Questioner: Given the recent events around the world, why is it that people choose to create excessive violence, thinking that this is a solution?
Sadhguru: Who decides how much is necessary and what is excess? I am not condoning violence, but if you look at it in terms of what has been happening in the recorded history of humankind, you will see that proportional to the population on the planet, there is least violence in the 21st century.
Even if you just look back at the 20th century with the two World Wars – unbelievable, senseless, limitless violencehappened. In Europe alone, from the 1930s to 1945, Mussolini, Hitler, and Stalin easily accounted for the death of close to 50 million people, executed in an organized way.
When you read about violence in the newspaper, when it happened to someone else, it is one thing. But when it happens to you, even if someone just pullsout one hair from your head, you consider it as excessive violence. The question is not what is needed and what is excessive – no one can judge that.
We have been trying to establish systems in the world where violence can be expressed verbally without pulling anyone’s hair or head. The democratic process is a constant war of words. Do not be offended by the words.If you take away the privilege of verbal war, it will translate into physical war.
If people do not have the capability to articulate their anger, dissatisfaction, and frustrations, they will use their hands. Until we bring humanity to a state of equanimity, we must train everyone in how to effectively tongue-lash each other. This is what a parliament is about – tongue-lashing each other limitlessly.
When you do not know what to say and the other person is going on saying whatever they want, you want to punch them. In order to not use your hands, you must have the capability to wag your tongue efficiently. It is not the best solution but an interim solution.
For the tools of violence that we have today, which are the outcome of our scientific and technological capabilities, the violence in the world is much less than ever before. Modern societies have learnt to tongue-lash each other in the parliaments and the debates, in the United Nations and everywhere else. Otherwise, these tools, which could destroy the world many times over, would probably be used.
The younger generation seems to be losing the ability to articulate their emotions. If you see some of the so-called comedy shows or some of the movies, particularly from the United States, there are young people trying to make a whole conversation with one four-letter word. From there, the next step is physical violence.
If you had 10,000 words to say it, your violence would find expression in words. Verbal violence is also violence, but at least it does not kill those who stand in front of you. They have an opportunity to get back at you – the violence goes on, but only in words. And tomorrow, you may be saying very lovely things to each other. You can say bad things to each other and possibly fix it. But once you raise your hand against someone, there is no fixing it.
I am not saying you must abuse each other. But if there is violence in you and you are articulate, you would speak, you would write, you would debate about it – you would not explode a bomb. You explode a bomb because you do not know how to make your point. With the recent Hyderabad bomb blast, they were just trying to make a statement.
They do not know how to make a verbal statement, so they make a violent statement: “Twenty people dead; over one hundred people injured.”They could have setup a car bomb or a truck bomb and killed2000 people, but they killed “only”20 – that is their argument. We should at least educate them to be able to make a strong enough verbal statement so that they do not have to plant a bicycle bomb and kill 20 people to make a statement.
Participant: They won’t listen.
Sadhguru: They won’t listen because they have chosen to have a concrete block for a brain. A concrete block is useful in certain places; not useful in certain other places. We want a stone column to be strong and immovable. We want the mind to be flexible. But all types of belief systems concretize the mind.
A concrete block for a brain gives you enormous confidence because you do not even get a headache; you are never confused about anything. Only if you are capable of thought, there could be confusion. If you transcend thought, there will be clarity. If you make yourself beneath thought, your brain will be a concrete block that you can ram into anyone and break their bones.
The moment you identify yourself with an ideology, a belief system, or any entity for that matter, slowly your brain is turning into a concrete block. Calcification is happening – that is why we call you “bone head.”
How efficiently this happens depends on the efficiency of the preacher or the teacher, or whoever works on you. If he is very efficient, you will be a solid block where nothing goes in; nothing goes out. You are hurtling yourself through the world, regardless of what happens to people around you. If the preachers or teachers have not worked upon you efficiently, you will be a little confused, wondering if this is okay or not okay.
Those who plant such bombs are not wondering, unfortunately – they are dead clear. In the larger interest of society, there will be no choice but to either have them dead or locked away – we have to take action. Whether that breeds more violence or not depends on how surgically and incisively we can do it.
Mopping up is not an easy thing. A group of terrorists hijacked airplanes and crashed them into the World Trade Centre. Now we all have to pull down everything including our pants every time we want to get into an airplane. We cannot help it because we cannot take a chance. One more act of terrorism may happen tomorrow. Because of a dozen people, billions of people have to go through the works everywhere, everyday.
This screening and security is a huge violence by itself upon everyone,but it has to be done. It has to be applied to everyone– even if you are a five-year-old child, we will still check you up. Someone may have put a bomb in the little bag the child is carrying –they are capable of anything.
People have become this way because they are identified with things that they are not. They have become identified with some religious belief, ideology, national identity, or whatever else. What is the solution for all this? The only solution is evolution. To hurry it up, we have to put them through a spiritual process. Something beyond physicality must be brought into their lives.
It is so important to bring something beyond physicality into people’s life because the physical means boundary; beyond the physical means no boundary. If someone wants to pull your hair, to shoot you, to bomb you, or do something else to you – all this is essentially a breaching of boundaries.
Wanting to breach someone else’s boundary or you feeling that someone is breaching your boundary both come from your strong identification with the physical. We are not conducting the physical as a tool. We are conducting it as if it were ourselves.
This is not going to change tomorrow morning. But tomorrow morning, we need the police a little more alert. If we as a society do not handle these things the way they need to be handled – with total dispassion, not angry with them, not hating them, simply doing what is needed – violence will spread across evenly to the whole humanity.
Now it is happening only to those who want to fly, but it is not far away that people will be checked before they get into a bus or a train. If a few cars explode tomorrow, it is not far away that every car will be stopped and checked. Every society has to constantly strive to keep violence down to whatever extent possible.
Above all, on another level, we must constantly strive to create human beings whose presence brings peace. When you meditate, you generate a certain level of friction-free existence within you. If there is no friction within you, the chances of you getting into friction with someone else will be minimized.
Keeping it at the minimum is the best we can do until one day,a possibility arises where we can enlighten the whole world. This is not going to happen in my lifetime. Even if a few hundred people blossom, it is fantastic because they will multiply it further. Our prospects are very good.
Appreciation usually does not come out of me because I am afraid it will lead to complacence. Even if you are on the right track – if you sit there for too long, you will get run over. If you are on a useless track, you could sleep there. If you are on the right track, you must move quickly in the right direction.