Dealing with Neighbor Karma – Mindrolling Rinpoche Helps with Loud Indian Neighbors

 WARNING: this is a vent; read at your own risk.  Awakening at 3:30 AM

So anyway. Okay. That’s probably IT. Neighbor karma! And they say if you don’t fight against the karmic consequences; that is if you accept without resistance, this releases the karma.

Are they butchering their own meat for dinner with a chain saw? Or grinding up ice cubes in a blender to make frozen margaritas to get drunk on? Or shoving what they can shove down the electric garbage disposal? You have to love the way they yell right over the top of the noise—even when the grinding sound isn’t happening and they are within two feet of one another—yelling at the top of their lungs! What’s that about, huh? Say, What!?!!?? If you are Indian (from the country of India – not to be confused with Native Americans), please ask yourself why you scream at the top of your lungs when it isn’t necessary?

Mindrolling Monastery in Dehra Dun North India
Mindrolling Monastery in Dehra Dun North India

Well, it’s obvious, isn’t it? This ain’t no monastery and (that’s not all!). Besides that…

I can’t get no… I can’t get no…. I can’t get no… SATISFACTION! (Rolling Stones)

Remember back in the mountains when the new neighbor massacred an acre of perfectly healthy and happy trees displacing numerous trees and deer and birds, et al –? (I’m talking to long time followers of my blog.) There was a disturbance in the force – a horrid ripping up of the pre-peaceful energy field – it felt terrible. Awoke to that same feeling at 3:19 AM! Voices shouting—a woman’s voice! NO, don’t tell me they’re at each other again downstairs.

Lovely! The young people in the next building were on their patio whooping, hooting and hollering to the silence of the night. Humans around here are just blowing off steam, releasing their stresses is the guess. Why oh why does this particular kingdom of beings (human kingdom) who have the most advanced brain potential on the planet act like dogs? No, dogs are much more intelligent; they bark for a reason; at least most of the time. Unfortunately, this same level of intelligence is not able to be attributed (at least by me) to the downstairs Indian neighbors and the young “drunk-at-3:30 AM-hooting-into-the-trees-neighbors”  who live in the next building a mere 30 feet from the one we’re in. Watch out!  There’s competition for  the human idiot of the weekend prize around here—the Indian couple below me now has competition.

Come to think of it, I’ve always had neighbor issues (karma?) even back into my late teenage years. The man in the house next door used to stand on is porch (only feet from bedroom window) and call his little black dog named “sooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooH-TEEeeeeeeee”, correctly spelled “sooty” until I wanted to pull my hair out! Then years later there was the neighbor who would send her son to my house to play soon as she got home from work so she could entertain her latest boyfriend. And then we had the old couple who… well, never mind. Yeah, neighbor karma.

Maybe they (downstairs Indian couple)  got some message yesterday—who knows? Loud Indian People, I’ll say it again–Loud Indian People!   Well, let’s start with Friday night; they always come back from Monsters, Inc. (Lowe’s Headquarters) on Friday nights really geeked up and louder than any of the other days of the week. I was into my writing when they blasted in downstairs, their voices escalating as the night wore on. I tried to be tolerant—obviously another bad day or week for them and they’re fighting about it again. I put my headset on and piped into my ears via my headset the meditation and relaxation music that I’d spent hours ripping off CD’s last week. I was prepared!

Go ahead freakazoid Indian peeps! I’m prepared. Can you believe that over certain music –which I had playing full blast as loud as it the volume will go—that I could still hear them at certain times?

I was writing the lesson on astrological elements and modalities—earth, air, water, fire and cardinal, fixed and mutable signs. The lesson I was writing was a bit complicated to explain so to keep my focus, keep myself sane and to keep my sense of humor, when they’d yell out below me, I’d yell back that the male part of the couple has won the biggest mouth of the week award and I congratulated him duly and properly in my own language to match their voice volume (loud) while they barely took a breath, not listening to a word! Not that they could hear a thing over their non-stop vocal drama. She would wail out in a long vocal diatribe on occasion and at the same volume, I’d hoot and holler back in response that unfortunately, try as she might, she wasn’t nearly as obnoxious as her male counterpart although at times it was rather close. Then I’d wish her better luck for next week and go back to my typing certain they did not hear a word over their own vocalizations. Did you ever hear pig calling? No. Really. It’s a sport in certain parts of the American’s—they have pig calling contests. I really think this Indian couple should enter; they’d win@! — hey, don’t judge me; this blog and that are my ways of DEALING. 

