Chapter 10: Of the New Idol and of the Flies of the Marketplace
Anybody who has any insight into human affairs will be against the state, because the state is a symbol of man’s slavery.
Although the state goes on saying, “I am the servant of the people,” the reality is just the opposite. These servants become the masters because they have power, they have the whole bureaucracy, they have weapons. And all this power is being used against those few individuals who are rebellious - rebellious against the untrue, rebellious against the dead tradition, rebellious against all kinds of superstitions.
The day I entered America, the first question that was asked of me was, “Are you an anarchist? If you are an anarchist, you cannot enter America.”
I said, “I am something more.”
The immigration officer looked puzzled, because according to the instructions of the government, there is no way to prevent a person who is something more than an anarchist.
I said, “Anarchism is out of date.”
But from that very first day my conflict with the American government started. Such a great power is afraid of a man who is an anarchist. And what hypocrisy that they go on saying that everybody has freedom of thought, freedom of expression..
Anarchism is also an ideology. Anarchism simply says that the state is not needed, that it is one of the greatest calamities, created by the weak against strong individuals; but the whole progress has happened through those strong individuals.
There is certainly a need for a kind of functional organization, but it should not be more than functional; it should not give status and power to the people who are in the government.
Just the other day I saw a picture of a great scholar, who is thought to be one of the best as far as the Hindu Vedas and the Upanishads are concerned, Pandit Ravi Shankar. And he is bowing down to president Zail Singh and receiving a reward. For Zail Singh, Sanskrit is Greek and Latin. Even Hindi he does not know. English he has heard, but he does not understand. He knows only Punjabi - and has no guts.
While he was president thousands of Sikhs were killed, the sanctity of their holy temple was destroyed, but he did not raise his voice. In fact he was made the president only because he is without courage, without intelligence.
I felt sorry for Pandit Ravi Shankar. He should not have accepted that reward; and bowing down to a man who knows nothing he has also exposed himself - that his knowledge is only verbal. He may be clever as far as language and grammar are concerned, but he knows nothing as far as the meaning of the Vedas and the Upanishads is concerned.