What I am about to describe has two possible approaches but one presupposed and unavoidable beginning: each of you, each adult that is, is the lead actor in the play of your life. Irrespective of how you might argue the point, you write the words, you direct the entrances and exits, you outline the plot, and you decide when the curtain rises and falls. That is the point of being alive after all, isn’t it? You make a life for yourself and point your finger in a particular direction. Even if you believe that you do not, you still do, it is just that your techniques and strategies for denying such a statement are a little more sophisticated than the ordinary; but I still put it to you that the position you find yourself in is not a direct result of events out of your control, but that you still outline the plot and are, irrespective of what you might say, comfortable about where you find yourself.
As a result of your pathwalking you might find sooner or later that you become less and less interested in your play. It may be that you really couldn’t care less about the actors and how they say their lines – you are indifferent to their skills and their petty tantrums concerning your plot lines and instructions – and notice that the audience who attend each night are actually the same members of the audience that attended the night before. You cannot really be bothered with their opinions and feedback any more and the takings for the night are no longer a matter of concern. You might decide to close the production down or simply wander out of the theatre and never return.
In the second instance it simply happens that one morning you awake and realise that you have been asleep, watching a dream created in your own mind, but having awoken to realise that it was a dream and, as you wash and dress, the events that occupy your mind have completely obliterated the narrative of your dream and the present moment – eating your breakfast, making your way to work – now occupy your thoughts completely.
It seems to me that instead of being the principle actor, director and writer of your life, it is as if you now become a bit-part actor in a play that is not written by you, not directed by you, in which the script is often not even delivered to you beforehand, and there is absolutely no idea about the plot and its beginning or end.
This is the path of surrender. The games, strategies, beliefs, ideas, worries and concerns that were your persistent companions during your sojourn in the theatre have become no more than a peripheral distant impression with little impact on the life that you now lead. You have become a whole human being that looks up with awe and mystery and fear at the universe above your head.
And it is very difficult to say a single word about it.