And a commune of loving people should be forgiving too. Love knows no resentment. Love only knows how to give opportunities for transformation.
So please drop any ideas of the people who belonged to the group and have remained here. To be suspicious of them, or to keep away from them, is ugly on your part. They need more love to regain their dignity. They need more love to be transformed.
And always remember one thing very fundamental to my way of life: anything a person does is just a mere act. It does not qualify and color his whole being. Being is vast.
I will not punish even a murderer, because the murder happened in the past. Nobody has the right to destroy this man’s future, because in the future he may turn into a poet, a painter, a scientist, a musician, a dancer. One thing is certain: he has energy. He misused it. All that you have to do is treat him psychologically, to make it clear to him that something is wrong in his mind, to make him aware of how to drop it and how to change the direction of his energies. What is destructive can become creative.
I am against all punishment, particularly the death sentence. It is inhuman, resentful, revengeful, and without any consideration of the person – in his situation even you would have done the same. And past is past. Why distort the future of a person? Any individual is worthy of respect. Your respect will help him to change. Your trust will help him to change.
So the people who have remained here need more love, more respect, need to be more sheltered, protected, so they can drop their fear. And now we have a totally new regime. They will be working under it, and they can be of immense help, because they have worked for four years. We need a few experienced people. So anybody who is here, and anybody who wants to come back, is welcome.
This is not an ordinary society. You have to prove that it is extraordinary, that you are capable of trusting even those people who deceived you. That will make them feel ashamed, and that is the only way for their transformation.
And, whatever they did, once you accept them we will not need to find out and discover and investigate – they themselves will reveal all.
Trust creates such a space, and love gives such courage.
If a person can see, can say to the court, yes, he has murdered, and he is sorry for it, and he wants to be changed…. He does not know why he murdered. There must be something in his psychology which is wrong, which is destructive. But in the ordinary world outside he will be sentenced to death, or to remain in jail for his whole life, which is worse.