I’ve been watching the effects of the letting go I’ve done this year so far, of ‘supports’ of a certain kind. Going down to once every-2-week therapy sessions is one thing. I definitely see the effects of that, because I do write more and try to lean out more into more public expressions of my life, reach into the past for answers, less. Which feels incredibly good, and doesn’t make me ‘believe in’ therapy less. If anything, I see how positive attachments nourish confidence and sufficiency.
The decision I want to make now has to do with the Waking Up app, which I’ve subscribed to for a few years. This is my go-to app for meditations before work in my car, and occasional discussions about consciousness that gel with my modern interests. It’s an inquiry based meditation style, with a beginning course format, and basically I’ve found it refreshing to stay rooted and respectful to source texts without longing for a past or other world, some different reality.
When I began with Buddhism and meditation, quite a while ago now, “dzogchen” was the most mysterious thing, and I like the way Harris has made it less so. In the circles I’ve been drawn to there is always the idea one doesn’t have to study for years and years, but rather can start at the end (Harris often uses “Arrive instantly”). Yet, still there has for me been some feeling of “too late”—of reaching the gate after having done all the necessary chores, closed out.
How could I have known, back then, what I would have needed to know, to be now where I need to be?
In fact, a teacher I truly love once hurt my feelings by saying it was too late for me. Over the years I kept waiting for him to take it back or clarify, wrestling with what I’ve felt as double standards and blind spots… thinking something like “What then, are we just playing around? Is the start-at-the-end stuff just some fun concept?” But today, and I can’t explain this, “too late” struck as quite liberating. “Give up” wasn’t meant to bully me or get me to go away. Or, if it was, I’ve unpacked precisely the opposite message. Yes, it’s too late. How wonderful!
What this means for subscribing to the app or not, I’m not sure. It doesn’t seem to matter either way.