Chapter 7: Have Mercy and Not Sacrifice
In a society with so many people you need lubricants around you so that there is not so much conflict. You can move easily, movement is not very difficult, and you don’t rub against the neighbor. No conflict arises - the lubricant goes on flowing around you. You go to church as a lubricant. It helps, it helps in a social way; it is a formality. Filled full, you become respectable. It is just like becoming a member of the Rotary Club - it is respectable, it helps. You become a member of a church, that too helps. You become a member of a religion, that too helps. People think you are religious, and when people believe you are, you can deceive them more easily. When you have a garb around you that you are religious, you have a potential weapon with you. Your religion is a consolation to yourself and a respect-ability. In fact, it is politics, a diplomacy - part of your struggle to survive, part of your ambition, part of the whole politics of the ego. It is power politics.
These things have to be remembered when you try to understand Jesus. Also religion is not morality. Morality, again, is just the rules of the game. Those who want to play the game of the society have to follow the rules of it - just like when you play cards you have to follow certain rules. Not that those rules have any ultimacy about them, not that they come from God. You create the game, you create the rules, you follow the rules. But if you want to play, you have to follow the rules.
Morality has nothing ultimate in it. That’s why every society has its own morality, every culture has its own morality. One thing can be moral in India and can be immoral in America; another thing can be moral in America and may be immoral in India. If morality is really real, then it cannot differ.
In India, to divorce a woman or a man is immoral. It is not thought to be good. Once you are married you have to live with your partner. But in America, if you live with a woman you don’t love it will be thought immoral. If you don’t love, then it is immoral to sleep with that woman. Only love, only a deep love allows you to be with the woman. Otherwise, leave her. Don’t deceive her, don’t waste her life.
Morality is a game; it changes. From society to society, age to age, period to period, it goes on changing. It depends, it has nothing ultimate about it.
But religion is ultimate. It has nothing to do with America or India. It has something to do with a new consciousness within the individual. It is a sunrise in the individual, it is a new being arising and expanding in the individual. You have a new look, you have new eyes through it. You can see the old problems, but they disappear. Not that they are solved - they simply disappear, they dissolve. With a new eye, they cannot be there. You have a new vision, a new dimension. These things have to be remembered because when a Jesus - a man like Jesus - comes, these things become the problem.
I have heard an Arabian proverb: it says - “Show a man too many camels’ bones or show them to him too often, and he will not be able to recognize a camel when he comes across a live one.”
“Show a man camels’ bones too many times, or too often, and” - the Arabian saying says - “that man will not be able to recognize a camel when he comes across a live one.” This happens when a Jesus comes to the world. You have seen so many phony priests, you have seen so many hocus-pocus preachers, you have seen so many scholars, not knowing anything but creating much fuss about it, that when a Jesus comes you cannot recognize him. Whenever a Jesus or a Buddha comes, it becomes almost impossible to recognize him. For the majority, it is almost impossible. Only a few rare beings who have some potentiality, or who are a little alert, only they can have a few glimpses.