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Archive for May, 2013

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I try to practice what I preach; I’m not always that good at it, but I really do try. The other night, I was getting hard-hearted, closed-minded, and fundamentalist about somebody else, and I remembered this expression that you can never hate somebody if you stand in their shoes. I was angry at him because he was holding such a rigid view. In that instant I was able to put myself in his shoes and I realized, “I’m just as riled up, and self-righteous and closed-minded about this as he is. We’re in exactly the same place!” And I saw that the more I held on to my view, the more polarized we would become, and the more we’d be just mirror images of one another—two people with closed minds and hard hearts who both think they’re right, screaming at each other. It changed for me when I saw it from his side, and I was able to see my own aggression and ridiculousness.  

Pema Chodron

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Suffering

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We have tried everything to get rid of suffering. We have gone everywhere to get rid of suffering. We have bought everything to get rid of it. We have ingested everything to get rid of it. Finally, when one has tried enough, there arises the possibility of spiritual maturity with the willingness to stop the futile attempt to get rid of it and, instead, to actually experience suffering. In that momentous instant, there is the realization of that which is beyond suffering, of that which is untouched by suffering. There is the realization of who one truly is. 

Gangaji

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Deep Rest

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It’s interesting that the word ‘depressed’ is spoken phonetically as ‘deep rest’. We can view depression not as a mental illness, but on a deeper level, as a profound (and very misunderstood) state of deep rest, entered into when we are completely exhausted by the weight of our own (false) story of ourselves. It is an unconscious loss of interest in the second-hand – a longing to ‘die’ to the false. This longing needs to be honored, not medicated, meditated or analyzed away. It’s amazing what can evolve naturally when depression and the desire for suicide (which is the desire for the deep rest of yourself) are truly honored, met, embraced, held, and you do not flinch from pain or turn away from it. ~ Jeff Foster

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Awoke this morning and was enjoying a cup of tea. Luna came stomping in, with her ears turned back. She goes over and swats on my yoga/meditation mat and glares at me. I am watching, wondering, what Is this about, then she lifts her rear end just a bit, and i think; ‘ she is going to go pee on my yoga mat, so i get up and shoo her away and see that she has not. I sit back down with the realization that i am clueless as to what is going on in the little feline’s morning brain. Luna returns and once again stomps over to my yoga mat to the exact same place and glares straight at me while squatting. I just shrug my shoulders and watch her, then i notice her tail right at the base of the spine is twitching. Once again i get up to check and sure enough she had peed on my yoga mat. I let her know this was not acceptable behavior and banished her from my heart. ” You little jerk.”

I then go about cleaning up and then decide to place a little white vinegar on the yoga mat cover where she peed, thinking this would be a deterrent for the future. As i am doing this Luna is just sitting watching me clean up the mess, so i then hissed at her and put a little vinegar on my hand, then rubbed a bit on her chin as punishment and reminder; “Don’t pee on the human’s yoga mat.” Miss Luna did not like this needless to say, and she hissed at me.

I returned to the tea which was cold. Then it came to me. First thing this morning i put some white clothes in a plastic bucket with bleach water to soak and placed the bucket on the floor about two feet from her litter pan. The Clorox odor must of be quite offensive to Luna. She must of thought i had fowled her litter box and left it ‘skanky’, thus the reason she stomped to where i was with ears laid back and accusing eyes as she proceeded to pee on my yoga mat.

Wow! How quickly life can turn into a ‘pissing match’ when one is not mindful.

ordinarysparrow

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Do Over

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Fortunately, when we break the commitment to take care of one another, it’s easy to mend. We start by acknowledging that we broke it, that we hardened our heart and closed our mind, that we shut someone out. And then we can retake our vow. On the spot—or as a daily practice—we can reaffirm our intention to keep the door open to all sentient beings for the rest of our life. That’s the training of the spiritual warrior, the training of cultivating courage and empathy, the training of cultivating love. It would be impossible to count the number of beings in the world who are hurting, but still we aspire to not give up on any of them and to do whatever we can to alleviate their pain.

Pema Chodron

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THREE STEP PRACTICE
First, come into the present. Flash on what’s happening with you right now. Be fully aware of your body, its energetic quality. Be aware of your thoughts and emotions.

Next, feel your heart, literally placing your hand on your chest if you find that helpful. This is a way of accepting yourself just as you are in that moment, a way of saying, “This is my experience right now, and it’s okay.”

Then go into the next moment without any agenda.

Pema Chodron

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