Living in the moment
I remember standing in a room with two other people, who were probably my mom and sister, when my grandma came in. She walked towards the yellow machine that served multiple hot drinks, just like the one at the Riverside School, but before she could reach it, she collapsed. I remember freaking out so much while my mom and sister did nothing. They acted as if it was normal. For some reason I found myself with a pamphlet in my hands and started going through it to find the emergency number. Apparently there were many different phone numbers according to the condition of the sick person and, by how much I was scared, it took me forever to find the right one. I couldn’t stop my hands from shaking and my mouth from babbling words of desperation. Tears were quickly building up in my eyes. The next thing that I remember is standing in a hospital. This was probably in India, now that I think about it. It reminds me of a building under construction that we have passed multiple times by car in these past few days. There was no glass on the windows, the walls were gray, and I was in one of the top floors, high above ground level. Here I stood in a big room with sick people. In front of me there was an empty white bed. By my right side there was a male doctor. I was furiously trying to convince the doctor to check-in my grandmother into the hospital and to heal here. She was still in the room where she had collapsed, wherever that was, not moving. NOT moving. I was so desperate, lost, and furious. Why wouldn’t anyone help her?! It felt like my heart was being stabbed over and over again. I finally woke up from this nightmare as my roommate closed the door of our bathroom here at ESI.
This nightmare confirms my fear of death. I am constantly worried of losing my family, the people around me, and myself, to death. These troubled thoughts of mine affect my actions and emotions, making me sad, fearful of life, and prevent me from living in the moment. When I read chapter 8 of Gandhi’s book ‘Ashram Observances’, I knew that this fear had to be removed from inside me. This chapter is about fearlessness and the sentence that has stayed with me the most is “Fear has no place in our hearts, when we have shaken off attachment for wealth, for family, and for the body.” I connect this statement to what Jayesh Bhai said yesterday, July 1st :“You are the cause of your own suffering”. First of all, I do not want to live my whole life suffering, especially when I am the one causing it and have the ability to prevent it. Secondly, I do not want to be constantly worrying about the future, but want to be focused on the present. I want to live in the moment, just like we have been doing here in India, or at least I have been trying. Right now I feel like I am more present, even though sometimes my old habits take over and I ask the teachers questions about future activities, and always feel a little ashamed of myself for forgetting when they say, “just wait and see”. This practice has made me more observant as I do not know what our next blog text or project will focus on exactly. I hope, and will definitely try, to keep this skill that I am currently acquiring.