Chapter 7: Wander Alone
There is a famous story: The Idiot. In a village there was a fool who was very troubled because no matter what he said the people laughed at him. They had decided that he was a total idiot - even when he said something right they still laughed at him. He was cowed, not daring even to speak. If he didn’t speak people laughed, if he spoke people laughed. If he did something people laughed, if he didn’t do anything people laughed.
Then one day a mystic came to the village. That same night the fool fell at the mystic’s feet and said, “Give me some blessing. Is my whole life to be spent shrinking and cowering like this? Will I die an idiot? Is there no way that I can become a little more intelligent?”
The mystic said, “There is a way. Just follow this sutra: Condemn everything.”
He said, “What will happen through this condemning?”
The mystic said, “Do it for seven days, then come to me again.”
The fool asked, “But what am I supposed to do in order to condemn?
The mystic said, “To whatever anyone says, make a negative statement. For instance, if someone says, ‘Look how beautiful the sunrise is,’ you say, ‘What’s so beautiful about it? Prove it. Where is the beauty? What beauty? It comes out everyday, it has been coming out for billions of years. It is a globe of fire - what is beautiful about it?’
“If someone says, ‘Look at Jesus’ words; they are so lovely,’ - you immediately jump on him saying, ‘What’s so lovely about them? What’s so special about them? What’s so new in them? The same thing has always been said, it is just repetition, it is stale, borrowed.’
“Just negate everything. You are looking at a beautiful woman and someone says, ‘What a beautiful woman.’ You say, ‘What of it? So what if her nose is a little long? So what if her skin is so fair? Lepers are fair too. What beauty? Prove it.’
“Demand proof from everyone and remember to always remain in negation. Put them in the positive, you remain in the negative. Then come to me after seven days.”
After seven days the idiot came, but he did not come alone as many had become his disciples. He was walking ahead of them. They had hung garlands of flowers around his neck. A band was playing. He said to the mystic, “The device worked. The whole village is forced to be silent. Wherever I go people bow their heads. The news has spread among the people that I am a great genius, that no one can defeat me. Now what should I do?”
The mystic said, “Now don’t do anything, just remain with this. If you want to save your genius never go into the positive. If someone speaks of God, then immediately bring in atheism. Whatever is said, always make a negative statement. Then no one will be able to defeat you because it is very difficult to disprove a negative statement, and to prove a positive statement is very difficult.”
Great intelligence is needed to affirm God; a very subtle sensitivity is needed. A very alert state of the heart is needed, a purified state of consciousness is needed, some light is needed within. But to deny God nothing is needed. Nothing is essential to deny God. This is why people in the world always condemn.