TALKS IN AMERICA

From Unconciousness to Conscious 07

Seventh Discourse from the series of 30 discourses - From Unconciousness to Conscious by Osho.
You can listen, download or read all of these discourses on oshoworld.com.


Osho,
I have been asked again and again by journalists and politicians: “Is there some possibility of another Jonestown in your commune?”
It is absolutely impossible. Even to think of it is absurd, because my whole philosophy of life is just the very opposite of Jim Jones’. What happened in Jonestown can happen anywhere in the world – but not here. One thing is completely forgotten: Jim Jones was a Christian priest. He was a reverend, and nobody has tried to discover the roots of his philosophy in Christianity – where they are! If he is related to anybody, he is related to Jesus, not to me. What happened was bound to happen; in fact, Jesus himself has a suicidal tendency.
Because you have been brought up, conditioned by Christianity…. To me, Christianity is not Christianity, but Crossianity. Its symbol is the cross, not Christ. It is based on the crucifixion. If there had been no crucifixion there would have been no Christianity; nobody would have remembered even the name of Jesus. It was the foolishness of the Jews that they crucified him and created Christianity. If he had been simply ignored by his people…and there was nothing much in it. What he was saying were very simple truths which have been known for thousands of years. There was nothing new in it, there was nothing dangerous in it.
To crucify him was absolutely baseless. But it seems Jesus wanted it to happen, because before the crucifixion he was aware that he was going to be caught if he went to the festival; if he went into Jerusalem he was going to be caught and crucified. He was fully aware, it was known to everybody. There was no need to go there, but he was pulled toward Jerusalem as if pulled by a magnet, irresistibly. He was filled with this idea that “crucifixion will prove my messiahhood.”
You have to understand the background. Jews have certain things that a messiah has to fulfill; one of them is crucifixion and resurrection. But resurrection is possible only if crucifixion happens. And Jesus was declaring himself to be the messiah, the awaited one, for whom the Jews have been waiting for centuries, who would redeem them from their suffering, their misery, and who would open the doors of heaven for them. They could not believe that this poor carpenter’s son, utterly uneducated, was the messiah – that “he is going to redeem us, he is going to redeem the whole of humanity from suffering.”
And that’s why they were insisting that the only test would be the cross. Jews were insisting on the cross, because that would prove whether he is a messiah or not. And Jesus was hankering for the cross and crucifixion, because unless crucifixion happens, resurrection is impossible. It might happen, it might not happen, after crucifixion, but it could not happen without crucifixion – that much was certain. So when he heard the news that he was going to be crucified at that year’s festival he started moving toward Jerusalem.
He was a fanatic. In fact, all old so-called religions are fanatic because their faith is not based on reason, on science. Their faith is based on absolutely unprovable beliefs. Faith requires that you should not ask why. But the question why is absolutely natural. So to force the “why” into your unconscious, to destroy your reason completely, you have to be a fanatic – utterly stubborn; otherwise those questions will arise. If you are flexible, those “why’s” will come up, and they will destroy your faith.
What grounds had Jesus got to prove that he was the messiah? He had not got any certificate from God…just because he said so. Jews wanted to bring this stupid young man to his senses. If he had a little intelligence and rationality he would have not gone there; there was no need. But then there was no need even to declare himself a messiah or son of God – which are all foolish. You cannot prove you are the son of God; nobody can prove it. Nobody can prove that God exists, what to say about the son! God is an unproved hypothesis. From one unproved hypothesis, another unproved hypothesis – the son. A fanatic mind is needed, almost a madman. He really believed that he was the messiah. You can go to any madhouse….

When Winston Churchill was the prime minister of England, there were eight Churchills in the madhouses of England – and each absolutely certain of it. And there was no way to disprove it – that they were not Winston Churchill. How to disprove it? The man says, “I know I am Winston Churchill.”
