The first question:
Will you please talk about the desire to help people, its differences and similarities to other forms of desire?
Desire is desire; there is no difference at all. Whether you want to help people or you want to harm people, the nature of desire remains the same.
A buddha does not desire to help people. He helps people, but there is no desire in it; it is spontaneous. It is just the fragrance of a flower that has bloomed. The flower is not desiring that the fragrance should be released, should reach to the winds, to people. Whether it reaches or not is not the concern of the flower at all. If it reaches, that is accidental; if it does not reach, that too is accidental. The flower is spontaneously releasing its fragrance.
The sun rises: there is no desire to wake up people, no desire to open the flowers, no desire to help the birds to sing. It all happens on its own accord.
A buddha helps not because he desires to help; compassion is his nature. Every meditator becomes compassionate, but not a servant of the people. The servants of the people are mischievous; the world has suffered too much from these servants – because it is desire masquerading as compassion. And desire can never be compassionate; desire is always exploitation.
Now they will exploit in the name of compassion; they will exploit with beautiful names. They will talk about service to humanity and they will talk about brotherhood and they will talk about religion and God and truth. And all their beautiful talk will bring only more and more wars, more and more bloodshed – more and more people will be crucified, burned alive.
That’s what has been happening up to now. And if you don’t bring a new understanding to the world, it is going to continue the same way.
So two things to be remembered. One: to desire is the same, whether you desire to help or to harm. It is not a question of the object of desire; the question is of the nature of desire. The nature of desire leads you into the future; it brings the tomorrow in. And with the tomorrow come all the tensions, all the anxieties, “whether I am going to make it or not, whether I am going to succeed or not.”
The fear of failure and the ambition to succeed will be there, whether you desire money or you desire victory in the world or you desire to be compassionate to people or you desire to bring salvation to people. It is all the same game, only names change. This is very fundamental to understand.
A man asked Buddha, “I would like to help people. Instruct me.”