He is saying, “I keep myself fettered with humanity because I am afraid. I have a great longing to transcend myself; I am afraid that the heights are calling me. Irresistible is their challenge, and to move towards those heights I cannot forget the abyss. To avoid the abyss, I cling to the status quo, to the state of things as they are. I create all kinds of relationships, all kinds of fetters, all kinds of bondages, just to keep myself engaged – so much occupied in the marketplace amongst the crowd of people that my dreams and my longings don’t pull me towards the heights. But…I am drawn up to the Superman.”
That my hand may not quite lose its belief in firmness: that is why I live blindly among men, as if I did not recognize them.
I live blindly among men, accepting their superstitions, accepting all their stupid ideas because not to accept them means you are falling out of the crowd. And I am afraid of being alone, because in my aloneness there is only one thing and that is an irresistible longing to reach to the sunlit peaks. This is what he is saying – the situation of every human being.
Why do you go on remaining part of a crowd? Why don’t you assert your individuality? Why do you go on playing pseudo roles, imposed by others, and not rebel against them? Why do you belong to so many organizations – religious, political, social – knowing that it is not going to help you in any way; it is not going to become the foundation of your growth. It will only lead you towards your grave…all your Rotary Clubs and all your Lions Clubs and all your political parties and all your religions.
You go on carrying your holy scriptures, but you never look in them. You are basically afraid that a doubt may arise – nobody reads the holy books.
I have heard about a door-to-door salesman who used to sell encyclopedias and dictionaries. One lady opened the door as he knocked, and he showed her the latest encyclopedia. She said, “But we have got one. You can see, there on the table, in the far corner of the room. We don’t need another.”
The man looked at the table and he said, “Lady, that is not an encyclopedia, it is a bible.” The woman could not believe it, that from so far away he had managed to see that it is a bible. She said, “On what grounds are you saying it is a bible, when I’m saying it is an encyclopedia?” He said, “It is not an encyclopedia, I can see the layer of dust on it. It can only be The Holy Bible.”
A small child in school was asked, “Have you ever looked in The Holy Bible?” He said, “Many times.” The teacher asked, “Can you tell me something that is in The Holy Bible?” He said, “Everything.”
The teacher was surprised. He said, “Everything?” The child said, “Everything. My mother keeps my father’s hairs in it.” The teacher said, “Is your father dead?” He said, “No, he is not dead, but his hair is gone. He has become bald, and that is just the old memory of when he used to be young. My sister keeps her boyfriend’s love letters in it, and to read them, I have to look in The Holy Bible.”