'Hope fuels the fool because the fool doesn't know what to hope for.' That is the legend that hangs over the entrance to the Fugger Life Coaching office.
There's a lot of discontent out there. There's a lot of people limping through their lives, hobbled by their discontent. A lot of these people come around to Fugger's life coaching office. I get them to sit down and tell me all about it and they do. It's always the same. They are unhappy. All of them. Some want to be understood. These people usually are understood, perfectly understood. The real problem for these people is not that they are misunderstood but, in fact, that they are not understood in a way that they would like to be understood. They would like everyone to understand them as fantastic individuals but others understand them as flawed individuals. Instead of acknowledging that they may actually be flawed, the people that come to my office take the easy option and decide that they are misunderstood. Do you understand that? No, neither do I. I tell these people that they are indeed misunderstood and the person that understands them least is themselves.
Other people often tell me that they wish they were, and I quote, 'fucking dead'. I am forced to point out to these people that their problem is not that they wish they were 'fucking dead' but really that they wish they were 'fucking alive' or maybe just 'fucking'. I'm not sure if that's what these people want to hear but it's what they need to hear. They usually ask me what they can do about it and I tell them to stop wanting things and maybe to try and just let things happen.
You see, the problem for many is that they won't let things happen unless things happen exactly as they want them to. Take the great many who come to me complaining that they are 'unloved'. I tell these people that, unless they are child eating cannibals or something, they are doubtlessly loved by someone but probably just not by the person they wished they were loved by. Then I tell them that the person they wished they were loved by is probably visiting some other life coach complaining about not being loved by some other person and that this other person might well love the person I am talking to and also be feeling similarly unloved. Do you follow me? You probably don't. You often get confused by those perplexing sentences I construct for that very purpose. Apologies. I'll make myself clearer. It's like this, Tom comes into my office complaining that no one loves him. By 'no one' he means Jane. Then I tell him that Ann loves him. Then Jane comes in complaining that 'no one' loves her and I ask if by 'no one' she means Ann and she admits she does and then Ann comes in complaining that 'no one' loves her and she means Tom. It's a Möbius strip of discontent. The Universe's little joke. Lord Shiva playing a game with himself. A strangely miserable game but perhaps entertaining in its misery, like Eastenders or something. I tell those that feel unloved that everyone feels unloved and this is the ultimate irony of the cosmos because everything in the cosmos is the one thing. 'It's as if the top of your head longs to touch the sole of your foot because it fails to realise that they are already connected', I say. It's in response to this that I'm often told by my clients that I'm being far too spiritual and not at all pragmatic. That's when I say that spiritual is pragmatic and that it seems to me what the client actually means by pragmatic is magic, as in a magic solution to all their problems that will bring them their desires on their specific terms. I then conclude by reminding the client that I am a life coach and not a fucking genie and, pointing to the words over the door, I say 'do me a favour Lord Shiva and get the fuck out of my office'.
Yes, my clients often complain that my coaching fails to make them happy and they usually ask for their money back. This is when I remind them of two things. The first is that money doesn't make you happy. The second is that life is not about being happy anyway but actually about feeling fulfilled and fulfillment often comes by a circuitous route that involves a great deal of unhappiness. Take a mountaineer who feels the need to conquer a daunting peak. Climbing to the peak will probably be a miserable and trying experience but the compulsion for fulfillment drives the mountaineer on. When my clients finally understand this they usually return to the topic of the money I've taken from them. (It's very hard to shift people away from the thought of money) 'If money doesn't make one happy Mister Fugger', they ask, 'then why don't you give me a refund?'. My clients often adopt a smug expression when they ask this question, thinking they have turned my own logic against me. This is when I tell my clients that they'll find not getting a refund more fulfilling than actually getting a refund because if they don't get a refund they'll enjoy moaning about it all the time and moaning is obviously what makes them feel fulfilled because actually addressing their fucking problems certainly doesn't seem to do it for them. If this seems unfair to you I'll remind you that the clients and me are one and the same anyway as we are both of the same cosmos so they don't need a refund as they never lost the money in the first place. Remember too, you are also us so if you still think it's wrong for me not give a refund you should remember that you are me so you are also not giving that refund and, like the clients, we are also being denied the refund just as the clients are denying themselves the refund. It sounds complicated but it's simple enough to grasp really, once you're enlightened. We are all one. We are all Lord Shiva's sock puppets, albeit unaware that we are mere avatars in his cosmic game of Eastenders.
Look, I hope I'm not coming across as esoteric and heartless. That's not my intention. I know that life can be rough and sometimes it can be very very rough. I also know that depression and sadness are terrible things but discontent, well, discontent is quite another thing. Discontent is caused by a sense of entitlement that is based on cultural norms and today's cultural norms come from the unsophisticated narratives found in popular large screen dramas, advertisements and other kinds of things where all problems are portrayed as solvable and everyone, ultimately, gets what they want. This is nonsense. Even if it were true, once you got what you wanted you'd probably start to want something else. 'Want' is the problem. 'Want' is an addiction. 'Want' is a state of mind. We are indoctrinated to 'want' and not just 'be'. Sure, 'want' makes money but money doesn't make you happy. Mine is the true War on Want! Quit wanting! That should be all you want.
Consider it this way, a thousand years ago my clients wouldn't have had the time to be discontentedly wanting all the shit they want, they'd just be happy enough to have made it to the end of the day without being mauled to death by some kind of gigantic bear.
Do you understand? Are you feeling illuminated? Good. Now, do me a favour Lord Shiva and get the fuck out of my office.
(Remember – although greatly enlightening (and a bit up its own arse these days), visiting fugtheworld.blogspot.com cannot replace a therapeutic relationship with a reliable mental health professional - you crazy fool.)