Buddha was hesitant, very hesitant. Yes, he also thought of the few people who would be able to understand it, but then he could see that “Those people who will be able to understand my words will be able to find truth on their own because they cannot be ordinary people, they will be super-intelligent people, only then will they be able to understand what I am saying to them. If they can understand my words they will be able to find their own way, they will be able to reach the truth on their own, so why bother about them? Maybe it will take a little longer for them. So what? – because there is eternity, time is not short. But the message, once it gets into the wrong hands, will be corrupted forever.” Even to utter he was hesitant.
I can understand Ko Hsuan’s contemplating over the matter ten thousand times – whether to write it down or not – because when you say something to people, if they are stupid people, they are bound to forget it very soon. If they are mediocre people they will not bother even to listen; they won’t care. But once it is written down then they will read it, study it; then it will become part of their schools, colleges and universities, and stupid scholars will ponder over it and they will write great scholarly treatises on it. People who know nothing will be talking about it for centuries and the truth will be lost in all that noise that scholars make – they will argue for and against.
It is said that once a disciple of the devil came running to him and he said, “What are you doing sitting here under this tree? Have you not heard? – one man has found truth! We have to do something, and urgently, because if this man has found truth our very existence is in danger, our very profession is in danger. He can cut our very roots!”
The old devil laughed. He said, “Calm down, please. You are new, that’s why you are so disturbed by it. Don’t be worried. I have got my people, they have already started working.”
The disciple asked, “But I have not seen any of our people there.”
The devil said, “I work in many ways. Scholars are there, pundits are there, philosophers are there, theologians are there. Don’t be worried. They will make so much noise for and against, they will create so much argumentation that the still small voice of truth will be silenced by them. We need not worry. These scholars and pundits and these professors are my people: I work through them – they are in my service, they are my secret agents. Don’t be worried. You may not have seen my well-known disciples there because I cannot go directly, I have to go in disguise. And I have arrived there and my people have started working – they have surrounded the person. He cannot do any harm. And soon he will be dead – he is old – and then my people will be his apostles, his priests, and they will manage the whole affair.”
Priests are in the service of the devil, not in the service of God. The so-called great scholars who go on and on with logic-chopping, hair-splitting arguments are in the service of the devil, not in the service of God.
Once you write down something you are giving a chance to these people; they will jump upon the opportunity, they won’t miss the opportunity. They will mess the whole thing up, they will create great confusion around it. That is their expertise.