For two decades before his death, he became a study in deepening humility, self-deprecating humor, compassion and generosity, a slow softening process. I don’t know if it was deliberate or if some inexorable conviction took hold of him and he simply released and rode its momentum all the way into shore.
If there is an object of practice, it is to stop trying to be something, to unwrap the most subtle layers, progressively unmasking the operation and direction of the CEO, the games, identities, directives and assumed capacities of ego, until there is nothing left but living in the stream, free of all bardos. Non-meditation.
A quiet heart is a still place within a storm. It is where the voices of ego, judgement, instinctive self-preservation and grasping may penetrate, but to which an aggressive response is not automatic. A quiet heart is not immune to desire or greed, not dissociated from attachment, anger or sadness, confusion or grasping.
It seems perfectly logical to say we will all be confronted with a series of moments tightening the grip of death in which we will have to decide what we believe and what our conscious role shall be in attending and adapting to a process that is both in and out of our hands, that is entirely real and entirely illusory.
Being in an increasingly delicate and uncertain state for the past year for multiple reasons, it’s time to reassemble the elements of one’s known and unknown universe, the pieces scattered over a troubled and troubling landscape, to rediscover–or recover–one’s place in relationship to the ones close at hand and the ones far from view.
Reconciliation carries an implication of justice, a balancing of accounts. In this case it’s an honest discovery of others’ suffering while realizing our own mortality, complicity and limitations.
I’ve been in a rage since before the financial collapse of 2008. Well, actually, a good deal longer than that.
I could be pushing myself into ‘activism,’ reaching out to interact in a larger process or to articulate a view of what is important, communicating with others and formulating strategies, a timeline of objectives. But all of that is falling away.
Embodiment is being fully connected, fundamentally related to each other and to the natural world. We come home to the sacred dimension of life, to our Greater Self, to a dynamic equilibrium of inner mechanical, cognitive and sensory forces interacting with memory and feeling. We name such experience ‘Wholeness.’
The story of this body is written in an ever-refreshing pixilated environment, an ocean of shifting light, multitudes of biochemical gates constantly opening and closing. There is no permanent story.