“One day I will find the right words, and they will be simple.” ~ Jack Kerouac
It’s been a while since I’ve sat down to inhabit the blog realm of words. The last time was nearly a month ago when an epiphany of sorts landed in my lap and spurred a plan for leaving the worldly to step more firmly on the path of a retreatant, a yogi, someone hungry for a deeper practice of meditation and the insights that may await. Each week that has come and gone since that decision has solicited the same quandary: “What is calling me to write today?”
The answer has been an unsettling silence.
For most of my life that silence would clench my heart in a numbing vice of fear. Fear that the words would no longer be born, would no longer comfort me, would no longer sustain my need to be seen, to become some oxidized reflection of illusive brilliance. Now the hush of my writing brings with it a new discomfort, not that words have abandoned me, but that in the clearing of the stillness I can see the master is not the muse but rather the ego, the arrogant self, the I that wants to be read, to be praised, to breathe in the intoxication of becoming some one in this realm of insatiable longing.
When I allow this new awareness to settle from its murky stirrings there is a soft sense of lightness, familiar in its freedom to the slipping away of my carnal appetite. The hunger to write isn’t as ravenous as it once was, its urging not as compulsive. Allowing this space of quietude for words has opened in me a recalibration of purpose, of intention. Now when I write it is for clarity on the path of the Dhamma, thirsting for a way out, a way beyond the cell of barren illusions and seeking instead a universe of emptiness and peace.
Next week I will head off on retreat, away from blogs and websites, burnished phrases and gilded cleverness. With each refocused sighting of the self comes its slow and measured death until one day silence will be my only expression.
Or at least some part of I hopes so.
I lost my world, my fame, my mind
By Mevlana Jelaluddin Rumi
I lost my world, my fame, my mind —
The Sun appeared, and all the shadows ran.
I ran after them, but vanished as I ran —
Light ran after me and hunted me down.
The Way of Passion: A Celebration of Rumi, by Andrew Harvey, published by Tarcher, copyright 2000.
Writer’s Block by Elemento Zeca via Flickr Creative Commons