Friday, June 4, 2010

The Game

Following a terribly interesting and inspiring conversation late last night (or early this morning, however you like it), I spontaneously remembered this passage, which mirrors a lot of the fundamentals of said conversation.

"The state in which a given tantrika finds himself, even within society, is exactly this state of joy, of marveling, of jubilation. All his experience is like a spring that is continually regenerating itself and encouraging him to come to know the limitless in the most banal experiences. Often we imagine that the mystic life involves intense moments of encounters with the divine. For tantrikas, the mystic life is drinking a glass of water, putting one's feet in the river, sitting at the foot of a tree or on the terrace of a cafe', listening to the night, waiting for the bus, looking at the stars, walking, eating. Becoming an ordinary person again.

"Within the framework of society, it means living very normally. Tantric masters keep working, at the same time teaching a few disciples. Sometimes they have very simple jobs, because they are people from all walks of life: garbage men, butchers, civil servants, prostitutes, engineers. They find fulfillment in making sandals, cooking galettes, spinning pots, or selling lentils. It is thus truly possible to live this fulfillment in the most everyday reality." - Daniel Odier

We think too much. We all want to be rock stars. We want to be seen. Our hyper-individualism grabs us by our very suggestible brains and refuses to let go. We all get off on being a lot of "sound and fury, signifying nothing", sound and fury that, for the most part and despite our desperation, goes unnoticed by the majority. And if you're like me, you get so furious, so hurt, so irritated with the world, the world you're stuck in, the time that completely does not suit you. You just do not understand how so many people can not understand.

But time and again, someone a little wiser reminds you that, well, you are here. This IS the time you're upon. What are going to do about it? And you realize that the only person keeping you shackled and unhappy is YOU. By refusing to play the game. By forgetting that the only really important thing in this world is breathing another day; everything else can wait. By remembering simplicity and how it actually has everything to do with intelligence.

You can play the game and remain whatever you are and maintain the things you find essential. All the weirdness and beauty and existential oddness you love so much can only be helped by your willingness to play, to remember that it is just a game, to keep that secret smirk in your heart.

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