Shri Prashant: (Continuing conversation with one of the listeners) In fact, just a few days back I was saying to somebody, that the first leg of the battle I have been fighting has been with the commoners.
I have talked so much about the society, I have talked about what happens within the family, I have talked about the forces of conditioning, media, this-that, social forces, your uncles and aunts, your neighbors, the education system, the school teachers, the college teachers – these are the people I have been talking about a lot.
Now I feel that the next battle will have to be against the big names.
Do you get this?
Because these small ones, the uncles and the aunts, and the school and college teachers, after all they are drawing their ideologies and beliefs from the big names. And as long as the big names are ‘big’, then there is no point fighting the small ones, because the small ones are anyway helpless. The small ones are saying, “We have nothing of our own. We just did what the gods told us. So if you want to liberate us, first go and fight the gods. We are just following.”
And that’s the majority of mankind; they are just following anybody who appears ‘big’, anybody who appears dominating. I am seeing that one will have to… There is no option left. One will have to enter into battle with the big names.
You know, telling somebody that – “your parents have been conditioning you” – is not a very useful statement, because the parents themselves have been conditioned by the ‘big one’. It is the ‘big one’ that is the real evil. And those big ones must be identified and fought.
Listener 1: But Sir the parents do not have an idea, or the acceptance of the fact that those big ones can be wrong.
Shri Prashant: You see, the parents are not evil.
Bulk of mankind is just stupid, not evil. Stupid because it has nothing of its own, it follows. The really evil ones are few. Unfortunately, they gain a lot of followership.
So they are the ones who need to be fought. In fact, most of those who have followership are bound to be evil. Otherwise, from where the followership will come? If you are not evil, then what do you think, the world will be attracted to Truth?
Truth is hardly ever sweet.
Listener 2: Can you name some of those big people?
Shri Prashant: All, all the big names. All, actually – without exception. I need not take one name.
Listener 3: It’s a kind of revolution.
Listener 4: But the biggest danger is, that you win the battle, and then you become the entity which is followed, which is evil.
Shri Prashant: That is always happening. You see, in the market, the various shops that are there, they are always competing with each other. So if your battle is against one particular shop, then you are a part of the market. I am not talking of fighting a shop; I am talking of the market itself. That’s why when he asked, “Name a shop?” I said, “All of them. The entire structure, the whole market.”
Listener 1: Does it mean that the big names set up the rules and the commoners have no choice but to act within those rules only?
Shri Prashant: No, it is just that if you are even a little watchful, you will easily come to see the patterns of the mind, you will easily come to see how it can be tempted, and then it is very easy to break free. All you require is a certain determination, and certain unscrupulousness. That’s all.
The one we call as the ‘common man’ is so willing to be deceived. In fact it is damn easy to deceive him, and extremely difficult to not to deceive him. (Smiles)
If you want to cheat somebody, it is so easy, because the person himself will help you in cheating him.
But if you want to liberate somebody, it is extremely difficult, because the person himself will kill you if you want to liberate him.
That’s the story of Jesus. And it is repeated always, and always, and always. That’s why it is such a captivating story. You want to cheat them, they’ll say, “Yes! Yes! We are prepared. When and where do you want to fleece us?” You’ll say, “No! No! You have the capacity for Truth, you must have Love. You do not need supports, you can fly free.” They’ll say, “What the hell are you talking? You are a dangerous man!”
“Where are the butchers? Call the hangman.”
Listener 2: But maybe the thing is that something must happen between people, some other kind of net. Let’s say what we call some’ Love net’ – it is my own word, that is not a market condition. And you, me or anyone, we are in this, and we are only part of this net. Nobody is subject to it. It strengthens the relationship. It is something which happens ‘between us’, not only something which happens ‘in us’ or ‘out of us’, but ‘between us’.
Shri Prashant: The only thing with this is, that this ‘net’, by its definition, is bound to expand, because Love and Compassion can never be separated. So suppose you have a ‘Love net’ which involves five people. These five will never be content remaining ‘five’ when they see suffering all around them. They will say, “This five must become fifty.” Because that is the very nature of Love, it is compassionate. Or will I say that I have a Love net of five and let it remain at five? Will I say that? I will say, “No, this five must become six, ten, twenty.”
