From Ignorance to Innocence 07

Seventh Discourse from the series of 30 discourses - From Ignorance to Innocence by Osho.
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Why have all the religions used repression as a basic strategy?
Religion has passed through many phases. The first phase of religion was magical; it has not died yet. The Red Indians in America are still living in the first phase of religion; in South Africa, among the aborigines of India, religion is a magic ritual of sacrifice to God. It is a kind of bribery so that he helps you, protects you. So whatsoever you think valuable in food, in clothes, ornaments, whatsoever you think valuable, you go on giving to God. Of course there is no God to receive it; the priest receives it – he is the mediator, he profits by it. And the strangest thing is that for at least ten thousand years this magical, ritualistic religion has kept man’s mind captured.
There are so many failures; ninety-nine percent are failures. For example, the rains are not coming at the right time. Then the magical religion will have a ritual sacrifice and will believe that God is happy now: the rains will come. Once in a while they do come – but they come also to those people who are not doing the ritual and praising God. They come even to the enemies of the people who have prayed to God. Those rains have nothing to do with their ritual, but it becomes proof that their ritual has succeeded.
Ninety-nine times the ritual fails; it is bound to fail because it has nothing to do with the weather. There is no scientific cause-and-effect relationship between the ritual, your fire ceremony, your mantras, and the clouds and the rain. The priest is certainly more cunning than the people he is exploiting; he knows perfectly well what is really happening.
Priests have never believed in God, remember. They cannot, but they pretend to believe more than anybody else. They have to, that is their profession. The stronger their faith, the more crowds they can attract, so they pretend. But I have never come across any priest who believes that there is a God. How can he believe? He goes on seeing every day that it is only rarely, by a coincidence, that sometimes the ritual succeeds. Ninety-nine times out of a hundred it fails. But he has explanations for the poor people: that your ritual was not done rightly, that while doing it you were not full of pure thoughts. Now, who is full of pure thoughts, and what is a pure thought?
It is very natural… For example, in a Jaina ritual people must be fasting. And while they are doing the ritual, they are thinking of food; that is an impure thought. Now, a hungry person thinking of food – I don’t see how it is impure. It is exactly the right thought. In fact, he is doing a wrong act at that moment doing the ritual; he should run to a restaurant!
But the priest has a very simple explanation why your ritual failed: “God never fails, he is always ready to protect you. He is the provider, the creator, the maintainer; he will never let you down. But you fail him while saying the prayer or doing the ritual: you are full of impure thoughts.” And the people know that the priest is right. They were thinking of food, or a beautiful woman had passed and the idea had arisen that she is beautiful, and the desire to get her… They threw away the thoughts but it was too late; it had already occurred.
So everybody knows that their thoughts are impure. Now, I don’t see that there is anything impure. If a beautiful woman passes by a mirror, it will also reflect the beautiful woman. Is the mirror impure? Your mind is a mirror, it simply reflects. And your mind is conscious of everything that is happening around you. It comments, it is continuously making a commentary. If you watch, you will be surprised – you cannot find a better commentator.
The mind says the woman is beautiful, and if you feel a desire for beauty I don’t see that there is anything wrong in it. If you feel a desire for ugliness, then something is wrong, then you are sick. Beauty has to be appreciated. When you see a beautiful painting, you would like to possess it. When you see anything beautiful, just by the side of it the idea comes as a shadow: “If this beautiful thing could be mine…” Now, these are all natural thoughts.
But the priest will say, “The rains have not come because of your impure thoughts,” and you are absolutely indefensible. You know it; you are ashamed of yourself. God is always right. But when rains came, then too these thoughts were passing through your head; you were exactly the same person. If you were hungry, you were thinking of food; if you were thirsty, you were thinking of water.
These ideas were coming to you when the rains came; but then, nobody bothers about the bad thoughts. The priest starts praising you, your great austerity, your deep prayer: “God has heard you.” And your ego feels so satisfied that you don’t say, “But what about the impure thoughts?” Who wants to mention impure thoughts when you have succeeded and God has heard? But ninety-nine times nobody hears; the sky remains empty, no answer comes. But magical religion goes on and on.
Magical religion is the most primitive religion, but fragments of it remain in the second phase, there is not a very clear-cut demarcation. The second phase is the pseudo-religion: Hinduism, Christianity, Mohammedanism, Judaism, Jainism, Buddhism, Sikhism – and there are three hundred “isms” in all. These are pseudo-religions. They have come a little further than magical religion.
