Journal Entry – Mon Sep 28

I sat by my phone waiting for my doctor to call, same like you would wait in anticipation for a lover. Pathetic! I am still waiting, I will have to call them in the morning.

I did some reading and watched two lectures from my course, I’ve been thinking on what I wanna write about – nothing yet. Oh, I also read a long article in the NYT about the American President and his taxes, not as long as the 2018 story but just as good. I also watched a short documentary about the journalist behind the story.

I noticed that Crave doesn’t show the release year on any shows/movies and they don’t have captions – silly. That’s so basic. Maybe I am missing a setting or maybe it’s because I am using Samsung app, I will give them the benefit of the doubt until I am sure.

We have 700 new cases of COVID – I think the highest reported since March. They are closing bars and restaurants earlier too, midnight I think.

If you had a ring of invisibility where you would be totally undetected, would you do good things with it or bad, maybe a bit of both like a modern day Robin Hood? Is it alright to rob the rich to give to the poor? Technically, in Robin Hood, the poor are being robbed by the rich in the first place so you might not even consider Robin to be bad. – The ring of invisibility is from the Republic by Plato but you will also recognize it from Lord of the Rings if you’ve seen the movies.

Do you know the story about The man in the Well?

Well (hehe) … this guy was searching for a new home and he got lost in the suicide forest in Japan (I’m joking). He got lost in the woods and while he was lost he encountered a wild elephant and a female demon and they started chasing him, so he is running for his life, looking for a place to hide. He tries to climb a tree but the tree is way too tall and wide, he can’t even jump to the first branch. Then luckily, he sees a well in the distance, all the while the elephant and the demon are gaining on him …

He doesn’t even think – he runs and jumps head first into the well – on his way down, he’s like, “oh shit, I don’t even know if there is water at the bottom of this well, I could crack my skull open.” (he didn’t actually say that). So he reaches for the wall trying to grab the vines. Success!!! He’s hanging on for his life and he realized there are snakes at the bottom of the well and one snake has his mouth open really wide like he is just waiting for dude to fall in. At the opening of the well he can hear the elephant and the demon circling and the elephant is trying to knock the well down – There is nowhere for him to go and to make matters worse, he looks up and sees rats nibbling at the vine he is holding on to …

Through all of this commotion, a beehive falls on his head (OMFG – do you feel bad for this guy or what?) Now he is being stung by bees, pursued by a demon lady and a crazy elephant, and the likelihood of him getting swallowed by the huge snake at the bottom of the well is high because the rats are still biting the vine. But then the honey touches his lips – The smell and the taste of the honey is intoxicating and he forgets about his plight and all he can think is, “Damn, this is the best honey ever. I wonder if it is honey from wildflowers. How can I get more? Yum, yum, yum!”

This is my spin, but this parable has various versions in Jainism and Buddhism and also in the Mahabharata (which if I recall, is related to the Hinduism) Anyway, this story is about samsara, the cycle of death and rebirth. Being lost in the forest represents samsara.

The man, is a representation of us being trapped in this cycle. The elephant is death, the demon is old age and disease. The tree that he couldn’t climb represents liberation from samsara where death and disease and old age cannot get to him. The well represents the human condition and what it means to be a person who hasn’t been liberated from the cycle. The snakes are desires, attachments, passions and aversions – The big snake that is waiting to gobble him up represents the hellish rebirth we are heading towards if things don’t take a turn for the better, and this is worse than being in the well BTW. The vine is the limited time we have on earth and the rats are the loss of that time. The bees represent our pains and everyday struggles and the honey is the satisfying pleasures that distract from our struggles/troubles.

The honey is not good because it distracts us from the seriousness and urgency of the situations we find ourselves in, like Facebook or Instagram or reality TV 🙂 The dark side isn’t only about immorality and evil, or dark thoughts and other crazy shit that goes on in our heads, it is about suffering and those places we find ourselves in as human beings as part of the human condition.

(Source: The Great Courses – Understanding the Dark Side of Human Nature)

Yesterday André said he would go to school – I was sooooo happy. This morning I tried waking him up – unsuccessful. He ended up leaving the house at around 2:30 pm – He said he didn’t want to see any students. smh. I’m glad he got out of bed, got dressed and left the house. Fingers crossed for tomorrow. I told him I’m happy he went out, and he gave me a thumbs up 🙂

The fruit fly trap is working – it took more than three days but there’s about five of them in there now. I’m impatient.

I can’t find the right lentils to make dal makhani and so far, I am suspicious of the recipes online cause I don’t remember kidney beans in my favorite restaurant’s version. I would really love some with garlic naan right now.

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