Masto said, “I am going to. This silence is also his. I am simply imitating him. What you are asking me, I had asked him. Then Jawaharlal completed the sentence. And I will tell you,” Masto said, “what the reason was. Jawaharlal said, ‘He may become one day…’ and then came the silence. Perhaps he was weighing something inside, or was not very clear about what to say; then he said, ‘a Mahatma Gandhi.’”
Jawaharlal was giving me the greatest respect that he could. Mahatma Gandhi had been his master, and also the man who decided that Jawaharlal would be the first prime minister of India. Naturally, when Mahatma Gandhi was shot dead, Jawaharlal wept. Speaking on the radio, weeping, he said, “The light has gone out. I don’t want to say anything more. He was our light, now we will have to live in darkness.”
If he had said it to Masto with hesitation, then either he was thinking whether to compare this unknown boy with the world famous mahatma, or he was perhaps weighing between the mahatma and a few other names…and I think that is more probable, because Masto told him, “If I tell that boy, he will immediately say, ‘Gandhi! He is the last person in the world I would like to be. I would rather go to hell than be Mahatma Gandhi.’ So it is better to let you know how he will react. I know him very deeply. He will not be able to tolerate this comparison, and he loves you. Just because of this name don’t destroy your lover.”
I said to Masto, “This is too much, Masto. You need not have said that to him. He is old, and as far as I am concerned, he has compared me to the greatest man in his way of thinking.”
Masto said, “Wait. When I said this, Jawaharlal said, ‘I had suspected, that’s why I waited, weighing whether to say it or not. Then don’t say it to him, change it. Perhaps he may become a Gautam Buddha!’”
Rabindranath, the great Indian poet, has written that Jawaharlal very secretly loved Gautam Buddha. Why secretly? Because he never liked any organized religion, and he did not believe in God either, and Jawaharlal was the prime minister of India.
Masto said, “I then said to Jawaharlal, ‘Forgive me. You have come very close, but to tell you the truth he will not like any comparison.’ And do you know,” Masto then asked me, “what Jawaharlal said? He said ‘That is the kind of man I love and respect. But protect him by every possible means so that he does not get caught into politics, which destroyed me. I don’t want that same calamity to happen again, to him.’”
Masto disappeared after that. I also disappeared, so nobody is there to complain. But the memory is not consciousness, and memory can function even without consciousness, in fact more efficiently. After all, what is a computer? A memory system. The ego has died; that which is behind the ego is eternal. That which is part of the brain is temporal, and will die.
Even after death I will be available to my people as much, or as little, as I am now. It all depends on them. That’s why I am, by and by, disappearing from their world, so that it becomes more and more their thing.