Making a Choice


One can look at one’s living situation as a reflection of the values you are optimizing or maximizing. And it’s important that you do that. A lot of people just end up for one reason or another in a living situation and then are too frightened or too insecure to consider alternatives.

For example, I play golf and I often end up at these funny communities that were built around a golf course. I can’t imagine they’d sit behind any of the glass walls in their houses. I can’t imagine it, not with somebody like me playing! Anyway, the houses line the golf course, and the whole thing has been built around the identity of golf. Now, I can vouch for the fact that golf is addictive, but I can’t imagine creating a social structure that would have me hanging out with golfers all the time. I mean, that would be a terrible deprivation state (I’ll pay for that I’m sure!) but it would be.

If I am going to make my choice, I’m going to be around people like you. I’m going to be around people who really want to be reflective of the way they live their lives. And I’d like to be living among them, and I’d like to be sharing a social community with them. I don’t want that to be the only part of my life, but I certainly am going to look at how I’m organizing my life. Who I’m living with, how I’m living and what I am doing with my time and space.

Now you also have to look at the issues of privacy, loneliness and aloneness. Learn how to be comfortable with aloneness, and not keep defining it as loneliness and realize that while your incarnation, your ego, is a socially derived construct, your soul is not.

Your meditation practice is done in order to bring you back into your soul identity, where you can recognize that we are all alone, but you’re only lonely if you’re caught down in ego. I like living with other and I like living alone, each one has a different set of factors you give up and you get.

Examine your social structures and look to see what you need at this point in your life and how you can reorganize your world in order to create the space to give you support without doing violence to all the scenes you’re in. There are a lot of scenes where you have built upon certain contracts that to negotiate the contract unilaterally is going to cause a lot of violence. And that violence, well, you can’t build a peaceful scene on the violence of others. You’ve got to figure out how to renegotiate the contract or how to say, “This is the contract, now I’ve got to work within the contract, because I don’t really have the option to change the contract.” You’ve got to really play with those issues about contractual stuff.


-Ram Dass


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