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Chapter 6: To Be or Not to Be

Dale Carnegie has become the prophet of the American way of life. In America, after the Bible, Dale Carnegie’s book has been the biggest seller: How to Win Friends and Influence People. And this is the secret - simple: just go on feeding their egos and you can win people; they will be your friends. You can persuade them even to die for you, because all that they need is support for their personalities, and it has to come from all sources. The priest has to support them, the educational system has to support them, the social system has to support them. And if you cannot find ordinary ways - for example, not everybody can hope to become the prime minister or the president - then you start creating your own small clubs: the Rotary Club, the Lions Club. Now, go to a Lions Club and see how many sheep are gathered there pretending to be lions!

Once I went to a Lions Club meeting in Pune - fifteen years must have passed since then - and thinking that they were lions, I shouted and roared. I was staying at Sohan’s house. When we came back she said, “You were the only lion there, and they were all sheep!” - because they became so afraid. They were so shocked, because I started destroying all their assumptions.

Now there are Rotary Clubs all over the world. The word rotary is because people become president by rotation. So everybody has a chance; you just have to wait for your chance. Sooner or later.first you will become the vice-president, then the president and then the governor, and so on and so forth. They have a very cunning strategy to fulfill everybody’s ego. And then there are committees and chairmen of the committees. No work is done at all!

I have been to Rotary Clubs all over the country, and they have a placard on the president’s table: “We serve.” I have never seen them serving anybody; they must be serving each other. And they do serve each other - they serve each other’s personality. It is a tacit assumption that “I will help your ego, you help my ego.”

Then there are churches and religions: but have you seen the phenomenon? No religion has remained undivided. Why? What happened?

The day Buddha died, Buddhists were divided into thirty-six sects. Why? These people were one when Buddha was alive, and just after Buddha died they started quarreling, as if they were just waiting for Buddha’s death. There must have been many egoists around who wanted to be the chief, but how to be the chief when the Buddha is alive? So they must have waited for their opportunity.

The moment Buddha died, immediately the body was burning on the funeral pyre, and they started playing their political game: “Who is going to be the successor?” Now there were thirty-six pretenders so Buddhism was divided into thirty-six sects.

Christianity could not remain one. Since Christ there have been many sects, many sub-sects, and the greatest division was created by Luther. Luther was one of the most egoistic persons ever. He had nothing to do with Christ, he had nothing to do with Christianity, but he was in a constant fight with the Pope. The Pope was just as egoistic, and Luther refused to submit to the Pope’s ego. He created the Protestant section of Christians.

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