I should have tried to get back to sleep but 4 am was the appointed hour.
A very good morning to you wherever you are and whatever you're doing.
Today's quote is:
“Treat every moment as your last. It is not preparation for something else.”
― Shunryu Suzuki, Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind: Informal Talks on Zen Meditation and Practice
And it's no accident, honest.
It's what it is, namely, this day is not preparation for something else.
It is It.
The whole thing — good, bad or meh!
Of course, we want it always to be this way and no other way, but to the ego or in a dualistic world, even nirvana would end up being like everything else — i.e. dull.
I know, I'm on my soapbox again, but it's only when we examine the unexamined portion of our lives that we start to wonder why it is, despite extensive seeking, we can't find a place of equanimity?
Guess what: it's not out there.
You can have as much wealth, money, fame and, even, good looks, and life still sucks. Well at least did for the Buddha and those people who adorn all those fashionable magazines. It might outwardly look bloody perfect but there's a curse of misery hanging heavy in the air. (I generalise but you get my point.)
As a slight segue, the happiest people I've ever known were my late grandparents, Lorna and Peter. They were poor as church mice but what they had in spades that very few people these days appear to have is: love. And I don't mean the relational variety. Nope, this was unconditional, infinite love. But again, I'm pretty certain that even if they'd been economically prosperous, it would still have been the same.
Back to the main gig.
Why do I keep banging on about this non-dual message?
Not that my story is worth remarking on — it's boring — but I now see through pristine glasses that for the first 43 years of my life I thrashed away trying either to get something or fix another broken part of my life, only to come up short.
To be clear, the apogee that I was so intent on fighting for wasn't happiness per se but a place where I didn't have to try so bloody hard and could, at last, relax. My nirvana (if you can call it that) would have been to surround myself with enough toys, wealth and freedom to no longer have to show up and pretend (as was my way) that a life of success was our birthright.
I was one uptight dude. I still remember the managing partner of one of the law firms I worked for calling me a "headbanger". He was right. No one was ever going to outwork, outsmart or outmanoeuvre me; but, hell, I was a miserable SOB.
It was only when I took a serious whack to the head that I woke up to a very different paradigm:
"emptiness is form
form is emptiness."
Who would have thought it?
A little koan (in effect) would knock me off my tiny little perch and make me question my whole beinghood.
But what about you?
Where do you think you'll find, if indeed you're interested in looking, the secret sauce that you're told will manifest the perfect life?
To be clear, not everyone is interested in pursuing anything more than a quiet life, but my sense, still, is that most people would give their eye teeth to find everlasting happiness.
And that's why non-duality is so freaking awesome (that's a will.i.am expression — haha) because without doing anything more than inviting a few simple questions pertaining to who and what you are or what's happening in the moment, you'll apprehend (I hope) that what you're looking for you already are.
When you strip away the thinking there is just this:
"The condition into which all things arise and subside is not itself impermanent or limited. Being without limitation, this overarching condition is without boundaries, borders or restrictions; it is without beginning or ending: infinite, in space; eternal, in time. Thus, without relationship to time or space, this ground of being is formless. Encompassing all which is in existence, there is not anything outside of it; not anything comparable to it; not anything by which its identity can be defined. Because of its “not-twoness,” it is said to be the essence of nonduality." — Robert Wolfe, Abiding in Nondual Awareness: exploring the further implications of living nonduality
I accept that very few people will be drawn to or wish to consider something so different to the usual array of offerings — and that's fine — but those few souls who are exhausted by the prospect of going another 10 rounds to master a new technique, process or system might just be ready for a fresh look at life — the only thing we've got, right!
OK, that's enough of that.
It's 5.10 am and I've got to try and pack the car in the next hour. If you recall, my wife and I are off to Haddenham this afternoon to see my brother before tomorrow morning driving into central London to drop off my eldest daughter's clobber. The youngest daughter isn't coming with us — she's off to stay with her boyfriend — and we have to get the dog, Alfie, to my sister-in-law's place as my wife is worried that he won't let her in the house.
Oh, and then there's the small thing called work. The boss is back, and no doubt he'll want to tell me all about his trip and how well the team is doing 🙃.
I'm not sure I'll get a chance to post anything until late tomorrow, and then it might be very short. (I can hear the sigh of relief 😂.)
Until then, have a great day.
... which would be very much appreciated and welcome 🙏.