A strange incident happened that brought this fact to light. Because of the war, after six in the evening everybody had to move into their houses; nobody was to remain outside. After six there was a strict curfew order. One day Churchill went for a walk and forgot that he had to return exactly at six. By the time he heard Big Ben, he was afraid: the house was still too far, he would not be able to reach it – and if he was caught! So he thought the best would be to knock at the first house rather than to be in a police station. And you know the British mind: they would have dragged him to a police station. Even if the man had recognized that he was Winston Churchill, it would have been of no help in Britain. He would have to prove it in the police station, and unless he proved it he would not be released. He thought it better to knock at the first door and ask, “Can I stay overnight?”
He knocked on the door. The man opened the door and he asked, “Can I stay overnight?”
The man who had opened the door asked, “Who are you?”
He said, “I am Winston Churchill, prime minister of England. You must have heard about me.”
The man simply grabbed him and pulled him in. He said, “Come in. I have heard about you.”
Churchill could not understand why he was behaving that way. He said, “What are you doing? I am really Winston Churchill.”
He said, “I know. Three others are already here. This is a madhouse.”
The whole night Winston Churchill had to remain there. He asked again and again, “Let me phone and inform your higher authorities that I am really Winston Churchill.”
But the man said, “They all say that they are really Winston Churchill, and they all want to phone to higher authorities. Whom do we listen to? You four can discuss and argue and decide.”
The whole night Winston Churchill had to live with three other Winston Churchills, who were absolutely, as absolutely certain as he was. Even he became suspicious: “Perhaps I have gone mad, perhaps these people are right.”
And this is not the only case, it has happened many times. It happened in India when Jawaharlal Nehru was prime minister. The biggest madhouse in India is in Bareilli. Jawaharlal was going to visit the madhouse, and the authorities of the madhouse thought, “It will be good if we can release someone as cured. And one man, the psychologist and the psychiatrist have found, is completely cured.” So they thought this would be good: from Jawaharlal’s hands this man can be released from the madhouse, cured. He will be happy – and certainly he was happy. Jawaharlal gave him a hug and told him, “I am happy that you are cured.”
He said, “Yes, I am also happy. And believe me, if you remain here for three years you will be cured also. When I first came I also used to believe that I am Jawaharlal Nehru – just like you.”

Now, these messiahs are basically insane. And Jesus totally believed that crucifixion was going to prove him right. That’s why I say there must be a hidden current of a suicidal wish, which nobody has bothered to look into. He went to the cross, and on the cross also he was still asking God, “Now is the time. Have you forsaken me?” He was asking for the miracle, for the resurrection, so he could prove to the Jews that he was their messiah. If anybody was responsible for the crucifixion, he himself was responsible. He asked for it.
And no Jewish source says that there was a resurrection, no contemporary source says that there was a resurrection. Only the New Testament, the four disciples of Jesus, say that there was a resurrection. It is fictitious. If there was a resurrection, then what happened? If Jesus resurrected, then when did he die? Where did he die? Where lies his body? Christians don’t have any answer for that. There was no resurrection. But because of the resurrection and the crucifixion, the cross became the symbol of Christianity. I call it, therefore, Crossianity. It became death-oriented. It became anti-life. In fact, all the religions have been anti-life. They are all looking for a better life – after death.
You know the Jewish and Christian story, why Adam and Eve were expelled from the paradise of God. What was their crime? For what were they punished? God had told them that they were not to eat fruits from two trees. Ordinarily, Christians only mention one tree. That is not true. God had told them not to eat from two trees. One tree, that Christians mention, is the tree of knowledge. And the other tree, that Christians don’t mention – are afraid to mention – is the tree of life, eternal life.
And what kind of God – who is preventing his son, his daughter…telling them to remain ignorant, not to eat from the tree of knowledge, and remain lifeless, without the juice of life, eternal life, flowing in them – what kind of father is this? This man seems to be the enemy, not the father. And that’s why it was very easy for the serpent to persuade Eve. You would have been persuaded, anybody would have been persuaded. The argument that the Devil gave to Eve was, “God wants you to remain ignorant, and also wants you to remain unaware of the possibility of eternal life energy, because if you know these two things, you will be yourself equal to God; and he is jealous.” And it makes sense, because the Jewish God is very jealous; he does not want Eve and Adam to become equal to him. They should remain dependent. For wisdom, for life, they should always remain dependent on him.
