Chapter 7: A Tree Grows
Morality is mechanical, religion is organic. This is the first basic thing to be understood. Morality is put together from the outside, religion grows from the innermost core of your being. Morality comes out of conditioning, religion comes out of meditation. Morality is enforced by others, religion you have to seek and search for yourself. Morality is a social device, religion is an adventure. Morality is dominated by the politician and the priest, religion is a rebellion. Very rarely is a person religious - and whenever there is a religious person there is a great revolution around him.
Moral people are ordinary people, as ordinary as the immoral - sometimes even more ordinary than the immoral. The immoral may sometimes have courage but the moral has no courage. The immoral may sometimes have intelligence but the moral has no intelligence. The immoral may sometimes be original but the moral is always repetitive.
Morality is the greatest enemy of religion because it is a pseudo-coin. It pretends and it can deceive people. It has deceived down the ages; millions and millions of people are and have been deceived by morality. And they think that when they have morality they have religion.
The second thing: morality is always relative. You can have more intelligence than somebody else or somebody else can have more virtue than you. Somebody can be more courageous than you or more cowardly than you. Somebody can be more sharing, more loving, or you can be more loving than somebody else. Morality is comparative.
Nobody can be more religious than you or less religious than you - religion is non-comparative, when religion is there it is simply there. Can you say Buddha was more religious than Jesus? Can you say Mahavira was more religious than Mohammed? Can you say Lao Tzu was more religious than Krishna? It would be absurd, the very statement would be absurd - because religion is not quantity, it is quality of being. You cannot have more or less. There are no degrees. You can be more honest than somebody else, you can be more of a thief than somebody else - there are possibilities - but how can you be more religious or less religious than somebody else? Religion means awakening. Religion means you have come home. How can you be less at home or more at home than somebody else?
When a man has become aware, his awareness is always total and complete, utterly complete. It does not come in parts, it comes as a whole - hence it is holy. Religion comes as a whole, morality comes in all shapes and sizes. You can have a family size or a medium size morality - like toothpaste. Morality comes in all shapes and sizes, religion is just complete. Either it is or it is not.
Sometimes people come to me and they ask, “Who is more enlightened - Buddha or Mahavira?” The question is absurd. Who is more enlightened? Enlightenment means that you have gone beyond relativity; more and less cannot exist now. Who is more enlightened? Enlightenment means that you have disappeared - and so have all relative concepts. You are simply there a pure isness. Whenever anybody becomes a pure isness, a pure existence, a primordial innocence, there is no comparison. To go beyond comparison is to become enlightened - so you cannot ask the question, “Who is more enlightened?” The very question is meaningless.
Religion either is or is not. This is the second thing to be remembered.