“By the end of this century the population of India will be one billion. Half the country will be starving. If this is your wish – that half of India cries out in hunger and dies in front of your eyes – then alright, remain stuck to your old ideas. But we cannot be ready to accept that this is the will of God. And if this were the will of God, and if this is the will of God, then it is absolutely necessary to get rid of such a God!”
Before we are able to persuade the people of India to use birth control, it is necessary to change their mental, philosophical, and religious ideas. Then they will have no difficulty in opting for birth control methods on their own.
I was talking to a Christian missionary. He said, “Any method of birth control is against God.”
I said to him, “I would like to ask you one small thing. Your definition of God is that he is omnipotent. And a tiny pill defeats your God! God wants to give birth to a child and a small pill prevents God from doing that. So wouldn’t it be better if you stopped worshipping God and worshipped the Pill instead? The Pill is more potent.”
It is foolish to be told that God is omnipotent and yet be asked not to oppose his will. On the one hand we are told that not a single leaf moves without God’s will and on the other we are asked not to oppose his will. There is a paradox between these two. If not even a leaf moves without his will then we may try birth control in a million ways and yet if he wants to give life to a child he simply can. Our prevention methods won’t help. And if our prevention methods do work, it means it was not God who was giving the child. We have been producing children and shifting the responsibility onto God. And as long as we shift responsibility onto others, we cannot bring a revolution into our lives. One has to take the responsibility upon oneself.
As soon as the Indian mind can be educated…which is not difficult. As I see it, Indian people may be illiterate but they are not unintelligent. They may be distant from the modern world, but they have enough intelligence in them to be able to create the most subtle philosophy – about the absolute, godliness, heaven and hell, ultimate liberation – and they can grasp all of it. If this is the case, won’t they also be able to understand these small, small things? I don’t see why not. I am a total optimist.
What is needed is that in each and every village – the colleges, universities and schools are there, the teachers, professors and students are there – we should make it mandatory that unless and until a student spends two months in the villages, explaining to people about birth control, he won’t be able to obtain his academic degree. And unless and until every teacher spends two months of the summer vacation in the villages explaining birth control to people, he will not qualify for any future promotion. There are so many teachers and so many students in India, and so many people who are not teachers and students but who want to be of some help, some service to India. They should all go from village to village and explain to people that there is no opposition to God in birth control.