compass4I came back to the US without any agendas. I figured I would figure it out once I arrived. I gave myself some time to recover, some time to be present with Loveleen, some time to just be. In the absence of any structure or guidance, I found myself reverting to some old habits. I looked at my first naked chick pictures on the internet in well over a year, I slept a lot, I avoided the incredible pile up of work that was waiting for me from Friends Without Borders.

Very shortly after arriving, I picked up the book Siddhartha by Herman Hesse and started reading it. It had been many years since I first read it and it was actually very different from what I had remembered. It was very difficult watching Siddhartha lose himself after cultivating such an extraordinary spirit. In the story, he is very casual about the choices he made, saying that they allowed him to awaken naturally and know the limitations to surface living in a genuine way, without dogma. And his experience seemed to be very parallel to what I found myself falling into the first weeks back in the US.

Without direction, I wasn’t going anywhere. I could easily see how this could spiral into depression and addiction, etc. Fortunately, for me, the need for some kind of compass was very clear, and I don’t feel I will drift very far.

A compass is something that ensures that your spirit is lit and exercised. We are surrounded by all kinds of temptations that seem attractive, but will only bring us misery in the long run. Though they are often flawed, religion, spirituality, or at least some kind of engagement with the world can keep us moving through life in a healthy way.

I guess for me, I tend to recreate my compasses all the time. Presently, I don’t yet have one, but it’s likely, when I find it, the needle will be pointing your direction.