possible if you can provide a scientific approach, but in scientific approach they will be in trouble.
Then virgin birth becomes difficult to prove, then resurrection becomes difficult to prove, then a man walking on water becomes difficult to prove. These things can only be taken on faith. If they want a challenge, and accept the challenge, then they will have to learn the language of science, the language of reason - not of belief.
And I don't see any possibility that Christianity can offer anything. It is doomed to die. The sooner it dies, the better - because it will free millions of people to think on their own, to search on their own. It will create a great revolution, the death of Christianity, because it is the biggest religion in the world, and it will not only be the death of Christianity, it will be the beginning of the death of other religions too. When the big brother dies, the others are going to follow.
In India when somebody dies his eldest son goes through an unnecessary torture - his head is shaved; his mustache, beard, everything is shaved. I have been asking Hindu scholars what is the reason for it. They said, "We don't know, but this has been happening for centuries. The eldest son has to shave all his hair."
I was talking to a shankaracharya and I asked him. He said, "I don't know but there must be something in it. What do you think?"
I said, "My thinking is that this shaving of the head is the signal to the eldest son that now it is his turn. 'Get ready! Your father is dead. Now you are in the front of the queue. Next your name is going to be called. This is the beginning!'"
He said, "From where did you get this idea?"
I said, "From nowhere. It is simply... you can see it, that the moment the father dies every responsibility comes to the eldest son; he becomes the head of the family. And certainly he is the next to follow. And whoever invented this strategy of shaving his head was doing a great service to make it known to the whole city that now this fellow is going to pop off any moment. And to this fellow also it was made clear that he should start getting ready, it is only a question of time. He has come to the first place in the queue."
Christianity's death, to me, is very significant.
Just the Catholics are seven hundred and fifty million in number - half of humanity is Christian. It will be a tremendous freedom. The pope is asking his followers to accept the challenge, but he himself is such a coward he cannot accept the challenge.
I have not come across a single Christian bishop or cardinal who was able to accept any challenge, for the simple reason that their basic philosophy is based on faith, on acceptance, on belief. And the person who is challenging you is not going to accept it as belief - you have to give evidence, you have to give proof, you have to provide eye witnesses for God.
They don't have even arguments. And the arguments Christians have given are all childish, retarded.
Anybody can destroy them without much effort.
But it has tremendous meaning that their experts from seventy-five countries are saying that deprogramming should be stopped. It means you cannot force man any more the way that has always been successful up to now. Times have changed and man has come to a certain maturity.
Now he wants freedom to choose his way of life. He does not want anybody else to decide it; he wants to decide it himself, because that is the first step of declaring one's individuality.
If the pope really means that it is a challenge, then he should not prevent the Italian government from giving me entry into Italy. Sixty-five prominent figures in Italy, internationally known people who have contributed in different dimensions, have protested, "Why is he not being allowed to enter?"
The government has not said no, and it is now almost six months since I applied for an entry visa - just to be a tourist there.
And I have my people in Italy. They go on saying to our sannyasins there, "Yes, we will give it; it is coming." For six months every day, they say "tomorrow."
But the pope is heavy on the government.
If he really means challenge then let us begin it from the Vatican itself.
I accept the challenge, and I am ready for a public discussion - open discussion - on every Christian dogma, and to prove it absolutely meaningless, nonsense and absurd.
I RECENTLY READ ABOUT AN AMERICAN WOMAN WHO CLAIMS TO BE POSSESSED BY A THIRTY-FIVE-THOUSAND-YEAR-OLD BEING FROM ATLANTIS CALLED RAMTHA.
THE WOMAN DISPENSES MYSTICAL MESSAGES FROM RAMTHA VIA SATELLITE TV, IN CONCERT HALLS, AND ON THOUSANDS OF AUDIO TAPES. PEOPLE PAY UP TO FOUR HUNDRED DOLLARS A SEAT TO HEAR THE THIRTY-FIVE-THOUSAND-YEAR-OLD OUTPOURINGS WHICH, JUST BY COINCIDENCE, SEEM TO BE BASED ON A FAIR AMOUNT OF MODERN, SELF-HELP THERAPY.
I KNOW YOU SAY TO TRUST EXISTENCE, BUT I CANNOT HELP BUT BE SKEPTICAL. CAN YOU HELP ME?
Anando has brought me the news about this woman. In America, any idiotic thing has an appeal, and the more you have to pay for it, the more appeal it has.
In other countries you pay more if the thing is more valuable. In America, it is just the reverse: if you have to pay more then the thing becomes more valuable.
