The Sword and the Lotus 01

First Discourse from the series of 24 discourses - The Sword and the Lotus by Osho.
You can listen, download or read all of these discourses on

You invited me not to get angry with blind people. I'm not – how could I be? When I see their sadness and their misery, I only become infinitely sad. They are tired, and I offer them a rest. They are thirsty, and I offer them a glass of water. But they are so afraid. What to say if I invite them to the source? Beloved Osho, how can I touch them in spite of the wall of their fear?
The second question feels somehow connected: how can we forgive the people who put you in jail?
The world is sad, it is in misery. There is great suffering in the hearts of people. But you need not be sad about it, for the simple reason that by becoming sad you join them, you create more sadness. It is not a help. It is just as if people are sick, and you see their sickness and you also become sick. Your sickness is not going to make them healthy, it is simply creating more sickness.
To feel for their sadness does not mean to become sad. To feel for their sadness means to look for the causes of what is creating all their suffering and misery, and to help them to remove those causes. And at the same time you have to remain as joyful as possible because your joy is going to help them, not your sadness. You have to be cheerful. They should know that there is a possibility of being cheerful in this sad world. They have completely lost hope, because everywhere they look there is sadness. They have accepted the fact that sadness is just the nature of things – you cannot do anything about it, you have to suffer it.
And the religious teachers have only been giving them consolations, giving them some hocus-pocus, hypocritical ideas. They have kept them miserable for centuries because they have made them accept misery as part of life. Not only that, they have raised their sadness and misery to some spiritual status. They have been telling them, “Blessed are the poor.” So not only have they accepted their sadness as just a simple fact of life about which you cannot do anything, but they have also started feeling good about it, feeling it is something spiritual, that it is a test given by God to them.
Rich people are not going to enter into the kingdom of God; it will be the poor, the miserable – they will be received with great joy and welcomed. All that they have to do is not to make any fuss about their misery – accept it as a blessing in disguise. And if for centuries you go on saying such things, you poison people’s minds. But it seems that they are not alone in their sadness; everybody is sad. In fact, they will feel afraid to be cheerful in this vast crowd of sad people.
So it is not going to help if when seeing them sad, you also become sad. It is simply making them more convinced of the fact that joy does not exist on the earth, it is something otherworldly – the fate and the destiny of the earth is misery. So simply give them an example that it is not true: “If I can be cheerful, rejoicing, your whole fabric of stupid theories is proved irrelevant.”
Secondly, you have to remember…. You say that you are not angry, but become sad seeing their sadness. There are people who become angry – these are the people who create revolutions, changes in the society, in the state. But all their revolutions have failed, because anything coming out of anger is coming out of ignorance. It is not going to create an authentic change. Change for the better is impossible out of anger.
I want you to remember one thing: sadness is just anger upside down; it is not different. It is repressed anger. If you analyze it then you will see the fact. Sadness can change into anger very easily; anger can change into sadness in the same way. They are not two things…perhaps two sides of the same coin. So whenever you are angry and you cannot express it, the situation is not such. It is too dangerous to express it, too risky to express it.
For example, a child becomes angry at the parents, but he cannot show it because he is so helpless and dependent. Then he becomes sad. His sadness is inverted anger. The same child goes out and gives a good kick to the dog. He wanted to kick his parents, but it was too risky, too dangerous. But the dog he can beat. He repressed the anger, it became sadness. But when he comes out and sees the dog, he starts beating him. The sadness changed into anger.
You have been a revolutionary. In the same circumstances you have felt anger before – anger against the whole society which creates so much misery and so much sadness and so much poverty. You have been angry against the establishment – political, religious. You have been angry about the whole educational system, that it wastes time – almost one third of one’s life – and still does not help anybody. You have been angry.
Then you came to me and I said to you that anything coming out of anger is not going to do any good. Because the source is poisoned, the fruits of it are not going to be anything else. You understood it; you changed your anger, you repressed it. Now you have become sad, but it is the same energy. I have prevented you from being angry; now I prevent you from being sad. I would like you to be cheerful. It looks awkward. People are sad and in misery, and you are cheerful.
I have been condemned around the world for teaching such things. When people are in suffering, you are supposed to be sympathetic, to join them in their misery; you are not supposed to be cheerful.
