Religion - The Last Luxury
ARE YOU AGAINST ALL RELIGIONS? ISN'T RELIGION SOMETHING ESSENTIALLY NEEDED BY MAN?
Yes, I am against all the religions, because I am for religion.
The very fact that there are so many religions is enough to prove that something is basically wrong, that we have not been able to discover the truth about religion, because the truth can only be one - lies can be hundreds. Fictions, you can create as many as you like; it is your imagination. But the truth is not your imagination.
The truth is a revelation. It is already there.
You have not to invent it; you have to discover it.
I am against all the religions, because all these religions are not religions. If they were religions there would have been only one religion in the whole world. There is no possibility of there being even two religions, what to say about three hundred religions - it is absolutely absurd. It is strange that man continues to tolerate it. These are all fictions, created by different people, different societies, different geographies. They have nothing to do with religion as such, because religion is not geographical, is not historical. Religion is not racial, is not national. All these categories are irrelevant as far as religion is concerned.
Do you ever think of science in terms of nations, races, countries, historical periods, geography? If the water boils at a hundred degrees here, today, it has always been boiling at a hundred degrees everywhere, in the past, and it is going to boil at a hundred degrees in the future too. It will not make any difference whether the person who is boiling the water is a Jew or a Hindu or a Christian or a communist; whether he believes in God or does not believe in God; whether he is a sinner or a saint.
It won't make any difference at all; the water will boil at a hundred degrees all the same. That's a truth, and you need not create any fiction about it.
Religious experience is a truth. When you discover it, you will not find that it is Christian or Hindu or Mohammedan or Buddhist. It has nothing to do with all these words.
The moment you discover religious truth, all space, all time, become irrelevant. It is simply beyond time and space. It is immaterial. Five thousand years before, five thousand years afterwards, it is exactly the same. The universe remains authentically itself. It is not wearing phony masks that it goes on changing, so when one mask suits, it uses it; when another mask suits, it uses that. The universe has no masks, it is utterly naked. It is not like you; it has no personality. Truth has no personality.
You have not only personality, you have personalities, each one of you many personalities, because you need different faces in different situations with different people. When you are talking to your wife you need one personality: the personality of a husband. When you are talking to your girlfriend you talk differently; you are using the personality of a lover. When you are talking to the priest, you certainly behave in a different way.
And when you are talking to your servant, do you behave in the same way as you behave with the rabbi, with the pope, with the mahatma? No, when the servant passes through your room, you don't even take any notice that a person is passing by. The servant is not human. You don't say hello to him; he does not expect any hello from you. He comes and goes, does his work - he is a robot, he is paid for that. You go on reading your newspaper, you don't even give a single glance to the person. You don't ask him anything, not even "How are you?" No, that is not expected; you are the master.
But when you go to the office and stand before your boss, then the situation is just the reverse - now you are the servant. You are standing there and the boss goes on turning his file as if you are not standing there, as if there is nobody there. He may not be looking for anything in those files, he may be just turning those files to show you where you belong; there is no need for him to take any notice of you.
If you watch yourself, you will see in twenty-four hours how many times you go on changing your personality. And it becomes such an automatic process that you need not even make an effort to change it; the change becomes automatic. You see your wife coming - it automatically changes.
You see your boss coming - it automatically changes. It has been your routine for so long, that now....
You have to understand one thing about man: that man's mind has a robot part in it. When you learn something, you have to be alert. For example, if you are learning driving you have to be alert, watchful of so many things: the road, the people, the other vehicles passing. You have to be aware of your steering, you have to be aware of the brake, you have to be aware of the gears.
And in the beginning when somebody learns, he finds it very difficult to take care of so many things simultaneously. Once you have learned it, what happens? Then you can sing and drive, talk and drive, listen to the radio and drive. Your mind has taken "driving" to another section, and that section is the robot section of the mind. Now the robot takes care of everything that you were required to take care of in the beginning.
The same happens with your personalities. So you are not even aware that you change so quickly - no sound is made, no visible change - but if you watch, you will see everything has changed.
