Sunday, September 30, 2018
The whole essence of existence is to not fear - loose translation from quote Guatama Buddha
I have a friend who is talented, smart, kind. She will be engaging in a large transition in life. I see this as a new experience which can lead to adventures, creativity and joy. I wish this for her.
I find it hard in times of transition to not let fear settle in. Fear can stifle us and make us immobile, sad, angry etc. With fear, it is hard to see past in our minds, our happiness and love that make us whole. this is what we see in the faces of our families, friends and the smiles of strangers.
Saturday, September 29, 2018
I read today from a long gone philosopher that happiness is something which when searched for will not be found. It stares us in the face. It will show up at inopportune times. Sometimes it is hard to understand. I was thinking today of a man I knew while working in hospice. His wife died one night during a thunderstorm. He was with her all the night but noticed when the lightening and thunder crashed, she was cold and unresponsive. He knew that when she died, she went to heaven. People who die during a thunderstorm go directly to heaven as God calls them during storms. He glowed while telling me this through a few tears falling. After 20 years or more, I still remember this story and smile.
Friday, September 28, 2018
Hope is throughout our history, religious traditions and our lives. Hope is important, I believe, to growth, understanding and connection. Without hope, it becomes more difficult to thrive and be happy. Being present, I believe, brings more hope into our lives. Hope on with understanding of each day we start anew.
Thursday, September 27, 2018
Learning to accept can sometimes again be a difficult process. The idea of ego can get in our way of growth. The idea and attachment to our ideas can also do this. In simplicity, letting go of all preconceived notions, we can find that we are as we and that it that we are fighting against just is.
Wednesday, September 26, 2018
I have been thinking recently of people who have different beliefs. What if happiness and kindness are innate? I do think this as we all feel happiness and express kindness in different ways to different people. The trick, to express it as we would to our family (on a good day). I have read and studied different religions. Divinity or Buddha nature or Child of God etc exist. Maybe if we listened to each other, we can share this nature with others. Maybe we could learn from each other. That is the hope.
Tuesday, September 25, 2018
Kindness is found in communication when we open up. Sometimes it can be difficult especially when I feel that I may not get the response for which I would like. However, I find that it starts the process of being authentic. I may not get the results I wish but I feel growth. Connection is important in how we connect to pets, family, friends, strangers, and ourselves.
Monday, September 24, 2018
Sunday, September 23, 2018
Today, I have been reminded by someone who I used to know and of whom I am very fond, of budda nature. This is also known of children of God in the Christian sense. This can be difficult to see as there are times in which the actions of others do not agree with mine. It is difficult if there is lack of understanding and communication. However people have issues getting along. It is in the fact that we are all buddhas/children of God that bring us together.
Saturday, September 22, 2018
I was reading a Zen Koan today. There was a man who was chased by a tiger and to not get eaten jumped off the side of a cliff. He was saved by holding on to a vine. There were two mice who started to chew on the vine. The man seeing this, reached over and plucked a strawberry beside him. That was the sweetest strawberry he ever had eaten. As I age and have gone through numerous issues and challenges in life, I finally get it. Thanks to the author of this wonderful Koan.
Wednesday, September 19, 2018
Today, I ran into someone who I used to know and help with some of her care. I had to stop as I tried to get her more help with a special type of insurance. Once the insurance went through, I was not able to help her anymore. She apologized to me as she stated that she was grateful for my help but became upset and though that I wanted to "get rid of her". I told her that I was not angry and was only wishing for her to be healthier and have a happier life. I still do. The kindest act that I can give myself is working for mine and other people's happiness. When she let me go, that was the greatest act of kindness which she could give herself. Freedom from attachment.
Tuesday, September 18, 2018
Monday, September 17, 2018
I was listening to NPR this morning. There was an older woman, maybe in her 70s, who decided to ride out the storm in, I believe, New Bern, NC. She and her sisters cooked on a wood stove, watched as the water rose to their steps, did without power for 3 days. She basically said that living where they did as long as they did, you just come to accept there will be flooding and storms. She was just thankful that there was not too much damage. She did not complain and appeared to be happy while she spoke of her adventure. Acceptance comes in different ways, forms and types. Life acceptance may be hard at times. Making the best out of an unbearable situation goes a long way, especially to being kind to oneself.
