Espe mentioned the other day how she couldn’t believe how many people are traveling. There are so many westerners everywhere we go. I can believe it. What I can’t believe is how young so many of them are. We are meeting 17 and 18 year olds who haven’t even started Uni yet. Just over hearing conversations (normally having no choice – why do people go to an internet cafe only to spend an hour nattering with the person next to them?) I realised how different I am to many of these people. Without wanting to sound snobbish, most of that I guess is through age and experiences. Most of my friends are older than me so this is the first time I’ve ever felt old. Occasionally I meet a young ‘un who has interesting things to say, but generally it is just dull (how drunk they were, what drugs they are trying). The people who have really left an impression on me are the same age or older.
Giving this some more thought, it occurred to me that we are learning each day. It may not be much but every little counts. But how often do we actually sit down with the intention of leaning something new. This is something I’m trying to focus on now. I’m currently trying to teach myself how to play chess and learning about Buddhism via Damien Keown’s “Buddhism, A Very Short Introduction”. The following jumped out at me:
In the hustle and bustle of everyday life few stop to ponder the most fulfilling way to live. The Buddha thought that the highest form of live was one which led to the development and virtue and knowledge and the Eightfold Path, which comprises the of three categories Wisdom, Ethical Conduct and Meditation, sets forth a way of life designed to bring these to fruition.
Check out www.thebigview.com to see the Eightfold Path in detail.
I think they could be onto something here and I’ll tell you more when I return from a 10 day meditation retreat at Wat Suan Mokkh.