The Rich Vegetarian

An Examined Life

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Invisible

These days, it seems like I am tending to borderline invisibility.

My boundary (L-A-K-S-H-M-I) seems to be wearing thin. If I don’t hold myself together, I feel like pieces of me may float right out into the ether. This isn’t about incoherence or feeling spacey. It is a disconnect from the public facing identity that, in my case, is always on the point of breaking away. It is a veneer that is dangerously see-through. Sometimes, it is misleading/ambiguous (not intentionally).

There are the people with strong, healthy, defined egos. They are independent, seeking no validation whatsoever. Then there are the unhealthy ones that feed off others for survival, like vampires. Then there are the in-betweens, like me. It is a thin veil, and there is little motivation to keep it intact. There is little attachment between the inner layer and the outer apparel, so it feels effortless to ditch the outerwear and float off.

Community – Yes, No

“Ahh, it’s that time of the year when it’s all about community.”

“What do you mean?”

“Well, just look at Facebook. All those pictures from Garba, Navaratri, Durga Puja, etc… Everyone’s part of some community. A religious one, or a spiritual one, a cultural group, a social organization.”

“Ok.”

“But I am not part of a community.”

“Sure, you are.”

“No, I am not. I am connected to individuals but I am not part of a community.”

“That’s not true. I am sure that many consider you part of the community.”

“Well, it does not matter because I don’t see myself as part of it. The reason being, I don’t identify with the values of the community any more. So I can’t see myself as being part of it.”

“Hmmm, do you want to be part of it?”

Silence.

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And Life Exists Where?

And where does life exist, really?

In the daily routines and rituals,
checklists and calendars and errands and shopping lists,
weekend classes, gym schedules, drop off and pick up, buy milk and groceries and bread.

time to meet friends and family, it is Diwali and then Christmas

In the chopping of vegetables and taking out of trash,
cooking and cleaning and dishes and laundry and lawn tasks.

In marking time on iPhones and paper desk calendars and Outlook.

Or in the endless time stretching infinitely in my mind, in my head,
Wondering where the waves go, the seas part, the wind drops, and the birds call out
Wondering about the horizon and the space it spans, the sky and the blue depths above and below.

the quiet beaches in my mind, miles of sand, not a soul around

thoughts arise and subside, the elements bearing witness to my endless ideas and imaginations,

and then it’s back to chopping vegetables again.

Is it in between, in both, nowhere?

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