So when I say be cheerful, be happy, rejoice in the fact that you are not in the position of being miserable and suffering, I have a certain purpose behind it. The purpose is that you have to become an example to those people who have completely forgotten that life can also be a rejoicing. In spite of all the darkness you can still be unburdened of the darkness, you can still dance. Darkness cannot prevent your dance; it has no preventive force. To me this is real service.
I want my sannyasins around the world to become examples. And when people see so many people rejoicing, question marks will start arising in them. Perhaps they have accepted a wrong philosophy, and misery is not destined for this earth: “It doesn’t seem so, because on the same earth there are people who are rejoicing, who are immensely happy.” We have to break down their stupid ideology, and the only way is to live differently, not just like them; otherwise, you are supporting them.
The second thing: these people are sad, and these people are miserable because of themselves. They have followed wrong ideas, and they are clinging to those wrong ideas. They don’t understand the relationship between their ideology and their life. They don’t see that their religion, their philosophy, creates the basis of what they are going to be.
Jesus says to people that everybody has to carry his cross on his shoulders. But why does everybody have to carry his cross? Can’t he carry his guitar? Why choose a cross out of so many things in the world? And why carry it? And when you are carrying your cross on your own shoulders, how can you dance? How can you laugh? It will go against the cross, and the weight of the cross will not allow you to rejoice.
Have you seen any picture, any statue, of Jesus smiling? He is burdened with the whole world’s misery. He is doing what you are doing: he is sad because the world is sad. But his sadness has not helped the world. Two thousand years have passed – even his crucifixion has not helped, so how can it be of any help if you carry your cross on your shoulders? Even the crucifixion has failed, so just carrying your cross on your shoulders is sheer nonsense.
But people have accepted these ideas. They have laid their life’s foundations on such idiotic, stupid theories and now they find themselves miserable, sad. They go on sowing the seeds of poison. Who is going to reap the crop? Of course, they will have to reap the crop too.
The only hope possible is from a source of joy, and you can say that you have changed your foundations. Unless you change your foundations, you cannot get rid of your misery.
The misery is not really only materialistic. I have seen the poorest people happy. They don’t have anything, but they have not based their life philosophy on wrong ideas. It is more a question of what kind of spirituality you have accepted. Is it something beyond death? Is your spirituality not of this world but of some other world?
If your spirituality is something that is going to happen only after you are dead, then what are you going to do before your death? Nothing is left except being miserable and waiting for death. And all kinds of suspicions and doubts will arise, because nobody comes back after death to say to you that whatever you believe is true or untrue. So no evidence exists about what is going to happen to you after death.
Waiting for death cannot be a joyful act. Life, which your religions teach to renounce, is available. And joy and cheerfulness and blissfulness are part of life. They are living qualities, they are fragrances of intense living. Your religions teach you to renounce life, then what do you expect? You renounce life, and with it you have renounced every possibility of being blissful.
Sadness, misery, suffering: you have created them by your accepting a wrong kind of ideology. You have been cheated by your priests, you have been cheated by your politicians. You have been exploited by all the vested interests for the simple reason that they want miserable people. The miserable person is easily enslaved; the cheerful person, the blissful person, cannot be enslaved.

I am reminded of Diogenes, one of the most beautiful men who has walked on this earth. He lived naked – he had a beautiful body. And those were the days when people were sold in the markets as slaves.
So a few merchants who used to deal in selling slaves saw Diogenes lying down by the side of the river. They were overjoyed; this man would fetch a good price. They had sold many slaves, but never such a healthy and such a proportionate body and such a beautiful man. But the problem was how to catch him. They were only four, and he was more than enough for four; he would kill all of them. But something had to be done.
They were hiding behind a bush and thinking of a plan – perhaps when he was asleep then they could manage it.
Diogenes was listening. He said, “Don’t be stupid. What do you want? Just tell me. I am not a man to be enslaved, but you look so miserable that I am ready to go with you.”
They could not believe it!
Diogenes stood up and said, “Where do we go? You follow me!”
They went to the market. It was a strange scene. He looked like a master, and they looked like slaves following him. And the whole marketplace suddenly turned towards Diogenes. It was a breathtaking scene. They had never seen such a slave – “He should be an emperor!”
He stood on the platform where each slave had to stand before he was auctioned. Standing on the platform he looked at the crowd and declared, “A master is ready to be sold. If any slave amongst you wants to purchase a master, he should come forward.”
