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Chapter 10: Seeing Double

What to do? There seem to be only two ways: either be an extrovert - but by being an extrovert you can never become a buddha, because if you are worried about others, this worrying about others may be an escape. It is. You cannot look at your own worries when you are worried about others. Your focus is others, you are in a shadow. But how will your inner being grow this Way? You will look more happy, you may look as if you are enjoying life more, but how are you going to grow? How will your inner being come to that point where it becomes light? If you are not concerned with it at all, it is not going to grow. To be an extrovert is good in the sense that you remain healthy - you don’t become a pervert. To be an introvert is dangerous. If you move wrongly, you will become a pervert and the wrong movement is that you become too concerned. Then what to do? Treat yourself as if you also are the other; don’t be too concerned.

And you are the other. Your body is other, why not my own body also? Your mind is other, why not my own mind? The question is only distance: your body is five feet away from me, my body is a little closer, that’s all. Your mind is there, my mind is here - the difference is of distance. But my mind is as other as your mind, and my body is as far away from me as your body. And if this whole world is not a concern to me, why make myself a concern? Why not leave both and be neither extrovert nor introvert? - this is my message.

If you cannot follow this then it is better to follow the psychoanalysts. Be an extrovert, be unconcerned; you will not grow but at least you will not suffer so much as an introvert suffers. But don’t be an introvert and don’t play with your wounds. Don’t be concerned too much. Don’t be so selfish and don’t be so self-centered. Look at yourself from a distance; the distance is there, you only have to try it once and you will feel it. You are also the other.

When your body is ill it is as if somebody else’s body is ill: do whatsoever is needed but don’t be too concerned, because that overmuch concern is a greater illness than the body’s. If you have a fever go to the doctor, take the medicine, take care of the body, and that’s all. Why be concerned too much? Why create another fever - which no doctor can treat? This fever in the body can be treated, but if you become too concerned another fever is created. That fever is deeper, no doctor can help with it.

And this is the problem: the body may become well soon, but the other fever may continue; and the other fever may go on continuing, and you may feel that the body is still ill. This happens every day: the disease disappears from the body but not from the mind and the mind carries it on. It has happened many times.

Once somebody was telling me about his friend who is a drunkard - he walks on crutches, he cannot walk without them. For many years he has been walking on crutches - some accident some twenty years ago. Then one day he had taken too much drink; he forgot the crutches and went out for a walk. After one hour he came running back in a panic; he said, “Where are my crutches? I cannot walk without them! I must have taken too much.” But if while you are drunk you can walk, why not when you are not drunk?

All over the world many cases are reported about paralysis. Somebody is paralyzed and then the house catches fire and everybody runs out, and the man who was paralyzed and who couldn’t get out of his bed - everything was done in the bed - he also runs out, because he forgets. The house is on fire, he forgets completely that he is paralyzed. In that forgetfulness he is not paralyzed. And outside the house the family looks at him and says, “What are you doing? How can you run?” - and he falls down; remembering comes back.

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