Tuesday, 24 July 2012

Saturday, July 21st, 2102

Absolute Necessity

Calgary, AB

Some cool air travelled through the open windows of our bus. It took its toll on my back, and rendered it as stiff as a board. God knows that lower back spasms became an impetus for me to do long distance trekking as a way to cure a troubled back in my thirties. Back pain comes to haunt me from time to time. The pain restricted me from taking part in the Festival of Chariots held on 8th Ave and culminating in Calgary's Shaw Millennium Park next to the armoury building.

Nice spot! But, no trees. The marquis spared participants from the hot sun. I did catch a middle-to-the-tail-end of the entertainment. Our drama was presented and liked, though the outdoor crowd was thinned by then. The community here has a reputation for being a bit of a chatterbox. When my Godbrother, also a monk, spoke, there was so much distraction . Being a monk has its opportunities for experiencing humility.

I recall when one outstanding performer told me of a humbling moment. Jayadeva, who is from the UK, and formerly a member of the Rubettes, a rock band that had climbed to fame in the 60's, was singing in front of a devotional audience during lunch. Despite his past and current reputation, the apparent spectators were not attentive at all. They were absorbed in eating. After he got off stage, he remarked to me, "that was the most humbling experience of my life."

For me, not being able to trek a serious walk today, due to the baby steps I could manage, was a reminder of my physical futility. We are all vulnerable to the onslaughts of nature's modes. This is not bad, necessarily. We need to be put in our place of meekness. Our false pride needs to be challenged. It's an absolute necessity.

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