Slow Lesson

Dear J-

I suppose that if I see karma as being some kind of cosmic justice system I’ve missed the point; it’s not about smiting enemies, whether those I’ve held for long years or the yahoo who just cut me off on the freeway, it’s about knowing that good deeds are their own reward. Let the other guy be the jerk; I’m not the one who has to live with them or those actions, for the most part. I just tend to forget those calm words in the heat of the moment, but it’s not my job to enforce traffic laws, just to ensure that I drive safely and don’t put anyone into jeopardy, whether they’re riding in my car or not.

Some days I feel the fatalism more than others; perhaps, I think, perhaps it’s because I didn’t do this or that, maybe if I’d done things differently. It’s an excuse, like everything else. It’s more a question of taking responsibility again — the sooner I realize the truth behind serenity (accept the things I can not change, and the courage to change those I can) the sooner I can reject the rage that runs in a steady undercurrent and threatens to flood over me as a tsunami inundates the rational land.

Music or Gym 5068 -sm

Slowly, figgy’s teaching me what it takes; opportunities for patience, chances to turn from anger to answers and rewards, always rewards for the right way to handle it. I keep trying to remind myself that despite John Lennon’s reassurances, karma is not instant, neither effect nor reward. We may tote her around until our bones creak and our muscles fail; she may refuse to walk, or take a nap, or sit patiently for meals. It’s part of the compact we’ve made, and it’s the agreement we’ll keep; we may have miles and years to go, but we’ll remember everything, we’ll have to remember every lesson.

Mike

Advertisement

Tags: , , , , , , ,

2 Responses to “Slow Lesson”

  1. warwalker Says:

    David Foster Wallace’s commencement address at Kenyon college has some awesome passages about this stuff in it; I try to remember DFW’s words when I find myself getting angry about the people delaying me in the supermarket or cutting me off on the highway.

    It’s tough.

  2. dearJ Says:

    Does everyone have the awesome talent of finding the wrong lane, whether freeway or checkout, or is it just me? And am I the last person on the Internet to read that speech? Thanks for the tip — “The really important kind of freedom involves attention and awareness and discipline, and being able truly to care about other people and to sacrifice for them over and over in myriad petty, unsexy ways every day.” — all great stuff. Eleven years on in the so-called real-world with lessons and mantras to chant every day.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: