Photo Pierre Laroche

No drama

Pierre sent me a picture, telling me that I would be able to interpret it to its real value. I was touched by the attention. He was somewhat acknowledging what I had been able to bring to him since we met, a touch of transcendent poetry in which I often enjoy getting involved. If I was able to sow in him this dose of wonder, I am pleased about it.

But even without me, like all of us, he knows how to appreciate these silent moments of sunshine, surrounded by the fullness, even the certainty of the trees. Maybe an army of mosquitoes was after him when he took the picture. History does not say so.

The beauty of the world is fierce, raw, is interpreted as others do not hesitate to undress to catch their prey.

I don’t know if, at the moment, I’m capable of transcendence. Despite three days off, despite the sun, the excellent weather, I stay at home reading, sleeping, breathing, amazed by this body that surrounds me with its benevolent reality.

The days are of an elusive science and discipline, tangling towards sadness, melancholy, and quiet happiness. Nothing serious, no drama, actually. 

My reading of the moment, Already Free - Buddhism meets psychotherapy on the path of liberation, makes me think a lot. Its author, Bruce Tift, is a psychotherapist who navigates between the two paths of liberation. The first, the Western, tries to awaken and then dissolve the neuroses, the protective layers with which the ego wrapped itself in childhood and which immobilizes us during our adult life. The second, the Buddhist, seeks to de-dramatize these internal struggles, which often have nothing to do with the reality of the moment. In short, what was necessary for the early years of our lives, what was taught to us to protect us, should not always survive adolescence. There are ways to do better.

His work is more subtle than this unfortunate summary. Pierre’s picture could explain it differently. As children, we were protected, made to fear the wicked wolves and voracious adults. For us, the forest has remained a threat and, throughout our lives, armed with our experience and fears, we walk around, prisoners of anxiety that we have often not tried to reinterpret. The Western way is useful to understand this path, but it is not very useful to get rid of the real anxieties that will stick to our skin until our death.

The Buddhist approach comes at this moment to help, forcing us to recognize the tranquil splendor of our body, the robust architecture of our existence which is in a total relationship, in the present moment, with the rest of the universe.

This is what the sun reminds us of the trees and mosquitoes above. Our quest has no starting point or endpoint. We form a whole with existence, we are an original manifestation of it, each of us, or altogether without distinction. 

Walking in the forest in this way, without fear, well, if a little bit, bears do exist, after all, walking around, anyway, doesn’t put butter on our daily bread. True spirituality, I believe, just like Tift and Buddha, is not to deny reality, but to make it your temple and to blend into it, humble and happy.

Thank you, Pierre, for being a sun for me.