The transformation from India to home was surreal as I dropped out of the sky into a downy ocean of soft purring love. Here I swam in the warmth, tired and happy as dreams of home became reality. Now the sun shines and the crisp autumn breezes threaten to blow away all the warmth of India. I grab a sweater and wonder, where to from here?
It’s taken a week for words to well up and the experiences of life at home to boil over onto paper. In India the blog took on a life of its own, the blog wrote me. Each day I was over whelmed with stimulation, sites and sounds that attracted and repelled at the same time. It was a relief and a joy to write and it helped me to process everything and feel connected. So now what? Surrounded by the ease and familiarity of home, I can only report on the mundane activities of comfortable mountain life. As the blur of travel lifts I search for my path and purpose. I want a reason to continue writing.
Yesterday was spent at the dentist repairing the physical damage of India. In the capable hands of my friend and doctor I was lulled to sleep as he worked and I revisited Meister Eckhart in my dreams. Awake with the lessons of everyday life I felt gratitude, here I was in America, with the resources and means to comfortably replace a portion of my lower jaw and move on with the business of living. I recalled the toothless vulture of Ajanta and the many crooked and painful smiles I received on my trip and I wondered about the fairness of life. Would I, too, be a vulture in that situation?
I was hiking today in peaceful solitude when I crested a hill and noticed a woman nearby in the woods. She held a pen and appeared to be writing or carving into an already scarred aspen. Shocked, I stared and she turned and glanced at me. She was an older woman, not an angry deranged teen out for graffiti-revenge on life. I shot her a long stare then moved down the path and watched as I debated the merit of engaging her about her unseemly environmental behavior. As Prashant had advised so long ago in India, I noticed my breath and heart-rate, they were calm and I pondered asking her to explain to me what motivates a person to write on a tree? I felt like a child, seriously full of wonder about something I couldn’t understand. I watched as she moved away slowly, paused, then turned and took a picture of the tree with her message. I decided to continue on, moved by the words of Meister Eckhart who spoke in my ear about the path of detachment, and dying to the illusions that imprison us, and I wondered, Am I unable to see the tree through my own forest of right and wrong?
And then it hit me: Life is the inspiration! When I write I distill life’s lessons for myself, I dig beneath the tedious activities and unearth the gems of awakening. Learning, as writer and scholar James Finley puts it, “To open our mind and heart to a profound experience of God’s oneness with us in the intimate details of our everyday lives. I love studying and thinking about life’s mysteries, and I love how yoga keeps me comfortable in my own skin so that I can explore from different angles with confidence. I’ll continue to write about yoga and life and if you continue to read and respond, maybe together we’ll shed some light on our crazy little lives here on Earth.
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