No, this is not love. This is not compassion. This is not like a father. But you see, he is dividing them from two things: knowledge – which today we call science; science means knowledge. All that you have today, all your comforts, your luxuries, your health, your long life, is because of science. Take away whatever science has given to you and where will you be? What will you be? – just a naked animal, far weaker than any animal around. You will not be able to survive.
Knowledge is not a sin. And to feel life and to live life in its totality, and to live it with such passion and intensity that each moment becomes a moment of eternity – that should be the goal of a religion. And that is what I have been teaching to you: eat from the tree of knowledge. Become a knower. All ignorance and darkness should disappear from you. You should become more conscious, more knowing, more aware – that’s what I have been teaching. And live life so passionately, so lovingly, so totally, that you can taste something of eternity in it. And whenever you live any moment, forgetting the past, forgetting the future, that moment gives you the taste of eternity.
Exactly what God has told Adam and Eve, I am telling you just the opposite: those are the two trees you have to search for and eat their fruit.
If I have to write the Bible, then I cannot make God say, “Don’t eat the fruit of knowledge, the fruit of life.” Then what is left? Just to vegetate like animals? Then what is the difference between animals and man? But God was very angry. It says he drove out Adam and Eve. I don’t know what model of car he was using – must have been a Ford, Model T. He drove them out! What was their crime? Disobedience – but it was worth it.
I teach you that disobedience.
If Adam and Eve had not disobeyed, there would have been no humanity. You would have been still in the jungles, naked animals. You would not have been able to create the world that you have created.
Reverend Jim Jones is a Christian priest. He is against knowledge, he is against life – as all Christians are, whether they know it or not. You can look at the whole tradition of the popes. They have been fighting, at each step, any progress of science. They have been trying to cripple science, to destroy science. This is the same story: the fruit of knowledge should not be eaten.
The popes are all criminals, because to stop knowledge, to stop the growth of science, is far more criminal than to murder man. Nothing can be more criminal than that. But even today, any progress in science and every effort is made to stop it; because it is dangerous to the vested interests of politicians and the priests. It has to be stopped. Man should not become too wise; otherwise you will not be able to make humanity a breeding ground for slaves.
On small things the popes have been reluctant…very small things. The Bible says the earth is flat. Of course, it looks flat – because it is so vast you can’t see its roundness. Just standing on the earth you can see it is flat. Don’t believe your eyes, they can deceive you many times. So when for the first time it was said that the earth is a globe, it is round, immediately the pope comes in – that it goes against the Bible. So what?
If it goes against the Bible, throw the Bible away! It proves the Bible is wrong. It proves that the Bible is not written by God; otherwise he would not have been so stupid. At least God sitting in heaven could have seen the roundness of the earth. Human beings cannot see it; they are standing on the earth itself, their vision is not so vast. But God, sitting in seventh heaven…. You can see the roundness of the moon, the roundness of other planets – cannot God see the roundness of the earth? It is a planet.
If the Bible was listened to, America would not have been discovered. It was discovered against the Bible, remember; it stands as proof against the Bible. This man Columbus did not listen to the priests, to the popes, did not listen to all the advisors. He jumped and risked his life. “Because,” he argued, “if the earth is round, then how many days it takes does not matter; if I go on and on and on, I will come back to the same point – if the earth is round.” It was through tremendous courage, rebelliousness, disobedience, that he discovered America. He thought it was India – hence the Red Indians; he thought he had discovered India. It was only later on that he found that this was not India, this was an absolutely new place, a new world.
The Bible says the sun goes around the earth. Yes, it appears so, because we are on the planet earth, and the earth is moving so fast we cannot feel its movement. And to feel movement you have to see something unmoving; only in comparison can you feel the movement. When you are moving in a train, you know that you are moving because the trees are standing by the side, the stations are standing by the side, and you are passing them by. But sometimes, if two trains are moving together in the same direction, with the same speed, you may for a moment become confused as to whether your train is standing or moving, or whether the other train is moving or standing, unless you see something static to compare with. Because we are on the planet earth and everything is moving with us – the trees, the mountains, the oceans, everything is moving with us with tremendous speed – we cannot feel it.
