Monday, April 22, 2013

An Amaryllis and the 4 Directions

My amaryllis are blooming with their 4 wonderful, large flowers, facing in the 4 directions.

If you have lived (or stayed in a hotel) near a mosque, you know the P.A. system booms out a resonant call to prayer 5 times a day. No matter which direction you live in, you can hear the call a half-a-mile away. This reminder of our spirituality pervades the entire area around the mosque.

My amaryllis is silent, but it reminds me to send loving-kindness out to the 4 directions. As the Buddha said,

     I will abide pervading one-quarter* with a mind imbued with loving-kindness,
     Likewise the second**, likewise the third, likewise the fourth.
     So above and below, around and everywhere,
     and to all as to myself.

     I will abide pervading the all-encompassing world with a mind imbued with loving-kindness,
     Abundant, exalted, immeasurable,
     without hostility, and without ill-will.

To hear this chant, listen here.

* one-quarter of the universe ( I think of this as one of the cardinal directions.)
** the second quarter (I think of this as the next cardinal direction, etc.)

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