self-help lecture at the 1978 Sturgis motorcycle rally

self-help lecture at the 1978 Sturgis motorcycle rally

The 38th Annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally (August 7-13, 1978) Was the first time the National ABATE convention was held. The 40th Annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally

Transcript from unknown speaker: 

"Ladies and gentlemen, brothers and sisters of the 1978 Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, today, I stand before you to share some words of wisdom, to guide you on the ride of your success and fame. We all know that this journey we embark upon will come to an end one today. We must prepare ourselves to step off the bus and reenter the ordinary environment of our minds and find happiness within. It is crucial that we avoid allowing our personalities and egos to consume us, just like some famous people who remain extraordinarily famous until the day they die.

To navigate this path, we must develop advanced techniques to ensure that we do not fall into the trap of dependencies and intoxicating substances. If we find ourselves engulfed in the haze of such substances, it is a sign that our inflated ego is not ready to handle it. We must confront the anxieties, cravings, and unmet needs that stem from our youth. Our attention must be directed towards healing the traumas and situations that have shaped who we are today. Let us embrace a non-judgmental mindset as we embark on this journey of self-discovery.

I urge you to keep an accurate journal, a chronicle of your trip through life. This journal will prove to be a cathartic tool, allowing you to understand the thoughts flowing through your mind. Putting these thoughts down on paper has a healing effect, materializing the areas we need to work on. It grounds us, giving tangible form to the swirling thoughts in our heads.

Furthermore, we must give careful thought to our relationship with substances that intoxicate our bodies and alter our minds. In your journal, be honest about your dependencies. Are you reliant on marijuana or alcohol? If so, it must be addressed, not only to be present with your creativity and fame but also to preserve your well-being.

Ultimately, our task and role in fulfilling our desires is to spread positivity and light in the world. Entertainment holds a special place in people's lives. It serves as a time capsule, reflecting how societies of different generations react and think about life. Each one of us is a vital part of this story, but perhaps your role will be more pronounced.

However, fame and fortune bring with them both positive and negative aspects. They can easily overwhelm a sensitive individual who is not adequately prepared. Therefore, we must prioritize the purification of our bodies from all intoxicants. This entails cleaning up our diets, our lifestyles, and ensuring we live in a clean environment. And, of course, meditation.

Meditation, often misunderstood, is not solely a spiritual practice. It is a way to exercise the mind, to control our thoughts, and cultivate a tranquil state. It allows us to tap into our creativity, discover universal truths, and understand the nature of reality. While substances like alcohol and marijuana can be worked with, they require careful handling. Most people lack the discipline and strength of mind to use them without falling into dependency. It is often better to abstain and avoid the risks they entail. Moreover, purifying the body and mind is paramount in your journey.

I understand that the word "meditation" may not resonate with those caught up in their busy lives. I, too, had my reservations initially, perceiving it as a spiritual activity associated with abstract concepts like religion. The hypocrisy I witnessed in certain yoga schools further pushed me away and closed my mind to the possibilities. But let us remember that not all practices or teachings are perfect. Life is a combination of good and bad experiences, and we must discern what works best for us.

As we become less judgmental and see the truth, we realize that everything is equal. There is no inherently bad or good yoga, meditation, therapist, or school. So, as we grow happier, we can sit in the worst yoga class, in the worst school, and listen to the worst chanting, and still find something good in it. It doesn't mean that we have to make it our regular practice, as it may not align with our preferences and interests.

Even the Dalai Lama, whom I have never personally met but greatly respect, has his own favorite places to meditate. Perhaps he finds solace in a place where he has fond memories of his teacher, or maybe he enjoys meditating on an airplane, feeling the contrast between floating above the earth and being grounded to it. We are all human beings with our individual preferences and experiences.

The example of the Dalai Lama reminds us that being thrown into the limelight does not mean abandoning a balanced mind. It requires us to remain awake, conscious, and true to ourselves. If we succumb to the temptations of parties, indulgences, and reckless behavior, it won't be long before confusion and distraction consume us.

I mean no disrespect to his holiness, but imagine the surprise if, before leaving his earthly body, he announced a debauchery tour. After getting lost in confusion, he would eventually find his way back to his favorite temple. But that's just playful speculation. The point is that we must keep our egos in check and treat everyone we encounter with respect and kindness, just as we would treat the most important person in the world. When you're on that tour bus or airplane, and a reporter comes to interview you, it's easy to feel a sense of pride and superiority. But catch that attitude and transform it immediately.

