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Full text of "Sri Sai Baba`S:Charters And Sayings"

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TWENTY-NINTH TALK           59l

the instinct is infallible.  So there are countries
where our horrors are not permitted. In Italy
anything like athat (^ould not happen because their
custom is different To lay a hand upon a person is
the one unforgivable sin, which means knives and
duels and things of that sort. So children are per-
fectly safe, which is much more than we can say In
our civilisation.

People do not realise these things. They say they
are the custom, but they are very bad customs. The
idea of beating a child and the idea of punishing a
criminal by law—these things have in them the
elements of revenge. They seem to say: (i You do-
such and such a thing, and I will make it very un-
comfortable for you." The idea has an element of
revenge. I know that they say punishment by law
is to prevent other people from doing the same.
Well, it doesn't, you know. It does not act in that
way. If you know anything of English history you
will be aware that a hundred years ago the punish-
ments of the EngHsh law 'were very severe, more
severe than they are now. For example, a person
could be hanged for stealing anything above the
value of one shilling and six pence. That was the
law in England and it was constantly carried into
effect. I remember having seen at the entrance of
Newgafe prison and in other places, a notice that
such and such a one was hanged for stealing a pair
of gloves, value two or three shillings. That was the