From Ignorance to Innocence 22

TwentySecond Discourse from the series of 30 discourses - From Ignorance to Innocence by Osho.
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You have been speaking about the importance of being oneself. Could you talk about the paradox of being an individual and melting into the commune?
There is no paradox as such, as far as the individual and his melting into the commune is concerned. The question has arisen out of a confusion between two words: individuality and personality.
Yes, with personality there is trouble. The personality cannot melt into anything – into love, into meditation, into friendship. The reason is that the personality is a very thin mask given to the individual by the society. And every society’s effort has been, up till now, to deceive you and everybody, and to focus your attention on the personality as if it is your individuality. The personality is that which is given by others to you.
Individuality is that which you are born with which is your self nature: nobody can give it to you, and nobody can take it away.
Personality can be given and can be taken away. Hence, when you become identified with your personality you start becoming afraid of losing it. So anywhere when you see that a boundary has come beyond which you will have to melt, the personality withdraws. It cannot go beyond the limit it knows. It is very thin, an imposed layer. In deep love it will evaporate. In great friendship it will not be found at all.
In any kind of communion the death of the personality is absolute.
And you feel identified with the personality: you have been told that you are this by your parents, teachers, neighbors, friends – they have all been molding your personality, giving a shape to it. And they have made something of you which you are not and which you can never be. Hence you are miserable, confined in this personality. This is your imprisonment. But you are also afraid to come out of it because you don’t know that you have anything more than this.
It is almost a situation like this: you think your clothes are you. Then naturally you will be afraid to stand naked. It is not a question only of the fear of dropping the clothes, but the fear that if you drop the clothes there will be nobody, and everybody will see that there is emptiness, you are hollow within. Your clothes go on giving you substance. The personality is afraid, and it is very natural that it should be afraid.
As far as individuality is concerned, once you know your individuality… And my religion is nothing but a process of individuation, finding, discovering your individuality. And in that finding – this is the most important step – you discard personality, you take away the identity; you withdraw from the personality and you start looking at it from a distance.
Create that distance between you and personality.
You have come so close that you cannot see the separation. Once you have understood that you are somebody other than your personality… You have been thinking up to now that you were somebody else: You are A, and you have been thinking up to now that you are B. That fallacy is bound to be afraid, that fallacy cannot be in love – there is no possibility.
That’s why lovers are constantly in conflict. It is not their individualities conflicting, it is their personalities in conflict. Both want the other to melt, and both are afraid that if they melt they are lost, they are gone.
Friendship has disappeared from the world just as love has disappeared, because friendship is possible only when you meet naked, as you are – not as people want you to be, not as you should be, but simply just as you are. When two persons open up to each other just as they are, friendship grows.
When two persons are ready to drop their masks, they have taken a tremendous step toward religiousness. So love, friendship, anything that helps you to drop the mask, is taking you toward religion.
But the pseudo-religions have done just the opposite. They are against love. You can understand now, why they are against love: because love will destroy the personality, and the pseudo-religion depends on your personality. The pseudo-religions have made a great effort – all these churches and priests and sermons – and what are they doing? Their whole work is to create the personality. They manufacture personality – of course, different kinds of personality: a Hindu personality, a Christian personality, a Mohammedan personality. These are different models of personalities. All these religions are just like factories creating different models of cars, but the function is the same.
The pseudo-religions are all afraid of love. They talk about love, and they teach you marriage. They talk about love and they say marriages are made in heaven. It is not something that you have to find out; God has already found the person for you. The astrologer will help you, the palmist will help you, the priest will help you, the parents will help you to find them – because God has already created the person for you, you are not to find the person on your own.
They prevent you from loving, and they go on saying great things about love. But their great words about love are bogus; they have no substance in them.
Jesus says, “God is love.” There is no God – then what about love? So as far as Jesus’ love is concerned, there is no love. If God is love, then with God’s disappearance love also disappears.
And to make God synonymous with love is a beautiful strategy. He has raised love to such a high pedestal – do you think it can happen between a man and a woman? God is going to happen when you fall in love? That is sin!
God is love when you love humanity, when you love words which don’t mean anything. Have you ever met humanity anywhere? Can you imagine that someday you will encounter humanity? You will meet only human beings. Humanity is simply a word.
“Love humanity” – it gives you the idea of something abstract. “Love God, love truth” – the sentences seem to be linguistically right, but existentially they mean nothing.
And you have to remember it: that most of our beautiful words are only words. You can play with them, you can create poetry, but you cannot live them because words cannot be lived. There is nothing living in them.
Now, just think of the idea: “Love God.” What does it mean? How does one fall in love with God? You have not seen God. You don’t know him. How are you going to recognize that this fellow is God?

