Confessions of an (un)pure mind: Consumerism of human beings by human beings
When I arrived at Kathmandu I was expecting to work with a so called Lama, who once might really have been a Lama and Yogi, but who resulted to be a complete fraud by now. Back in India in the Tibetan settlement called Majnu Ka Tilla he talked to me when being with a Mexican friend enjoying a nice day. It was a few days before I wanted to leave to a tiny village called Tso Pema or Rewalsar, which means Lotus Lake and where one of the most important figures of Tibetan Buddhism, Guru Rinpoche or Padhmasambhava, meditated in a today holy cave.
Well, this guy (the “Lama”), called Pema Tenley, was also planning to go and said we could team up and travel together.
Well, to make the story (this time) short, he talked about a project he is planning in Kathmandu, where he is living. He wants to built a retreat centre with an orphanage, a clinic for free medical check ups for the local people and I don’t know what else. He already had the land, planted fruit trees and built one retreat hut. I must have had written on my forehead “I want to volunteer for a good project” because it seemed perfect to me that I met him and thus offered my help.
As I said, this time I won’t tell the full story, so I just resume that I wanted to meet him in Kathmandu to help him realise that project.
It didn’t last not even a week or a few days, no, just a few hours after I arrived, for his real intentions to come through: He just wanted me to be his kind of - how to say?- consort?! No idea, but after realising that all my ideas and plans of working as a volunteer in a monastery, of knowing the “real” Buddhadharma and the monastic community, weren’t working at all, and after seeing so much greed in monasteries, misconduct in any way of monks and frustrated nuns, and now a fraudulent Lama who just wanted money from me, and worst of it: he got it, and just have sex, I was totally down. My ideal of Buddhist life, practitioners and Lamas was destroyed and I felt misused, reduced to an object (sexobject) and simply lost in life.
After a week or two I was about to fall into depression and I decided to go out to meet some local people to do whatever: talk and ask what to do and where to go in Kathmandu, hang around or anything that would help to not falling into depression.
In a café I’ve met a young Nepali guy who started to talk to me in Spanish and who was flirting nicely with me. He was handsome and I decided then to go to his shop to talk to him. We went for a tea and the same evening we met to go to a live music bar. He was obviously younger than I: he said 26, at the end it turned out that he was hardly 23 and therefore my record in getting involved with younger guys. Honestly, I have no idea wether I look so much younger or what sort of things I inspire in younger guys to flirt with me?! Since it happened the past years several times I really must have some issue with that. On the other hand I attract much older guys, which bests are willing to cheat on their wives with me. But I really would like to figure out why I don’t find an average old guy? I mean, one who is my age or a few years older, means 31 up to 37, not younger than 30, not older than 38… Is that so difficult, are they so rare or already in some one else’s hand?
Anyway. It was very nice to talk to this guy about music and superficial stuff and after a couple of hours he asked if I would like to go to his place, which turned out to be a motel. And I must confess that not even now I do know why I said just with a nod of my head ‘yes’. An instant later we were on his motorbike and I started to think about how foolish this is. I don’t know who he is, where he lives and I’ve met many decent looking guys who turned out to be complete assholes. Still I tried to make clear that I wasn’t an easy girl to have but he only replied that he was and easy guy to have. Now I wonder: are there guys who are NOT easy to have?
It would be really fun to describe in detail what happened after but for the purpose of this note it doesn’t matter. It’s only important that we started to meet several times during the next two months to have sex. It was a very funny experience and also very exotic. I never hooked up with a stranger and started an affair this type so it felt good even if we both knew and settled from the beginning that it was about only one thing. We also went for dinner and had the attempt once to watch a movie on his laptop but it ended in the same, though I must say that at least we ended up sleeping in our arms, basically hugging, which took the banality of the instinctual a little bit away and gave the situation some sort of fake “tenderness”.
He only needed to text me to ask if I wanted to see him and I went. I have no idea why!? Was it because I was such in need for just one thing and to experience the thrill of the secret and forbidden (because we couldn’t got to my place, he wasn’t allowed to take me to his place and we searched even some weird places to be together). Or was it because I decided not to be a Buddhist nun and saint practitioner and I could do what I wanted, or was it more because somehow we all are human beings who once in a while are in search for affection? Whatever it was, I was there for him. But soon I realised that it wasn’t like this the other way round. Even now I am clear that I wasn’t in love and that it was not more than sexual attraction combined with fun and having a good time. But still it felt unfair that it wasn’t equal.
Before I left Kathmandu we went for dinner and he told me, that he recently had sex with a belgian blonde girl in the toilet of a bar and how exciting this was and how he kind of presumed with that. This happened exactly the time when I asked him to meet me and he didn’t replied. Of course why would he? He was already busy with someone else. And in this precise moment I felt hurt. Not because of jealousy, but because I realised how easy I am exchangeable, not for the first time, not only me. We human beings in general have become and have make us exchangeable like mobile phones. We use people like this: there is a new and interesting model, with nice and modern features and apps, we chose it, we spend time with it, use it, like and even care for it, but as soon as a new, a better and updated model comes around we abandon our previous model. I don’t mean by any chance an “old” model, it’s just an already used and familiar model and we want the more exciting one. So we just exchange it for this newer version, sometimes better version, sometimes not, but it still provokes a new thrill. So then we don’t throw away the previous model, we don’t hate it, we just put it away and keep it somewhere in case we’ll need it again and occasionally we use it again.
This is the consumerism I mean: we get one person and exchange it for another, newer, better one not thinking one moment about the fact that we might not even need another one, that what or who we have has everything we need.
And after this experience with the Nepali guy, my ego felt offended, my self esteem again suffered a small slap in the face, but above all I understood for the first time that it wasn’t only about me. I deeply felt from inside the sadness about what we humans have become, and that the existentialists like Sartre and De Beauvoir where right in their statements. So I came back to my dark, cold and impersonal hotel room, sat down on my bed and cried. I cried for the human kind, and the loss of humanity. Cried because I felt like being used and seen as an object and not as a living being, cried because I made felt others like this, because I have misused other people the way it just happened to me.
And as much exciting and even exotic and nice this experience was, it also leaves a bittersweet taste and the determination to not want to taste this again. I’m just not made for this. I don’t want this, but what about some real and genuine love and affection instead?
I will be looking for it.
Nepal, October 2012
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