By Stew Bittman, D.C.
Poor Blue has been a nervous wreck. Ever since I made the intention at the last Gathering to be as nice as my dog, I find myself staring at him a lot, observing his reactions and basically trying to figure out what makes him tick. He doesn't dig it at all. He'll stare back at me, apparently trying to determine what he did wrong, and when I don't say or do anything, he keeps coming over to me, expecting to be petted or expecting us to go out for a walk or expecting whatever it is he expects. And since I've intended to be as nice as he is, I've been doing a lot of petting and walking. I've had to become sneakier in my observations, and thru them I've determined that he really is nice. He lives to please. Nothing makes him truly angry. He never judges today's walk against yesterday's. He bears no grudges, no resentments, no complaints, no addictions, no conceit, and no self-pity. He appears to have no ego to speak of, and basically he has been pissing me off. How can I ever be like that? Granted, I can certainly be nicer, especially with my family, and indeed I have even found myself asking the perhaps-blasphemous question, "what would Blue do?" But can I really be like him? Do I need to eat hard, dry, and disgusting dog food, and nothing else? Do I need to accept, integrate, deny, or obliterate my rather large ego? Do I need a lobotomy?
Last Friday rolled around, and after nearly 12 hours in the office, including another of my twice a week, marathon health talks, I was faced with the prospect of leaving my house at 9:30 PM, a 90 minute drive to Reno for a 12:30 AM flight to Dallas, a 2 and 1/2 hour layover there, then a flight to Toronto arriving at noon local time, all in order to speak at Saturday Nite Live at 8 PM. I can't even begin to describe how little I wanted to go. I even went so far as to invent some excuses to get out of it, thinking the whole time how Blue would never have allowed himself to get into this situation, which didn't help. I went ballistic on my ego, blaming it for getting me to want to speak in Toronto to begin with. But voices in my head kept murmuring about abiding by commitments, and about people needing to hear my message (not to mention the fact that my ego still slobbered over the idea of speaking where Sigafoose and Dick Santo and even BJ himself had spoken before), so off I went.
The talk went well, even if the crowd was considerably smaller than for the aforementioned speakers, and even tho I had gotten about 2 hours sleep since Thursday night. My ego was doing a somewhat reserved tap dance across the dance floor of my consciousness as people came up and thanked me. Then an amazing thing happened. A young man named Colin emerged from the shadows with tears in his eyes, identified himself as a University of Toronto philosophy student, and proceeded to ask me the meaning of life. I could tell he was lost, so I gave him a few answers straight from chiropractic philosophy, and gifted him with my book. I gathered my belongings, said some final good-byes, and left to return to my hotel. There was a thunderstorm raging (after 6 weeks of no rain), so I had to take a detour on my route back to the hotel. I past a tall column, and leaning on the far side of the column, reading my book, was Colin. We proceeded to talk for an hour. He was indeed lost. He had been experiencing what he considered to be some form of divine guidance, but had been unable to accept it. He questioned it, he tried to figure it all out, and he had plunged into a deep depression. I remember thinking that he could greatly benefit from hanging out with Blue. I said something to him (which I can't even remember), and he burst into tears, saying, "I'm feeling very moved by what you're saying." At that precise moment, a lightning blast went off directly over our heads, and a nearly simultaneous thunderclap scared the shit out of both of us. We looked at each other, both with tears in our eyes, and started to laugh about the exclamation point that God had just placed after my sentence. It was right out of "The Natural." Then he shared with me that he had gone to church earlier in the evening (for the first time in his life), and while there was loudly and clearly directed to get up and go to the auditorium where I was speaking, and there he would meet an angel. Wow. We hugged as he told me that he had always hoped his angel would turn out to be a beautiful girl, and I returned to my hotel room to subsequently keep my sleepless streak alive.
As always, I am left with multitudinous questions. Did Innate create my ego and does it use it to get me do stuff that is essential for the plan, like getting me to Toronto? Do I really have faults and weaknesses? Do I really have free will? Do I really want to be like Blue, or am I already an angel, just the way I am? Can I see myself as already whole, healed, and perfect? Can I really see that in others until I see it in myself? Is there any such thing as separation of any kind, or does my brain just continually cut slices out of wholeness? Is the whole thing rigged? Are we really all angels for each other in this magnificently designed life? Do I really have to have any of these questions answered? Or do I simply get to wonder and experience as I venture on my path, enjoying every step?