Not long ago I lost a friend. One minute he was visiting and laughing with friends, the next he was gone. For good. Dead.
The first thought that went through my mind was the last time I saw him. I was in such a hurry. I wanted to go somewhere. Looking back, wherever I went wasn’t all that important. Otherwise I would remember it.
Folks jokingly quip that it’s the small things in life that matter. Wait till you lose something or someone you love and the stark reality of that statement becomes glaringly obvious.
Looking back, perhaps I should have lingered. Perhaps I should have stopped and breathed. Accepted that cup of tea and sat down under the pungent smelling plants with its blooming flowers. Perhaps I should have sat and listened and laughed and watched as people and time went by.
Perhaps I should have asked questions and reacted with surprise. Looked into the book in which he had inscribed something. Perhaps, just perhaps, I should have lingered a while longer and gazed at the stars as I listened to that old, croaky radio of his. And now he is gone. And with him the chance of fulfilling all those perhaps’.
The Restless Generation.
We are a busy lot. There are a million attractions clamoring for our attention. And that attention keeps shrinking each dawning day. We feel restless even when we are supposed to be relaxing. We feel we are missing out on something. Something important maybe happening and we are missing all of it. We want the next thing even before we are done with the present one. And on, and on.
Everything pales in the face of death. The finality of it makes it obvious. It stops you in your tracks; to reflect however much you don’t want to. And reflect have I in the last few months.
He always seemed happy. He was always smiling in that odd way gurus and masters smile. The way that says, “I know the secret of life but I ain’t telling you.” And perhaps in one master stroke he did impart that lesson in an unforgettable way.
Dance to Every Note in Life.
Am in the middle of reading Robert M. Pirsig’s – Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance. That thought keeps popping up time and again. To slow down and take the time to savor it all. To savor the moment, every bit of it, to immerse myself in the experiences. To give undivided attention to whatever or whoever am with or doing.
We erroneously think that life is made up of the big events, because that’s what we tend to remember. In reality, the bulk of life is the spaces in between those big life events and how we live them. Your wedding will be a day or two in your lifetime, living it is what happens the rest of your marriage.
There is nowhere you are supposed to be apart from where you are now, at this moment, doing what you are doing. So…
Stop. Breathe. Immerse. Experience