I can’t imagine what the heck they’re grinding down there but from the shouting, it’s getting pretty exciting for them right now.

Mindrolling Jetsun Rinposhe
Mindrolling Jetsun Rinposhe

Yesterday morning I played an hour of Her Eminence Mindrolling Jetsün Khandro Rinpoche for their listening pleasure (and mine). She may have (who can know for sure?) out talked them putting them into a more quiet trance for the rest of the day. Who knows really since I made it a point to be out most of the day with the family—it was my grandson’s birthday. But before I left, their voices were subdued. Thank you Rinpoche!

There’s the Mindrolling Monastery in India. Do theses Monkey Mumbai’s (as I lovingly call them) know about it I wonder? It’s located in the foothills of the Himalayas in Dehra Dun in North India. Well, if they can calm down downstairs, I’d like to contemplate further the Yanas! The first step to this is to accept my neighbor karma with love, compassion, toleration and did I say acceptance, yeah, several times now.

May I accept what I cannot change! I am no longer in the peaceful serene mountains. I am not in living in a monastery. I am in the middle of slumdogs, making the best of it, accepting my karma, learning toleration, but to love this is a bit of a stretch; I’m tolerating until I get to go home. Let there be peace on Earth (the kind that doesn’t come from alcoholic overdose or scream fighting with others until exhausted – the real kind).

Well, the grinding stopped downstairs, so maybe I can get some work done now. Yeah, it’s Sunday but parts of me don’t know that—an old throwback habit from my peaceful, serene days in the mountains. Many times I did not know what day or time it was.

Oh, to finish on a positive note—the celebration of my grandson’s birthday was such a contrast! We had a lovely dinner together at Olive Garden Restaurant (his choice) and came back to a little party at home wherein we played a few rounds of Catch Phrase, and then his mother read to him a list of memories about him that we all submitted to her beforehand at her request. His task was to guess whose memory it was. Then we each read 15 things we love about him (since it was his 15th birthday, 15 attributes or virtues, etc.). Again we had these prepared ahead of time to read. It was very beautiful actually.

His aunts gave him a savings account in their name that they opened for him and a booklet of the account and deposit slips – the account being for saving for his first car. We supported this with our own monetary gifts and he received a few video games and his mother’s big gift to encourage his music and this he was so thrilled with it—a violin! We all then enjoyed a totally awesome ice cream cake which was especially good since we’ve all been dieting. A warm, beautiful family evening!

Later I came home to bathe, sleep and be awakened at 3:30 AM to the party of drunks hooting at the trees on the balcony next door. Such is life, the acceptance of my neighbor karma, and now we’ve come full circle.

Judging from the voices below, I feel another teaching from Her Eminence Mindrolling Jetsün Khandro Rinpoche in my immediate future!

PS—why do people SLAM cupboard doors? Answer?: because they can (I suppose?) Accepting my neighbor karma—trying to send love; help me Buddha!

….and as I end this diatribe they are screaming at each other below me. Meditate? Ha! Perhaps a charnel ground meditation for me today? Chad– Perhaps and if  I must.

Merge, Harmonize or Maintain Separation? Living with Mumbai Neighbors in the USA!

MUMBAI
Mumbai!!

Maybe it is a matter of merging and harmonizing—and not being/feeling/trying so hard to be separate.  Maybe that’s the lesson from Lord and Lady Mouth of Mumbai!  Okay, so I am being sarcastic and cynical and I shouldn’t call them that.  You may want to cut me a break with that since I’ve been up until after 1 AM listening to their gyrations, door slamming and loud-mouthing!  Yeah, I make myself stay up until they quiet down because IF NOT I have horrible dreams from their fighting and door slamming.  Yeah, talk to the management?  I have, they say call the police or slam the wall or stomp my feet and they will get the message.

