He says: “If any man come to me and hate not his father, mother, wife, children, brothers and sisters, he cannot be my disciple.” A man who has always been talking about love…why does he talk about hate so suddenly? The word hate does not fit on the lips of Jesus. The man seems to be contradictory, paradoxical – but that is only an appearance. We have to go deeply. If Jesus says “hate” he must mean something. And he means….
First: man is born as part of the divine, as part of the totality, the whole. The child in the mother’s womb is not in the mother’s womb: the child is in the womb of the whole. The mother is nothing but a part of the whole. The mother is the nearest part of the whole, but the child exists in the divine, in the totality.
He does not know the mother; he simply exists. Then he is born, he is separated from the mother. But even while separate from the mother, he has not yet got an identity. He cannot say “I am.” Still the purity of “am-ness” continues.
Then, by and by, he will start loving the mother. The moment he starts loving the mother he will forget the wholeness of “am-ness,” the totality. Love of the mother will become oblivion of the total. Then he starts loving the father and he forgets the total completely. Then his brothers, sisters…. Then a family is created, a small family, and he has forgotten the great family of existence.
Unless his consciousness shifts again from the mother, from the father, from the brothers and sisters, and the whole gestalt changes…. Unless again he looks at the whole and the whole becomes the family; again he lives with the stars and the trees and the rivers and the ocean and the sands, he will not be able to follow Jesus and you will not be able to follow me – because what is the meaning of following Jesus? The only meaning is to shift the focus of consciousness.
If you have fallen in love with a family you have to go beyond that love, otherwise that very love, that very attachment, will not allow you to enter into the greater whole.
When he says “hate” he simply means “don’t love.” When he says “hate,” he uses a very strong word: to emphasize it, because love has made you part of a small family, so only hate can make you a part of the whole again. But by “hate” he does not mean hatred. By “hate” he simply means “annihilate the love, the attachment.”
In India we have been using the words asakti or rag – attachment, being colored by the attachment. Be nonattached, renounce. Renounce the small so that you can find the whole. And this is the beauty: that if you renounce the part, the small family, and attain to the great family, suddenly you will realize that the small family is there in the great – because where will it go? In the small family, the great family is not there; but in the great family, the small family is there.
When the whole earth becomes your home, your own home is included in it. But when your only home is your home, the whole earth is not included in it. When the whole sky becomes yours, the small sky that you used to think is yours is there.