Meditations on White Shores

Somewhere in the world a friend sits at a desk working, in a fluorescent lit office, laid out in symmetrical squares and occupied by interchangeable slack faces staring at screens. Perhaps the sun shines outside, perhaps it doesn’t. And here I sit, on white shores, the tide receding into the sea, clear blue waters as far as the eye can see and the gift of silence. A day of silent meditation, staring peacefully out to sea, my phone turned off in my bag, no internet connection or newspapers to bother my thoughts. Not euphoric restlessness or frenzied sensual mania, simply peace and contentment. There is no-one else here, the fighting and the summer heat have driven off all but the haphazard wanders who are already here and I have the unique pleasure of the entire camp and beach to myself.
Other than the gentle breaking of waves no sound disturbs me but the occasional car speeding past behind me and even that is more. It is transformed by the mountains that rise from the beach into the howling of a low flying plane that makes the breeze rustling through the palm leaf roof into a whispered song. Three days it took to discard the urgency of the city, the mania, the noise. The unceasing opiate of energy that flows through it is drained from my mind and again peace and tranquillity return. The peace combined with a complete lack of responsibility, no more job, no fear of some forgotten commitment, just emptiness, beautiful nothingness.
No time needs to be made for thoughts, they flow naturally and sequentially as they please, one need only listen to hear the Self that is so easily forgotten in the responsibility of tasks undertaken, under duress or by waged obligation.
But this isn’t real, it can’t last forever. No indeed it cannot, but why should that make it any less real than the repeated drudgery, which feeble minds take as the litmus test for reality. What is real is what lasts some might say, but one day we all must die. Why can only that which is forced upon us, that which causes us numbness and discontent acquire the sacrosanct ground of reality. One need not exist at the expense of the other. To banish the peace of these white shores to the realm of fantasy and dreams only eases the swallowing of a poison pill and makes this place an escape, a retreat a place to hide. Refuge need only be sort from a threat, the ill-will of another that would do you harm, but who are you seeking refuge from other than an unrecognisable Self? From the dangerous thoughts that ask why? From a thought that wonders if the treasured happiness that you’re searching for lies here in the so-called escape?