Have you noticed how ridiculous you are, how seriously you take yourself, your practices. Have you ever watched someone meditating or doing Yoga or Tai Chi who takes them selves too seriously and how ridiculous they look to eveyone appart from themselves.
That person is me sometimes, not that it’s not useful to have some focus and grounded-ness in our being, but come on!
I read a book recently in which a great Yogi named Swami Rama recounts a story in which he sat with an elder in meditation for a few days by the banks of the Ganges when he was young. The great master he was with was famous for initiating people into Mantra Yoga, giving them a personal sacred mantra to use for the rest of their life’s.
After a few days in meditation, this master turned to Swami Rama who was then a novice and said “ok I have your Mantra, let’s walk down to the side of the Ganges and I’ll whisper it into your ear.”
They walked down to the river side where this great master whispered into Swami Rama ear the words ..
“Always be cheerful.”
And that was that.
As first Swami Rama was furious and thought this must be some kind of joke, but later recounts that this simple teaching was one of the most significant lessons of his life.
When joyfulness and playfulness becomes part of our path we start to understand what Christ said in the teaching “You have to become like children to enter (experience) the kingdom of heaven.”
This is a powerful understanding, as the egoic aspect of our being hates playfulness and wants to turn the spiritual trip, and our own being into a some kind of austere, self aggrandising power trip.
Perhaps if you’re reading this, you are being reminded today to learn to laugh and lighten up a little, sometimes laughing at our own ridiculousness is great Medicine.
The Cosmic joke is that of building us up simply to knock us down again, until we lose attachment to the need for praise and our crippling fear of the judgment of others.
Life might put us on the pedestal from time to time and in our highest moment of teaching make us fart or trip over our laces and have our pants fall down.
If in that moment we can’t laugh at ourselves, life will often send someone to laugh at us for us, until we let go of this pain of egoic identification, and so join them in their vision of our own ridiculousness.
In the words of *Shakespeare “It takes a wise man to play the fool.”