Sunday, 14 December 2008


I turned forty last month. Without wanting to be prescriptive, I was aware that, however short my time so far may seem, I may be past half way. I may not, but either way, the insight was deep.

My father died earlier this year at the age of sixty eight. He had been looking unwell, like he had aged suddenly, then he spent a couple of months in hospital and was gone.

There are illnesses that can take us out, quickly and without warning. Being alive is an act of universal grace. Being with my dad as he died, and turning forty have brought this awareness closer. Surrendering to death relives me of tension and fear and lets the graciousness of life reveal itself.

What moved me more, perhaps, than my own birthday was being with close friends for theirs. I could see them clearer, in a way, than I could myself. Here they were, now forty, after us being fifteen and ten and twenty one and thirty together. This is what they looked like, this is what they had done and seen, this is who they had in their lives. This was how I felt about them and about being alive.

This morning I am tired. I had a wonderful evening of dinner and togetherness and just four hours sleep. I do not have excess energy, I am relaxed and still. It feels, in a way, like getting older.

My urge to push is waning. My outer self is increasingly transparent. Gently, it is fading, which is quite magnificent. I am not resisting, I am enjoying it. My inner self is easier to see. The part of me I came to life to discover, the true me, is maturing.

Real power is not in fighting and force, it is in presence. The outer self struggles for strength on the superficial level but as that softens, the real self can shine through.

As my form progresses through the journey of life, it is finding my formlessness and the bliss of being.

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