But Galileo was forced to change his statement. The pope dictated to him: “You have to write in your discoveries that the sun goes round the earth, not vice versa” – because if the earth goes round the sun, then the Bible is proved wrong. It is so idiotic. As if we are here just to prove everything in the Bible right! Nobody is concerned about truth: the Bible has to be proved right by the Christians, the Koran has to be proved right by the Mohammedans, the Gita has to be proved right by the Hindus. Nobody is interested in the truth.
My whole interest is truth.
And truth is expanding every day, opening new dimensions. And of course the old books and old messiahs are bound to become outdated – but they don’t. The dead go on ruling over the living.
They have all taught that this life is a punishment. Hindus say it is a punishment, Buddhists say it is a punishment, Christians say it is a punishment. Hindus, Jainas, Mohammedans, they all say it is a punishment. And if it is a punishment, if you are imprisoned in life, then naturally suicide should not be condemned. That’s a way out.
I say to you, it is a reward, not a punishment. You have been rewarded with life and consciousness. You are unique in this existence. Trees have life, but not consciousness. Animals have brains, but not the possibility of awareness. Man is the supreme-most in this whole existence.
How can I say destroy yourself? Reverend Jim Jones can say it: it is a punishment. If it is an imprisonment, get out of it – any way! The way does not matter. And after life is the “real” paradise. All these religions have been anti-life, against life. Then naturally they have been teaching you, some way or other, “Accept the misery, accept the suffering. Soon death will come and all will be over, and you will be in heaven.”
And you should look at their contradictions. Jesus says, “Blessed are the poor, for they shall inherit the kingdom of God.” Do you see the contradiction? Blessed are the poor – for what reason? Poverty is the source of all kinds of crimes, miseries, sufferings. But blessed are the poor – good consolation, to keep the poor drugged. This consolation is far more successful than any LSD, because LSD wears off within hours. This drug has not gone out of the system of man for thousands of years – blessed are the poor. And what is the reason that they are blessed? – because they are going to inherit the kingdom of God.
I would like you to see the contradiction: if the kingdom of God is the reason that makes them blessed, then poverty is not a blessing. It is just a means to the kingdom of God, where all pleasures will be available, all your fantasies will be fulfilled.
Jesus says, “It is possible for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle, but it is not possible for a rich man to pass through the gates of heaven.” Ninety-nine percent of the people on the earth have been poor. And these people, Jesus or Buddha or Mohammed, have no idea how to destroy this poverty. Only science is capable of destroying it, and only a scientific mind can manage to make the earth rich, and can make it a blessing. But the unscientific religious mind goes on interfering.
The pope is continually interfering. He will not allow birth control. It is a sin, sin against God. And what kind of God is this who can’t see that the earth is overburdened with the population? People are starving and dying and he goes on sending people. With each person he should send a small piece of earth and other things too – just naked he sends them. And the pope is there, the shankaracharya is there, Jaina monks are there, Mohammedan imams are there – all against birth control, because it is against God.
Now these are the people…if some day this whole earth dies out of this explosion of population, then these people will be responsible for it. They are against abortion. Now, without birth control, without abortion, there is no possibility for this earth to be rich. And all these religions go on praising poverty. When you praise poverty, how are you going to destroy it? When you respect and praise poverty, of course you are going to protect it. It is something respectable – they don’t condemn it. They can’t condemn it, because they are living off it, exploiting it.
Now Mother Teresa…where will she be, and who is going to give a Nobel Prize to a Mother Teresa if there are no orphans dying in the streets? Those orphans are needed for a Mother Teresa to be. Those orphans are absolutely needed, otherwise the Nobel Prize will be missed by Mother Teresa. So she is against abortion, against birth control. Let orphans come; let them come more and more – because these are the people who are being turned into Christians.
You will be surprised – in India I have been watching for thirty years – not a single rich man is being converted to Christianity. I was amazed. Not a single rich man, not even a middle-class man; not a single educated person, cultured person; not a single brahmin, not a single Jaina is converted to Christianity. Who is converted to Christianity? Orphans, aboriginals who were living almost five thousand years ago, and to change them to Christianity is so easy.

