So Jews, Christians and Mohammedans say if you are already divine, then religion becomes meaningless. If you are already divine in the seed, then there is no real evolution, then there is no growth. And whatsoever you do or don’t do, you will remain divine.
Christians, Mohammedans and Jews say religious growth is possible only if man is man and God is God. You come nearer and nearer, and that coming nearer is a growth. It is your choice. You may not come near, you may go far away – this is your freedom. But if you are already divine, then, Jews, Mohammedans and Christians say, then there is no real growth. All growth becomes illusory, just a dream growth. You were bound to become divine because in the seed you were already divine. So the whole thing becomes hocus-pocus, they say; the whole evolution becomes meaningless.
Hindus take a standpoint just between these two standpoints. They agree with Jainas that man is divine and they agree with Christians, Mohammedans and Jews that there is God as the creator. And still, they say, there is growth, there is evolution. Not only that: they say only then is growth possible. But to them growth means just unfoldment. A seed grows, and the growth is real, authentic, because a seed may not grow and may remain a seed forever; there is no inner necessity to grow. But a seed grows only to be a particular tree because that tree is already potential in it.
Man can remain man, or man may even fall down and become animal, or man can grow to be divine. This is choice. This is freedom. But this possibility, that man can become divine, shows that somewhere deep down in the seed form man is already divine. So it is an unfoldment. Something hidden becomes actual, something potential becomes actual, something that was just a seed becomes a tree.
So, in a way, the Hindus’ God is totally different from the Mohammedans’ and the Christians’ God, because for Hindus man can become God. And they say that if you cannot become God, then even the concept of coming nearer and nearer is false – because if you cannot jump into the flame, what does it mean to come nearer and nearer? Then what is the difference between you and someone who is not near? If you can come nearer, then the logical conclusion will be: more near, more near, more near, and ultimately you become one. If you cannot become one, then there is a limit, a boundary, and beyond that boundary and limit there will be a gap between you and the divine. That gap cannot be tolerated. And if there is a gap which it is not possible to bridge, the whole effort is useless.
Hindus say unless you become the divine itself, the urge will not be fulfilled. And the nearer you are, the more you will feel the gap, and the more you will suffer. And when you come to the boundary line from where no growth is possible, you will stagnate and you will die, and the suffering will be unbearable, absolutely unbearable.