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Chapter 2: Innocence Is a Light unto Itself

There is only one basic fear. All other small fears are byproducts of the one main fear that every human being carries with himself: the fear is of losing yourself. It may be in death, it may be in love, but the fear is the same: you are afraid of losing yourself.

And the strangest thing is that only those people are afraid of losing themselves who don’t have themselves. Those who have themselves are not afraid. So it is really a question of exposure You don’t have anything to lose; you just believe that you have something to lose.

I was traveling with Mulla Nasruddin and the ticket checker came. I showed him my ticket, and Mulla started searching for his ticket. He opened one of his suitcases, then another suitcase, and went through all his pockets - coat, pants, shirt - but I saw that he was avoiding one pocket.

Watching him, even the ticket checker said, “Don’t be worried. You are a well-known person. You can’t travel without a ticket; it must be somewhere. You have so much luggage.” He said, “I will be coming back in the second round. By that time you may have found it.”

He went away, and Mulla was still perspiring and searching for the ticket.

I said, “Mulla, I can see only one thing - that you are looking into everything but you are not looking into one pocket.”

He said, “Just don’t raise that question, because I am already in such trouble.”

But I said, “What has that pocket to do with trouble?”

He said, “It has everything to do with it. That is the only place I am hoping that the ticket may be, and I don’t want to lose that hope. First let me look in everything else. That is my last resort; I also know that I am avoiding it. The ticket checker was looking at that pocket, you are also looking at that pocket. It is not that I am not aware. With full consciousness I am avoiding it, because if it is not there then the ticket is nowhere.”

The fear of coming close is the fear of exposure.

Who knows? - as you come close to the master, in his presence, in his light you may find that you don’t exist. And that will be almost a death.bigger than death. So people keep at a certain distance.

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