That woman - I have not heard it before - not only says that she is a thirty-five-thousand-year old ancient being from the lost continents of Lemuria and Atlantis, she also says that she is the reincarnation of the Hindu god Rama. In fact, she has concocted the name Ramtha from Rama.
And whatever she is saying there is nothing new in it.
In the article that Anando has brought to me she has criticized me also. She has said that the moment her books are published, Osho's books will simply disappear from the market, nobody will read them.
One thing is certain - that she is reading them! And perhaps most of her outpourings are from those books. Otherwise out of thousands of books why has she chosen only my name? It cannot be just an accident. She must be reading those books, she must be using the material from those books, and now she has to prove that those books are not right - because of the inner fear that she has stolen from them.
It is very significant that there are many writers around the world who are stealing words, sentences, paragraphs, whole ideas from the books - not mentioning my name because then they won't look original; but they are afraid that somebody may find out that these are from my books so they have to do one thing more: they have to condemn me in some way, to balance. "This man cannot be stealing from Osho, he is against him." So they do both: they condemn, they criticize, and they steal.
I don't know this woman, but one thing is certain: she is reading my books. She is stealing from those books, she is afraid of those books, she would like those books to disappear from the market.
Otherwise why mention it? I am nobody. Why bother about me?
And in America it has been now a long tradition. There are always people who are from Atlantis, Lemuria, Tibet - saying things which are written in ordinary literature. You have just to go to a library and look and you will find every sentence that they are saying is stolen; it is not from Lemuria, it is from the public library of the town.
But people don't read. They listen to all this garbage and they pay for it. And there is psychology in it; if you pay four hundred and fifty dollars just to sit in audience, when she goes in a trance and starts talking.... And not only that, if you are listening to her and seeing her on your television in your home, you have to pay two hundred dollars....
When people pay that much money, they themselves are caught in a difficulty. If they say it is all nonsense then they have been an idiot to pay. They have to go home and say, "It is just far out.
Four hundred and fifty dollars is nothing. Any amount of money is nothing. What she is saying is so valuable."
This was the case with EST. Werner Erhardt was charging people two hundred and fifty dollars - and insulting them, not allowing them to go to the bathroom. The whole day the session was continuing, they were not allowed to eat, and they were in every way humiliated - and they had paid two hundred dollars for it. They could not leave in the middle of the session because they had paid two hundred dollars. They wanted to see the whole thing - perhaps in the end something comes out - and something came out: many of the people will piss sitting there in the hall! And if you have been holding your bladder for the whole day and then you cannot hold it any longer - in spite of you it starts coming out - it is such a great relief that one has a taste of let-go! And people loved it because it was an experience. It was an experience!
And they will tell their friends, "It is miraculous. I felt so relieved, all tension gone. Every fiber of my being relaxed." And just word of mouth - Werner Erhardt was not advertising at all - just word of mouth.
He will simply say to people, "Share to your friends the great experience that you have had."
And nobody wants to go outside and say that it was simply stupid and we have been befooled and conned.
But the trick was significant - because nobody has ever done it before. You can do it alone, although it will be difficult. But there are three hundred people and the bathroom is locked and one person is standing there not to allow anybody; you can leave, but you cannot go to the bathroom.
So the whole strategy is that your mind, your thoughts, all will stop. Your whole thing was how to keep control of your bladder, your whole life was in the bladder. And naturally, it was a great concentration.
But there is a limit. After a certain limit you cannot manage it. And when one person relaxed, at first he felt a little embarrassed, but the relaxation was so great that people started standing up and telling, "I have got it - the experience!" And then others followed. When they saw that others are doing it here in the hall and getting the experience, and they are like idiots holding it... so most of the crowd got it! And they spread the message to their friends, "You should go. You should not miss."
And certainly it was a relaxation after such a tense day; humiliation on the one side - shouting, making you look stupid, retarded; making you confess that you are stupid, that you are retarded, "Say exactly what you feel but you never say! Be truthful, be sincere!" And all the time you are holding your bladder. The whole trick of EST was contained in the bladder.
Now, many people have pissed, got the experience, and the whole movement is gone! Now nobody wants to piss for two hundred dollars!
WHEN I READ THE FIRST BOOK I HAD EVER READ OF YOURS, COME FOLLOW ME, AND I CAME TO THE STORY OF BODHIDHARMA WHO WAS STARING AT THE WALL, I COLLAPSED IN GREAT LAUGHTER FOR ALMOST AN HOUR. THE FOLLOWING NIGHT I HAD AN EXTRAORDINARY DREAM BECAUSE I DREAMED IN WORDS - WHICH I HAD NEVER DONE BEFORE. IT WAS A FOUR-SECOND DREAM:
AN OLD MAN ASKED A YOUNG MAN, "IS?"
