Man who visits a psychologist
He sat on the podium, white beard nearly touching his crossed legs. His shoulders were kept warm by a knitted white shawl, carefully tossed in a decorative way. It was difficult to see his eyes. His bushy eyebrows hid his gaze from the packed audience. The tone of his voice echoed his still posture in a soft, yet firm way. He was allowing the people to put questions to him while he listened in a quiet, intense, focused manner.
A man stood up to speak to him. “I don’t know where to start”, he said. “I am going through a divorce at the moment. I have fallen in love with someone else. I feel so bad about my behaviour. My doctor has recommended that I see a psychologist. I wondered what your opinion was about psychological treatment. Do you think it will benefit me? Or, should I rather turn to my spiritual practices and pray and meditate more?” he asked, in all sincerity.
“Brother, please explain to me, what is a psychologist? What is this?” His tone was inquiring and perplexed. One had to listen carefully to grasp the words spoken in his Punjab accent.
“Well, a psychologist is like a doctor. You make an appointment to see him”, the man answered. “Then what do you do when you go to see him?” the soft voice asked again.
“Well, you talk to him. He listens, you talk and he offers you advice or direction to understand your problems better”, came the reply.
“And then, Brother, do you have to pay to talk to this person?” he asked pointedly.
“Yes! You do have to pay for the time you have spent with this person”, the standing man explained.
“You do not buy anything from him, or get anything to take home? You pay to talk to this man?” he asked, leaning forward.
“Yes! You pay to talk to him.”