Exercised and met up with Karaj before going to church (Dev, Robert, Kuldip, Karaj, Shona and me). I was distracted by the fervour of the preacher but took some useful words from the morning. We all have the same struggle. It is the same for everyone – nobody has it easy, so don’t bother comparing. Also, we lose sight of God when we are too focused on our problems. They are small and insignificant in comparison to the splendour of the Universe but we allow them to have a devastating effect on us nonetheless.
In the session after church Karaj told me that he had considered ringing me to tell me not to let Kuldip off lightly with any of his behaviour during our time at the flat yesterday. He reconsidered and decided not to contact me reasoning that I would act appropriately whatever the situation. He told me that he trusts me to do that. As I heard his words I felt that they were connected to my new-found calmness. The peace and quiet I have achieved recently have increased my ability to judge situations better. I am relishing the development of that skill. It is an exciting time but, paradoxically, that excitement does not impinge upon or affect my silence. Robert later confirmed that I had indeed been appropriate yesterday.
In the evening I went out for a cigarette and Kuldip joined me. I thought back to the trust which Karaj had communicated to me this morning and I felt worthy of that trust. As Karaj said to me a few days ago, now that I have calmed down, we can work together. I feel less childish and immature than I have ever felt.
The Support Is There
With Kuldip I noticed, in the short conversation we had, how much of a pull there is for me to provide solutions, to rescue, and to tell him what he needs to do. As I reflected on these urges I also knew that there is no point whatsoever in following them or giving way to them. As I said to Kuldip, he doesn’t have to be with us or speak with us to know and to feel that our support is there. We don’t solve each other’s problems, we provide the support for each other to work through our issues.
Kuldip (desperately) wants to attend the vision workshop in the new year but has been told that he doesn’t fulfil the criteria (which include attendance at the Script and Sicily workshops). He has approached me and Dev for advice on what to do but, after Karaj had talked to him this morning which he seemed to have forgotten, I told him this evening that he has to make the effort. Our full support is always there but to ask me or Dev ‘what’ or ‘how’, is not the way forward. This is where I was most tempted to provide him with some advice. I just told him that he has it within himself to work it out.
The evening session was a productive and fruitful one. All four of us (me, Kuldip, Dev and Robert) worked silently. Robert worked on his weekly reports to his boss, Dev on his latest application, Kuldip on his appraisal and me on mine. There is a quiet industry about us when we work like that. Karaj came down and we reviewed our day and our work.
Following another challenge from Karaj to Kuldip, Robert talked about the way Karaj maintained his energy whilst focusing all the time on Kuldip’s issue. He did not waste energy getting wrapped up in any emotions, which is what I tend to do. Exasperation, frustration, anger, disappointment, annoyance… are all wasteful emotions and ultimately lead to a substantial drain on my energies and render the challenge/discussion/argument not only ineffective but also damaging.
The exchange also demonstrated the power of silent support. My focus was on Karaj. I supported him. In turn I was allowed to remain free of Kuldip’s games, hooks and manipulation. This consolidated what I had told Kuldip in the garden this evening – the support is always there and very often it is wiser and healthier to be quiet than to speak and get drawn in. The following comes from Will Durant, an American historian (1885-1981):
‘One of the lessons of history
is that nothing is often a good thing to do
and always a clever thing to say.’
Another result of the challenge was a discussion on the consequences of our actions. Everything I do and say has consequences and if I am aware of those consequences I can better steer my life where I want to go. In addition, I am better able to predict what will happen and, therefore, be prepared for events which can come at any time. It is possible and essential that we look weeks, months, even years down the line at the consequences of our actions.
The evening ended with some lovely, calming words from Karaj which brought us all back down to earth:
“We are very gently moving forward. We have to keep very quiet. We need to think of our visions. In order to realise our visions we need to become quiet so that as we make a movement, nobody should see that we are moving. It’s as simple as that. So our job is to be quiet.
When we have arrived, people will know we have arrived. But to make noise before is unwise. So don’t fall into the trap of making noise before your time. The time is not right yet. We have a whole year of quietness. So whenever you think of your success or how well you’re doing, think of all the pain you’ve gone through to get here. Remember the pain. We have suffered quite a lot. Don’t forget the pain. If you forget the pain, you’re being cocky and you will fall straight into a hole, and every time you fall into a hole it is going to be more damaging.
We don’t have scripts which are winner’s scripts. So, people will know we are doing well. They will feel us. They can see us but we can’t see them, and that’s the problem. There are much cleverer people than us who will trip us over. And they don’t even know they are tripping us over. That’s the worst part. They are just being friendly and they will pick you up after they have tripped you. So, no cockiness.
We need quietness. If there is noise in your heads then you will not get where you want to. We need a lot of quietness, here and everywhere. Next year we will have a quiet period after the vision workshop. In the quietness we will work, we’ll keep it private until our time comes, then when our time comes we are not going to brag. We are going to remain quiet because this is for us, for our inner peace. Don’t brag to the world. People who will benefit from what we do will benefit anyway. We are simply here to serve people. All we ask for in return is a lot of quietness so that we can help each other and protect each other. I want to make sure that this space is very peaceful and safe for people.
Let us cultivate the non-attachment way of working. Our work should not disturb anybody. I appreciate the brotherhood we have here, but let’s relax. Let us get to our inner peace individually and collectively. We have been through a very noisy period and now we just want to be in the backwaters. Quiet. Very quiet.”