“We are all just walking each other home.” Ram Dass
Sometimes you read something, and it can really work you for quite a bit. This has been true for me in reading the quote attributed to Ram Dass, who just passed in December of 2019. Even though this quote was primarily about dying, I would like to explore it in the context of living.
As we move into 2020, what if we acknowledged that there is an artificial split/dualism when we talk about work life? As if it is distinct from our other lives – like family, play, home, etc.? It is one life, lived within a multitude of different relationships at any given moment.
Who you are in your living is the constant in all the different relationships of your life. So, even though where and with whom you may be living your life at any given moment, you living your life is the constant. It begins to beg the question of how you want to live your life – in all ways.
When I was a young man in my late twenties, my spiritual director at the time shared a wonderful and challenging insight with me. As I was sharing my ongoing discernment of what I was being called to do in my life, he shared that he had no doubt that I would be successful at whatever I chose. (This was wonderfully comforting to my ego needs at the time!) The bigger question for him was whether I was going to share my life with others. Wow! The challenge was to consider my life as not just belonging to me. (This was not as comforting to my ego needs at the time!)
For me, his insight provided me with a life-long challenge of how to be in my living with others. The journey has not been so much of what I have done in any area of my life, as much as it has been how I would be with others. It is how we are with others – in all our relationships, no matter whether they are at work, home, play, etc.
It is about relationships! And Ram Dass reminds me that we are not just getting there together – we also have the responsibility and privilege to “walk each other home.” How does that look for you in 2020?