At Ten-Thirty

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This is my human heart. It is essenceless, and me too, but that doesn’t keep it from beating inside me. This is me, at ten-thirty at night–bedtime if I were smarter and less attached to my attachments–listening to Shakey Graves and thinking about desire.

My friend Claire told me Tuesday, “It’s crazy, desire. I don’t even know what for.” And me neither. I get that. I mean, I could name a thousand things and the list would be unfinished to the nth degree.

A good night’s sleep-to be held close and tight-warm ocean water enveloping me-candle light in an empty room-dancing by myself for hours without having to wonder about whatever comes next… I want eternity, actually. I want the opposite of impermanence. I want the game of life and death and ignorance to stop for a minute here. I want to press pause and boogie in my underwear without there being any consequences.

But life ain’t like that. It’s all a big in-between. Or uncountable, indivisible little in-betweens. Every moment leads to another damn moment and whatever comes, I get to live, however I’m predisposed to live it. Most of the time, it ain’t like boogying in my underoos, that’s for sure. It’s not bad, either. Rich you know. Teaches me stuff, too. Which is the point of course. But it smacks of impermanence. That comes too fast for the good things and comes at a pace that only questionably qualifies as movement for the hard things.

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I had a conversation tonight that literally sent me reeling to the ground. It was surprising to see how much the body takes in. Facing some one talking at me loudly, not permitting me to respond, totally caught up in a fixed vision. The anger wasn’t directed at me, fortunately, but it still felt painful to absorb it all. I didn’t want to push back, but I didn’t know how to disengage the anger in front me, and probably I couldn’t have if I tried, and I didn’t know to finish the conversation and just walk away either (hard when some one won’t let you talk). I almost fainted, could feel my heartbeat slowing, and my vision getting dark.

What do you do, when you just don’t know how to be with reality? I can’t help but wonder if most of my activity is devoted to avoiding this knowledge. And yet, the whole purpose of a life in the dharma is to face that and learn to master it. I really hope it’s working. Otherwise, this life is major bogus. So that’s me, offering–and supplicating–the best I can, despite all my distraction and desire.

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And this is hibiscus fennel buns and a bowl of hummus, for girl’s brunch tomorrow. Which signifies, if you’re wondering, trying to keep connected with what is, in all its impermanent glory. Good things, hard things, mundane things, things I dunno how to handle. We gotst to keep on keepin’ on. Ain’t got no choice; might as well make this run count for something.

Oh, and hey, apologies for last week’s absence. Still adjusting to the new schedule of life with communications biz plus Bodhi Path study group, and occasional peeps who come to visit, and whatever else life can throw at me (let’s not talk about trying to pass my French driver’s license exam…these people are nuts for regulating minutiae. Effin’ socialists…). Anyhow, I’m trying to figure out this thing called discipline, but it’s um, a work in progress, if you know what I mean.

2 thoughts on “At Ten-Thirty

  1. Hi Jourdie,

    Enjoyed your writing. Been wanting to write you for awhile! Finally got around to it. 🙂 All apologies. We met at Sharminub during Rinpoche’s ceremonies. We spoke for a bit then you were pulled away. Lot of stuff was going on those days. I’m from the Pasadena Bodhi Path center. We recently hosted a program with Trinlay Rinpoche. I got to meet your Dad. 🙂 Hope you’re doing well. Keep up the wonderful writing, photos, art, and pastries! Take care and hope to see you again soon.


    • Hi César,

      Indeed, I remember you! I’m glad we had the opportunity to meet. It was a bit of a crazy time in Nepal wasn’t it? …What with all the organizing, grieving, writing, jetlag, new and old friends, etc, I definitely cherish those few days despite the madness. Also, cool that you got to meet my Dad. Little by little, I’m reeling him into the Dharma. ;D

      Thanks for the kind words and encouragement. I like having this space as a way to process and exchange with others in the same boat. It’s always nice to have company and dialogue about this whole life business! I hope to see you again soon as well. Ever come out to France, hehe? Actually, I’ll be in California briefly in April. I don’t think I’ll be able to make it to Pasadena, but with the SB BP, we’re trying to organize a get-together one evening to meditate a little and then exchange about life at Dhagpo, life in the BP, etc. It’s not exactly next door, but if you felt like making the trip or if you’re coming anyway for Lama Jampa Thaye’s teachings, it’d be great to see you there. We haven’t worked out all the details yet, but if you’d like me to let you know what happens, shoot me an e-mail at

      All the best!


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