I have settled in this morning to catch up on some correspondence. It is amazing how much of one's time is spent planning while traveling. Unfortunately, you cannot just walk in any door and have a seat or a room. No problem really it's just the details. Sometimes those details are a bit overwhelming though. For those of you that don't know Dana was not allowed to leave New York as planned a couple days back. She was supposed to leave New York on December 23rd. Having completed everything necessary to leave and sleeping very little she arrived at the airport only to be told she could not board the plane becuase there was a tear in her passport. Wow, welcome to patienceville in a hurry, eh? Five months we haven't seen each other, and the latest obstruction has been a tear in a piece of paper. I do not want to go off on what I think about the security the world over. Although, I think there is a lot of wasted efforts. Yes, people hate imperialists nations then you have to spend the rest of your money defending yourself. Try putting more money into education. If even a fraction of what is being spent on current "Defense" measures was converted to education, see what the results could be. I dare anybody give it a shot. See if there is anything happening at your local public schools. See how you might be able to make a difference. Try to change the meaning of orange alert to an enchroaching finger painter!
With all that being said, I have anxiously been awaiting Dana's arrival. The anticipation has been great. The other night I even could not sleep, and for those of you who know me, this is odd. I woke up at midnight after 90 minutes sleep and I eventually resigned myself to watching the Packers vs. Raiders. Granted it turned out to be an amazing performance for Brett Favre who's father passed away less than 24 hours prior. What to do. I didn't want to be awake, but the excitement of it all was too much. Dana is coming to town; she has resolved her torn passport, and she's somewhere over the continental US as I type. Soon she'll be crossing the Pacific headed to Bangkok by way of Hong Kong. I breath, I type, I listen to new music, I anticipate.
I wish the absolute best of this holiday season for all of you, albeit Channukah, Christmas, Kwansa, and a happy New Year.
While going through my messages this morning I came across another story that Josh sent me. Enjoy:
An ambitious student comes to see his zen master. As soon as he sits down, the teacher asks, "What is the basic human problem?".
The student ponders this then answers: "We're not awake."
The teacher says, "Yes, but those are just words. You're just thinking." He rings the bell and sends the student away.
Perturbed, the student is determined to figure it out. A week later he returns.
The teacher says, "Well have you figured out the basic human problem?"
The student replies, "Yes, the basic human problem is that we think too much. We are identified with our thinking. We believe our thoughts."
The teacher answers "Again, you are just thinking. you have to see the basic human problem in yourself." Again, the student is dismissed.
Determined to solve the problem, he pulls out all the books, and reads everything he can on the subject. When he returns to the teacher he is almost strutting he is so sure he has the answer now.
Seeing the state he is in, the teacher asks the question. And the student replies, "There is no problem!"
The teacher stares at him and says "Then what are you doing here?" In that moment the student deflates, shoulders drop, face turns red, he feels totally humiliated.
Peering at him, the teacher asks: "What are you experiencing right now?"
Without looking up the student replies: I feel like crawling in a hole."
The teacher explains: "IF YOU CAN FULLY EXPERIENCE THIS FEELING, THEN YOU'LL UNDERSTAND THE BASIC HUMAN PROBLEM."