“All formations are transient; all formations are subject to suffering; all things are without an ego-entity.”
Once upon a time we were nothing. Then a spark ignited. And magic began. All was wonderful. Did we wish for this?
I imagine a world where everything is….. Not good, not bad, but just …is. We are all there together. We exist. If there was food, it would taste like white rice and have the texture of pudding. If there was a sky, it would be gray with no clouds. No touch to experience the tingling sensation a lover can produce with one lingering glance.
We are … content. Yet happiness, joy, and passion are flowing abundantly just outside our reach. We know it is there. We can taste it in the air. We want to experience, to feel it all. And so we make a pact. We grasp tightly to one another, our hands squeezing with fear, and we jump.
Something happens on the way to this world. Our hands release. We didn’t know we would be doing this alone. Where did everyone go? We scramble and become fearful until it all settles.
There you are. Can you feel this joy too? The warmth. It permeates my whole body. I begin to feel tired. What is this heaviness? My eyes must close…. Sleep.
Before I can even understand, a hunger comes over me. I hunger for sweetness on my tongue. I hunger for the closeness of another. I hunger for warmth. Where did it go? Where did everything go? I used to have everything I could possibly need.
As each moment passes, the only thing I can be assured of is that each moment will bring another surprise, another bout of change. I finally feed one hunger, only to find another. I find spices to ignite my belly, yet yearn for the kisses that would fill my empty heart. I have become disconnected and there are so many rules to get back to what I once had, the place I had become stale in, the place I don’t think I ever really wanted to begin with. I have no idea which is better or worse. I know I was dead before but I am dying a million deaths over and over now.
When the pain becomes unbearable, I lie down and die. I used to stomp my feet and scream. Just get mad, that will make you feel better. Hate them all. Hate everything. Its all their fault. The red would build with fire in my bones. They were supposed to come with me, protect me, guide me. Yet, I look out and see that they are the cause of all of my pain.
We came together. But we changed. I have no reasoning as to why the color pink would be so beautiful to me, yet you would prefer the blue. I have no idea why I would love the feel of bark as it grazes my hand, grass as it tickles my feet, or the sunshine on my face. I don’t know why I love a warm rain in the summer or dancing under the stars.
But I do. I know that in order to hear the violin cry its sorrow, someone must play. That in order to taste the sweetness of the berry, to feel the seeds roll on my tongue, it must die. I know that in order for me to feel the smooth skin of my lovers against mine, I must be touched. And in order to be touched by another, we must be separate. We cannot be together. We cannot be one in this realm.
We came here to experience, to love. And to do that, we need to know pain. We only know that sweets are sweet after we have tasted sour.
When the sour becomes too strong for me to bare, when the musician’s hands weary and the songs run out, when my lover craves the touch of another, I lie down and die again.
I have died a thousand times. I wish I could say it gets easier. But I still want to stomp and cry. Sometimes those friends of mine even stomp and cry with me for they too have experienced some of the bitterness we dose out to each other. We grab the ones closest to us, who share our pain, and we hold them tight. Until they too crave things we cannot provide. Or they forget that we are as fragile as they are and they kill our sweetness with an innocent taste.
When will this vicious cycle end? I can only guess it will end when we decide its not longer worth it. When the pain outweighs the joy. Until then, I will continue to die again and again. But I will be reborn. I will wake up in a moment and I will stand up off the floor. I will wipe the wetness from my face. I will stare up at the imaginary man in the sky, ask the questions again, and then I will smile. I will laugh at myself and sit with this pain until it is changed into joy. And someday, I might return to the nothingness I once was. I might even find that more joyful than anything I have ever experienced. Before the spark that ignited my soul.