Since I arrived in Kathmandu I haven't quite felt in the groove, like I did back in February and March. And it occurred to me yesterday that the reason I've felt out of sorts is that I've been resisting Kathmandu. I've been fighting the trash, the dust, the muddy streets, the noise, the odor, the beggars – I've been fighting it all. That's why I've mostly gone only to school and spent the rest of my time in my room. If I'm going to be here six months, that attitude just won't do. I realized this morning that I have not, contrary to my vow, been open to reality. But that's what I need to do. To let go and accept KTM for the beautiful stinking, chaotic, filthy mess it is. Because there really is no place quite like it, despite all the shortcomings.
So, I need to affirm here: I love you, Kathmandu, just the way you are.
"When you don't have obsessions, when you don't have hang ups, when you don't have inhibitions, when you are not afraid that you will be breaking certain rules, when you are not afraid that you will not fulfill somebody's expectations - what more enlightenment do you want?" - Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche
Thangka Artist: Ngakma Pema Zangmo
Artist: Anya Langmead
Thangka Artist: Sashi Kumar
About the Author
In search of a new path, a 40-something with no previous art training heads to Kathmandu to study thangka at a Tibetan art school. Along the way he meets people, reads books, meditates, and writes about it here. Started in 2007, this chapter closes in 2009 when the author takes a teaching assignment in the UAE.
My Shikoku Pilgrimage Blog
Beginning is End
The end of building is ruin. The end of meeting is parting. The end of accumulation is dispersal. The end of birth is death. - Ken McLeod
"Twenty years from now, you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover." - Mark Twain