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Chapter 23: Session 23

One man - I will not tell you his name because he betrayed me, and it is better not to mention somebody who betrayed me and is still alive - was sleeping in my room. He was awakened by my laughter, and I said to him, “Don’t be worried. I cannot be more mad than I already am. You go to sleep.”

“But,” he said, “just one question, otherwise I cannot go to sleep: Why did you laugh?”

I said, “I was just telling myself a joke.”

He laughed and went to sleep without even asking what the joke was.

I knew that very moment what kind of seeker he was. In fact, like a flash of lightning I saw that this man was not going to be with me very long. So I did not initiate him into sannyas, although he insisted. Everybody wondered, because I was insisting for others to “take the jump” yet resisting all persuasion from that man. He wanted to take the jump and I said, “Please wait.”

Within two months it was clear to everybody why I had not given sannyas to him. Within two months he had left; leaving is not a problem, but he became my enemy. To be my enemy is inconceivable to me - yes, even to me. I cannot believe how anybody can be an enemy to me. I have not harmed anybody in my life. You cannot find a more harmless creature. Why should anybody be my enemy? Must be something to do with the person himself. He must be using me as a screen.

I would have liked to initiate my grandmother, but she was in the village of Gadarwara. I even tried to contact her, but Kulu-Manali is nearly two thousand miles from Gadarwara.

“Gadarwara” is a strange name. I wanted to avoid it, but it had to come anyway, this way or that, so it is better to be finished with it. It means “the village of the shepherd”; it is even stranger, because the place in Kashmir where Jesus is buried is called Pahalgam, which also means “the village of the shepherd.” In the case of Pahalgam it is understandable, but why my village? I have never seen any sheep there, nor any shepherds. Why is it called “the village of the shepherd”? There are not many Christians there either; in fact, only one. You will be surprised, he is the father of a small church, and I used to be his only listener.

He once asked me, “It is strange: you are not a Christian so why do you come exactly on time, every Sunday without fail?” He went on, “Whether it rains or there is a hailstorm, I have to come because I think that you must be waiting, and you are always here. Why?”

I said, “You don’t know me. I just love to torture people, and to listen to you torturing yourself for one hour, saying things you don’t mean, and not saying things that you do mean, is such a joy to me. I would come even if the whole village were burning. You can rely on me: I would still be here exactly on time.”

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