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It’s a Noisy World.

As one ages, one gets grumpier. Ear-plugs become a mandatory accessory. Shopping malls are to be avoided, and quiet walks in the forest become more and more digestible. In the Circus of Humanity, there are few acts that fill the house, that water the heart, that nourish the tender and frail Inner Plant of You.

I watch a coffee-shop client thru the steamy rainy November window. Cigarette smoke issues thoughtfully out of her mouth, between savored gulps of that bitter-sweet Americano. In the background, city buses and cars plough through the watery streets. I remember my years as a smoker, how cigarettes were my meditation, medication, relaxation. The Smoke of the Sacred Breath: what a pleasure to let go to the reassuring promise of nicotine and tar.

And here we are again on Life’s Highway: traffic, voices, memories, fears, illusions, the gravel of people rubbing shoulders, noticing and avoiding, finding and losing, weeping and laughing.

The Wheels That Grind.

This is a very intesting piece. Kabir speaks of this in one of his classic couplets. He mentions the wheels of life, like the grinding-stones that grind wheat into flour. And this happens to all of us, he points out. This incessant grinding. Until we are – once again – nothing. And, of couse, in the process of becoming nothing, we are “entertained”, distracted, pressured, bothered, packaged, un-packaged, informed, deformed, conformed and massaged by the endless microwaves of our hi-tech helper toys.

In the end of Kabir’s metaphor, he crowns it with the most amazing piece – the piece that most forget, many ignore, and vast majorities simply glaze over. He speaks of those fortunate kernels of wheat that end up at the pivot point, the central axis of the grinding wheel. They fall into a little groove there, a little sanctuary.

And they are the only ones who survive the Grinding Wheel.

The Grinding Wheel of Time.

What this means to me is practical, real, and beneficial. These are not mere words in a flaky new-age manuscript. Kabir is “old-age”, old-school, timeless-wisdom-101. He points out something that the true teachers have pointed out since time immemorial. He points out that there is a sanctuary within us all – truly the only sacred place there is – that we can all access.

I go to this place and bathe in its sweet silent waters on a daily basis. I go there and renew myself. I go there and quench an insanely deep and powerful thirst, that simply won’t go away by watching yet another hollywood classic.

The waves in this ocean are magnificent: they are made of the energy that makes ME. The sound, the music, the silent waterfall in this place, is majestic. It makes the most serene postcard nature scene into a faded print in an old National Geographic. This is living substance, and its kind word speaks my life into existence, day after timeless day.

Sustance. Something we can truly take home at the end of the day. Wealth. Gold that glitters in our most secret inner vault, far from the treacherous reach of the Wall Street Exchange. Joy. Unfathomable. Not tied to our wife’s smile or our visa bill or our pizza arriving on time.

This is the prime real estate of human life. This is the giving that keeps on receiving, long after the cell phone battery has died.

This is life, and this is you and this is me – in our simplest, truest, and most vibrant form.

It can only be known … and there is a Knowledge…