Remind yourself that one day, this person's story might be all you have left, and you'll look back at it with fondness and appreciation. Treat them with dignity, grace, and gratitude, for they might become a lifelong fan and friend, spreading positivity rather than negativity.

Now, let's shift our focus to the journey from poverty, loneliness, and lack of confidence to success and fame. Many of us have experienced emptiness in the core of our beings. I, too, have felt this void. In our pursuit of happiness, we often resort to material possessions to fill that void, mistakenly identifying ourselves with objects. We buy expensive things to mask our insecurities, believing they define who we are. But this is pure nonsense.

It is essential to recognize that you are a creative, conscious beam of light, here to do something wonderful. Does this mean you should give up all your worldly possessions and live a minimalist life? Should you abandon wealth and comfort, wearing a loincloth and sleeping in your parents' backyard? No, not necessarily. We don't have to go to such extremes. We can find a balance between success, fame, and enlightenment.

Yes, we should be conscious of the impact our actions and choices may have on others' lives. The words we speak are amplified by our power and fame. Therefore, it is crucial to prioritize our craft rather than indulging in bodily pleasures. Giving in to those desires will only enslave us to the body's whims and cravings. We must break free from this cycle and remember that our consciousness is not bound to the body alone.

So, let's put our egos aside, resist trashing hotel rooms, and refrain from engaging in superficial encounters. Such behavior only leads to more confusion, stress, and anxiety. Instead, let us prioritize our creative endeavors and focus on cultivating our inner selves.

And how do we do that? By engaging in meditation. I know the word may sound unappealing to some, especially those caught up in the fast-paced whirlwind of life. I vividly remember my early experiences with meditation, where boredom seemed to dominate. I struggled to keep my mind still and found no immediate euphoria or clarity. I even questioned whether meditation had any positive effects at all. But I held onto the belief that it could make a difference, just as many others had claimed.

Back then, I associated meditation with spiritual practices and yoga schools. I witnessed hypocrisy and judgment within those circles, which initially discouraged me. It closed my mind and led me to judge what was safe or unsafe. However, I later learned that not all practices are the same, not all teachers are genuine, and not all experiences are representative of the true essence of meditation.

In life, we encounter a combination of experiences—some good, some bad, and some in-between. It's through our own personal education and experience that we become discerning, finding what resonates with us on an individual level.

As we become less judgmental, we begin to understand that everything has value and purpose. There is no such thing as "bad yoga" or "good yoga"; it's all part of the journey. We can reach a point where we can sit in the worst yoga class in the worst school, listening to the worst chanting, and still appreciate it. Not because we want to make it our regular practice, but because we can find something good in every experience.

Even the Dalai Lama, despite his elevated consciousness, still possesses preferences and personal inclinations. Perhaps his favorite meditation place is rooted in cherished memories of his teacher or represents a unique perspective. The point is, we are all human beings with our own quirks and choices.

With that said, the essence of this message is to pop the bubble of an overinflated ego and maintain humility and respect as we climb the ladder of success. Treating others with kindness and dignity is crucial, as we never know how our actions may impact their lives and those around them. Even a seemingly insignificant encounter, like an interview with a reporter, can have long-lasting effects.

Moreover, we must reflect on our journey from adversity to achievement. Many of us have experienced poverty, loneliness, and self-doubt. We may have sought validation through material possessions, but deep down, we knew it was a hollow pursuit.

Recognizing that we are more than the objects we possess is vital. We are creative beings with a purpose. It doesn't mean we have to renounce all wealth and live in destitution. We can find a balance between success, fame, and enlightenment. The key is to remain grounded, remembering that our true essence lies beyond material possessions.

Lastly, let us emphasize the practice of meditation. It may initially seem daunting or boring, but even a few minutes a day can make a significant difference in our level of consciousness and self-awareness. Meditation is not just a spiritual practice; it's an exercise for the mind, enabling us to control our thoughts, find stillness, and tap into our creativity.

By meditating, we can achieve a state of relaxation and clarity, allowing us to uncover universal truths about ourselves and the nature of reality. It is a powerful tool for healing, self-discovery, and personal growth. As we embark on this journey, let us leave behind destructive behaviors, embrace discipline, and nurture our inner light.

So, my friends, let's embrace humility, practice mindfulness, and focus on our creative endeavors. Let us be the shining example of positive change in the world. Together, we can make a difference, not just in our own lives but in the lives of those we touch.

Thank you, and may the road ahead be filled with freedom, brotherhood, and the pursuit of a higher purpose. Ride on, my fellow bikers!

(This is totally fiction. No one ever gave this speech at Sturgis. Image stolen without permission from the Sturgis website.)

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