There was great silence. Even in such a situation Diogenes was not sad, he was not miserable; on the contrary he was enjoying the whole scene!
One king came up and asked the price. Diogenes said, “I am a priceless being, but you can give whatever you want to give to these poor fellows, these four persons. They have brought me here out of compassion, so you can give them as much as you like.”
The king gave them the money, took Diogenes in his chariot, and rode towards his palace. He was immensely impressed by the man, his strength. He talked on the way, and when they reached the palace he said to Diogenes, “You are not meant to be a slave, you are a master. I free you.”

We create our life inch by inch, and whatever happens to us, nobody else is responsible for it. So the only revolution that I teach is an individual revolution.
The way is to help those people to understand that you are clinging to wrong kinds of concepts. This very earth can become a paradise, but you will have to forget the paradise that is beyond death. That is causing your trouble. This very moment can become an eternity of joy, but you will have to forget all those promises which your prophets and your saviors and incarnations of God have given to you.
Jesus says to his people, “I will come for the salvation of the whole of humanity.” One disciple asks him, “When?” And he says, “Very soon. In this very life you will see me.” Two thousand years have passed – there is no sign of Jesus anywhere. But this has been the strategy of all these people – to postpone everything for the future.
Krishna did the same thing. Five thousand years ago he said, “I will come. Whenever there is suffering, whenever there is misery, whenever the good, the virtuous people are tortured by the vicious, I will come to save you. This is a promise.”
For five thousand years everything that he said has been happening every day, every moment. The good people are tortured, the vicious are in power, the whole of humanity has lived in misery, in suffering – and there is no sign of Krishna anywhere. But this is a strategy to postpone things for an unknown future; then you cannot ask because the man is no longer there.
It is easy to promise for the future.
I promise you about the present.
Nobody has done it before. It is very easy to promise for the future. You need not deliver the goods because you will not be there and you will not be answerable. I say to you my promise is for the present, the future does not exist.
So you have to change people’s conditioning. They are not miserable unnecessarily; they are miserable because they have created a certain pattern around their beings which makes them whatever they are. Your sadness will not help them. You have to be cheerful, you have to rejoice. You have to make it emphatically clear to them that what you are saying is not only possible, you have made it actual in your life. And if thousands of sannyasins can do that…
I don’t think people want to be miserable, I don’t think they want to be in suffering, it is just that they have been taught to be in suffering and that there is no other way.
In different ways Hinduism says to people, “You are in suffering because of your past lives’ karmas. You have been doing evil acts – nobody knows if that is true – and because of your past lives’ evil acts you are suffering now. All that you can do is to patiently suffer, and don’t do any evil act so that in a future life you will not have to suffer.” Now, Hinduism has used the whole strategy of past and future, leaving the present for your suffering. Then the past has the cause; in the present you have the effect. And if you are patient – that means you don’t react against your misery, you don’t do anything against your misery, you don’t listen to any kind of revolutionary thoughts – then in the future you will have a beautiful, blissful life.
Nobody knows about past life, nobody knows about future life. All that you have is the present life – which is suffering. They have sandwiched you between two non-existential things. And they have made it clear: be patient. That is why, in India – which is the oldest civilization in the world – there has never been a revolution of the poor against the rich, of the powerless against those who have power. Patience is the antidote to revolution.
Don’t be angry, because that leads finally to revolution, and that changes nothing. Don’t be sad, because it is only anger upside down, and you create more sadness; you become, again, another example of sadness.
Become an example of joy. It will look very illogical that people are sad and you are cheerful. It is not graceful, it is not mannerly, but what is mannerly is not going to help. So it is not a question of manners and grace and etiquette, it is a question of creating in the minds of people who are sad that the possibility of getting out of sadness exists herenow.
They will try in every possible way to deny it. They will say, “You must be pretending. How can you be cheerful in this world?” They will say, “You must be posing.” They will say, “You must be mad! How can you be sane and cheerful in this miserable world?” They will say, “You seem to be hypnotized.” They will say all kinds of things just to protect their ideology which they are holding very close to their hearts, not knowing that that is the poison that is going into their bloodstream.
