No matter where you go, there you are.
Accept everything about yourself - I mean everything, You are you and that is the beginning and the end - no apologies, no regrets. - Clark MoustakasI am tempted to leave you with the Moustakas quote alone because it is enough to chew on for quite a while. But I'll continue...
Yesterday, I settled in to my scheduled session for post writing. I could not produce anything coherent. It wasn't that I had no ideas — I had too many. No pegs were falling into the right holes. It was as if I were trying to breathe out on the in breath. I was forcing myself to stand up as my body was telling me to lie down. I wasn't easy on myself about any of it.
A rainy Sunday. I usually enjoy rainy days but I could have used a glimpse of the sun to help lift me out from under my own stormy cloud of confusion. Writing about this, I thought, is not going to do anybody any good.
But we all contend with days like this.
With the exception of one or two spots, I have completed my very thorough spring house cleaning. Now it's time for the deeper work. My confusion stems from internal clutter and the only thing to clear that out is elimination. Detoxing and knocking off the crummy habits. Those tasks are part of the big spring cleaning process. The house and studio are in pretty great shape. On to the next step.
In my confused state, I picked up Shunryu Suzuki's book, Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind and opened at random. Naturally, my eyes fell on a relevant passage.
So we say true understanding will come out of emptiness. When you study Buddhism, you should have a general house cleaning of your mind. You must take everything out of your room and clean it thoroughly. If it is necessary, you may bring everything back in again. You may want many things, so one by one you can bring them back. But if they are not necessary, there is no need to keep them.Time to bump up the meditation.
Here is another passage that I found tremendously comforting —
You may think Buddha attained some stage where he was free from karmic life, but it is not so. Many stories were told by Buddha about his experiences after he attained enlightenment. He was not at all different from us. When his country was at war with a powerful neighbor, he told his disciples of his own karma, of how he suffered when he saw that his country was going to be conquered b y the neighboring king. If he had been someone who had attained an enlightenment in which there was no karma, there would have been no reason for him to suffer so. And even after he attained enlightenment he continued the same effort we are making. But his view of life was not shaky. His view of life was stable, and he watched everyone's life, including his own life.Well, my job is to work on making my view of life — and myself — less shaky. Acceptance, further cleaning and better discipline are in order. It's a process.
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Take some Basic Drawing Lessons.