THE YOUNG MAN ANSWERED, "YES."
THE OLD MAN ASKED, "WHAT?"
THE YOUNG MAN SAID, "NOTHING."
The dream was really the whole message of the book that you had read. Those few words - it came in words because there is no way of making a picture of it. How will you make a picture of 'is' or a picture of 'nothing'... and a picture of 'yes'? That's why you saw the first dream in your life in words - because the book that you were reading was concerned with these words. It was concerned with isness.
The old man said, "Is?" Perhaps he is the master...
And the young man, perhaps the disciple, said, "Yes."
But the old man asked, "What?" He wanted to be certain whether the young man has understood "is?" or has just said "yes" rationally. If it was only a rational answer "yes," things would have been different. That is why he is asking, "What?"
And the young man said, "Nothing." Because isness is at the same time nothingness. It is both together. In fact, it is one thing, just two names of one thing.
You dreamed really a golden dream, which summarizes my whole message, that you should come to feel isness as nothingness; and there is nothing else, nothing more to realize or to know; you have known all. It was truly, authentically, a very insightful dream - too close to reality to call it a dream.
You must have been impressed so much by the book that it went directly to your very heart.
But this has to become your whole life. This dream has to become your reality.
SHRIVATSA GOSWAMI, THE SO-CALLED SPIRITUAL MASTER OF THE INTERNATIONAL SOCIETY OF KRISHNA CONSCIOUSNESS, THE HARE KRISHNAS, HAS RECENTLY STATED THAT YOU ARE "VERY LOW CLASS, NOT TO BE COUNTED AS A RELIGION, AN OUTRIGHT SCOUNDREL."
DO YOU HAVE ANY WORDS FOR THIS SAINT?
I don't know Shrivatsa Goswami. It is very strange that a scoundrel knows nothing of the saint and the saint knows about the scoundrel. He thinks he is criticizing me; he is wrong.
I have never said that I am holier than others, higher than others. I am really the last.
I could have agreed with Jesus if he had just changed his statement a little bit. He says, "Blessed are those who are the last because they shall inherit the kingdom of God."
I have criticized it. I would not have criticized it if he had said, "Blessed are the last for they are in the kingdom of God." My criticism is that he is putting the kingdom of God in the future and consoling the people who are in misery here. His statement is more a consolation than a truth. "Blessed are those who are the last because they are in the kingdom of God this very moment" - I would have agreed with this wholeheartedly.
Shrivatsa Goswami said that I am low class. I would like to say to him that I am the lowest of the low.
He says I am not worth considering. Then why is he considering me? I am simply surprised. These people are in some way haunted by me. I have never heard his name before.
I used to know his master, Swami Prabhupada, who created the movement of Hare Krishna. He was one of the greatest idiots, and had a great talent for attracting idiots. If you want to find a gathering of idiots you can find it in the Hare Krishna movement.
This man - if he has become the successor - must have proved to the master that he is the greatest idiot amongst the other idiots.
And one thing I want to tell him is that it is better to be a scoundrel than to be an idiot. To be a scoundrel needs some intelligence.
And when I say that these people are a collection of idiots, I don't say it without reason.
His name is Govats Goswami. 'Govats' means the son of a cow, and 'Goswami' means the husband of a cow. Now only an idiot can give such a name, and only an idiot can carry that name.
And these people drink every day... because they are absolute fanatics; just as in Christian cults there are fundamentalist Christians, there are the Witnesses of Jehovah - Hare Krishna belongs to the same category.
The devotees of Krishna in India don't call heaven by the same name as anyone else. Buddha calls it nirvana, Hindus call it moksha, Jainas call it kaivalya - beautiful names; kaivalya means absolute aloneness, moksha means freedom, nirvana means nothingness. But the followers of Krishna call their heaven golok, cowland. Krishna seems to be the ancientmost cowboy; and they drink every day a certain thing they call panchamrit, five elixirs; and it is made of five things coming out of the cow - the urine of the cow, the cow dung, the milk, the curd, the butter. They mix all five every day and they drink it, and this is five elixirs; and those who drink these five elixirs are certain to reach to golok. I don't know why one should want to go to golok. What are you going to do there?
So when I say these people are idiots, I have reasons to say so. Only idiots can think that cow dung and urine of the cow are something spiritual, and they will transform your consciousness. They have not transformed the cow. How they are going to transform human consciousness? And what is the point? Even if your consciousness is transformed and you reach to golok it was better here; at least you were human beings.
And I don't think it a criticism when he calls me a scoundrel. I am. It is a compliment.
