They excel in stillness. Sitting and watching. Waiting and listening. On the corner, on a chair outside the front door, at the gate to the garden.
Once I asked a Native American for a clue to the future. Am on on the right path I asked her?
She was supposed to be a seer of sorts and looked harshly into my eyes. Tell me about your life she said. So I told her about teaching and leading, about the emancipation of women and the poor, about trying to pass on knowledge and skills. She remained impassive.
I longed for some kind of reaction and so she said, “Yes, you are on your right path.”
That wasn’t what I wanted to hear. No. I wanted her to guide me, coax me, to soothe me onto some new path. I wanted her to have another answer. Like that I wasn’t on the right path at all, like that I was on the complete waste of time path!! I wanted to be rescued, found, understood. Maybe I just needed a big cry and a hug!!
But now I know, that I only have to be still; that questions are the nub of the whole thing; that there is no one answer and that we are all in the same leaky old boat.
And when I saw them, each one in such stillness, they left me wondering even more about striving and waste of time ambition.