Today I would like to share something that my teacher and mentor, Diana, shared with me a few weeks ago. After the class I was wishing that I had what she shared in writing, the next day when I went back to the studio, there it was printed out and left on the desk. So here goes….thanks Diana!
No matter what you have faced, joy and renewal wait your return. When you remember you can open your eyes to the mystery of life around you. Sense the blessings of the earth in the perfect arc of a ripe tangerine, the taste of warm, fresh bread, the circling flight of birds, the lavender color of the sky shining in the late afternoon rain puddle, the million times we pass other beings, in our cars and shops and out among the trees without crashing, conflict or harm.
Spiritual practice should not be confused with grim duty. It is the laugher of the Dalai Lama and the wonder born with every child. Maurice Sendak, author of the Where the Wild Things Are, depicts this spirit in the story of a boy who wrote to him. “He sent me a charming card with a drawing. I loved it. I answer all my children’s letters – sometimes very hastily – but this one I lingered over. I sent him a postcard and I drew a picture of a Wild Thing on it. I wrote, “Dear Jim, I loved your card.” Then I got a letter back from his mother and she said, “Jim loved your card so much he ate it.” That to me was one of the highest compliments I’ve ever received. He didn’t care that it was an original drawing or anything. He saw it, he loved it, he ate it.”
Yes, we need to carefully navigate through the hard times. But the whole world is our temple, to be tended with love and dignity no matter what. As Martin Luther King Jr. exhorted us all, “If a person sweeps streets for a living, he should sweep them as Michelangelo painted, as Beethoven composed music, as Shakespeare wrote his plays.”