Serenely let us move to distant places. And let no sentiments of home detain us. The Cosmic Spirit seeks not to restrain us, but lifts us stage by stage to wider spaces. Hermann Hesse, Stages
I have weirdly been in a bit of a drought in terms of writing lately. I hate to think it might be because … life is so nice right now. At least in my heart and in my immediate world. There is a lot going on, a lot changing in this new season. I am studying some new things — energy management — expanding and deepening my understandings and abilities in terms of … who we are.
I’ve drawn this conclusion: we are cosmic matter, trapped for a time inside a human condition. We have infinite capabilities, particularly when it comes to love, though I’m hesitant to use the word love as I think it too often gets screwed up with our limited romantic ideas. Flowers and roses and all that mucky muck. Not that there’s anything wrong with those things, but the concept of love is much deeper and more meaningful and purposeful than a gesture or two that convey a fleeting sentiment.
I am beginning to tap into an understanding that we are both a speck in terms time and place and expansive in our possibilities and capabilities.
To be in this condition — human form — means that we get to do some great things: eat, glide down a mountain on snow, swim in the oceans. We get to hold hands and make babies, create art and write stories. Our bodies and minds are quite useful. We can also do terrible things. Yesterday I was driving in evening traffic and needed to make a lane change. I waited too long, but I did what I was supposed to do: put on my blinker, waited for the car in the lane where I needed to go to make room and shifted over. For some reason the driver of that car didn’t like that move. Most likely there were a host of other things happening in his life that caused him to slow down when he passed me on the other side, shouting at me that THERE IS A LITTLE THING CALLED A BLINKER … USE IT NEXT TIME BITCH!
We can be horrible, us humans, and not just with the words we choose. We point guns at each other and shoot, we have laid waste to vast tracks of this world and we are suffering in body and mind as a result. It’s becoming harder and harder to raise new generations of decent humans in the midst of this morass. I’m not sure why the default mode for some is darkness, harm, selfishness, greed, it just is. I think we are all born with a beautiful heart and for some the path is just too hard, too pockmarked with trauma and weirdness and very few of us have the skills or the desire to deal with that effectively. To choose the higher road, the better way is just too hard.
So this is what we have: life, us, choices.
Here in our little corner, in our little moment, we are packing our boxes and moving from one place to another, from one endeavor to another. We are circling the wagons and family is coming home to help with the changes — Sam from Tahoe, Kristin from Alaska. Yay family! I love you all so goddamned freaking much. Nate is weighing in from Bozeman with good news of opportunities in his engineering work … “I can’t wait to tell Pa about this,” he told me last night with so much joy; Pa, my dad, having spent his working days as an engineer, too. The lines we draw down through the generations …
We are praying like hell for our beloved Bruce. We are all watching the storms with curiosity and horror and sorrow… can I go? I want so much to go, but not this week. Not to fret, though, as there are fresh storms brewing as we speak.
This I know, too, this is my understanding of this life: with this human condition, this temporary residence we take in body and in this world, comes responsibility and to that end there are four words strung together that matter above all others, all else: how can I help?
I believe with all of my heart, with every speck of dust of my being, with every cell that is still activated in my brain that this is why we are here, to ask that question and then to respond with action. We don’t have to live enormous lives of fame or fortune, glory or infamy. We don’t have to undo all the terrible wrongs wrought by terrible people making terrible choices. We don’t have to do anything at all that lasts beyond our brief moment here. But while we are here we are tasked, there is an imperative that comes with birth, to leave this place better than we found it.
That can mean sitting with a lonely person in a nursing home, cleaning up trash beside the road, adopting a dog that has been cast off, holding the hand of someone whose child has died, cooking some food for someone who can’t, sitting quietly with a friend who is having a hard time. The best thing that you have in this life is you. You are the treasure, you are already the gold. Don’t hoard it, don’t save it for a rainy day, you’re not going to be here forever.
Give. It. Away. Your golden, beautiful, radiant sparkling cosmic dust self. Spread, shine, alight, relieve. Relieve just a little of the suffering of this place before you go. I will thank you heartily for that one day when I see you on the other side.