Magical religion is simply ritualistic. It is an effort to persuade God to help you. The enemy is going to invade the country; the rain is not coming, or too much rain has come and the rivers are flooded, your crops are being destroyed. So whenever you find these difficulties, you ask the help of God. But the magical religion is not a discipline for you. Hence magical religions are not repressive; they are not concerned yet with your transformation, your change.
The pseudo-religions shift the attention from God to you. God remains in the center, but fades far away. For the magical-religious person God is very close by; the person can talk to him, he can persuade him. Pseudo-religions still carry the idea of God, but now God is far away – far, far away. Now the only way to reach him is not through rituals but through a significant change in your lifestyle. They start molding and changing you.
The magical religions leave people as they are, so the people who believe in magical religions are more natural, less phony, but more primitive, more unsophisticated, more uncultured. The people who belong to pseudo-religions are more sophisticated, more cultured, more educated. Religion to them is not just ritual; it is their whole life’s philosophy.
Your question comes here, at the second phase of religion. You ask why all the religions have used repression as a basic strategy, for what? The phenomenon of repression is tremendously significant to understand, because all the religions differ in every other way from each other, they are against all other religions in every other aspect.
No two religions agree on anything – except repression. So repression seems to be the greatest tool in their hands. What are they doing with it? Repression is the mechanism of enslaving man, of putting humanity into psychological and spiritual slavery.
Long before Sigmund Freud discovered the phenomenon of repression, religions had already used it for five thousand years – and successfully. The methodology is simple, the methodology is to turn you against yourself – but it does miracles. Once you are turned against yourself, many things are bound to happen.
First, you will be weakened. You will never be the same strong person you were before. Before, you were one; now you are not only two but many. Before, you were a single whole entity, now you are a crowd. Your father’s voice is speaking in you from one fragment, your mother’s voice is speaking from another fragment; and within you they are still fighting with each other – although they may both no longer be in the world. All your teachers have their compartments in you, and all the priests you came across, all the monks, all the do-gooders, moralists have all made places in you, strongholds of their own.
Whomsoever you have been impressed with has become a fragment in you. Now you are many people – dead, alive, fictitious – from the books that you have read, from the holy books, which are just religious fiction, like science fiction. If you look inside yourself, you will find yourself lost in such a big crowd. You cannot recognize who you are among this whole crowd. Which is your original face? They all pretend to be you, they all have faces like you, they speak the language like you, and they are all quarrelsome with each other. You become a battlefield.
The strength of the single individual is lost. Your house is divided against itself, you cannot do anything with wholeness: some parts within you will be against it, some parts will be for it, and some parts will be absolutely indifferent. If you do it, the parts which were against will go on telling you that you have done wrong; they will make you feel guilty. The parts that remain indifferent will pretend to be holy, telling you that you are just third-rate to listen to these people who don’t understand.
So whether you do something or you don’t do something, in any case you are condemned. You are always in a dilemma. Wherever you move you will be defeated and major portions of your being will always be against you. You will always be doing things with minority support. That certainly means the majority is going to take revenge – and it will take revenge. It will tell you, “If you had not done this you could have done that. If you had not chosen this, you could have chosen that. But you are a fool; you won’t listen. Now suffer, now repent.” But the problem is you cannot do anything with wholeness, so that there is nobody later on to condemn you, to tell you that you are stupid, unintelligent.
So the first thing: the pseudo-religions have destroyed the integrity, the wholeness, the strength of man. That is very necessary if you want to enslave people – strong people cannot be enslaved. And this is a very subtle slavery, psychological and spiritual. You don’t need handcuffs and chains and prison cells, no; the pseudo-religions have created much improved arrangements. And they start working from the moment you are born; they don’t miss a single moment.
In Hinduism, the brahmin gets hold of the child the moment it is born, and the first thing he does is make a birth chart; and he will follow the child during the whole of its life. On every important occasion he is there to guide: about marriage he will decide, in death he will decide. After death he will be the first to be the guest of the family – because in Hinduism, after a death, on the third day there is a feast. So all the brahmins and all the relatives and all the friends come to the feast, just to give solace to the soul of the departed. The priest gets your neck in his hands, and he does not let go even when you are dead.

In Hinduism, every year after a death there is a certain festival and ceremony when you pray for the dead: your father, your forefathers, all the people that you represent in some way: the whole long line of generations. In very orthodox Hindu homes you will find a family tree, a map of the generations.