Sunday, September 16, 2018
The rain today has been quite fierce at times and other times has been quiet with almost an unspoken presence. I liken this to my mind. At times, I try to tame it as thoughts go through which include anger, guilt, happiness, sorrow, pleasure, warmth etc. Other times it comes and goes and is almost still. I do enjoy the still times. I quite like the calm of snow. Walking in silence is close to what my idea of heaven may be like. Prior to the hurricane Florence, I could see the clouds beginning to form and stack on top of each other. Stillness teaching me to be calm.
Saturday, September 15, 2018
Today, I have been reading about courage: the courage to keep going when you think you can't, the courage to stand up for your beliefs, the courage to be yourself, the courage to accept changes even when it hurts, the courage to make a fool of yourself just because, the courage to let go. There are many acts of courage and kindness on the news this am with the hurricane hitting the coast and coming inland. It reminds me that time is fleeting. What can be better than to spend time enjoying family, ourselves and being kind to each other as well ourselves.
Friday, September 14, 2018
Today, the hurricane hit off the coast of North Carolina. Where I live, we are bracing for tropical storm winds, power outages and flooding. I am being optimistic, trying to live in the moment. Warning small people to stay indoors and lining up at list 5 flashlights for the three of us to use in case the power goes out. Today acceptance of what can happen and what may not happen is an idea I struggle with which I struggle at times. To let go of concern, prepare and have the courage to change what I can are all great concepts which may or not always work out but to which I aspire. May all be safe and loss of life low due to nature winds and rains.
Thursday, September 13, 2018
Today with the hurricane warnings and fear in my community, I can't help to think of the idea of acceptance. It will come... can't help it. If I did have a huge fan that I could use to blow Florence back to the Atlantic, I sure would, no question. I also think of how this acceptance can fit in to the rest of my life. Sometimes, hurricanes can be a little less and a little more complicated. These complications can include non weather life blips. I have had my share of these over the years. The older I am, the more these blips do not appear to affect me as much. More to come...
Wednesday, September 12, 2018
Today, I was thinking of death as I know too much about health. I recently have been having weird pain and bleeding. Today testing ruled out for the meantime cancer. I am glad. I was thinking though about death. Being nothing and non being. Buddhism teaches to detach from life and sense of self. Driving down the road, I considered what it would be like to not be. It didn't seem so scary after all. Still I feel happier with good news.
Tuesday, September 11, 2018
There are times in which I find it difficult to get out of my own way. Today is one of the days. Due to the kindness of others, I made it through another tough day. Pain, fatigue, spots before my eyes, fronts, (and the list goes on) help me to face my mortality and how much the body, mind connection can affect me. Those times in which I can keep my thoughts in the moment help me to feel better. We choose to go on and to take another day as its own. Hopefully with each clearing of the slate, we can grow and become kinder and happier.
Monday, September 10, 2018
Hurricane is coming.. that is what I heard the majority of the day. I don't know if the hurricane will come this weekend or earlier. If I have a crystal ball, I would be able to tell. Then, I would be able to tell when I will die as well as other items, I would rather not know. Unconditional life acceptance, again another concept by Albert Ellis, allows me to focus on the here and now. In this moment, the Jets are playing against the Lions, football, with no rain in site.
Sunday, September 9, 2018
Today, I was reading more regarding unconditional other acceptance by Albert Ellis and words by the Dalai Lama, the leader of Tibetan Buddhism. Both discuss the beauty of acceptance of others. Love the sinner not the sin. The Dalai Lama talks about acceptance of others and with this comes connections and intimacy. The idea that we are stronger together than apart, appears to ring true. Practice is a must, I believe, in acceptance of both ourselves and others. Possibly the revolution the world is needing can start with these simple steps. The beginning of change which can change ourselves, our families and our communities.
