Every Buddhist scripture begins: “I have heard Gautam the Buddha say….” It is a hearsay, it is not knowledge. You may have heard Gautam the Buddha say something – that does not mean that you have come to know it. It may become part of your memory, you may be able to repeat it like a parrot…. That’s all that your priests, your pundits, are doing all over the world – simply repeating exactly the way the parrot repeats, without knowing what he is saying.
The pundits don’t know what they are saying. They have heard, they have memorized; their memory is good, but their intelligence does not exist.
True knowledge means your own experience, your own search – and when you know yourself there is no need to believe in anything. Every belief is poisonous because every belief will hinder you in searching for the truth.
Now the whole world believes in something or other. You ask anybody about God – either he believes that God exists…and there are a few who believe that God does not exist; but both are beliefs. The communist believes that God does not exist, but he has not explored, he has not gone into his own consciousness – what to say about the whole existence? He has not explored his own small being.
And there are millions who say, “We believe in the existence of God.” But your belief cannot create a God – if he does not exist your belief makes no difference. And if you believe in a God, naturally your seeking stops. Why should one seek and search when he believes? That’s why all the religions emphasize faith, so that they can stop your search.
Faith is a block.
Search means you are still doubting, you are still not certain. Faith means you are absolutely certain that God exists. Now there is no question of inquiring. And if man goes on believing in such things which imply many absurdities….
For example. Galileo was told by the pope, “In your book you have to change the statement that the earth moves around the sun, because it goes against The Bible”. The Bible says that the sun goes around the earth, and that’s everybody’s experience too. Certainly it appears so. In the morning it rises, in the evening it goes down – it looks as if it is going around the earth.
Galileo was seventy-five years old – he was almost dragged from his deathbed to the court to give an apology, because anything that is said in The Bible cannot be disbelieved. It is the word of God; no inquiry is possible.
Galileo said, “Such a small thing which has nothing to do with religion at all…. What does it matter whether the sun moves around the earth or the earth moves around the sun? It has no religious significance.”
The pope said, “It is not a question of religious significance. The question is that if one thing is wrong in The Bible, then the faith is shaken – perhaps other things may be also wrong. If God has some stupid idea, then what is the guarantee that other things that are said are not of the same quality? So not a single word can be questioned.”