Sunday, September 29, 2013

Hard to Swallow

"It's time to make pesto," i tell my neighbor.
"Oh, my basil turned brown," he sighs.

Wait a minute. Isn't "brown" basil dried basil? The stuff you buy at the grocery store?

Yes, the prime time for making pesto would have been August, but once those late-September green-with-brown-spots basil leaves are chopped up in the food processor and soaked in olive oil, my taste buds won't know the difference.

What else do we reject out-of-hand because it doesn't meet our standards of beauty or pleasing-ness?
We can even reject a spiritual path or outright wisdom because it rubs us the wrong way. Oh, no, we think to ourselves. That can't be right.

One friend, for instance, rejects Buddhism because, she mis-quotes, "'Life is suffering' can't be right. Why, life is beautiful!"

The Buddha tells us that stress exists. It's a difficult-to-swallow message, but we don't have to look to far to see that, yes, our life is stressful at times. The Buddha then offers us a remedy--a path to not only reduce stress, but to release stress altogether.

You don't have to swallow the whole path at once. Just take bite-size pieces. Just for today, notice stress when it happens.

Now, i'm going back to making pesto because i salivate at the idea of swallowing that :)

Photos from and

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