Saturday, September 8, 2018
I have been reading the work of Albert Ellis, a psychotherapist, who works in Behavioral Rational Emotive Therapy. It's kinda like Zen, kinda like Buddhism, but still a little different. I have been reading and thinking of concept USA or universal self acceptance. There is another concept called UOA or universal other acceptance, but since I have a little less than 300 days to go, I am saving it for another time. He discusses that because we live, we are: good, bad or indifferent. I was thinking reading this of my dog. He just is. He does not care if he bothers me when I am tired, if he needs to go out or eat. He just barks or wines. He guards the door and barks to help protect the family. He sleeps a lot since he is old. He is and does not seem to feel any regret about what he does. If he bites me because I am bothering him (trying to help him take a pill etc...), he moves on in a few minutes. We as animals may be able to learn from this. We are. That is the beauty in life. We exist for a short time and what we do here is just what we do here. Some people change the world; others just survive. Acknowledging this beauty of being may cause happiness for us and acceptance in just sitting back and taking it all in. Today, I am trying to do just that.
Friday, September 7, 2018
Today, focusing on just being, listening, feeling tired was not happiness producing in itself. I think though, it did help me from suffering more. I am grateful of having teachers around me. I am also grateful to have supporters around me. Now, in the moment, focusing on the benefits of human connections help me suffer less and enjoy life a little more.
Thursday, September 6, 2018
Day 65 Suffering likes company... but I can take it or leave it
Today, I wallowed again in my self pity. Although smiling did help me to be happier and kinder, I still felt a little tired and worn. I did notice part of suffering comes into place when I separate myself from others. I have seen myself apart from a team. As the NFL season starts, I can see where the team is a concept in which kindness and happiness is shared amongst each other. Separation can cause suffering leading to unhappiness.
Wednesday, September 5, 2018
Day 64 Not OK land....
Well Ok land I have decided is much better than not ok land. Today, not ok land won. It's bad when your own therapist is having to hit you upside your head to "get it". Maybe, honesty is the best policy. Tomorrow I'll try this idea. I will focus on smiling more and being thick headed more. Sometimes, life isn't about me. That is a good thing today.
Tuesday, September 4, 2018
Day 63 OK LAND
Today is ok land day. That is a day in which it is ok to be ok. Possibly, this may be the kindest day as sometimes striving too much or not enough can lead to disappointment. I believe this is its own kind of suffering. I am striving for feeling 0 give or take a negative to positive 3. As the saying goes, the higher you go the farther you fall. I am good being on the ground. I do suffer at times from acrophobia.
Monday, September 3, 2018
Day 62 Choices
Kindness and happiness are choices, like milk and cookies are choices. Some choices cause more pain and others cause more joy. How to change a thought or change an impression is one of the most important practices one can master. How to choose depends on managing the thoughts enveloping the emotions. I think therefore I feel.
Sunday, September 2, 2018
Day 61 Dragons, pandas and dogs... oh my
We are. That's all. We can't be something other than us. I am who am with quirks, crabbiness and more. After spending the day working on and off, watching rerun television and going to the movies with my family, I have been indoctrinated more into this idea. We are best when we are who we are, baggage and all. Kung fu panda 3 says it all when Po teaches his family and friends to be the best version of themselves. Alpha showed how a young man and a wolf can trust in themselves banding together to find their way back to their home. Kedra, the human ,led with his heart to spare the life of the wolf, Alpha, and thus the journey begins. This listening to the heart happens over and over again in movies, including How to train your dragon series. Believing in self is kindness at it's best. Again, leading to happiness in who we are as it is difficult to change the person we are meant to be. Maybe, that is a good thing. Some religions believe we are born to be a certain being in order to honor God. Some religions believe we are born; blank slate and all. Whichever is right, I believe, does not matter. The idea is that we are able to be and grow for ourselves, no one else. In the movies, this growth leads to life, happiness and growth of everyone involved, family and friends alike.
Saturday, September 1, 2018
Day 60 Kindness never gets old
Today, I had watched a part of John McCaine's funeral today. I had already perceived him as a honest and honorable man with high standards and ideas. I was surprised to hear what President Obama said regarding the person he was and how genuinely kind he was. He showed kindness with how he seemed to be true to himself. Being kind to oneself may be to respect and accept who one is.
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