The Killer Buddha

"What do you see?" He asked.

"A Buddha?" She answered.

"Do you need my affirmation or do your eyes fail you? If I require your validation to be Buddha then I am clearly not the Buddha. If I tell you I have reached enlightenment possible to become the Buddha then I have clearly failed to touch even the tip of enlightenment. If I claim to be the Buddha then I am clearly not the Buddha. You cannot see that. Do you understand?"

She hesitated, not sure how to answer. No, she didn't get it, exactly. She wanted to say "yes" just to get beyond this and to the real questions on her list, but something kept her from doing that. She thought about it for a moment, rolled it around and tested each statement looking for the trick or hook. She knew that the answer he wanted was for her to clearly affirm that he was the Buddha. The psychologists said that this persona he affected was all a front used to feed his inflated sense of self and out of check ego; Appear to be this humble man free of self and in turn people would commend him, claim him as enlightened and do as he wished. It was a confidence game he must have played over and over on his victims.

"So some cosmic catch 22 rule applies here. If you say you are the Buddha then you can't be the Buddha. It's like people who claim to be humble can't possibly be humble or they wouldn't say anything about their humbleness." She smiled, sure she had provided the right answer.

"No." He said plainly. "I asked you what you see and you answer me with abstracts. You look for deeper meaning where there isn't any."

"What is that supposed to mean?" She asked, frustrated.

"If you were to ask me what I see, what answer would you expect to get back?" He asked her.

"I don't know. Karen... A reporter for the Daily Gazette... A spunky go-getter with 20 years of experience reporting on top local stories and hard hitting personal interest pieces?" Karen pondered.

"Are you asking me if that's how you should respond? Do you think that's what I see?" He asked.

This line was beginning to frustrate her. She didn't have much time left and wanted to get to the meat of the story. She wanted to understand why he had killed all those people, not what she saw or who she was. She knew who she was and for the most part she knew who he was too, she just wanted the details.

He interrupted her frustration. "The answer is 'a human being'. When I look across at you I see a human being. I would hope that when people look at me, they see a human being."