The Catholic pope is elected, so naturally the politically minded cardinals make every effort to approach all those people – perhaps there are two hundred cardinals who choose the pope – so there is an undercurrent of campaign, an election campaign, continuously. Even when there is a pope the campaign continues because popes don’t live long, for the simple reason that by the time the person becomes a pope he’s nearabout seventy. So you can hope that within two, three, four or five years he will be gone.
This Polack is going to be tough – you cannot hope that he will be gone so easily, he may stay longer. His predecessor was only in office for nine months – that is more gentlemanly, but who expects a Polack to be a gentleman? That was more gentlemanly: in nine months he disappeared to give an opportunity for another person to become a pope. But very few people are so generous.
Hinduism tried to ensure that their religion would have many heads; all would be nominated. But then there is another problem: great confusion. Hinduism is a great confusion – you can’t even call it one religion. It is a thousand and one religions together, because there is no central control. Anybody can gather disciples and can become a head and nobody can prevent it.
The idea was to give freedom but it turned out to be confusion. Any idiot can find a few other idiots who are always available everywhere. There are so many sects in Hinduism; each sect has many sub-sects and each sub-sect has its own head. They don’t even have a talking relationship with the other heads of the same religion! They are continually fighting in the courts because sometimes it happens that two persons claim that they are the head and if they can give some kind of proof…
One of the most important temples in India for Hindus is in the Himalayas, Badrinathdham. For almost ten years it has been locked under police control because the court is unable to decide who the head is, because the Shankaracharya who died ten years ago wrote two wills. He wrote one will perhaps twenty, thirty years earlier when he found somebody who was potentially very capable, and he forgot about the will because he lived so long. For thirty years he must have kept it somewhere. That man stole the will.
And when the Shankaracharya was dying he was asked – by that time that man had left him – so he chose another person and made another will; the first will could not be found in his papers. Now before the Allahabad High Court there are two wills from the same man and both persons are claiming that they are the head. And the temple is one of the richest temples in India so it is not only a question of being head: it has money, it has power, it has lands – and it has millions of followers.
But both wills are from the same man. Now, how to decide? The signature experts have decided that both signatures are from the same man. There are eyewitnesses for both. But neither Shankaracharya is able to function because the court goes on postponing, simply for the reason that they don’t see any way of deciding it. They are simply hoping that one of these two dies, so that will decide the case. Otherwise it won’t be decided.