Thursday, February 27, 2014

What's in the Front Row?

It's time to start making space in my solarium for the spring plants. I'm potting up the rooted cuttings of many of my houseplants. I need more space even though I've decided not to start seedlings (although it's not too late to change my mind).

So it's time to take the front row plants and give them seats either in the balcony or the pit orchestra (i.e., my sweetie's music studio in the basement). Then i can push other, younger, more tender plants into the sunny front row.

What are some of our front row re-actions? Impatience? Anxiety? Frustration? Worry? Planning? Yearning?

The Buddha spoke a very clear poem on just this subject:

The thought manifests as the word;
the word manifests as the deed;
the deed develops into habit;
and habit hardens into character.

So watch the thoughts and its ways with care,
and let it spring from love
born out of concern for all beings.

We take one of our bad habits and start working backwards, mindfully.
We mindfully suppress the deed, the action.
We mindfully suppress the words on the tips of our tongues. Oh, this is hard work.
We mindfully feel the thoughts and emotions in our body. Oh, this is painful.

After several workouts of our mindfulness muscles over the course of a month or two, we will be surprised by the occasional arising of patience and kindness, concern and compassion.
Born out of concern for all beings, ourselves first of all.

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