MANY TIMES SITTING IN YOUR PRESENCE I AM OVERWHELMED BY A VERY CHILDLIKE FEELING. IT SEEMS SO FAMILIAR, YET FROM A LONG TIME AGO. IN THESE MOMENTS THERE FEELS NO GAP OF YOU AND ME. I AM LIKE A CHILD PLAYING IN YOUR BEAUTIFUL GARDEN.
BELOVED OSHO, IS THIS SIGNIFICANT OR AM I ALREADY MOVING INTO MY SECOND CHILDHOOD AT THE RIPE OLD AGE OF THIRTY-FIVE?
P.S. YOU CAN SCARE ME ANY TIME.
Prem Yatra, this great experiment through which you all are passing is basically to achieve your lost childhood again.
When I say "your lost childhood," I mean your innocence, your eyes full of wonder, knowing nothing, having nothing, but yet feeling yourself at the top of the world. Those golden moments of wonder, joy, no tension, no worry, no anxiety, have to be regained, rediscovered. The sage is nothing but the circle that started in your birth coming full way, complete, back to the same point.
Of course the second childhood is far more valuable and significant than the first. In the first the innocence was there because of ignorance, so it was not pure and clear and in your possession; it was just a natural thing that happens to every childhood. The second childhood is your greatest achievement -- it does not happen to all. The second childhood makes you innocent without ignorance, the second childhood comes through all kinds of experiences. It is mature, centered, ripe.
You should be blessed that you are feeling like that. The second childhood is just exactly the existential meaning of meditation, and from there on is the great pilgrimage of coming back home -- which you have never really left, which is impossible to leave, because it is you. Wherever you will go, you will find yourself there.
It is not even a shadow which follows you because that will disappear if you are sitting in the shade. It will appear only when you are standing in the sunlight. Your shadow is not an eternal companion, and in times of darkness even your shadow itself leaves you. But in the times of light your shadow is back.
The same is the situation with friends, lovers: in the days of darkness they leave you just like the shadow; in the days of success, richness, they all come back. They are not really companions.
There is only one essential being in you which will be everywhere with you, without any condition. Even if you are in hell it doesn't matter, it will be with you; if you are in heaven it doesn't matter, it will be with you.
To find that essential core of your being is on the one hand utter innocence, and on the other hand is the greatest wisdom that has ever existed on the earth.
So your body may be becoming old, but if you are learning ways of being silent and peaceful and meditative and loving, you will not grow old. You will remain as young and as fresh as early morning dewdrops shining in the beautiful sunrise, looking far more precious than any pearls.
You should be happy and rejoice in your childhood. This is what Jesus meant when he said again and again, "Unless you are born again..." Even Christians have not got the meaning of his statement. They think literally that "unless you are born again" means that first you will have to die, and then you will be born, and on the judgment day Jesus will take you into paradise. That is not the meaning of the man.
What he is saying is: Unless you die right now as a personality and emerge as an innocent individuality, unscratched, unpolluted by the society and the people... This is your new birth, this is resurrection.
Enjoy your divine childhood, and when it is the right time I will scare you! You are too new; the childhood is not yet absolutely settled, and you can misunderstand if I scare you.
Just wait...! That moment will also come. Right now your whole concern should be getting deeper into childhood.
I don't scare anybody except Avirbhava, because she has a quality of a child. I don't know why. Perhaps her father is dead, her mother is dead... I feel a tremendous feeling for her - - and she is utterly innocent. So once in a while -- not once in a while, almost every day -- whenever I have the chance and she is close by, I try to do my best.
"I don't want your son, Ernie, swimming in our pool anymore" says Mrs. Meyer to her neighbor, Mrs. Jones.
"But what has my poor little Ernie done?" asks Mrs. Jones.
"He is constantly peeing in the pool," says Mrs. Meyer angrily.
"Don't be so hard on him," says Mrs. Jones, "all children of his age do that!"
