I have heard you say that the natural development of the human community is from the tribe to the family to the commune – as a result of the unstoppable demand for individual freedom. Japan, which still functions with strong family and perhaps even tribal ties, is behind the United States in this progression.
Japan is now overtaking the United States as the world’s leading economic power. The reason seems to be that the Japanese are able to work together better as a group. By contrast in areas that require individual brilliance the United States still excels.
When the United States destroyed Rajneeshpuram, the prototype of the commune, an environment which would provide the advantages of cooperative endeavor while satisfying the growth towards personal freedom, did they lose the chance of enjoying the best of both worlds? Has the United States lost the chance of moving ahead into the twenty-first century as the leading part of the world? Instead do North Americans face a future of social and economic malaise based on cultural disintegration that could have been so easily and so successfully guided by your vision?
Dr. Amrito, the question of humanity’s struggle for the freedom of the individual is very complicated. It does not start with the tribe. Thousands of years before tribes formed, there were small groups which cannot be called tribal. They had no commitment to each other nor were they families, because they were not born out of marriage or any kind of relationship.
Those groups really don’t have any name. They had gathered together because of fear. I am talking of the times when there was no fire even. Humanity was really Gandhian – not even a spinning wheel. The fear of darkness, because the night was dangerous, still carries its imprint in our unconscious.
Why do you become afraid in a dark night? This is your collective unconscious, still carrying the memory of days which have passed thousands of years before. Why do you become afraid when you are alone? Perhaps you have never thought about it in this perspective. Why do you want to be with someone?
Loneliness makes people sad. They do anything stupid just to avoid loneliness. They play chess knowing perfectly that everything is bogus. Neither the king is king nor the queen is queen. The queen is as valuable as the queen of England. But just look at chess players…so intent, pouring their whole consciousness…And it is not only chess, there are thousands of ways to avoid your loneliness. It comes from those days when to be lonely was really dangerous. Wild animals were all around, and every animal is stronger than man. The days I am talking about are called the days of the mammoths – animals which were ten times bigger than our elephants.
There is no problem. Why should you not feel afraid being alone? In the nights, you had to hide yourself in caves or climb the trees – and it was very natural to make a kind of Lions Club or Rotary Club. Those were only out of fear. They joined together and whoever was powerful, naturally became the leader.
And since that day the story continues.
Even today whoever is powerful is the leader. He himself is the law.
That’s what Napoleon used to say: “I am the law. Whatever I say becomes the law. No law is above me.” Certainly there are differences of physical strength, differences of intelligence. Since those days women have been tortured by men, just because their bodies are more delicate and are not muscular; more soft, more warm, more loving – but not strong enough to become wrestlers or boxers.
So the person who was the leader sorted out the most beautiful women. They were his property. And the remaining members of the Rotary Club were left with the leftovers. Basically, that has not changed at all; still the poor man gets the leftovers. The kings and the prime ministers and the presidents choose whatever is the best.