REPLY #1 TO
are parts of the original essay (or a subsequent reply) to which the respondent has directed his comments.
prefaced by (R) are those of the respondent and are presented unedited.
My replies appear under the respondent's comments in blue text
and are prefaced by my initials (MB)
(R) Enjoyed hearing your wishes, my main wishes have been for wisdom and/or
enlightenment. Of course, that might mean different things to different people.
(MB) Some people search for those things for a lifetime and never find them.
Others seem to have been born with them. The rest of us fall somewhere in
(R) I became interested in philosophy in high school, browsed some of the great
philosophers' writings, pretty difficult to understand, searched a lot of
religions -- had a notion of what great wisdom or enlightenment might bring.
Leaned towards the East, admired the gurus' stories, learned to meditate in
different ways, became hooked on the great peace, healings and sometimes great
ecstasy these techniques offered.
(MB) I've found that Eastern philosophy is far more compatible with my general
outlook on life than are the artificial religions of the West. Too bad that
Zen, for example, is not taught (or even mentioned) in most schools.
(R) But found the more I learned and experienced, the less I could relate to
others. I have become a virtual recluse. My only social contacts are made
shopping and working, and they are very superficial.
(MB) Unfortunately, the majority tends to be satisfied in their limited
knowledge and may even shy away from those who are educated. What's truly sad
is that their ignorance includes the inability to understand what it is that
they are missing.
(R) I had about all the sex one could want as a young woman, both good and bad,
so when I grew old and fat and unattractive, I didn't miss it too much.
(MB) I guess that too much of anything can cause the appeal to wear thin after a
while. In any case, I hope you haven't totally abandoned sex.
(R) I wanted to be rich once, but all the rich men I dated and rich people I
knew were not as happy as I am alone, so stopped wishing great riches. It would
be nice to have all my bills paid, such a nuisance writing checks, keeping track
of finances, very boring.
(MB) Being "rich" doesn't always correllate with having a lot of money. A lot
of people with lots of money lead nearly bankrupt lives.
(R) Power I have rarely craved except, perhaps, the desire to overpower certain
attackers, ward off rapists, reprimand an over zealous supervisor.
(MB) More or less your basic self-preservation stuff, eh?
(R) Some times I wish for different things, but find them easy to come by and
when I get them I don't want them any more. It's the hunt and desire that keeps
me going perhaps,...
(MB) Two old sayings come immediately to mind. "Be careful of what you wish for
because you might just get it" and "Having is not so much fun as wanting".
(R) ...and yet there are philosophers or gurus that say the important thing is
to desire nothing, want nothing, and then you have everything. Not so sure of
(MB) But, isn't such a goal itself a desire and a want? I prefer to be happy
with what I have so that I can better appreciate what I might get in the future.
(R) I go to sleep most nights praying I don't wake up, but still am waking up.
(MB) Obviously, one day you (and, for that matter, all of us) *will* wake up
dead -- prayers or no prayers. Until that happens, we should focus on the
things that bring us satisfaction in our lives. I don't know that there are too
many people who can't find at least one thing to smile about during each day.
(R) Some days I think I've been deceived, that I've really died and am now in
the purgatory or hell some Christians speak of. Who knows, it's all a
puzzlement, as the King said.
(MB) I figure that if you can ask the question or have any doubts, it hasn't yet
(R) Thanks for opportunity to share.
(MB) I hope you'll find a smile when you wake up tomorrow.