"Maybe they do," says Mrs. Meyer, "but not from the diving board."
Childhood has its beauties, because it does not know the etiquette, the manners, and all kinds of crap. It is so simple and so innocent and so spontaneous.
A man walked into a bar and was amazed to see a dog sitting at a table with three men playing poker. The man went over and asked, "Can that dog really read his cards?"
"Sure he can," said one of the men. "But he's not much of a player. Whenever he draws a good hand he wags his tail!"
That is absolutely innocent... the poor dog cannot contain his joy.
Two cockroaches were munching delicacies on top of a garbage pile when one of them began telling of some new tenants in the nearby apartments.
"I hear," he said, "that their refrigerator is spotless, their floors are gleaming, and there is not a speck of dust in the whole place."
"Please, please," said the other cockroach, "not while I'm eating!"
Such bad news...!
It will be a tremendous revolution the day we start learning the languages of birds, of bees, of cockroaches. They all have their ways of communicating. But then the heart feels a little sadness, because we have not been able to learn even to communicate with human beings, and we have been here for millions of years. What kind of stupidity is this, that we don't know the whole humanity as belonging to us and we belonging to it? All that man has done is simply butchering, murdering, war. The same energy, the same effort would have made this world the greatest miracle in the whole universe.
But we don't understand each other. We may even be speaking the same language, but understanding is not necessarily expected; what is expected is misunderstanding. So people are hiding themselves, hiding their childhood, hiding their innocence, protecting themselves from everybody with defense measures; otherwise you will see children young and old all playing in this garden of the earth, rejoicing, laughing, giggling. Why this seriousness? Man has not gained anything out of this seriousness; he has simply lost everything -- but he continues to be serious.
I am absolutely against seriousness.
I call it a psychological sickness.
Only a playful, childlike, innocent behavior is the right behavior, is what I would like to call virtuous behavior, religious, spiritual... not only human but divine.
The moment you are as innocent as a child you have transcended humanity, you have entered into the world of godliness.
I LOVE THE WORDS YOU USE, "ONE'S ORIGINAL FACE," BUT I HAVE NO EXISTENTIAL GLIMPSE OR UNDERSTANDING OF WHAT YOU MEAN BY THEM. WOULD YOU CARE TO EXPLAIN FURTHER?
Veena, the original face is only a poetic expression for your absolute innocence, which is not damaged by your parents, by your teachers, by your society, by your culture and by yourself.
I can understand why you love those words... because you don't have the original face.
And the reason you don't have the original face is... You are trying hard for it, but whenever I look at you there is a certain pretension, a certain hypocrisy. There is no bad intention in your being, but you want to look the way you should look, and that is destroying the whole thing.
You should look the way you are.
Drop all nonsense that has been imposed on you with all those commandments that religions have been issuing, without any respect to the uniqueness of individuals.
Just be yourself.
That's the meaning of the original face.
It is just a poetic expression to say to you: Don't try in any way to look more beautiful, to look more meditative, to look more respectful. Those are deadly poisons... the very desire to look like somebody who you are not.
My whole teaching is: Just be what you are and don't care a bit about the world. Then you will feel a tremendous relaxation and a deep peace within your heart. That is your original face, relaxed, without tensions, without pretensions, without hypocrisies, without the so-called disciplines of how you should behave.
But all those poisons have gone deep in your blood, in your bones, in your marrow. What I am trying to do is to take out those poisons and give you back your naturalness. And there is nothing more beautiful than the natural, there is nothing more mysterious than the original; no etiquette, no mannerism can improve upon it.
But everybody is trying to improve upon himself. Then everything becomes false. Your smile is false, your hands raised together folded in reverence are just an exercise of the hands -- your heart is not with them. And unfortunately I have such eyes that I can see exactly where the trouble is; when everybody is laughing there are serious and sober people who are pretending to hold their laughter, because it doesn't look right.
