Emigrate Within

To emigrate is to leave one’s current country
in search of a new land to call one’s home.
It is a painful, but often necessary, action.
It has been taken by peoples throughout history.
Sometimes it is a willing step into adventure.
Other times it is the last and final choice.
It is done, at times, in desperation.
At other times it is arises from a deep conviction.

The country that has been called by me, “my home,”
has reached a point of no return.
Were I younger, I would not hesitate
to join the honorable ranks of emigrants.
I would seek a simpler and less “prosperous” place.
I would learn a language not my native tongue.
I would find community in people bonded
by a love of ordinary life together,
of quiet pleasures and lots of earthy laughter.
It would not be perfect, not at all,
but it would be my way of stepping off
the plank that hovers over the abyss.

I am to old for that, I fear,
but not too old to be an inner emigrant.
There is a place within, a homeland waiting
that is guided by different ways and rules,
by assumptions that are congruent
with the heart’s authentic beats.
It is not an easy journey
and you can’t take much stuff with you.
Most of what you think you need
will have to lay beside the road.
You’ll need empty hands and spacious hearts
to learn to live anew, but it has been done before
by countless thousands of wandering seeking souls.
It can be done again.

Whether you’re young or old, my friend,
make your plans to leave.
Find the place you know your heart desires.
Emigrate within and find it waiting for you.
Don’t hesitate. There’s not much time.
Your life depends upon it.

Author: William Martin

Taoist teacher and consultant

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