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Chapter 21: Sunrise in the Soviet Union, Sunset in America

The enlightened man naturally goes on creating a paradise wherever he is - in the body or not in the body. But he cannot create a paradise without your agreeing to it. Finally, you are the decisive factor. He can make all the arrangements, and you can refuse them; you can go on living in your hell. The first thing is that you are living in hell. So many times people have asked me, “Does hell exist?” And I have said to them, “You amaze me. You live in it, and you ask me, ‘Does hell exist?’ What is your life? It is not a joy, it is not a dance - you are living a nightmare.”

To live unconsciously is to be in hell, and to live consciously is to be in heaven. To be fully enlightened.it is not that you enter paradise; paradise opens its petals, just like a lotus, in you. It is your innermost potential.

Seeing such unbelievable changes in Russia these past two years, due to Gorbachev’s leadership, do you have a special message for him? Would you at all consider going to Russia if he would have the courage to welcome you and your people? Do you think that one day Russia could be the country of the future of humanity?

Yes, it appears as if unbelievable changes have been happening in Russia in the past two years. But as far as I am concerned, I was waiting for those changes; they are not unbelievable. Sixty years of oppression, exploitation and mass scale butchery were preparing the ground. No night is without a dawn. Sixty years was more than enough; it was absolutely certain that it would come to an end.

Gorbachev is the first ray heralding that the morning has come. Many more changes will be happening in the future. Their speed is going to accelerate, because for sixty years the people have not tasted freedom, have not tasted trust, love; they have known only a fascist regime, which was ready to kill anybody for any small excuse. They have lived under the shadow of death.

I welcome the dawn; the birds have started singing, and the flowers have not forgotten - even in sixty years - that when the sun rises they have to open and release their fragrance.

You are asking me, do I have a special message for this great man, Gorbachev, who is bringing a second revolution in the Soviet Union? Yes, I have a message for him. And my message is not special, but the same as it is for every human being, wherever he exists. But the situation is certainly special. You will have to go a little bit back in the history..

Communism is a reaction against Christianity. Christianity has done so much harm that the intelligentsia - particularly people like Karl Marx, who were geniuses - became so frustrated with Christianity that they created an alternative: a materialist philosophy with no God, with no soul, with no consciousness.

It is understandable - but not forgivable - because Karl Marx was not acquainted with Gautam Buddha, nor was he acquainted with the Eastern flowers of Zen, of Tao, of Yoga. Without knowing anything about authentic religion - he thought that Christianity was equivalent to religion - he created a religionless society. This is moving from one extreme to another extreme.

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