Life is a series of surprises. They wake us up, surprises do. If it weren’t for surprises, we’d be cocooned in our own conditioning, wrapped in our habits, mummified in memory, made dull and robotic through endless repetition. See, we measure our liveliness by what we shed, in moments of realizing, ‘I’m done with that.’
A prodigal son awakes to the realization that he is a prince living in a pigsty. This is the birth of a new consciousness. Then he decides to stay in the pigsty. This is the death of a new consciousness.
Jesus: “Do not put new wine in old wine skins.” Epictetus: “If you want to change old habits, you may have to move to a different country in order to do it.”
Home is not a house; it’s the present moment.
If we are not present, we are not at home.
The prodigal son awakened in a pig barn. Stunning, to find oneself at home in a pig barn.
Discipline has nothing to do with subjugation, suppression or standing at attention. It does not mean replacing one pattern of behaviour with another. It means “to learn.”
We must be completely free in order to learn. Freedom begins with the realization of how trapped we are.
The least free are the most conventional.
Ordinary life is the life of an ox. It is dull, conformed, routinized. It goes round and round, repeating itself.
To slay a dragon, kill a habit.