I am reminded of an incident that happened in front of my eyes. In central India there is a state, Bastar – it is populated only by aboriginals: no schools, no hospitals, no education, nothing. They lived naked. With much difficulty they manage one meal a day, and what is that meal? – just a little rice and fish, that’s all. These people are being converted to Christianity. You don’t need great argumentation with them. How do you convert these people? I went to see one conversion. I had to walk twenty-five miles to reach that place, because no road goes there, no train goes there.
How was the conversion being managed? A Christian priest was talking to the aboriginals. I listened, sitting at the back: a cold winter night, so there is a bonfire, and in that light – that is the only light and the only warmth – those people are naked and shivering. And the Christian priest takes out from his bag two statues, one of Jesus and one of Rama. Those aboriginals believe in Rama, the Hindu avatara, the incarnation of God according to Hindus.
The priest has a bucket full of water by his side and he says, “Look, I will do a simple thing for you. This is Rama and this is Christ.” Both statues look exactly the same. He puts both the statues in the bucket of water. Rama’s statue drowns, of course, because Rama never walked on water. Jesus’ statue remains floating and the aboriginals all clap, and they say, “This is great!”
And the missionary says, “Jesus saves. How can Rama save you? He cannot save himself. You are seeing it in front of your eyes….”
I had to stand up, and I said, “Wait.” I asked the aboriginals, “Have you ever heard of a water test?”
They said, “No.”
“Have you ever heard of a fire test?”
They said, “Yes!” The fire test is the only real test. When Rama had to test his wife’s purity, she had to pass through fire.
I said, “Okay, the bonfire is there, now bring both those statues.” The priest started hesitating. I said, “You stop, and don’t try to escape from here. The fire test has to be taken” – because I can see the statue of Jesus is of wood and Rama’s statue is of steel. I threw both the statues in the fire. Of course, Jesus – poor Jesus! – burned; Rama came out alive. And the aboriginals were very angry; they were ready to beat the priest. I said, “No, there is no need to beat him.”
But poor people, uneducated people, who know no argumentation, they are being converted. And they are being told to go on creating more and more children, because there is this politics of numbers. How many Catholics, how many Christians, how many Mohammedans – that is going to decide who is going to rule the world. They are not interested in humanity. And they are all promising these people that in future, after life, they will be getting all that rich people are getting here. It’s strange: all that the rich people are getting here is possible here for everybody. Why wait for death? And what basis have you got, that after death you get these things? Has anybody returned and told?
In India there is a place, Surat, and in that area is a Mohammedan sect. Its high priest lives there. It is a very rich sect, the Boharas. And the high priest has been exploiting those poor, rich Boharas for centuries. When a Bohara dies, he has to donate a large amount of money to the high priest. And the high priest gives him a certificate, and promises him – just like a promissory note – promises him, “You will get back a thousandfold when you will show this note to God.” And people have been giving millions of rupees and getting those certificates. Those certificates are put with them in their pocket, and they go into the grave believing that when they show it to God….
I was staying at a Bohara friend’s house. His father had died just a few days before, and they had donated a lot of money. They were really rich people and he said that this type of certificate had been given.
I said, “Do one thing: take me to your father’s grave tonight, and we will see whether the certificate is still there or not.”
He said, “But what is the point of it?”
I said, “I will tell you the point later on. First let us see.” Of course, the certificate was there. I said, “Look. Your father is gone, this is only the dead body. And he has not taken the certificate with him. Now what is he going to show to God? – and you are an educated person, and putting a certificate in a dead man’s pocket…!” But it continues, it goes on.
I have met the high priest who is a Ph.D., D.Litt. from Oxford – a very educated man. I said, “At least a man of your education should not do such exploitation.”
He could not look me in the eye. He said, “Whenever you come to me, you disturb my sleep. For a few days it becomes difficult to sleep, you create such inconvenient questions.”
I said, “It is not me creating them, it is you. You drop all this nonsense. A man of education, a cultured man, should come out, should say to people, ‘You have been deceived.’”
There is no life after death, as you know life. And if there is any life you have to learn to live now, and you have to live it so totally and intensely that if there is any life after death you will be able to live there too. If there is not, there is no question. That should always be the rational person’s approach.
