‘Living a Non Monastic Life (with emails and other dreaded tasks)’
Memories back to my recent time in the redwood trees and forests of Northern California…
It seems so easy to be present when immersed in nature on a meditation retreat. When each crunchy step in a forest brings piercing sun rays through giant trees. When eating humble sattvic food you didn’t have to lift a finger to make it enjoyed in thick heat whilst seated outside with nowhere else to be. When the meditations are deep and powerful, and you can laze around afterwards.
My constant work is to put aside my thoughts that this is the only place in which I can have those experiences. That I can experience the richness and beauty of life even in traffic while I realize my fuel light has been on now for the last two trips. When even just a single ‘bing’ on my computer feels my groaning-with-overflow email inbox can set off twinges of anxiety. I can be as present when AFL boots are left behind and need to be driven into school. I can be grounded whilst thinking WTF at Sydneys organic fruit prices. I can be expanded whilst spending an increasing amount of time searching for the ‘special place’ in which I stored every receipt from our trip that my book keeper needs.
This is our work. The daily job of being a human, whilst treading the path to be more connected, conscious and creative. It doesn’t go down in monasteries alone. It’s here and now. Let’s enjoy it, and take it on with all our creative intelligence and heart.
“Live the Self that fills the whole Universe” Sawaki Rodjo
To remind me of this daily beauty of life, I really enjoy reading and re-reading Meditations by Marcus Aurelius and How To Cook Your Life by Dogen with commentary by Kosho Uchiyama Roshi. I also love recommendations for reading, and some of you have sent through some crackers. Please don’t hesitate to share!