- Kailash Kronicle 6
- Reflection on the last 10 weeks of my life – what’s changed since becoming a Kailash resident?
- Connecting the dots looking back, before stepping into Kailash as a Resident Volunteer
- Coming to Kailash for a Retreat Part 2: Surely I couldn’t be ‘fixed’ that easily?
- Kailash Kronicle 5
A meandering journey through the essence of Kailash
In year 9 I can vividly remember freezing in an English exam, petrified, unable to write, unable to find anything intelligent to say. Beaten by my own anxiety, I turned in an apology note instead of an assignment, praying for my English teachers forgiveness, sealing my embarrassment with a promise to do better, to make something of myself and to learn to write.
I learned later that year the importance of structuring a narrative, of having ideas supported by sentences and paragraphs, an opening that introduced the major themes and a conclusion that wrapped things up nicely.
Fast forward 20 years and here I am, still partially that naïve boy in an English exam, panicking at the launch of business, with no idea of how to do business right. That’s a lie, I do have some semblance of what not to do, I just have a massive resistance to the methodology commonplace in todays world of micro blogging, feeding out consumable content on addictive means (facey/insta) and a general disregard for the profit based models that make up the majority of the market.
But rather than turn in an apology or a promise to do better, I offer myself, and you my dear patron, an immediate resolution to my 20 year gripe.
Fuck structure. Fuck the plan. Fuck knowing where you are going before the journey begins. Fuck the 5 year vision. Fuck soullessly meandering along a trajectory of anticipated outcomes, of milestones and safeguards and moments you think you’ll know you have made it.
I’m here, now, raw, real. I wear my heart on one sleeve and my shit on the other and I’m writing the essay live, in real time by letting go. By surrendering all I ever knew. By tapping into the place inside of myself where the thoughts come without effort, the jokes slide out with ease, the kisses flow and the adventure is a goddamn adventure, a mystery, an improv play and not based on a lustful yearning for security and comfort and material ease.
It’s the last day of earth and I’m screaming the shit I’ve literally been dying to say. Kailash is a vehicle, a place, a space, a home, a refuge, a playground and a prison. A labour of love and all I have left to give. A masterpiece in action, a canvas painting itself.
No sense is given, here its being made.
I’m confused. So very, very confused. The fact of existence being, the fact that you sit somewhere, and that I’m realising more and more that you indeed sit nowhere at all except inside of this lonesome author or the imagination of self, the fact that the game has gotten so weird, where we have forgotten the downright absolute absurdity of the situation, floating through space, surfing a blue orb on the waves of our destiny through the cosmos… the fact anyone can have a conversation that isn’t based on; holy fucking shit this journey is insane… the fact we can have any semblance of sanity inside the madhouse… the confusion has me and it has set in.
And what? And what? And what does this have to do with a 14 year old boy afraid of turning in some work? A fearful blue blazer and grey short wearing boy, hung by the neck, a tie, afraid to try? Wishing to die? For what? Approval? Likes? Grades? Where was the celebration of being in that moment? Where was the cherishing that I could think in language at all, and have the fine motor co-ordination to write? Why didn’t the day start of with a collective look into each others eyes and a smile of knowing, that in you and in me, sits the most mysterious phenomena ever encountered. EVER. Unqualified, with no credentials, no learning, nothing supporting your right to be what you are. Nothing giving you the authority to look, and know you are looking, other than your God given eyes. Where was the sense of joy? In the mystery? In what we are? The humility to give space to the not knowing, for the absent to be acknowledged.
So this journey begins, rather, finds itself back at an eternal centre, back in that place that feels more like home than the short stone fence and humble ¼ acre block I grew up on. More home than a Sunday dinner with the family, than the uniform that was pulled on to fight for 13 years.
A home that is at the same time, nowhere at all. A home that I find, again and again and again, in different locations, often on the move, travelling with nothing else to do other than to know that I’m on a journey. The journey.
Kailash is an invitation for you to come and share your home with me, I’m sure as hell offering you mine. What is it for us to play in a space of homeliness? My home is sometimes a bit of a mess and I often need a hand helping me tidy up, or working on a project or going on an adventure. What is home to you? What brings you into that state? That luscious, soft, breast like space. Where are you when you are held by the cosmic mother? What is it like for you to be held by Her? What thoughts come? What sensations arise? What magic unfolds?
This, my dear friends, is an experiment. A high risk experiment that paradoxically cannot fail. Not only the results are unknown, but so is the hypothesis. The kid who never learned to plan, to get a structure and flesh out a story is still here. But changed. He’s shaken the desire to control through a daily practice of Surrender, of letting go of the plan, of looking into Her eyes and trusting that She has the reins, that the twisted causal creature, the beast who kicked this game off is indeed the one answerable to the plan, and not I.