I was traveling in a train from Delhi to Amritsar. In my compartment there was a woman, young, very beautiful. And at each station, the man who was traveling with her - he could not get a seat in the coupe, because in the coupe only two people can sit, so he had to travel in another compartment, but at each station he would come running, sometimes bringing sweets, sometimes bringing fruits, sometimes bringing this, sometimes bringing that.
I asked the man, "Are you married to this woman?"
He said, "Yes. We have been married seven years."
I said, "Don't tell a lie to me. You have not been married even for seven days."
He looked shocked, but he said, "How did you find out?"
I said, "This is enough. No husband would come at every station with sweets, fruits, and inquiring, 'Do you need anything?' and hugging and kissing. No husband... and married for seven years?
Impossible! You are not married to her at all."
He said, "It is true. She is somebody else's wife. I am also married, and married for seven years, but that is to another woman. And with that woman - what you are saying, actually that's what I do.
Even if I can get a seat in the same compartment I don't. I travel in another compartment, finding any excuse. And once I leave her in her compartment, then only at the station on which we are going to get down do I come again, not in the middle." What he said was, "But how could you find out?"
I said, "There is nothing in it to find out, it is so simple. Even after seven days of marriage, this stupid behavior that you are persistently doing here at every station drops, simply disappears, because this behavior is foreplay, not afterplay."
He said, "What do you mean by foreplay and afterplay?"
I said, "Just exactly those words: fore-play.... Before you have got hold of the woman, this is foreplay; you are persuading her. And what you are doing with your wife is afterplay. Then you hope that somehow the compartment gets thrown into the river, falls off the rails: some miracle happens and you do not have to meet that woman again at the coming station where you are going to get down.
You think a thousand and one things, that 'Miracles after all happen. She can get lost. Somebody may steal her, or somebody may kill her; anything is possible in this big world, so many things happen every day.' But nothing happens. You find your wife there, you are standing there and you are again saying sweet nothings to her: 'How much I wished to be with you, how much I missed you, how much I remembered you continuously.' Yes, you remembered, but for different reasons!"
Existence has no personality. No question of personalities, it simply is whatsoever it is.
To experience existence as it is, is to know the truth.
The closest is to move from your own center, because that is where you are joined with existence.
Your hands can touch a flower; your eyes can see the colors of the clouds, sky, sunset. Your ears can hear the music of the birds, the sound of the running water or just the breeze passing through the trees; or in the fall, the leaves falling silently, but still whispering something....
But there is a gap between you and the cloud, between you and the falling leaves, between you and the stars. Howsoever close you come, there is still a gap. The very word closeness means two people, two things, not one. The gap is there, howsoever close. You come closest in a love affair with a person, perhaps for a few moments - I will not say for a few hours, a few days - perhaps for a few moments you come closest to a person, but still... there is a gap. You can shout, but your sound will not reach. You can stretch out your hands, but you cannot touch. The gap, howsoever small, is still big enough to keep you two separate entities.
You would like to become one, and that's the misery of all lovers and the reason why all love affairs fail. They are bound to because they are trying to do the impossible. It is nobody's fault. They come close... the moment of closeness is so beautiful that they would like to come even closer, but there comes a limit. Where is the limitation? The other is other, and there is no way that you two can become one.
Jean-Paul Sartre says, "The other is hell." This man is not a psychoanalyst, but it has happened often that painters, poets, novelists, dramatists, artists, have come to discover something which the so-called experts, who are supposed to discover it, go on and on and never find. Now, Freud never found out that the other is the hell - neither did Jung, nor Adler, nor the whole company that has followed them. Jean-Paul Sartre, in this small statement, says something so tremendously deep and profound, that it is a revelation - the other is hell. Why? - because you want to merge, melt, so that the two-ness disappears and you become one, unified... so that you can see out of the eyes of your beloved, and you can smell, and you can taste, and you can hear, not as a separate being, but as one with the person you love... so that both your centers jump into each other and become one center.
