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OSHO Online Library   »   The Books   »   Reflections on Khalil Gibran's The Prophet
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Chapter 12: The Wine and the Winepress

When I was in America, I felt that Charles Darwin had come a little too early. That happens to all geniuses. He proved, as far as the evidence was available at the time, that man has come from the monkeys. Have you seen the monkeys? They are continuously chewing something or other. But he failed to find the missing link, because between the monkeys and man there is a big gap. There must have been a link also; he worked his whole life to find it - some animal which is part monkey, part man. That would have put his hypothesis on absolutely certain ground.

Seeing the Americans, I felt very sad for Charles Darwin, because these are the missing link! Either they are eating, or if there is no possibility to contain more. Thirty million Americans are dying because of overeating, and they still continue to eat! It is an obsession.

You cannot behave like monkeys the whole day long while you are awake, but you can at least chew chewing gum - just a substitute so your mouth continues to feel you are eating. Even in your sleep you can go on crushing your teeth together, and there are people - I know them personally - who are eating the whole day; in between chewing gum, smoking cigarettes. In the night you cannot drop the whole day’s practice just because you are asleep. They must be dreaming of delicious food; that’s why they are crushing their teeth.

It is a strange coincidence: in America, thirty million people are dying because they don’t have anything to eat. They are called in America, “street people.” Most of them - almost all of them - are black. They don’t have any shelter, they don’t have anything to eat. And exactly the same number of people, thirty million other Americans - they are all white, without exception - are dying of overeating. The question can be solved for sixty million people within minutes, with just a little understanding. And America goes on sending its missionaries to poor countries!

The logic is clear. They come here and to other poor countries to give food, shelter, clothes, because these poor people can be converted. Those thirty million Americans are already Christians, so there is no need to bother about them. The whole question seems to be how to increase in number, because in the final count the number decides who is powerful.

Another thing: he talks about the newly born being robbed of their mother’s milk. I was speaking in a Jaina conference, which is the only vegetarian community in the whole world, and I said to them, “If you want to be really and totally vegetarian, you have to stop drinking milk and eating milk products also.” Because a cow gives birth to a kid, the milk belongs to the kid. The cow is not giving milk for you.

And have you observed? All other animals, after a short time, stop drinking milk and move to solid food. It is only man who goes on drinking milk to the very end of his life. It must have physiological and psychological consequences; they cannot be avoided.

First, the milk was for the cow’s child, and the cow’s child was going to become a bull; hence the milk has all the chemicals and elements necessary to make a strong bull. And if man drinks the same milk, he is going to become more like a bull than like a man! And on top of it, monogamy, celibacy. Bulls are not known for celibacy. In fact, one bull is enough for hundreds of cows.

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