Monday, April 16, 2012
Well You Go
and you work in the dharma
Then you stand up,
stand up and wipe, wipe the mirror clean
And she go steppin' out queen,
steppin' out, steppin' out, steppin' out, steppin' out
- Van Morrison, Steppin' Out Queen
* * *
You are making this more complicated than it needs to be. The mind expects grand, profound solutions to the existential drama that is a fucked life. But honestly, that's just your ego running ahead of you announcing your profundity. It is one of the things that keeps you fucked, my profound, deep-feeling friend. You can go a long time down that road. It is masochistically soothing to hurt all the time: at least you are feeling something and you can offer up that hurt, that suffering, that confusion to some belief you think is higher, grander, more profound than you.
That would be the drama Mr. Morrison is writing about.
It is dramatic to feel it all, to feel you can feel it all. It is feel-y. It is also feeble. The easiest path to follow is the one worn smooth with mea-culpas, self-blame and self-importance. None of this is honest. It is false suffering, useless, self-serving, ego-stroking suffering. "Hey, everybody, look at me! Look how much I feel!"
You feel me?
Like I said, you can camp out there for a long time, but sometimes it happens that you get sick of it, of your dis-honesty and you venture off that path. You decide it is time to get to work - on yourself, on living, on believing in something other than the hurt this world can put on you.
You enter the Law, the Universal Law that girds our phenomenological experience: Mr. Morrison's dharma. Call it religion, call it duty, call it teachings, call it ground-floor, call it anything you like. It doesn't matter. Dharma is and what you call it is meaningless to the dharma. But not to you. The dharma is where you live, where you breathe, where you build, pray, act. And when you enter it, you believe, you believe, you believe, you believe.
Spend the rest of your days working in the dharma and you will be happy, at peace, content to know your place, your work and you will rest in an easy bed. Promise. And here's the thing, you can't help but work in the dharma. Like I said, dharma is.
But sometimes it happens that your life is still fucked. Things are out of step, even just a bit, and it gnaws and troubles you. "What gives?," you think. What the fuck? Right?
Try this on: the Buddha said if you meet the Buddha on the road you must kill him.
You feel me?
It is up to you to learn how to live your life. Anything handed to you, will, by definition, be less than what you need. The missing element is your choice, your discernment, your surrender, your active participation in walking the hard road down.
So you stand up and wipe the mirror clean. And if you've been listening to me and Van, you go steppin' out, steppin' out, steppin' out, steppin' out, steppin' out, steppin' out.
* * *
You are here for a short time. You might as well make it a good time. What that looks like on you, only you can answer. And here's the news: that is the best news possible.
* * *