That is where Sartre's profound insight comes in. He said, "The other is hell." There is no way. The other remains the other, continues to remain the other. Whatsoever you do, everything fails. And it is not the fault of the other. The other is also trying to do everything possible, but you remain the other. Both are trying, but they are going to fail because what they are desiring is impossible. Their alonenesses are their very being.
No trespass is possible, you cannot trespass the being of another person. And it is good, because if people were able to trespass other people's beings, then there would be no hope for humanity.
Then there would be no hope for real freedom to exist, ever. ... Because why should only one person trespass? - many can trespass you. Once it is possible, then many people can trespass you. Your purity, your sanctity, your individuality, will lose all meaning.
Sartre is right. He has understood the point, that the other is going to remain the other, and the loving heart wants to become one with the beloved. It is going to fail. And that is the misery of lovers. Nobody knows misery more than lovers. Nobody knows suffering more than lovers.
So when he says the other is hell, he is saying many things. He is saying there is no other hell - only that one experience: when you come so close, where you feel just one step more and the paradise is yours, but that one step you cannot cross.
The goal is in front of you. You are standing at the door, but somehow you cannot even knock on the door. It is there, waiting, not only waiting, welcoming, but somehow you are paralyzed. There is some invisible circle around the other person which you cannot cross, and at that moment you will become aware that the same circle is around you. The circles, when they come close, touch each other, but only at the circumferences of the circles. More than that is not possible. To turn back from the doors of paradise is hell. There is no other hell.
The stubborn reality of the other, that it is going to remain other, becomes your failure, becomes the other person's failure too. And you cannot remain stuck at that point. Try to understand: in existence, in life, nothing remains static; either you go forward or you move away. Forward you cannot move - the invisible wall hits your head and there is no way - and nothing remains static, you start moving away... and the painful memory of failure, the painful memory of reaching so close and yet losing it....
The nearest you can come is in love, but love becomes anguish; ultimately love becomes anguish.
Hence, blessed are those who have never loved, because they will never know that the other is the hell. To protect you from this experience all societies have tried, in some way or other, to prevent love happening - marriage is good. And of course, living with somebody for years, you start having a certain companionship, a certain need for the other. The other becomes a habit.
If your wife goes away for a few days, you are at a loss. You wanted her to go for a few days at least, and when she goes then you are at a loss. You cannot find where your shoes are, you cannot find anything you want in your own house. Suddenly the wife is missed - and you think it is because of love? No, she had become a habit with you, she had taken every care in her hands; without her you are at a loss as to what to do. Even fighting with her had become a routine part of your life. Now there is nobody to fight in the house. You go from one room to another - even the fight is missed.
You come home late, nobody quarrels... you just go to your bed. And the quarrel every night has become such a routine part of you that you cannot fall asleep without it. It is just like a teddy bear.
I sleep with three pillows: one on each side and one under my head. While I was traveling in India I had to carry all three pillows, and I use very big pillows, perhaps the biggest size, so one very big suitcase was just for the three pillows. Whenever I used to stay with somebody, and he would open my suitcases and in one suitcase - and it was a big suitcase, the biggest suitcase available - only three pillows! He would say, "What! This big suitcase and you are carrying just three pillows...7"
I would say, "I cannot sleep without those two. Those two are absolutely part of my sleep. If somebody takes one of my pillows, then it is difficult for me to sleep. I will miss him the whole night."
The wife was wanting to go just for a rest for a few days. She is wiped out - I think that is the exact expression, wiped out - by all these children and this husband. A time comes when it is all too much. But when she goes on a holiday, she starts missing the kids, their noise, their fight. She starts missing the husband. Whom to nag? Nagging is such a power trip, and such a joy. And the poor fellow cannot do anything, the wife is so powerful. And she knows that outside this man is a lion; that gives more joy in nagging him, and proving him to be just a rat - nothing else. You may be a lion in the outside, but when you come home, then keep your tail down, and remember that here you are not a boss.