Veena, you have been a long, long time with me, but I have never felt that you are relaxed, at ease, at home. Just being at ease, relaxed, at home, all these poor trees know what is the original face, these birds know what is the original face. Only man has forgotten, because he has found masks upon masks; he is lost in the jungle of masks, and now it is very difficult to find which is the original.
But a simple understanding... whenever you see yourself tense, remember that you are doing something against nature. Whenever you are doing something more special than others, remember that you are trying to be superior, behaving as a great meditator, behaving as a real English lady. English ladies don't have original faces!
Drop all this nonsense of being English and German and Indian. I see Indians here once in a while, and even in the tumultuous laughter of you all I can detect them; either they will laugh louder than anybody to show that they are not the Indians I condemn, or they will just look downwards to hide their face, because they have lost the intelligence to understand even a simple joke. And rather than enjoying the moment, they are judging continuously whether it is right to tell a joke in a religious discourse.... Who told you this is a religious discourse? I hate the very word! I just enjoy to be with you.
This very enjoyment is our religiousness.
We don't have anything except ourselves. And condemned by the whole world, which is a big world, still we have our simplicity, our innocence; we have got rid of all old garbage. Just allow yourself to come out of the cage that you yourself have been creating... and others have been helping.
The original face is a beautiful poetic expression, but it does not mean that you will have a different face. This same face will lose all its tensions, this same face will be relaxed, this same face will be nonjudgmental, this same face will not think of others as inferior.
This same face under these new values will be your original face.
There is an ancient proverb: Many a hero is a man who did not have the courage to be a coward. If you are a coward what is wrong in it? You are a coward -- it is perfectly good.
Cowards are also needed, otherwise from where will you get heroes? They are an absolute necessity to give the background to create heroes.
Just be yourself, whatever it is. The problem is that never before has anybody told you just to be yourself. Everybody is poking his nose in, saying that you should be this way, you should be that way -- even in ordinary matters.
In my school... I was just a small boy, but I hated to be told how I have to be. Teachers started bribing me -- "If you behave rightly, you can become a genius."
I said, "Hell with the genius -- I simply want to be myself."
I used to sit with my legs on the table, and every teacher was offended. They would say, "What kind of behavior is this?"
I said, "The table is not saying anything to me. It is something between me and the table, so why are you looking so angry? I am not putting my legs on your head! You should relax just as I am relaxing. And this way I feel better able to understand what nonsense you are teaching."
Just beside the room was a beautiful window, and outside were trees and birds and cuckoos. Mostly I was looking out of the window, and the teacher would come and say, "Why do you come to school at all?"
I said, "Because in my house there is no window like this which opens up to the whole sky, and around my house there are no cuckoos, no birds. The house is in the city, surrounded by other houses, so crowded that birds don't come there, cuckoos don't feel that these are the people to be blessed by their songs.
"Forget the idea that I come here to listen to you! I am paying my fee, you are simply a servant and you should remember that. If I fail I will not come to complain to you; if I fail I will not feel sad. But if for the whole year I have to pretend that I am listening to you, and I am listening to the cuckoos outside, that will be the beginning of a hypocritical life. And I don't want to be a hypocrite."
On every matter the teachers, the professors wanted you to do it in a certain way. In my school in those days, and perhaps even today, using a cap was necessary. I have nothing against caps; since I have left the university I have started using caps, but I never wore one until I left the university. The first teacher who was worried about me, said, "You are disturbing the discipline of the school. Where is your cap?"
I said, "Bring the school code of behavior. Is there any mention that every boy should use a cap? And if there is not, you are imposing something against the school code."
He took me to the principal of the school and I told the principal, "I am absolutely ready, just show me where it is written that a cap is compulsory. If it is compulsory, I may even leave the school, but first let me see where it is written."