I was watching a film, The Difficulties of an Ordinary God. It is a beautiful film. A man starts seeing a very ordinary God, just like an old hobo, with a hat cricketers use. Now, God in a hat which cricketers use! And he looks also like a cricket player. He is very old, but must have been in his young days a cricket player. And when God declared to this man, “You don’t recognize me: I am God, I created the world,” the man said, “My God! You created the world! Don’t say it to anybody otherwise people will think you are mad.”
But the old man insisted, he said, “You want some proof?”
The young man said, “I don’t want any proof. Just seeing you is enough to know that you are no God. This is not the way – that God suddenly stops you on the way; that you are going somewhere and he wants a lift! This is a strange meeting. I have heard about the God Moses met on the mountain and Jesus heard from the sky, and Mohammed – but God asking for a lift?”
But the old man was stubborn, he said, “I will give you proof.” And he gives him proof: he simply disappears.
The young man looks all around – he was in the car sitting by his side – he is not there! He says, “My God! Perhaps he really was God, but what a funny God! And I missed the opportunity.”
The old man appeared again, he said, “Look, when I was gone you started thinking you had missed an opportunity.”
But seeing him again the young man said, “You did some trick, you must know some magic. But I cannot accept you as God. Your clothes seem to be purchased from a secondhand place, or you have stolen them. They don’t fit you, they are too loose and too dirty – as if you have not taken a bath for many years.”
But the old man said, “God is so pure that he does not need any bath or anything. And of course the clothes are very old, because I am very old. I have told you that I created the world; at that time I created these clothes. Since then I have not created anything, so they are very ancient.”
The young man said, “What to do about you? Where do you want to get out?”
He said, “Anywhere, because I am everywhere.”
The young man said, “Then why did you want a lift?”
He said, “Just because I see a potential in you, that you can become my messenger.”
The young man said, “My God! Your messenger? If I say to anybody that you are God they will think I am mad!”
But God said, “Try,” gave his picture to him and disappeared.
The young man looked at the picture and said, “It is better to keep silent about the whole thing. Either I am hallucinating, dreaming…”
He came home. His wife looked at him and said, “You look very worried.”
He said, “No, nothing, there is nothing.”
She said, “But you look very worried and pale and afraid, as if you have seen some ghost or something.”
He said, “My God! You think I have seen something?” He took out the picture and showed the wife: “Can you recognize this man?”
She said, “He looks like a hobo – perhaps an old cricket player, or maybe he just got a hat from some old clothes store. And what kind of clothes…? Where did you find this picture, and why did you bring it home?”
He said, “Can you keep this thing secret? I have something to tell you. Close the door. This man is God. He asked for a lift.”
His wife looked at her husband and said, “Wait, I will phone the doctor. What are you saying? – God asking for a lift in your car? And he has given this picture to you?”
He said, “Yes, he has given this picture to me so that I can become his messenger. He wants me to become his messenger.”
The wife said, “The first thing is, meet the doctor.”
He tried hard: “I am perfectly sane, there is no problem.”
But the wife said, “If you think this man is God, it is certain that there is some problem!”
So she takes him to the doctor, and the doctor is also puzzled. He said, “I have seen many ideas about God but this is an absolutely novel idea. Where did you get this picture?”
He said, “From God himself. He himself gave it to me by his own hand; and he has shown a miracle too.” And he told them about the miracle.
The wife, the doctor, the nurses, they all laughed; they said, “This is…!”
So he said, “Wait.” He raised his eyes upward and said, “God, now please help me – because these are all my friends. The doctor is my friend, the family doctor; my wife, the nurse – there is nobody from the outside, we are all like family. Please appear, otherwise they are all going to think that I am mad.” And suddenly the man came out from the ceiling!
They all looked at him, and he said, “Wherever you need me I will be present; you just go on spreading the word.”
But he said, “This is a very difficult word, just because of your picture. Can’t you dress a little better?”
But he said, “No, this are my clothes, and this is the way I am.”
Now, four or five people had seen him and they were all shocked: “This man is not mad, there is something in it.” The whole town became agog with the rumor that five people had seen God. And the thing became so hot that the church became immediately annoyed and irritated thinking that this was a joke. “This man, and God!” The picture was printed in the newspapers and everybody was laughing: “If this is God, then everything is finished.”
The problem became so much that the church had to call a meeting of the elders and force this man who was the messenger to appear before the council and prove that this was God. He tried, he told them, “Many times he has showed me miracles. Just this morning when I was shaving in my bathroom, a doubt arose in me that perhaps something was wrong with me; it was possible that I was simply fantasizing. And he immediately looked at me from the mirror. My picture disappeared and his picture was there in the mirror, and he said, ‘Again I go on giving you proof, and you are again doubting.’”
And then at the church, the young man appeared before the church council. The high priest was there, and they were determined to punish this man if… And they said, “You say that this man is God?”
He said, “I have to say it. I have seen him many times. He has shown me many miracles. This morning he appeared in my mirror.” Everybody laughed, and this poor man said, “He has chosen me as his messenger.”
They said, “This time he has really chosen a great messenger! Moses, Mohammed, Buddha, Jesus – they were some people – but this man is just a clerk in a railway station. Now what qualities have you got that he would choose you as the messenger?”
He said, “I don’t know. I don’t have any qualities, and I have never dreamed in my life that God would choose me. But he has chosen me and he has promised that if there is a need he will come to support me.”
So the church council asked, “Then let him appear.”
And they all were amazed that the door behind the priest opened, and God appeared. There was silence for a moment. Seeing God, the priest gathered courage and said, “You think you are God?”
He said, “I don’t think, I am. And this is my messenger. But,” He said, “you can understand the difficulties of an ordinary God. I am an ordinary God, that’s why I have chosen an ordinary messenger, because to find an extraordinary messenger would be very difficult for me. You can see I am an ordinary, poor God. So don’t be angry with this poor clerk; what he is saying is absolutely right.”

