Ask Bad Guru – A tour of your psychic needs |

Ask Bad Guru – A tour of your psychic needs

Barry Smith

Recently, while making my way through a taco buffet line, I attained enlightenment. I was absent-mindedly tonging some grated cheddar into my taco shell when BOOM – release of all worldly attachment, connection with the Eternal Oneness, Total Bliss, the whole bit.I am 28 years old and had only been “on the path” for a few months prior to this incident. I assumed that I wouldn’t reach enlightenment until my late 50’s or early 60’s, if ever.So, suddenly I find myself about 30 years ahead of schedule. Before this I had envisioned a life of pilgrimages, meditation retreats, lots of chanting, motivational tapes, vision quests led by White people with Indian names, T-shirts with mandala prints on them, but now I’m, like, There.My question is, what do I do now that I have so much time to kill?Signed,Blissful but BewilderedDear Blissful,There are those who struggle and fret in their quest for Perfection, and there are those rare few who just stumble into it like a drunkard on a banana peel. Sounds like you suffer from the latter, a rare condition known as “Premature Illumination.”Alas, this blessing can also be a curse, as you have described. On the one hand, hurray, you’re enlightened! On the other hand – the one that ISN’T clapping – what does the Enlightened One do all day? Why did the Buddha not require a Palm Pilot? Did Zoroaster consult his Daytimer? Do you think Jesus ever had “a three o’clock?”Unfortunately, Enlightenment is like a spiritual circumcision. There really is no turning back. But, also like circumcision, you will gradually forget about your old material attachments and will wonder why you ever made a big deal of it. Get yourself a comfortable loincloth and throw away your razor.I hope you enjoyed that taco.Dear Bad Guru,A friend of mine said to me recently, “Remember, enlightenment contains the word ‘light.'”I pointed out that it also contains the words “ten,” “lig” and “ment,” and, if you rearrange the letters a little bit, “hemline,” “mitten” and “gentile.”He accused me of making light of his attempt to inspire me, and I suggested that if canned New Age quips were his idea of inspiration, then he can stick it in his root chakra.He mumbled that denial was not a river in Egypt.One thing led to another and soon a scuffle broke out. I hit him across the back with a chair, thinking it would shatter like they do in old detective movies, but it was a big, sturdy office chair and it didn’t give a bit. My friend, however, gave quite a lot, and is currently in traction.Was I wrong?Signed,Quick Tempered In QuebecDear Quick,What is wrong? And what is right? This all depends on who is watching, especially if they have a video camera.Your friend was obviously a vibrational match for an office chair to crash down upon his back. Karmicly, the two of you attracted one another, perhaps to resolve a past life experience where he hit you with a piece of office furniture that was readily available at the time of your incarnation. Bad Guru suspects that the two of you have been coming back again and again, hitting each other with various office supplies since the days of Atlantis.You could spend a lot of time trying to break this “chain of pain,” but Bad Guru thinks you shouldn’t worry too much about it. In the future, office supplies will only get smaller and lighter. Even the chairs will soon be made of space age micro-metals, weighing mere ounces, so getting hit with one will be no big deal. This little game the two of you are playing will work itself out in its own time.Go on about your life, send your friend one of those edgy get-well cards and breath easy until your next incarnation.Dear Bad Guru,I was told that when chanting “OM,” my emphasis should not be on the O or the M, but on the space between. What does this mean?Signed,Cincinnati ChanterDear Cin,If you want to spend your precious life energy, or Prana, on such cryptic wanks, then be my guest. Bad Guru suggests you dump chanting altogether and incorporate “scat” singing (“ska bah de lah bah boo bop,” etc) into your meditation practice.It isn’t necessarily a short cut to inner calm, but it’s definitely the scenic route.Barry Smith, an Aspen-based freelance writer, moves his lips while writing this column, and hopes you do the same while reading it. E-mail him at or visit his Web page at

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