But you have to fight and make it clear to them that it is not pretending, it is not posing; that you are not mad, that you are not hypnotized. And even if madness makes people happy, it is better than being miserable. What is the use of your sanity? If hypnotic processes make people rejoice, then what is wrong in them? It seems you have decided to remain miserable; you won’t allow any weight to go out of your misery. Then don’t make a fuss about it – remain miserable. But remember, it is your responsibility, it is your doing.
It is a difficult task, but it has to be done. It is difficult because their conditioning is thousands of years old. It is very thick, and you have to cut it through and through and reach to their very hearts. But it is not impossible.
If I can reach to millions of people’s hearts you all can make the effort. And this is the only way to change this miserable state of affairs. You just have to have enough courage, because it is going against the crowd.

In my childhood it happened I had a Sanskrit teacher in my school who was a very old-fashioned man. He was very fat, and he had a very big turban. He was the teacher of Sanskrit, a dead language, and he also lived according to his subject matter – in a very antique kind of way. But he was a very simple man too, and because he was very simple, we used to call him Bholenath. It simply means a simpleton.
He was very furious whenever he heard it. And we used to write in big letters on the blackboard before he came into the class: bholenath – lord of the simpletons; that is the exact meaning. The first thing he would do was that he would rub it off, and he would start shouting and making a scene – and we all enjoyed it.
He died, so I went to his house with my father before his body was taken to the funeral pyre. I was standing there with all his relatives and friends and neighbors, and then his wife came before his body was to be taken away. She came running out of the house, fell on him, and said, “Oh, my Bholenath!”
I could not contain my laughter – I had never thought that this would happen! When a man is dead…Even we were not thinking about his nickname, but his wife comes there and calls him Bholenath! So I laughed loudly. Everybody was shocked, and my father was very angry, but now there was nothing he could do – I had laughed.
On the way home he told me, “I will never take you anywhere. Can’t you see a simple thing? The man is dead. His wife is crying, his whole family is mourning, all his relatives are sad, everybody is sad. And are you mad or something? – you started laughing!”
I said, “You don’t know the whole thing; otherwise you would have laughed too.” And I told him the whole thing.
He said, “This is great! It is good that you had not told me before.”
And I told him, “As far as I know, all those relatives are simply pretending to be sad, because they never helped that man. When he was sick and he needed medicine, I took medicine to him. I stole money from your pocket for his medicine. Those relatives have not been of any help to him. And his wife, who was making such a scene, is in a love relationship with a neighbor. In fact, she is one of the causes of his death, because it was too much for him.
“He was a very simple man and he could not conceive that his wife would deceive him. All that was just a show. I don’t know a single person there who was really sad; they were all following a certain rule of the game.”
My father said, “Whatsoever may be the case, you have to follow the rule; otherwise you make me embarrassed.”
I said, “I am not going to follow the rule, I am simply going to do what feels right to me. And if you cannot take me, I can go alone. I may not be standing by your side, but everybody knows that I am your son, so it will not make much difference. I will just be more free, not standing by your side, and I will do exactly what I want to do. I was the only honest person there; I loved that old man. I don’t see that any harm can be done to a dead man by my laughter, and I can’t see either that all these pretenders – their sadness, is going to help the dead man.”
I told my father, “If you don’t want to be embarrassed it is better you don’t come to such places. I am going to, and I am going to do whatever I feel like doing, because I don’t think honesty can hurt anybody; at least it cannot hurt a dead man. I was the only one who loved that man, respected that man.”
My father thought for a few seconds, and then he said, “Perhaps you are right – because I was also pretending to be sad. I had nothing to do with that family, nothing to do with that man. I had just gone there because of you, because you were his student and it would look bad not to go there. I was also pretending.”

We have to cut all these pretensions. You become sad, seeing somebody else sad. Perhaps he was sad looking at somebody else who was sad…. Someone has to come out of this whole mess and be honest, and just be himself. It may be shocking to people, it may be embarrassing to people, but sooner or later they will understand it. And that understanding is going to bring an individual revolution.
This is a good chance. When somebody is miserable you have an opportunity to approach the person and to make it clear to him why he is miserable, to show him the causes. Perhaps in his misery he will be able to understand what causes are there. If he wants to get out of misery he can drop those causes; nobody is holding them there for him. And if he does not want to get out of misery, then it is his joy not to get out of misery. But then don’t make a fuss about it.