How are you going to recognize God if he meets you in a cricketer’s hat? – and of course he will be wearing some kind of hat – or without a hat. If he is like me, bald, then he will be using a hat, some kind of hat.

This reminds me of the man I have been talking to you about: my geography teacher, Chotelal Munde. He had cursed me because I made him famous as “Munde”; so much so that once he had to sign himself as Chotelal Munde. That day he was just fire… I had asked the whole class for a collection. Twenty rupees were collected, and we made a money order in Chotelal Munde’s name. And we arranged with the postman, “Come into his class when he is taking our class” – we gave him the time. So he appeared exactly on time, with a twenty-rupee money order, sender anonymous.
Chotelal Munde was a poor man with a big family. He could not lose twenty rupees. In those days twenty rupees was a lot of money. In India, in those days, a man could live on two rupees for the whole month, things were so cheap. Before the First World War things were so cheap that servants used to get one rupee, two rupees, three rupees a month at the most. And that was enough. Twenty rupees…
But the postman said, “You will have to sign ‘Chotelal Munde’, because it is in the name of Chotelal Munde.”
He thought for a moment, and he said, “I know who this anonymous sender is. He is here, and I will teach him a lesson because now he has forced me even to sign ‘Munde.’” And he had to sign; he signed “Chotelal Munde.” Then he came to me and he said, “I curse you, that one day you will become bald headed just like me.”
I said, “That’s perfectly okay. There is no harm in it.”
And he said, “Anonymous!”
I remembered him just a few days ago when Sheela brought a newspaper which said that in Oregon people have found a new word for a rascal: Rajneeshee. That was Chotelal Munde’s second curse, that “You will be known as ‘the rascal.’”
I said, “This is perfectly good.” Both his predictions have come true.

If you meet God in any dress, in any form, you will not be able to accept him, because there is no way for you to recognize him. There has never been any way to recognize him. That’s why I say Jesus and Moses and Mohammed were all hallucinating. They had no grounds to declare that that was God’s voice because they had never heard it before. So what evidence was there that this voice was God’s voice? If they saw somebody standing before them, how did they recognize that this person was God? There was no way.
Jesus says, “God is love.” But God is unproved, just a vague word. He makes love also a vague, meaningless word. Between you and God, what kind of love will happen? What will be the relationship between you and God? All the religions have tried to find some kind of relationship with God. Many religions call him father. There are a few which call him mother. There are a few which call him the beloved; for them he is a she, not a he.
In India there is a religion which believes that he is a lover and they are his beloveds. These people who believe God to be their lover and themselves to be his beloveds – in the day of course they are ashamed so they cannot move about in women’s clothes, but in the night they do wear women’s clothes, because the lover will be coming to meet them. And they sleep with a statue of Krishna, their lover.
Now what kinds of foolishness have been going on for centuries? And it is not that these people are idiots. Very scholarly people are among them, very learned, but there is a blind spot. In every religious – so-called religious – person’s mind there is a blind spot. Everywhere else is light, but on that spot is complete darkness. Just as there are people who are color-blind, these people, in a certain way, in a certain aspect of their mind, are blind.

