Stone: depends on the subject.
The Mantra: A Sat Ma Sat Gamaya
With the right attitude traveling can help because we are influenced
much more than we realize by our milieu, those around us,
habits, etc, and a change is often fertile.
But this is still on the surface of your being:
learn how to travel within.
a) Ramana Maharshi introduces the issue by asking this essential Question:
Where are you going?
And then answers it thus:
You are not going anywhere. The Self does not move,
the world moves in it.
You are only what you are. There is no change in you. So then, even after
what looks like a departure from here, you are here and there
and everywhere. These scenes shift.
He means that there is no change in the real you.
To which extent can you see this?
You can travel in all the four quarters of the earth but will find
nothing anywhere for whatever there is,
is only HERE.
Did you perchance think that it could be anywhere else?
Don’t be deceived.
As He said, it will only be HERE and NOW.
Anais Nin noted that:
We are going to the moon that is not very far. Man
has so much farther to go within himself.
b) Kierkegaard also didn’t think much of traveling and said that
People commonly travel the world over to see rivers and mountains, new stars, garish birds, freak fish, grotesque breeds of human;
they fall into an animal stupor that gapes at existence and think
that they have seen something.
However, Tagore disagrees and affirms that:
The traveler has to knock at every alien door to come to his own,
and he has to wonder through all the outer worlds
to reach the innermost shrine at the end.
Who is right, Kierkegaard or Tagore?
Kierkegaard is talking of those at the beginning of the Path, while Tagore speaks of the seekers who at a certain stage of their evolution need to explore various doors in order to find their own Path.
On the other hand, as we do absorb the way of thinking, fears, prejudices and thought formations of those around us, the mental atmosphere of the culture we are born in or of the country where we live,
leaving all this awhile gives one a chance to become more
in contact with our inner being.
A good traveler is one who does not know where he is going to,
and a perfect traveler does not know
where he came from.
How good a traveler are you?
Do you really know where you are going to?
What about where you came from?
a perfect traveler knows that he comes from the Divine
and is going to Him,
but Lin Yutang meant that a perfect traveler has no mental constructions about where he is going, and know that he does not really come from his parents or the birthplace of his body.
c) It is only natural to enjoy traveling,
but this easily becomes a mere distraction and at best can only be
a preparation for the inner journey indispensable to find out
who we really are and accomplish
the Mission of our soul.
The reason that very few ever attempt such inner Journey is not only the Veil, the adverse forces plus the countless conditionings preventing most of us for entering it, but also that
it takes a lot of courage to go where very few have ever gone, and where unless
we can find at least one similarly minded soul we will remain
alone even in the midst of a crowd.
How would this make you feel?
It makes us feel just WONDERFUL.
Rumi has a warning:
if you keep forever traveling from this to that you might
end up going around like a donkey at the mill,
round and round its fixed post.
Are you still traveling from form to form?
It is just an old, bad habit.
To which “post” have you been attached so far?
How to become free from it?
You don’t want to be the donkey.
Oliver Goldsmith agrees with Rumi and warns that:
A man who leaves home to mend himself and others is a philosopher,
but he who goes from country to country guided by the blind
impulse of curiosity is a vagabond.
When a merchant came to offer a donation for the congregation, he boasted to no end about all the faraway places that he had visited with his caravan.
The Kabuli only smiled, but after the merchant left said:
What a traveler! It seems that the only place where
he has never been is in himself!
It is often the Veil that makes us wish to travel here and there in the outside world
to neutralize our subliminal need to Journey in the vast
unexplored continents within us.
In the Dreamgame, with the right attitude Traveling is always an OPPORTUNITY, otherwise it becomes yet another DISTRACTION.
The Opportunity aspect is that, as St. Augustine said that
The world is a book and who does not travel
reads but a page.
The other aspect is that
The real Journey is the inward one, and traveling in the world
may well distract us from it.
The Devil’s Advocate:
Traveling? Where could you ever possibly go to find Him?