This will go against the teachings of all the religions because they will say that when somebody is sad you should be sad. That is thought to be human. I don’t think it is so. It is inhuman. If somebody is sad you have to destroy it.
The beginning has to be with your cheerfulness. Cheerfulness has a contagious effect: just one single cheerful man can change a crowd into laughter. It has tremendous power; we just have to learn how to use it.

And your second question: “How can we forgive the people who put you in jail?”
I can understand. But they have not done anything that is new, they have simply repeated an old pattern. If they can poison Socrates for the simple reason that he is corrupting people’s minds, without proving it…He was one of the greatest men in the whole history of man, who was sharpening people’s minds, not corrupting – and still they poisoned him.
If they can kill al-Hillaj Mansoor…he had done no harm to anybody. All that he was saying was that God is not there above in the heavens; it is within you, within me. But the Mohammedans could not tolerate it. If God is not in the heavens then the whole structure of their religion falls. Then to whom to pray? Then for whom to make mosques? Then the priesthood…then even Mohammed’s being a messenger of God becomes a lie, because Mansoor was saying God is in everybody’s being, he is not something separate. A simple truth, not harmful to anybody – but he was killed.

One of the Sufi mystics, Sarmad, was killed in India. Mohammedans have a simple prayer: “There is only one God, and Mohammed is his only messenger.” Sufis don’t use the whole sentence, they simply use half of the sentence: “There is only one God.” Then comes the full stop.
Asked why they don’t use the full sentence that Mohammed is the only messenger, they say, “Because the second part is not true. There have been many messengers, there are many messengers, there will be many messengers. Whoever realizes the truth becomes a messenger. It is nobody’s prerogative, it is everybody’s birthright. So we cannot use the other part.”
The story is very beautiful. Sarmad was brought to the Jama Masjid in Delhi and asked, finally, “Are you going to use the full sentence in your prayer or not?”
He said, “How can I? – because I myself am a messenger.” They cut off his head.
Before cutting off his head they told him, “We give you a chance to think again.”
He said, “Don’t bother – just cut off my head. But I say to you that even my head cut from my body will continue to say the same thing – that there is only one God.” And the story is that his head was cut off and it rolled down the many steps of Jama Masjid shouting loudly, “There is only one God!”
Sarmad was such a simple and such a beautiful man. There was no crime that he had committed, but this is how it has always been.

The fundamentalist Christians in America became tremendously afraid of me – and I can understand their fear. I was the first man who had taken away thousands of Christians from the Christian fold.
Christians had been doing that all through the centuries: taking millions of people from other religions and converting them to Christianity. And it has been thought to be a great service to God. I was the first challenge to them – nobody had done this before.
And the challenge became more significant because Christians have been able only to convert orphans, beggars, the poorest of the poor. And these people that they have converted to Christianity have nothing to do with religion. They have been given food, they have been given houses, they have been given schools for their children, they have been given hospitals for their sick…They have moved from Hinduism or from other religions to Christianity – this is not a religious conversion.
What was hurting them very much was that I had taken out the cream – not the beggars, not the orphans, but the best minds, the youngest people, the best educated, the most intelligent. I have taken them out of their fold, and I have not put them into another fold. I have simply taken them out of one prison and have left them free, I have not put them into another prison. From Christianity into Hinduism, or from Christianity to Mohammedanism – that is simply a changing of jails.
This was the problem for the fundamentalist Christians. Ronald Reagan himself is a fanatic, fundamentalist Christian. And if this fire becomes bigger…and they have no means to prevent it, because they had no arguments against me. I have all the arguments against them.
First they tried legally to destroy the commune and throw me out of America. For four years I was in America without any visa. I had been telling them, “You can say yes; you can say no,” but they were afraid, because if they said no, I might go to court. Then it would go beyond their hands and become a legal case.
On what grounds were they saying no to me? They had no grounds to say no to me, so they would not say it. And they could not say yes, because the pressure from above was not to say yes. So for four years they were committing the crime of keeping a person in the country without any visa. My application was with them, and they would not answer it.
They tried all kinds of legal ways, but we were winning cases against the government. Then they became desperate. It seemed legally they could not win. So something had to be done, and had to be done quickly before we became deeply rooted in their soil. So this was their desperate effort: they arrested me without any arrest warrant. They arrested me without showing any reason why they were arresting me. They had none. They did not allow me my basic right to call my attorney. They did everything illegal.
