Yesterday, the whole day I saw many sannyasins give sympathy to Anam after your discourse. Could you please comment?
Sympathy is not compassion; it is just the opposite. Sympathy is a kind of exploitation of the other person. When you sympathize with somebody, you are higher, better, and the other is lower, falling, degraded. Your ego gets immense satisfaction out of sympathy. But this is how the unconscious mind functions. You don’t know exactly what you are doing.
These sannyasins who sympathized with Anam must have been the same people who had raised their hands here against him. Now, this is strange. You raise your hands against him, and then you start feeling a little guilty. When you see him, you want to compensate for the guilt, so you hug him. And it is an enjoyable moment for you, because the other is in need of your sympathy. You are the giver, the other is the beggar.
If a few of you did it to Anam, it was ugly, inhuman, against the dignity of an individual. You should have given him your compassion. In the dictionaries they mean the same, but not in actual life.
Compassion means making the other aware that he is going astray, that what he has done is not good. You are not putting him down, you are trying to raise him up. You are not saying, “You are alright as you are,” you are making it clear: “Something is wrong in your attitude, and being your friend, being part of the commune, it is our duty to draw your attention to it, so that you can drop that attitude.”
Nobody is right or wrong, only attitudes. And attitudes can be dropped, changed. If you were really compassionate you would have made it more clear to him again and again, all over the commune, wherever he went. It should have been emphasized, “Your attitude is wrong, and you are capable of dropping the attitude. We are in total support of you, we love you, that’s why we want you to drop the attitude.”
Why did I waste my time on Anam? Do you think I was criticizing him? Do you think I was saying anything against him? Then you have missed the point. I love the person, but he can be even more lovable. I love the person, that’s why I pointed out to him that his attitude will hinder his growth. Yes, it looks a little hard. But only love can be hard, because only love can change you.
Your sympathy was phony, because here you were raising your hands, and with those same hands you were hugging Anam. Either your raising the hands was phony, or hugging Anam was phony. You should not have double faces, that here you show one mask before me, and when you meet Anam you show another mask. Stop this stupid game, because in this game you are the loser, a person who is not integrated, who is not one.