Chapter 9: A God Is a Despot
Arjuna fought the war. Krishna was responsible, five thousand years ago, for destroying this country by giving a false argument, absolutely fictitious, to Arjuna. That war killed so many people. And it is not only that it killed people, it also destroyed the courage of the country; it became afraid of any small calamity.
Two thousand years of slavery.I want to make it absolutely clear that the people who are responsible for these two thousand years of slavery are the greatest people of India. The list is headed by Krishna; Arjuna is just his shadow. Then came Mahavira, who taught people to be nonviolent to such an extreme that his followers cannot even cultivate, because plants have life; if you cultivate then you will have to kill the plants when you reap the crop. Gautam Buddha comes third, who taught people to accept, to be contented wherever and with whatever they have - poor, hungry, starving, enslaved, remain utterly contented.
Their teachings were great. This is something to be remembered; otherwise I will be misunderstood by everyone. Their teachings were great, but they never thought about all the implications of their teachings. They never thought that if you teach a country nonviolence, if you teach a country to drop all weapons, when the whole world is not doing that, then you are putting that country in a state of being victimized, exploited by anyone.
And for two thousand years invader after invader came to India, exploited it and went back. Finally Mohammedans came and they thought, “What is the need to go back? We can not only exploit people, but rule them and remain here.” And then came the Britishers and the French and the Portuguese, and they all tried to exploit the country. They all had their small pockets. Britain proved to be far more clever. But the Portuguese had their small islands of Diu, Daman and Goa, and the French had a small portion of the country, Pondicherry. Britain had the whole country.
People have remained starved and hungry, and people have gone on dying because of hunger, and nobody has ever thought that these great principles in some way are responsible for this unfortunate situation that for thousands of years India has had to pass through. And even today nobody is trying to see all the implications. Every great principle has its own black cloud behind it. And unless you understand the black cloud also, you are soon going to be absorbed by the black cloud. If you understand it, you can avoid it.
God seems to be the greatest principle that has been preached to man down the ages, but nobody has looked at its implications. If God created man then man has no individuality of his own, then he cannot claim any dignity, any freedom. There is no question of a puppet declaring, “I want to be free.” If God created the universe, then whatever has happened in the universe has had to happen. It was God’s will. No effort on our part was going to change anything.