To reach liberation of spirit (moksha), according to various yoga teachings, takes a lot of effort (tapas).
On my way to work this morning, having left the house 20-25 minutes later than I would have preferred, I came upon a demonstration led by organized labor seeking a Secretary of Labor who honored good jobs. My timing, thanks no doubt to the mysteries of the goddess of sequencing, was perfect; just as I arrived Senator Sanders was speaking. The puzbot was posing for lots of photos.
On my way home from work, I heard the sounds of a crowd at the Capitol. I joined in to listen (Elizabeth Warren spoke shortly after I arrived) and chanted with my fellow citizens–the chant not “om mani pedme hung” nor “om mane padme hum,” but on this particular night, with this particular crowd, addressing this particular issue, “one more vote.”
Being out here over and over again regardless of hope of the immediate outcome being effectively influenced is a variation on tapas, on sadhana, on seva, on faith put into practice.
It seems that this monk and I are being drawn to the same places this week, though I am guessing our days are pretty different.