The other night as I was making my way home, I popped open HopStop to check the timing of the subway. I rarely need the app for navigation purposes, but it does come in handy at times. As I scrolled down to check the times, there was a “Planned Service Change” notice. It read, “HopStop will no longer be available starting October 2015.” Huh?!
A quick Google search told me that Apple bought the app for a billion dollars back in July. Adroid or Microsoft operating systems probably know this as the app has already disappeared. By October, it will disappear off my phone as well. I had a moment of disappointment (I like the app), but have quickly moved to another to get the answers I need.
Losing the app got me wondering why we rely on so many external sources for our navigation. I giggle sometimes watching people look at their phone trying to find where they are going. They often look more lost than if they just looked around to see where they were. I want to shout, “Hey People. You’re missing it! It’s up here!” But, I’m not talking about how to get to the Empire State Building.
I recently read a quote from Jeff Foster, “You could probably boil all your suffering down to this: ‘I want to control this moment but I cannot!!!’” We seem so careful now. We want every step planned, calculated, and mapped out. And sadly, it’s all only an illusion of control. Are we so afraid of a misstep? Are we so afraid of getting lost? What’s gone wrong that the answers from outside sources factor more heavily in our directions than our own gut?
Michael Stone says that the transcendence of duality is simply not knowing. How freeing is that? To NOT know! Our practice tells how to become curious and investigative. It allows to explore without having to know the answers. Our practice also teaches us how to look at the doubt, worry, and indecision so we have the opportunity to flex and strengthen our inner compass. The inner compass that is always pointing towards love, compassion, and kindness, and we become comfortable in taking a misstep. We become comfortable with the possibility of getting utterly lost. We become at ease with not knowing and still trust in finding OUR way.
As I write this, I read a brief interview with Laurie Anderson on Tricycle about her upcoming show in New York. It seems perfectly apropos here. She says, “For me, the most inspiring teaching of the Buddha is: Don’t believe anybody, including the experts, even if they’re angels. Open your eyes and look for yourself.”
The path is not always clear. So, get lost! Sometimes not knowing, not knowing where you’re going, is a wonderful thing.