Saturday, February 7, 2009

Stillness as a response to turbulence

It is difficult to avoid the onslaught of information that reflects the daily reality of these turbulent times. Over the last two weeks, I have noticed interesting shifts in the national mind. Joy and relief for our new President, excitement in those first days of actual change, disappointment at the same old behaviors of the entitled, fearfulness for the massive loss of jobs, sadness and anger at the continued selfish contempt and rancor offered by the minority party. Like waves arriving on shore—large and small—when we pay close attention, each wave indicates the condition of the vast ocean from which they spring.

Internally, stillness has seemed an appropriate response to the upheaval (hence the temporary silencing of this blog.) I observe the hysteria over a collapsing economy and mindfully look within to see what responses arise in my own mind. Fear, anger, distrust, hopefulness, relief, uncertainty, inertia, impulsiveness, prognostications—all these states of mind continually lead me to one choice: recognize what truly matters, revel in what actually is, and remain still.

The freedom of wisdom arises when we no longer allow ourselves to be a slave to the reactive mind. Freedom of heart arises when we no longer rely upon projections of future security for our happiness. Contentment resides in the now, and only in the clear comprehension of the ever-shifting, yet continually, newly created now.

The Buddha said it best:

Master your senses
What you taste and smell,

What you see; what you hear.


In all things be a master

Of what you do and say and think.

Be free.


Are you quiet?

Quiet your body

Quiet your mind.


By your own efforts

Waken yourself; watch yourself,

And live joyfully.


Follow the truth of the way.

Reflect upon it.

Make it your own.

Live it.

It will always sustain you.


from the Dhammapada

3 comments:

Kelly of KarmicTools.com said...
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Lisa Dale Miller, MFT said...
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J said...
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