Wednesday, July 12, 2006


It all started in 1960, the year I was born. That's when my troubles began....

LOL! It's good to be back to my little blog after a self-imposed foray into less enjoyable writing as I smashed all the written requirements for a graduate course into 3 months. I wonder just how amused the prof was to receive my last paper emailed at 3:01 am on June 29 for a June 30 deadline. Apparently I have no shame.

My gleeful 13 you was even more delighted when my husband made the observation that my academic style hadn't changed much in 20 years. Oh, I retorted, but now I really am too busy for words. Twenty years ago I just thought I was. My voice trailed off as a tiny idea about habit energy arose in my mind. Indeed it had occurred to me that this was indeed a case of "Different decade, same behavior" along with the realization that there are just some kinds of discomfort with which I am quite comfortable. In fact it turns out that many other parts of my life are marked by thriving on a bit of adrenaline - having to pare down priorities, think quick, work fast. It's not so admirable but I noticed that when I received my grade in the mail, I had a distinct feeling, not of accomplishment or pride so much as of winning. This kind of stuff insinuates itself into my life and even starts to become part of who I think I am. Don Quixote tilting at windmills-at best. Suffering, causes of suffering, clinging to suffering. Groan.

Cut to Buddhanet Audio. I am listening to Pasada, from the Edinburgh Buddhist Centre, reading a translation of the Heart Sutra that is new to me. I am struck by how tiny differences in the translation open the door to new understanding. For instance, this translation talks about Avalokita being indifferent to any kind of personal attainment rather than "there is no attainment". It refers to the bodhisattvas "dwelling without thought covering" which seems to me to be a great image of what my usual translation calls "obstacles of mind". It goes on to say that because of this reliance on perfect understanding the bodhisattvas "overcome what can upset" ie. illusion and says that one should know prajnaparamita as the great mantra, the "allayer of suffering, in truth. For what could go wrong?" All this to contemplate and I've only gotten to the second of 14 mp3 files. You can hear it at Warning- You will fall in love with Pasada's voice.

So I am taking another time out...actually going on family retreat for a week with the monks and nuns from the Green Mountain Dharma Center and Maple Grove Monastery in Vermont. I'd like to take some time to see how "what can upset" is in fact, illusion and consider how I can loosen my grasp a little without feeling like I'm losing, or I'm not me anymore, or that there is a solid me to hang on to. I'm up for a little less suffering and know that with a bit of courage, and support from the sangha, it is entirely possible. I know this thanks to all of you who keep practicing and sharing your practice, even when I'm "on leave".

Thanks for your faithfulness.

Authentic Kindness of the Heart


Blogger Mugo said...

With a friendly wave and a bow.

But that my writing project was even half completed.

Write's an offering.

11:54 AM  

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