My dented, faded 2002 Honda Accord would save me $50,000 that day.There was still a tinge of tobacco smoke from the previous owner. Cigarette ashes burned holes in the seats. A smoker had to tell me that. I had a habit of playing with the melted plastic that formed on the cloth material. I miss that car.
I parked next to his brand new Mercedes Benz GLC. The kind with enough space to hook up in the trunk. I parked close. You see the rich have a problem. If he hits me opening the door, he scratches his car. If I hit him opening my door, he scratches his car.
My blood started to pump. My eyes got clearer. I rubbed my hands together. The last negotiation hadn’t even started. We played show for show and the other guy was looking large. I had just won.
I profess non violence. I have read the books on Martin Luther King Jr, and Mahatma Gandhi. I quote the yoga sutras of patanjali often. They are true heroes. My belief system aligns to those teachings. But when you have connected your fist to someone’s face, there is something that changes in you. It reorders your perception of power in the universe. When you have been pounded in the head until you are unconscious things change too. When you look to someone standing over you, it puts you in your place in the world.
That day though, I was doing all the punching. I had just enough cash to stay in the game but not enough to lose. I sniffed the old cigarette smoke and it smelled like money.
I waved to my new partner looking cozy in his leather seats. I touched the burn holes again.
Many people are trying to keep up with the Joneses. My strategy is different. In World War 1, a rifle man landed on the beach in Europe. While the brigade charged the enemy positions, he instead ran up the beach. The fighting raged. He circled around the enemy. One by one he entered the bunkers and bayonetted 12 enemy fighters taking over 4 bunkers that day. As they focused on what was in front, he came from behind. I want to keep up with the rifle man.
I couldn’t help but feel this way. How could this rich, successful guy break me off my price point in the deal. I was a kid. I had no experience. I had very little money. My car was pathetic. I was uglier than this man.
The timing was right though. We needed each other. It was enough to tie us in but not enough to tear us apart.
There is a meditative state called shuniya. It is considered the still point where all reaction stops. It is a state of nothing. This is the most powerful place to start. When you have nothing to lose, there is infinite opportunity. It is the fear of loss that keeps us from transforming. When we realize we always have nothing, then we can walk through life ready to accept all that there is. We can actually see what is real and be grateful for our blessings amidst the chaos.