Wednesday, May 20, 2009

A Place to Call Home

Each person who sets out in search of Truth does so for their own reasons. In my case it was about finding my home, the place where I belong. I spent the first twenty years of this life moving around British Columbia. I went to thirteen different schools and the longest I spent in one place was two and a half years in Victoria. There was no opportunity to grow attached to places or people and I didn't want to anyway. It would have made it harder to leave. When I was 12 my family broke up and my parents moved to separate cities. All this rootlessness set the stage perfectly for what was to come. In "Through the Looking Glass", Alice leaves the looking glass house and sets off toward a hill in the garden, but each time she finds herself back at the house.


"It's no use talking about it," Alice said, looking up at the house and pretending it was arguing with her. "I'm not going in again yet. I know I should have to get back through the looking glass again -- back into the old room --- and there'd be an end of all my adventures!"
So, resolutely turning her back upon the house, she set out once more down the path, determined to keep straight on till she got to the hill. For a few minutes all went on well, and she was just saying "I really shall do it this time ---" when the path gave a sudden twist and shook itself (as she described it afterwards), and the next moment she found herself actually walking in at the door.
"Oh, it's too bad!" she cried. "I never saw such a house for getting in the way! Never!"

On Alice's next attempt, she comes upon some talking flowers. During their conversation, she spots the Red Queen.
"I think I'll go and meet her," said Alice, for, though the flowers were interesting enough, she felt that it would be far grander to have a talk with a real Queen.
"You can't possibly do that," said the Rose: "I should advise you to walk the other way."
This sounded nonsense to Alice, so she said nothing, but set off at once towards the Red Queen. To her surprise she lost sight of her in a moment, and found herself walking in at the front-door again.
A little provoked, she drew back, and, after looking everywhere for the Queen (whom she spied out at last, a long way off), she thought she would try the plan, this time, of walking in the opposite direction.
It succeeded beautifully. She had not been walking a minute before she found herself face to face with the Red Queen, and full in sight of the hill she had been so long aiming at.
This is such a perfect description of the search for the heart's desire. As long as it is sought "out there", it only recedes further. The external world is a mirage, ever shifting, never reached. Home is truly "where the heart is". It is to be found within the still center, the only permanent thing. Paradoxically, the search for home, the place where I belong, has involved leaving behind everything that normally provides security, accepting no substitutes. Places, people, tradition, beliefs, even personality all pass away. This is freedom. This is my home. It is nowhere... and everywhere.

3 comments:

  1. Wow. I don't know whether to feel sad for you or happy for you - I'll feel happy for you. It sounds like you found something.

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  2. From MCE -

    Cheers :)

    In Lak'ech

    ReplyDelete