Chapter 14: Changing the Direction of Energy
When the child is born the child is helpless. The human child, particularly, is totally helpless. He has to depend on others to be alive, to remain alive. This dependence is a bargain. The child has to give many things in this bargain, and sensitivity is one. The child is sensitive; his whole body is sensitive. But he is helpless, he cannot be independent; he has to depend on parents, on family, on society; he will have to be dependent. Because of this dependence and helplessness, the parents, the society, go on forcing things on the child, and he has to yield. Otherwise he cannot remain alive, he will die. So he has to give many things in this bargain.
The first very deep and significant thing is sensitivity: he has to leave it. Why? Because the more the child is sensitive, the more he is in trouble, the more he is vulnerable. A slight sensation, and he begins to cry. The cry has to be stopped by the parents, and they cannot do anything. But if the child goes on feeling every detail of sensation, the child will become a nuisance. And children do become nuisances, so parents have to curtail their sensitivity. The child has to learn resistance, the child has to learn control. And by and by the child has to divide his mind into two. So there are many sensations which he just stops feeling because they are not “good” - he is punished for them.
The child’s whole body is erotic. He can enjoy his fingers, he can enjoy his body; the whole body is erotic. He goes on exploring his own body; it is a great phenomenon for him. But the moment comes in his exploration when the child gets to the genitalia. Then it becomes a problem because the father and mother are all repressed. The moment the child, boy or girl, touches the genitalia, the parents become uneasy. This is to be observed deeply. Their behavior suddenly changes, and the child notes it. Something wrong has happened. They start crying, “Don’t touch!” Then the child starts feeling that something is wrong with the genitalia, he has to suppress. And the genitals are the most sensitive part of your body - the most sensitive, the most alive part of your body, the most delicate. Once the genitalia are not allowed to be touched and enjoyed, you have killed the very source of sensitivity. Then the child will become insensitive. The more he will grow, the more he will be insensitive.
So first there is a bargain - necessary, but evil. And the moment one begins to understand, this bargain has to be thrown and you have to regain your sensitivity. The second reason for this bargain is because of security.
I was with a friend for many years; I lived in his bungalow. From the very first day I observed that he would not look at his servants. He was a rich man, but he would never look at his servants, he would never look at his children. He would come running into the bungalow, then he would go running from his bungalow to his car. So I asked him, “What is the matter?”
He said, “If you look at your servants they start feeling friendly, and then they start asking about money and this and that. If you talk with your children, then you are not the master, then you cannot control them.” So he created a facade of insensitivity around himself. He was afraid that if he talked with a servant, if he should feel that the servant was ill, if he sympathized, then he would have to give some money or some help.