Growing up, my mother used to tell me, “when you have kids, you’ll understand.”
I didn’t like that answer. I still don’t. But I think I do understand more even though I don’t have kids.
It’s feels really hard sometimes. Living this monastic life. Trying to build something new within a great deal of uncertainty and change. Cultivating this community and culture. Key word here being “feels”. Because, for the most part it’s a good life.
The challenge is that we run towards our shadows. We continually work to face the truths within ourselves and with each other that we deeply don’t want to face. To live fully present is to be fully alive without anywhere to hide.
It’s funny. People don’t say it more often. But meditation retreats are obviously the happiest and best experience for a lot of people. Yet, there’s something deeply disturbing at the thought of doing it continuously. The actual retreat itself can be hellish for most of us at times.
And in those challenging moments, facing my angels and demons, letting go of who I think I am, viscerally working through the repressed parts of myself, shedding all the stable reference points, many many times I don’t want to continue, don’t think I can continue. Don’t think I should continue.
Lately, more and more, I think of children. What sin has these children committed? What sin has the Earth committed?
And who will protect them? Who will guide them? Who will help them?
If everyone is satisfied with their patch of mixed truth and lies to live a good-enough, comfortable-enough life, who will guide the kids of the future?
Somehow, that helps thinking of the kids.
Out of love for the innocent, I’ll do whatever it takes or at least try to.