Bernard Shaw was color-blind. He came to know it when he was sixty. For sixty years such an intelligent man was not aware that he was color-blind. On his sixtieth birthday somebody sent him a present, a suit, but the person forgot to send him a matching tie. So with his secretary he went to the market, because he liked the coat, the pants – everything was really the best available. So he went with his secretary to find a matching tie for it. And when he was looking for the tie – the suit was yellow – he looked at a green tie.
The woman secretary nudged him and told him, “This won’t look right: a green tie on a yellow suit. It will look odd.”
The shopkeeper also said, “Yes sir, she is right. I was also worried about that.”
He said, “But isn’t it the same color? – my suit and this tie?”
They said, “No, this is green and this is yellow.”
He said, “My God! I have never in my whole life thought that these are two different colors.” He was blind to green; it appeared to him as yellow. Green did not exist for him at all. Many people remain color-blind their whole life and never come to know about it. It was just a coincidence… If he had passed sixty years he could have passed forty more; there was no problem in it. It was just a coincidence.

In the same way, every pseudo-religion creates a blind spot in your mind, and from that blind spot it goes on manipulating you. That blind spot creates your personality; and because the blind spot creates your personality you can’t see anything wrong in it.
It is all wrong for the simple reason that it is not you; it is something glued over you. It fulfills other people’s needs – it destroys you completely. And naturally when you are covered by a painted paper you will be afraid to go in the rain. You know that you will start disappearing.
The question is: on the one hand I teach you individuality, on the other hand I teach you to melt with the commune. There seems to be a paradox; there is none.
The personality is afraid; hence the personality will prevent you from melting in all the situations where melting is needed. And it seems absolutely logical that the personality should be afraid. But individuality is never afraid of melting, because it is your nature; there is no way to lose it.
You can melt in the commune, and by melting you will simply be more authentically individual than you were before. The very step – that you dared to melt – is going to throw away your personality, and only the individuality will remain.
Individuality is your intrinsic nature. Nobody can take it, nobody can steal it. If it were possible to take it away, society would have taken it away already; they would not have taken any chances. They would have taken the individuality from every child as he was born. But because it cannot be taken away, there is no way, they have tried another strategy: cover it. It can only be covered or uncovered.
I teach you to melt in the commune because that will uncover you. It will destroy your personality. If you are too attached, you will find excuses for not melting, but those excuses are coming from your personality, not from your individuality. And the sooner the personality melts the better, because out of that melting you will find for the first time who you are. And you will be surprised that all along you have been playing a role which was prompted by the society, by the educationist, by the priest, by the parents. They were all prompting you, manufacturing you for a certain career.

I was staying in a friend’s house in Amritsar. Early in the morning I went into the garden. My friend’s young child, not more than eight years old, was also there picking flowers. Seeing me, he came to me and we started talking. I asked him, “What are you going to become in life?”
And he said, “My mother wants me to become a doctor, my father wants me to become an engineer, my uncle wants me to become a scientist, my younger sister wants me to become the prime minister; and as far as I am concerned, nobody asks me. And I don’t know either. If somebody asks the way you have asked, I don’t know who I want to become.”

But this is the situation of every child. He is being dragged by others, forced by others this way and that. Of course he lands somewhere, he becomes something, but he loses his being. In this becoming, he has lost his most precious treasure.
Hence, I teach you melting with the commune. The commune is only a device for you to melt. What will be melting will not be really you, only your personality. And what will emerge out of that will be you.
But right now you don’t know who you are. And the one you think you are, you are not. That which you are not is going to melt, certainly. And that which you are is going to be a revelation, to you and to everybody. That is going to be a finding; and it brings tremendous joy, ecstasy.
In just coming to know who you are, all your fears, phobias, and mind problems simply disappear, evaporate, because they were part of the personality.
All your inner conflicts are no longer there.
There is only harmony and a silence which is so profound that there is no way to imagine it. And to see one’s original being is to see all that is worth seeing, because from there the door opens toward existence.
So I am teaching you everything that will help you to melt. I teach you love, not marriage. I teach you friendship, or even better, friendliness. I teach you melting with the commune.
The commune is not the family. You are born in a family… You have to understand a little bit about the family. The family is a very strange institution, and one of the most poisonous institutions. The parents think they own you. The mother thinks she has given birth to you, the father thinks he has given birth to you: you are his blood.

