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Chapter 7: Learning the Knack

Fear and greed have been exploited. The priest has behaved with you almost like the psychologist behaves with the rats upon which he goes on experimenting. The rats in psychological experiments are controlled by punishment and reward. Reward them, and they start learning the thing for which they are rewarded; punish them, and they start unlearning the thing for which they are punished.

The priests have behaved with men as if men are rats. Psychologists are not the first to dehumanize humanity; priests were the pioneers. First the priests behaved with men as if they were rats, now the psychologists are behaving with rats as if they are men. But the process is the same, the technique exactly the same.

There are people who are theists - believers in God, churchgoers, worshippers - and yet in their hearts there is no yes; in their hearts there is doubt. On the surface they behave religiously, deep down they are suspicious. And it is the depth that determines you. It is not what you do that is decisive, it is what you feel at the deepest core of your being that determines you, that creates you. And there are atheists who go on saying there is no God, but they are not in any way different from the believers. Their disbelief has as much doubt in it as the belief of the believers.

In Soviet Russia, in China, and in other red countries, disbelief is the belief; not to believe is to be a conformist, to believe is to be a revolutionary. The state goes on teaching that there is no God. If people are taught continuously, conditioned continuously, they become whatsoever they are conditioned for. It is a kind of mass hypnosis.

Theists, atheists, both are victims. The really religious person has nothing to do with the Bible or the Koran or the Bhagavadgita. The really religious person has a deep communion with existence. He can say yes to a roseflower, he can say yes to the stars, he can say yes to people, he can say yes to his own being, to his own desires. He can say yes to whatsoever life brings to him; he is a yea-sayer. And in this yea-saying is contained the essential prayerfulness.

The last words of Jesus on earth were: “Thy kingdom come, thy will be done. Amen.”

Do you know this word amen, what it means? It simply means “Yes, Lord, yes. Let thy will be done. Don’t listen to what I say, I am ignorant. Don’t listen to what I desire; my desires are stupid - bound to be so. Go on doing whatsoever you feel right - go on doing it in spite of me.” That is the meaning of the word amen. Mohammedans also end their prayer with amin - it is the same word.

Your question is tremendously significant. First, it is not a question, hence it is significant. It is a declaration, it is a dedication, it is surrender, it is trust.

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