Around the World - Departure!
Trip Start Jul 08, 2007
143Trip End Ongoing
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This is the question I asked myself while looking at the landscape
slowly changing as I was going from NYC to Arizona, on my 2 days bus
tour across the USA. I have been working so hard for so long, that it
seemed almost unreal that I was finally following my dream. That
dream that I first had when I was about 16 years old, traveling alone
for the first time. All of my life, I have followed a path drawn in
front of me: from my family, to school, to creating my own company and
to my relationships. Of course, I was always the master of my life and
could have ultimately decided to change anything I wanted and was
unhappy with. But reality is never that simple. Soon our choices
become our reality and we soon forget that we have the power and right
to make things the way we really want them to be. We accept so many
things for granted that we are left with so few to fight over, in the
search for our freedom, our identity and our individuality. We sadly
often become the architects of our own demise, of our own sufferings.
In the attempt to answer this question, a normal reaction would be to look
into my past and see how I have done it so far. After all, our brain
does it all the time, it's called matching patterns I think. So I
tried to go back time and put into perspective the big steps that have
occurred in my life: my birth, my youth, my school years, my company
and now. All of this, in search for a recurrent pattern or at least a glimpse of
one. It was difficult at first as all of those steps are intertwined
and sometimes hard to breakdown, but it contained all of the memories I
would need. After days of reflection, what I came to realize is that
there are 4 main steps involved in the creation of any project or
reality. The first step is imagination, the second step is
planning, the third step is walking the path or experiencing that
creation and the fourth step is closure, which I will talk only in
perspective of the other three.
All of my life, I have been dreaming of the perfect world, of adventures,
of love, of life, of heroic actions, of fantasies and much more.
Dreaming is very important, because without dreaming, we have nothing
to reach, no ideal, nothing. Einstein said and I quote: "Imagination is
more important than knowledge". How can we build a world for all
of us to be well and happy without a unifying vision?
For me, traveling around the world had
been a dream for very long: experiencing all the cultures, exploring
the different perspectives, seeing all the sceneries, and in each of
them, rediscovering myself for the first time. It's been a dream
because I have grown up pretty quickly responsibilities wise and during
a certain part of my life, that project seemed like a pretty distant
possibility. However, I have never let go and although I had to put it
aside as a possible short term experience for a long time, it was
always in my heart, sleeping, waiting for the right moment to come back
to life. Imagination is therefore powerful; it can change the course of
history, give hope to those who have lost it and bring all humans
together in setting up the future they want to live in.
To everything there is a good and a bad side. Those are perspectives
only I admit, but they are certainly opposites ones which is all that
matter here. In this way, imagination can then change into fantasy
which in turn can change into escape. We all do that and we don't
always realize how dangerous it can be. We all have fantasies that help
us go through our every day life: thinking about fun activities I could
do instead of my work, looking forward to see my loved ones later, thinking about my
coming vacation, or a future project, or a new purchase, etc. The danger
resides in the intentions of our fantasy which are often guided
by fear. Yoda said: " Fear leads to Anger. Anger leads to
Hate. Hate leads to suffering". Escaping can therefore become
very damageable if we are not aware of it. And so, to think of
something wonderful to make us go through difficult moments is in
itself not bad, but abusing of it can, in the long run, become very
disruptive. To another level, the use of drugs, alcohol and all other
addictive substances, actions and experiences are in link with escape.
I am not necessarily against all of those, as they can also open
consciousness doors inside of us that could have never been opened
otherwise, but when they eventually become a means of escaping, we soon
need to realize that the fantasy has turned from its original form and will soon
lead to much worst.
In the closure of my old world, I must say that escaping became
very tempting. It would have been so easy and probably at some
point healthier, to say F**k it, I am out of here. So easy it is to cut
bounds, links and to turn into a radical thinking pattern, such as a
Sith Lord or as the current President of the USA said a little while
ago concerning his Axis of Evil. "If they are not with us, they are
against us". We will all one day face who we are inside of our heart
and "pay" for what we have done. We may as well do it a little bit
every day and be at peace with ourselves. We should focus on
remembering why we started our everyday fights in the first place, keep
our head up and fully honor and go through the challenges given to
us. Gandalf said in the Lord of The Rings and I quote: "All you
have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to you".
We should take advantages of each mistake we make to help ourselves
getting free of our fears. Frank Herbert put it beautifully in
his famous Sci-Fi books Frank Herbert, Dune:
"I must not fear.
Fear is the mind-killer.
I will face my fear.
I will permit it to pass over me and through me.
And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path.
Where the fear has gone there will be nothing.
Only I will remain"
And so for me, I did not want to partly feel disappointed later on for
quitting at the very end of the road and at the same time dropping so
many people who counted on me. But mainly, I realized that I had a lot
to learn still and that fight was probably as important as any other
fight I had undertaken before, if not more important. It
contained the seed of each of years I have had my company and it was going to
give me the opportunity to fix everything that has gone wrong during
that time, mainly frustration towards myself. And so I worked
hard making sure that there was not an ounce of escape in the closure
of my previous world.
