We met in Carmel. Carmel is also the place where my high school friend lives. It was my intention to meet with him but he caught a last minute flight to Maui. He will take some time off to be with his wife and mourn the loss of their son. So I find myself in his hometown, in his favorite bar, talking about him, shedding a few tears and having a beer with his friends without him being there. Strangely enough it felt good for both parties. I liked to hear the stories that I heard from his American friends. It made me realize he had made really good friends here and that everybody cares. Similarly I got the feeling that the American friends of the couple appreciated that an old friend of their buddy showed up in their pub.
Everybody wants to be a beautiful, amazing and inspiring human being, nobody wants to burn. When we find ourselves in the oven and have no choice we clench our eyes and fists and tighten our muscles, preparing for the worst and hoping it will pass. But maybe we can try to trust that the Universe is not against us and open our eyes and listen. I know it is close to impossible to see light in our deepest despair and it is counter-intuitive to relax in the midst of pain. But try to find the even the tiniest bit of light and breathe into that. This light will lead us to forgiveness. And that forgiveness will open us up to our humanity like nothing else.
The thinking mind tends to dominate our lives. Of course the ‘I that wants to understand’ is not somebody else then the ‘I that just is’. But the part of us that want to understand is just a part; it is not the whole picture. The thinking mind can take us through endless loops of similar thought patterns. It can numb us, make us feel bitter or self-righteous to name a few. When we for some reason find (through some sort of experience) or accept (because it makes sense) that the thinking mind is not boss we can start exploring outside of the thinking mind. We can experience first-hand that there are many different mind-states. I might have felt a handful, the Dalai Lama might be aware of dozens or even hundreds states of mind, I assume. As far as I know it, it feels like an endless and limitless path. It feels like a continuous unfolding, which means that what feels true is also travelling. The truth is always under way.
I am in the USA! On Monday I arrived in L.A. The client I am doing the retreat with picked me up from the airport. We walked around Venice Beach, had some food and went to the movies later. I was very tired from the flight but couldn’t really afford too give in to my jetlag so I made an effort to stay up till a ‘normal’ bed time. I made it in the sense that I am going to bed and waking up at normal times but I still feel a bit weird. I left Sydney in the afternoon of Monday the 22nd and 14 hours later I arrived on Monday morning 10 am but I felt like Tuesday morning 5 am. Confusing.