Have recently had lots of fear doubt and worry arise over a variety of situations. All of them very mundane and of garden variety ordinariness.
Yet, that is where the heart of it all is.
The ordinary, the mundane.
That’s my life.
The tendency to put away recurring trivialities or small discomforts of mind and feeling is engendered by the same instinct to want to change the big discomforts and the dramatic feelings. Those things that have long tails (tales), attached and keep me in dis-ease, dis-comfort and dis-com-bob-u-lated.
We each have our own list of recurring “dis” likes.
When I can just leave things be for a bit, they usually go away on their own, often rather quickly. This past bunch, however, seemed to hang around for a longish time and really brought forward the practice of “putting up with” and “leaving alone” and “refraining from” and not “reacting” etc: Then discovering that after all that effort all I had really done was be patient.
Hmmmm. You live and you learn. Usually not right away; for me anyway.
A couple of stray thoughts, as opposed to those organized, well trained and obedient thoughts.
I heard a Zen teacher recently reference a Buddhist teacher’s emphasis on the power of Vows in helping one get past one’s addictions, especially alcoholism. The teaching was apparently offered in contrast to the AA method of members identifying as alcoholics when they introduce themselves at meetings. Apparently that was seen as living in the problem by constantly stating/re-inforcing what the problem is, in contrast to having made a vow to never drink again and then just never drinking again.
From an AA view point, and for me from a Buddhist view point, the problems(s) of addiction have a spiritual basis, are a spiritual problem (spiritus), and have a spiritual solution. What the Buddhist teacher that was being referred to did not understand, apparently, is that in AA one makes the Vow to not drink, every day. For that day. Because, as the old saying goes, the sunrise does not guarantee the sunset.
The Alleyways of the World are littered with people who have made the vow to never drink again. The whole point of AA is to stop and stay stopped long enough to go through a 12 step process resulting in a spiritual awakening sufficient to be able to understand the deeper meaning of what a “Vow”may be, and that takes time. Sometimes years.
For me, the true commonality of all spiritual endeavor is the process, not the event. The process is what keeps us all going. The great teachers in most paths I’m familiar with, will often point out that when you “get’ enlightened or “find” God (or It’s representative),that’s when the real “work” starts.
It don’t get a whole lot easier. It’s still hard to “read” and “understand”, but thankfully the print is bigger!
Also, today walking towards the library with a couple of books to return I was momentarily intrigued with the thought that if I got hit by a cement truck, squished; and the books were thrown to the street; if in the aftermath, someone cleaning up the “scene” would sweep up those books and perhaps wonder about, or have an opinion, on my choice of reading material.
We always seem to be making connections with others, even in unforeseen ways.