The Balance Sheet

Freedom from bondage. Bondage of ego that is.

Downward mobility. As detailed by Henri Nouwen in The Selfless Way of Christ. How does a high paid engineer follow Christ really? I am and can continue to let go of power, prestige and infamy. I do my job and try to help others.

I did something nice for some colleagues this week. They did not reciprocate. My ego noticed this and started in on a mental tear. I realize I am hopeless in the area of doing something without selfishness. Every time I do something good, my ego whips out the balance sheet to see if I profited.

Self centered in the extreme. Driven by a hundred forms of fear. Each day is a new beginning and I seem to arrive at each morning sober. I have a daily reprieve.

Last evening, I listened to a sober lady tell her story. She has 41 years of sobriety. In a few short months. I\’ll have 30 years. Sobriety in AA, conscious contact with a power greater than myself, is the best thing. A sober life is an amazing thing.

I am at an odd place in life. Or at least different for me. My outer world is stable. It is a chore to go to work each day, but overall, I have a very nice job and I like it. Everything is paid for. On days when I maintain my humility, I can be happy.

So this gives me time and space to continue to probe spirituality; to wonder about self transcendence.

Laps.

It is now hot on the Gulf Coast. Today I did my laps under the trees. I thought about how I started ultra running and doing laps because of the Sri Chinmoy 3,100 mile Self Transcendence race. I thought about my short monastic life. I thought about the vehemence of my first ten post-monastery years. I was not able to pray today. No mantra was transfixed in my mind. But eventually, yes I did pray. I thought a question mark into the universe.

No answer came. But the trail was mostly in a forest. It clouded up a bit towards 2 pm. I felt good. Jog walk jog walk jog walk….. think….. muse about the past. Trying to put the pieces together.

A monastic contemplative goes into the silence. Can I reach silence and still go to work 5 days  week? I have to.

Laps are utterly meaningless; except for the silence.

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