The burning pain of yearning for an instants relief from the parched burning desert of this abandoned world is a desparate hunger. We fantasize and long for even a drop of divine sustenance to fall from the empty heavens to ease the heat of our cracked lips. We weep, we pray and like homeless dogs we scratch here and there for any scraps of relief.
Yet no relief. No matter what we try, nothing works. No books, no gurus, no beliefs, no sex, no booze, no hate, no desire fulfilled can bridge the abyss we feel between where we have arrived and what we hoped to become. We have only fed the demons of insatiable desire. Only to sustain the unquenchable desire for relief.
The Buddha has told us that in the twin forms of clinging to life, we keep ourselves cosmic gerbils, spinning endlessly on the wheel of suffering. One form of clinging is the clinging to pleasure and the other, clinging to the avoidance of pain.
We feel alone in our private suffering which we cannot allow the world to see. If the world we know were to somehow see us stripped down to the unveiled reality of our inner landscape of suffering, exposed for the curious to stare at, like some random roadside accident? How could we ever risk revealing the poverty of our inner resources? The emptiness and sheer unresponsiveness of all our emergency strategies. Until finally we are forced through unbearable isolation to break the opaque shell of our habitual defensivness, letting go the habit of defending ourselves from life which is now silently “shouting”, calling us to let go.
To fall to our existential knees utterly surrendered to the silence of God.
Only when we have finally given up all clinging to life as we know it can we discover the Life that we are, always were and will be.
“To get to where you are not, you have to pass through where you are not. To reach the place of possessing all, desire to possess nothing. To reach the place of being all, desire to be nothing.”
St. John of the Cross