I want you to see the distinction clearly. The pseudo master is interested in satisfying his own ego, how many disciples he has. He is not really concerned with the welfare of the disciple or his growth. His concern is political.
Hindus are worried that the constitution of India allows Mohammedans to marry four women. Now Hindus are worried that sooner or later the Mohammedans will increase in population. The Hindu has only one wife. Even if he produces a child every year, he cannot compete with the Mohammedan. The problem is of the population, because the politics – who is going to be in power – will depend on the population.
What authority has the Vatican pope about truth? What experience, what enlightenment? But still he has six hundred million Catholics around the world. Naturally he is the biggest religious leader. His greatness is not in his experience, his greatness is in the number of followers. And throughout the centuries all the religions have been killing others and converting others to their religion. “Either you come into my religion, or you cannot live.” That has been the attitude of the Mohammedans, that has been the attitude of the Christians. Nobody seems to be interested in the individual. They are all on power trips.
Zen gives you a totally different climate. Sometimes masters have even sent their followers to other masters who are against them. It is a very strange phenomenon to the modern eyes, sending someone to your own opponent. But we have to look deep down: if the person can grow more easily in the climate that the opponent master has created, then there is no hesitation in sending him to the other master.
It was a constant transfer of disciples from one master to another. And sometimes it used to be that a master would seem to the disciple too hard and the opponent master would look more soft. The disciple himself would escape to the other master’s monastery.
One case I remember…A disciple escaped from his master’s monastery because the master was continuously beating, slapping. And he had heard about another master just a few miles away in the mountains who was very soft and very loving, very nice to be with. So he escaped. When he reached to the other master, the other master asked, “Why have you left your own master?”
He told the reason, “He is too hard. He beats, he slaps. And I have heard you are so nice and so loving. That’s why I have come here.”
The master immediately slapped him and told him, “You idiot, you don’t understand the compassion of your master. Just go back! Are you in search of a nice companionship? Are you interested only, urgently, in searching for the truth? Your master is a great man. We don’t agree in our principles, that is something aside. As far as his compassion and love are concerned, he is far greater than me. I can only be nice to you.