To continue my discourse on the heart, on what religion really is: I go into a church, it is empty—it is very silent, it is a spiritual place. But it is heavy, it is sombre—there is no joy there, it conveys heaviness and misery. I go to a stone circle—it is complete. I feel no heaviness, no melancholy. I feel lightness.
Hence I reject the church and accept the stone circle. You may put forward arguments for Christianity—you may say it is more moral, more powerful, more sophisticated. There are many arguments, but these are just beliefs and arguments—these are not the heart.
What I experience in the stone circle that I do not experience in the church is not an argument, it is not a belief. It is an experience. How can I doubt my experience? It cannot be wrong, it cannot be right. It is just my heart knows where it is complete. Your arguments may be true or false, may be badly constructed or without fallacies—but that is irrelevant. Your arguments cannot change my heart.
It is the same with Jesus: he goes into the Temple and overthrows the moneylenders. He is not a religious authority, religious authorities have adduced arguments for why the moneylenders can be there—these arguments may or may not be correct or in line with Jewish law. Jesus makes no reference to them, he is an obscure man not trained in Jewish law.
Jesus goes in and overturns the tables because in his heart the moneylenders should not be in the Temple. It is not an argument, he does not make an argument—he just whips the moneylenders out. The law he follows is the law of the heart—“the sacred heart of Jesus”, per the depictions in Catholic imagery. It is the law “direct from God”—direct from the sacred heart, direct from “my Father”; just as the Egyptians venerated the “trough of blood” that is the heart—the path to the Father.
The heart is not your emotions—that is how the modern world has come to see it, to “speak from the heart” is to speak from the emotions. However, if you still the ego, which is all emotion, and let the heart speak then it will direct you in an objective way—for in the subtle body, our second body, the heart is the seat of the intellect, not the brain. I say intellect, but rather it is the intuition—higher than any process of ratiocination, it is synonymous with the nous or the magical will.
But you have to still the ego first—the ego is filled with beliefs, emotions, arguments, ideas, images. Why Christianity is wrong! Why moneylenders should be in the Temple (10 key points from rabbinic law)! Christ Jesus justified—an apologia for a life as a missionary in Togoland! And so on.
All arguments, all ego—not the heart, not the subtle body, not the supra-senses.
In fact, in a church there are ways to activate the supra-senses—like frankincense and myrrh. Did you know that in India these various scents, like frankincense and myrrh, are related to the subtle body? There is a correspondence between these senses and the colours—so that the incense burned in a church is similar to when a yoga pose is adopted to activate the subtle body.
That is a diversion, but it is an illustration as to what lies behind what happens in churches—and how that relates to other religions, and how Christianity expresses, in this regard, only a small amount of the wisdom found in Hinduism. And it is also connected to the church above, because it is only in silence, when the ego is stilled, that we know the heart—it speaks beyond feelings, and beyond words.
You see the point: knowledge of the heart is not a belief, it is not a doctrine, it is not a theory. “The heart knows what it knows”, “the heart wants what it wants”—people use these as expressions for emotions or changes of belief, but few, so very few, have really penetrated to their own heart and learned to trust it; and those who have know God.
That is why if people come to me with arguments for Christianity, for Islam, for Buddhism—for whatever you may say—then it does not make a difference to me. Not because I am irrational or fanatical—I will listen to and assess their arguments—but because I know my heart, and because I know my heart I know that I am not a Christian, or a Muslim, or a Buddhist, or a Hindu.
And in this way, however, I do understand Jesus—but not as his followers would have me do. Rather, I understand him as a man who knew his heart, as I know my heart, even though what our hearts want are different things. And you can legislate from the heart, without reference to written laws—and you can change reality with the heart, and change it without whipping moneylenders or undertaking any physical action whatsoever.
Hence I sometimes say things that sound very traditional, but at other times I sound very radical—but that is because I follow my heart. I just see the situation as it is—if the tradition must go, it must go; if it must be restored, it must be restored. If you think “traditions must always be upheld”, that is an idea—not reality; if you think “everything must be overturned to make the world fair”, that is an idea—not reality. If it is broken, repair it; if it is oppressive, overthrow it—but it is not a doctrine, you must see with the heart and act on what you see.
All religious figures are like that—Buddha, Jesus, Mohammad; they both overturn everything and restore everything at the same time—because they are in touch with reality, with the heart.