It was a continual problem in my childhood with my parents. I would object whenever they would mention or indicate indirectly that I belonged to them. I said, “That’s absolutely wrong. Forget the idea of possessing me. Yes, I have come through you, but just because of that you don’t become my possessor; I am not your possession. A child comes through you: you are a passage. If passages started possessing, then any road you pass by will call to you, ‘Where are you going? I possess you, I have brought you here.’”
My parents would say, “You can say anything you want to say to us, but such things, not in front of others. If anybody hears that you are telling your father, ‘You are just a road’…”
I said, “But I have to say these things because you provoke me; the whole fault lies in you. You start – of course unconsciously, but you start thinking that you possess me.” He wanted me to become a scientist, and I told him, “You should leave it to me. I am now mature enough to decide in what direction to go. And I am thankful that you have brought me up to this point; but now, leave me alone. And this I am not saying out of any ungratefulness; I am grateful that you have made me capable of choosing my path. But one day I have to tell you: ‘Now, leave me alone.’ It is shocking, it hurts, but what to do? You are the cause because you have raised the expectation that this is what you would like.”
He was rarely angry with me, but on that point he was very angry; and he was right in everybody’s eyes. The whole family was in agreement with him. The neighborhood was in agreement with him, “What is the point in going to an arts college and studying philosophy? You will be good for nothing.”
In India many universities have closed their philosophy departments, and other universities which still have a philosophy department only get girls as their students. I myself was with two girls – only three students. And girls join it for a different purpose: because in the philosophy department the professors are continuously in need of students, they are afraid to fail anybody. If people don’t come then their department is closed, and they will be unemployed; so they persuade students to come. And for girls in India, a degree is only for marriage. A postgraduate girl will get a rich husband, a cultured family. She will move in the highest circles immediately. She has nothing to do with philosophy.
One of my professors was a Bengali, and he believed in celibacy – fanatically. In departments of philosophy you will find all kinds of strange creatures. Whether it was raining or not, whether it was hot or not, sun or not, he would walk with his umbrella just covering almost his face so he did not have to see any woman. The university was full of girls, and in his class there were two girls. Because of those two girls, he used to teach with closed eyes.
For me that was a great opportunity; I used to sleep. For six months it went perfectly well. One day the girls didn’t turn up, but that was my time to sleep, so I went to sleep. That day he was teaching with open eyes – I did not think that he would teach with his eyes open. So he said, “You can open your eyes. I know you also believe in celibacy.”
I said, “For six months you were thinking this? I was simply sleeping. I believe in sleeping, not in celibacy.”
He said, “This is strange; I was thinking you are just like me, and I was feeling great respect for you. You deceived me for six months.”
I said, “I will deceive you in future too. It is not a deception, this is just my time to sleep. And it was good that you were teaching with your eyes closed, so there was no trouble, no conflict – because nobody was listening.
“Those girls are not interested in philosophy in any way, and what you are teaching is so much crap that once in a while in my sleep when I hear it, I just throw it out. And those two girls have nothing to do… You can teach, you are paid for it. But those girls are just earning a degree so that they can get a good marriage partner.
“I come here just to sleep, and you come here to teach; our ideas are different. I don’t say to you, ‘Don’t disturb me,’ and I don’t disturb you either. I am sound asleep and I don’t snore. Have I ever snored?”
He said, “You are strange, you drive me nuts! You take the question in such a direction where I have nothing… Now you are asking about snoring. Come to the point.”
I said, “I am exactly on the point. I am saying, have I ever disturbed you? If I have not disturbed you then what is the complaint against me? I could have not listened to you with open eyes. That’s what those two girls are doing, but they are not interested in philosophy at all. While you are teaching with your closed eyes, they are talking about clothes, about their saris, and inquiring where to get this from, and how much…? That’s what they are doing.
“Am I such a fool that I should listen to those two girls and you? Only I am caught in between. So I simply sleep; that’s the only way to escape from all this. And you know perfectly well from now on that I am not deceiving you. If you had asked before I would have told you; it was just your assumption. You presumed that I am also a celibate, you projected that idea.”
But he was so afraid of seeing a woman. And I said. “Now that you have raised the question I would like to say to you that your celibacy is not worth anything. You can’t even look at a woman? Are you so afraid? Your umbrella is nothing but your cowardice. You are continually carrying it all around the university, and everybody is laughing. People can’t see your face, you can’t see people’s faces.” He would walk so fast that nobody could start walking with him or talking with him. And he had a really good walking pace – fast, covered with his umbrella.
“How long is this umbrella going to protect your celibacy, you tell me. And have you heard of any scripture that says an umbrella can help you to remain celibate? Have you seen any pictures of Mahavira, Buddha, Krishna carrying an umbrella? You are the first celibate in the world who is trying to be celibate by using an umbrella. And I know perfectly well that you must be looking; here in class also you must be looking sometimes, just opening your eyes a little bit.”
He said, “But how do you know, because you are fast asleep?”
I said, “How do you know that I am fast asleep? You must be looking. How long can you keep your eyes closed? And then to teach…”

