Aparigrahah means letting go; non-grasping; greedlessness (thanks, Lorien). I’m not even sure how to pronounce it. I do know that it’s really, really hard.
I have been facing a personal, Aparigrahah challenge this week. Stanford Law still hasn’t given me a response (and by STILL I mean it has been EIGHT MONTHS and I ONLY have THREE DAYS LEFT before I have to start notifying other schools of my decision). Waiting in limbo, I have been refreshing my status page approximately every 15 minutes. I’ve started frequenting the online forums, which only contributes to the frenetic stress and impatience. I hover around my phone, praying for that phone call.
It’s time to let go.
I close my eyes and take a deep breath. Can I trust that even if I don’t go to Stanford, I can still have a productive career in law? Yes. Most of the time. Can I have faith that in not attending Stanford, I will still be able to adequately provide for myself; find fulfillment in my career; pursue my passions and other-wise lead a perfectly good life? Yes. But then a tiny voice whispers, “but Stanford would be so much better…” I think that this is where Aprigrahah comes in. Non-grasping. Recognizing that life provides the means for happiness.
Does this mean I don’t want to go to Stanford? Of course not. If I got the call right now, I would be jumping up and down and obnoxiously posting it to Facebook, like any sane prospective 1L. But, it’s important to remind myself, in light of my practice, that I will survive rejection and move forward, even if things don’t magically happen the way I wanted them to.
Tomorrow I’m heading to NYU Law, to wander around the campus and try to decide whether or not I would be happy there. I know I’m gearing up for another incredibly fast-paced, stressful day. Aparigrahah (which sort of sounds like a sneeze, when I say it in my head). Let go.