Listener 2: Yes, yes. There is no number.
Shri Prashant: There is no number.
Now this five which you are calling as ‘net’, these five ‘persons’, are the Guru. I will not call them ‘Gurus’. They are ‘the Guru’. So, ‘the Guru’ can even be a group, ‘the Guru’ can even be a net. Usually when we talk of a net, and when you said that it will have no subject, it will just be a net, the desire is that it has to be participative, and it has to be something in which people are all on the same footing. That is the desire, which is wonderful, that there should be no one authority. Instead, it has to be a collaborative effort, a group or a net. The only thing is that then that net will have to become ‘the Guru’.
Listener 2: Yes. This is danger.
Shri Prashant: It is not danger, it is its nature.
Listener 2: If it is again taken as a separate authority.
Shri Prashant: It is not a question of authority. It is its nature. Compassion is not an authority. And if you are talking about authority, of course there is an authority. Truth is an authority. This is another danger, the bigger danger; let me talk of it to you.
You see, if I am so guarded against not becoming an authority, then this guardedness will become a barrier to compassion. I will say, “You are suffering, I see that you are going to dogs, in front of my eyes, but I cannot become an authority. I will only point the Truth to you, I will not actively come to rescue you, even if that means that you are going to continue suffering because my pointing is not sufficient.”
You have been so deeply conditioned, that you cannot gather a hint now, that those subtle ways will not work. Are you getting it? So, of course, it’s wonderful. J. Krishnamurti was the one who talked very strongly about what you are saying. But it has to be remembered that when you say, “There must be no authority,” then that this might be a very egoistic statement, because there is an authority, and that authority is – the Truth. And if that Truth is functioning through you, then how can you block it?
The authority of the Truth is now vested in you. You don’t have the authority, but you are like the minister of the King. The King has all the authority, but now you are acting on the King’s behalf. So you will have to exercise the authority. And if you don’t exercise it, then it is not good for the kingdom.
Listener 5: Sir, and since there can be no objective parameter to find out through whom the Truth is functioning, don’t you think that it is at times necessary and also safe to keep the matter closed?
Shri Prashant: It will not remain closed. Its nature is to blossom.
You are saying, “Is it not safe to keep a bud closed?” The bud will open up, the flower will blossom. That’s its nature.
Listener 5: But when we, as a culture declare that authority is required…
It is not even a matter of declaring, it is a matter of living that way. You can declare anything.
But where is it showing up in your life?
If you are declaring that the Truth is operating through you, then it has to show up in your every single action.
It is not matter of merely announcing. You go on a podium and announce “I am enlightened!” very easy and very tempting. And the next moment you are found chasing a deer to hunt, or a lady to rape.
Listener 5: Is this not the reason that why these markets exist? That we have kept them open? We are saying that Truth functions through persons, and those persons are entitled to have authority.
Shri Prashant: Truth can function through persons as well. Truth has no limitations. It can function through anybody, anything, and anywhere.
Listener 5: And that person, through whom the Truth is functioning, is entitled to have an authority.
Shri Prashant: Not entitled. Who will give the entitlement? It is his own inner responsibility. What you are calling as ‘authority’ sitting there, the person of Truth, calls it as his responsibility.
Are you getting it?
For the kid, what the parent is doing, is an act of authority. For the parent, it is his responsibility. And he cannot run away from this responsibility, even if the kid is a troublesome kid.
Listener 5: Okay, let’s carry forward this metaphor only. There are parents that do commit violence on their children.
Shri Prashant: We are not talking of those parents. You know what we are talking of.
Listener 5: I do. But I am saying that in the guise of this thing, a lot happens. So, is it not safe to keep it closed?
Shri Prashant: Safe for whom? Who is safe? Safe for whom?
Listener 5: Because when we say that authority is valid, that people should hold the authority…
Shri Prashant: I declare it is safe. So? Then what will happen? Who will keep it safe? I declare that – it is safe, that no one must announce that he is an authority. Now who will listen to this statement and hold himself back from announcing?
