Friday, June 6, 2014

Daylily Tubers

At the bottom of my compost pile lives an orange daylily with all its tubers ready to spring back to life. It's been suffocating there for almost a year--no dirt, exposed to the air, without any life-sustaining greenery, and under a few hundred pounds of garbage. I know it's orange because i dig out every orange daylily i find, in favor of the yellow ones or the pink ones.

Usually, i lay the orange daylily tubers on my dry-and-die pile and leave them there for an entire summer to cook in the sun. I now believe there are a few things that will survive environmental collapse besides cockroaches: ticks and orange daylilies.

To uproot our own bad habits requires as much persistence as an orange daylily. The roots of anger, irritation, and frustration, for instance, are considered to be so strong that a moment's anger can undo years of good karma. We constantly guard our own mental happiness and safety against surges of anger.

Mindfulness of anger is the strong spotlight of sun that can wither this unwelcome visitor. Simply feel how anger feels in the body. Feel it. Feel it. Keep your mindfulness right on that unpleasant, uncomfortable sensation. Use noting to name it: "Irritation. Irritation. Irritation."

By the end of the summer, i can safely throw the desiccated daylily tubers back into the compost pile.

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