One used to be in my family but I burned it. My father was very angry. I said, “You burn these people completely and nobody is angry, and I have burned just the map. And what is the point of keeping it hanging on the wall?”
“But,” he asked, “how were they troubling you?”
I said, “They were troubling me – just to think of all these dead people every day. I have to pass through this room two or three times a day and this whole tree – generations!”
Now there was nothing else he could do so he started to write down again whatsoever he remembered. When he came to Pune to live with me he said, “I don’t remember much – you destroyed the whole tree – I just remember my father’s father and his father, just four generations back.”
I said, “That is enough, even that is not needed. What are we going to do with these people and their names? And if you want I can make the tree and put any names – it will be just as valid.”
But he was begging me, “Please don’t destroy this paper – at least there are four generations. You are the fifth generation, and then my brothers are there, and their children and their children; my sisters are there and their children.” He was making the tree again.
I said, “You are unnecessarily wasting your time because once I get hold of this, I am going to burn it. What is the point of it all?”

But the brahmins use it. If you go to Allahabad or Benares, there are brahmin families, and you can go to the same family that your father had gone to. They have written in their books that your father went there on such and such a date, and he gave so much donation, and he did such and such ritual, and that your father’s father went there. They have generations of it, because for generations people have been going there from your family. And now you sign your name and become part of it. They will show you records of thousands of years, because their family has always been doing that work. And you feel really thrilled to know that so many people from your family have gone there – you are not the only one.
The whole stream of your forefathers has been going, and this family of brahmins has been serving them as their priest. And they have written down and exaggerated everything – because that is how they are going to exploit you: your father’s father gave a ten-thousand-rupee donation – that donation goes to their family – and his father had given twenty thousand. Now, you don’t have any records, you don’t have any idea, and you feel very poor if you don’t give. At least you should be able to give ten thousand; your father’s father gave it, and it looks shameful if you cannot even uphold the name of the family. But whatsoever you give, don’t be worried; it will be written in thousands for your children – because they will be going there too.
From these people you can get your whole family tree. It was difficult for my father to get it, because Jainas don’t go to brahmins in Allahabad or Benares. For certain rituals, as when your father dies, you have to go just to take his ashes to the Ganges. And you go to the family that has been doing this work for generations, which for thousands of years has taken care of the ashes of everybody who has preceded you. That family will take care of you, will take you in a boat on the Ganges and in the middle of the Ganges they will do the whole ritual; there they will drown the ashes.
But because Jainas don’t believe in the Ganges and this type of ritual, my father was at a loss; he could not find a way. Jainas have to make their tree themselves or go to the brahmin, because they have to depend on brahmins for certain things. Although Jainism is a religion in revolt against Hinduism and is basically against Brahminism, finally they had to make the compromise, because there were a thousand and one things they could not figure out without the brahmins.
Now, who is going to make the birth chart? Jainas had no idea of astronomy, astrology, palmistry, so they finally had to negotiate. In marriage, who is going to do the rituals? The brahmin does it. And the mantras have to be recited; the brahmin has to do it. In death, who is going to recite the mantras when the fire is burning the body? The brahmin has to do it.
So finally the whole rebellion disappeared, and Jainism became just a sub-caste, a sub-religion, a branch of Hinduism – but philosophically they are enemies. Deep down, Jainas think that they are higher and they are simply hiring these brahmins for certain works as they hire other servants. Brahmins think that they are higher: “Because without us you cannot even be born, you cannot die.”
These pseudo-religions have created a chaos in you – that is very necessary.
I have heard:

One politician, one advocate, and one priest – three old friends – all had passed their seventieth year, but they used to go every morning for a walk and sit on a bench in the park and gossip about things which only they knew: the good old days. And many times arguments and discussions would start. One morning they started discussing whose profession was the first.
The advocate said, “There is no problem about it, my profession was the first profession in the world, because people were fighting and somebody was needed to mediate, to negotiate, to do justice, to be fair to both parties. So of course my profession came first.”
The priest said, “But do you know who started the fight? Without the priest, why would they be fighting? It is the priest who gives the basic ideas and creates antagonism in people’s minds. And once they get attached, infatuated with an idea, then they are ready to fight; otherwise why should they fight?”
