After their first date, Mary refused to see George anymore. Not to be put off so easily, George began writing to her. He was so infatuated that he sent a special delivery letter twice a day for sixty-three consecutive days. On the sixty-fourth day, the campaign produced results: Mary ran off with the mail man.
Twelve years are going to produce some results, Geeta – right?
My biggest fear and limitation, as far as I can discover, is the fear of being left alone. I feel that this always had, and still has, a strong influence on my life and my relationships. Besides feeling this fear and letting it be there – which I obviously haven’t done enough – is there any other way out of it? Beloved Master, would you like to talk about this fear of being left, and alone?
The fear of being left alone is something natural, because everybody is born in a family, so from the very beginning one is always within a certain group, a certain crowd, a certain religion. Always there are people surrounding you. So being amongst people becomes almost natural to us, although it is only a habit.
It is not natural; as far as nature is concerned, everybody is born alone. It does not matter that one is born in a family. For nine months in the mother’s womb you are alone. After you are born, whenever you close your eyes you will find your aloneness. Even in the marketplace, just close your eyes and you will find yourself alone.
Aloneness is your very nature, and the crowd is just a habit. But the habit has become so strong and you have become so unaware of your nature that there is always a fear that if everybody leaves you, what are you going to do? In fact, you don’t know who you are if everybody leaves you. It is their opinions which create an identity for you.
Somebody says to you, “You are so beautiful.” He is giving you a certain identity. Somebody says, “You are so intelligent,” somebody says, “You are so joyful,” somebody says, “You are so loving.” These are all opinions. They may have been expressed only as a form of etiquette, they may not mean anything, but you collect these opinions. And this is what your personality is.
Your personality depends on what people say about you. That’s why everybody is so much concerned about his reputation, his name, his prestige. And society exploits this situation very cleverly. It keeps everybody trembling, afraid, because society has the power to take away your respectability, your honor. You are a slave, unknowingly, because you depend on society for your identity. Without that identity you don’t know who you are. That is the ultimate fear of being left alone, that you will not know who you are.
I have told you a Sufi story….