I can’t stop thinking of the man I had a conversation with the other day. The one I mentioned yesterday in my post Beyond the self.
Yesterday evening I was once again sitting on the balcony enjoying the cool evening and there he comes again. And again I notice he wants to start a conversation and eventually he does in his clumsy way. Do I want some Rum, he asks. This time I accept. We climb up the stairs, past the roof top and stand between the water tanks where Rishikesh by night shows off in her most beautiful lightning.
And he tells me his story.
The only thing I hear is his pain. He is aching, hurting, feeling stuck. Constantly repeating how miserable his life is, that it is not a life. Feeling stuck.
And we drink Rum.
This morning I had chai with a friend and I tell him about yesterday, about the pain that guy is carrying. My friend is a wise man and I wasn’t surprised when he pinpointed that guys problem by telling me this story.
There was a man who felt miserable. He felt the feeling didn’t let go of him. So he went to see a Baba, a Guru for help. He told the Guru of his problem and asked for help since he himself didn’t know what to do. The Guru took him for a walk in the woods. Suddenly he clung to a tree, holding it tight, loudly yelling; Please tree, let go of me. The man looks at the Guru with big eyes and says; But you are holding on to the tree. The tree is not holding on to you. The Guru lets go of the tree and says; Now you know what to do.
Looking back I realise that the times my life has been the hardest was when I was holding on to the hardship. Trying to figure out ways to fix it. Looking for the easy path. Trying to find happiness. Constantly failing.
The times I decided to let go and walk away, that was when things got easier. Life got easier.
My biggest challenge has always been to stay in the mode of awareness. Being aware has helped me knowing when it is time to let go, to accept the pain and then move on.
Letting go of the tree.