‘Beloved master, having had the adventure of looking through ancient scriptures of yours, I have noticed that for at least ten years you have kept on repeating this legend: ‘There are four times more female disciples than male disciples. The same was the case with Buddha, the same with me too.’ About Buddha I don’t know—I was not there—but about you, after documented and meticulous research, I am happy to inform you that you have fifty-two thousand, three hundred and eighty-seven female disciple and fifty-three thousand, nine hundred and forty-six male disciples. As the old Bob Dylan used to say: ‘The times they are a-changing’—fortunately! Would you please say something about this? A disciple does not live on legend only.’
Sarjano, you will have to do a little more meticulous research. Just look into those fifty-three thousand, nine hundred and forty-six male disciples… how many of them are really male? And then you will understand that my legend is still exactly true; it can’t be otherwise. Buddhas don’t lie! If facts don’t fit with the legend, the facts have to be changed!
To be male or to be female is more a question of psychology than of physiology. One may be a male physiologically and may not be a male psychologically, and vice versa. There are aggressive women—and unfortunately they are growing in the world—very aggressive women. The whole Women’s Liberation movement is rooted in these aggressive women’s minds. When a woman is aggressive she is not womanly.
Joan of Arc is not a woman and Jesus Christ is a woman. Joan of Arc psychologically is a man; basically her approach is that of aggression. Jesus Christ is not aggressive at all. He says: If somebody hits you on one cheek, turn the other. Give him the other cheek, too. That is psychological nonaggressiveness. Jesus says: Resist not evil. Even evil has not to be resisted! Nonresistance is the essence of feminine grace.
Remember that if a man is totally receptive, physically he remains a man but his interiority becomes more a womb. And only such men whose interiority becomes feminine are capable of receiving God. To be receptive, totally receptive, you will need to learn how to be a woman. Each seeker of truth has to learn to be a woman.
Science is male, religion is female. Science is an effort to conquer nature; religion is a let-go, dissolving oneself into nature. The woman knows how to melt, how to become one. And each seeker of truth has to know how to dissolve into nature, how to become one with nature, how to go with the flow, without resisting, without fighting.
And then you will see: the proportion will always be the same. Here also you will see that change happening. Many women have reported to me, complained that, ‘What is happening here to men? They are becoming more and more feminine!’ That is true—that is bound to happen. As you become more and more meditative, your energies become nonaggressive. Your violence disappears; love arises. You are no longer interested in dominating; instead, you become more and more intrigued with the art of surrendering. That’s what makes a feminine psychology.
To understand feminine psychology is to understand religious psychology. The effort has not yet been made, and whatsoever exists in the name of psychology is male psychology. That’s why they go on studying rats, and through rats they go on concluding about man. If you want to study the feminine psychology, then the best examples will be the mystics—the purest examples will be the mystics. Then you will have to learn about Basho, Rinzai, Buddha, Jesus, Lao Tzu. You will have to learn about these people, because only through their understanding will you be able to understand the peak, the highest crescendo of feminine expression. Because the woman has been dominated for centuries, religion has disappeared from the earth. If religion comes back, the woman will again gain respect.
And because the woman has been dominated, tortured and reduced to a nonentity, she has become ugly. Whenever your nature is not allowed to go according to its inner needs it turns sour, it becomes poisoned; it becomes crippled, paralyzed—it becomes perverted. The woman that you find in the world is not a true woman, because she has been corrupted for centuries. And when the woman is corrupted, man cannot remain natural either, because after all, the woman gives birth to the man. If she is not natural, her children will not be natural. If she is not natural—she is going to mother the child, male or female—those children naturally will be affected by the mother.
Woman certainly needs a great liberation, but what is happening in the name of liberation is stupid. It is imitation, it is not liberation.
Here there are many women who have been in the Liberation movement, and when for the first time they come here they are very aggressive. And I can understand their aggression: centuries and centuries of domination have made them violent. It is a simple revenge. They have become insane, and nobody is responsible except man. But slowly slowly, they soften, they become graceful; their aggressiveness disappears. They become, for the first time, feminine.
Real liberation will make the woman authentically a woman, not an imitation of man. Right now that’s what is happening: women are trying to be just like men. If men smoke cigarettes then the woman has to smoke cigarettes. If they wear pants then the woman has to wear pants. If they do a certain thing then the woman has to do that. She is just becoming a second-rate man. This is not liberation, this is a far deeper slavery—far deeper because the first slavery was imposed by men; this second slavery is deeper because it is created by the women themselves. And when somebody else imposes a slavery on you, you can rebel against it, but if you impose a slavery on yourself in the name of liberation, there is no possibility of rebellion ever.
I would like the woman to become really a woman, because much depends on her. She is far more important than man because she carries in her womb both the woman and the man, and she mothers both, the boy and the girl; she nourishes both. If she is poisoned then her milk is poisoned, then her ways of bringing up children are poisoned. If the woman is not free to be really a woman, man will never be free to be really a man either. The freedom of woman is a must for the freedom of man; it is more fundamental than man’s freedom.
And if the woman is a slave—as she has been for centuries—she will make a slave of man too, in very subtle ways; her ways are subtle. She will not fight with you directly; her fight will be indirect, it will be feminine. She will cry and weep. She will not hit you, she will hit herself, and through hitting herself, through crying and weeping, through using these Gandhian methods, she will dominate you. Even the strongest man becomes henpecked. A very thin, weak woman can dominate a very strong man simply by using Gandhian methods. Gandhi is not the inventor of those methods; they have been used for centuries by women. He simply rediscovered them and used them politically. The woman has been using them for centuries, but only in a family context.
The woman needs total freedom so that she can give freedom to man too. This is one of the fundamentals to be remembered: if you make somebody a slave you will be reduced to slavery ultimately, finally; you can’t remain free. If you want to remain free, give freedom to others; that’s the only way to be free.