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Chapter 23: So Very Close

You can conceive the situation of poor God. He was so fed up with man that he never made anything after he had made man. It is not that his creativity was exhausted with man; he could have created many more things, but man was too much! He was repenting - why had he created man? Without man life was peace, silence, trees, animals and birds. They were all joyous, without any fear of death, without any religions, without any philosophies, without any theologies, without any wars. Things were utterly silent - but the moment he created man he committed his first and last mistake. So he asked, “Now what to do?”

Somebody suggested, “Go to Everest.”

He said, “You don’t know.I can see the future. Soon Tensing and Edmund Hillary are going to reach there, and if they find me there then you can be sure roads will be made, airports will be made, buses will be running, trains may be reaching, airplanes will be landing - and the same trouble will start there.”

Somebody said, “Then it is better you move to the moon.”

But he said, “You cannot see the future. To me, past, future and present are all simultaneously available. Soon they are going to reach the moon. It is only a question of a little time - and in the eternity of existence, a few years, a few hundred years, don’t mean anything. Give me some idea where they will never reach!”

And an old angel who had been listening all the time whispered in his ear, “Then there is only one place. You start living in man himself; that is the only place he will not bother to look. He will look for you all around the world, to the faraway stars, but he will not look within.”

When the first Russian astronaut came back - he was the first man to reach close to the moon, circulating around it, studying it, bringing photographs from there - the first question asked to him in Russia was, “Did you see God there?”

And he said, “I didn’t see anybody. There is not even water, there is not even a single tree - there is no possibility of anybody being there. Life cannot exist. The air is so thin - oxygen is one eighth of what it is on the earth, so I don’t see any possibility. God is not there.”

This man Yuri Gagarin.they have made a museum in Moscow in memory of Yuri Gagarin, the first man who came close to the moon. On the top of the museum they have written, “We have searched everywhere, we have even looked on the moon, and God is not there!”

Perhaps the old angel was right: “They will look for you everywhere. Just start living in the very innermost core of man himself.” And since then God has been at peace.

Of course since then you have not been in peace, because even complaining gives a great relief, and now there is nobody to complain to. In the churches, in the synagogues, in the temples, people are still doing the same nagging device they call prayer. They are still suggesting, “Do it this way! Don’t do it that way!”

In the Second World War Germany was praying, “Victory has to be to the Germans,” and England was praying, “Victory has to be to the English.” But now all these prayers disappear into the empty sky; there is nobody to hear them.

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