"As separate individuals, we live in separate cultures haunted by the vague memory of an intimacy that we all share. Let us, all together, chase the very horizon of existence, the edge of understanding, the point at which new sensations, emotions, thoughts and ideas begin to emerge… and let us bring this intimacy alive." ~Alex Mero
Time does not exist. We build it, we go through it, and we are its prisoners. Time exists only through the identification that we give it, that we ourselves have created with our own minds. This identification is the product of our memories, of our accumulated thoughts, and of what we perceive as the past. This past defines our fear and hopes, and consequently, our vision of the future. When our attention is totally and intensely in the present, we feel the reality of our soul, a reality that can only be felt with the heart, and never understood with the mind. A reality that is timeless.
Nathan knew that Songo had a construed view of death. The last time they had talked about it, Songo had only touched on the subject. Nathan thought now was an appropriate time to resume the talk.
“According to you, what do you think happens after our lives are over?” Nathan asked Songo.
Songo looked attentively at Nathan, guessing all the questions that the latter had in mind.
“That question is sufficiently important that we need to give it time to address it properly and thoroughly.” Songo said.
Songo pointed to a large tree at the top of a small hill and said: “Let’s go sit under that tree. Its shade will keep us cool.” Once there, Songo continued:
“What I’m going to tell you are the convictions of an old man based on an existence consecrated to prolonging life here on earth, and therefore delaying to later what comes after.”
“That’s only making me even more curious!” Nathan expressed.
“We can divide into three groups the people that need healing. In the first group, time has not yet decided to send death. To heal these people, knowledge and experience is sufficient.
“Time?” Nathan asked.
“It’s time that decides when death will dance?” Songo said.
“Death can dance?” Nathan asked intrigued.
“Yes, it does so when it comes to get someone.”
“Dancing? But certainly, death is not something to be joyful about!” Nathan stated. Continue reading →
“Tell him to arm himself with patience!”
Samir translated his words to Nathan:
“He said you need to be patient.”
“With whom, and in regards to what?” answered Nathan confused.
“Be patient with all our ignorance!” added the elderly man.
Simon and the other two companions were already gone from view and Samir, distrusting this situation, proposed to Nathan they go to their encounter. When they were about to leave, the other elderly man asked Samir to translate something else for Nathan:
“Tell him to be fearless and in this way he will show us the road to follow.”
Samir translated this to Nathan, adding that he wasn’t really sure how to interpret these words. They said goodbye to the two older men and walked away. Nathan remained silent. This incident troubled him just as much as the one that had happened in Bombay. Were these two men delivering an important message or were they to be distrusted? He asked himself. The conversation had equally perplexed Samir, and looking at Nathan with curiosity he asked:
“That second man was talking about showing the road to follow. What did he mean?”
“I don’t know any more than you.” replied Nathan. Samir was not satisfied with this answer, but insisted no further.
“What significance do we give “patience” here?” he asked Samir who was Pakistani.
“My uncle taught me that patience permits us to understand the faults of others!” he replied.
“My father taught me that the faults of others show us what roads not to follow!” replied Nathan in turn.
The concept of patience is introduced in this passage. As was posted in a much earlier entry: “Time is intrinsic to our world and governs all change. Patience teaches us to accept the time that accompanies all changes. The line of time and the line of space are strongly interrelated. There is always a place where time is ripe for the changes that we can bring about!” Life here is really all about timing, and patience is really a form of action. It allows us to accept things that cannot be changed, and to learn what needs to be learned before any changes can occur. So being patient is not being idle, doing nothing, but actually being active in learning, understanding and accepting.
─ What line must I recognize, concerning my impatience?
─ You will find balance between patience and impatience by standing still for a moment and you will learn to accept that all things must first have an end before the new can appear.
Takara’s words made Nathan think.
─ So my impatience is preventing me from accepting things?
─ Indeed, because of the impatience we miss the insight that not everything turns out as desired.
─ At such moment’s, time is indeed difficult to endure.
─ Time is intrinsic to our world and governs all change. Patience teaches us to accept the time that accompanies all changes. Continue reading →
─ In Thailand I learned how relative time can be. Takara, the woman with whom I stayed, told me that in the pure state no past and no future exists.
Koan took a sip of the tea and then emptied the remainder back into the teapot. He added sugar and stirred it before filling two tea glasses. Then he took his own glass without reacting to what Nathan had said. Thus Nathan was reminded that his host only spoke when asked a question.
─ How are the past and the future experienced within the pure state? Nathan asked.
─ Not so much, but both exist in the present.
─ Can you clarify?
─ When we’re able to connect the past to a clear vision in the future, we will become aware that each fully observed moment contains eternity. Continue reading →