Walked: 37.3Km (131.6Km total)

Some people don’t know how to be alone. Others don’t know how to be with people. Worse yet, others—and I put myself in this group—just don’t know how to be. When in company one desires solitude, and when in solitude, one desires company.

I once had a cat that would meow to be allowed outside. Once outside, not a minute would pass before it would meow to be allowed inside. Of course, once inside it would meow again. I once wondered how long would this indecision last. I didn’t have enough patience for the game, it seemed the cat simply wanted to be inside if it was outside, and outside if it was inside. The pattern would repeat for all of eternity.

In order to break the infinite loop a distraction was necessary. Usually a snack would do the trick, then it would forget it wanted to be outside. Human beings rely on alcohol to tolerate company, and some sort of junk information consumption to escape loneliness.

Speaking about ourselves, is there a solution to this conundrum which doesn’t involve distraction or numbing of experience? Why would the cat behave like this? Because it was stupid, indeed. But, unaware of its own motives would be more accurate.

The cat wouldn’t experience a desire to be outside, it would experience an aversion to being inside. Once outside the relief would last a couple of seconds, but there was nothing there for it, so it would experience aversion to being outside. Without a motive for being either inside or outside, it would simply wish to be where it was not.

Can’t stand people. Very well, come into solitude. Can’t stand solitude? Come back to people. Can’t stand them again! Despair! In spiritual terms, you are acting through aversion and avoidance. The direction of growth is pausing, calming the voice inside which complains all the time, and listening to the more subtle yearning of the heart.

Does the cat want to curl next to his human slave? or does it want to go outside to try catch a lizard? But listen carefully, these yearnings are often mirages. We do things not because we want to do them, we are not seeking the activity in itself, but the validation that comes with it. Should I hunt a bird and bring it to my human, he will think highly of my hunting skills.

The yearnings of the heart come without attachment. They are whispered suggestions, never loud demands. They are experienced as being on the right path. They are things which yearn to manifest through us, as opposed to things we yearn to produce. They require no witness, and don’t ask for praise.