Tuesday, May 26, 2009

You once were bathed in brightness, and found pleasure in the simplest things

Socrates: "You're making progress - right on schedule."

Dan Millman: "Delighted to hear it... But on schedule to where?"

Socrates: "To the gate! To unreasonable happiness! To the one and only goal you've ever had but didn't know it. And now it's time to lose your mind and come to your senses once again."

"Again?" - I asked.

"Oh, yes. You once were bathed in brightness, and found pleasure in the simplest things." With that, he took my head in his hands and sent me back to my infancy.

My eyes wide open. They gazed intently at shapes and colors beneath my hands as I crawl on the tiled floor. I touched a rug and it touched me back. Everything is bright and alive. I grasp a spoon in one tiny hand and bang it against a cup. The clinking noise delighted my ears. I yell with power! Then I loop up to see a skirt, billowing above me. I'm lifted up, and make cooling sounds. Bathed in my mother's scent, my body relaxes into hers, and I'm filled with bliss.

Some time later. Cool air touches my face as I crawl in a garden. Colorful flowers tower around me, and I'm surrounded by new smells. I tear one and bit it; my mouth is filled with a bitter message. I spit it out.

My mother comes. I hold out my hand to show her a wiggly black thing that tickles hand. She reaches down and knocks it away. "Nasty spider!" she says. Then she holds a soft thing to my face; it talks to my nose. "Rose" she says, then makes the same noise again, "Rose." I look up at her, then around me, and drift again into the world of scented colors.

That place - my grandfather's garden - it was like the Garden of Eden.

"Yes, it was the Garden of Eden. Every infant lives in a bright Garden where everything is sensed directly, without the veil of thought - free of beliefs, interpretation, and judgment.

"You 'fell' from grace when you began thinking, about - when you became a namer and a knower. It's not just Adam and Eve, you see, it's all of us. The birth of the mind is the death of the senses - it's not that we eat an apple and get a little sexy!"

"I wish I could go back," I sighed. "It was so bright, so clear, so beautiful."

"What you enjoyed as a child can be yours again. Jesus of Nazareth, one of the Great Peaceful Warriors, once said that you must become like child to enter the Kingdom of Heaven."

.. You now see everything through a veil of associations about things, projected over a direct, simple awareness. You've 'seen it all before'; it's like watching a movie for the twentieth time. You see only memories of things, so you become bored, trapped in the mind. This is why you have to 'lose your mind' before you can come to your senses.

.. Refine your senses a little more every day; stretch them, as you would in the gym. Finally, your awareness will pierce deeply into your body and into the world. Then you'll think less and feel more. That way you'll enjoy even the simplest thing in life - no longer addicted to achievement or expensive entertainments.

- from Way of the Peaceful Warrior by Dan Millman. A classic tale, told with heart and humor, speaks to the peaceful warrior in each of us and this is a book that moves one to laughter and tears and moments of illumination.

# Related:
. Peaceful Warrior, the Movie
. Dan Millman's Blog
. Dan Millman on Integral Naked part1, part2
. Peaceful Warrior Sequel: The Way According to Socrates

"There are no ordinary moments"
- Way of the Peaceful Warrior Pin It Now!