I have become a monk, a hermit, an ascetic, here in this out-of-the-way small town of Blackstone where nobody knows my name. Oh, I meet people and say Howdy do, and all that, but there is this monk living in a mountain hut inside. My real life seems to be in solitude. Not loneliness, mind you, but solitude.
Solitude is vast and deep. There are no boundaries here. Other people create boundaries. The interior is the undiscovered land. I remember as young boy I loved National Geographic stories and maps of Africa, and the undiscovered interior. In the 50s, Africa still had that lore of the adventure. And only the brave went into this dark interior for the treasure of King Solomon’s Mines.
If the world is a labyrinth of the mind, then Eckhart Tolle (I wrote this on a Tolle group) is Ariadne’s Thread. It’s not that he gives us a golden thread to follow out of the Labyrinth, he just points to the thread we already have, as a role model would demonstrate what we need to do, and how to use it. We have the thread. Tolle just shows us how to use it.
What is the Minotaur in the labyrinth of the mind but our Pain Body. Like Theseus, we have to go into the labyrinth intentionally. Otherwise, we become a sacrifice to our pain. Our pain becomes our god, a demanding god that needs to be feed sacrificially in everyday life. We feed it by identifying with it and then running from it. The avoidance of pain is the feeding of the pain, because avoidance is an inverse identification with the pain. We can’t face the Minotaur because we don’t have Ariadne’s Thread. We don’t have a map of the Labyrinth. The way out of the labyrinth is through the Minotaur.
Lets look at the Labyrinth. Watching Brit movies, you get to see a log of English gardens, and from above many look like labyrinths where you can get lost as each turn offers another puzzle: which choice is the way out. You don’t know since there is no outside reference for you to cling to, like a ship clings to a lighthouse to avoid getting lost in the storm.
When we enter our own mind on this journey, we let go of all that we used to guide us, because we realize that all the lighthouses—religions, authorities, psychological maps, ideologies, even science—are in the labyrinth. Suddenly, we don’t know where we are. This is a frightening state, being lost without. compass. But that is exactly what we are inviting when we being our trek into the interior, going where no one has gone before. No one has ever been into my own interior, including me. But I resolve to go there. There is no turning back.
I love Brit mysteries because they all have a Minotaur in the well ordered English garden. Something dark lurks in this quiet English town, a murderer, who is disguised as everyone else. The Inspector comes to follow the clues and reveal the Minotaur and restore order to consciousness. The cause of the murder is always buried pain, the ghost from the past that demands a blood sacrifice to be appeased.
The Minotaur is revealed when the Inspector connects the dots of clues and sees the whole labyrinthine plot as one whole, one gestalt. AHAH! I’ve got it, he says, dropping his breakfast fork and runs out of the house.
And so with our own mystery. When we suddenly see the whole plot, the whole labyrinth of our mind in one Insight, one flash, that light dissolve the Minotaur, who can’t stand the light of consciousness.