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Chapter 15: The Death of the Old, the Birth of the New

That’s how fanaticism is born. That’s how Christians, Mohammedans and Hindus have lived for centuries. That’s how the foolish mind functions - beware of it. Being a sannyasin does not mean that you have to dislike the non-sannyasins. Never look at anybody as a non-sannyasin, always look at the non-sannyasins as potential sannyasins. They are all potential sannyasins - three days ago you were a non-sannyasin! Love them more because by your love you can help their potential to be actualized. If you dislike them you will become a cause of preventing them from becoming sannyasins. Help them.

This is not the way, but this is how the mind functions. I can understand. Mind is so ugly that it immediately starts creating new trips for the ego; even sannyas can become a trip for the ego. “Now I am a sannyasin, I am special. And the non-sannyasins? They are stupid people.” And just three days ago you were a non-sannyasin - just three days ago. But it does not matter whether it is three days or three years, it is the same. Even after three minutes the mind starts spinning and weaving. It starts walking in a different way, looking at others with condemnation, with that ancient saintly look of “holier than thou.”

Rastus was tired of being black. One day he came across an advertisement in the local paper which said: “Super Omo special skin-whitening cream - makes skin whiter than white.”

Very excited, he purchased a packet and went home. He took a bath and scrubbed himself with the product. When he was finished, he looked in the mirror and found that his skin looked like that of a white man’s.

Ecstatic, he ran out to show his wife who wasted no time in jumping into the bath herself. She too was very happy when she emerged looking like a white lady.

They found their young son and told him, “Hey, boy - this is your chance to become a white boy.”

“But I don’t want to be a white boy.” he exclaimed. “I’m happy the way I am - I’m happy to be black.”

Rastus turned to his wife and said, “You know, I have been white for only one hour and already these blacks are giving me shit.”

Beware of this mind. These are the ways of the mind. A sannyasin has to drop the mind. You have to be alert about the ways the ego takes grip of you. You are not to become holier than others. On the contrary, sannyas simply means an initiation into being ordinary.

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