There was no written code and I said, "Can you give me any other reasonable arguments for using the cap? Will it increase my intelligence? Will it increase my life? Will it give me better health, more understanding?" I said, "As far as I know, Bengal is the only province in India where caps are not used, and that is the most intelligent part of the country. Punjab is just the opposite. There for a cap, people use turbans -- such big turbans, as if their intelligence is escaping so they are keeping it. And that is the most unintelligent part of the country."
The principal said, "There seems to be some sense in what you are saying, but it is a school discipline. If you stop using caps, then others will stop."
I said, "Then what is the fear? Just drop the whole old convention."
Nobody wants to allow you to be yourself on matters which are absolutely insignificant.
I used to have long hair in my childhood. And I used to come in and out of my father's shop, because the shop and the home were connected. The home was behind the shop and it was absolutely necessary to pass through the shop. People would ask, "Whose girl is this?" -- because my hair was so long, they could not think that a boy should be having such long hair.
My father felt very ashamed and embarrassed to say, "He is a boy."
But they said, "Then why all this hair?"
One day -- it was not his normal nature -- he became so embarrassed and angry that he came and cut my hair with his own hands. Bringing the scissors with which he used to cut cloth in his shop, he cut my hair. I didn't say anything to him -- he was surprised. He said, "You don't have anything to say?"
I said, "I will say it in my own way."
"So what do you mean?"
I said, "You will see." And I went to the opium-addict barber who used to have a shop just in front of our house. He was the only man I had a respect for. There were a row of barber shops, but I loved that old man. He was a rare variety, and he loved me; for hours we used to talk to each other. What he was saying was all nonsense! One day he was saying to me, "If all the opium addicts can be organized into a political party, we can take over this country!"
I said, "It is a good idea."
But he said, "Because we are all opium addicts, I myself forget my own idea."
I said, "You don't be worried. I am here and I will remember. You just tell me what changes you want to have in the country, what kind of political ideology you want, and I will manage it."
He said, "That's good."
So I went to him and I told him, "Just shave my whole head completely." In India the head is shaved completely only when your father dies.
For a moment even that opium addict came to his senses. He said, "What has happened?
Has your father died?"
I said, "Don't bother about these things. You do what I am saying; it is none of your concern! You just cut my hair completely, shave it completely."
He said, "Done! That is the easiest job. So many times I get into trouble. People say to me, 'Shave the beard,' and I forget and I shave their heads. They say, 'What have you done?' And I say, 'At the most I can say to you don't pay for it -- what is the problem?'" I used to sit in his shop, because there was always something so ridiculous happening. He would cut half the mustache of somebody and would say, "Wait, I have remembered some urgent work." And the man would say, "But I am caught here in your chair and half the mustache is gone. I cannot go out of the shop!" He would say, "Simply wait there."
And then hours will pass and that man is sitting there..."What kind of idiot is this man?"
At one time I had to help by cutting the half mustache of a man. I said, "Now you are free. Just never come back here again... because that man has not done much harm to you, he just forgets."
So the barber said, "That's right. It is none of my concern. If he has died, he has died."
He shaved my head completely, and I went home. I passed through the shop. My father looked and all his customers looked. They said, "What happened? Whose boy is this? His father has died."
My father said, "He is my boy and I am alive! But I knew he was going to do something.
He has answered me well."
Wherever I went people would ask, "What happened? He was perfectly healthy."
I said, "People die at any age. You are worried about him, you are not worried about my hairs."
That was the last thing my father ever did to me, because he knew that the answer could be more dangerous! On the contrary, he brought a certain oil that is used for growing hair. It is a very costly oil, comes from Bengal out of a certain flower, javakusum. It is very costly, rare, used only by the richest people -- and not by men but by women -- to keep the hair as long as possible. In Bengal I have come across women whose hair touched the earth -- five feet long, six feet long. That oil simply functions powerfully on the hairs.
I said, "Now you understand."
He said, "I have understood. You use this oil quickly; in a few months your hair will be back."
