Chapter 4: To Become Free in an Unfree Society
You go on interpreting dreams, and you think dreams are the reality. In the East our standpoint is just the opposite. We have been looking into life and we have found that life itself is a dream. You think that by interpreting dreams you have interpreted reality. Just on the contrary, we have looked into life and found that it is nothing but a dream. And why this reluctance? The East was a fear to Jung. He was afraid of the East and there was something in it: he was afraid of the East because the East would reveal the reality of his own understanding - that it was false. Had he been to Ramana, had he been to some other mystic in the East, he would have immediately realized that whatsoever he had attained was nothing. It was just on the steps of the temple. He had not entered the shrine yet. But in the West, anything goes. Without their knowing what self-realization is, they call it self-realization. You can call it anything; it depends on you.
Self-realization is coming to no-self, coming to an absolute emptiness within, coming to the point where you are not. The drop has dissolved into the ocean and only the ocean exists. Then who dreams? Then who is left there to dream? The house is empty, there is nobody.
The second question:
You said that imitation of any kind, even imitation of a buddha, is alien to pure consciousness. But we see that all our cultural life is nothing but imitation. In that case, is culture itself alien to religion?
Yes, culture, society, civilization, all are alien to religion. Religion is a revolution, a revolution in your cultural conditioning, a revolution in your social conditioning, a revolution in all the spheres that you have lived and you are living. Every society is against religion. I’m not talking about your temples and mosques and churches that society has created. Those are tricks. Those are things to befool you. Those are substitutes for religion, they are not religion. They are to misguide you. You need religion: they say, “Yes, come to the temple, to the church, to the gurudwara. Here it is religion. You come and pray and the preacher is there who will teach you religion.” This is a trick. Society has created false religions: those religions are Christianity, Hinduism, Jainism.. But a Buddha, or a Mahavira, or a Jesus, or a Mohammed, always exists beyond society. And society always fights with them. When they are dead, then the society starts worshipping them, then the society creates temples. And then there is nothing; the reality is gone, the flame has disappeared. Buddha is no longer there in the statue of a Buddha. In the temples you will find the society, the culture, but not religion. But what is religion?