Rapists we all are || Acharya Prashant, with youth (2013)

Question: A girl was being raped. She was left alone for that. Thousands of people just gathered. They expressed their anger. We are living in a society that teaches the woman not to get raped, but not the man to not rape. People always raise questions on the ways the woman dresses up, talks and the kind of friends she has. Why everyone teaches the woman and not the man?

Acharya Prashant: You are narrating a very small part of the story. You are painting a picture where a girl is being raped and thousands are watching and she says, ‘why is it so?’ Why is the society such that, it teaches a girl to not to be raped but hardly seems to tell the man to not to rape. No, that is not really factual. This society is teaching both the man and the woman. It is teaching the man to rape and woman to get raped. It is teaching everybody. It is not only teaching the man, it is teaching the woman as well. And it is not only teaching the man to rape, but also teaching the woman to rape.

What do you think? Are women not rapists?

Do you understand rape?

What is rape?

Whenever you approach anything in any state other than Love, it is called rape. A rape is not limited to sexual intercourse. Look at the way you handle your registers, that is rape. These sounds that you are hearing all round, these are rapes. Rape is a much wider thing.

Rape is a state of mind.

When you are raping a woman, you are consuming her, right? You are looking at her just as a body, as a material to be consumed, right?

Anything that you look at just as a body, or as a material to be consumed is rape.

And women are raping. They are raping very much. Look at the way people spread dirt around. Is that not rape? Are you not raping the earth? Look at the way we consume our rivers. Are we not raping them? Who told you that rape is merely a sexual activity? Rape is a state of mind. A mind that cannot love will only rape. And we all rape. Please do not think that rape is limited to a few men. No! This entire society rapes. Is there anything that you do not rape?

So, let us not be particularly sad when a man rapes a woman because we are anyway raping everything and everybody all the time. Men are raping and women are raping. And this society has only taught us rape. We are all rapists. And we do not exempt anybody. We rape small animals. We rape our own children. We rape our clothes. We rape the classroom. We rape the pen that we are holding in our hands. We have not spared anything. We are raping all the time. But we do not see that the entire thing is all pervasive. We are bothered only when the act becomes very sexual and very explicit, then our morality suddenly wakes up. Then we say that something bad has happened. But that is happening all the time. You are blind if you cannot see it. It is happening all the time but you do not object.

Look at what is happening in your movies all the time. You will not object when all those gross themes and songs are there in your movies. You will not object. In fact, you will purchase Rs. 500 ticket to watch the same movie, right? And because you are paying money to the producer of that movie, he will produce more such movies that are full of rape. And then, when people watch those movies and go ahead and rape, who is responsible? Who paid that producer to make that movie? You paid him. Don’t you watch all these movies that contain all these raunchy numbers? Explicitly sexual! Do you not watch them? Have you not paid money to watch them? Then who is responsible if a woman gets raped? Why do you say that just four people must be hanged? Everybody must be hanged. We all are responsible. It is just that four people did the act, but behind those four people is the entire society. If you want to hang, hang the entire society and that entire society includes women as well. Hang the women as well, they are equally responsible. Are they not raping? Why do you say that women are the victims? Women are as much perpetrator of the crime as are men. This entire society!

We rape our own bodies. Don’t you see that? When we use our bodies just as material, that is rape. Don’t we look at our bodies just as material things to be displayed, exhibited? Don’t we do that? And that includes both, men and women. When you say that my eyes are objects that must attract other people, my hair, my entire body is something that must attract other people, then you have raped your own body because you have reduced your own body to just an object.

Whatever is objectified is raped.

And don’t think that you can reduce rape by making some laws, or by hanging a few people. Till the mind of the individual does not change, rape will not stop.

Rape does not start in the body; rape starts in the mind.

The Body only expresses rape.

Don’t you see that?

And it is a collective mind; it is a social mind that rapes. That mind needs to be changed otherwise, your laws and policing won’t be of any help. Till the time you have these television serials, till the time you have a consumerist mindset, till the time you live only as a material being, till the time you are ambitious, greedy and full of fear, the raping mind will persist. But no, you will say that being ambitious is alright, but rape is bad. If being ambitious is alright, then it will inevitably result in rape.

You do not understand the origin of the whole thing. You just want to cut down the leaves of the tree. You do not understand where the roots are. And unless you understand the roots, just cutting the leaves, again and again, will be of no help. There are a thousand leaves, how many leaves will you cut? And even if you cut them, they will grow again because you are not prepared to look at the roots of the whole thing. This mind is the root. This mind, that looks at the world as something to be consumed. ‘I want to consume! I want to eat more and more. I want to satisfy my body’ – that is what is rape. What else do you do in a shopping mall? You consume and satisfy your body.

‘What will look good on me? What can I eat? What is nice to touch? What kind of smell do I like?’

Can this mind resist raping? It rapes!

And for god’s sake do not think that only that incident of rape is violent where a woman is being raped and thousand people are looking. Rape is happening every day, every time.

What do you think what is happening in all these married relationships? The husband is raping the wife all the time, and the wife is prepared to be raped. The wife is looking at the husband’s body as an object, and the husband is looking at the wife’s body as an object. And that is rape.

Is there real Love?

No, it is merely the rape. But then you will not call it rape because there is no FIR and because it is within the institution of marriage. So, you will not say that it is rape. It is rape! Whatever you see all around is nothing but rape. So do not be too disturbed when you come across a particularly bloody incident. This is not just one incident. It is happening all the time.

99% of the population of the world is just a product of rape.

A very wise man in the last century said, ‘We all are illegitimate children’. Because none of us are products of love. And whosoever has not been born out of love is actually an illegitimate child. Doesn’t matter whether the parents were married or not. So, he said that we all are illegitimate children because there is only rape. There is no love. The husband is raping the wife, the wife is raping the husband. Body to body.

Stop rape!

There is no better way to stop rape than to stop raping yourself.

See this thing very clearly, and take an oath that I will not rape. I will not rape anything or anyone around me. I will not use anybody. I will not objectify anything or anybody.

Everything is breathing. Even the stone is breathing. Even the stone is pulsating with life. Do not look even at the stone as if it is only an object, which is rape. Do not think that the river is just flowing water, which is rape. The river is a living entity, the River is alive and if you do not see that, you will end up raping the river. That’s what we have done to our rivers. We think that it is just flowing water.

What do you think? A tree is just the roots, stem and the leaves? No. A tree lives. Don’t rape it. How do you get your food? How you kill animals and eat them? Is that not rape? If rape is just a violation of body, are we not violating the bodies of animals all the time? A woman’s body is exposed and penetrated, and you call it rape. And what else are you doing to a chicken? Are you not cutting its body apart? Is that not rape? But then you have no issues in eating chicken. You do not realise what you are doing.

So, to begin with, stop raping.

Everything, every object, every person and everything that you can perceive is worthy of respect. It deserves your love. Treat it with love.

When you touch it, your touch must be sacred.

Do not touch it as if it is something to be eaten, to be consumed.

Touch only with love, and that is not rape.

Are you getting it?

Excerpted from a ‘Shabd-Yog’ session. Edited for clarity.