Prayer is addressed to a fictitious God;
hence, it has no value in reality. Meditation is a totally different affair....
meditation leads you to your own reality.
Jesus did not meditate during the forty days and forty nights he spent in the
wilderness. If he could have meditated the shape of things in the world would
have been different. What he did in those forty days and forty nights was
prayer. Prayer to a god whom he knows not; no one knows whether he exists or
not. Millions of people have been praying and the sky remains utterly
indifferent; no answer, no response.
The whole ideology of Jesus and Christianity is based on fiction. It is a
religious fiction. The same is true about all the religions that are religions
There are two kinds of religions in the world: religions of prayer and
religions of meditation.
The religions of prayer are fictitious because they begin with a belief in a
God. Belief is not knowing, and belief cannot destroy your doubt. At the most
it can repress, it can cover up your doubt, but underneath the belief you are
always suspecting whether your belief is true or not. Doubt dies on its own
accord when you know something; then there is no question of doubt.
Belief carries doubt with it. And to make the belief system strong, prayer is
the method. First the God is bogus -- you create the God out of your fear, it
is a phobia, and then you start praying to that God, which is your own
The Bible says God created man in his own image. Just looking at this
statement, it does not need much intelligence to see the utter stupidity of it.
The humanity that you know, is this the image of God? -- all these jealousies,
all these miseries, all these despairs, anguish, anxieties, wars, murders,
rapes? The list is infinite. This is the image of God, this is his reflection
in the mirror? So firstly, the statement is very disrespectful and irreligious.
Secondly, it is untrue. The truth is that man created God in his own image. God
has not created man, it is man who has created God. That's why there are
hundreds of gods in the world -- because different people created different
kinds of god, according to their own idea. And the foolishness is they are
sitting before a mirror with folded hands praying to the reflection of their
own face and hoping that they are doing something religious, something
spiritual. They should be treated psychologically!
Prayer is addressed to a fictitious God; hence, it has no value in reality.
Meditation is a totally different affair.
Jesus had no idea of meditation.
The West, unfortunately, has missed the dimension of meditation, and it has
missed because of Judaism, Christianity, Islam -- which have dominated the
Western sphere and forced people to pray. In fact, there has been a
condemnation in the West -- particularly by the Western religious people -- of
meditation. To them meditation looks selfish because meditation does not need
God, meditation does not need any prayer. Meditation is simply sitting in deep
silence so that you can sink to your very center; it is sinking within
yourself. It has nothing to do with anybody else. So those who do not
understand can call it selfish. But meditation leads you to your own reality.
Prayer is only leading to your own reflection, which is futile -- talking to
your own reflection. It is not going to help you in any way. It may give you a
good ego -- "God really looks like me, he must have created man in his own
image." So the people of prayer are bound to become egoists, arrogant,
holier-than-thou -- that will be their attitude.
The meditator becomes humble. He does not feel holier-than-thou. As he reaches
to his center he becomes more peaceful, more blissful, more harmonious with
existence. He loses all problems, all questions. He knows. Now there is no
question of doubt.
The religions of prayer begin with belief. The religions of meditation don't
begin with belief but end in an absolute certain knowing. But the knowing has
to be differentiated from knowledge. They don't become knowledgeable. They
simply know that the whole existence is divine. Their knowing is innocent, not
knowledgeable. Their knowing makes them humble -- because they can see
everybody has the same center; we are different only on the periphery, but at
the center we are one. You can see many points.
The religions of prayer have been fighting, killing, burning people alive, in
the name of religion -- forcing people at the point of a gun or a sword to be
converted to their religion. The religions of meditation have not done anything
The prayer religions have been creating religious wars, crusades, jihads. Their
whole history is full of blood. They have not made man better, they have made
him worse. Religions of meditation have not had a single war. They have not
even tried to convert anybody, for the simple reason that there is no point.
The other person is as divine as they are, he is just asleep. And it is his
right to sleep as long as he wants; whenever he wants to wake up he will wake
Being awake themselves, the people of meditation have found tremendous
treasures of blissfulness, of ecstasy. They would like to share it, so they go
on sharing it but there is no question of conversion.
Jainism, Buddhism, Taoism -- these three religions are the religions of
meditation. Their history is simply clean, no bloodshed.
Judaism, Christianity, Islam are the religions of prayer. Their whole history
is full of blood and so ugly that to call it religious and to call these people
religious looks like a mockery.
Only one religion, Hinduism, is left. Hinduism is a totally strange phenomenon,
different from both the religions I have described. Hinduism is many religions
together, it is not one religion. So you cannot characterize Hinduism with
other religions which have a certain personality. Hinduism is a chaos. There
are hundreds of religions under the umbrella of Hinduism, different from each
For centuries, everybody was accepted; whatever he was doing and whatever he
wanted to do, it was his right. But now, slowly, slowly, in these two thousand
years, even Hindus have started thinking of themselves as one religion. But
they are in continuous difficulty because they have contradictory religions
within themselves. So nobody can say what Hinduism is; one sect will define it
in one way, another sect in another way, and the third sect in a third way. And
there are so many sects and all have equal value, so that Hinduism has no
definition. From godless people to people who believe in god, all are in the
fold -- under the same umbrella. But looking at it as a whole, not thinking
much of the inner contradictions, Hinduism will also be one of the religions of
prayer. It cannot be one of the religions of meditation.
