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Chapter 7: Take No Notice

That’s the difference between a saint and a sage. A saint follows the path of self-cultivation. He practices non-violence, like Mahatma Gandhi; he practices truth, truthfulness; he practices sincerity, honesty. But these are all practices. And whenever you are practicing non-violence, what are you doing? What is really happening inside you? You must be repressing violence. When you are practicing - when you have to practice - truth, what does it mean? It simply means untruth arises in you and you repress it and you go against it, and you say the truth. But the untruth has not disappeared from your being. You can push it downwards into the very basement of your being; you can throw it into the deep darkness of the unconscious. You can become completely oblivious of it. You can forget that it exists, but it exists and it is bound to function from those deep, dark depths of your being in such a subtle way that you will never be aware that you are still in its grip - in fact, far more so than before because when it was consciously felt you were not so much in its grip. Now the enemy has become hidden.

That’s my observation of Mahatma Gandhi. He observed, cultivated non-violence; but I have looked deeply into his life and he is one of the most violent men this century has known. But his violence is very polished; his violence is so sophisticated that it looks almost like non-violence. And his violence has such subtle ways that you cannot detect it easily. It comes from the back door; it is never at the front door. You will not find it in his drawing-room; it is not there. It has started living somewhere in the servants’ quarters at the back of the house where nobody ever goes, but it goes on pulling his strings from there.

For example, if ordinarily you are angry, you are angry with the person who has provoked it. Mahatma Gandhi would be angry with himself, not with the person. He would turn his anger upon himself; he would make it introverted. Now it is very difficult to detect it. He would go on a fast, he would become suicidal, he would start torturing himself. And in a subtle way he would torture the other by torturing himself.

In his ashram, if somebody was found drinking tea.. Now tea is so innocent, but it was a sin in Mahatma Gandhi’s ashram. These ashrams exist by creating guilt in people; they don’t miss any opportunity to create guilt. That is their trade-secret, so no opportunity has to be missed. Even tea is enough; it has to be used. If somebody is found drinking tea, he is a sinner. He is committing a crime - far more than a crime, because a sin is something far deeper than a crime. If somebody was found..

And people used to drink tea. They would drink tea in hiding; they had to hide. Just to drink tea they had to be thieves, deceivers, hypocrites! That’s what your so-called religions have done to millions of people. Rather than making them spiritual they have simply made them, reduced them to hypocrites.

They would pretend that they didn’t drink tea, but once in a while they would be found red-handed. And Gandhi was searching, looking; he had agents planted to find out who was going against the rules. And whenever somebody was found he would be called.and Gandhi would go on a fast to punish himself.

“What kind of logic is this?” you will ask. It is a very simple logic. In India it has been followed for centuries. The trick is that Gandhi used to say, “I must not yet be a perfect master, that’s why a disciple can deceive me. So I must purify myself. You could deceive me because I am not yet perfect. If I was perfect nobody could deceive me. How can you imagine deceiving a perfect master? So there is some imperfection in me.”

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