| ANNE WILLIAMSON |
I'm sitting here listening to my husband try to teach our daughter how to calm down through breathing. The source of her exasperation: bread. She loves it and usually has to wait for it to toast and get smeared with peanut butter. This lapse in time often proves too much, and she begins to meltdown. Of course, her response is disproportionate - as her parents, at least one of our jobs is to make sure, as an adult, she doesn't erupt in tears at the bagel shop; but, I do relate to her passion, even admire it a little.
This struggle echoes in my spiritual journey: I want peace, wholeness, the "undistracted state" as Buddhist teacher Pema Chödrön calls it, but I also fear this state will tamper my passion. I love bread too... er, I mean life and justice. Can we be both passionate about life and "zen"? It's confusing because both eastern and western spiritual philosophies have taught life itself is the distraction. But, isn't life also the joy? Isn't it the people and environments, the food and good fights that offer us meaning, that offer purpose?
This is where I love when Pema Chödrön, in the below video, talks about being wide-awake. Yes, life can distract; this is undeniable. But, detoxing from these distractions doesn't mean the end of joy, passion, purpose. Instead, the undistracted state means we're wide-awake to experience life more deeply, to taste more acutely, to fight fairer, to love better. It's life #nofilter.
LEARN, LISTEN, LOVE... and add your voice to WAYfinding this week as we explore these ideas and more:
Tuesday, 7:00 - 9:00p
Wednesday, 7:00 - 9:00p
Wednesday, 7:00 - 9:00p (Mom's Group)
Thursday, 12:00 - 1:15p
Groups are hosted in rotating homes, but generally, they're held in the SoBro area. Email me for this week's locations.
Watch, listen to, the below excerpt from Pema Chödrön's 2006 interview with Bill Moyers.
What is stirring in you? What questions, wonderings, insights? Keep asking and listening...
Be silent, still, a moment. Speak these words to yourself, aloud perhaps. What do you hear? Keep listening...
Out of what is stirring in you, set a loving intention for this week. Share it with a/Another.
My offering... Take a few minutes to journal your thoughts on the following questions:
Do I feel wide-awake?
What are my distractions? That is, I sense that if I got rid of – or brought back into balance – this habit, hobby, false tape playing repeat in my head, value, “time suck,” etc., there would be more space for the things that matter, for my purpose(s) perhaps.
How are my distractions serving me right now? What are they distracting me from?