She starts missing... with whom to fight? She starts missing all the care she takes; now there is nobody to take care of. Small things start coming to her memory: in the morning she brings the newspaper to the husband.... She had never liked it; the very idea of the husband sitting in front of her, hidden behind the newspaper... she knows why he is reading the newspaper, just to avoid her, so she is not seen. But now, away from home, she starts thinking about whether somebody has given him his newspaper or not. And how is he going to find his shoes... and the clothes?
And he is bound to do something stupid in the kitchen. The house may catch on fire - anything is possible..."What have I done? Why have I come here? And there is nothing to enjoy...." All those dreams that she was having at home have all flown away. Now she is hankering just to be back as quickly as possible. They have become habits to each other.
This is not love. But all the societies have tried this simple formula to protect you from the experience - which is terrible in a way but which can also become a transformation. It never became a transformation for Jean-Paul Sartre. I feel sorry for the man. He had come very close when he said the other is the hell. But even in coming that close, to that insight, he is still missing something more significant. His emphasis is still as if the other is responsible for being a hell. No, the other is not responsible. He is not yet seeing the other part, the other half: that you are also the other, from the other side. Are you creating hell for the other person? You are not creating hell. Then be a little more understanding: the other is also not creating hell. Don't dump it on the other.
It is simply a natural phenomenon that you can come closest in the experience of love, but only closest. You cannot be welded into one being.
Your aloneness becomes for the first time crystal clear. No matter what, you are alone. And all the fiction that there may be somebody who is just made for you, there may be somebody who will fill this gap, this emptiness in you.... Nobody can do it; not because nobody wants to do it, no, everybody would love to do it, but it is just not possible in the very nature of things. And it is good, I repeat, that it is not possible in the very nature of things, because if it was possible then there would be no necessity for religion - no need of religion.
You ask me, "Is there any essential need of religion for man?" Yes, but it comes only after you have experienced that your aloneness is absolute.
You cannot deceive yourself by friendship, by love, by money, by power. You cannot go on deceiving yourself for long. A moment is going to come when you will see all your efforts have utterly failed:
you are still as alone as you have always been. This is the moment when religion comes in. Religion is nothing but a one hundred and eighty degree turn - from the other to yourself.
You have tried the other; it does not work. The other is not responsible. The other has not created the universal law. The other is as much part of this universal law as you are. If your understanding goes a little deeper... Sartre was just on the brink where he could have turned towards himself, but he stopped there: The other is hell. He condemned the other, but he didn't turn to give a try to himself.
You have given a try to many people in your life, reaching to the farthest person, trying to bring him close to you. You succeeded in bringing him very close, very close, and at the last moment, just one step more... and it has failed. The human mind says, "Perhaps this is not the right person.
Find another person. Go on finding another person." The mind goes on giving you hope: "If it has not happened with this woman, this man, it may happen with somebody else. Perhaps you were trying with the wrong person." The mind goes on finding consolations, excuses, explanations, rationalizations, but all those are futile. Those rationalizations, explanations, excuses, consolations, will keep you away from religion.
Sartre could have become one of the religious men, which is very rare: a very ordinary phenomenon, but very rare, because nobody tries the ordinary; everybody is after the extraordinary.
Religion is when love has failed.
I am for love. I have been teaching my whole life in favor of love. The reason is strange. But I am an eccentric man. I have been teaching you to go for love because I know that unless you come to this crucial point, where the other is hell, you will never become religious.
I am not for love. My whole effort is for religion.
The pseudo-religions just give you readymade formulas, and I want to give you the real experience, but I cannot give it to you. I can only show you the path, can explain to you how it happens, and then leave you free to experiment with it if you want.
If love has not failed, then you are not yet adult enough for religion. You are below age. Whatsoever your age it does not matter; it may be sixty, may be seventy, it does not matter. If you are still hoping that love can succeed, then you're yet under age. But if you have come to realize this totally, that it is against the nature of things, existence does not work that way.... You are you, the other is other.
