Jesus was walking through Jerusalem when he saw an angry crowd shouting and screaming at a woman. He came closer and heard the mob accusing the woman of adultery. Jesus strode to the front of the mob, held up his arms and said, “Let him who is without sin cast the first stone.”
The crowd fell silent, but one little old lady pushed to the front, picked up a huge rock, and hurled it at the sobbing woman. Jesus gently took the old lady by the arm and said quietly, “Mother, why do you always embarrass me?”
Jesus’ mother! She is a virtuous woman – so virtuous that she has given birth to Jesus without any contact with another human being. She stands alone in the whole of history with the claim – even after the birth of the son, of being the Virgin Mary. That idea must have got into the old woman’s mind too much. Her virtue, her piousness – God has chosen her to be the mother of His only begotten son – has become a subtle ego in her. The others were not pious. The moment Jesus said, “The first stone has to be hurled by one who is virtuous,” the mob stopped. They were all in the same boat.
And you can see it in your saints…a strange but very subtle ego. Spirituality has become their achievement. Somebody has all the riches of the world, somebody is the most beautiful person, somebody is the strongest, and somebody is the most pious. The question is not what it is by which the ego can get nourished – any idea can make you fall.
One has not to stop until he has reached the point when he is not: when there is no claimer, when one has moved the full circle and has come back to the world, just nobody. Perhaps people may not recognize him as a great saint…and this is my understanding, that the greatest of saints have remained unrecognized, because you understand only the language of the ego. You don’t understand the language of egolessness.
The greatest sage will appear to you just an ordinary man, nothing special, with no claim for any talent, for any possession, for any power, for any genius, for any knowledge – no claim at all. He has become absolutely a zero. But the zero is not negative, it is full of godliness, overflowing with godliness.
Though your emphasis has been for us, as individuals, to go within to save ourselves, I guess I am still naive enough to feel that our love, our dancing, our joy could still save this beautiful planet. Can you please say something about this?
The question is meaningful, but very complex to understand. You are asking, “Though your emphasis has been for us, as individuals, to go within to save ourselves, I guess I am still naive enough to feel that our love, our dancing, our joy, could still save this beautiful planet.”