Based on your question I declare, “Yes, it is the right thing to do. No one must declare himself to be an authority.” Now who is going to listen to this? Only someone who is already Truthful.
And what are we talking of? We are talking of the shops of falseness. They are there. They are a fact. They are already there. You are saying, “Let them monopolise, let them declare, so that they can have a complete control over the gullible masses. And you must declare that there should be no authority, so that even if some Truthful soul is about to disrupt the market, his efforts are nipped in the bud.” That’s what you are saying.
Do you see what a poisonous statement you are making?
You are saying, let all the fraudsters continue because they will anyway not listen to you, and if somebody is trying to make a genuine attempt, you tell him that there should be no authority so that, that attempt is thwarted.
Are the fraudsters going to listen to me? Are the fraudsters going to listen to Kabir or Jesus? That’s the problem with university teaching. You talk so much in terms of ideals and principles, without ever looking at the facts.
To look at the facts, you require a certain sensitivity.
Facts must bother you a little, then you talk reality.
Otherwise you can talk La-la land.
“You must not do this. One must not do this. One must not do that.” People are dying and you will say, “You know, one must not give polio vaccination to kids against their wishes.” And it is not before eighteen that one’s wish can be ascertained. So the polio vaccine that must be given at six months of age, should be administered only at eighteen years of age. Individuality must be respected.
It is not a foolish statement, it is a cruel statement. It can come only from somebody whose mind is so full of textbooks that it has no compassion left.
Listener 2: Principles.
Shri Prashant: Principles. The principles of – Informed choice, Individuality, Adult franchise.
“Wait, have you taken the kids consent? Oh, you haven’t? No, no, then you cannot do it.”
Listener 6: There are all these channels that telecast shows of all the so-called Godmen. And they give a lecture on the Bhagavad Gita and other scriptures. These are prevailing just because of the fact that people believe that these people can also take them to the Truth.
Listener 5: See, nobody has the guts, the courage, to be such a speaker, a global speaker, on any scientific topic. The question is that why anybody, any Tom, Dick Harry, is standing up on the pedestal and preaching.
Shri Prashant: The reason is that you cannot quantify these things, you cannot verify them, you cannot check them. So anybody can say anything and get away with this.
The only way you can check Truth is by being in the Truth.
If I am a man of Truth and somebody is bullshitting in front of me, I will figure him out. But if I am myself totally debauched from Truth, then you can come and say anything, you can say, “There is a heaven which is full of fairies and this and that.” And because I don’t know, so I have no way of saying that you are lying.
To declare something as false, first of all, you must be in the Truth.
Science can be easily verified. Somebody says, “2 + 2 is 6,” you will cross him out.
Listener 7: And that is why there is peaceful existence of all the Godmen.
Shri Prashant: Peaceful existence, because, “You know, I don’t know what I am saying, I don’t know what you are saying, so let us peacefully co-exist.”
“Nobody knows what any of us is saying, so everyone is equally right or equally wrong. So let us all peacefully co-exist.”
Listener 8: Sir, not only Godmen, famous cricketers or famous stars, they are also preaching. Their name also needs to be broken down.
Listener 5: Sir, it is clearly visible today, especially in India, that the number of people who are suffering because of these fraudulent Godmen are more than the number of people who really are in search for True preachers or teacher. So would it not be a case of lack of compassion from our side if we would rather do what we are doing? I am making the same point again, that by keeping it open, we are harming…
Shri Prashant: First of all the fundamental assumption you are making is misplaced.
Anybody who is suffering at their hands, is basically someone who wants freedom. Wants freedom, but is unable to choose the right means. So you are saying, “No, those who are suffering, their number is greater. And those want freedom, their number is smaller.” How is it possible?
Anybody who is suffering, is suffering, only because he wants freedom.
~ Excerpts from a ‘Shabd-Yoga’ session.
Edited for clarity.
Read more articles on this topic:
Article 1: The Real Guru
Article 2: Who is a Guru?