Once I was in a court for the first time, in a strange case. There used to be a Christian church, a very beautiful church with vast grounds around it, huge ancient trees… You will be surprised that Indian Christianity is the oldest Christianity in the world. One of Jesus Christ’s closest disciples, Thomas, came to India directly. His gospel is not included in the Bible, because his gospel was written in India. It is the most beautiful gospel. Those four gospels included in the New Testament are nothing compared to it.
Thomas became a transformed man here, because he started seeing the difference between God-oriented religion and a religion without a God. A religion without a God gives man dignity, because man becomes the ultimate evolved consciousness in the whole of existence. It gives man freedom from a burden imposed by the priest in the name of God.
And you have asked, “Could one summarize the difference between a God-oriented religion and the quality of religiousness as the difference between a judge external to us…?”
There is no judge, and there is no religiousness in a God-oriented religion. It is mere theology, it is a mind project. It is not existential, it is not experiential.
And you are asking, “Could one summarize the difference between a God-oriented religion…?” First remember, the God-oriented religion is only a name. God is fiction, so anything oriented in God cannot be anything else but a lie.
And secondly, you are asking, “…and the quality of religiousness?” The God-oriented so-called religion has no religiousness to it. It has a certain morality, it has a certain imposed discipline which is against nature.
God is the enemy of nature, because nature is truth and God is a lie. But the lie is dominating millions of people and telling them to withdraw from nature, which is the only truth. So there is no religiousness in a God-oriented person. What he has is a morality, which is nothing but a social convenience. It differs from place to place, from country to country, from race to race. What seems to be religious to one fragment of humanity is not religious to another fragment of humanity, because every society has its own climate, its own heritage, its own past – which is different from other societies.
For example, the Hindu conception of heaven is that of a centrally air-conditioned place. Not that they have used the centrally air-conditioned word, but they say the whole day a cool breeze, fragrant, blows; it is never hot in heaven. Obviously, it shows that the people who have projected this lie are living in a hot country, and they don’t want to live in a hot place eternally.
The Tibetans have their heaven very warm, no snow at all; no winter ever happens in their heaven. They are suffering from cold and winter and snow. They are projecting something which they can tolerate eternally. This life is small, but to suffer the same thing eternally will be too much. The human mind is too frail, too weak.
Just watch what each country thinks of as religious. In India, you have to take a morning bath before the sunrise and say your prayer, and only then can you eat anything – your breakfast – not before that. In the religious scriptures of Tibet it says you should take a bath at least once a year!