To all the religions I will appear as a scoundrel because I am destroying them so mercilessly. Nobody has been so hard - knowing that they have the same weaknesses as other religions, everybody was silent about other religions' weaknesses. Because I don't have any religion I don't have any fear. I can expose everybody. They don't have anything to criticize me with, they can only call me names.
In another report Anando has showed me, he has called me a charlatan. In this report he calls me a scoundrel. But one thing is certain, that he is more interested in me than in his own great idiot who created the Hare Krishna movement, Prabhupada. He should talk about him, not about me.
They will talk about me and they will say that I am not worth considering. And they can't see the contradiction - so clear, in the same statement, that I am following them wherever they are, disturbing their sleep, cutting their roots, and they have nothing to defend.
I have criticized Krishna. That's why they are angry. Prabhupada was very angry, because I had called him a dodo. But he was a dodo.
He was teaching those people celibacy which necessarily brings sexual perversion. He was teaching these people begging. He was teaching these people that you need not do anything except repeat continuously "Hare Krishna, Hare Rama".
This is a sure way of destroying anybody's intelligence. These are the methods of programming.
Now if somebody thinks that this is enough to transform your consciousness, that whatever you are doing you go on chanting inside, loudly or silently, "Hare Krishna, Hare Rama", dancing in the street, "Hare Krishna, Hare Rama" - because only these two words will be continuously hammered. All your subtle cells, your whole system of mind, will be spoiled. It is not made only for two words. It will not be used, and unused those delicate cells start dying.
So first the idiots get attracted, and if by chance somebody has some little intelligence, then these methods will destroy it.
These people are continuously chanting - not knowing that repetition of a single word or a single mantra is going to kill your intelligence.
Intelligence needs to be sharpened in new areas, new dimensions. It has to move into the unknown.
"Hare Krishna, Hare Rama" - it becomes stuck there.
Prabhupada was angry because he could not answer my criticism of Krishna. If he was honest, and if these people are honest - this Goswami - then they will call Shri Krishna the greatest scoundrel ever. He forcibly collected sixteen thousand women as his wives, without marrying them - and they were all married, they had children, they had husbands... but he was powerful, fascist. Any woman he liked was immediately taken to his palace, without any consideration of what will happen to the children. Sixteen thousand women! No other man in the whole of history has been so ugly.
And he was the cause of the greatest war in India, the great Indian war, Mahabharata. He forced Arjuna, his friend and disciple, to fight the war - and it was almost at a similar time as we are living in today, the same critical moment; the war was going to be very dangerous because the whole world was divided in two parts, and both the parts were ready to fight and destroy each other; whoever will be the winner will find only corpses and corpses all around the kingdom. Arjuna could see it. Anybody could have seen it, that this is a very stupid kind of thing - because they had all the scientific means to destroy people on a great scale.
There are suspicions in scholars' minds that perhaps they had come to know atomic energy. Their few weapons look like atomic weapons.
And Arjuna was saying, "It is better that I should go to the Himalayas and forget all about it, let my other brothers rule" - it was a fight between cousin-brothers - "because I don't see the point. If everybody is dead, even sitting on the golden throne I would be ashamed, I would feel so guilty that I might commit suicide."
But Krishna forced him, argued, rationalized, explained, and finally - the ugliest argument that religions use - he said to him that, "It is God's will, and if you go against it you are going against God. Don't play God. If God wants the war, let it happen!"
Bringing God into the argument is always cunning. It means you don't allow the other person any chance. He would have to say, "I don't believe in your God"... but he is also conditioned like you in God. If it is God's will, then Arjuna unwillingly fought the war. And what he envisaged happened - millions of people died, and then for years disease spread all over the country and it broke down the very spine of the land. India never could become again the same beautiful country with the same joy, the same forest universities of the seers, the same synthetic vision of body, mind and soul, of matter and spirit; it could never come to those beautiful days again. It went on falling into poverty, into repression, into all kinds of ugly things. And it goes on falling. It is now five thousand years; it is still suffering from this man Krishna.
And chanting his name you will reach to golok?...
And these are the cults the pope thinks are a challenge.
I am the only challenge. These cults are not a challenge. What challenge will these cults make? - because they are as idiotic as the pope's Christianity is.
What new movements are there? They are all fanatic, stupid - anybody can see their stupidity. They are not a challenge.
But the pope is such a coward he cannot even mention my name directly. I am the only challenge, because I can see that all these movements have nothing to challenge with because they are in the same boat, with the same kind of beliefs - if not in Christ then in Krishna; if not in Krishna then in Rama. But the base is rotten, and the philosophy is just rubbish.