The family tries to make something of you. My family wanted me to become a scientist; they saw a potential. I said, “I do understand that as a scientist I will be paid more, I will be respected more. As a philosopher perhaps I may remain unemployed. But the time has come that I should choose my own path. If it leads into the desert at least I will be happy that I have followed my own path; there will be no grudge against anybody. Following your path, even if I become the greatest scientist, I will not be happy because I have been forced; it is a kind of slavery. And you have the power to force me, but remember that I will not in any way allow anything to be imposed upon me.”
That time my father became angry. He said, “Okay, go to the arts department but I am not going to give you any money.”
I said, “That’s settled. Money is yours; I am not yours. If you don’t want to give me money, that I can understand. And I can understand that if I go to the science department, you are ready to give me money because then I am following your desire. You are ready to give money to me only if I remain under your control.
“So that’s perfectly clear: you are using money to force me in a certain direction which I refuse. But,” I said, “you will suffer repentance just because you mentioned money. Do you think you can force me by threatening that you are not going to give me any money?”
I left the house. For two years he was continually coming, saying, “Forget that and forgive me. I am really sorry that I mentioned the money. I can see your trouble, and I am the cause of it” – because at night I used to work as an editor in a newspaper just to earn money so that in the day I could join the university. But I said, “How can I accept money from you?”
One day, when tears came to his eyes, I said, “Okay, if you insist, just put the money on the table. I will not take it from your hand. From the table I can take it because with the table I have no problem, no trouble, no conflict.” So that’s the way it continued the remaining four years. He would put it on the table and I would take it from the table, but not from him – “because,” I said to him, “that strategy is ugly.”

But the family exploits every child because it has the power of money, prestige, the power of numbers. And a child is just a child; how can he revolt? And the family poisons the child: you are a Hindu, a Muslim, a Christian. It poisons the child: you are a republican, you are a democrat, you are a socialist, you are a communist. It goes on poisoning him. And this whole poisoning piles up and becomes your personality.
The commune is not your family… Or it is your real family.
Strangely enough, every boy hates his father, every girl hates her mother; but nobody says so. On the surface everything is polite and nice, just goody-goody. Deep down there are wounds. All the wounds that have been inflicted upon you in your childhood you will carry your whole life. And those wounds will work upon you in such a way that they will spoil your whole meaning.
For example, I see that the girl who hates her mother will behave exactly like the mother – because from where is she going to learn? The mother was the first woman she knew. She hates her because the mother forced her to be someone who she is not, and now she has to carry that burden.
So on the one hand she hates her; on the other hand that was the woman she came to know most intimately. So in her gestures, in her language, in her reactions, in everything she will repeat her mother. She will be just a carbon copy: the personality that she is carrying is her mother’s personality.
No wonder that people hate themselves too. It is for the simple reason that the personality they think they are, is the personality given by the people whom they wanted to rebel against, but against whom they were helpless.
Sigmund Freud has made a significant point about it: that the idea of God as father must have arisen as a compensation. Somewhere back in primitive prehistory days, some young man must have killed his father because that was the only way to be himself. But then the repentance for killing the father…
Sigmund Freud has no historical facts about it, there is no history available, but his deduction is psychological, not historical. He says that every boy is going to hate his father. He will go on hating him.
But in hating one’s own father, the conscience is disturbed. To console the conscience, he starts worshipping the father.
In India particularly – because I know India more than any other country – the son has to touch the feet of the father, of the mother, of everybody who is older than him. This is just a way to help him: by touching the feet of the father, he balances his hate with respect, and he feels at ease that he respects his father.
If you don’t hate your father, I don’t think there is any need to touch the feet of the father. Perhaps once in a while, out of gratitude, you may touch them; but that cannot be a formality, it can only be an informal happening. Right now, people touch the feet, but there is no feeling in it. How can there be feeling in it? There is hate inside: this is the man who has spoiled your life.
The family becomes your basic unit; so if your family is in conflict with the neighbor, then it is your family – right or wrong, you will fight alongside your family.