The politician laughed, he said, “You both are right in a way, but you are not aware of the real situation. Why in the first place did people accept your ideas, your philosophies, theologies? – because of us. We created the will-to-power. Of course, the right idea is going to succeed, but we created the whole idea of success, power, of reaching somewhere, of attaining something, being victorious.”

Only when there is a will-to-power do you start getting interested in the “right” kind of philosophy, the “right” kind of theology, the “right” kind of religion, so that you can reach the goal. And there are always many others who are saying, “We are right – where are you going?” All the religions are saying, “Except us, everybody is wrong.”
The pseudo-religions disturbed man, his inner integrity. They disturbed the society by creating so many fictitious ideologies. You will be surprised if you look into their ideologies and their theologies. You will laugh: “How was it possible that great thinkers were concerned about these things?” In the Middle Ages people like Thomas Aquinas, a great theologian – perhaps the most important theologian among Christian theologians – was much too concerned about the problem of how many angels can stand on the point of a needle. Angels don’t have weight and they do not have physical bodies, but still there must be a limit – how many can stand there?
Thomas Aquinas wasted many pages discussing how many angels can manage to stand there – and he was not alone. The whole Middle Ages remained concerned about the question. It was a great religious problem, of great urgency. I don’t know what urgency there could have been. Perhaps they were thinking that after they die, they would become angels and they would have to stand on the point of a pin or the point of a needle. What was the trouble? But that is the situation with all the theologies.
Mahavira believed in seven hells and seven heavens. He was old by the time Gautam Buddha started moving around, teaching and impressing people. They had all heard Mahavira, and they would ask Buddha, “Mahavira says so, what do you say?” Somebody asked, “Mahavira says there are seven hells and seven heavens. What do you say?”
Buddha said, “He knows nothing. There are seventy-seven hells and seventy-seven heavens.” Now, there is nothing to prove and nothing to disprove it. It is up to you whom you want to believe.
The same question was asked of Ajit Keshkambal, who was even younger than Buddha and was just entering the field of controversy. He said, “These people are perfectly right. Up to the seventh, Mahavira is right; up to the seventy-seventh Buddha is right, but there are really seven hundred and seventy-seven hells and seven hundred and seventy-seven heavens – because I have explored them all. Those poor people – about whatsoever they have explored they are not wrong, but if they insist that this is the end and that they have come to the very end, then they are wrong. If they say, ‘This is the point up to where we have reached,’ there is no problem.”
Now Ajit Keshkambal was really a man with a tremendous sense of humor; he was just joking. But what was Buddha doing? He was very serious; but to me that too seems to be a joke. What was Mahavira doing? He was even more serious, but to be serious about such things… You cannot give any proof, but you can create conflict in people. Now a few became Jainas, a few became Buddhists, and a few followed Ajit Keshkambal, but because he was a man with a great sense of humor, his religion disappeared; people wanted something serious and soon they realized that this man was not serious.
How can you believe a man who is not serious? And in fact my own understanding is that Ajit Keshkambal was more sincere than the other two. He was simply making this theological business a laughing matter. He was saying, “Get rid of all this nonsense! What business is it of yours to be bothered with?”
So the pseudo-religions created chaos in individuals, they created chaos in society, and they exploited both.
If there are Mohammedans, then Hindus remain united, then Christians remain united. It is just like Russia and America – nobody can stop making nuclear weapons, although both go on talking about peace. Nobody wants a Third World War because everybody understands that it is going to finish everybody. It will be an absolutely idiotic war, if it ever happens, because a war only has any meaning if somebody is going to win and somebody is going to be defeated. But in a Third World War nobody is going to be defeated and nobody is going to be the victor – all are going to be killed. There will not be anybody left to declare, to announce, “We are victorious.”
But still they both go on, continually pouring all their resources into nuclear weapons because of the fear that the other is doing it, so you have to do it. The other is also just like you, human – you are doing it, so the other has to do it. Now, where is this going to stop?
The same happened with religions. They have all helped each other unknowingly. Hindus became united against Mohammedans, Christians became united against Jews; Jews became united against Christians. And the whole world became a battlefield. Man became a battlefield inside, and the world became a battlefield outside. And the strategy used was repression.
How can repression do all these things and many more? Repression simply means: remember that your nature is your enemy – you have to fight it, you have to kill it, you have to destroy it, you have to go above it; then only are you holy.
Now, this is impossible. Nobody has ever been able to go above nature. Wherever you are, you are within nature. Yes, you can cripple yourself, you can cut your limbs to the size prescribed by your holy scripture, you can suffer, you can torture yourself as much as you want, but you cannot go beyond nature. Nature is all there is – there is no beyond. Beyond is within nature – not outside it.
