In every Buddhist book you’d read that the place has nothing to do with happiness, and that it makes no difference whether you are up in Himalayas, or in Mokotow. All you need is to find THIS in yourself. Only the inner peace guarantees stability. Something that no one can take away from you. Something that will always be with you.
Not the inner peace but the fact that the place doesn’t matter!
If you are a Buddha or a Jesus already, then it may not matter. Although, if you’re still in process to become one – you need it. I need it. And I am sure I’m not alone here.
Plus if you are also not Buddha or Jesus – I hope you’re not feeling guilty that you don’t have your inner peace yet. For many years I believed what books and people were saying as if it were unconditionally true and…I’d feel guilty and bad about myself. And from time to time I had to go away to find myself, to think and to contemplate, to pull myself together.
I do know people for whom place is irrelevant but… usually these people live in exceptionally beautiful surroundings, close to nature and silence. None of them live in the city. I’m not saying that people like this don’t exist in the cities. I’m sure they do. I just don’t know them.
I knew, I felt differently when I was in different places but… at one point I realized how differently I was perceived by people in different places
‘Miss you IF you smile’ – this is a WhatsApp message I got from a guy who carried the luggage and was helping in a hotel in Bukit Lawang.
He doesn’t see me…just a WhatsApp messages… How does he know that I’m not smiling…that I am in a rush, in stress? That I keep running…
This cute language mistake made me realize why I need to go away from Warsaw so, why I need contact with nature so desperately. Why I miss the jungle and ocean… how much they change me and how much they transform my mentality even when I already back to the city jungle.
I had a look though my WhatsApp pics that I’ve sent to my friends for the past month.
I don’t even mean that in the first pictures I’m not smiling but… even if I am, it is a different kind of smile. My jaw is tense. I have this hustle in my eyes, and in my thoughts – heaps of emails that I need to respond to and the feeling of anxiety that I forgot about something. So even if I am smiling, you can tell it’s a different smile…
I understand that holidays and work cause such different feelings. I wasn’t on holiday, though. I was checking my emails and replying to them, as I always do. I read and corrected the rapports as well. I even talked to my colleagues and clients. In the end, when I found out we had more work to do, I extended my stay in Sumatra and spent a few days on doing what had to be done ASAP.
Same job, same computer, and same me but… a different location. What is it??? What is it in my Warsaw life that even through text messages I can feel that my smile is not entirely happy?
- There is Domaniewska where I often have meetings. This place is our Polish Wall Street where you just sense the corporation spirit. Where there is more ‘I must’, ‘I have to’ and ‘I should’ than ‘I want’, ‘I like’, ‘I need’. Here, without knowing the marketing English you won’t not be able to understand what people are chatting about on their cigarette break
There is always this sensation that you do too little and too slowly. That you have to push forward. Be more ambitious. Learn more, read more, write more. More, and more, and more…
- There is no time difference so there are more phone calls. Well, I do like talking… but in the end I spend more time with my iPhone than with my relatives. It’s more important to remember to charge my phone than call a friend I haven’t talked for weeks just to ask how is it going
- There is no problem with Wi-Fi so I’m constantly connected. If I disconnect, there are complaints that I’m not available. Or the big flow of messages later on, that it’s hard to dig them out. I don’t have self-discipline to restrain from checking, reading, looking through etc. I tried downloading programs that would block me from doing so, but I don’t think the Internet itself is the problem. I am the problem. The fact that I have a feeling like outsider, feel anxiety that if something happens – I won’t react on time. This is my problem.
I would like this to be true that the place doesn’t affect your happiness. But hey… for some reasons Mokotow or Downtown (Srodmiescie) are not monk’s favorite places and they’re not meditation centers. When I turn on my computer after seven hours offline and I have 170 emails to go through. I start to think: who should I smile to? To these emails, I guess…
The location does matter. When I feel stuck, as if I have grounded myself in there and I don’t see new perspectives, possibilities and there is no more potential – I HAVE TO leave that place. Moving around gives me space. It’s my rehab from the negative thoughts, adverse habits, and pointless actions. When I’m totally away from my daily life, different thoughts dominate inside my head. The pace of my breath is different. And my body pressure is as well.
One day I’ll become more spiritually mature, wiser and will have more calmness within me. Then, the location will not affect me. But for now, my great imperfection influences my sense of happiness. It is simply more effortless, smooth and unconditional when I’m close to nature.
Anyway, maybe thanks to these places, where unconditional is only Internet, I’m able to feel the difference? Maybe only this difference motivates me to make changes? Maybe this is the condition of my self-development and the reason why I learn how to fly? And not only how to manage answer my emails so nobody sees that I am doing it…