Control

It was December 2001 the end of a crazy year. In May my grandfather had died at age 92 after having invited all the guests on his big 90th birthday celebration to his 100th birthday party just two years earlier. I had talked to him when I was in the car on my way to the airport to visit him in the hospital. When my mother picked me up at the subway station in Nuremberg the next day she just had gotten a phone call from the hospital that he had died.

I had to tell my grandmother that the man she had been married to for 65 years had passed away. That is still one of the hardest things I have ever done.

On September 11, 2001 I took a yoga class early in the morning with Battabhi Jois the founder of Ashtanga yoga. It was one of the most beautiful days ever in New York. After class I took a cross- town bus to get to my apartment on the East Side. Minuets later the first tower was hit and the city changed forever.

Since my grandmother was not able to live alone any more we found a friend of the family to stay with her but she wanted to go on vacation for Christmas and New Years. I offered to stay with her.

It was not an easy task. She was forgetting a lot. Every morning we had a discussion for half an hour about her taking a shower. She was so cute while trying to convince me that she did take a shower the day before even though I knew she didn’t. She just forgot. My day started with waking her up in the morning, dressing her, making breakfast, cleaning the house, cooking lunch, go shopping, make afternoon tea, preparing dinner and getting grandma ready for bed. It was exhausting but I loved her that gave me the strength to do it.

I was with her for three weeks straight. The only time I had for myself was early in the morning and after she went to sleep. I religiously meditated two hours per day, wrote my diary on a daily basis and spent the evenings reading “I Am That” by Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj.

This book, the best book I’ve ever read is a collection of talks of Sri Nisargadatta with people from all over the world who came to India to visit him and to talk to somebody who is beyond the mind. My teacher referred to this book as “spiritual Olympics”. Before I started to read it I had worked myself through “The Course In Miracles” twice and assumed that I would understand what he was talking about only to have to admit that I had no idea what he tried to describe.

I was already through more then 2/3 of the book when I was deeply struck by something that Sri Nisargadatta said about control and it has been in the back of my mind ever since. It has been a few years I hope I quote this correctly. He said something like, “When you understand that you have no control you can sit back and enjoy the show”.

Is it true? Is it this simple? Do we really have no control over life? Is all this effort trying to control the outcome, being worried not to get what we want and subsequently judging ourselves for not having been able to fulfill our desires just a waist of time? Would this energy we lose by worrying and giving ourselves a hard time be much better spend on enjoying the ride to the fullest? On doing our best and then letting go and accepting the outcome whatever it might be?

How would our lives look like if we would sit back and enjoy the adventure?

 

 

 

“Control” Williamsburg/Brooklyn/My bookshelf with books sorted by hight 09/06/08 at 12:31 AM

Please check out my website at carstenfleck.com

Advertisements

About this entry