There are a few sects in Hinduism which have meditated, but they are in a
minority. For example, yoga -- the founder of yoga, Patanjali, was really a
daring man. Five thousand years ago, in his yoga sutras, he says something
which even the contemporary man has not the guts to say. He says, "God is a
hypothesis. It is not a reality. If you enjoy prayer, then the hypothesis of
God is needed; otherwise to whom are you going to address it?"
People like Patanjali are also under the same umbrella. They should be taken
out. They belong really to Taoism, Jainism, Buddhism -- the religions of
Taoism, Buddhism, Jainism -- they don't believe in any god. They don't believe
in anything. They believe only in one thing -- and that, too, hypothetically.
You know you are. You feel you are. You cannot deny it because even your denial
will prove that you are. If you say, "I am not" that will be simply a proof
that you are, because who is denying? It is just as if you are in your house,
and somebody knocks on the door and you say, "I am not in the house. I have
gone out to the market. Come some other time." Do you think the man is going to
He will simply say, "This is hilarious. You are inside the house and you are
saying, `I have gone out to the market.' Open the doors." You cannot deny
yourself. This is the only fact in existence that is undeniable -- everything
else can be denied. It is possible that you may be all just a dream. It is
possible that I may be to you just a dream. It is not certain. But one thing
you cannot deny -- you can deny the dream, but you cannot deny the dreamer. You
can say that it was a dream, but you cannot say, "I was not." Even in a dream
your existence is absolutely necessary; otherwise, how will the dream happen?
So the only thing in the religions of meditation is "I am." And now the
question is to discover who I am.
Meditation is only a methodology to discover who I am. It is purely scientific.
Jesus was not doing meditation. He was praying, praying to the Jewish God --
who is not a very good or nice fellow. Of all the gods of the world, he is the
worst. And it is not that I am saying it, he himself says it. In Talmud he says
it: "Remember that I am not a nice God; I am terrible, I am very jealous, I am
revengeful. If you go against me, you will be thrown into hell. I am not your
uncle!" -- Because uncles are nice people, more than fathers. He makes it
clear, "You have to be afraid of me." And it is fear that will make you
fear has been the base of all the religions of prayer. The Talmud declaration
of God that "I am terrible" is just to help you to pray, not to go astray -- to
obey, not to be a rebel.
And Jesus was not a rebel, as many understand him to be. He was born a Jew, he
lived as a Jew, he died as a Jew. In fact, he had never heard the word
`Christian'. He had never known that he would be known to the world as Jesus
`Christ' is from the Greek, and he knew not even Hebrew. He used only his own
local language, Aramaic. He was uneducated. Hebrew was of the educated people,
scholarly people -- rabbis. He used only the local villagers' language,
In those forty days he was praying. And what can you pray for? Whenever you
pray you are always begging; prayer is, deep down, begging. On the one hand it
is begging for something, on the other hand it is impressing God that you are
great, you are the greatest of the great.
On the cross, Jesus was waiting just as everybody else was waiting, expecting
that some miracle was going to happen. Nothing happened. And after a few hours,
when nothing happened, he looked many times up into the sky, hoping that angels
would be coming with their harps, playing on the white clouds. Not even a white
cloud appeared. Finally he had a breakdown and he shouted at God, "Have you
Naturally a man who had lived his whole life fanatically with belief, who had
risked his life and was hanging on the cross -- and God is absolutely absent --
it is natural that he should ask "have you forsaken me?" A doubt has entered
into his mind. Doubt was always there, hidden behind a belief system.
If he had been a meditator, things would have been totally different. He would
not have declared that he was the only begotten son of God. He would not have
declared that he was the messiah the Jews had been awaiting for centuries. He
would not have declared that he had come to redeem humanity, that he was a
savior. These are impossible statements from a man of meditation.
A man of meditation knows there is no God. He knows there is godliness, a
quality but not a person; not like a flower but like a fragrance. And godliness
is all over, you just have to be alert and awakened at the center of your
being. There is no question of the only begotten son, and the meditator knows
that nobody can save you except yourself because nobody else can enter into
your center. That is your privilege and your privacy. You can be killed, but
nobody can touch your innermost being, for good or for bad.
A meditator cannot say, "I can save you," or "I can save the whole humanity,"
or "I am the savior." A meditator cannot say, "I am a messiah, a messenger"
because there is no God who is sending messiahs and messengers. A meditator can
do only one thing. He can make himself available to you with all his joy, with
all his grace, with all his dance, with all his beauty. He can remind you in a
certain way that the same reality lies asleep within you. He can only become a
pointer. He can show the finger pointing to the moon, he cannot take you to the
If Jesus had meditated, there would have been no crucifixion, and without
crucifixion the world would have been saved from Christianity. That's why I say
that he did not meditate and he has left the world in the hands of Christians
who have done every crime against humanity and who are still doing every crime
Meditation cannot be violent. Even to convince you is not possible for the
meditator. He can only communicate. He can only commune with you in a deep
friendship and love, "I have found something. Perhaps you can find it too. Just
look within." He can tell you how he has looked within himself and how he has
found the very source of life.
But he is not a prophet. He does not claim any specialty, he does not claim
that he is higher than you. He simply says he is as ordinary as you are, with
just a little difference -- that he has opened his eyes and you are still