I don’t say anything about heaven or hell, punishment or reward. I simply say to you: go on dying to the past so it is not a burden on your head. And do not live in the future, which is not yet. Concentrate your whole energy here now. Pour it into this moment, with totality, with as much intensity as you can manage. And in that moment you will feel life. To me that life is equivalent to God. There is no other God than this life. Of course, if after death you survive, you will know the art of living and you will continue. If you don’t survive, there is no problem.
So it is impossible in my commune, absolutely impossible, that anything like Jonestown could happen. But journalists go on searching for sensation. Their whole business depends on sensation. They exploit the lowest instincts of humanity. Journalism has not yet come of age. It has not become mature yet. So if there is a rape, it is news. If there is murder, it is news. If there is suicide, it is news. Anything ugly, disgusting, criminal, is news, and anything beautiful is not news. If a dog bites a man it is not news, it is natural; but if a man bites a dog, then it is news. Then the journalist is not interested whether it is true or not; then it is enough, the rumor is enough.
There is an old definition of a philosopher: a philosopher is a blind man in a dark house with no light, on a dark night, looking for a black cat which is not there. This is an old definition of a philosopher. Let me add something more to it: the journalist is the man who finds it. Then it is news.

This commune, which knows only love, life and laughter; this commune, which does not believe in any heaven, in any hell; this commune, which does not believe in following, in believing, in faith – how is a Jonestown possible here? This is the only place where it is impossible. Anywhere else it could be possible, because death everywhere is worshipped, glorified, and the world beyond death is emphasized continuously: that you have to sacrifice this life for that life which is to come after death.
My emphasis is just the opposite: sacrifice that for this. Sacrifice everything for this moment. Rejoice this moment, and if you are capable of rejoicing this moment, you will be able to erase the suicidal instinct from your being completely.
If you can rejoice in this life totally, you will not be bothered at all what happens after death – because so much will be happening now that you cannot imagine that more is possible.
And you say journalists and politicians have been asking you the question. Journalists are poor people – just living, exploiting the lower instincts of man and the lower curiosities of man. They are not very harmful, they are not dangerous. At the most they create amusement and people just enjoy. They themselves cannot rape; they enjoy a rape story. They would like to murder, but they cannot murder, it is too risky; they enjoy the murder story. They have thought many times to commit suicide – remember, it is very difficult to find a man who has not at one time in his life thought of dropping it all, and being finished with it all – but they have not been able to gather courage. It needs a little courage to commit suicide – just a little courage, not much. Real courage is needed to live. Just a little courage is needed to commit suicide – a momentary emotional courage, just for a moment, for a flash. But they have not been able to do it themselves. Somebody else has done it; they enjoy the story.
People enjoy only that which they would like to do but are not capable of – their circumstances don’t permit, whatsoever the cause – but they can at least enjoy it. They can get identified. In a movie, on television, in a story, in a novel, in a newspaper, they get identified with those people that they would like to become but they cannot. They may condemn, that is their mask; deep down they are enjoying it.
Otherwise, why so much interest in Jonestown? He was mad. And who were his followers? All uneducated, mostly black people, not understanding anything – what kind of congregation had he got? But he managed to draw the attention of the whole world just by committing suicide. Otherwise nobody would have ever known the Reverend Jim Jones and his people. By committing suicide he has managed good publicity. And that’s all he wanted: to become famous.
One university has done research in my commune. Sixty percent of people are graduates from some university. Twenty percent have postgraduate degrees – one M.A., two M.A.’s, three M.A.’s. Ten percent of people have Ph.D.’s – one Ph.D., two Ph.D.’s, three Ph.D.’s. Three percent of people have D.Litt.’s, B.Sc.’s, Doctor of Education, LL.D.’s. Now, this kind of people you compare with Jonestown? You cannot find such a caliber anywhere in one commune. These intelligent people have not gathered here to commit suicide – that they could have done anywhere. They have gathered here to share life with me, to have something of the eternal, to taste it.
