Arhats are like actors in a play that they have decided is really, really rubbish, so they work towards putting on a wonderful performance on their final night; and then they leave the stage – never to return.
Shakespeare had the measure of this when he tossed out those memorable words: “All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players; they have their exits …”
Here’s how to write your own perfect part in this drama we call life:
- Give. If you want to receive a Ferrari for your birthday, then scented candles would not be the best gift to give anyone on the important occasion of their birthday. Similarly, if you want to get the neighbours to be quiet – yelling at them as loud as you can is unlikely to do the trick. Do you see where I’m going with this? If you get upset about babies being born with severely debilitating conditions before they’ve even had a chance to be horrible to anyone (and you have no concept of previous lives in your world view) then you really need to go back and unread the above. Sorry about that. I know, I know – that mean that people will say horrid things to me from now on and expect me to deal with it. But hey – that’s the breaks – right?
- Love. When you love everything; and that includes bats-wing-cabbage (remember that? no? oh! that must just be me then), computers that shut down unexpectedly taking the last 3 hours of your unsaved novel with them, people that insist on talking to you when they can see that you’re trying to write, and Donald Trump, then you will be a lot happier than if you don’t. Try it. Send Donald Trump some of your best ‘be nice’ vibes right now and see how good it makes you feel.
- Play. All the world’s a play can mean more than one thing. A play is like a drama, but it’s also like a thing that children do when they hang out with dolls, teddy bears, bricks, inflatable bouncy castles, slides, swimming pools, gardens, beaches, oceans, racing cars, computers, televisions, apps, tiny screens, cat videos, funny words and, finally, after a good-long-while, distant memories of a life gone by. Excuse me – I just need to pop out and buy a teddy bear. I’m going to call him Teddy Booboo the Second.
- Nice. This is a really easy thing to say: be nice to everyone. Even when you’re sat in your meditation room, in your best lotus position and you’re sending sweet vibrations of peace to all those bad people out there who want to cause death ‘n’ destruction, then it’s easy to put a subtle smile on your face, ascend to dizzying spiritual heights and blast out those rays of ‘be nice’ to the world. Then, when the neighbours start playing loud music you’ll be, like – yeah – just blast a bit of peace in their direction too … bzzzz! Hmm – that’s strange – it’s not working – turn up the power … BZZZZ! That’s when you start to feel that tic under your eye. But you continue sending even more peace towards your neighbour’s garden with all your psychic might … BZZZZZZ!! Suddenly, they turn the music up, connect a microphone and begin singing along to Michael Jackson’s Thriller. And they’re not in tune! And they can’t even get the bloody words right!! In fact – they are massacring you favourite song, ever!!! And it’s about then that you throw open your window and lean out – eyes popping, veins distended, heck-a-yelling: “Will you SHUT THE FRICK UP, I’m trying to bring about WORLD PEACE, you NUMPTIES!!” You get me?
And that’s all there is to it really. Stick to these few principles and you will script yourself a really nice life. And look – the headings (now that I’ve rearranged them) make a delightfully memorable phrase for your delectation: Give Love, Play Nice. Ain’t that just the cutest thing ever?!