And from Charlotte, where they arrested me, Oregon is not more than six or eight hours’ distance. It took them twelve days to cover that distance. They were keeping me in jail without any trial – which is absolutely illegal. For three days in the Charlotte court they could not prove anything against me. Still, the US Attorney insisted to the court that I could not be given bail. All six people who were with me were given bail because there was no case.
Now, you can see their strategy. The people who were with me on the plane were given bail, but for me, especially, they would not give bail. They could not show any crime that I had committed, so they said in their appeal to the court that it was because I had unlimited sources of finance. And I have thousands of friends who love me, who are devoted to me so totally that they would do anything for me. If I were given bail…whatever money I had to deposit – five million dollars, ten million dollars or fifteen million dollars – the government was not going to accept any money, saying that I would leave America.
And from behind the scenes they were pressurizing the woman magistrate who was not even a judge. They were bribing the woman by saying, “If you give him bail” – and this was absolutely illegal – “then you lose your chance of becoming a judge. If you don’t give him bail then your chance of becoming a judge is certain.”
This was told to me by the sheriff of the jail himself. He said, “This is absolutely illegal. We have never heard of this, that without any crime proved, somebody has been put into jail, has not been given bail. The reality is,” he told me, “from behind the scenes the woman is being pressurized. She does not have guts and is afraid to lose her post of judge.”
In those twelve days they lied at every step, even to the point where they wanted me to sign under a false name: David Washington. And this was being forced on me by the US Marshal himself!
In the middle of the night he told me, “You have to sign under this name.”
I said, “You are supposed to be a law-enforcing authority. Under what law does this idea come? On your coat is written Department of Justice. At least for the moment remove the coat – because what justice is there? This is not my name. You are forcing me to do something illegal.”
He said, “I cannot answer you. Whatever I have been told from above” – and this “above” always means Ronald Reagan, because who is above? – “I am simply following. Please, don’t be angry with me.”
I said, “I am not angry with you, I am simply surprised at you and your integrity. You don’t have a backbone, any spine. You write it!”
He had said, “If you don’t sign it then the whole night I have to sit here, you have to sit here. Neither can you sleep, nor can I. If you sign, then you can go to the cell and you can go to sleep.”
I said, “I will not write it. I can sit the whole night here, but I will not do anything illegal. You write the name, you fill in the form. I will simply sign it. I don’t want to keep you awake the whole night.”
So he filled in the form. And that was my strategy, that he fill in the form in his own handwriting so that becomes the proof that I have not filled in the form. And I signed my own signature. He looked at my signature and said, “What have you signed?”
I said, “It must be David Washington. Can’t you read?” He looked at it – it was in Hindi; I always sign in Hindi. And I told him, “You will repent for it. You cannot keep me forever in jail without my having committed any crime. Soon the whole world will know. Most probably tomorrow morning all the television channels and all the newspapers will know.”
While I had been going from the airport to the jail, there was also a girl who was going to be released that night. So I had told her, “You just listen to whatsoever happens between me and the Marshal. You are going to be released, and outside there will be hundreds of news media people. Simply go out and tell them everything that you have heard. Just be alert and listen carefully to what transpires between me and the US Marshal.”
And she did a perfect job. As she went out she immediately told the news media people, and the next morning at six o’clock it was all over America. By seven they had to change my jail again.
I asked the US Marshal, “What happened? Why are you changing jails so soon? Now you are afraid that news people will start coming to see the form that you have filled in in your own handwriting, and which you have forced me to sign. But I have signed my own name – it is not David Washington. And my signature is known all over the world, so there is no way of deceiving.
“And what was the reason that you wanted me to sign under a false name? The only reason could be that, even if you killed me, there would be no trace left of where I disappeared – my name would not be in your registers, in your forms: I have never entered the jail; David Washington entered the jail. Nobody would suspect that I could be David Washington, and you can release David Washington tomorrow.”
Those twelve days were a great experience for many reasons. I could see that what America pretends to the whole world – that it is a democracy – is all nonsense, it is a hypocrisy. It is as fascist as any fascist country has been; just the mask is of democracy.
They moved me into five jails in twelve days, and I was surprised to see that there was not a single white man in five jails. Each jail had five hundred people, six hundred people…all black. It was a strange thing. I asked people en masse, “What is the matter? Looking at the jails it seems as if America is a black country, or perhaps no white man commits any crime. Why are all the jails full of black people?”
