He said, “I did not see anybody.” So in Moscow they have a planetarium. In golden letters on the gate of the planetarium is written, “There is no God. Yuri Gagarin has looked and He has not been found.”
You can go to the farthest stars – one day man will go, but he will not find God. And you will not find anywhere heaven and hell; they have never been there.
Religions have been playing upon your greed, your fear, your tremendous need for protection.
Man is in a very precarious condition. All kinds of fear – and particularly the fear of death, sickness, disease, old age – and they go on increasing. It is not only man that is evolving; diseases go on evolving side by side. The fear of poverty, the fear of dying hungry in a street, the fear that perhaps nobody needs you – that you are just accidental, that if you are gone nobody will ever miss you…. There are layers and layers of fear in your psychology.
The priests became aware of your fear very early, in the very beginning times of humanity. They were the first psychoanalysts. And your fear can be exploited, you just have to be convinced that if you do certain things you need not fear. If you do certain other things, then certainly you will fall into even deeper and darker spaces, into hellfire.
The earth is only a place where you have to prove whether you are worthy of enjoying heaven, or you deserve hell.
They exploited your greed. Who does not want to enjoy? Who does not want to live forever? Who does not want no sickness, no old age, to be always young, fresh? They created a heaven for your greed; it is the projection of your greed. And hell is the projection of your fear.
Naturally, someone has to be in the seat of judgment; otherwise, who is going to decide where to send you? Without a judge there will be difficulties: the stronger people, although they have committed every kind of crime, may enter into heaven; simple people who have never committed any crime will have to go to hell. No, somebody has to be there with omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent powers; somebody who can see all, who can be present everywhere, who knows all, who can do everything. An absolutely powerful God is needed to decide.
And it seems to be logical. If there is going to be something like a hell and a heaven, then somebody has to be decisive, and somebody has to force you to go to the right place. So they created God. Out of your fear and greed you accepted heaven and hell, and then you had to accept God.
In every culture, in every society, in every civilization, it is not the same God – obviously, because their psychologies differ. Their minds are conditioned differently, so their projections differ. There is a question here about the Mormons: they believe in a material God, and they also believe that God created the world out of preexisting material. Who created that material?