Chapter 9: Just to Be Born Is Not Enough to Be Alive
How many Hindu monks do you think there are? Five million right now. Five million Hindu monks, continuously exploiting the poor masses.because they have to be fed. The masses themselves are starving, and they have to feed these parasites. But these parasites are respected, for the simple reason that they give consolation to the poor.
Each religion has found some way of consoling the poor. Jainas, Hindus, Buddhists - these three great Indian religions - say to the poor: “You are poor because in your past life you committed sins.” Accept your poverty, just as a punishment. If you try to avoid it you will be spoiling your next life too. It is better to be finished with it in this life, so that in the next life you will not be in such pain, in such suffering. The rich people are not rich because they have created wealth, or exploited, or done something; they are rich because in the past life they were virtuous. And what is virtue? To be poor, to torture yourself, to commit a slow suicide - that is virtue. “So you are fortunate that you are born poor; you have been given a great opportunity to exercise virtue. Don’t miss it; accept it.”
Hence, there has been no revolution in India. India must have been the oldest country which has been suffering for thousands of years in poverty - but not a single revolution from the poor, not even the idea of a revolution. Nobody in ten thousand years has even mentioned the idea that the poor should rebel against their situation. No, if you rebel against your situation you are missing an opportunity.
You will be surprised: there is a Jaina sect still alive, and very prominent - Terapanth is the name of the sect. They have seven hundred monks and one head, Acharya Tulsi, who is just like a pope to the sect. I have been fighting with him for years on each and every point. Their philosophy is the logical conclusion of the theory of karma, so nobody can speak against them - I must have been the only person who has challenged Acharya Tulsi. He was surprised. He said, “But this is what the whole country believes, we have just brought it to its logical conclusion.”
What is the logical conclusion? You will be surprised. They believe that if a person is drowning in the river, and shouting, “Help me! Save me!” you simply go on your way. He is suffering because of his past life’s bad actions. Don’t disturb him, because if you save him he will have to suffer again. Let it be finished, once and forever. If you save him, in his next life maybe he will again have to fall in a river and drown. So why prolong his suffering? Let him close the chapter. He had done the bad action, now he is reaping the crop. He has sown the seed somewhere in the past, who are you to disturb and interfere? You simply go on your way.