If you want to taste the experience of existence, it is not via the other, it is a direct jump within yourself. It is via you, through you.
And only love and its failure can throw you inside. Nothing else can throw you inside, because everything else is far below love.
Money - you may have enough and you may be fed up with it, but that does not mean that you will move towards religion. There are so many other things. You may start thinking that money is useless, but money can give you power. It can make you the president of the country. Perhaps there is the thing that you are looking for. You can become the president of the country or a prime minister of a country. And life is short; much of it you have wasted in earning money and now you will waste it to get into power. And there is a ladder; rung by rung, you have to go up the ladder. And there is always a rung higher than you, signaling you: "Come up, here is the thing that you want."
When you reach that rung, there is another rung above you. Once in a while, some stubborn idiot succeeds in reaching the last rung, from where there is nowhere to go because there is no higher rung any more - the ladder has ended. But when you have made so much effort to reach it, can you admit to those who are struggling below you, "Don't bother. I have found nothing here. I have wasted my whole life and now I am standing on the ladder's highest rung, and all I can do is jump and commit suicide. There is nothing else here"? Now, that will mean you accept your stupidity. No, a man who has been working so hard to reach the top... and by the time he reaches, he is almost near his grave. Now it is better to go on, smiling - a Jimmy Carter smile.
I really feel sorry for Jimmy Carter. He is really a poor man. He had to come down from the topmost rung - back to earth. Now all the smile has disappeared. I have seen his photographs since he lost the election, continually looking at his photographs: not a single photograph of that big smile, which must have been the biggest in the whole world. What happened to that smile? That smile was phony. Even when he was on the last rung it was phony. But when you have been in the game of phoniness, in the game of politics, you become so accustomed to it that even seeing that by your side is just suicide....
The American people are very wise. They have assassinated twenty percent of their presidents.
That is great wisdom. They saved those twenty percent of presidents from the same situation in which Jimmy Carter is. If somebody had shot him while he was smiling, at least he could have had the last smile. Death anyway is going to come. Now it will come, but there will be no smile.
Anyone becoming a president of a country then tries to remain the president until he dies. Everybody wants to die as the president, as the prime minister - whatsoever is the highest post. Because he has devoted his whole life to growing this phony personality, now at least let him have the honor of death as a president of the country, or as a prime minister of a country. Yes, he deserves it; he has worked hard for it. And mostly it happens that either he is assassinated, or he dies of a heart attack.
India has had six prime ministers since independence. The first prime minister was Jawaharlal Nehru, the best politician amongst all the political leaders of the world, for the simple reason that he was not a politician. He was drawn to the freedom struggle of India, and had no idea of being in power. He was not meant to be a politician. He had such a sensitive soul that he could have been a great poet, painter, musician - anything, but not a politician.
I had several meetings with him. He was in absolute agreement with my ideas, but said to me with tears in his eyes, "Whatsoever you are saying can transform the whole future of India, but you don't have any idea of the collective mind of the masses. They cannot understand what you are saying; they will be against you. You cannot succeed in transforming their mind, you can only succeed in being crucified by them."
He was shocked by the Chinese invasion of India. He fell sick and could never recover from the shock. He died as the prime minister of India. He was a great preacher of peace, brotherhood, love, and he had created a third world bloc against the Soviet Union and America, so that these two camps are not the only camps in the world, there is another camp which is neutral. And he had succeeded in creating a third camp which is neutral. China was part of it, and China was the biggest part of it, the most important part of it, and China attacked India.
Now, on the Himalayan borders it is very difficult to fight the Chinese. Indians live not in the Himalayas but on the plains. This side of the Himalayas is Indian, the other side is Chinese. Now, millions of Chinese live on the other side, and they are accustomed to the Himalayan eternal snows.
They can fight. You cannot survive with them. In the Himalayas, if a fight goes on, nobody can defeat them.