In front of my house lived a goldsmith – he was a little eccentric. One of his eccentricities was that whenever he would go to the market or to the river, he would lock his house – even if his wife was inside, his children were inside. He would lock the house from the outside and would pull the lock two or three times to see whether it was really locked. And if anybody created suspicion – and I was continually… I would stand just a few houses away when he was going to the river, and I would say, “Soniji” that means “goldsmithji” – “have you forgotten to check your lock?”
He would say, “Have I forgotten?” and back he would go. Once when he was taking a bath in the river, I told him, “Today you have forgotten.”
He said, “Really?”
I said, “I was sitting in front of you.” And half-bathed he ran back first to check.
He was in some conflict with my father – a legal case about some land. The land really belonged to him, but my father had paid his younger brother for it. The younger brother had pretended that it belonged to him, so my father paid him. And on the registry day, it was found out that the man was deceiving: the land belonged to the other brother. He would not return the money, and my father would not give up control of the land to the other brother to whom it belonged; so there was a legal case.
I told my father, “I will be coming to support the eccentric goldsmith.”
He said, “What! You will be a witness against me?”
I said, “Of course. I know that you have paid, but that was your fault. You should have found out to whom the land belonged before you paid. And that poor eccentric goldsmith, what fault is it of his? – the land belongs to him. And anyway he is far poorer than you; so even if you lose the money, it is better than if he loses the ground, because he is really poor.”
My father said, “But you don’t understand a simple thing: being against your own father…?”
I said, “It is not a question of being against my own father. I don’t believe in this ‘right or wrong, my family…’ And I know that your claim is right, but it is your mistake; you should suffer. And I have been harassing that poor goldsmith, so it is a chance to help him. I will be helping him.”

The family wants you to be with it. I have seen families, generations after generations fighting in the courts, destroying each other, killing each other, for generations. Because your forefathers were against somebody – you have nothing to do with these people who are living now, they have not done anything wrong to you – somewhere in the past, four, five, six generations ago… You may not even know the names of the people who fought, but the enmity goes on.
The family tries to disconnect you from the whole society, just as the nation divides you from other nations. It is the same strategy of division. A commune is not a family. Nobody here is father, nobody here is mother. Nobody here is brother or sister. Nobody here is husband or wife.
Here are only individuals, and these individuals have decided to live in freedom, and to support each other in living the way of freedom. Nobody possesses anybody. Nobody has any hold on anybody. Everybody is supportive of whatsoever you are, of whatsoever you can be.
The family is dictatorial. A commune is simply supportive. I don’t give you even guidelines, because even guidelines may become dictatorial in your mind, because your mind has been made by the society. Even if I give you guidelines you may think these are commandments.
Guidelines are not commandments. You are not to follow them, just understanding them is enough. Then follow your path. Perhaps on your path something that I had said may be of use, or perhaps nothing will be of any use. So there is no need to have faith in it.
A commune is a gathering of free individuals – undemanding, non-forcing, non-dictatorial – just supporting and helping. Because alone it will be difficult; you will find it almost impossible to be yourself in the so-called society, because that society is not supportive. Yes, if it supports, it supports conditionally; it is always a bargain, a business. The society will do this for you if you are ready to do that for the society: a simple contract.
A commune is not a business, a relationship. There is no contract: just a few people who feel imprisoned in the society drop out and create a gathering of similar rebels. They are all rebels, and they are all supportive of each other. Whatever one’s rebellion, and whatever one wants to be, the commune’s support is unconditional. But the commune can exist only if you merge with it. If you keep yourself aloof, there is no commune because there is no communion. Hence I say, dissolve yourself in the commune.
And remember that you will become an individual by this dissolving. You will not lose your individuality, you will find it – that’s the only way to find it. In the society you can go on changing your personality, but you will never find your individuality. You can change from a Catholic to a communist, but that will not make any difference at all. You will not go any longer to the Vatican, but now to the Kremlin – those red stars will be holy. Now Russia will become your holy land.
You have simply changed from one ditch and you have fallen into another ditch. Maybe they have a little different shape, but ditches are ditches. From one jail you move into another jail. Of course, while you are moving from one jail to another, just in between you will have a little taste of freedom. Don’t think that this is going to be the taste of the other jail. That is only in between.
Escape! Don’t go to the other jail; escape from any jail. And never go again into the same structure, because all structures are the same.
A commune is an immensely spiritual phenomenon: you are with people and yet you are alone. Nobody trespasses on your aloneness. Everybody respects your aloneness. You are with many people, you are together, but nobody tries to impose any condition, any relationship, any bondage. Nobody takes from you any promise for tomorrow, because tomorrow you will be different, the other will be different. Who knows about tomorrow? When tomorrow comes we will see.
The commune has no tomorrow, it lives here and now. And it lives totally and intensely, because we are not living as a means to some other life. We are living as an end to itself.
Catholics are living for some other life; this life is only a ladder. And the same is true with all the religions: this life is to be sacrificed. They all teach you sacrifice – they really sacrifice you. You are all butchered – on different altars, in different temples – but you are all butchered.
The only way to save yourself from these butchers who are all around is to join together with similar kinds of rebels, so the way of revolution becomes strong, grounded, self-supporting. And then you find everybody is living intensely. We are not living for another world, so why should we live lukewarm?
We should live real hot!

