Chapter 5: This Moment Is All
The first question:
So many times I want to say thank you, but somehow the silence says it so much better than the words.
The really significant things in life can never be said through words; only silence is capable of communion. Words are utilitarian, they belong to the marketplace; hence, when you really want to say something of the heart, you will always find it unsayable. Love cannot be uttered, gratitude cannot be spoken of; prayer is bound to be a deep silence inside you. And this is of fundamental importance to understand, because we are brought up through words with the idea as if everything can be said - and we try to say it. And by saying those things which are not sayable, we falsify them.
Lao Tzu says: Tao cannot be said; the moment you say it you have already falsified it. Truth cannot be communicated, no word is adequate enough, big enough to contain it. It is so vast, vaster than the sky, and words are so tiny. They are good for day-to-day things, utilitarian ends. As you start moving towards the non-utilitarian you start moving beyond words. That’s what religion exactly is: transcendence of words and transcendence of the world that belongs to words.
The mind consists of words; the heart consists only of silence, profound silence, virgin silence, unbroken silence. Not even once anything has stirred there, in the very center of your being.
Feel blessed that something arises in you for which words seem to be irrelevant. This is prayer. The prayers that people do in churches, in temples, are not prayers; they are simply expressing their desires. And unless they stop this stupid kind of praying, they will never taste the real nectar of prayer. They will remain absolutely unaware of the transcendental.
Words can be Christian, Hindu, Mohammedan, Buddhist; silence is simply silence. You cannot call silence Christian or Hindu or Mohammedan. It is indefinable. No adjective can be put before it.
Silence is religious. Your so-called prayers are nothing but asking God to fulfill your desires. It is not thankfulness for all that has been already given to you; it is really a complaint. It is a complaint: why more has not been given to you? Desire means complaint, desire means hankering for more - that this is not enough, that you have not been fair to me, that this is unfair; others are having more. Prayer in its truest sense is thankfulness, gratitude, but there is no way to say it. There is no need to say it.