The Deeper Meaning of Rabbi Nachman’s Parable About the Man Who Thought He Was a Chicken
One of the things that has always bothered me about pseudo religion is the ceremonies and artificial behaviors part of which too are the weird get-ups and de rigueur hair (or lack thereof) styles.
People who carry out these ceremonies in all solemnity and think that something terrible will happen to them if they do not perform the ceremony correctly do not understand that the natural flow of life is the sacrament and that one is not supposed to be performing weird ceremonies on the sidelines of life in addition to living life.
Wisely, in Judaism, women are exempt from most of the ceremonies. That gives us time to just be ourselves and watch the weirdness from the sidelines. Unfortunately, many Jewish women feel “left out” that they are not included in the ceremonies and take them on, not realizing they are being given a huge advantage to see the truth.
To think that one has to take time out from real life to perform some kind of weird and unrecognizable simulation of what we are supposed to be doing as a matter of course is obsessive compulsive disorder and dissociation of the most severe order.
If you were to come to my house one day and find me, in dead earnest, saying to you: I want to be like Doreen. I’m going to dress like Doreen. I’m going to act like Doreen. I’m going to talk like Doreen. I’m going to work really, really hard to become as much like Doreen as I can! – you’d think I flipped, and rightfully so.
If you then said to me gently: ‘But Doreen, dear, you are Doreen’, and I went ballistic and denied that I am Doreen saying: I can’t be Doreen! Not really! Doreen is one one I worship!; you’d be right to call an ambulance.
That is *precisely* what religious people trying to be Godlike are doing. And they are doing so en masse.
Rabbi Nachman told a parable of a man who went nuts and thought he was a chicken.
The story has it that his Rabbi took off his clothes too, climbed under the table and crowed, just like the man, to show him how ridiculous he was.
Seeing his Rabbi acting like that, the man snapped out of his delusion and said: I’m not a chicken. I’m a man!
Unfortunately, he stopped at that point, not getting the deeper point, and didn’t get to the point of saying: I’m not a man! I’m God!