28 April, 2011

"I want everyone to be healthy"

The man naively said to me, when I asked how his wife is doing post back surgery. He said he was tired of having to bathe her. I guess he forgot his vows, and he was referring to his circle, and it was not a general wish for everyone. I said, "Right now, you are O.K., wouldn't you be pissed if someone said this about you? You know it is just a matter of time, aging hits eveyone of us." This same man complains of his kidney stones, yet won't drink enough water. I suggested aloe vera juice when he complained of reflux. It makes me think about what I do that contrasts my well-being. In fact just writing this seems trite, so I ask forgiveness.
Bicycling to the store the other day, moving quite fast, a woman turned right in front of me across the bike lane to back up in a driveway, she saw me and did not care. I braked hard, and the rear wheel lifted up, but no wreck, I was attentive. Anger rose up fast, but I said to myself ...this where the path is put in motion. Stop it, don't curse her, don't wish harm...she won't change for me. Release the anger, as I rode up to her at the light she got stopped by. The first victim of my anger is me, and as the light turned green rode on, with a smile.

26 April, 2011

we already have everything ...We Seek

My vipassana experience pulled my “I” apart from my body awareness. What this did for me is to enable me to drop the attachment to this old aging body. So, when I am tired or my shoulder hurts, it is not “I’m tired, or my shoulder hurts,” and more my body is affected, my awareness is not. I have the same awareness whether or not my body is hurt or tired. My choice now is not attach to anything as unstable as the body. It is not the same one I had 5 years ago, or even just yesterday.

Back when I had my near death, and subsequent hospitalization with brain injury, “I was a little foggy” and yet still had humor, anger and the whole range of emotions…I still was aware. I realized over the span of a year(yes, a slow learner!), that I had to drop any ideas of who I was in the past, the attachment to the “I” that existed before the injury. Sure, I could set unrealistic goals, but I was smart enough not to speak of them, so if I failed no one could call me on it. My core being was not damaged, only my brain…so if I walk funny or talk totally bizarre it is my body. I began to notice hopeful inquisitive people ask, “Where are you from?” If I laughed they would relax as well, as I would. If I tried to protect myself, my “I,” would only turn out badly or even pathetic. Laughter about who the hell "I" was, post my coma and journey to the next life(short-lived, but fun), only foretold the future to a better outcome. Don’t try so hard, everything we are... we learned, you did not have a hard drive filled with software ready to rock. Unlearn..that there is not anything out there that you don’t have inside of yourself.

23 April, 2011

From a Beautiful Heart... a Surprise

Well, I have just come down after this week’s surprise gift… having to nap two hours from exhaustion. I started the day with an hour meditation, took the nuns some food I made, and did yoga. Still felt very tired. I have been working on the house, while paying my property taxes, budgeting money ever so careful. Meanwhile, my partner has been asking when am I coming and have I booked the tickets yet? I have been looking, but have not enough money this month. So, on Tuesday a friend emailed me and said he would like to give me an early birthday gift, a free 3 month ticket to Thailand. My jaw dropped, and being mindful as I sat in meditation that morning... going, this is excitement! I felt the blood rushing, and my eyes fluttering. With all my flaws and critical mind, I have been lucky to have a few good people come into my life. And stay. From the moment I met him, he has shown me he has a great heart. I had helped my friend in the past settle in another country with his partner when the U.S. was not willing. I guess I should not be surprised... just be very thankful!

19 April, 2011

The Path Light

The other day, a friend came by for tea. Excitedly, he told me about having three tickets to possibly win a multi-million dollar house. He went in with two other friends, only spending $225(his share) for the chance.
I said, “This might point to you to why I am on this spiritual path... You have two houses, a good job with a flexible schedule, full retirement, and money in the bank and you think that winning this house will make you happy?” He replied, ‘And, your point?”
That happiness does not lie outside of yourself.
It doesn’t mean I have fully given this all up, just bringing more awareness to every decision I make. Also, I’m not trying to be a killjoy, but he has asked in the past why bother and said I should just enjoy life. My difficult circumstances brought this to me and it is not a hobby or to fill time.

16 April, 2011

Tears of Gratitude?

I was sitting down to meditate and gratitude came up. My mother, the Buddhist nuns, my family(even my mentally ill sister), my friends, my current and ex-partners(one of which was cooking for the nuns at my suggestion), and the friend who lead me to vipassana( by not telling me, showing me).
Tears started to flow, and I began to think, am I mourning the loss of my ignorant self? Or perhaps, being so stupid not to appreciate them even more? ... and thus telling them? But telling someone they are appreciated is only words, and using wisdom to motivate right intention and thus action begins to call out stronger. Observing it again, it is just emotion, the heart peeling layers of protection off of itself. Layers applied to protect the self, which is really only a made up, or learned identity. Unlearning it is really relaxing all formally entrenched ideas of a self, independent of the world. If we were really independent, we would not have parents. Think immaculate conception(not here! Believe you me!) and it blows the self out of the water.