I said, "You created the whole mess. What was there to be embarrassed about? You could have said, 'She is my girl.' I don't have any objection about that. But you should not have interfered with me the way you did. It was violent, barbarous. Rather than saying anything to me, you simply started cutting my hair."
Nobody allows anybody to be just himself. And you have learned all those ideas so deeply that it seems they are your ideas. Just relax. Forget all those conditionings, drop them like dry leaves falling from the trees. It is better to be a naked tree without any leaves than to have plastic leaves and plastic foliage and plastic flowers; that is ugly.
The original face simply means that you are not being dominated by any kind of morality, religion, society, parents, teachers, priests, not being dominated by anyone. Just living your life according to your own inner sense -- you have a sensibility -- and you will have the original face.
The young teacher wrote on the blackboard, "I ain't had no fun all summer." Then she asked the children, "What is wrong with that sentence and what do I do to correct it?"
Little Ernie shouted from the back, "Get a boyfriend."
The sentence will be corrected by itself -- just get a boyfriend!
This is the simple original face; it doesn't bother about consequences. But England is perhaps the most attached to false personalities....
Elizabeth and Philip had been married for a considerable time, and it became particularly apparent to Philip that Elizabeth had lost all enthusiasm for their lovemaking.
On a recent occasion, Philip was making love to his wife when he suddenly said, "Is something the matter? Are you hurt?"
"No, I'm all right," answered Elizabeth. "Why do you ask?"
"Oh," said Philip, "for a moment there, I thought you moved."
People have become absolutely dead. And Veena comes from that same lot of lunatics!
Just enjoy and be at ease with yourself and with the world, and the original face starts shining by itself.
When the doctor had finished his examination of the woman, he looked up and said brightly, "Mrs. Brown, I have good news for you."
"I'm glad of that, doctor," said the woman, "But I am MISS Brown."
"Miss Brown," said the doctor, without changing expression, "I have bad news for you."
There are many people whose expressions will not change. Now such a great change -- from Mrs. Brown to Miss Brown -- but the doctor is keeping his personality, his face, absolutely without change.
Whenever I look at Veena I feel very sad for her... no expression, sits just like a marble statue. She is beautiful. She will make a good model if you want to make a marble statue.
But it seems she is holding back from life; she is not allowing the playfulness and the joy that are our birthright. That is why the words 'original face' strike her. It looks immensely intriguing -- but she cannot understand what it means. It does not mean another face; it simply means no face imposed upon that which you have got from nature itself.
One needs a little courage, a little daring, just to be himself whatever the circumstances.
And on the whole, every circumstance and every consequence -- even if you have to suffer -- will enrich your individuality, will make your intelligence sharper, will give you a sense of direction which comes from your own inner being and is not given by some guide from outside.
EVERY TIME I MANAGE TO CLUTCH A STRAW YOU STEP ON MY FINGERS.
MY BRAIN IS TOTALLY SCRAMBLED. MY WHOLE WORLD SEEMS UNREAL.
YOU GOT ME INTO THIS MESS -- ARE YOU GOING TO GET ME OUT, OR IS THAT UP TO ME?
Prem Nayana, the first thing is: I am going to get you into a deeper mess, because unless you touch the rock bottom of your mess, it is very difficult to get out of it.
Do you know how to swim? Have you ever drowned in a river? -- and what happens?
You have to go first to the bottom and then at the bottom you are thrown up. That is why dead people know the secret but the living people don't. You will not see any dead person drowning -- he simply floats, and living people get drowned. They say they don't know swimming, but dead people are swimming perfectly well!
So as far as I am concerned I am not going to get you out of the mess. I will manage every way to take you to the rock bottom, then you will pop up on your own.
And what do you mean, "Every time I manage to clutch a straw you step on my fingers"?
Just don't clutch at any straw. It is so easy...! And you know me perfectly well. I will not let you clutch at any straw, because those straws are not going to save you; I will step on your fingers. You cannot make me stop, but you can do one thing: stop clutching at straws.