So those who are fighting with nature never go beyond it. And their continual failure makes them miserable, makes them mentally unbalanced, psychologically insane. And all these things are good for the priest; he exploits you. His whole profession is to help you, but before he can help you, you must be put in a position where you need the help.
In India I came across many psychologists, psychiatrists, who had been trained in the West, and belonged to the Freudian school or the Jungian school or the Adlerian school or Assagioli’s school. They had one thing in common: they were all against me. And I told them, “Can you see the point? You are all against each other, but you agree on one point: that you are all against me. Why? – because I can simply destroy your profession.” And with the profession destroyed, the Freudian will suffer just as much as the Adlerian, just as much as the Jungian.
I can make man whole again. I can restore him to his integrated, centered, grounded being.
I am not a psychologist; I am not treating any psychological problems because to me those problems are created problems. They create the problem and then they come with the solution. And it is so easy to create the problem. You will be surprised how easy it is…

One of my professors – I was a student of psychology, and he was a famous psychologist… One day I just told him, “All the problems that psychologists deal with are created by them.”
He said, “You will have to prove it.”
I said, “Challenge accepted.”
And next day I proved it. I went to his wife, who was very loving toward me – he himself was very loving toward me – and I told her, “You have to do one thing, just for my sake, just once.”
She said, “What is it? Just tell me. If I can do it, I will.”
I said, “Do one thing: when your husband gets up in the morning, just say to him, ‘What happened? Your face looks pale. Couldn’t you sleep the whole night? Your eyes look red.’ Just put your hand on his head and ask, ‘Have you a fever or anything?’ And certainly he will say something. Whatsoever he says, write it down on a piece of paper – his words exactly – because I will collect it later on.”
She said, “But what is this whole business about?”
I said, “I will tell you by the evening, but right now simply remember it, and do it for me tomorrow morning.”
She said, “I will do it. It is done, believe me.”
Just on one side lived the postmaster of the university. He was a very old man and a very good man; I went to him and chit-chatted about his garden. He was very interested in flowers but nobody used to come to praise his garden; I was the only person, so he was very happy with me. I said, “Today you have to do something for me.”
He said, “What? Anything!”
I said, “When Professor Mehta goes to the university, when he comes out of his house, simply remain by the fence and say, ‘What has happened? You look like a ghost! Your legs are trembling.’”
He said, “Has something gone wrong with him?”
I said, “Nothing has gone wrong. But you have to say this and you have to show by your face that actually you mean what you are saying. He will say something; write it down exactly in his words and I will collect it.
Professor Mehta used to come to the department from his house; it was almost a mile, a beautiful road, so he used to walk. On both sides were gardens and professors’ houses, the professors’ colony. So I made a few people ready, particularly the wives, and a few small children – anybody I thought was reliable. And they were very happy, they said, “We will do it.”
And lastly, where Professor Mehta used to enter the department, was the peon who used to sit in front of the office. I said to him, “Dhyananda, I have never asked anything of you…”
He said, “That’s true. Everybody tortures me: ‘Dhyananda bring this, Dhyananda bring that.’ Professors torture me; students torture me. That’s true; you are the only person… In these two years, you have not even asked for a single glass of water. And I was wondering…this is rare. So whatever is to be done I will do.”
I said, “You have to do this: when Professor Mehta comes here, simply stand up and hold him saying, ‘You will fall down. You are trembling. What has happened?’”
He said, “But is it true?”
I said, “No, it is not true, but you have to pretend it is true.”
He said, “Okay. You have never asked anything from me – I will do my best.”
The next day I collected all the pieces of paper, because I was just following the professor. He was going ahead of me, and I was just following him collecting the papers. And Dhyananda really did a hatchet job. He really shook him so hard that he fell! I had to support him; we both took him inside. He said, “I am not even able to sit, just put me on the bench.” So we put him on the bench. I ran and brought a pillow and a blanket because he was shivering, perspiring.
I asked, “What has happened?”
He said, “It seems I have some strange fever. Last night when I went to bed, everything was okay. But now my headache is such as I have never had and I feel my whole body trembling. Just call the doctor. If it had not been for Dhyananda, I would have fallen and broken my leg.”
