The Fool Who Thought He Was God

FOOL cover panel

A mysterious package discovered behind a wall in an abandoned building recounts the strange tale of twin brothers reunited after years apart.  A school teacher’s quiet life is suddenly upended when he discovers his brother Sebastian, who thinks he is God, has had himself committed to a mental institution in Bangor Maine, close to where he himself has been living for years.  He records his visits with his long lost twin and the conversations that leave him increasingly baffled, inspired, and finally uncertain about the thin line between sanity and madness.

     The Fool Who Thought He Was God

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From the book:

… I made a tape recording as well as this written record of my weekly visits. I didn’t want to stir Sebastian up because he could become very upset if anyone doubted him and didn’t believe that he was truly God. So I would ask him questions and he would answer them, the stupidest to the most profound, almost as if he had direct access to the Source, God himself. Sometimes I even believed that he was not completely mad but the sanest man I had ever known — he was so believable and imparted such wisdom to me during those many visits. Writing this, I have been questioning whether it is Sebastian or myself and the rest of us who are really insane….

 . . . . .

. . . I am your brother. Don’t you recognize me?

No I don’t. I don’t know you, but I love you as a brother all the same.

You are my twin brother, we have been best friends all our lives. I can’t believe you don’t recognize me Sebastian.

You may call me whatever you like. However, my name is not Sebastian, I have no name. I am in fact forever un-namable, and yet people call me by many names: God, the Divine, Source, True Nature, True Self, Cosmic Consciousness, Universal Consciousness and many others.

So what should I call you?

Whatever you are comfortable with, whatever you like. It really doesn’t matter to me what you call me. . . . .

. . . . .

. . . But you said that I was perfect and whole!

You are! You are perfect and whole, and yet deluded and confused. If you would just accept that you are deluded and confused, everything would be OK, but you don’t and so you suffer. It’s very simple but you make it complicated. When you admit that you are ignorant, then you are wise. When you admit that you are confused, then you are clear. The deluded think they are enlightened, the enlightened know they are deluded. The unwise think they are wise, the wise know they are unwise. The foolish think they are clever, the clever know they are but fools. The insane believe they are sane, the sane realize they are mad. The sinner thinks he is a saint, a saint knows he is but a sinner. It is the foolish who judge everyone else and believe they themselves are perfect. The awakened know that no matter how much they try they will never be perfect. That’s just the way it is.. . . .

. . . . .

. . . Walking up the hospital stairs I run into Jim again. “How’s it going with your brother?” he asks me. I tell him I am beginning to ponder real questions to ask Sebastian as if he really is speaking as the Source, or channeling it. I don’t know what to think. He says, “You’re going mad too, maybe it runs in the family.” I decide to ignore this possibility and just to go for it. . . .

. . . . .

. . . What you are saying makes absolutely no sense to me, and yet somehow it affects me deeply. Earlier I felt moved to tears, and again I do now, and I don’t know what to make of it. I feel emotional about it yet I don’t understand it.

That is just the way it should be. You are hearing Me with your heart and soul and not your brain. You listen with your mind, you are hearing with your heart. As I have often said, you cannot grasp what I am sharing with you with your head, it is too small. Open your heart and listen and you will hear Me. Your mind is limiting you. Just be and remain open and flexible and you can truly hear Me. Listen with your whole body, not just with your brain. . . .

 

 

11 Responses to The Fool Who Thought He Was God

  1. Koshen says:

    What a great creative way to bridge the gap of the duality the mind aspires us to believe and live. Looking forward to read the rest even though it will be banal, simple, and definitely imperfect.
    Carry on madman carry on.
    Much love in this.
    Koshen

  2. andrzej says:

    The line between sanity and madness thin enough to promise interesting lecture.
    I’m buying second copy for my twin brother.

  3. Dear Genpo Roshi.
    You hit the nail hard on the head, driving it deeply into the wood without splitting it.
    With respect.
    Martin Craanen

  4. Roshi – Thank you for writing this book. As a student who lives far away and doesn’t spend enough time with you, I’m grateful to have the lessons of this book in my home. I’m working on a PhD in Wisdom and you remind me that nothing could be more deluded. It tickles.

  5. Kennin, da mad, unwise, infinitely insane barbarian! says:

    Hey Genpo:
    So,
    When yo arrive…
    Give the Chairman yo “no-name”…

    Give the Doorman yo sword…

    The Butler yo hat-n-coat…

    Yo know the drill…
    All been before!

    All Good Fortune Gassho,

    P.S. He is watching yo close!

  6. Jerry Patchen says:

    Carl Jung said, “Show me a sane man and I’ll cure him.”

  7. Shikha says:

    I am super excited to read this. I mean that. Super excited to read it.

  8. Tom Rather says:

    What a delicious find. Can hardly wait to read it all.

  9. Rick says:

    Fantastic book! Loved it! A great read and so many lovely life lessons in it! Just wish I could stay ‘insane’ more often and not be such a wonderfully ‘clever and knowledgeable’ person 😉

  10. Eric Atkins says:

    Thanks again Genpo. It’s wonderful. Well done my friend. lov-e-

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