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Beyond orthodoxies

I’m moving forward, but I’ve no idea where I’m going. It is as if the pieces of a huge and complex puzzle were suddenly falling into their place, with an astonishing obviousness, and the more they click, the easier it’s to fit others in. But I know that the overall design is not mine, like the puzzle itself, the pieces, all the rest: it’s pointed out to me, silently suggested, presented, exposed. Trying to add my own personal contribution, to assess, to ponder, simply slows down the coming together of the whole. It’s not that I lost the ability to think critically about what I’m doing, but the inner urge to do this or that doesn’t come from that critical faculty. It’s not a decision taking shape at the reflective level. It’s just there, somewhere deeper, waiting for me to catch up.

It’s bizarre, scary, but also beautiful. I wrote the full draft of the new book (Lo Yoga di Spinoza / Spinoza’s Yoga) in six days. I’ve started translating Spinoza’s Ethics into Italian. I didn't plan the book at all, and I didn't really want to do a new translation. Yet, they seemed to be demanded, they were somehow calling, even if I do not fully see why. I’ve also readjusted my own practice and I’m currently exploring how to refine it further, in ways that I’m discovering as I proceed. These are just examples.

The most difficult part of the deal is that I can’t really stick to anything just because I (think or pretend to) know it. I’m hanging around with Spinoza, yes, but this is a rather new Spinoza, who writes in Latin but thinks in Sanskrit. I’m exploring tantric non-dual meditations and sources, but always finding echoes of the teachings I learned from the discourses of the Buddha. It’s not just a naive syncretism or eclecticism. I’m not verging towards some sort of philosophia perennis. I don’t know where I’m going, but it is clear that I’m beyond any possible orthodoxy.

So often I see people practising for the sake of meeting the desiderata of a particular school, lineage, tradition, master - real or fictional, it doesn't matter. It seems to be all about meeting a certain standard in order to be rewarded with recognition and acceptance. This is very human - all too human. I've been there all my life (as a pianist, as an academic, as a meditator, as a yogi, as a human being, in all sorts of ways). But now it's completely different. I don't know what the standards are. I don't even know if there are standards anymore. What I'm doing is not for the sake of conforming to something that's already given and just needs to be embodied. Rather, I'm following a thread of intuition, with the tacit promise that I'll go where it takes me, without questioning it, just trying to follow it to the best of my ability.

Maybe this will result is some complete failure or disaster. Maybe it will remain a weird experiment of a weirder guy. Maybe it will bring about something good. I feel I’m not entitled to worry or even ask about which scenario is the most likely, and that none of this is really my business.

Why am I here, in this? I have no clues, really. It's not something I was looking for, it's something that seems to have found me. I know that I could step back and leave this game. But why? What would I gain if I did not fall back into the comforting norm of this or that orthodoxy?

Obviously I'm not finished. Whatever I'm doing now, it's only the beginning. But even now, at this time of dawn, there is such an immense thrill of freedom, so deep and seductive, so silent and stronger than all the fears and superficial noise coming from around. Even if it's not a promise (because I can't see exactly what it is being promised, by whom and to whom), it seems right, good, true and beautiful - if only as a sleeping secret. Who am I to say no?

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