Monotheism is a far more efficient way of exploiting people. Hinduism is polytheistic; it has as many gods as you can think of. When Hinduism came into existence, there used to be thirty-three million people in India. Hinduism has exactly thirty-three million gods. This seems to be far more democratic – everybody has a god of his own. Rather than worshipping somebody else’s God, it is far better to have your own private god. There is no conflict.
No Hindu scripture says, “One God, one scripture, one prophet.” All Hindu scriptures say, “There are as many gods as there are people.” That’s why Hinduism is very inefficient. It has to be: it is not an army, it does not have a pope, it does not have any organized central body. It is a very disorganized chaos, so there is every freedom for everybody.
Somebody becomes a Mahavira; Hinduism has no objection. Somebody becomes a Buddha; Hinduism has no objection. Both were born Hindus, both went against Hindus. There is no problem, because there is no central body to appoint a court, a grand jury, to judge whether Mahavira is authentic if he does not believe in God. His whole effort is that you should develop your consciousness to the ultimate peak: everybody is a god.
Mahavira’s interpretation of thirty-three million gods was that because there are thirty-three million people, they all are going to become gods one day. When they evolve to the highest peak, they are all going to become gods. It is a probability: there are not yet thirty-three million gods, but thirty-three million potential gods. That gives a great freedom, and there is no need of any priest. You have your private god on a direct line.
But a monotheist religion, Christianity, will not allow any buddha; hence it has remained poor in consciousness. Its religion looks very primitive. It is based on fictions. Nothing has been contributed by monotheistic religions to the world except war, because the Mohammedan God cannot tolerate the Jewish God, neither can it tolerate the Christian God, neither can it tolerate the Hindu gods. It has to kill all those gods and the believers of those gods. Only one God!
So when Mohammedans came to India they destroyed millions of beautiful temples which were made over centuries by great sculptors. They destroyed millions of statues, beautiful statues of Buddha, Mahavira, and other Jaina tirthankaras. Whatever is left is a very small amount. Perhaps some temple was left because it was hidden deep in the forest.
In every village you will find that when the Mohammedans came, people just threw their gods, their beautiful statues, into the wells just to protect them from the Mohammedans; otherwise they would have destroyed their statues. So in every village – it happens often – you will suddenly find, in summertime when the water goes down, a Buddha arising, and people pull the Buddha out. He has been lying in the well for centuries, but he has been protected. People had forgotten, because those who had thrown the statues in had died centuries ago.
Mohammedans came two thousand years ago, and they destroyed everything. They could not tolerate it: their God was intolerant, how can they be tolerant? Monotheism is the most ugly religion in the world, because it is intolerant. Intolerance creates violence.