Saturday, December 2, 2017

Inhabiting Light

In the interstitial membrane between externally driven activity and internal necessity, I find myself feeling like a new immigrant. Tears come to my eyes in spontaneous fellow feeling for all beings – from the lowliest insect to the most privileged human. All of us are here at the whim of karma, in a maelstrom of events that feels out of control.

I'm not assigning blame. Karma is not a system of punishment, it’s just a neutral system of cause and effect. So probably I shouldn’t say “whim” or even karma. Is it atavistic to speak of God? Or should I just point to the plethora of spirits and god beings that populate all the unseen worlds around us?

Whether or not we label this “all” as God or not, the fact is, we are not the decision-makers ultimately. Not to say that we don’t alter each moment of our existence by our consciousness. But I don’t feel a sense of ownership about the ultimate destination of my being, even if I am the driver. And every time I consider an action, I'm aware of all those beings around me.

This is not to say that our actions can't be meaningful, or that they aren't vital. In this time - perhaps more than ever - we need to act from the levels of our deepest understanding. But what I'm talking about here is the place in between those moments of action.

So, as I said, I find myself in this interstitial membrane. And previously I was always in the hub of activity, driven by plans, goals, and endless lists. And now meditation isn’t just one of those goals. It’s a framework or maybe a vehicle. The “yana” of Vajrayana, Mahayana, etc., becomes quite relatable.

In previous years, this blog has mostly been my poetry, a form of expression well suited to a life whose energy is devoted mainly to working for a living. Now, for some reason, prose feels more appropriate. Not that I won’t jot down something symbolic next time I am alone in a darkened restaurant with background music and a glass of wine. Like so many writers, alcohol loosens my tongue.

But for today, I feel like a child just learning to walk. And an old image comes to mind, of being in a dark tunnel and heading for a faint light in the distance. Except that now the light is everywhere.