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existentialists had no solution to the dilemma of existence that they so eloquently
pointed out. The atheist existentialists generally took refuge in Communism. The theistic
ones returned to the church with an irrational leap of faith. But the problem of our
inherent nothingness was not something that they had any real method to solve. The example
of the existentialists showed me that the intellect by itself, however rational or
cunning, could not arrive at any ultimate truth. A higher consciousness was required for
that. The intellect gets caught in endless doubts and ends in nihilism or agnosticism.
Excessive thinking weakens the emotions and saps the will. It didnt take me
long to realize that the existentialists were not going anywhere. The German existential
philosopher Heidegger, however, connected me with the concept of Being, which seemed to be
the greatest insight in existentialism, though generally I found his philosophy to be too
complex and verbose. With the idea of Pure Being I felt on a firm ground and knew that a
greater truth and peace enveloped the universe, but that the intellect was probably not
the right vehicle to understand it.
Once in high school I openly challenged a priest who
was giving a talk at the school auditorium criticizing the existentialists. He used the
ignorance of his audience to plant negative ideas about these thinkers so that the
students would not fall under their influence. I realized that we should speak out on
these issues and not simply be silent or such distortions would go unchallenged. My
remarks created a lot of commotion and the priest was shaken. I learned that speaking out
can have a strong impact on people.