Barrio Satsang

In the big house, everyone thought Ananda

was Buddha’s bitch. It wasn’t so. They were

just cousins and good friends. It’s true, that

Ananda’s admiration for the older man seemed

excessive. It didn’t help that Ananda’s body

was curvaceous, not a feather on him.
Anyway, Avatars, prophets, and gurus are often

suspected of enlightening their disciple’s rear ends.

Some say, Jesus blessed John that way. Many

inmates daydreamed of raping Ananda, but dared

not. Buddha had a fearsome rep. It was rumored,

he only had to give you the evil eye and you were

as good as dead, or worse. Terrible things seemed

to happen naturally to those who messed with the

B. dude.

Buddha was born an alpha dog, scary but magnetic,

smart, funny, had a way with words. People loved

to hang around and listen to him. Some said, he was

a prince, the descendant of a Mayan king. Certainly,

he was raised in a palace, as his mother called the

project they lived in. He was the only son of a white

whore, and a Guatemalan pimp.

No one knows for sure why Buddha was sent to the

big house. Rumors abound. Some said, he was a

serial killer; others, an arsonist. A few, said, fraud,

or for sure, identity theft. He always claimed to be

completely innocent. Not ever to have done a

single thing.

Certainly, he had issues, whether or not they were

crimes. His mother had spoiled him rotten. He

expected only the best, and that being a recipe for

trouble, always landed him in worse.

Alone in his cell, he resolved to find a cure for this

pain in the ass called life. He cogitated, speculated,

meditated, and pounded his brain hard, and by

grace, destiny, or chance four noble truths landed

on his lap:

Life, no matter what, sooner or later, sucks.

Life sucks because shit happens the moment

you’re born:

Getting old sucks, getting sick sucks, pain sucks,

sadness sucks, dying sucks. Craving and not

getting what one wants, sucks; losing what we got,

sucks. That satisfaction never lasts, sucks. That we

never learn that it all sucks, and give it up, sucks.

How come this is so? We are conscious, and crave

fun, and fear the funk.

What to do?

Be cool. Be totally cold. In absolute cold not a thing

moves, even molecules stop shaking, dude. So be

cool, and let things come and go as they will. It’s a

movie, dude. It’s not you, you are not in it, you are

not the star. Not a thing is happening to you. You’re

not evenin the theater, homei. You, are just a

character ina dream dreaming that it is not a dream.

Cease and desist: Nirodha, extinction, nirvana

they are cool words, dude. Be, as if you were not.

This is the eightfold way, chum:
See right, mean right, aim right, b.s. right, do right,

gig right, think right, keep your eye on the ball,

don’t fall asleep at the wheel, dude.

Ananda rose and addressed Buddha, “Say, holy

dude, how come that our true nature being unborn,

and undying, and all that stuff, cannot protect me

from the funk, and I sort of lost it.”

Buddha lifted a hand and gave the holy gang’s mudra

sign. “It’s like this, homei: Obscure and impenetrable

is the space that is us. In this perfect blackness by the

capricious intertwining of the darkness, forms come

up. The heart falls in love with passing forms and shit

hits the fan whenthey’re gone. Keep cool. Grok

emptiness, dude. Let form come and go.”


Buddha parked his pink Cadillac convertible with

painted yellow flames coming from under the hood.

Ananda leaned on the car.

“I need a fix,” said Ananda.

Buddha reclined deeper in the driver seat, and

closing his eyes, fluttered his long eyelashes as if in

a trance. His slender brown hand adorned with five

gold rings levitated, gyrated, and two small

envelopes appeared between his fingers. One,

pink; the other, black.

Ananda saw the two dragons tattooed on his

forearm. They faced each other shooting flames

that intertwined to form a yin-yang sign.

“Which kind of fix do you like, the dreamy, or

the awakening kind?”

“Give the black envelope. I want to stay awake,

just like you.”

Buddha opened the black envelope and read

from the sheer piece of paper it held. “This,

just as it seems…” He waved his hand in an

encompassing gesture, “is all there is. It has

no purpose, nor explanation. It can neither be

attained, nor forsaken. Let it be, and it follows

you like a puppy; try to own it, and it flees

beyond your reach.”


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