Organized religion is another form of politics. Just as I have always condemned politics as the lowest activity of human beings, the same is my attitude about organized religions. You can see it: the priests and the politicians have always been in conspiracy against humanity. They have been supporting each other. They have divided things between themselves so that your worldly life belongs to the politician, he is the ruler there, and your inner life belongs to the priest, he is the ruler there.
One sometimes feels so amazed…it seems unbelievable, that even in the twentieth century the pope could declare, a few months ago, that to communicate with God directly is a sin. You should go through the priest, the right channel – because if people start going directly to God, confessing to God, praying to God, the millions of priests will be unemployed. They don’t do anything; their whole function is to deceive you. Because you don’t understand the language of God, and you are not so evolved, just for some fee – a donation to their church or to their temple – they will do the job for you.
All those donations go in the pockets of the priests. They don’t know anything about God, but they are very learned – they can repeat scriptures like parrots. But their inner desire is not for God, not for truth – they are not seekers, they are exploiters.
I have heard…a priest bought two parrots and he taught them, with great hardship, beautiful statements of Jesus Christ. And everybody was really amazed – the parrots were so accurate. He made small beads for them so they were constantly praying, and he also found small bibles for them…. So they were always keeping their bibles open, and moving their beads. Although they could not read, they had already crammed everything. The priest would open the page and say, “Twelfth page,” and they would start reading it – not that they were reading; they had memorized it.
The priest was very pleased and he felt it would be good to have one more parrot. Rather than learning the bible and the beads, he could be taught to give whole sermons. He found a parrot, and the pet shop owner said, “Your wish will be fulfilled; this parrot is the most intelligent I have ever seen.”
But he was not aware that it was a female parrot. And as the parrot was put in the same cage as the two parrots who were moving their beads and reading the bible, they both looked at the female parrot, and one parrot said to the other, “George, now drop those beads! Our prayers have been heard.”
Your priests are no more than parrots – and their prayers are for power, for prestige, for money. They are politicians in disguise; they are doing politics in the name of God – the politics of numbers. There are now seven hundred million Catholics; naturally the pope is the most powerful religious man in the world.
Every religion has been trying to increase its population by different methods. Mohammedans are allowed to marry four women so that they can produce four children per year. And they have been successful: they are the second largest religion after Christianity.