Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Surfing Life's Waves

In his book Conquest of Mind, Eknath Easwaran compares life to an ocean whose waves we can learn to surf with an expert’s skill acquired through experience tempered with meditation and other key elements of a viable spiritual practice. He writes in his introduction of watching two surfers. One is an expert who rides the waves with effortless grace. The other is a beginner who is awkward and keeps getting thrown from his board but gets back up and tries again and again, improving a little each time as he applies the lessons learned from his previous attempts. It’s a beautiful metaphor.

But I suspect that just as I would be the surfer unable to learn from his mistakes and prone to repeating those mistakes until I either gave up in frustration or was crippled or drowned before I could give up, so I fear that my efforts to surf the ocean of life would meet the same fate. Is this the primary reason why I don’t even try?

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