four billion worlds

“Donald,” I said when I got back to the field, “I have come to the conclusion that you just don’t live in this world.”

He looked at me startled from the top of his wing…”Of course not. Can you tell me one person who does?”

“What do you mean, can I tell you one person who does. Me! I live in this world!…Me and about four billion other people. It’s you who…”

“Oh God, Richard! You’re serious!…Here I had thought you had reached this major knowing -” He broke off and looked down on me in angry pity. “You’re sure of that. You live in the same world, do you, as…a stockbroker, shall we say? Your life has just been tumbled and changed, I presume, by the new SEC policy – mandatory review of portfolios with shareholder investment loss more than fifty percent? You live in the same world as a tournament chess player, do you? With the New York Open going on this week, Petrosian and Fischer and Browne in Manhattan for a half-million-dollar purse, what are you doing in a hayfield in Maitland, Ohio? You with your 1929 Fleet biplane landed on a farm field, with your major life priorities farmers’ permission, people who want ten-minute airplane rides, Kinner aircraft engine maintenance and mortal fear of hailstorms…how many people do you think live in your world? You say four billion people live in your world? Are you standing way down there on the ground and telling me that four billion people do not live in four billion separate worlds, are you going to put that across on me?” He panted from his fast talking.

– Illusions, The Adventures of a Reluctant Messiah. Richard Bach


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Keep me away from the wisdom which does not cry, the philosophy which does not laugh and the greatness which does not bow before children.
-Kahlil Gibran

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