It is about merging and harmonizing instead of fighting it!  And them!  And myself!  At least I think that’s the approach.  After all, what I’ve seen of India—aside from the ashram of the late Sathya Sai Baba—and PBS documentaries showing crowded streets and dog-eat-dog chaos amounts to a sum total of that and the movie,  Slumdog Millionaire!  Their way of life is probably 1,000 different than my own—they are obviously used to merging with others more than I am.  With a population like that I’d suppose you’d have to know how –and I’d not be able to survive in India the way I’m not able to even merge or harmonize with my downstairs neighbors!

Many of us get this concept of India that everyone there is like Deepak Chopra or are meditation masters.  I cannot tell you how many people from India that I’ve met who say they don’t even know how to meditate—so they’re just like Americans in that sense.  I can’t lump the whole culture; that’s not fair and of course I’m blogging while sleep deprived here on top of being frustrated with the paper-thin walls here while now knowing that I’m hugely overpaying in rent for such a shoddily and cheaply constructed structure.  But there it is—fact.  It is what it is.

Some light here involves my soon to be married daughter who lives in suburbia in a beautiful community of condo—it’s gorgeous!  In the summer time their pool is supervised and the last 10 minutes of every hour of the day they clear the kids from the pool so that adults can do lap swimming.  YES!!!!  She mentioned that when they buy their house in another year that they would … well, she’s going to talk it over with her soon to be husband, but she indicated that it’s possible that they could rent their condo to me!!  I do miss the mountains and planned to go back – something more deeply affirmed within my since the super-mouths of Mumbia moved in below me.  (If you’ve not been paying attention to my blog, they have earned that well-deserved name with me due to their 24-7 marathon dialogues interspersed with sudden fights that spring up just when you suspect they’ve finally fallen asleep throughout the wee early mornings!)  They don’t leave for Monster’s Inc. (Lowes Headquarters) until around 9:30 AM but I’m up by 6 AM to welcome my granddaughter in while we wait together for the time for her school bus—her mother has a long drive to work and has to leave early.

Oh, why not put on a fan for white noise?  Yeah?  I hear them over the sound of the fan and if I fall asleep before they do (their fighting and loud voices beneath my bed can still be heard anyway), the result for is crazy, horrible dreams—nightmares.  Bad dreams were coming every night (not typical for me AT ALL) until I woke straight up out of one and heard them fighting beneath me….duhh, no wonder!   Honestly, these folks go on-and-on-and-on-and-on and never give it a rest!  I’ve never heard anything like it and really if there was an award given for people who talk, bicker and fight non-stop—they’d be the clear winners!

I was feeling the FLIGHT OR FIGHT feeling in my bed while reading my spiritual book—that’s when they first moved in you see and I didn’t realize that there were new neighbors.  Suddenly in the midst of my reading i feel that whole ‘fight or flight’ panic in my body.  Really? where’s that coming from?  I put my book down to go within to figure it out when i realize that i think i hear a voice, man’s voice.  No I think, I must be imagining it.  My fan is on, vibrating, making white noise.  I go back to my book.  Again, louder, voices…. still feeling my heart race and sort of panic feeling.  What is going on here?  so am I crazy?  I get up to turn off the fan to find out and yeah!  Its Lord and Lady Mumbi –the downstairs neighbors–going on and on yelling to each other beneath my bed!

Okay anyway, i’ve got one idea–it could help.  I am going to get some inexpensive door mirrors at Wal Mart and put them mirror side down beneath my bed hoping that whatever energy comes up will be forced back down via the mirrors!   I’ll let you know how it works.  It won’t muffle sound but may direct energy back down so i don’t feel it in my body.  In this instance of the Mumbai neighbors, the fact that I’m a sensitive, a psychic, is more a hindrance than a help.

