Naturally, lions don’t need shepherds – that is the problem. If people are really awakened to their bravery, then they don’t need any shepherd, they don’t need any savior, they don’t need any messiah. They are their own saviors; and that gives pride and dignity and beauty to human beings.
To call human beings sheep is so insulting, so humiliating that one wonders how people listened to all this. And even today millions of Christians around the world – and that is the greatest religion as far as numbers are concerned – think of themselves as the sheep of Jesus Christ. If somebody wants to be a shepherd, he has to reduce the whole of humanity into an ugly state, into cowards.
Whenever you are in difficulty, why do you start immediately praying to God? – although you know your prayers are never heard; there is nobody to hear them. It is possible, just by coincidence, you may think that your prayer has been heard.
A man used to come to me – he had no child, and he said to me, “I cannot believe in God unless I have a child. And I hope that if God wants a believer, he should give me a child.”
Now there is no need…even if there is a God, what is the use of having this fellow as a believer – to fulfill his demands?
A child was born to him, and he came to me with sweets and fruits. He was distributing them in the whole neighborhood. I said, “What has happened?”
He said, “God has heard me.”
I said to him, “Just wait a little. God cannot be so much concerned about you.” The universe is big, and this beautiful planet earth is such a small thing. Even our own sun is thousands of times bigger than this earth, and even this great sun that is our life is a very mediocre star in the universe. There are millions of times bigger stars than this sun. And scientists guess that there must be at least fifty thousand planets in the whole universe where life exists. And this poor fellow is thinking that God has heard his prayer!
I told him a story by Bertrand Russell. The Vatican pope dies. Obviously he knocks on the doors of heaven, because heaven and hell are just in front of each other. Hours of knocking…because the door is so big, he cannot see its end. He tries hard – it is so vast.
But finally a window opens in the door, and Saint Peter looks out. With great difficulty, he finds this pope standing there – just as you can find an ant standing on your door. It is very difficult to have a dialogue. The pope shouts. Saint Peter says, “Say it a little louder, because you are too small.”
He says, “You don’t understand. I am the representative of Jesus Christ; I am coming from the earth. I was the pope in the Vatican, and what kind of reception is this?”
And Saint Peter says to him, “We have never heard of any earth. You will have to give me the index number.”
The pope says, “Index number?”