A Letter to a Friend

I can relate very much to what you say about declining health and control of it. Sorry to hear about all those struggles. It sounds like an insightful step with your doctors. I guess you have to hear what they say and decide from there. How can they really know what is best for us. I am surprised to hear about you stepping back from involvement with your life teacher and that group. It seemed to be such a vital support for you. But as you suggest I also seem to be embracing, more than ever, the shift into living from an essence that I find fundamentally in solitude. Im not sure that I find it in any group or such.
Iris and I were quite sick on returning to Germany from Myanmar and haven’t yet fully recovered from that. I just feel myself getting older and I want to be allowed to do that rather than have to fight with it or adopt some conventional way of coping with it. There have been moments in Myanmar when I was sick where I realized the possibility that one day I will not be able able to go on and maybe it will arrive sooner rather than later. At one point I went on an expedition and was 200 kilometres away from Iris in the north of Myanmar by myself on the Chen State Rebel Front, hiking in the hills and rice paddies alone realizing that I could get sick or that something else could happen and that I might not make it back as I planned. At one point iris and I were told we could not get on a flight in the southern most part of Myanmar and that we had to go back to the border and through customs on the Thailand border. It was a stressful few hours and I was reacting in a habitual way but there was more of a settling into the possibility that my time here is completely limited but at least Im living fully. I might not like everything about life, in fact I don’t. I am so aware of the war and poverty and most of all how individuals and cultures attempt to cope in a way that is laced with ignorance, arrogance and vanity that perpetuates more abuse in Myanmar, Germany and most everywhere in the world.
I can relate to what you say about things unfolding in our male dominated world and as well feel that we would be much better off with more women in the role of leadership. Men just are not able to really realize how their egos are so limited. The male ego keeps repeating the same patterns and mistakes and perpetuating suffering over and over. Of course women are capable of this as well. I have a chance to observe women in the medical system here in Germany and they can be propelled by the same egos and confusing intentions, mixing up their own personal neediness for what is best for all. But women seem to be on the whole, inevitably more capable of transcending their own neediness and of an authentic concern and compassion for others. They are so much more close to something more authentic, creative and loving of our being.
As far as myself goes I seem to be waking up to more acceptance of where I am in the moment. Its not that I don’t have feelings about it but that I can see them more clearly and move beyond them. There is something of my ego that is not happy about wherever I may be. I know enough not to pay too much attention to it or to let the essence of it arise without being to attached to it. As you suggest it is something of my cultural male conditioning. These days I am able to operate and be in the world from a more fundamental place than that conditioning. There is something in this that is more accepting of difficulty. I see that part of that male conditioning involves a never ending search for security, comfort and control. Its not that I am rejecting these things but that I am more able to enter into difficulty and move through it. Im seeing more that these moments are inseparable from a joy in life. It is a different kind of joy and embracing of life that I have forgotten. The feelings of child like exploration, creativity and unfolding in a mystery are more common now than they have been in some time.

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