Now what sin is there in poor tea? And if there is any sin in tea, then all the Buddhists are committing sin every day, many times, because in Buddhism tea has been used for keeping yourself alert.
In meditation one tends to fall asleep. It is good before you meditate to take a good hot cup of tea. That will help you not to fall asleep.
So round the world for all the Buddhists, tea is a virtue, because it helps meditation. And anything that helps meditation cannot be sin.
Once it happened, a Christian Quaker leader was my guest. I had no idea about the small things that Quakers do or are against doing. So in the morning I asked him, “Would you like tea, coffee, or just milk?”
He looked in a way I could not believe; he was so shocked. He said, “Milk? Do you drink milk?”
I said, “Is there something wrong?”
He said, “There is. The Quakers don’t drink milk and don’t eat any milk product, because milk comes from animals’ bodies. It is just like blood. And moreover, the animal’s body has not created the milk for you to drink; it is for their own kids.
“So you are committing crime on two accounts. One, you are depriving the kids of their birthright; second, you are drinking something which comes from an animal’s body. It does not matter whether it is blood or meat or milk, it is a non-vegetarian thing. No Quaker will be ready even to touch milk.”
And in India, the Hindus think that milk is the only holy thing. If a man lives only on milk…
I knew a saint who lived his whole life just on milk. That was his only contribution to the world; otherwise, he was just an idiot. But he was respected by millions of people, for the simple reason that he lived only on milk.
Hindus cannot conceive that milk is sin; otherwise, what would have happened to that saint? He would have been the greatest sinner in the whole world. This whole life he has not eaten anything. He has not drunk anything – not even water, because milk has enough water, eighty to ninety percent water. The whole day he was taking milk.
The point is that in whatever crowd you happen to be, the crowd gives its mind to you. And slowly, slowly you completely forget that this is not your real self.
My sannyasins have to make a clear-cut distinction. The mind is part of society, not part of you. What is part of you is your awareness, your consciousness, your witnessing. Then you can be alone and immensely happy. In fact, you can be happy only when you are alone.
One who knows how to be ecstatic being alone can be alone in the crowd. Who is going to find out that inside you are completely centered in your witnessing, and you are not at all bothered by the mind?