Saturday, August 28, 2010

Just Another Desert Rainbow

You can leave anytime you want. There is nothing holding you here but you. Seems like you have convinced yourself otherwise, but I assure you: if there is a door -- and I am not convinced there is -- then it is an always-open door in an ever-empty room with no walls.

I took the above photograph a couple of days ago, while I was sitting out in the middle of nowhere. A very great poet -- Gary Snyder to be exact, while I was sitting in the middle of somewhere -- once explained to me that there is a danger in taking photographs like this. He said that in time, you will come to remember only the photograph, and forget the actual event.

The reasons why we stay the way we stay are like the poet's dangerous pictures.

We think that fulfillment of our desires are so very important. We hang on to our beautiful clothes, and our cars, our homes, and our families -- and sure enough, in time, we remember only the photograph, and forget the actual event.

Maybe that is why the pain stays bearable as long as it does.

We keep submerging it in the picture of an old dream.

The years burn like a bookmaker's notes. We change sizes, and the clothes don't fit. The buttons fall off, and the seams split. The moths eat them, and the rats gnaw our shoes. The cars break down, and wind up in the weeds, out in back of the garage. The houses are like stage sets: they change for every scene, and you can put your hand through the walls. The lovers, spouses, and children... well, pick up a cell phone from ten years ago,  or an old address book, and see how many numbers are still in service.

Causes and conditions are unreliable companions. They whisper, across your shoulder, but when you turn around to see them, they are gone. In the day, in the desert, you swim in mirages, while at night the bushes come alive, and dance.

The replacement for life we live instead of living our lives is just another desert rainbow.

Always a little out of reach.

That, right there, ought to tell you something.

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1 reader comments:

Anonymous said...

Hi Tenpa, I just wanted to thank you for posting the Lotus Garden visit and dzogchen retreat in Va. I will be on my way Tuesday. I can feel the immense wisdom blessing coming through already. What an incredible blessing for all of us. Again thank you for posting this a few weeks ago so I could know about it and make plans to attend.