And it was actually because of Dhyananda that he was going to fall. Dhyananda was an uneducated man and he did it for real! I called the doctor, and I explained to him, “You have to be very serious. Nothing is the matter, it is only to do with a challenge that I’ve accepted; so just be kind to me – be very serious.”
He was very serious; he checked this and that, and he said, “Mr. Mehta, you need at least three months’ complete rest.”
Mr. Mehta said, “Three months complete rest! But what has happened?”
He said, “I cannot tell you. I will talk to your wife.”
And Professor Mehta said, “But do one thing please. Take me to my house in your car because I cannot walk back again. One mile…”
He was walking every day, coming and going, because he loved walking; he enjoyed walking, but he said, “Now I cannot walk.” To me he said, “Just go to the vice-chancellor and tell him that I am in a terrible mess; the doctor is saying three months… I don’t know what is going to happen, so tell him that if for a few days I don’t come, not to mind but replace me with somebody.”
I took him in the car with the doctor and we took him inside the house. The wife was just trying to hold herself together, otherwise she might have started giggling and laughing. And really her husband was changed completely. The doctor was holding one hand, I was holding the other hand, and he was not even able to walk. We put him on the bed, and he said to the doctor, “You can tell my wife.”
The doctor said, “I will come in my own time. First let me go and prepare some medicines for you. It is urgent.” So he left.
Professor Mehta asked me, “Has the doctor said anything to you?”
I said, “First look at these papers.”
He said, “What papers? Has he given them to you?”
I said, “No, read them first. This is the statement you gave to your wife: ‘I am perfectly okay, what nonsense are you talking?’ That was six o’clock this morning. And at seven-thirty you told the postmaster, ‘Yes, the night was a little disturbed.’ And then to Professor Nand Dulare Vajpeyel you said, ‘I had a terrible night.’ These are your statements. Nothing has happened to you – you can get up. There is no need to rest for three months, even three minutes are not needed; you are perfectly okay.”
“But,” he said, “I was perspiring and I was just going to fall.”
I said, “There is nothing to it. It was Dhyananda who just jumped on you and made you fall and you thought you were falling. He did it too well; I had not asked him to do that much and I had no idea that he would do it so perfectly. So get up!”
He immediately got up and he said, “Really? That’s true. I was perfectly okay last night, and this morning I was perfectly okay. When my wife spoke to me I simply said, ‘I am perfectly okay. What has happened to you?’ But when everybody started asking, strangely I started feeling that something was wrong. A small boy said, ‘Uncle your legs are wobbling,’ and I felt that certainly my legs were wobbling, otherwise why was this child…?”
I said, “This is the note from the child. These were all my men, women, children, Dhyananda, the doctor. I had to arrange this whole lot because I had accepted your challenge. I created the sickness. I could have managed it for three months, you may have even died.”
He said, “I cannot deny it. Seeing what has happened to me, it is possible that if I was in bed for three months and you went on trying your propaganda, you could have killed me.”
I said, “This is how your whole religion has been functioning: create problems in people’s minds and then where have they to go? They have to go to the priest. Then the priest gives the solution – and gets paid for it. What the psychologists are doing is the same. Out of a hundred cases, ninety cases are created by you people.”

I am not saying that the psychologists do it intentionally – nor are the priests doing it intentionally – they are doing it sincerely; they think it is so. They believe in what they are doing, and their belief is infectious, so the other person starts believing it. And then their solutions are there; their prescriptions are there.
If you go to a Freudian, then go to a Jungian, then go to an Adlerian, then go to Assagioli, you will know what I mean. All four will diagnose your disease differently because their scriptures are different. They will all tell you that this is the real problem with you, and no one is going to agree with anybody else. And because the problem is different, naturally the solution is going to be different. The problem has to be different; otherwise what purpose does Jung have in the world? Freud has already done the work.
That was the reason why Jung separated from Freud. He saw the point: that with Freud he would at the most be a great Freudian, but he would never be an individual on his own. And what Freud was doing, he could do. And Jung started doing it, and he was perfectly successful. Adler escaped in the same way. If Freud reduced everything to sex, Adler reduced everything to ego.
Naturally their solutions are different because they have posed the problem differently. And if by chance you succeed, following their solutions, then their therapy has succeeded, not you. But if you fail, you have failed; you were not following the rules properly. And to follow the rules of psychoanalysis or any other school properly is such a long affair.
