The first question:
Why are so many people against you?
It is natural. It is not strange. If they were not against me it would be absolutely strange. They have been against people like me forever. They have to be, it is inevitable.
Whatsoever I am doing here is very shattering to their minds. It is cutting their very roots. It is offending them in many ways. It is shocking. It is scandalous. They react, they react just to defend themselves. And the greatest thing that offends them is something that has to be understood.
When Buddha declared that he was enlightened, people were very offended. They could believe that people had been enlightened in the past, but they could not believe that a contemporary, a man just like them, could be enlightened. They could believe that in future there would be enlightened people – but in the present? A contemporary? It hurts the ego that somebody has become enlightened: “Then what have I been doing here?” It can’t be accepted.
And these were the same people who had been reading the Upanishads, reading again and again the great declaration of the seers: aham brahmasmi – I am God! If Buddha had simply commented on it, if he had simply said that God is hidden in everybody, God is unmanifest in everybody, they would have loved him. But instead of commenting on it, he became a witness to it. He declared, “I am God! I have attained, I have arrived! I have fulfilled the promise of the seers.” That was very offensive.
The same happened with Jesus. What was his crime? Why was he crucified? – for a very simple reason: he declared, “I have come. I am the one for whom you have been waiting.” People were very happy waiting for him, but you should not come, you should leave them alone. They could go on waiting for you for eternity, but when you come, you destroy many things. First, you destroy their hope. Now that you have come they can’t hope, they can’t wait for something: you have taken away their future. That was their only joy of living: that the Messiah would be coming that soon he would come. They were thrilled with the future. Now suddenly the Messiah is here! And he said, “I have come…for whom you have been waiting!” They were offended. They didn’t like this idea; you are destroying their whole future, you are taking their hope away. Once this hope is gone they will be left simply in misery. They were hiding their misery behind this hope.
What was so outrageous in Jesus’ statements that he had to be crucified?