But the politicians are dangerous people. Journalists are nothing to be much worried about, but politicians are dangerous people. It can never become a Jonestown, but politicians can make it a Dachau, an Auschwitz, a Buchenwald. Politicians can do that, they have already started doing it. They declare the city illegal. Now, where seven thousand people are living without any crime, without any drugs, without any problem, without harming anybody – the city is illegal! No illegality is committed – the city is illegal. And the illegal cities, which are committing all illegalities, are legal.
They want this city to be demolished because of their land-use laws. And none of those idiots has come to see how we are using the land. Can they use it more creatively than we are using it? And for fifty years nobody was using the land; they were happy, that was good use. Now we are creating out of it. We are a self-sufficient commune. We are producing our food, our vegetables, our fruits; we are making every effort to make it self-sufficient.
This desert…somehow it seems to be a destiny of people like me. Moses ended up in a desert. I have ended up in a desert and we are trying to make it green. We have made it green. If you go around my house you cannot think it is Oregon; you will think it is Kashmir. There was not a single tree when I arrived. There was no greenery. I was simply shocked when I was brought here; the house was standing naked. And I have always lived in beautiful gardens; wherever I have lived, I have created a beautiful garden.
We have turned the place, with great effort, into fertility. Our people are working twelve, fourteen hours a day; and they don’t come to see what has happened here. Just sitting in the Capitol they decide that it is land-use, and it is against land-use laws. If this is against land-use laws, then your land-use laws are bogus and should be burned. But first come and see, and prove that this is against land-use laws. But they are afraid to come here.
They would like to come one day, which they are trying…. The county asked for the city plan, it incorporated the city plan – and then after pressure from above the city plan was rejected, it was taken out. But in their own county plan there are many places where Rajneeshpuram is mentioned that they forgot. So just two days ago, they have again crossed it out everywhere, because they want that no place like this exists.
Seven thousand people are living here and no place like this exists! First they will cross it out from their books, from their maps, because it has come onto their maps – because for two years it has been a legal city and the government has been giving it every support that a city needs. But now suddenly it has become illegal. Now from maps the name will be removed, from geography books the name will be removed, from road signs the name will be removed.
I have heard that it used to happen in Soviet Russia: Stalin removed all those names that he did not want. When the Russian revolution succeeded, Trotsky was the second man to Lenin, not Stalin; Stalin was nowhere. But Trotsky was killed, murdered, in Mexico. He had had to escape. Then there is every possibility Lenin was poisoned…. And then Stalin started writing the whole history again. Then pictures of Trotsky disappeared, and Stalin’s pictures started appearing in place of Trotsky’s pictures, second to Lenin – all tricks with photography. All history books were changed. When Khrushchev came to power he did the same with Stalin – his name was removed, his books were pulled out, burned. Not only that, his grave, which was made by the side of Lenin, near the Kremlin wall, was removed. His bones were taken out and sent back to his village where he was born.
I have heard: Khrushchev was addressing the presidium, and was telling them that Stalin has committed a great crime against communism. He has murdered millions of men. One man from the back said, “But you were with Stalin all this time, why did not you say anything?”
Khrushchev said, “Please stand up and tell your name.” Nobody stood. Khrushchev said, “Do you know now why I was silent?”
I have always respected America as a country of democracy. I have always appreciated the respect for the individual, for freedom, freedom of expression. I have always loved the American Constitution. And now I feel it would have been better if I had not come here, because now I am feeling absolutely disappointed. That constitution is bogus. These words: individual, freedom, capitalism, freedom of expression, are all just words. Behind the screen it is the same politician, the same ugly face, the same mean mind – because in my opinion only the meanest people in the world are attracted toward politics; the meanest, the lowest, because they know they can only do something if they have power. You only need power to do something harmful; otherwise love is enough, compassion is enough. And for compassion you need not be a president of a country, for love you need not be a prime minister.
So I say to you: this commune by itself can never become a Jonestown – that is impossible. But these politicians can bomb it, can destroy it. They have been talking in those exact terms: that we should be thrown out of America, that we should be slaughtered. It is possible, because for the politician everything is possible – because every politician is a potential Adolf Hitler, a Joseph Stalin, a Benito Mussolini.

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