Monday, January 31, 2011

Walking Away From Your Ego

Argentine-Chilean border.  The gateway to Patagonia
“Generally speaking, the Way of the warrior is resolute acceptance of death”
-Miyamoto Musashi
c. 1645

For years I've understood Musashi's meaning, but only insofar as it has applied to medieval Japanese warfare. The 17th Century "Sword Saint" on one level is stating that a warrior must engage in battle with the full realization that he will die.  Only then can he cast off egotistical thoughts of self-preservation and truly be victorious.  Contemplating Musashi further, a deeper understanding emerges, one that applies to all things in life.  You must transcend your personal desires in order to wholly realize what life offers to you, otherwise your experiences are limited by your own sense of self-preservation.

Carrying Musashi's lesson into my life, I've recently come to understand that in any human relationship you must be willing to leave it,  walk away at any moment if need be. With this in mind, only then can you devote yourself wholly to your partner and the relationship which you share.  Otherwise your ego, occupied with protecting what you have, screams out in a yelp of self-protection, fingers squeezing tightly as the water runs out from in between.

Saturday, January 15, 2011


As a young boy my father looked at me and passed on a bit of wisdom; if in the end you've had five friends in your life you can consider yourself lucky.  Sage advice from a man who fully understood that his son was a deeply private person, one who would forever place the ultimate value and trust on those few individuals that he chose to let in close.

I lost one of those friends yesterday morning, and I am saddened beyond all words and expressions.  Of course I've known loss in my life, but nothing remotely to the extent of this.  At the news I sat for a very long time feeling the tears pour freely down my face onto my shirt.  The loss is complete and totally unexpected, so much so that I expect to carry this emptiness with me for the remainder of my days.