She is speaking in a very poetic way. To translate it into pragmatic language, she is saying that whenever she starts believing in some principle, I demolish it. Whenever she starts creating a system of beliefs and finds a consolation in that belief system, I destroy it.
My way of creating goes through a long passage of destroying, because the real work is to destroy -- and then you will come out of it. You don't have to be created. You are there already, dumped with so much garbage that I have to take that garbage away. And you are clutching...!
Never try to make a system of beliefs out of what I am saying. If you understand me well, I am not a system maker and I don't want believers, I don't want followers. I don't want anybody to think that I am the savior.
I don't even shave my own beard! Nirvano goes on saying to me, "I can trim it a little."
I say, "No, absolutely no! These are my original hairs. I have never shaved my beard.
They are the same original hairs as when they first had started growing in my youth, and I am going to keep them to the very last."
She feels worried that they will become thinner, that this beard will become too long. I said, "Don't be worried. Even if it starts touching the ground, I am always in favor of the original."
One very essential thing which I have been telling you, but I have to repeat it, is: Feel me more than my words, feel my presence more than my presentation. I am not a philosopher. I am incurably a mystic. There is no medicine which can cure me.
But if you go on... and this has happened with thousands of people; in these thirty years I must have come across millions of people, but they were all seeking some savior -- and I walked on their fingers. They were all seeking somebody to take away their responsibility, without knowing that the moment your responsibility is gone, your freedom is also gone. They exist together; they are inseparable.
If you want freedom, you have to accept every responsibility. If you want freedom, you don't have to clutch with your hands onto any belief, philosophy, religion. You just be yourself. Why can't you enjoy yourself consciously? There is no intrinsic necessity for having a belief.
Thousands of people have come to me and gone. There was a time I was surrounded by Jainas. Unfortunately I was born in a Jaina family, so naturally my first audience was of Jainas. They were immensely happy because I was saying things which they had never thought about, I was interpreting their scriptures in a totally new way. They had great hope in me. They thought that...
Their religion has remained very small; it is the smallest religion in India. And it is the ancientmost religion -- it is more ancient than Hinduism. But what calamity has happened? Even today there are not more than thirty-five lakhs of Jainas in a country of nine hundred million people. What has happened? Jainism is at least seven thousand years old -- that is at least. It can be more, older, because in Harrappur and in Mohanjodro two ancient cities have been excavated, and Jaina statues have been found in those cities.
Now it is a scientific fact that those cities were destroyed somewhere between seven thousand and ten thousand years ago, and that is a very conservative estimate. But even if we take that estimate, in ten thousand years the population of the Jainas has remained negligible -- thirty-five lakhs. That is not worth any consideration! That is why in the great religions of the world Jainism is never counted -- never counted with Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism. They are great religions, and they are all very new as far as Jainism is concerned.
Because of my interpretations they had a tremendous hope in me, that perhaps I may spread their religion to the whole world, take the message to the whole world. But they were unaware -- they were my first audience -- they were not aware what kind of man I am: I cannot support anything which my heart is not ready to support.
So a few things I have supported in Jainism -- people were very happy. But the moment I started telling about things which I cannot support, they were shocked. I have walked on their fingers. Just a small thing -- which is so rational -- and the Jaina community... their supreme command decided to expel me. I wrote a letter to them saying, "Don't be stupid.
I expel you all from my life. You don't have to expel me; you cannot. I am no more part of you."
And what was the reason? I addressed a Jaina conference and told them, "You are the oldest vegetarians of the world. You eat the purest food, but you have not produced a single Nobel prize winner. What is your contribution to art, to music, to science, to mathematics, to painting, to poetry? What is your contribution to the world? There are the Jews who get forty percent of all the Nobel prizes, and the rest of the world has to live only on sixty percent."
And I told them, "The reason is -- I have deeply enquired into the matter -- that in vegetarian food something is missing which is necessary for intelligence. That is why you have remained retarded."
