Haven’t written in a couple of weeks. It isn’t that I haven’t meant to, but it’s felt like what’s going on in my mind is so unprocessed, it’s not ready to be nailed onto paper.
But one thing happened today that I felt I needed to write down, even if I can’t figure it out. Maybe writing it down will help me untangle it.
The guru here is a chubby man with salt and pepper hair, grown very long and unkempt as if caring for it is beneath his worry. Most of the holy men you see here are skinny as alley cats but this one isn’t, though I’ve never seen him eat. He smiles and joins us for meals but I never see the food enter his mouth.
Anyway. When he sits to chant with us he sits with us, not facing us. I am under the impression that he hardly speaks to those like me. After someone has been at the temple for a year or two, then he will make an occasional comment. After ten years, perhaps an actual lesson. This information has been slowly gleaned by me with observation and what I can gather with the limited languages I have available.
Today, though, as we chanted, he roamed among us and when he came to me, he put a flower behind my ear and smiled at me.
And I lost it. I burst into tears as feelings of helplessness poured out of me. Helplessness. I have no idea where that feeling came from. As I sit here writing I can try to rationalize it but it feels like trying to explain why the bicycle wore glasses in a dream. Was it my own emotions that made me helpless, my intense but ignored need for affection and love, suddenly kindled and leaving me gasping? Or was it merely the touch of an enlightened being returning me to the state of being an infant, a creature helpless but full of needs?
Or was it something darker? Did I feel feminized in that moment? Forced into a role? Was it fear that the flower meant my victimization before a powerful figure? Or my fear that an idol had fallen?
His smile never wavered. He cupped my cheek and then moved on. I do not understand what happened.
I do feel calmer now. I feel serene. But not enlightened. These are not the questions I want to be asking.
Tomorrow after the morning chores are done, I will move on.