Just as it used to happen with Germany.... In the first world war it happened; when Napoleon attacked Russia it happened; in the first world war when Germany attacked Russia it happened. In the second world war Hitler made the same mistake: he attacked Russia. It happened because Russia is vast, one sixth of the land mass of the whole earth, and for six to nine months it is covered with snow, so only for three months can you fight. The moment snow starts falling, then nobody can fight with the Russians. They are accustomed to it; their physiology for millions of years has been accustomed to it. It is their home. But for anybody else, it is death.
Napoleon was finished there. The first world war was finished there, and Adolf Hitler was finished there. In fact it was a challenge, that's why he attacked Russia. Because Napoleon had been defeated there and in the first world war Germany was defeated there, Adolf Hitler wanted to prove that Russia is not something unconquerable. But it was a purely natural thing. When the snow starts falling, then nobody can be victorious in Russia; then you cannot fight with the Russians.
The same is true about the Chinese. China has one fifth of the population of the world - the biggest of any country in the world. When China attacked India it took over thousands of miles in the Himalayas and India could not do anything. It was such a serious shock to Jawaharlal, who was always healthy before it, that he suddenly started shrinking, dying. As far as I understand, he died a psychological death. To be more accurate he committed a psychological suicide. He lost all hope for peace, for no war in the world, because China had been the closest friend to India. If you cannot trust your closest friend, whom are you going to trust? He simply lost all joy. Suddenly he became old.
The second prime minister was Lalbahadur Shastri. He was interested in me very much, and promised that although his party and colleagues did not agree with it, he would try his best to implement my ideas. But he died of a heart attack in the U.S.S.R. His secretary reported to me that all the way on the journey he was reading my book, Seeds of Revolutionary Thought. And the night he had the heart attack, another of my books, The Perfect Way, was in his hands.
The third prime minister of India has just been assassinated. She was the most courageous, and ready to do even things which go against the mass mind. I had suggested to her that she should throw people like Morarji Desai out of her cabinet. She said, "He is one of the most stubborn fanatics, and believes that he is always right...." He was the deputy prime minister, just second to Indira Gandhi, but she said she would try to throw him out, and she did it.
The fourth prime minister was Morarji Desai. Nobody thought him worth assassinating, so he is still living and now trying to become a holy sage - the same ego trip again. Charan Singh, the fifth prime minister, is not even worth mentioning. And Rajiv, we have yet to see whether he proves worthy of his grandfather and mother, or not. I have an inner certainty that he will not disappoint the country.
Jimmy Carter suddenly became ten years older the moment he lost the election; in one day, ten years simply passed. When people are in power, they can keep their face. It may be painted, but still they can look young, alive, strong; and in fact they are, because they have succeeded, although at the last point of success they find it is futile. But what is the point of saying it? - the whole world will laugh. It is better to keep silent about it and go on smiling. So you can move from money to power, or from power to money. There are many ways.
I have heard of one rich American man who became fed up with all the money he had earned...
and he had wasted his whole life. Somebody suggested, "Why don't you go to the East in search of some mahatma, some sage who can teach you how to be calm and quiet and blissful?" So he rushed to India, went to the Himalayas and asked who was the biggest saint - as if there are smaller saints and bigger saints.
But he was a man who knew money and knew that if you have little money you are a little man, if you have more money you are a bigger man, and if you have even more, you are the biggest. The same must be true in spirituality - how much have you got? He had lived with quantity his whole life. Money is quantity, spirituality is quality. They are not transferable. But in India also, people think in the same way as everywhere else. They said, "Yes, there is one, the biggest sage, the greatest mahatma who lives in the Himalayas, in the highest peaks, very difficult to reach. Many, in finding him, have died or were lost forever in the snows."
But the rich man said, "I have nothing to lose. I have seen all the pleasures of the world and there is nothing any more of interest to me. This challenge is exciting, that nobody has yet found him. I will try." Again the juice starts flowing, the same way as that day when he had started running after money - the same ego. "Nobody has found him; I will find him. You just describe to me the person's face and on what peak he lives, and I will go." They described him in detail, and he went.
