Choosing The Meat Market


I was on the wrestling team in high school. I wrestled at 123 lbs. My best friend on the team, in fact my best friend throughout the final two years of high school, worked after school and on weekends in his father’s butcher shop. He got me a job there, and I worked in his father’s butcher shop for two years.


My friend’s father was as big as a cow, with hands as large and beefy as a fourteen pound pot roast. In contrast to his tremendous size, he was very gentle and friendly. He had worked in meat shops all his life. The first thing you noticed about this man was that he had six full fingers and four stumps on his two hands. As I spent more time with him, I saw that his hands were also criss-crossed with little scars that looked like the thin white strips of fat marbling through the better porterhouse steaks.


At this same time, I developed an interest in classical guitar. I bought one and began taking lessons. I had an affinity for the instrument. I liked practicing and learning and getting better.


I found out that working in a butcher shop and playing classical guitar are fundamentally incompatible interests. While I hadn’t lost any fingers, my hands were beginning to resemble a really fine porterhouse. As distracted as my mind was during those years, there was no way to avoid cutting, slicing, paring, flaying, and otherwise butchering my hands.


How does one play the guitar with fingers swollen, bandaged, tender and raw? I had to choose. This kind of choice confronts us often. What do we do? Every day, we want to know what to do, how to choose, which way to go.


I suppose one could compare the various advantages and disadvantages of each choice, each path. One could consult others. One could evaluate things based on future projections and aspirations and imagined opportunities. I don’t remember ever deciding what to do based on any of these criteria.


The butcher shop experience was more compelling. It wouldn’t let me go, as did the guitar lessons. It turned out that the guitar was the thing I could let go of, and so I did. That was all there was to it. I never looked back. I don’t remember any reasons for staying in the butcher shop. I just stayed.


I have faced thousands of such decisions, as have you. I am asked by every client, “What should I do?” I think we could fuel the world’s energy consumption for a year with the amount of energy we spend every day trying to decide what to do. There isn’t a fool proof way that I know of to decide what to do. I don’t even think it matters. I know that there is always one thing, one way, one path, that is more compelling, period. The reasons aren’t really part of the equation; they come after the inner recognition of that which will not let go of you. Go there, and don’t look back.


May everyone be at peace, in love, and know their most perfect Self.


Robert Rabbin is an author, speaker, and advisor. He can be reached via e-mail at robrabbin@infoasis.com, or by writing: 2629 Manhattan Ave., Ste. 192, Hermosa Beach, CA 90254. His new book, The Sacred Hub (The Crossing Press, ISBN: 0-89594-837-0), is available in bookstores or from the publisher at (800) 777-1048.


Robert Rabbin is an author, speaker, and advisor. He can be reached via e-mail at robrabbin@infoasis.com, or by writing: 2629 Manhattan Ave., Ste. 192, Hermosa Beach, CA 90254. His new book, The Sacred Hub (The Crossing Press, ISBN: 0-89594-837-0), is available in bookstores or from the publisher at (800) 777-1048.




“Echoes in Silence” is a bi-weekly column by Robert Rabbin–author, speaker, and advisor–who has spend thirty years using self-inquiry as a means to explore the true nature of self, mind, reality, and consciousness.


His new book, The Sacred Hub (The Crossing Press, ISBN: 0-89594-837-0), is available through the bookstores nationwide.

Robert Rabbin Written by Robert Rabbin

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