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money May 14, 2007


Going Broke
The last couple of weeks saw me stressing about money...the one thing I tried to do away with. I had contract offers I walked away from because I didn't want more money than I needed to put food on my table. I thrived on feeling that edge...of seeing the spectre of poverty loom ahead...of pushing the envelope to see how much less I can do with. I wasn't wreckless. There was always something on the horizon I could tap on...until now.

Life in a Cardboard Box?
Like a frantic drowning rat, I hit the freelance websites (where freelance web designers get off-site contracts), wrote former colleagues if they have work to farm-out, emailed former clients, etc. Usually, there'd be a little here and there. But this time, nothing! That's when the stress bordered on the fringes of panic. I braced myself to the possibility of life in a cardboard box...or maybe holding up a sign along a road that reads "WILL HTML FOR FOOD".

Being Reactive
That's when it hit me. There I was again, single-handedly wrestling on my fate, trying to put complete control on things again...a knee-jerk reflex reminiscent of a distant past. I lost my perspective and became reactive, seeing only the immediate problem and not the bigger picture. I completely forgot I had a formidable ally - the collective whole of which I am a part of (no, not the 'bearded one') - this benevolent universe we live in...the collective whole whose energy is boundless...the collective whole that ensures our well-being is looked after, and the collective whole that provides for our needs...only if you let it.

The Connection
At that point, I gathered myself in meditation and once again reached out for that connection I nearly forgot was there. It's that connection that allows me to see the path being cleared for me, of being able to flow with the energy like a sailboat harnessing the power of the wind to reach its destination effortlessly.

When I gave up asserting control, that's when the stress dissipated and my fears melted away. I came out of my altered state assuaged once more feeling that a nurturing energy is looking after me. Of course, it doesn't mean I do nothing and just wait for bliss to fall from the sky. I still perform all due diligence towards a goal but this time, knowing in my heart and mind I'm not doing it alone.

Trail Clearing
Almost instantaneously, within days of that surrender, I got feelers - from an unexpected source to do something totally different from web design: tutoring Koreans how to speak English. In a metaphysical parlance, it was the path cleared out for me. Given my life experience, to venture into that open door is to go with the flow using the proverbial sail and wind to do the work for me. Of course, to ignore that and forge ahead into a web design contract may work out too, but that would seem like blazing my own trail (since I'd been hitting a wall). But what for, when I had been shown a beaten path...with the sign "THIS WAY".

And It Poured
Understandably, I plunged head-first into this new tutoring world, giving my best and doing all I can (if you can't go the whole 9 yards on any endeavor, why bother?). You remember the phrase "if you build it they will come"? Well, I didn't really build anything, but they did come (the students). Within 4 days from commencing, thanks to positive students reviews, I was already on the Top 5 amongst 270 English tutors coming from all corners of the globe...and it wasn't even work! I enjoyed every minute of it, talking to complete strangers and finishing the 'class' being somehow 'friends'. In Sagada, specially with the onset of the rainy season with tourists diminishing to a trickle, I find myself in search of someone to have a conversation with. In this virtual reality, I find that someone...and even get paid for it.

Ending Thoughts
Once more, this benevolent universe pulled through for me. It once again validated my deeply seated feeling that there are many ways to do things, but the most efficient and productive and perhaps most meaningful endeavor is the one offered on a silver platter. How? You stay real in tapping that connection with energies far bigger than yours.

It's interesting that I find myself talking in such parlance. Just years before, I might have dismissed anyone talking the 'flow' jargon as a spacey fruitcake - the extreme counter-culture type I could take only in small dozes. Ha-ha, well, I could only still take them in small dozes. But I've lived through that new paradigm and experienced its reality...and it's not just a make-believe, feel-good, tap-on-the-shoulder nonsense for my psychological well-being. Sure it remains ethereal, but equally as real. maybe I'm getting spacey.

--- TheLoneRider

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Reader Comments:

(Jul 8, 2007) When I got a free bike, it reminded me of your writing, "Benevolent Universe". It seems like the universe is specially fond of me. When I've no money to survive, I'm given a job to make money. When I lack motivation or positive and energetic energy to study something, I'm given the passion to go through. This time it was the bike I was longing for.

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