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Chapter 16: Life Is on the Razor’s Edge

So he shouted, “Nasruddin, move the bag towards the right,” hoping that he was going to move it to the left according to the old experience. But by this time Nasruddin had also figured it out. He said, “Okay,” and he moved the bag towards the right and the bag fell into the river!

The father said, “What happened, are you no longer disobedient?”

He said, “Now I will decide each time whether to be obedient or not. I will not have a fixed philosophy but I will move according to the situation, because you have been cunning with me, you have been cheating me. I’m your son and still you have been cheating me! You have been ordering me in such a way that I should disobey. From today onwards be alert - I may obey, I may disobey. From today I am not going to be predictable, controllable, in your hands anymore.”

The nonconformist is always in the hands of the society and the establishment. The establishment just has to be a little more clever and cunning, and then he can use the nonconformist very easily, without any difficulty.

But the establishment can never use the rebel because he is not reacting to the establishment. He has a vision of the future, of a new man, of a new humanity. He is working to create that dream, to transform it into reality. If he is against the society, he is against it because the society is a hindrance to his dream.

His focus is not on the establishment; his focus is on an unknown future, a potential possibility. He acts out of his freedom, out of his vision, out of his dream. His consciousness decides which way to go.

That is the difference between reaction and action: reaction is always determined by your enemy. Perhaps you have never thought about it - that in reaction the enemy is in a dominating position, he is deciding your action. What you are going to do, the enemy can decide.

The rebel is simply beyond conceivability to the old establishment, the rotten society and the dead humanity; because it cannot have even a fragmentary view of the great dream that the rebel is carrying in his soul. All his actions are coming out of that dream. They go against the society, but that is just a coincidence. He is not against the society, he is for a new man. His approach is positive, not negative.

He is not angry against the old society, he is full of pity and compassion. He knows how much the old man has suffered, how much and how long he has lived in misery. How can he be angry? He cannot even complain.

He is creating the new world so that this misery and this suffering and this ugly society disappears and man can live more naturally, more beautifully, more lovingly, more peacefully, enjoying all the riches that existence makes available, all the gifts of life which are invaluable.

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