Chapter 28: To Be a Stranger
More and more it happens that I’m alone, and I am beginning to love and enjoy this silent space. But a fear is coming up: I am afraid that in this way I will lose contact with others and I will become a stranger.
I feel a longing that brings me towards you, but a passion and desire to fall in love with someone seems to be no longer there.
Can you please tell me what is happening? Am I right or am I going astray?
The question you have asked raises many significant questions that will be useful for everybody. You are asking, “More and more it happens that I am alone, and I am beginning to love and enjoy this silent space. But a fear is coming up: I am afraid that in this way I will lose contact with others and I will become a stranger.”
To be a sannyasin is to be a stranger. To be a sannyasin is to be an outsider. You do not belong anymore to the crowd. You have chosen the path of a lion, to be alone, rather than the path of a sheep, to be always in the crowd. And now that it is happening to you, that you are beginning to love your aloneness, a fear is also arising that you may become a stranger; you may lose contact with others.
Have you ever thought what you have gained from the contact with others? What is the end result of being in the crowd except misery, anxiety? Except agony, what has been the contribution of the crowd to you? Yes, it has given you greed, it has given you violence, it has given you ambitions which are all ugly, it has given you self-hatred, it has given you a constant desiring for the future.but that is a strategy to take you away from the present. And remember, your longing for the future is never going to be fulfilled. All fulfillment is in the present.
The only people who have attained anything worthwhile are the people who had the courage to be strangers. There is certainly a fear in the beginning because the more you become a stranger, the more you are condemned; the more you become a stranger, the more you feel yourself without any support. You were always supported and you have forgotten that you can stand on your own; there is no need of any support. In fact all supports have made you crippled. If from the very beginning a child is supported, carried, he will never learn to walk on his own.
To be an outsider means you have dropped all that has been given by the past as heritage - and that heritage has nothing beautiful in it. It is full of bloodshed, wars, hatred. There is not a single thing that comes to you as a heritage that can be rejoiced in. If you are alert, and your aloneness is bound to make you very alert, you will be able to see that you have been carrying all kinds of garbage given to you by the older generation. There is not anything of any value, because anything of any value has to be discovered by yourself; it cannot be given to you by anyone else.