Friday, July 22, 2011

It's all good.

Deeps, a visitor yesterday who commented on my blog on happiness wrote, Falling from a great height we CAN say we are flying, but that’s just positive attitude, it wont be too long before we meet with the reality!!

Ain't that the truth!

Hitting the ground, we wake up to the truth -- if we survive the crash.

But what of in our hearts and minds. What of in that place where the belief in our ability to fly supersedes the reality of the height of our perspective?

There is a man who drops in at the shelter where I work who loves to ride trains. He's not your 'Buy a ticket. Take a ride." kind of guy. He likes to hop on, where ever he can and sit on the rails between the cars, the earth flying past beneath him. The noise of the rails pounding in his head. He jostles for position, jamming his body down onto a span of metal, holding on, holding out on death, as he likes to call it.

"That's life man! Pushing yourself up against fate. Lettin' it all just hang. Puttin' it all on the line whenever you can."

In his thirties, he sees his life as continuing on, moving from place to place. He's part of a sub-culture I didn't know existed. They ride the rails. Tag rail cars and tunnels. Scream in the pitch black of tunnels, riding fast, living hard.

"This is the life man. I'm happy," he says.

I couldn't do it.

Too much terror. Too much uncertainty. Too much grit and grime and living hand to mouth. Too much of what in my judgements I perceive to be nothing other than nothing.

And I ask myself, is he really happy or is his happiness just an illusion? A construct of not knowing that life is more than challenging death every day?

And he asks. "How can you be happy working in an office everyday. Going to bed at night knowing you'll awake in the morning where you were last night?"

Happiness is all in our perspective. And who am I to judge his?

Perhaps it is in knowing, I can't live his life that I see the freedom to accept he must live his the way it is to be free.

For this man, his life statement is written across bridge abutments and rail cars. His statement is as transitory as his life, washed over by teams of workers dedicated to keeping the rail lines free of graffiti.

Hey man, at least they got a job because of me, he says. and he laughs. His loud raucous, deep from the roots of his joy laughter. "We're all connected man. I tag. They slag my tag. It's all good."

It's all good. What makes me happy is not what makes you happy. What brings me fulfillment is not what brings you fulfillment.

and so it should be.

It's all good.


Hope said...

very nice post Louise! It is interesting to get other perspectives on life isn't it? I guess the important thing to remember is not to not judge another in anyway and my favorite saying is 'don't knock it till you try it'
I don't think I'll ride the rails anytime soon though :)

'What makes me happy is not what makes you happy.'
perfectly said

Maureen said...

Not judge, certainly; but show alternatives and options and models of ways of thinking about things... yes.

There's a fatalism in his train-hitching but I think he sees the point of connection.

Have a great weekend.

Fi said...

Wow - synchronicity or coincedence. I haven't had a chance to read posts the last day or two.

Too many things to do and not enough hours. I posted about happiness tonight and arrive here and ahhhh - happiness.

Happiness posts but I can mention my favourite balinese saying 'same, same, but different'

I love that we think along similar lines so often.

Anonymous said...

my old bones would not do well with train jumping.

Jennifer Richardson said...

really fascinating post
thanks for the great share,