Hmmm… so I have recently discovered that it is trendy to be into Eastern spirituality (without having to understand it). Apparently it is fashionable to go on spiritual retreats, wear flowing (designer) hippy gear and meditate.
Let me tell you my story:
I was recently on a self-retreat at the most beautiful Buddhist Retreat Centre near Ixopo, KZN Midlands (highly recommended for some serious R&R – will blog more about it) and having a wonderfully peaceful time until…what can only be described as the Paris and Nicky Hilton of Joburg North arrived – kitted out in casual Soviet jeans and Prada sunglasses. They promptly reported to their room to change into freshly bought yoga pants and flowing hippy tops, complete with perfect silk head scarf (which is an obvious necessity).
The level of annoyance that these two brought to my tranquility can only be explained by sharing a few situations with you…
Hilton sister 1 (to fellow guest in heavy Sandton accent): So, are you Buddhist?
Guest: Yes I am
Hilton sister 1: Wow! That’s amaaaaaaaaazing
Yes my dear, it really is amaaaaaaaazing that you met a Buddhist at a Buddhist retreat, or anywhere in the world for that matter.
Hilton sister 1: So, what brought you to Buddhayism?
I have no words
Hilton sister 1: What should we do today?
Hilton sister 2: Oh I don’t know, maybe let’s meditate, or read.
Because obviously those two go hand-in-hand in the same category of “stuff to do today”
Hilton sister 2: Oh my god, this food is amaaaaaaaaaazing!
Me: Yes it is quite delicious – it’s really nice to have proper vegetarian food cooked for you at every meal.
Hilton sister 2: Oh wow! Are you vegetarian? That’s amaaaaaaaazing!
Me: Umm, okay. Are you not vegetarian?
Hilton sister 2: Not really. Sometimes I’m kind of vegan though.
Again, no words.
Many more similar situations occurred over the few painful days that they were there and when their last day finally arrived, they promptly changed back into their Soviet jeans and Prada sunglasses and headed off to ‘the Berg’, announcing the amaaaaaaaazing time that they had as they left.
Really? Really, really? Has it really become a trend to be ‘spiritual’? Are airheads defined by the pretence of some sort of belief system?
Granted, I’ve not had much spirituality in my life and am only discovering some of this now as I start to practice more yoga and get drawn into the deeper side of it, but really…!
It seems that no matter where you go and what communities you get involved in, there are always those that are faking it for acceptance and to be part of a trend. I find it very sad. And ignorant.
Obviously in the spirit of non-judgement and all…
I guess I still have some way to go on my journey, hey?!