You may need three years’ psychoanalysis, and by the time you finish the psychoanalysis you end up more puzzled, more messed up than you were ever before. Now you need somebody else’s help. Now you will need help for your whole life. There are people who have been psychoanalyzed their whole life, going from one psychoanalyst to another psychoanalyst.
The same was true with religions. They created the problem by repression.
In fact psychology has used what the religions, the pseudo-religions, have sown; the psychologists have been reaping the crop. The psychologist is really the modern priest and he is exploiting the same ground, with the same strategy. For thousands of years the priest has prepared the ground, but people were becoming fed up with the priest, so they were very happy that a new science appeared. It is not a science at all, just scientific jargon.
So the people who used to go to the priest, if they are educated, cultured, sophisticated, now go to the psychoanalyst – the same people. If they are not educated then they still go to the priest. The priest is cheaper, and less harmful because he is not so clever with words: conscious, super-conscious, sub-conscious, unconscious, collective unconscious, cosmic unconscious, cosmic conscious. The poor priest cannot afford that much.
You can be hypnotized by the psychoanalyst and his jargon. He has arguments to support him, and what he is saying is in a way right: you are repressed, but that work was done by religion. Religion condemned sex, condemned your love for food – condemned everything that you can enjoy – condemned music, condemned art, condemned singing, dancing. If you look around the world, and collect together all the condemnations from all the religions, you will see that they have condemned the whole of mankind. They have not left a single inch un-condemned.
Yes, each religion has done its bit – because if you condemn the whole of mankind completely, he may simply freak out. You have to do it proportionately, so that he becomes condemned, feels guilty, wants to be freed from guilt and is ready to take your help. You should not condemn him so much that he simply escapes from you or jumps into the ocean and finishes himself. That will not be good business.
It is just like the slaves in the old days. They were given food, but not enough that they became too strong and revolted, and not too little either so that they died; otherwise you made a loss. You gave them a certain percentage: just hanging in the middle between life and death, and they went on living and working for you. Only that much food was given, not more than that; otherwise there would be energy left after work, and that energy could become revolution. They could start revolting; they could start joining together, they could start seeing what was being done to them.
The same has been done by religions. Every religion has taken a different segment of mankind and condemned it, and through it made him feel guilty. Once guilt is created in you, you are in the clutches of the priest. You cannot escape now because he is the only one who can clean all the shameful parts of you, who can make you capable of standing before God without being ashamed.
He creates the fiction of God. He creates the fiction of guilt. He creates the fiction that one day you will have to stand before God: so be clean and be pure, and be in such a state that you can stand before him without any fear, and without any shame.
The whole thing is fictitious. But this has to be remembered: it is true about the pseudo-religions. And whenever I say all religions, I mean pseudo-religions; the plural is indicative of the pseudo.
When religion becomes scientific, it is not going to be plural; then it will be simply religion, and its function will be just the opposite of the pseudo-religions. Its function will be to make you free from God, to make you free from heaven and hell, to make you free from the concept of original sin, to make you free from the very idea that you and nature are separate; to make you free from any kind of repression.
With all this freedom you will be able to learn the expression of your natural being, whatsoever it is.
There is no need to feel ashamed. The universe wants you to be this way, that’s why you are this way. The universe needs you this way; otherwise it would have created somebody else, not you.
So not being yourself is the only irreligious thing according to me. Be yourself with no conditions, no strings attached – just be yourself and you are religious, because you are healthy, you are whole.
You don’t need the priest, you don’t need the psychoanalyst, you don’t need anybody’s help, because you are not sick, you are not crippled, paralyzed. All that crippled-ness and paralysis has gone with the finding of freedom.
Religion can be condensed into a single phrase: total freedom to be oneself.
Express yourself in as many ways as possible without fear; there is nothing to fear, there is nobody who is going to punish you or reward you. If you express your being in its truest form, in its natural flow, you will be rewarded immediately – not tomorrow but today, herenow.
You are punished only when you go against your nature. But that punishment is of help; it is simply an indication that you have moved away from nature, that you have gone a little astray, off the road. Come back!
Punishment is not revenge. No, punishment is only an effort to wake you up: what are you doing? Something is wrong, something is going against yourself. That’s why there is pain, there is anxiety, and there is anguish.
And when you are natural, expressing yourself just like the trees and the birds, who are more fortunate – because no bird has tried to be a priest, and no tree has yet got the idea of being a psychoanalyst. Just like the trees, and the birds, and the clouds, you will feel at home in existence.
And to be at home is all that religion is about.

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