Beloved, listen: why don’t you just return
to your true home at last!
Words of Power:
Travel wherever you want, but don’t forget to visit also the immense,
unexplored continents without you!
“Whatsoever road I took, it joined the street
leading to Thee.” Inayat Khan
“This is a journey without distance. Stop traveling
and you arrive.” Anthony de Mello
“In order to travel it’s enough to be.”
In the sixties there was that cherished myth, “being on the road.” so as a teenager and in his early twenties Vijay traveled in many European and Arab countries.
What was the use of it, he asked himself much later, and thought that his time would have been put to better use if he had come to India to do Yoga much earlier instead,
but eventually became aware that he could not have found his true direction
without first exploring so many wrong ones.
What about YOU?
Follow Cesare Pavese’s advice:
If you wish to travel far and fast, travel light. Take off all your envies,
jealousies, un-forgiveness, selfishness and fears.
Kabir’s advice is even better:
Don’t go off anywhere else! Kabir says: just discard
all thoughts of imaginary things and stand
firm in that which you are.
How will you stand firm in what you really are?
It is enough to let go of all that you have ever been.
Even its best, so that you can reach an even higher level of it.
You have no need to travel anywhere. Journey within
yourself, enter a mine of rubies and bathe
in the splendor of your own light.
Don’t go anywhere I beg you, the moon
you are looking for is inside you.
Khalil Gibran had the right attitude:
A traveler I am, and a navigator, and every day
I discover a new region within my soul.
Apart in very practical situations, like when your must buy a bus or plane ticket,
I am going this country, I am going to that place.
But tell yourself instead:
Wherever I may go it can only be in the Mind of the Divine,
journeying in His Cosmic Dream.
Question/ko’han 1 and 2:
Which effect has usually traveling on you?
Question/ko’han 3 and 4:
All journeys have a secret destination of which
the traveler is usually unaware.
Which is your secret destination?
How do you plan reaching it?
According to Antonio Porchia,
Man goes nowhere: everything comes to man,
True or false?
The Buddha affirmed that
It is better to travel well than to arrive.
A Russian proverb said that all roads have two directions.
What does this mean, besides the obvious?
Dogen has the last word, which before remembering having read it in a Zen book Vijay though he had written it himself:
Never ask me where I am going: as I travel in this limitless world:every step I take is my own home.
What about your own steps?
1) Consider this passage of Osho:
We must travel in spite of all dangers and risks,
and the greatest risk is NOT to travel,
because then you are stuck, you don’t grow, you are like a stone, you will never flower. In traveling maybe you will go astray, you will commit mistakes.
So what? One learns through mistakes, one learns
through going astray.
2) Meditate on these hermetic words of Ella Maillart:
You do not travel if you are afraid of the unknown, you travel
for the unknown that reveals you
How will the unknown be revealed with yourself?
3) Follow Nisargadatta Maharaj’s advice:
If you are sincere, you need not go around. You are yourself everywhere
and create your own environment. Moving around
will not give you the salvation.
You are not the body and carrying it everywhere is useless.
You mind if free to vagabond in the three worlds –
use it fully.
Are you using it fully?
If not, why not?
– These words of Mère:
Those who live for Thee and in Thee may change their physical surroundings, their habits, climate, “milieu”, but everywhere they ﬁnd the same atmosphere;
they carry that atmosphere in themselves, in their thought constantly ﬁxed on Thee. Everywhere they feel at home, for everywhere
they are in Thy house.
No longer do they marvel at the novelty, unexpectedness, picturesqueness of things and countries; for them, it is Thy Presence that is manifest in all and Thy unchangeable splendor, which never leaves them, is apparent in the least grain of sand. The whole earth chants Thy praises;
in spite of the obscurity, misery, ignorance, through it all, it is still
the glory of Thy love which we perceive and with which
we can commune ceaselessly everywhere.
In this vast amazing world so many places have I seen,
landscapes, events and faces, of the same symphony
a different note each; but only by traveling within
unending wonder I found and all is always new.