Chapter 4: From the Beyond
The first question:
What has gone wrong? Why is it that people meet everything new rather reluctantly, and with fear, rather than with eager joy?
The new does not arise out of you, it comes from the beyond. It is not part of you. Your whole past is at stake. The new is discontinuous with you, hence the fear. You have lived in one way, you have thought in one way, you have made a comfortable life out of your beliefs. Then something new knocks on the door. Now your whole past pattern is going to be disturbed. If you allow the new to enter you will never be the same again, the new will transform you.
It is risky. One never knows where you will end with the new. The old is known, familiar; you have lived with it for long, you are acquainted with it. The new is unfamiliar. It may be the friend, it may be the enemy, who knows. And there is no way to know. The only way to know is to allow it; hence the apprehension, the fear.
And you cannot remain rejecting it either, because the old has not given you yet what you seek. The old has been promising, but the promises have not been fulfilled. The old is familiar but miserable. The new is maybe going to be uncomfortable, but there is a possibility - it may bring bliss to you. So you cannot reject it either and you cannot accept it; hence you waver, you tremble, great anguish arises in your being. It is natural, nothing has gone wrong. This is how it has always been, this is how it will always be.
Try to understand the appearance of the new. Everybody in the world wants to become new, because nobody is satisfied with the old. Nobody can ever be satisfied with the old because whatsoever it is, you have known it. Once known it has become repetitive; once known it has become boring, monotonous. You want to get rid of it. You want to explore, you want to adventure. You want to become new, and yet when the new knocks on the door you shrink back, you withdraw, you hide in the old. This is the dilemma.
How do we become new? - and everybody wants to become new. Courage is needed, and not ordinary courage; extraordinary courage is needed. And the world is full of cowards, hence people have stopped growing. How can you grow if you are a coward? With each new opportunity you shrink back, you close your eyes. How can you grow? How can you be? You only pretend to be.