Monday, April 20, 2009

Point Break!

If you really pay attention, then you can find a philosophy for life, a 'Way', in just about everything. You dont have to be the 'Buddha'. You could be the guy bagging groceries at the corner store...you could be the guy that rents out jet skis in the Bahamas. You could be anyone!

I like surfing movies because I happen to like the beach...a lot. Over the weekend I caught up on a couple of them, namely the animated 'Surf's Up!' and the classic Keanu/Swayze 'Point Break.' The thing that surfing tells you is to 'Let Go.' Learn to find your equilibrium, your balance on the crest of a wave.

Life is that wave isnt it? It's an inexorable force drawing us to a certain destiny. We can't really fight it. It's much too strong. But we can learn to steady ourselves...we can learn to surf.

There is a lot of power to be gained in letting go. I recall the dream that the protagonist of 'Fight Club' had when his life wasnt going anywhere. He was locked up in the banal anxieties of normal life when he dreampt of a penguin telling him to 'Slide' while it cascaded joyfully down an ice wall. Following that, he let go...he learned to slide....to 'surf' so to speak. In letting go, he faced and then finally accepted himself...of a sort at least.

Our greatest challenges arise when we face loss of any kind. We lose a family member perhaps...or a wife....a child. How do we let go then? How do we accept things as they are? How do we surf the big waves?

Surfing is a sport. Life is a kind of sport too. It requires discipline, dedication, poise, and focus. It also calls for a lot of heart and the kind of will that accepts the moment. In the moment destiny is revealed. Only in the moment do we live. Only...in the here and now.

Even in its ugliness, life is beautiful. It is the perfect, immediate 'I'. Life is the awakening of the Self in and through each self. Vicktor Frankl found meaning beyond the horrors of the holocaust where he watched his family perish. It does not damn us to surf. We live in that moment on the wave. When at last it swallows us, we are but engulfed by our soul, to wait and rise once more perhaps.

We living are the thrill seekers. After all, we have all dared to be born into the rolling waves. The tides send us out and finally call us home. And somewhere in the middle we each have a moment to sink or swim...to surf...to slide...and to be.

We best determine our being by letting go and becoming. We dont plant our roses in the shade after all. And we dont move forward when the water is still and the waves are calm. We look to the waves to embrace them and to find our way.

Surfs up.

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