There are two dimensions to life and we should be able to touch both. One is like a wave and we call it the ‘historical dimension’. The other is like the water and we call it the ‘ultimate dimension’ or nirvana. We usually touch just the wave, but when we discover how to touch the water we receive the highest fruit that meditation can offer.
Today’s teaching reminds me of a conversation in the backseat of a van with a shaman while traveling through Monrovia, Liberia on our way to exorcise negative energy from a friend’s office space. The shaman would be doing the exorcising; I was the support staff. This was my first time acting in such a capacity lest I sound very casual about this event.
During the ride, we began to talk about my work and the changes I wanted to make in my business. I was expressing my impatience and also my nervousness about altering the focus of my business. I wanted to support other landscape designers to grow their businesses as well as other creative entrepreneurs. I was worried that I would not be as successful as I had been in my own design business. I was impatient because despite my concerns this was really important to me.
Finally, I got to the heart of what was holding me back from really diving into business coaching-I was worried of letting my clients down. Did I have enough experience and expertise to share?
I will never forget what the shaman replied. He reassured me that I could help others in a meaningful and profound way. He used the example of a fish who wonders what water is like only to finally realize that he is swimming in it. Living in a space for any length of time like the fish in water sometimes obscures our ability to recognize what we know. The fish knows the water like he knows himself. I know the challenges creative entrepreneurs face, it is the water I have lived in most all of my life. I also know that I help other business owners and creatives gain more clarity and satisfaction in their pursuits.
So when I think of the waves, I think of all the stuff that happens outside of ourselves. The stuff that catches our attention and at the time can seem so real and so important. The water, however, is our true self, our universal self that is always present and a foundation from which we can draw incredible strength and calm.
I would be curious to know how you interpret this teaching. What is your water? Are you consumed by the waves? I welcome your thoughts and comments, contact me.