I learned a lesson in non-attachment the other day. Newton, my dog, had decided to get it on with my 10-year Bonsai; needless to say my old green friend lost the fight. While I looked in horror at my uprooted friend a flash on anger suddenly overtook me.
I swallowed hard, reminding myself that at 4 months this was more the work of a puppy dog than that of a tree murdering grown canine. One look at his dirt filled face broke me, I could not take it out on him. What purpose would it serve? What lesson would be taught?
I looked down; defeated I started to re-plant my Bonsai…fucking dog…I thought to myself.
Days later, I happened to be reading a book by Elizabeth Kübler-Ross called “The Wheel of Life”; in it I found one of her stories that opened my eyes to the real lesson behind my friend’s demise.
The 6th of October, 1994; this brave woman’s house was burned to the floor. Her father’s journals, her papers and personal diaries, 20.000 case histories of her life’s work, photographs, clothes, everything. It was burned out of hatred and ignorance against a person that was courageous and compassionate enough to work with children with AIDS.
She could have hated the World; she could have wallowed in pain, rightfully so, and taken vengeance against those that wronged her. Instead, she found a lesson to be learned. Realizing that it served no purpose to deny the loss, she accepted it. She reasoned that what was lost was only material objects and that no matter how dear they were to her, they were nothing compared to the value of life.
She would not be denied, nor could she be beaten down.
Days after the fire she went into town, bought a set of clothes and prepared herself to whatever life could throw at her…that was her legacy.
It’s hard to see beauty in things like this. In my case; I know my Bonsai will grow back again, its roots are strong. Maybe its Life’s way of whispering in my ear…that everything is subject to change.