All are young, and the strangest thing is that they were all arrested just like me, without trial, without any arrest warrant, without being told why they were being arrested. There were people who told me that they had been waiting for nine months in the jails. And they went on being told, “Your trial is coming, your trial is coming” – and the trial never comes.
This is absolutely against any democratic principles – punishing a person without proving his crime before a court. Now, for nine months you have already punished a person, and perhaps the court will release him; he has not committed any crime. He is not even aware that he has done anything. I figured out that the reason is not crime, the reason is that young, black people are rebellious, and they have become a danger. So in the name of crime, fill all the jails with all the young people and keep them there.
After twelve days I was brought to the court. That was the last fascist strategy to be seen, because there was no case. So the US Attorney was worried: now what were they going to put before the court? So they asked my attorneys for negotiations – before the trial began, for negotiation.
For twelve days they harassed me in every possible way: they did not let me sleep for twelve days; I could not eat anything – I lost eight pounds in weight. Just before the trial began, they asked my attorneys for a negotiation. And the proposal that they brought was really cunning and absolutely inhuman.
The proposal was: “We know that Rajneesh will say he is not guilty, that perhaps finally he will win the case, but we are not going to give him bail; the whole government is bent upon not giving him bail. If he says he is not guilty then we will not give him bail. And you can understand that if the government wants, it can prolong the trial for ten years, and he will have to remain in jail for ten years.
“He may win, but then you have to understand that it can take any amount of time. We will go on changing courts, we will go on postponing, we will go on changing judges. We can do anything” – they said it clearly. “The only way is for Rajneesh to agree to plead guilty. Then we will not go for a trial, we will release him.”
My attorneys came back with tears in their eyes – and they were not our sannyasins, they were the best attorneys in America. But during these twelve days they became very much involved with me. One of the best attorneys perhaps in the whole world, the head of the law department in a California university, Peter Schey, started loving me so much that he came to see me in jail. He said, “I cannot sit on a chair in front of you. I will sit down just as your sannyasins sit down.”
They came with tears in their eyes saying, “The Attorney General’s people have made such a proposal that we will have to choose a jail for you for ten years to twelve years. And who knows what they will do? We cannot know. They may kill you. And your sannyasins all over the world will suffer, your whole movement will suffer. And they know perfectly well that they have no way to win.
“So now they are trying this strategy, that if you agree to plead guilty they will withdraw the case, and you will be released. Perhaps for five years you will not be allowed to enter into America.” They said, “It hurts us to ask you to agree to plead guilty, because you are not guilty. We were here to help you and we have come with a proposal that you have to accept. But it is better to accept and get rid of it; otherwise we will be helpless, and we don’t know what they will do.”
Seeing the whole situation – my sannyasins were fasting, not eating, and they were in immense misery and anguish – I said to them, “Don’t be worried, I will agree to plead guilty. My agreement does not mean that I am guilty. Once I am out of the court I will say to the press and to the whole world that this is the way they forced my attorneys: by asking me to agree to plead guilty.”
I agreed to plead guilty, and I was released. The judge was perfectly aware of all the negotiations, because on two points they wanted me to accept I was guilty. They had a list of twenty points, but only on two points, specifically, did they want me to say I was guilty. And the judge asked only about those two points, “Are you guilty or not?” So that means he was clearly aware of the negotiations and the whole process and the whole strategy.
And because I agreed to plead guilty, he imposed a fine of four hundred thousand dollars – which was not part of the negotiations. So all the way lying…! It must have been in their minds. With the judge it must have been settled, that once I accepted the guilty plea then of course the judge was capable of fining me. They never brought it up in the negotiations. All that was said was that for five years I would not be able to enter America. But this half a million dollars, now the judge was capable…
The whole thing was so absurd. First you ask me to take the oath that I will not speak anything but the truth. Then you force me to lie and say that I am guilty. And then on that lie you fine me four hundred thousand dollars and five years expulsion from America.
And still this was not enough for them. When I arrived back at the jail to take my clothes and other things, the ground floor was absolutely empty. I inquired of the sheriff, “What is the matter? It was always occupied with all kinds of departmental people.”
He said, “Perhaps it is a change of shift.”