In Ahmedabad I used to go often on a bridge where there was a very big advertisement. I liked that advertisement; just one word was not right. It was an advertisement for a certain cold drink. The advertisement said, “Livva little hot, sippa Gold Spot” – Gold Spot is something like Coca-Cola. But they have found a really good slogan: “Livva little hot” – but why a little? That was my trouble. Sippa anything, but why a little?
Jayantibhai used to drive me over that bridge, and he would go fast when the board was there. And I would say, “Jayantibhai, wait!”
He said, “That is why I was going fast; otherwise you will see that board again…”
And I told him, “That board is really very philosophical – just a little mistake, but all philosophers have been making mistakes. A little hot? – that hurts. Be really hot, because there is nothing to sacrifice for.”

All religions teach you to be martyrs. All families teach you to be martyrs. All nations teach you to be martyrs. It is a strange world. Why are people being taught to be suicidal? – because to be a martyr is just a good word for committing suicide. Nobody teaches living. Nobody encourages living. Nobody teaches you that you can be a little more hot – why are you just smoking with no fire? Many people are just smoking with no fire.
How long have you been smoking, and how long are you going to smoke? Create some fire!
And when there is real fire, there is no smoke. When it is really hot there is no smoke. Burn like a flame without any smoke! But everybody is telling you to keep a low profile. Why? Such a small life, why keep a low profile?
Jump as high as you can.
Dance as madly as you can.
Melt as totally as you can.
And out of that burning, living, melting, you will find your authenticity, your individuality. Individuality is never afraid.

In front of my house there was a tall tamarind tree. Now the tamarind tree is not very strong, its branches can break very easily. It was so tall, and I was always going and climbing it. My whole family would gather around and they would say, “Now stop, no further!” I would continue going higher, and they would shout, “Do you hear or not? No further.”
I would say, “Till you stop shouting ‘No further’ I am going to climb. At the most I can fall – perhaps a few fractures; but the height is so challenging, it is calling me up. You shut up completely, then I will stop.” When they saw that I had reached a place from where a fall was certain then they would shut up. And that was a condition: “Unless you stop trying to stop me, I will go on and on.”
Only my grandfather used to say, “Don’t be worried about anything. These people are all cowards. I would have loved to come with you but I am too old, but you should remember always that I am with you. So let them shout ‘Stop!’”
Even neighbors would come and start shouting, “Stop!” But I had made it a condition again and again: “Unless you stop shouting, I will go still higher. And now it is getting really dangerous, so be quiet.” They had to be quiet. But again, next time I would… And they would shout again, and I would say, “You don’t understand. Just leave me alone! At least trust that I can also see that the branch is now getting thinner, and the wind is stronger, and the tree is swaying. I can also see it. Let me see and let me feel. And let me decide; don’t decide for me. I hate that.”

But every family goes on deciding for you.
A commune does not decide for you. At the most it helps you. So with the commune there is no paradox between individuality and melting. It is not a society, not a family. It is a gathering of rebels of all kinds. So there is no need to fit with each other and be like each other. All are rebels of different kinds. One thing is common, that they are rebels.
The rebellious spirit is the common factor that joins the commune and makes it one whole – without destroying anybody’s individuality, without destroying anybody in any way.

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