Chapter 8: The Call of Your Own Interiority
And the rabbi’s wife said, “Don’t be so angry. You have such a vast library. There is no harm if this book also remains lying there in some corner. And even if you had to throw the book away, you could have done so after the young man had gone.”
The disciple went back to Baalshem. Baalshem asked him, “What happened?”
The disciple said, “There is no possibility of the rabbi ever having a change of heart, but perhaps his wife may someday change.” And then he reported the whole story.
Baalshem started laughing. He said, “You are naive. You have no idea about human psychology. And if you don’t believe me, go back and see. The rabbi must have picked up the book by now and be reading it. And there is no chance of his wife being transformed. That woman doesn’t even have hate in her heart; love is a far away call. But the rabbi became excited, emotionally charged. My work is done. Just go back - the rabbi will be reading the book.”
The disciple went back and he was astonished at what he saw: the book had disappeared from the road. He peeped in. The rabbi was in the garden and was browsing through the book, and the rabbi’s wife was not there.
Hate is the inverted form of love. It is love doing a headstand. So the number of the people who love me is quite big, but the number of people who hate me is even bigger, and I am grateful to both, because with those who love me, there is no question that they will not dive into my love. But those who hate me - if not today then tomorrow, if not tomorrow then the day after - they will pick up that book from the road and read it. There is no way they can avoid me. By hating me, they have created a relationship with me. Although they have created it in anger, a relationship is relationship.
I can understand the state of your mind. I can understand your love. But I want to assure you that I am living only because of your love, otherwise for me there is simply no reason for living. When I see the light shining in your eyes, I think to myself, “A little bit longer, perhaps a few more will enter the tavern, perhaps a few more will be filled with remembrance to drink this wine.”
Don’t worry about my body. That is for existence to worry about. Only worry about one thing: that as long as I am here, make this gathering of drunkards grow as large as you can. Because if this gathering keeps on growing and growing, then I assure you that I will stay amongst you.
Have you stopped initiating people into sannyas and creating disciples? Am I to be deprived of becoming your disciple?