Why am I still here After all these years Given away my status Asked to be demoted Let go of all affiliations Depersonalized divine Developed an allergy To any trace of dogma Purged my scriptures Of fixed terminology Revived simple words Discarded trademarks Price paid for honesty So here I am after all In spiritual freedom Found by detaching Letting go of most all Even what was essential And helped me stand up Like scaffolding or staff Letting go such crutch No matter how grown Very close and dear Time came to stand On my very own feet That’s why I am here Not still, but all now More real than ever Answering a quest Why I am still here
“Embraced in silence” — so close, and yet so far — in memory of Elaine
Why I am staying away from institutions
There once was a man who was a seeker of God. He had traveled the world spending time with deep spiritual teachers of every sort he could find. He sang the 99 names of Allah. And he spent months in silence with Buddhists, Hindus and in Christian monasteries. He danced with Sufis, did vision quests with shamans and trained with Shaolin Monks. Then one day, he heard that were he to climb a certain secret mountain deep in the Hindu Kush, that were he to reach the top, he would meet God and find total enlightenment.
This was a very dangerous quest because the mountain was very remote and was difficult to climb for even the most experienced climbers. But the greatest danger came from the many bandits that always saw spiritual seekers as easy pickings.
The devil heard about this upstart and sent his demon to follow him and report back. The seeker headed up the mountain with the demon not far behind.
It was a difficult climb, but eventually, the seeker made it to the top. Standing at the very top of the mountain, standing on his tippy toes, the seeker reached up, higher and higher… and grasped hold of ultimate truth, met God and became cosmically aware! The seeker now knew all of the secrets of the universe and existence!
Naturally the demon was terrified and ran back to the devil with his report, fearing how his master would react. To his surprise, the devil just leaned back in his chair, yawned and said, “It’s not a problem. I’ll just tempt him to institutionalize it.”