What’s So Hot About Cool? ~ Uma Simon

Via on May 14, 2012
Marla Sabio

Kids are still looking to be cool. I thought a lot about being cool in the ‘60’s. Lighting up a cigarette, letting it dangle from my lips and assuming a demeanor of not caring was how I did it.

I think I was hoping for a kind of a John Wayne laid back style––“Howdy Pilgrim”––with perhaps swash-buckling, sword-fighting Errol Flynn thrown in, as he maintained that famous grin even while being assaulted by somebody’s sword. Those were our heroes then, strange secular models for what I was looking for.   Today while reading Wikipedia, I discovered that my erstwhile movie model, John Wayne, not only was a rabid conservative, but also died from lung cancer as a result of a six pack a day cigarette habit.  Errol Flynn was an alleged Nazi sympathizer. That put the lie to the word “cool.”

When I consciously thought about being spiritual about 38 years ago, I changed “cool” for the word “detachment.”

Nevertheless, I still thought it meant that I would no longer react to whomever or whatever was making me uncomfortable or pushing my button. Entering into spiritual life, I still hoped for that veneer and thought it would come effortlessly through my spiritual connection to my teacher. This actually was to be true, but not in the way I thought, the operative word being “thought.” Even though I received wonderful compliments for some of my career work, it really didn’t mean as much to me as when I returned home and didn’t react to somebody who made a careless or unconscious remark.Non-reactivity for somebody who has considered herself a basic “hysteric,” was quite an accomplishment.

What did I hope to achieve?  That I would become Teflon as my favorite girl friend says, and comments, insults, and disappointments, would

gromgull

just roll off me?

She told me she developed the Gardol shield (popular in the 60’s when referring to a cavity-fighting attribute of Colgate toothpaste.) I have to admit it looks good on her as she ambulates through life, having a good time no matter what.

Last year, giving up on becoming detached, I thought I would do something else and prayed for “acceptance.” However, what I found was that trying to love myself and accept my flaws while engaging in them was like an expanded oxymoron. Two very separate emotions were competing for space at the same time. Finally defeated from my desires of spiritual accomplishment, I am left with the realization that both these wishes, one for detachment and one for acceptance, are still ego motivated and in fact, means I’m still looking for that ice cream on a stick that has no calories, the hero who has no clay feet, or the life that has no obstacles.

Today I read a quote by my teacher Ma Jaya that “non-reactivity was surrender.” It made me realize I had been riding the wrong horse all the time and that I had subscribed to a set of beliefs and desires that were false. In my limited understanding, I think that surrender is a place of letting go of egoic expectations, desires, hopes and attachments that run counter to the true spiritual quest for peace. On those rare occasions when I drop my aspirations and desires and let myself “be,” I experience peace within myself.   While a moment-to-moment thing, that peace seems to turn into joy and I discover that to be the true detachment I have been searching for.  Hallelujah!

Editor: Lindsay Friedman

 

 

 

About Uma Simon

Uma Simon. My guru Ma Jaya Sati Bhagavati left her body on April 13 of this year. I have been Ma’s devotee since 1978 and it was an extraordinary gift to have known and studied with her. As well as being the Resident Intuitive at Kashi Ashram, I am also the Spiritual Explorer for Ma’s India, a spiritual gift store in Sebastian, Florida where I answer questions such as “What is the best kind of incense?” and “How do I know when I have found my guru?” You can write me at umasimon@comcast.net

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5 Responses to “What’s So Hot About Cool? ~ Uma Simon”

  1. Shirlee Kesselman says:

    This is the best site for anyone who desires to find out about this subject. You notice so much its nearly onerous to argue with you (not that I truly would want…HaHa). You undoubtedly put a brand new spin on a subject thats been written about for years. Nice stuff, simply nice!

  2. [...] You are not cool just because you are at Wakarusa/Summer Camp/Bonaroo/Electric Forest and haven’t showered in over a week. You are not are true hippie, and you are not recreating Woodstock. [...]

  3. [...] days, they are cool. They wear skinny jeans, sweep their skater hair from their face and write Facebook statuses I [...]

  4. Uma Simon uma simon says:

    I am too. Thanks for writing. Let's keep this going!

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