I want you to stop being subhuman and become 'yourself'. 'Yourself,' I say. Not the newspaper you read, not your vicious neighbor's opinion, but 'yourself.' I know, and you don't, what you really are deep down. Deep down, you are what a deer, your God, your poet, or your philosopher is. But you think you're a member of the VFW, your bowling club, or the Ku Klux Klan, and because you think so, you behave as you do. This too was told you long ago, by Heinrich Mann in Germany, by Upton Sinclair and John Dos Passos in the United States. But you recognized neither Mann nor Sinclair. You recognize only the heavyweight champion and Al Capone. If given your choice between a library and a fight, you'll undoubtedly go to the fight.
Love is the ultimate outlaw. It just won't adhere to any rules. The most any of us can do is to sign on as its accomplice. Instead of vowing to honor and obey, maybe we should swear to aid and abet. That would mean that security is out of the question. The words "make" and "stay" become inappropriate. My love for you has no strings attached. I love you for free.
What hurts me is the fact that in India, a good doctor is one whom you have to take an appointment with even before you fall sick. Else, you will die but not get treated. A good school is one that won't admit you even if you are in Lower Kindergarten. A good minister is one won't meet you till are some VIP. I want to change this in my lifetime by democratizing education and opportunities.
Now, what happens if you eliminate anything from the Bible that offends your sensibility and crosses your will? If you pick and choose what you want to believe and reject the rest, how will you ever have a God who can contradict you? You won't! You'll have ...A God, essentially, of your own making, and not a God with whom you can have a relationship and genuine interaction. Only if your God can say things that outrage you and make you struggle (as in a real friendship or marriage!) will you know that you have gotten hold of a real God and not a figment of your imagination. So an authoritative Bible is not the enemy of a personal relationship with God. It is the precondition for it.
I don't know," I said. "What else did you do for your first eighteen years?""Like I said," he said as I unlocked the car, "I'm not so sure that you should go by my example.""Why not?""Because I have my regrets," he said. "Also, I'm a guy. And guys do different stuff.""Like ride bikes?" I said."No," he replied. "Like have food fights. And break stuff. And set off firecrackers on people's front porches. And...""Girls can't set off firecrackers on people's front porches?""They can," he said... "But they're smart enough not to. That's the difference.
You did listen." He sat back, nodding his head. "Okay, then. Now tell me what you really thought.""I told you. It was interesting.""Interesting," he said, "is not a word.""Since when?""It's a placeholder. Something you use when you don't want to say something else." He leaned a little closer to me. "Look, if you're worried about my feelings, don't be. You can say whatever you want. I won't be offended.""I did. I liked it.""Tell the truth. Say something. Anything. Just spit it out.""I—" I began, then stopped myself. Maybe it was the fact that he was so clearly on to me. Or my sudden awareness of how rarely I was honest. Either way, I broke. "I… I didn't like it," I said.He slapped his leg. "I knew it! You know, for someone who lies a lot, you're not very good at it."This was a good thing. Or not? I wasn't sure. "I'm not a liar," I said."Right. You're nice," he said."What's wrong with nice?""Nothing. Except it usually involves not telling the truth," he replied. "Now. Tell me what you really thought.