14 April, 2011

Create Your Own Happiness

Sometimes your allergies are in full bloom like the flowers and you take the pills. Some work, some don't. Some pills make you clean the house in record time, others leave you in the dust. At first, you say they are driving you crazy. But what happens every year? ALLERGIES. When I was a kid we lived for awhile in the middle of nowhere in farm country. My dad was giving me hell like, 'GO, find a friend!" The only loser I could find sucked his shirt, so it was really slim pick'ins. My allergies would swell my eyes shut, and only because it was all I had! Fast forward to today, they are a part of life and once you decide not to make this your misery, live with it, laugh more or meditate more. Maybe even nap more, and suddenly they fall away from your center of attention. Who is really in control?


Now how can you be miserable wearing this t-shirt?

11 April, 2011

The Dust Also Rises

My table in a quiet murmur speaks to me, “Remove my dust, please.”
I, like the rock can't move. I am waiting for the next wave of dust to settle, from the vibrations of life. Attentively, I stare, listening to the sound of silence. The rock says, "Hey, you, Mr. dreamy eyes, can you bring me some water? I really look quite handsome, with the salt water of the Kehoe beach. Don’t you remember when I left you so enchanted, when I surfaced among your miseries to wake you up? You dragged me home to sit in dust with all I have done for you? I tell the rock, “Hey, listen up, buddy, you're enjoying the vibes of all life, some of that dust is mine or I mean me…its’ really me. The rock says, "It is who? How can that be?" “It is the ever changing me, some of my precious skin lies there on you. Up close and personal. Are you wearing protection?", I say, laughing. "Hopefully, it is the fun parts, or those same enchanted parts we share, because I have shelved the misery for right now. So, enjoy the dust." I turn the light off and rock whispers, "sweet dreams."

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09 April, 2011

This Hand ...

This hand shoed off the photographer at my 4th birthday party
because I felt shy.

This hand was held while my mother stopped my nosebleed when I had a fight with my best friend at 5.

This hand was held, by my father when they stitched my eyebrow cut open when I enthusiastically ran after my father to fish and fell face down on rocks at 6.

This hand grabbed a tree to hide behind when someone shot at me and my friend walking along a frozen creek at age 7.

This hand held the reins of my first pony I bought with money I saved from mowing lawns at 13.

...and Later

This hand was held by my partner when he was told I might die while in a coma.

This hand wai’ed the older gentleman crying who sat behind me as appreciation for his fortitude for
being there at a 10–day Vipassana, upon completion.

This hand fell on a nail and provided no feedback as to its state, besides being very colorful.

This hand swept up to the sky in yoga many times in sun salute, trying to make it mimic its mate.

This hand cannot feel anymore and too soon will lay still at my side and burn in my cremation.

Between now and then it is busy, Na?
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06 April, 2011

Night Wisdom t-shirt

© A "WhereYouStop"
proverb t-shirt
...printed on Back.
H e a v y w e i g h t
— many colors to chose from —
yours for $17.99
click on t-shirt to order

05 April, 2011

Season of Change

With the same “off again, on again” vibrations of life, my Vipassana course cancelled at 8:30, because of a storm and power outage. I just laughed and started to un-pack. I was in email contact with one of the nuns when this happened, so she knew how much I wanted to go. Later, they called back at 10pm saying it was on. On the drive out there in a storm, I was buying tea for the teachers for dana, and something told me to buy a pair of rubber boots. Good thing! The weather seemed to be coordinated perfectly with the concentration of our minds, stormy snow and rain at first, clearing to sun. On the fourth day, I was lucky enough to be served a smile by another man in our dorm on the way out of the meditation hall in a kind of like a “whew moment” that we all shared. Tried to work on my numb left side in the meditations, and on the eight day my left index finger and second finger lifted up above the place it rested on my knee. On day 7th and 8th day, I found some heart “blockage” that I pierced in visualizations, as it arrived and passed. Just noting without craving, my heart beats clearer and adds some new vibrations even now while home. I am hoping to integrate this in my daily meditations, using body sensations to realize impermanence. Just the same my guard spider is gone for now, but he usually moves down when the wind comes up in spring back to the trees and hedges nearby.
Yosemite was perfect closing for the weekend ending of this course before heading home, a suggestion by a dhamma brother. Many Thanks All!
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