۞ ∞ United For Evolution ∞ ۞
Yesterday you talked about destroying the family. Did you ever have a family?
Everybody is born in a family. I was born in a family. And in India there are joint families, big families. IN MY FAMILY THERE MUST HAVE BEEN FIFTY TO SIXTY PEOPLE -- all the cousins, uncles, aunts, living together. I have seen the whole mess of it. In fact, those sixty people helped me not to create my own family. That experience was enough.
IF YOU ARE INTELLIGENT ENOUGH, YOU LEARN EVEN FROM OTHER PEOPLE'S MISTAKES. If you are not intelligent, then you don't learn even from your own mistakes. So I learned from my father's mistake, my mother's mistake, my uncles', my aunts'. It was a big family, and I saw the whole circus, the misery, the continuous conflict, fights about small things, meaningless. From my very childhood ONE THING BECAME DECISIVE IN ME, that I was not going to create a family of my own.
I was surprised that everybody is born in a family... and why does he still go on creating a family? Seeing the whole scene, he again repeats it.
WHEN I CAME BACK FROM MY UNIVERSITY, finishing all my studies, my father was worried -- because he knew me, that if I say no once, then there is no way to change it. So he would not ask me directly. He told my mother, "You should ask, is he willing to get married? Whomsoever he wants... we will not put any conditions of caste, religion, anything, but he should get married."
When I was going to sleep, my mother told me, "You can get married to any girl you want. We have no objections."
I said, "I have no objections either. I just want you to think over it for two weeks: ARE YOU REALLY HAPPY? Have you not thought many times that it would have been better if you had not got into this mess of getting married, producing eleven children, living in this circus of sixty people, where everything goes wrong, everybody is on everybody else's necks? YOU THINK FOR TWO WEEKS, AND THEN YOU TELL ME. If you think that this has been a great experience, I will get married, but the responsibility will be yours. It is a question of my whole life. I AM RISKING MY WHOLE LIFE ON YOUR DECISION."
Just after three days my mother came back and she said, "Two weeks are too much. I cannot sleep, I cannot do anything. You just free me from this responsibility."
I said, "What happened?"
She said, "I don't want to decide about your marriage."
I said, "But this is a decision."
She said, "I understand. I will not say to you to get married."
And I said to her, "Tell my father that there is no need to go roundabout. He should directly encounter me." But he was afraid because he knew that I would bring everything to his notice that HIS WHOLE LIFE HE HAD SUFFERED -- AND STILL HE WANTED ME to get into the same kind of situation.
He did not ask me. HE BROUGHT A SUPREME COURT ADVOCATE. He was his friend, and he was one of the best advocates in India. And he said, "My boy is too argumentative. Perhaps you can manage it."
He said, "Don't be worried. I have never lost any case in my life. I am coming with you, and I will see what kind of arguments he has got. This is my profession; the whole of my life I have been arguing."
The moment he came, I said to him, "First things first."
He said, "What do you mean?"
I said, "I mean that if I win, then I don't get married. If I don't win, then I get married. But if you get defeated, you will have to divorce."
He said, "It is strange. Then I will have to think about it."
I said, "But you have never lost any case in your life, and this is a small case, and there is no judge. I choose you as the judge too, because I trust you. From my very childhood I have loved you, and I know you cannot be unfair. So let us have the argument. I know you and I know your wife, and I know that TWICE YOU HAVE TRIED TO COMMIT SUICIDE."
He said, "My God! That means I will have to divorce my wife? Call your father. I don't want to get into this trouble."
They tried. Before my father died, he told me with tears in his eyes, "I AM HAPPY THAT WE COULD NOT SUCCEED IN FORCING YOU TO GET MARRIED and lead a normal kind of life. We were worried about you... who would take care of you? But you have proved that IF YOU TRUST EXISTENCE, EXISTENCE TAKES CARE, it is very compassionate."
So I don't have any family of my own. BUT I HAVE A VERY BIG FAMILY OF MY SANNYASINS, all around the world. So wherever I go, I'm at home. It makes no difference. Just two days before, I was in Nepal and as much at home as I am at home here.
I HAVE CREATED A FAMILY OF A TOTALLY DIFFERENT KIND. A million people belong to my family. Their love is unconditional. I have nothing to give them except myself. But they have given me their hearts, and without any reason... I am not a religious leader, I am not a politician; I am not giving any promises, I am not giving you any hopes.
I am simply talking to you, to be yourself -- a simple teaching, the simplest, without any jargon -- and yet I HAVE ESTABLISHED THE GREATEST FAMILY IN THE WHOLE WORLD, in the whole history of man.
"Do your sannyasins obey your view about destroying the family?"
OBEDIENCE IS NOT MY TEACHING. Disobedience is not a sin. I explain to my people my understanding, and then it is their freedom to do whatsoever they want to do. IT IS NOT A QUESTION OF OBEYING ME, it is a question of obeying their own intelligence.
MY APPEAL IS TO THEIR INTELLIGENCE. I explain as clearly as possible, and then leave it to them. I don't take their freedom of decision, and whatsoever they decide, I am happy with it -- because I love their individuality and I want to enhance their individuality as much as I can. Their yes is good, their no is good. It makes no difference, because it is coming out of their love, out of their understanding.
I DON'T WANT FOLLOWERS, OBEDIENT PEOPLE.
I want intelligent friends, fellow travelers.
And once I have said anything, I NEVER ENQUIRE WHETHER ANYBODY IS FOLLOWING IT OR NOT. I go on towards other things. I have so many things...
But I am happy with my people, immensely happy, and grateful. It is difficult to find in history any instance of so many beautiful, intelligent people following a human being who is not pretending to be a savior or a prophet or a god, who is just saying, "I am as ordinary as you are -- with just a little difference: I am awake and you are asleep. But it is not much of a difference... you can open your eyes any moment."
Socrates Poisoned Again After 25 Centuries
Ch #5: Existence does not like carbon copies