So I write what comes, and I do as I’m told, I beg and pray that she guide me, that my action merge with her will. I had a lucid dream once where in order to fly, I had to let go of every part of resistance I had. Mental resistance. Thoughts, ideas. Gone. As the world around me moved, the flying had come naturally, with no imposition or effort. Here I ask, no, I pray, can we fly together? Can we live in trust and in love and let go? Can we surrender everything we ever thought the game was about, and see where we fly, to let Her guide us.
Yes the pragmatics. Yes the job. Yes the kids. Yes the mortgage. I’m not suggesting you abandon anything in your outer existence, the world out there is the world out there. I’m saying, if you feel called, come here and learn what it is for you to fly. To find the thing you need to release to make the world come back inside of you, for you to feel the sense of awe in the mystery.
I have no formula. That school kid was never destined to have one or rely on one. I have some magic tricks I picked up along the way. Fuck knows how they work. They are magic to me too. But, according to some near and dear, and in the essence of experimenting in my own life, I can see they do work. My hunch is they work because I’ve been put on my ass so many times now, by the Boss of it all, that I’m resigned to give Him his due, and not claim one ounce of responsibility.
Maybe this is called giving space for the magic to happen. The pimpled 14 year old wanted the safety of a plan, the sure knowing that if he stuck to the formula, that the results would ensue. Now, I look at the action manifested in my life and I gladly buy a property on spec, hoping that I, and others will one day find utility in it.
15 months have gone by since the move to the Grampians, every plan I tried to write fell flat, left me with less energy than when I started, more frustrated and yearning more and more for the structure I was never destined to have. So today I divorce myself from the notion that a plan is what I want. I relegate it to the space of helping me get things done, not of calling the shots.
The master becomes the slave.
We are in an adventure my dearest, you and me, locked in a romance of meaning, entwined in a love you haven’t realised yet. Or maybe you have? Maybe we are dancing already and it’s only the mind playing catch ups, learning the moves in retrospect.
Two lovers meet, in love, and swear that they touch inside themselves the eternal. But how could they have ever been apart? In knowing this state, the union of being, they realise they were never NOT in love. I say reclaim who you are and stop pretending, remember your role in the tango and play your part, dance with life. These moves do not come from a school or a church or a teacher or a plan, but spring forth spontaneously a la this grandiose creation. When our best theory of scientific origin is that the cosmos sprang forth in a spontaneous expansion from nothing, why not ponder the remembrance of a dance you were never taught?!
Who knows really, only you have the power and awareness to surrender what you need. Not me. Not her. Not no-one. Only you. As Michelangelo liberated all from the statue that wasn’t the David, revealing a form hidden inside the potential, I invite you to get carving with me. What can we uncover together in life, in a space conducive to a rising tide of awareness? You can help me and others carve too. None of us have a bloody clue what the next chunk that needs to be chiselled off is.
We are but walking mirrors for each other, and with an internal gaze, your Soul will guide you. What calls for your attention will manifest when you are ready, and not before, I suppose and hope. That’s how it seems to me at least.
I waited till the fire got hot enough. I frequently visualise myself on a funeral pyre at Pashupatinath temple in Nepal, by the sacred Ganges, my flesh being scorched from my bones, life remaining though, heat no enemy of mine, matter dissolving into energy, each molecule finding it’s own sense of home.
Friends, family, lovers, enemies and strangers, I’m on fire and I need you. There is something big happening and the game is about to get a bit strange. Noah built his ark before the flood, I’m building mine in the relationships I cherish and have with each and every one of you. Built on a chassis of love and held together with trust, we have the opportunity to forge something formidable should the universe throw us for a loop. Which it will. She is like that. I am no doomsayer or pessimist or conspiracy theorist, just a guy who has thrown himself all in and is being led to share Himself. And what I see, is that when the time is right, the amplification gets turned up, not before we are proto-ready, the flood comes to save the drought.
I seek not your approval, patronage, love, help or pity. If I can serve you, in the highest way I can, if I can offer you anything at all, it’s a place to stay and spend some time looking into the eyes of the mystery. Tears will be shed and laughter had, solitary moments and group journeys. I don’t expect it to grow overnight, but taking the 300 year old Redgums dotted around the property as the wise guides they are, where a fire who burns hot enough is required to open their seeds… Me, this humble, sometimes weary, sometimes a bit surly and serious traveller, has cracked wide open. There is fertile land here, and a loving environment, a beautiful and cosy lodge to stay in, a yurt to practice being in the body in, and a tipi to go on deep journey within. And a puppy.
The autumn rains release life, a sprout pokes above the soil and says “hi!”