I said, “But this is not the way. It happens every day that first the people come and take charge, then the other people leave. But nobody is here; everybody is gone. It looks a little strange.” I could see perspiration on his forehead. I said, “You look a little nervous.”
He said, “No, I am not nervous.” He left me inside the prison. There was only one man in the room, and he immediately went out, leaving me there. That one man gave me the box with my clothes and told me that he had to look for his boss for a signature on the form. Later on I came to know that there was no need for any boss or any signature; only my signature was needed to prove that I had received my things.
He locked the door, went out, and came back after fifteen minutes – he was also almost trembling. I took my clothes out, and they opened the doors – there were three electric doors – one by one. And as I reached the hotel, the news came that a bomb had been found exactly in the same room where I had been left alone for fifteen minutes. Perhaps they could not manage the timing, because it was not certain when the court would release me; I came a little earlier.
Because there was no trial and no argument, I simply agreed to plead guilty. The judge fined me and the case was finished within two minutes. So perhaps their timing was according to the court, and the court was to close at five o’clock. They must have reached the room nearabout three o’clock, two hours earlier, and they could not manage to have me sit there for two hours.
The bomb in the waiting room could not have been put there by anybody except the authorities. And that was the reason the ground floor was empty. That was the reason the man who had brought me there immediately left. That was the reason that the other man who had given me my clothes immediately went to look for his boss – which was a lie because there was no need of any signature, just my signature was needed. And that was the reason they were all nervous and perspiring – they were afraid for their lives. And this is a democracy!
But still I say forgive them, for the simple reason that whatever they are doing is going to destroy them. They are bringing their own death closer to them.
And they are repenting. In all five jails, without exception, every jailer told me, “We have never had such a person in our jail!” – because from all over the world there were calls, twenty-four hours a day. Telegrams in thousands, and flowers were coming from all over the world. They had no place in the jail to put so many thousands of flowers, so from the first jail I made it a point to send the flowers to the schools, colleges, universities, to the students – in my name, from me, with my blessings.
The first sheriff told me, “You are absolutely safe, for the simple reason that the whole world’s eyes are fixed on you. And no harm can be done to you; otherwise America will lose all its credibility. They cannot even touch your body.” And that was true – they could not touch my body.
They started repenting that they had created an unnecessarily stupid thing because the whole of the news media turned in my favor, the whole of America turned in my favor. People who had never known me, who heard my name for the first time, were sympathetic towards me and against the government. Inmates who had seen me on the television – and they were criminals – they were all for me. They loved me immensely.
So there is no need to be angry, there is no need to carry any complaint. Whatever they have done, they will have to reap the crop also. They have exposed themselves. And this is the way all these vested interests have been behaving with people who stand for truth. So it is not new. They have put me in the same category as Socrates and al-Hillaj and Sarmad…and that is a great credit.
And now they are trying in every possible way, pressurizing the Indian government – because they help with money so they have power over all these poor countries – that no Western media should be allowed to reach me. That’s why the Italian television crew were refused – because all the Indian embassies have been informed by the Indian government that no news media should reach to me, no sannyasin from outside India should reach to me.
Their whole effort is to isolate me so that the movement suffers and I cannot expose them. To prevent the news media reaching me means I cannot expose them. They are wrong. If the news media cannot reach me, I can reach the news media. I am going around the world. And wherever they can pressurize…
Here, immediately, the American ambassador protested to the king that I should not be allowed to remain in Nepal. In Germany, they pressurized the government to make sure that I could not enter Germany. And they have made a law that I cannot enter Germany. I have never been in Germany! I have not committed any crime in Germany. This is just unprecedented – that you prevent a person, who has not done anything on your land, from entering your country.
They had to give some reason, and the reason they have shown is so stupid. The reason is because I am not of any help to Germany why should I be allowed to enter? But that should be the case with everybody who enters Germany: whether he is a help to Germany or not. Only for me a special category – that I am not a help to Germany, so why should I be allowed? Then no tourist should be allowed unless he is a help to Germany.
But one thing that makes me glad is that a single man without any power can frighten the greatest power in the world, can shake it from its very roots.
I will be going around the world. If I cannot enter Germany I will be outside Germany, and my people can come to me. They cannot prevent German sannyasins from coming to me.
I will manage to expose them. There is no need to be angry with them. Just expose them, bring their true face before the world – that’s enough.

Spread the love