Whose Dharma is it, Anyway?

I am one self united with my creator.  Salvation comes with from my one self.

Once upon a time I traversed the streets of Paris.  I really did.  And a girl’s gotta wonder…  How do all those boulangeries stay in business?  I swear there are more boulangeries in Paris than there are stars in the sky, or atoms in your body.  But I am remembering one in particular.  It was nothing special… it just happened to be en route between my studio apartment to the nearest metro stop.  Don’t misinterpret… “nothing special” does not mean that I did not stop at nearly every crystal clean window to gaze upon the prim and proper little buttery masterpieces… I did.  I stopped to soul salivate at at least forty four percent of boulangerie windows.  I was tickled and spellbound by the vast diversity of combinations of refined flour, sugar and butter that were possible, and their supernatural seductive powers never ceased to cause me to involuntarily brake.  But this particular shop shone beyond the rest because of the maiden who held court behind the counter.  Was she ordinary?  I don’t know.  But she was perfect.  Perfect like a Parisian Barbie doll, except made of real flesh instead of the usual plastic.  The first time I saw her, I was captivated.  I stood outside, peering through the pristine window, watching her ambivalently serve from behind the veneer of an evocative, poised self.

Tall, slender and curvaceous, her thick black hair was piled neatly sexy in a perfect French twist.  I was perplexed by her choice of outfits.  She looked like she was a high profile secretary, way too fancy to be slinging greasy treats on the streets of Paris.  She wore a low cut, snug fitting cotton shirt, a solid colored, curve hugging skirt and stalkings.  Her cleavage full, reminiscent of perfectly ripe fruit, youth, a wellspring of feminity and sex.  A string of large, languidly luminous pearls hugged her warm olive, swanish neck.  Her make-up was relatively heavy… Especially her eyes which on their own were large, dark and heavy with hidden meaning.  She accentuated them in the way of feline stealth, with a thick black line running along the upper lid and lashes so weighted with mascara that it was a wonder she could keep her eyes open.  Perhaps they rested at half mast…  I stood absorbing her wondrous existence for a double scoop of infinite minutes.  I wanted to touch the pulse of her humanness.  I wanted to know the unique music of her soul, but she kept it so hidden beneath her façade of deliberate, explicit beauty.  I perceived barely a trace of her inner world.  She worked with an air of seriousness and regal sophistication.  Most days, she was there, and most days, my feet involuntarily stopped their feverish traversal of the novelty of Parisian streets to pay homage to this delicious, stoic anomaly of a woman.

This was about five years ago.  But she lives inside me, timelessly.  Strange, the things that leave impressions.  I wish I could BE her.  Not literally, of course.  I could never be as cool, expressionless, tidy.  I wish I dressed to kill for my plain-assed life.  I wish I took my normalcy to the outer limits.  Ordinary people.  We are all such ordinary people on some level… you know what I mean?  Even though we are extraordinary… there is something so ordinary about the human experience.  We all wake up in the morning and must live the day, thrust ever forward by the space time continuum.  We all thirst for love and acceptance.  I could go on and on, listing the ways that we are the same, but why?  Just feel it.  Feel the core of your own humanity, right now, and it will save me a few frivolous strings of words.

In the Bhagavad Gita, Krishna tells Arjuna, “Better to do your dharma poorly than someone else’s well.”  So obviously I can’t be her.  I woke up with especially heavy questions about my path this morning, and this enigmatic boulangerista rose to the surface of my relentlessly musing mind.  Why?  Because I want to take as much meticulous care as she did as I claim my seat in the world.  No matter WHO I am, WHAT my dharma is, I want to set my table beautifully, intentionally, every day.  Sometimes I fantasize about catching the midnight flight to Paris, buying a fancy string of fat pearls and landing a job in a boulangerie… but… I’m not her.  I wonder though… Whose dharma was she performing so extraordinarily, hers?  Or someone elses?  And if I did run away to Paris with my aforementioned string of pearls, would that be HER dharma, or mine?

Krishna?  Why did you so generously shower Arjuna with Divine council, and leave me here all alone in the windowed corner of Gaylord’s café to restlessly stew in lonesome musings?  Today I woke up drowning in the color blue… but somehow I got myself to the meditation cushion… hopeful that Grace would somehow conk me over the head with blissful silence… But alas, twenty something minutes of my ego-bound life spilled through time’s treacherous cracks in a flurry of roaring chaotic chatter, emotional strife and a generous pinch of despair.  Krishna?  Can you please speak up???  Jesus?  Could you please help a sistah out? (Out of dillusion, that is…)  Paramahansa Yogananda?  Would you toss a starving heart a blessed bone?  I’d really appreciate it.  When will I learn to be quiet enough to hear?  In A Course in Miracles recently, they said that spiritual realization is not something to casually attain…only to throw aside for the next achievement or acquisition… If we are relating to it as just another fresh assed, groovy thing to have, like a new Ipad (she said with a scornfully crinkled nose…) than forget about it.  If that’s the case, better just stick with the Ipad.  Awakening is not a frivolous endevor.  It is not just another casual possession to acquire and leave on the shelf to collect dust.  That is what harmoniums and typewriters and sewing machines are for!!!  I had a good laugh when that last thought lit down in my mind.   I wanted a harmonium SO BAD.  Now I have had one for almost a year and have played it all of three times.  I have had a dream of taking an old fashioned typewriter out into the world and being a poetic muse for the masses for YEARS, literally… Recently, one finally landed in my possession, and now I am terrified to take action and embrace that dream… Mykael just bought a sewing machine at a garage sale for fifteen bucks.  Of course I would love to learn to sew, but I can’t even pretend that I will, until I muster the courage to exercise my other two dream machines.   Once I DO, maybe THEN Krishna and Jesus, Yogananda and God will bother to speak up, flood my mind with revelatory light…

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1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Rosy Moon
    Apr 28, 2010 @ 00:13:43

    I LOVE you!!!!!

    Reply

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