Chapter 8: This Is the Queen: Cleopatra
But religions have taught you something which is creating the problem. They have condemned you as sinners - how can you become enlightened?
Sin is nothing but error. There is no condemnation in the word - it is just error! And those who err, they learn.
All saints have been sinners. There has never been a saint who has not been a sinner, otherwise how will he come to be a saint? He traveled, he erred, he went astray, he fell a million times, and rose up again. He has reached. The whole journey he has been a sinner. Now he has learned, and now no error happens. He has become wise through sinning, through errors. He knows. He has become enlightened. Out of the darkness of the night is the morn born.
Every saint has been a sinner, and every sinner will become a saint. The past of the saint is bound to be of sin, and the future of every sinner is bound to be of saintliness. So between a saint and a sinner there is only a difference of past and future, that’s all. Don’t feel condemned. Sin in itself is enough, why burden yourself even more with condemnation?
Be alert, that’s all. You will have to commit mistakes, but don’t commit the same mistake again, that’s all. Be alert, watch - and learn! In fact if you ask me, then I will tell you that the world of sin is the world of learning. One cannot learn without it. One has to go deep in sin.
It is just like the roots of a tree: the deeper the roots go, the higher go the branches. A tree grows to a great height, but it depends, is based, on the roots which go deeper and deeper and deeper.
If you come across a great saint you must know that he must have sinned greatly. The roots must go deep! Otherwise how can he know so much? If he has never sinned he will be not innocent but stupid.
There are stupid saints also - to me they are not saints, they are simply afraid people, cowards. They have never sinned, they never went astray, they have always clung to the right path, to the well-trodden path, to the ideology the society has given to them, to the concepts the religion has enforced on their minds, to the conditioning that they have been born into - they have clung to it. They have never moved astray, they are cowards, they have learned nothing. To me, their value is zero. They may be good people, but their goodness is saltless. It has no flavor. It is a little dull and dead.
You will find two types of saints in the world. One, who is saintly out of fear - fear of the hell, fear of the consequences - and never sinned. He is almost a clay saint, not real, he has not achieved anything; and you will not find him wise, because from where will he get the wisdom? He never went astray, how will he become mature? He will be a child, ignorant, foolish and stupid; not harmful, but you cannot learn anything through him. At the most he can teach you his stupidity, his cowardliness.