Sunday, 19 July 2009
I have just returned from a month in London and Paris, where I saw eight live concerts by some of my favourite and some of the greatest artists in living memory.
In London I also spent time with family, enjoyed a sweltering summer, cruised the best shops, and lived the high life.
In Paris, even more so. I stayed in super hotels, ate in superb restaurants, saw the sights, shopped, and was showered with gifts. There is no place like home, and now I am enjoying that.
Yet there is a ceiling to where all this worldly wonder can take you, and that ceiling isn’t very high. But you have to reach it to realise it.
I had a beautiful, growth-filled and blessed time travelling, and I am happy to be home, but I am feeling disillusioned. Somehow all the stuff out there doesn’t reach in here.
I can relish it but it cannot nourish me like I really need to be fed. So I am reaching deeper.
Disillusionment is a good thing! It is the end of illusion, a beginning. I am not hopeless, negative or pessimistic, I am relaxed, rich and happy, but I am seeing a distinction between two levels of living.
The first is the familiar where most of us subsist and struggle most of the time, essentially in emptiness. The second is our destiny.
The world can only take you so far. We are in it but not of it, so we can enjoy it but should not mistake ourselves for it. We are passing through. It is a waiting room, a preparation time for returning home, a way to know ourselves better.
Who we bring and who we leave with, or more precisely, who we really are, is who we are here to realise. What we have forgotten is what we are heading towards remembering.
The first level of existence is the one where we change. We are seeds then babies then children then young adults then older and older people. We gain and lose, live and die. We want pleasure and reject pain but have to settle for both or numbness.
The deeper level is the one where we watch. Our bodies were small and now they are different but something inside us has been consistent. Life goes up and life goes down yet part of us is unaffected. That is our home, who we really are, the truth.
One of the doorways into this truth is disillusionment. It can come through despair or wealth, or it can emerge as a gentle floating above all the noise, but it has an inevitability about it.
On one level there is the illusion and deeper down there is simple truth. To find the truth, we have to shift our emphasis from the dream out there to the life force in here.
When we find the truth, which we all carry, we have to follow it. As our roots grow, we bring new fruits into being, as the outer responds with great joy to the awakening of our inner.
When you begin to find yourself, the world opens up.