by Robert Wilkinson
A long time ago I began to wonder what advanced learning I should attempt. It led me through many metaphysical and spiritual arenas, as well as more practical ones, like producing a lot of cultural events and creating a field hospital for Willie Nelson taking care of 150,000 people in the withering heat of the Texas Summers. After fulfilling a lot of things, it then led me to wilderness solos in all kinds of places like the Rocky Mountains and the deserts of the Southwest, New York City to Mexico City doing my prayers and my dharma.
Through it all I wondered if I’d ever make it “Back To School,” a funny movie as well as a legitimate question for all of us at one point and another in our lives. I spent many years examining the question from an angle of what I should train for in the future, in terms of what could be true for me in the future where I might serve myself, others, and the Higher Truth of my Being. Obviously that was different then than now, though it took me a few years to figure that out. And I am still reminded of it every day.
Throughout this journey I always knew that while I had to imagine something I could really get into, “my bliss,” it had to be a practical skill where I could learn something useful. It had to have a worthwhile purpose and function. It had to be something the world would need that would pay me for a skill I would want to cultivate for the rest of my life. And I knew it had to be something that would be natural for me. It could never be boring, stifling, or confining, or I would never want to continue it for very long.
It also had to be a craft where I could make some great relationships with some great people, both in school and afterwards. Every thing we do has its inhabitants, and those affect the atmosphere in which “we live, do, and have our Being.” That’s why, as we are told, it is important to sojourn only with good people, so we can go our way without difficulty. That’s why it is important to be mindful of what we choose to learn, since every vector yields its challenges and its victories.
Tonight is truly a victory for me, a “final” like few others in my life. It is quantifiable and definitely a worthy effort resulting in a significant victory and certification of what I have learned and accomplished over a significant period of my life. I am more able and competent than I was, as a result of long and concerted effort at personal knowledge for its own sake, but also for a larger work, the mystery of which will unfold over time and experience.
The community I found was excellent. Some volunteered while others came along without effort or motive. Those that showed up enjoyed the party. Most of the relationships were amazing, since all we meet are the quilt of life itself, the joy of connectedness with our fellow beings on this fragile and impermanent Earth. I found some great people in my recent quest that I hope will be my friends for a long time. One way or another, I know that Karma will bring us all together again.
So on this moment of fulfillment, of triumph over inertia and past patterns, I welcome you all to remember that you also can choose anew. We can choose to re-envision who we are and want to be. In every moment we all are as good as we are, here and now. And we have the power to choose what future we will pursue and, with perseverance, attain.
We can always choose to renew and follow our Higher vision. We all are, to some degree, choosing to renew every day, every hour, every moment we are here on this fragile Earth. Remember – you are a superstar. You cannot remember when you were not. You cannot imagine when you will not be. You are Eternal.