Once you feel your dream close enough to be palpable, how do you go on
about it? How do you know when it is going to start? How do you know
it's even what you wanted in the first place? How do you reassure
yourself that even though you are going against most of your world
normality and standards, that's really a sane and right thing to do?
And once you know all of this, how can you truly plan it? Of course you
can take a pencil and paper and start a plan. Such as a dissertation
or a business plan, everything can be planned and in many cases should
be planned. And so I though at first I needed a pretty precise plan of
everything I was going to experience and live. Book most my
transportations ahead of time and make sure I would not loose one
opportunity to learn something, meet someone new and grow a thousand
fold from this experience. This is pretty much how I have traveled
before and so why would this time be any different? Then from my head
hurting and spinning I realized that all of this planning was first
initiated to appease my mental, make sure I was safe, that everything
had been thought through and that I would be an efficient traveler. Ah
Efficiency! For every businesses or civilizations to strive, they need
to be well organized and efficient, no doubt. However, we are becoming
so focused on efficiency, that we often forget the experience itself.
We are happy about our results, we get acknowledgment from our
colleagues, clients and employees, we accomplish so much but we cannot
really remember how we felt throughout this process, throughout a
specific moment during our good or bad day. It's as if our own life was
put aside and we became robots, here to execute tasks and assess of our
successes from an analytical point of view only, with no regards upon
the process itself and the joy of it. I have been one of these people
for years and although it brought me "clairvoyance" in my professional
life, it often sucked out most of the joy and fun of it.
Even though I was going to make mistakes, touch danger, lack
efficiency, be afraid and often feel VULNERABLE, I did not want to
create the same stressful environment as before and I wanted a world where
everything could happen, especially everything I could not plan or
think of. We are often so stressed out about bad things happening
to us and breaking our apparent calm and inner peace that we put many
fences around us, attack others on their land, identity and
individuality; all of this in the name of Protection: protection of
ourselves, of our loved ones and of our countrymen. This is where
I believe our western civilization and in many cases men have failed
and it is what we need to be very conscious of right now if we are to
survive. We need to let go of control and trust our intuitions,
our feelings. Its going to hurt at first, but this is also going
to mean freedom. Freedom from our crazy mental that can only
think of controlling everything it can. Freedom from those
oppressing us with their paranoid minds, making our world a more
stressful and dangerous place to live everyday. Freedom from
misery and suffering. Freedom that nourishes our every day life
with Real substance and Real sense. And so I
purposefully did not plan my trip. I only had a global idea where
I was going, as for the rest I left it to how I would feel, who I would
meet and who I would become. I really wanted to make sure I did
not put another rigid structure on top of my head and that everything
remained always possible. How could I find myself and hope to
understand the world, by deciding ahead of time how I would do
it? Doing so would have meant that I could have foreseen the future,
which I can't. And in the same way, how could I have precisely
plan my comeback (from my trip) as I don't know who I will remember I am? It's
pretty scary at the same time, not knowing where I am going and what to
expect. However, this unknown or void quickly became a fantastic
inner source of information to know what I am afraid of, the nature of
my intentions, what are my auto-destructive patterns and give me the
opportunity to see who I am at any given time.
And so here I am, with a very unclear plan not really knowing where I
am going, putting my faith in life to guide me. My courage is
sometimes high, sometimes low, but one thing is certain, I want a world
in which I can feel and experience the every day reality. The
world is so much more complex than what we could ever comprehend.
In order to reach a glimpse of that reality level, we must let go of
control and detached ourselves from what we consider our reality.
I want this new world to be how I remembered my first kiss, the first
time I put on ice skates, the first time I traveled by myself and
basically, any first time I did something. Only then was my mind
pure, untouched by too many concepts, unbiased. I want to
remember this child naivety, this state of consciousness where there is
only us, not all of our fears and expectations taking all the
place. This is however very difficult because of all those years
of abuse. So many things still need to be changed within me to
get there. But every day I get up and force myself to remember
how things really are. I force myself to be in the present
moment, trying to be conscious of as many actions, intentions and
feelings that I can. It's a little similar to the Vipassana Meditation
I attended to several weeks ago. At first, your legs hurt so much
you feel they are going to break apart. But if you manage to
detach yourself from the pain and remain equanimous, you start to
transcend this pain into an all new reality. And so you get on the
right path to find out who you truly are, behind your multiple masks.
Only at the end of this road will I know for certain what I came here
to find, but the fun and personal growth are acquired by walking the
path, they are not in the final step or in the final answer. May
I be able to access and understand my reality and mold it's impact on
me as I go, enabling me to be my own creator :)