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Who Is Responsible for Sexual Abuse of Children?

sexual abuse of children
6 min read

Osho,
You say that there is only one sin, and that is unawareness. I tried for years to look for the good in every situation, however painful it seemed, but I still have not come to understand how there is no wrong. To me, things like the abuse of a child – either physically or psychologically – and the rape of a woman are wrong. How can they be called good? Can you tell me anything to help my understanding of these things?

“I have said that awareness is the only virtue, and unawareness is the only sin. Now I am in a difficulty. Who has told you to look for good in everything? How did you translate my statement about awareness to mean that you have to see the good in everything? And you say you have tried long to see good in everything, but there are children abused psychologically, sexually; woman are raped – how can these things be good?

But you seem to be just stupid. Being aware means not to make any judgment. And all this time you have been making judgments about what is good and what is not good. Then you are bound to be confused. And awareness will not arise out of this discrimination.

Awareness simply means witnessing anything just like a mirror, giving no judgment about it. And as your awareness grows, things that looked sinful to you will look only pathological.

“People are sick. And they are sick as victims of thousands of years of teaching them what is good and what is not good.

“With awareness there is no decision about any act. Awareness simply sees it whether it is good or not; it has no criterion. But the first thing is to attain to awareness. And then the same things may not look the same.

For example, the rape of a woman is certainly ugly. But who is responsible for it? The society, the culture, the religion – they have been trying to keep men and women apart.

“Your biology knows nothing of it, and when you see a beautiful woman on a dark night, alone, your biology takes over your so-called morality and religion.

“But then too, it is not certain that raping the woman is certainly bad. Perhaps she was also waiting for it. Perhaps she was getting frustrated that nobody is raping her. There is a deep desire in every woman to be longed for, and the more drastically you long for her the more satisfied she feels. And rape is the ultimate in longing for a woman. You are ready to commit a crime just to have her. You may be imprisoned for years in a jail, you don’t care.

“In most of the cases you and the woman are both brought up by the same idiotic society. They have told the woman to remain away from men, they have given her a certain psychology to avoid men. Even if somebody is attractive to her, she has to say no.

“In all the languages the poets have been saying for centuries that when a woman says no she means yes. But this is not true in Rajneeshpuram.

Here when a woman says no she means no, and when she says yes she means yes. You are fortunate if she says no! But there is no confusion about the meanings of the words.

“No woman has been raped in four years’ time in the commune here – but a few swamis have been raped! This is something new that is happening. The swamis are in such a fear, and wherever they turn there is somebody ready to rape them! We are writing human history from the very beginning again.

“But you cannot decide these things superficially. All psychologists agree that a woman is raped because deep down she desires it. It gives her a great ego, that she is so beautiful, so lovable, that people are ready even to commit suicide – there are countries where for rape you will be sentenced for your whole life or you may be crucified; still the man wanted her. There is a great satisfaction – he risked his whole life!

“So don’t take things superficially. But an unaware man is bound to take things superficially. My emphasis is not to determine which act is wrong and which act is right. In one situation the same act may be wrong; in other situations, right.

“Just a few days ago, one sannyasin wrote me a letter saying, “Osho, You have created a trouble” – because I had said some time ago that many people, almost the majority of people in the world, men and women both, are untrained lovers. No training has been given to them. In fact everything has been kept from them, they have been kept ignorant.

“What does a virgin mean? Someone who has been kept absolutely ignorant.

“So I had said that the best way to introduce your children to love will be that, while you are making love, children should be playing around. Let them be there. And in fact it is one of the most significant things because every child sooner or later discovers what you are doing to his mother. First he thinks that this father seems to be a barbarian, doing pushups on the poor woman. He wants to kill this man, but the child is so small…so he represses the desire, and he is not even allowed to admit that he has seen it.

“And the child will never be able to forgive you, that you were secretive about things. You were not open, even with him. You talked about love, but love means many things: openness, honesty, sincerity. And about one of the most basic things in life you kept the child absolutely unaware.

Children are very intelligent, every child is born with a tremendous energy of intelligence. It is the society and the education and the religion-they start destroying his intelligence, so by the time he is a young man, he is just a fool. But the small children are very perceptive, you cannot deceive them.

“So I had said that it is perfectly good – because the child has to learn and it is better he learns from the very beginning.

“Now this woman wrote to me, “A problem has arisen: we allowed our child to be present while we were making love; now the child wants to make love to me. He says, ‘If father can do it, why can’t I do it?’ Now we cannot say that this is sin, because if it is sin, then why is his father doing it, and why is he being allowed to commit sin?

“In a really human society there will be no sexual abuse of children. Such abuse exists only because children are kept in the dark; and they are curious, very curious, “What is it all about?” Then they get caught in somebody’s net.

“But children are very understanding too. The mother, the father, both should make him understand, “This is your training to see how love is made. The time will come when you will be a young man and you will be making love – then don’t make the same mistakes that we have made.

“Make your lovemaking a deep understanding for the child. Make him also aware that he is not your age. Make the place of your lovemaking a temple, so that the child from the very beginning starts feeling love is something sacred. And if he knows everything about it nobody can abuse him.

Now the question arises: who is responsible for sexual abuse of the child? You are responsible.

“You are keeping your children in darkness, and they are feeling that there is something that is being kept secret. They become curious; the more you hide it, the more curious they are.

“If it is open and is made available so the child can understand it – yes, there will be a few problems, like the child wanting to make love to the mother. The mother can hug the child, the mother can help the child to understand: “Just look at my size and your size. Just grow up and you will find a beautiful woman, far more beautiful than me.”

“But every mother wants the child to feel that she is the greatest and the most beautiful woman in the world, not knowing that she is creating a tragedy for the child for his whole life because now he will be looking for her all around the world and he will not find her. No woman will come up to the standard of his mother. No woman is going to give him satisfaction.

“The same is true about small girls. They should be made absolutely aware – not just verbally in a classroom. That does not help, they become even more curious.

“Make it very honest. And when the experiment is happening every day in the house, where is the problem? Let your girl, your boy, be present. Let them see the beauty of it. Make the whole phenomenon as sacred as possible. And these children will always respect you because you were so honest with them, so sincere with them; you never kept anything secret from them.

“And any problems like this – boys asking to make love to their mother – can be explained to them, that they are not yet ripe. One day they will be ripe; for that day we are preparing them. And children are very receptive, very understanding.

There is sexual abuse of children because they are kept in darkness by their parents, by their teachers. Love is something like a sin which has to be done in darkness, and nobody is to know about it. You are doing something ugly.

“In your own mind it is something ugly, something that should not be done. You are not rejoicing in it.

“Rejoice! Make love a festive moment. And of course, your children have to take part in it. They can at least dance around you while you are making love, sing beautiful songs around you, play on their small guitars, drums. They can make it really festive!

“And they will understand that they are children and they are not of age, and soon they will get their own lovers. And if this experience has been part of their growing up, their love life will have a totally different flavor.

So in child abuse, the person who has abused the child is only a victim of a very neurotic society.”

Osho, From Death to Deathlessness, Talk #32 – Silence Is the Highest Music

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