That’s how the idea of renunciation arose: “Say no to your wife, your husband, your children. Say no to your family, say no to your society, say no to the world. Turn your back towards the world and escape into the Himalayas. Only then can you say yes to God.”
The cunning mind goes on deceiving even the so-called religious. Even the so-called saints and mahatmas are nothing but playthings in the hands of the ego. Ego is very subtle, very cunning; clever are its ways. Unless you are very intelligent you will not be able to get out of its clutches. You will get out from one point and it will catch hold of you from another point. You will throw it from the front door, it will come from the back door.
The so-called saint feels greatly satisfied as far as the ego is concerned: he is a saint, he is holy; “holier-than-thou” is written all over his face. You will not find greater egoists anywhere than you will find in the monasteries. The popes and the shankaracharyas, the priests, those who have renounced everything, naturally they feel great, egoistic. They have renounced the world – what have you done? They have renounced money, power, prestige. But all this renunciation is nothing but a very clever game of the mind.
The truly religious person is one who says yes to life because life is God’s, who says yes to the earth because the earth is part of heaven, who says yes to the body because the body is only a shelter for the soul. And a beautiful shelter it is, a beautiful home it is, a beautiful servant it is. The really religious person knows how to say yes to all. His yes brings transcendence, his yes brings egolessness, his yes brings a state of no-mind.
Look at it from another angle: if you say no, mind has immediately much to do. If you say no, you will have to find arguments to support your no. No means arguments, no means logic. The more you say no, the more you have to be argumentative. If you say yes, there is no need for any argument. Yes is a full stop; no is only a beginning of a logical process. The person who says no becomes more and more argumentative. The person who knows how to say yes to life, love, existence, becomes less and less argumentative.
And to be less and less argumentative is to be more harmonious; to be more and more argumentative is to be more and more quarrelsome, violent. Argument simply means your mind is in a discord; no argument means the mind has attained a deep harmony. And out of that deep harmony is good; out of inner discord is evil. You do bad because you are divided. Whenever you are undivided, good starts happening through you; not that you have to do it – it starts happening.
Buddha says: Be quick to do good.