Wednesday, October 23, 2002

Jogger Honey

I'm trying out a new journal. This one is powered by Radio Userland. I seem to have lost my archives in Blogger, and it's difficult getting help with problems. So.... I'm still experimenting to see if I can find a perfect home for my online diary. My new diary is at Jogger Honey. Or you can do a web search on "Jogger Honey".

Wednesday, October 16, 2002

Tsoks, buddhism, and my sangha

Yesterday we had a tsok in our buddhist class. A tsok is a tibetan buddhist potluck. It's about a 1 1/2 hour series of chants and singing, followed by sharing food. It's a really beautiful ceremony.

I had had a bad day and was feeling somewhat irritable about things. As we prepared the food together, I started ranting about some of the things/people who were bothering me. One of my sangha members stopped what she was doing and came over to me and hugged me. She didn't say anything, she just hugged me. Then another person came over and hugged me. Then it was infectious, and everyone spontaneously hugged each other. It was really a beautiful experience, because our hugs were not superficial, they were from the heart.

Later, as I sat there and listened to the chanting and singing, I thought about how much I loved those sounds. Tsoks are a time of releasing all beefs that you have with the world, and a time of reminding yourself to live in the moment.

At the end of the tsok I was (as I am with all tsoks) so full of love for the people in my sangha, and forgiveness for the people in my life who stress me out and for myself for letting myself get stressed out.

I cannot begin to describe the things I learn from the people in my sangha. The buddhist philosophy of loving all beings, and the practice which teaches you how to do this really speak for themselves. I don't think I've ever met a group of people who are as incredibly grounded in their view of the world as these people. What happens when you're grounded through meditation and studying the teachings is that you start interacting with people from a different place -- accepting them on their terms, and being able to hear what they're saying. You're able to feel compassion for people who are perceived as difficult for others. You're less inclined to impose your views on people. You don't have to prove anything to the world, you don't have to prove that your religion is better than anyone else's, you don't have to prove how much time you spend praying and meditating, you don't have to prove how much you love everyone. You just are you, and by being you, all that seems to naturally be evident.

It's sad that it took cancer for me to do the searching to find this spiritual path, because I feel that I might have had a really spectacular life if I had learned the things I'm learning years ago. I'm grateful that I did my spiritual search and that I did find this path, though, because whatever life I have left is going to be meaningful and full of peace. That's a really nice place to be.

Tuesday, October 15, 2002

Duct Tape Rules!!!