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It is better to meet an author of spiritual writings on paper than to meet him in person. For in the first case you will always meet him at his best, whereas in the second case you might meet him at his worst. In the first, mind meets mind unhindered but, in the second, his body, his speech, or his mannerisms may offend you and thus prevent such an inward meeting. Thus there was a woman who for some years kept one of my books on a shelf of honour where it might be easily accessible and often read. But one fateful day we accidentally met each other on board a ship for the first time. A single glance was enough for her to make up her mind that she disliked my face, as it was enough to convince her henceforth that she disliked my philosophy! I hope that the next author she meets will be better looking so that he may fare better than I did. For I fear I have little to offer such seekers in the way of hair on the head and less in the way of tallness of the body. As for my features, Venus was too busy elsewhere to give any attention to them when they were formed! Thus a woman may reshape her world view if she is attracted by the shape of an exponent's ear or impressed by the grandeur of its advocate's physical height. I tremble for the guru whom Nature has adorned with a pair of bandy legs. No matter how impeccable his teaching may be, many will come but, being more repelled by his legs than attracted by his logic, few will remain!


-- Notebooks Category 12: Reflections > Chapter 6: The Profane and The Profound > # 22






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