It was really a torturous journey, but he knew how torturous it was when he was earning money. And if he could reach the top as far as money is concerned, he would manage this journey too. And he managed. Tattered, almost dying, finally he reached there and saw the man sitting on the top. He fell, not in gratitude, just tired. Otherwise Americans don't know how to fall at the feet when they meet the master - he had simply fallen. He was losing hope, he was almost on the verge of thinking, "It is hoping against hope."
At that moment that man, that old sage is there. The rich man falls, and just so that he does not die before he can manage to talk, he spreads his hands and takes the sage's feet in his hands and says, "You are a great sage and I have come from America, thousands of miles. But that was nothing.
This Himalayan pilgrimage, walking, on foot... but I am happy that I have reached. Now, please tell me what should I do."
The mahatma said, "First do me a favor. Have you got a cigarette - an American brand?"
The man was very shocked. But he had heard that the sages are strange people; perhaps there is some trick in it. He pulled out a cigarette and a lighter, and gave one to the sage and said, "Now, what do you say to me?"
The sage said, "Please go back the same way as you have come. But remember: if you come again, don't forget to bring cigarettes; they are so peaceful, so blissful. I really loved this one."
You can go from one stupidity to another stupidity, but if you fail in love... and failing in love means not what you ordinarily mean by it - that the beloved deceives you or that the lover deceives you.
No, that is not failure; in fact, that is avoiding the failure. If your beloved deceives you before the failure - my failure she has saved you, she has given you again hope. You will run after another woman.
By failure I mean when you reach to the point where you would like to merge with the other, and suddenly you find a universal law against the merger: bodies can meet, beings cannot. At that moment either you become sour and bitter about love - that's how all the religions have become, bitter and sour about love. But that is pseudo-religion. No, I don't see that you have to become sour and bitter. In fact, you should be ecstatic that you have found a very foundational law of life, that you have come to a point from where turning inwards is possible. There is nowhere to go. You can fall upon yourself. If that happens, then you will say, "The other is heaven, not hell." Then you will change that statement, because the other made it possible for you to fail in merging, melting, gave you the chance to turn towards yourself; you will be grateful for ever. Then the other is heaven.
Once you enter into your own being, you have entered the temple. This is what religion is all about.
This entry into oneself is the ultimate growth. You suddenly blossom. It is not a slow gradual growth, no. The word growth gives a wrong impression, as if slowly, slowly.... No, it is a sudden outburst.
One moment you were nothing; another moment, a quantum leap - you are all, because you have tasted your being and that being is exactly the same as the universal being. But that is the only door available. There is no other door. No church can help you, no synagogue can help you, no temple can help you. There is only one door which can help you, and that is within you.
Taking a jump into yourself, you have plunged into existence.
In that moment you feel a tremendous oneness with all.
Then you are no longer lonely, no longer alone, because there is nobody who is other than you.
There is only you expanded in all directions, in all possible manifestations. It is you flowering in the tree; it is you moving in a white cloud. It is you in the ocean, in the river. It is you in the animals, in the people. And it is not something that you have to project or think. That's what pseudo-religions have been doing. They tell you, "Think that you are one with all. Concentrate, discipline your mind to believe that you are one with all." Yes, if you try hard you may start believing it, that you are one with all, but that will be simply a belief.
One Sufi was brought to me; he had many followers. And many followers of his had come to me and told me, "When our master comes, we would like you to meet."
He used to come only once a year to that place, so I said, "Whenever he comes you bring him."
They said, "He is a realized man. He sees God everywhere."
I said, "I will not comment on it till I see him." The day came, he arrived. I told his disciples, "You bring him directly to me. Let him be my guest." They brought him directly from the station, and he was in an ecstatic fever; that's what you can call it. His eyes... his body was all not in an ordinary state - vibrant. Anybody could see it. And he would hug the trees.... I had a beautiful garden. Only I used to call it a garden, everybody else used to call it a jungle. It was really a jungle, because I don't like English gardens - well cut, symmetrical. No, I want something like a jungle, natural, where no symmetry exists.