Vegetarian food is not complete, and particularly for intelligence certain vitamins are missing. Those vitamins can be found in meat. Certainly I cannot support non-vegetarian food. Even though it gives you better intelligence, it destroys your very soul; it makes you cruel, violent, inhuman.
So I suggested to them, "I have found something which should be immediately accepted if any intelligence is left in you, and that is eating eggs which are not fertilized, non- fertilized eggs. They are not living, there is no life. If you leave them they will simply rot and disappear. There is no life in them because the male sperm has not entered into the mother's egg; the mother has grown the egg without the male sperm. It is not alive, so there is no harm in eating it. It is vegetarian."
Suddenly they were very angry. I am suggesting for them to eat eggs, and they are afraid even to eat tomatoes, because tomatoes look like meat -- just the color, poor tomatoes...
How can they conceive of themselves eating non-fertilized eggs? Somebody stood up and said, "Maybe that is right that they are not living, but they are coming from animals."
I said, "So is milk; what is the difference? If you are avoiding anything that is coming from any living being, your children are from the very beginning against Jainism; they are drinking their mother's milk. And you are drinking milk" -- and Jainas drink milk and milk-made products more than anybody. They cannot enjoy meat and non-vegetarian foods, so to substitute they have invented thousands of ways of delicacies made of milk products.
But the very word 'egg' was enough for them to leave me completely; the Jainas disappeared. I was dangerous! I was teaching something that they have never done in ten thousand years. No scripture of theirs suggests anything about it. But they were absolutely unable to answer my questions -- "If you are eating the purest food, your intelligence should have been the purest flame, the sharpest genius, the most creative, but it has not been so." And immediately -- they had come to me because they thought I was supporting their system, but I am not supporting anybody's system -- they disappeared.
Then the second gang was of Gandhians. For a little while it was okay, but the moment I criticized Mahatma Gandhi... nobody had any answer for it, but the Gandhians disappeared. I had stepped on their fingers! And as the Gandhians disappeared, immediately socialists, communists gathered around me, not knowing that the same is going to be their fate.
Of course, from each group a few courageous people have remained. A few Jains have remained, a few Gandhians have remained, who had the intelligence to understand that I am not against anybody, but I cannot support anything which is fundamentally wrong, and is harmful to human life.
The communists were very happy, because they were in search of a man... The only calamity for the communists in India is that they don't have a saintly figure. They don't attract the masses, and the masses will never be attracted to communists, because they cannot think that someone who is speaking to them and also smoking a cigarette and putting it in the ashtray in between can be a leader. This is impossible for the Indian masses. And because communists don't believe in God, are against all religions, Indians cannot have any communion with them.
You will be surprised that in the Russian revolution there was one Indian as important as Lenin himself. His name was Edmund Roy; he was an international figure in the communist movement. Thinking that he was so much respected internationally by the communists, he came to India, back to his home, and here he came in conflict with Mahatma Gandhi immediately. He was right on many more points than Mahatma Gandhi, but that is not how the masses decide. He smoked cigarettes, he drank vodka, he has lived in Russia, he believed in violence: he is intolerable!
So when the communists saw that the Gandhians were angry with me, they thought it was an opportunity. If I can be their representative, it will be an immense help for them to gain power in India, because they have heard that I don't believe in any religions; they have heard there is no God, no heaven, no hell. They felt, "This seems to be perfectly agreeing with us."
In fact, my emphasis was far deeper than their own philosophy. So when I said that there are no religions, but there is something higher than religion and that is religiousness; there is no God as a person, but as a presence, and the whole universe is full of godliness... I walked on their fingers! Immediately all communists disappeared from my audience. But a few courageous souls have remained, and have become accustomed to my stepping on their fingers. And they have learned one secret:
With me it is not ideas that matter.
With me it is your transformation that matters.
And your transformation is possible only if your mind slowly, slowly becomes calm and quiet.
