10 Aug 2008

"I hope for nothing. I fear nothing. I am free."

This of course is the famous quote from Kaza. It is written on his tomb in Heraklion. A lot of Westerners find it difficult accept it. The fear bit seems more obvious at first: to live without fear is to be free, straight forward.
What about the hope thing. Surely hope must be a positive thing, it helps you connect to the future, gives you strength, etc. Well, Kaza was thinking of something different here. This is more the Buddhist idea of not clinging on to your ambitions too strongs. You have got to be able to let go...of your career aspirations, your great plans, even your relationships. if you feel your life or your self depends on these things, you have already lost it. Be easy about it, risk being able to let go if necessary...and miraculously you won't have to... The reason for this of course is that you don't try as desperately and therefore you make less mistakes. You become cool and loose.
What about the fear bit? What do we fear? Mostly other people, the loss of our jobs (and therefore our money). Fearing what others mights say is one of the most retarding things in life. We do this to each other. As for money, we tend to have a lot more than we really need. We tend to overestimate this worry. Almost noone in the west is really in an existential threat. We have a lot less time on our hands than money. Yet we spend long hours, summers toiling at our jobs, concerned about money, being worried about loosing our jobs. Only as we grow older do we realise how little time we actually have on this planet.

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