Chapter 22: Gratitude Is the Only True Prayer
As the gardener is brought, all the trees feel so immensely happy that the symmetrical graph becomes almost a dance. Just as it has become crazy out of fear, so out of love it again becomes not the ordinary silent tree, but showing a tremendous joy as if the tree is jumping, dancing. And you can see the difference between the graphs. When the tree is afraid, the graph will show you that these lines are coming out of fear. And when the tree has suddenly seen the gardener who has taken care and grown it like his own children, the graph dances. And you can see in the graph that it is not out of worry, but out of a gratitude and out of a welcome - a friend has come. And other trees also do the same.
Man is capable of receiving immense joy if he only learns how to be grateful. So you are on the right path. But don’t go on thinking in terms that you are unworthy, because that has to be transformed into gratitude. It is certain, nobody is worthy. What have you done to be alive? What have you done to have such beautiful eyes? What have you done to have this potentiality of becoming a Gautam Buddha? You have not done anything; it is just coming out of the abundance of existence. Existence has so much that it has to share out of sheer necessity to unburden itself; it is overflowing. And if people remain thirsty, it is their own fault.
There is an ancient saying in India that you can remain thirsty standing on the bank of a river. Unless you learn how to bow down, fill your hands with water, the river is not going to jump towards you. It is available; just a little humbleness on your part, a little receptivity on your part, and you can quench your thirst.
Everything that is great in life is abundantly available; just don’t shrink in your unworthiness. It is a beautiful first step to experience it, but then for what are we worthy? Neither for life, nor for love, nor for this beautiful body - we are not worthy for anything; we have just taken all this for granted. This is the irreligious mind.
I don’t call a man irreligious who does not believe in God. I don’t call a man irreligious who does not go to the temples or churches. I don’t call a man irreligious if he denies heaven and hell and all that nonsense. But I call a man irreligious if he does not feel unworthy of all that he has received and is receiving every moment. With every breath, with every heartbeat life is continuously giving you. The same life is capable of giving you immense blissfulness, of which you cannot even have an idea unless you have tasted it.
Just change your unworthiness into gratefulness, into thankfulness. And to me, this kind of gratitude is the only true prayer. You don’t have to say anything - just the feeling of gratefulness that I don’t deserve, I don’t see why so much has been given to me and so much goes on showering on me. What can I do except be grateful?
This gratefulness should sink deep in your consciousness, in your very fibers and cells of body. You will simply become gratefulness, then it is prayer. And the things that are called prayer are just false. Millions of temples and churches and synagogues, and millions of people continuously praying.but their prayers are false because they are always asking for something. They are never thanking for what they have already received.