So now I have my own people. But once in a while a stranger accidentally gets caught.
Now I have been enquiring about that sannyasin Piyoosh, whether he has reached Igatpuri and Goenka or not; otherwise he should be loaded in a truck and sent to Igatpuri.
This is not his place. But he is hiding. He has not approached the office. He has not approached Swami Dhyan Yogi, who initiates sannyasins, to return his papers. So once in a while somebody who does not understand my way of working, gets into unnecessary trouble.
I am not interested in how many people are meditating; it is not my responsibility. I am fulfilled and absolutely content. If death comes this moment I will not even tell death, "Wait a few minutes more; let me finish my speech." What is the point? I am always ready; in the middle of the sentence I can stop. I have no desires, no longings, no stupid superiority complex of being a prophet or a messiah or a messenger of God. That is why I can speak to you now heart to heart.
When I call you my people, it simply means you are no longer Hindus, no longer Christians, no longer Jews, that you have dropped all that rubbish away, that you have come to me as an individual on your own authority. And I will not give you new chains to console you.
You are saying to me, "You got me into this mess." You are wrong, Prem Nayana, you got into this mess on your own accord. I never go and knock on people's doors -- but it is so easy to throw away the responsibility, without knowing you are throwing away your freedom too. I cannot accept the responsibility because I cannot destroy your freedom. I love you too much.
And now you are saying, "You got me into this mess -- are you going to get me out, or is it up to me?" It has been always up to you whether to get into the mess or get out of it. It is none of my business. I have never bothered.... Millions of people have passed by my side, people who were ready to die for me, or were ready to kill me just if I said something that went against their prejudices -- the same people.
It has been a tremendously rich life of experiences, but now I am absolutely finished with taking anybody's responsibility, destroying anybody's freedom. You are here on your own accord. Whatever happens to you, you are responsible; it is happening out of your freedom. I respect your freedom so much that I cannot take the responsibility.
Just meditate over the whole matter, and you will see this is not a place where one gets into a mess; this is a place where we dry-clean you! All the mess that you bring with you, we take it away... slowly, so it does not hurt you too much. But one has to be very alert and very intelligent if he wants to remain with me. I am not here for retarded idiots.
The worried wife came to the doctor and said, "Doctor, I don't know what is wrong with my husband. He has sudden changes. Monday he liked milk-pudding, Tuesday he liked milk-pudding, Wednesday he liked milk-pudding, Thursday he liked milk-pudding, and all of a sudden, today he does not like milk-pudding."
This is not the place for such idiots, who can't understand simple things.
Moishe Finkelstein met his old friend Sam Feigenbaum on the street in Moscow.
"Did you hear," said Moishe, "that old Yossel Mosovith has died?"
"No," said Sam, "I did not even hear that he had been arrested."
A man was having his fiftieth birthday and his wife wanted to give him something really special. They had been married for twenty-five years and had the perfect marriage.
"What's something you have never had on your birthday?" she asked.
He looked coy and she said, "Come on, it is okay -- anything you want."
"Well," he said, "I have never had a whore."
"Okay," she said, "I will get you the best."
So she booked him a very classy whore for the whole night. When he came home the next day she asked, "Did you enjoy yourself?"
"Yes," he said shyly.
"Well, did she do anything I don't do?"
"Yes," he said modestly.
"Well, what was it?" she said.
"She moaned," said the husband.
So the next time they were making love, the wife kept saying, "Shall I moan yet?"
"Not yet," he would say.
Then finally he was about to climax and he said, "Okay start moaning, start moaning!"
So the wife said, "Oh my God! I have had a terrible day, your mother came, the vacuum cleaner broke, my hair is a mess...."
Prem Nayana, this is a place of laughter and love, of joy and celebration. According to me it is the only holy place in the world. Just be careful not to clutch any straw, because then I cannot resist the temptation of stepping on your fingers. The responsibility is yours.
The Great Pilgrimage: From Here to Here