"Why Camest Thou?"
From Aurobindo's "Savitri:”
“This ignorant life beneath indifferent skies
Tied like a sacrifice on the alter of Time,
O spirit, O immortal energy,
If 'twas to nurse grief in a helpless heart
Or with hard tearless eyes await thy doom?
Arise, O soul, and vanquish Time and Death."
Sounds good to me. I need to arise.
I had several days last week when I didn't just feel tied down, but tortured. In dealing with a difficult decision, I let my mind get the best of me, I ignored everything that I know to do with such events, and I hardly slept at all for several days. I can be so insane.
I think Terry would agree that I try not to involve others in my craziness but will seek time to be alone and crazy all by myself. Generally, I do everything I can to avoid projecting my craziness onto others but that doesn't diminish the level of "doom" I experience. After a couple of days of self-torment and forcing myself into morning and nightly meditation, I calmed down. And in the middle of one of the meditations, I remembered the first line. "Why camest thou to this dumb deathbound earth?"
The world in which we live is plagued with difficulty. The entire world is engrained with conflict. There are planetary difficulties but there are individual difficulties in which each individual bears the unique framework of his own suffering, his own path. But make no mistake about it. All paths, rich or poor, will reflect the individual struggle. But is this the reason you "camest?"
No, that cannot possibly be the reason. If it were, why would anyone want to be here? Did you come here to live an "ignorant life?" Of course not. But let's be real. When I am involved in self-torture, in allowing my mind to become trapped in an repetitive cycle of self-defeating thoughts, I am living an ignorant life. And when you're in your crazy stuff, you are living an ignorant life, too.
"Arise, O soul, and vanquish Time and Death." The statement contains the confirmation that transcending time and death is available, that rising above our individual difficulties is not only real but is available. If it is, then how do I do that?
The last line and the first line are inextricably interwoven. If you know the answer to the first line, you know the answer to the last line. But if you don't know the answer to the first line (basically, why are you here?) then you cannot execute the last line which reveals the way out of the suffering.
So, what is the answer to the question: "Why camest thou to this dumb deathbound earth?" And when you know, you will arise. Little by little. Day by day. Even moment by moment. Sometimes, in difficult events, breath by breath. But you will arise. And the transformation of your, and the entire, "dumb deathbound earth" will begin.