by Nick Andrea
Ultimately, every moment is unsatisfactory. This is the unspoken subtext of everything that happens in the world. What this means is that nothing we do or have will satisfy us forever – not the relationship, not the career, not even our hobbies. Sooner or later we get tired of it all. Why? Because it’s all karma, which means it’s all conditioned.
Everything we do or have is the product of something we have done in the past. It’s like gardening; you plant a seed, you get a fruit. You say, “That makes sense for bad stuff, like stealing money, but what about good stuff? What about my purpose in life? Surely, that can’t be conditioned.”
However, even though I feel I have a purpose – such as, “I help adopted children find good homes” – this is still karma. It is merely the unripened seed of something I did in the past that needs to now be fulfilled and once it is, the passion will go away.
My real purpose has nothing to do with the form it takes in the outer world. I could work at a fish processing factory and be more connected to my real purpose than someone helping adopted children find good homes. If I invest all your happiness in what’s going on outside of me, that is to say, the world of form, I will eventually become unhappy. Form changes. Now I call myself an adoption agent. However, one day I might call myself an airline pilot. If I am attached I will suffer when it changes, and it will.
“Okay,” you say. “That’s a bit hard to swallow but it makes some sense.” So, what is the remedy to this dissatisfaction? Read on to Part II for my answer.