Adrift

It is ironic that only one month ago, I was working in a Government unit that monitored and approved funding for Centrelink. Last week, I registered as a Centrelink job seeker. One month ago, I was netting over $1000 per week and now I have no income. Centrelink, New Start allowance is not available for 6-8 weeks. I had to transfer funds from my credit account to my savings account.

Last week, I went to the Spearwood Centrelink Office several times before I was interviewed. They are very busy with many clients and not enough staff. The Office exterior is very bleak. Some clients could be heard shouting abuse as they left the building. Once I found someone had smashed rotten eggs over the front door. I admire the Centrelink Office staff for their patience and good will. It may be possible for them to find less stressful work. I suppose they do these jobs because they want to help the community.

Good news from the Canberra Real Estate agent who said someone will take over the lease at 18 Gillespie Street on Friday, 17 September. I hope to get some of the rental bond back the following week.

I have a job interview next week. I’ve applied for many temporary full-time jobs but this is the only interview so far. I am confident I will get a job soon. I have good qualifications and experience.

Since finding I didn’t have as much money as I thought and being away from my recent home and habits, I find myself slightly adrift. I’ve stayed on track by focusing on the intermediate goal traveling to meditate. To achieve that goal I will find temporary work and save money. This entails living simply and not gathering a lot of new furniture and other gear. In fact, I could even give away or throw out some of the remaining stuff.

I’ve been a bit distracted in mind lately. Although preparing job applications and helping around the house doing cooking and cleaning for Mum, I am not so focussed on Dhamma as I was when living in Canberra. Or at least that is how it seems to me now. May be there is little difference except the location.

At random times throughout the day such as walking to the shops, driving Mum’s car or in the back yard, I note the breathing and get a sense that I’m drinking pleasure and happiness. It is a nice feeling though not one that I try to recreate or become attached to.

A few months ago, I read Ven. Ledi Sayadaw excellent book “Requisites for Enlightenment” who wrote about a traveling down the river metaphor adrift in a small boat. You can read this online if you search for it with Google Book Search.

I’ve paraphrased it differently to the book. A person is traveling down the river in a small boat at night looking for safe places to stop. As the boat drifts on currents the person can not see any places of safety. It is dark and quite scary. Then the light of a town appears and the person may or may not find a way to dock the boat and find safety. Through multiple rebirths, we drift through samsara finding danger and scary places without real safety. The lighted town is the Dhamma – teaching of the Lord Buddha that guides the person in the boat to safety.

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One thought on “Adrift

  1. Hi Michael,We are sorry your plans have come to a halt for the moment. But perhaps you might see this as a test of your resolve :O)Hang in there Michael.We are following your journey with great interest.thinking of youJohn and Vieng

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