He came inside the gate, and just by the side of the gate there was a beautiful maulshree tree. He hugged it. It was in blossom, and it is one of the most beautiful perfumes. He started crying in joy. I had to take him away from the tree. I said, "The tree is not that strong yet. You may kill the tree. You please come in the house, and if you want to hug the trees, I have many big trees; you can do as much hugging and wrestling and gymnastics and whatsoever, as you want to do. But this tree, don't torture it!"
Suddenly anger: "What!" he said, "Are you saying I am torturing the tree? I was loving it."
I said, "I know. Sometimes you can hug somebody lovingly. It used to happen to me when I was traveling in Punjab...."
Punjab must be the Oregon of India. Somehow all the idiots of the country have managed to live in Punjab. And it was so difficult for me to get from the railway platform to the car, because everybody was hugging, and out of love - and a Punjabi hug... you cannot imagine it: my whole body felt the ache, particularly my ribs. And I told my friends, "Please, these hugs - I am not ready to receive that much love. It is too much. You have to prevent it, otherwise I will stop coming to Punjab." These idiots don't know that "hug" does not mean that you crush the other person. And certainly they were doing it very lovingly, but you can kill very lovingly.
So I said to the Sufi, "Come into the house. Don't be angry. That tree is not strong enough, and that tree is very special; don't destroy it. I became enlightened under a maulshree tree, so my people have brought that tree from the original maulshree tree, as a seed. They have grown it, and it is still not strong enough for your hug. You come inside."
He came inside, and he started talking in the same way he must have been talking to his disciples:
"I see God everywhere, only God and nothing else."
I said, "If you see only God and nothing else, then to whom are you talking? If there is only God and nothing else then to whom are you talking and for what purpose? God must know it. Keep silent!" When all his disciples had gone I told him, "I know what has happened to you. You have been hypnotizing yourself for thirty years to feel that God is everywhere, and now it has become a continuity of a certain posthypnotic suggestion that you are carrying. And you are continuing it because you know perfectly well that if you stop talking about it, it will disappear within hours."
He said, "No, it cannot disappear. I see God everywhere."
I said, "Then for three days stop talking about God, and stop practicing anything. That 'God is everywhere' - don't repeat it; for three days forget about it. For thirty years you have done your work, now for three days let me show you what you have gained in thirty years."
And it didn't... it was not necessary even to take three days. Just the next morning he said to me, "What I had gained in thirty years, you have destroyed in one day. You are against religion - you are an enemy of religion!"
I said, "Of course I am an enemy of religion - the kind of religion that you have believed in. And I am against all this nonsense, because what is the meaning of thirty years practicing if it can be lost in one day? Then practicing even for three hundred years, it can be lost in three days! Or for three lives in maybe three months - but it can be destroyed. It is not your experience; it is just an imposed idea."
So I don't say that you have to start thinking in terms of everything being divine and that all is God.
That is rubbish. Never start from anything which is basically a belief. Just take a jump into yourself, and don't ask me what you will find there, because if I tell you what you will find there, you will immediately start hypnotizing yourself for it. Then you will find it, but it will not be the true thing. It will only be a hallucination.
Just take the jump within, and you will come to know. You will come to feel. You will come to experience.
Religion is experiencing the truth.
Man needs religion; it is the last luxury, the ultimate luxury. Below it is love. And I have been teaching about love so much so that you can come to that crucial moment where you feel the other is hell - because that is the point of turning. Sartre needed somebody to tell him, "The other is hell." What about you? You have tried so hard to become one with the other, why not try a little bit to be one with yourself? - because that is not going to be difficult. You are already one with yourself, you just have to look inwards. A little turning in, and the happening.
But then you are not a Christian, nor a Hindu, nor a Mohammedan, nor a Jew - you are simply religious.
I am for religion, for religiousness, and I am certainly against all religions, because they are all pseudo.