February 10, 2014
There is nothing you have to do.
Nowhere you have to go.
No one you have to be.
The sun rises in the morning whether you want it to or not.
The sun sets in the evening no matter how you feel about it.
Sometimes it rains. Your opinion on the matter is not of relevance.
Sometimes some one dies. Every milli-second some one dies. Your grief or rage do not produce a resurrection.
Your car fails to start. Engines do not respond to obscenities.
You have discovered your soul-mate. The universe yawns.
The President of the United States does something particularly thoughtless, stupid and unwise. The bad state of your digestion does not change the President’s mind.
After hours or years of effort you win the big race or big promotion. People still starve to death throughout the world.
The wind veers to blow directly into your face and your progress is slowed. Fortunately you are already wherever you are.
You met someone important to you and know that you made a terrific impression. Too bad. Now you will have to live up to that impression for the rest of your life.
You met someone important to you and know that you made a horrible impression. Good. You can try something different next time.
You feel that no one pays any attention to you. You don’t know how lucky you are. If only people would stop paying attention, we could let go and be whoever we feel at any moment like being. But when we notice someone paying attention then we have to narrow our act to perform for that someone. The role we might really have wanted to play gets stuffed in the costume trunk.
The earth is round. No matter how straight a line we take sooner or later we end up not far from where we started.
A straight line is the best way to travel between two points, and the worst way to travel through life.
Nothing lasts. Thank the Buddha, nothing lasts. All life is cursed and blessed by this simple truth. Nothing lasts. The paradox humans struggle to close their eyes to is that if anything were eternal it would be unimportant. Only change is interesting.
All we do is build mole hills that we imagine are mountains. The first strong wind will blow away all that we thought was eternal.
Life is all change. The man I am at the beginning of this sentence has changed forever before I type the period to end it.
And we thank God it is so. Nothing lasts. Celebrate change because change is life.
But humans fight change and thus fight life. Most human misery lies in the effort to preserve something—someone’s love, wealth, a new sofa, a child’s charm, a talent that is fading. Let them go, let them go. Every effort to preserve something blocks the arrival of something new that might enrich life.
We dream of a perfect life and thus miss the perfection of life.