Two disciples of Acharya Tulsi left the fold and exposed all the perversion, the sexual exploitation in the name of religion. Acharya Tulsi has more than seventeen hundred monks and double that number of nuns. It is a vast community of monks and nuns, and the exposures from these two – and since then others have joined – reveal all kinds of perverted practices, homosexuality, heterosexuality, and the nuns are being treated almost like prostitutes. The monks are either heterosexual, exploiting the nuns, or many of them are homosexual. And they all have taken the vow of celibacy!
Acharya Tulsi tried, through the government, to have the book banned. But the publisher was very insistent, and he was ready to go to the court against the government. Seeing the situation, that to be in the court would mean more exposures, more dirt, Acharya Tulsi stopped the action. The books have been released.
One of these monks, Satish Kumar, had come to me when he left Acharya Tulsi’s camp, thinking that I have been always against Acharya Tulsi and his whole philosophy. But I told him, “It does not matter, I will not exploit the situation, because to me it is not a question of Acharya Tulsi. That’s how for centuries we have been treating symptoms, and we never go deep to the roots.”
Acharya Tulsi is not at fault. Neither are his monks and nuns at fault. The fault is centuries old – as long as celibacy has been preached there has been sexual perversion.
I would like Acharya Tulsi to gather courage and come into the open, rather than trying to hide. It is not his fault, it is the fault of the society that imposes on their monks and nuns unnatural things like celibacy.
I will support Acharya Tulsi. I am always ready for any unpopular challenge! But he has to gather courage. Of course he will lose his respect, but it is better to lose your respect than to lose the truth.
All these monks – Jaina or Hindu, Christian or any other religion – have lived in deep hypocrisy down the ages, and they are afraid that if they say the truth they will lose their prestige. Nobody will respect their truth.
This is a strange society. Everybody talks about truth and respect for truth, but just try one truth, and immediately you will see how you are condemned and your truth is distorted.
But there are only two possibilities for Acharya Tulsi and his thousands of monks and nuns: either to remain in the ancient hypocrisy or to come out and declare clearly that “It is not our fault. It is the fault of the tradition, of the religion which has imposed on us something unnatural.” And whenever there is something unnatural, perversion is bound to happen.
But strangely enough, everybody is against Acharya Tulsi but nobody is against celibacy. And the fault is in the idea of celibacy, not in Acharya Tulsi or some other shankaracharya or the pope. It does not matter who the person is; the problem is whether in some way your society helps him to be unnatural, respects him if he becomes unnatural. Then you are distorting his very being. And to gain respect, people are ready; to be saints, people are ready. But from the back door once in a while you will see these same saints in situations you cannot conceive.