Monday, March 23, 2009

Why I chose Naropa

Warning! The following post is melodramatic and pretentious. It was very late at night. I apologize in advance if you decide to finish reading, but consider yourself warned.

Over the course of my life's education, I have been drawn to the left of civilization. Not that I see myself on one particular side of it, but rather that I am aside it altogether. What I consider my unique view of the world has revealed a heartbreaking amount of pain, mistrust, violence, deceit, tragedy, and villainy. There is a quaint amount of the good things, too, but they are invariably the exception and not the least bit common.

I always have two reactions to this view. The first is anger. How dare they lie to us!?! How dare they let this happen and show false concern while simultaneously gaining from it!?! I want to lash out, cause them the pain that they are causing so many others. I want them to hurt like we hurt; then maybe they will cease their destructive and selfish ways. But alas, I am only a small boy throwing rocks at a fortress wall. All my anger and violence give rise to nothing but a sore arm and a pile of broken rocks.

My second reaction is compassion. Immense compassion that swells from my eyes in waves of silent emotion, filling the night around me like darkness. Herein, I believe, lies my true power. Not because I feel more than others feel, but because I find it so unbearable, I know I must release it as a flood of good will for anyone that is in need.

I could have chosen from any of several universities to attend for graduate school. Any one of them could have taught me how to show empathy, give advice, listen carefully, and make a client feel better. But very few of them believe in the basic goodness of humanity, or in the wellness that lies at the heart of everyone's psyche. None of them teach that healing is only achieved with love (if they do it is completely unintentional). Only one of them teaches how to be completely present at all times, how to love unconditionally, and how to create a therapeutic relationship that extends beyond professional courtesy and obligatory cordiality. Only one university teaches the practice that I want to make my own.

I chose Naropa because it allows me to feel without feeling inappropriate. I don't have to consider myself and those around me machines in meat suits or fatally flawed by design. I can practice with the same philosophy that I live the rest of my life.

My goal is to change the world. Or at least be part of a force that changes the world. Based on my reactions to the world, I have two choices. I can throw my stones and fight the man until it breaks me, or I can teach the world about love and live it so powerfully that people have no choice but to embrace it. From what I've tasted of the former, I believe I'll find much more peace and success with the latter. Naropa is the tool I have chosen to pursue my goal of living love. Hopefully when I'm finished in three years, I won't have to ask any of you if it worked. Namastè.

"Love is a many-splendored thing. Love lifts us up where we belong. All you need is love." - Christian, Moulin Rouge

"God is love." - 1 John 4:8


  1. We're so excited for you! Congratulations. May the peace be with you.

  2. congratulations. it will be such a fun adventure!