Enough kvetching!  The only thing I can do is try to harmonize instead of insisting that I maintain separation.  I want to say this is MY sacred space and your voices and door slamming sounds are NOT ALLOWED—GET OUT@!!  But, how realistic is that with these paper thin walls?  Their voices just carry—they’re the opposite of ‘soft talkers’.  I suspect one or both may be partially deaf –this I try to believe to evoke compassion for them which at 1 AM is really difficult, but I do try!

Anyway, one coping mechanism is to run the dishwasher through a few cycles; that muffles Mumbai for about an hour and a half.  I put my TV onto the Buddhist channel the rest of the time in an effort to change the vibe –but really in the evenings my habit is to meditate or read; usually both.  How long can I listen to the Dalai Lama’s translators or the sound of my own dishwasher before that gets old too?  Well, there’s always old re-runs of Grey’s Anatomy or a Harry Potter DVD, but the point is that’s all me still trying to separate instead of merging and harmonizing.

Anyway, that’s my thought for today—it has to do with my observation that I am trying to separate myself from humanity and humanity is right underneath my feet letting me know it’s not going anywhere!  Nice!  And they say the universe has no sense of humor!

Part of this is not their fault!  The shouting and slamming doors—yeah, I’m going to have to talk to them about that stuff that goes on after 10:00 PM; there’s no need for THAT!  The other part of it is just them being them—humans!  Humans’ way too close to my turf!  Boy O boy do I miss the old tenant … a single guy who just played his TV … a movie every now and then.  No problem; I’d go into the bedroom, turn on my fan and read my book.  Sure.  I’d hear him on the phone now and again but ‘what the heck’, a person has to talk once in a while.  But these folks—OMG!  It’s like a 24 hour phone call–!!

The weekend is upon us—and really I’d like to work more on writing my astrology class but why bang my head against the wall?  It’s impossible to think straight with the motor-mouths of Mumbai going at it all day long!  So, I’ll be coming up with a plan B today; maybe I can take my whole act over to my daughter’s house—she’s 5 doors down and hardly ever hears her neighbors.

Well, they don’t leave for Monster’s Inc for another 45 minutes.  I’ve been totally killing time here waiting for them to leave for their jobs.  I may go back to bed for a while which I really don’t like doing b but you won’t find THIS hard to believe—I’ve got a sore throat and head cold since yesterday afternoon.  Yeah, figures.

See that photo of Mumbai?  I nearly laughed out loud!  Apparently, they’re used to living like that—and yeah, I’d never make it there OR I’d have to learn to merge and harmonize.  Just look at the photo; that many people crowded together like that?  They probably learned to shout to one another just to be heard over their neighbor!!  They’re probably doing what is in entirely natural for them and I’m the one who has the problem!!  I’m trying to see me from their point of view.

Could I be better at harmonizing and being more tolerant?  Yeah, I really think I can and should try harder!  Just look at that picture!  I look at the birds outside my window taking turns to come to the birdfeeder… they sit on the branches waiting for some to clear out while others are there.  Somehow they merge and harmonize and …. Well, some do flap their wings at the others, but still.  I think that when the Mouths of Mumbai are home, I should be not home as much as possible.  I should fly away like the birds to the birdfeeder.  I’ve got to get better at harmonizing and merging with humanity; but I will still carry the Plan B to go back to the wilderness.  I sure do miss the quiet and serenity of the mountains.

Merge, harmonize, blend and quit thinking that you are a separate ego Joy!!!  You are only energy in the world like everyone and everything else.  Lose your illusion of separateness and put the ego to bed, for good—merge, dissolve, blend, harmonize.  Let go.  Namaste Mumbi Mouth Lord and Lady, Namaste!

Excuse me now.  I’m going to bed to nurse my cold and restore my health! It is 9:15 AM ; they should be soon leaving for Monster’s Inc.  Please god, don’t tell me that they have the day off today!!  I’m waiting to hear the door close…. waiting, waiting, waiting…..   Oh, thank you jesus…9:20 AM and their door closes…they’ve gone…. AMEN.

Yeah, I’ll admit to being close to going over the edge…. but for now i’m going to grab  my Kleenex and get back into bed!