When I look through my Facebook homepage and see all the funny, smart status updates my friends make, I sometimes feel a bit intimidated. I can’t come up with this great stuff on a daily basis. All I can do is share statuses and maybe make a brief comment or two. Sometimes I’ll post a quotation or something; I just can’t find all that personal info to share. I don’t think I’ll ever be able to mention that I’m going out for sushi or I’m rolling up quarters to take to the bank. I guess I’m very limited on
Facebook and the other social media sites I frequent. I put out whatever personal stuff I feel on these blog posts and on my website – perhaps especially in books I write.
That’s just the Path I’m on.
Most people have heard about this concept of a Path through life. It is often mentioned that there are 3 aspects to it: find the Path, know the Path and walk the Path. Less frequently, you might hear about other aspects of the Path: first you come to understand that a Path actually exists; then you seek out different Paths until you find the one that resonates with you; then you learn about and explore the Path – get to know it; then you walk the Path and make the journey part of your life; and eventually, after rigorous effort, you BECOME the PATH and others follow your footsteps.
I suppose the Path I’m on is kind of unique – at least I’m not familiar with many people on it. I’ve certainly had many, many teachers – what I call teachers of the moment – but there is no one that has carved out a full Path for me to follow. I seem to exist in something like a tropical rainforest or jungle.
I suspect that others have gone before me; that somewhere in this primordial forest there might be a lost city or some ancient temple or at least a road leading out of the roughage. But if such a thing still remains it appears to be long covered over with vegetation. It seems that I am tramping through the vast underbrush alone; hacking away at the rough country like a machete; revealing, slowly, some sort of long forgotten trail that might have been used in ancient days.
Like a machete I open up a narrow road that can be travelled by some intrepid souls. Alone, I carve out this unique Path, unconcerned about who might follow me, seeking always for the way out of the jungle and moving to what I hope is the open field of Enlightenment.
Perhaps some will follow me now. And perhaps it will not be till many years after I am gone that some will find the walkway made with this machete and use it to travel out of the dark, overgrown jungle and into the Light at the edge of the forest and beyond.
The machete does not make a smooth and clean road way. Other tools and temperaments are needed to pave the ground and build up the rest stops needed by weary travellers – to clear away the debris of obstacles and impediments to the journey. Other tools are needed to supply markers and maps and guideposts for those seekers of spiritual adventure. The machete hacks out only the roughest of paths, a trail for those who long for the Light but are not afraid to venture through dark and lonely terrain.
It’s fun to post pithy status updates on Facebook and connect with people in a jovial, whimsical manner and a machete does have a razor sharp edge that can be used sometimes for the subtle dissection of reality. But mostly it is a tool that hacks and chops at the wild, unwanted weeds and foliage and leaves just enough of a walkway for those explorers desperate enough to brave passage through an untamed landscape.