Be water my friend!

I have known this for a while. I just could not explain it to anyone. Actually not even to myself. It was just an emotion I had learnt one fine day. Like a Satori. When it arrives – it arrives.

I was struggling with my work. Everyday was fraught with tension. My nose was permanently buried in paper work and accounts. Money had become the main focus of my day.

One day I just gave up. I bent my shoulders and said “To hell with it”.

Dad had always said two things – Maintain quality. If you do that you can never go wrong. And – his other conviction was – whatever happens – happens for the best.

I could identify with the first. It somehow made logical sense to me. So even when I lost hope in my food business, ever taking off, I still maintained very high standards of quality.

I could not accept the second belief, about things being really shitty, but for our own benefit.

Because I was no longer stressing all day about money, and there was time in hand, I started getting creative once again. My mind left the by lanes of accounts and traveled the misty forest paths of new food textures, novel recipes and more research. I was suddenly free and my clients could communicate with me. There was more easy time and especially, more easy happy times with the kids. Friends were more in touch with me. The hub once more realized he had a wife!

And Bingo! One day when I dipped into the drawer to pull out some money for a bigger purchase, I suddenly had notes strewn haphazardly. I was making money and I did not even know about it.

That was my Satori – the Buddhist word for “Sudden Enlightenment”. I mean there was no flashing lights and cello music. Just a ping, somewhere in the recess of the brains, which said, “Let go! Don’t struggle. And that’s the key to your success and happiness”.

I have known this a while, and used it very often. Most of the times, without realizing.

When my main oven just died in front of our eyes, my men panicked. I just cancelled all orders, called in favors and had a new one installed within two days. What happened in those two days without orders? Nothing! Heavens did not fall. Clients did not write us off. We cleaned out long due clutter, and my men got a day off.

Recently my son fell and hurt his legs. He is a tedious, twenty-four hours journey away from us. Once he went to the hospital, we just settled down and waited for the news. Of course, there were mild palpitations and episodes of the heart about to squeeze out it’s last drop of blood, but there was this resigned attitude of just accepting the fact that – Yes! The kid is injured. And he will have to learn to deal with it. And deal with it he did!

I love, admire and adore Bruce Lee. When I realized, that his form of martial art is not all about physical strength, but in fact a philosophy of living, I started reading about him. Only then was I able to put into words, the theory I have been trying to live by.

He quotes :

Empty your mind. Be formless, shapeless, like water.

When you put water into a cup, it becomes a cup;

When you put water into a bottle, it becomes a bottle;

When you put water into a teapot, it becomes a teapot.

Now water can flow – or it can crash.

Be water, my friend.

(Bruce Lee)

The nature of water is to adapt itself instantly to any obstacle in its path, and by moving at its own pace, begin a natural process of surmounting it. Basically it means, to flow with the adversity in our lives till we can find a way to overcome it.

It’s so convoluted. But so simple.

 

(The Warrior Within – John Little)