People are selling even their lives. What are your soldiers? – and their number must be millions all around the earth. They have sold themselves. Their only function is to kill and be killed. But as far as I can see that is not important; they have killed themselves the day they sold themselves. They may be still breathing, but just to breathe is not life. Trees breathe, vegetables breathe. Cabbages and cauliflowers breathe, but they are not alive and they know nothing of love. They have prices attached to them. Perhaps cabbages are cheaper, cauliflowers a little costly – because cauliflowers are nothing but cabbages with university degrees. But don’t do this to any human being.
And if you cannot purchase a thing, you cannot possess it either. In your deep sleep you even possess your children, without ever becoming aware that the very possession – “This is my child” – is a murder. Children come through you, but they belong to the universe. You are just a passage. But you make every effort that your child should have your family name, your religion, your political ideology. He should be just an obedient object.
When I was a student in the university the government of India passed a resolution, that unless you participated in training for the army, your postgraduate degree could not be given to you. It was compulsory. I approached the vice-chancellor and I said, “I would love to remain without any postgraduate degree. I am not willing to participate in a training which is nothing but a very psychological process of destroying your consciousness, your life, and reducing you to just a number.”
In the army, when somebody dies, on the notice board it is declared, “Number sixteen has fallen.” When you read that “Number sixteen has fallen,” nothing happens to your heart because number sixteen has no wife, no children, no old mother, no old father to be taken care of. Numbers don’t produce children. This is a strategy. But if you see a name, you will suddenly feel sad. What will happen to the children, to the wife, to the old mother, to the old father who was just living to see his son coming back home? But he does not know that his son no longer exists. He has become number sixteen. Number sixteen can be replaced and will be replaced. Somebody else will become number sixteen.
You cannot replace a living human being – but a dead number? But it is not only the soldiers: if you look at yourself, in many ways you have allowed the crowd around you to make you a number. Even the people who say that they love you simply want to possess you, to exploit you. You are an object of their longings, of their desires.
Love is not available in the marketplace. For love, you will have to understand that existence is not a dead existence. It is full of light, overflowing with love, but to experience that love you have to be attuned with the world of values.
Almustafa did not answer some people. Perhaps they were not worth answering. They have lost their souls: somebody has become a governor, somebody has become a president. Presidents and governors and prime ministers don’t have any souls; otherwise it would be impossible for a man like Joseph Stalin to kill one million Russians. And these were not capitalists – Russia has never been rich – these were poor people, but they did not want to be possessed by anyone and they were rebelling against slavery. First the czars were killing them for centuries, but Stalin outdid all the czars.