Why Be Needy?

I read the book “Etiquette of Freedom” and watched the companioned movie “The Practice of the Wild”. The topic was of Gary Snyder's works and life.

Snyder has been a strong influence on my view about understanding the space that you live in. Be it the soil under your feet, the street you live on or the woods that you hike through, understanding your surroundings and your impact on the environment is important.

This current work is a conversation between Snyder and Jim Harrison (an American author known for his poetry, fiction and essays). The conversation ranges from landscapes, Zen, poetry, human studies and reincarnation.

Snyder calls reincarnation a “charming metaphor”. I like his choice of words in describing the un-describable. For me I think of reincarnation as a romantic notion, getting to be all things at some point in our journey.

My favorite quote from the book is:

“So, why be needy? Why be looking for new experiences? Instead, let’s settle in and see what we can really think about now….we have already been every possible form already. So why be needy.” - Snyder

What I take away from the passage is – stop seeking and start noticing what is happening all around you. Do not search out new experiences, but take the time to notice all the things that are already arising within and all around you. That means that we can start living moments to their fullest.

That’s what enlightenment just might be...