A group of us left the Monastery early (my stay there ended with a three-day, silent retreat) to drive down to the city so we could attend the People's Climate March. Was it a bit bizarre to go from silence and a monastic setting to the streets of New York, crowded with 400,000 other people? I will just say that I may have had a moment where I collapsed on someone slightly saying, "why must Zen training be so hard?!" Beyond that moment of doubt that I could enter the fray on so little sleep, I would suggest that it might actually be just the right way to do it. It certainly helped with any overly ernest notions or ideals that I have had about the whole thing. Because, let's face it, if you can't have a sense of humor after three days of listening only to your own thoughts rolling through your mind, over and over and over, well...it's a hard life, indeed.
My own attempts at smartphone photography were, as one of my fellow marchers put it, sucky. So I am borrowing one from the Associate Press.
It was big. It was peaceful (no arrests!). It felt...good. What will happen today and tomorrow and the next day? I guess that remains up to us. For me, it was a boost to not give up on a direction that often feels like a wearying swim against the tide. Maybe the best message of the day was: you are not alone. People care. Lots of people care, a lot.
Meanwhile, shifting gears (non-combustable gears, of course), I bought some stuff!
When I hear the words "British, high-end, intellectual cat/fashion/philosophy/did I mention cat? magazine," I reach for my checkbook.
|Yes, I am a proud subscriber.|
My kit has arrived. Now to muster up the time and energy part of the equation.
So there you have it - marching for the planet with a dash of consumerism. It's a mixed up world we live in!