Thursday, May 28, 2009
Seriously though - how is everybody doing out there? I have a feeling that most of us connecting here on this blog are the mid to upper part of this downturn. SO do we know anybody out there who might be struggling to stay afloat? Financially challenged or facing a health obstacle and feeling like there is nowhere to turn? Maybe they are just sad... a lot... and cannot shake the blues.
This is a REALLY important time in history to open our awareness to encompass places even beyond our usual kindnesses and comfortings.
I have been re-reading a great book by Cheri Huber called THE DEPRESSION BOOK. Although Zen tactics are a little different than ours in Tibetan flavored Buddha life... there are some GREAT little tips and tricks for deepening even during our "low" times.
There is a seemingly Universal need to feel different than we are. The lonely want more company, the public personae want more privacy, the hungry want more nourishment, the overindulged want less temptation, the strange want more acceptance and the blended background want more foreground.
It is so unknown to us the power that our mind has and the fact that it is all but writing the script that plays out as your life.
Long ago we gave our ego carte blanche to show us all the potential that it possesses. And now as we live out seemingly "real and concrete" scenarios in life - we have no idea that we can reclaim the steering wheel.
It reminds me of that Looney Tunes cartoon where the animator's pencil descends from the sky and wreaks havoc with Daffy Duck... anyone remember that one?
Oddly there is some truth to its parody. Our unchecked discursive thought process is that pencil from "out there" simply randomly editing our life and we are so busy reacting to the pencil tip changes... we do not realize we could reclaim our grip on le stylo.
So today - through a random generous act - see if you cannot begin to draw the scene you want. Now there is a rule here. NOBODY can know what your kind act was. Seriously. You need to find something you can do for someone that you can resist "owning" later. Mums the word. You can drop a coin quietly in a sleeping transient's change cup. Maybe leave a flower on the doorstep of a lonely neighbor... or put an extra crisp dollar bill under the pillow of a college dorm mate who is out of work. Pick up the trash on your whole block while nobody is around...
It does not matter the "size of the kindness" - it is more about the habit of performing the compassionate activity without any "hook" of recognition in it for you.
Now go on... like Oprah's angel network... or whatever... just go perform a "Random Act of Kindness and Senseless Act of Beauty"!
You can come back here and say "done" without any specifics... or if you are DYING to share your kindness but do not want to violate the parameters of the exercise... you can post anonymously what you did (but no naming yourself or the recipient because people are clever... and might figure it out.)
SO... go spread you some ~Joy~. Can you commit anonymous kindness before the day is over? Or if you read this post too late for that - can you do something kind by lunchtime tomorrow?
The challenge is on. Help yourself through support groups. Help others silently through stealth generosity... you'll be THRILLED with the outcome. Even if you forgot you earned it by the time the big pencil drops down to paint a kindness in your life.
Now scoot... you got fairy dust to sprinkle.
Saturday, May 23, 2009
Name the 2 significant references of this weird quote:
"All your bases are belong to us."
Happy long weekend too!
Unrelated... Adam Lambert was soooooooo robbed. I didn't watch A.I. but I smell a rat.
Sent via BlackBerry by AT&T
Friday, May 22, 2009
~First~ of all, the dog was a sweetheart... very cooperative which was nice cause we were both (the dog and I) tentative.
So I get to my feet after the quick exam... I return to the front desk... and I notice a small tear in the knee of the jeans I am wearing.
No biggie really, I figure I compromised them while getting into the various positions to restrain by canine pal.
Later... say four or five hours later... Dr. P and I stop at Starbuck's to unwind from a long day at the clinic... and lo... AND be-holed... my knee area now has about three small rips in various places and of varying lengths.
I am feeling oddly self conscious now... like I shop at Moths 'R Us... but I carry on, somewhat lifted by my iced Chai Tea.
Get to temple to finish some office work - and GOSH dern it... multiple new tears and holes. I am just flabbergasted. What's up? Old Navy? You trying to make this Buddhist a nudist?
So anyway - we are celebrating 2 exciting and simultaneous auspiciousnesseseses today. 1)The 49th day of His Holiness' tugdam (sometimes spelled tukdam.) 2)The completion of the initial and foundational recordings that will evolve into the Lineage of Queens CD.
CD BABY has already recognized the preliminary sampler called Trilogy as an editor's pick. Woo-hoo. That is Jetsunma paving the road for women specifically and all beings in general to exit the cycles of endless suffering. No small feat. And to a groovy beat!
Alright. Just felt like amusing you with the disintegrating denim anecdote. It has been a hella crazy week trying to get up to speed at work and conquering some personal goals (both through projects and acupuncture... if you are within 90 miles of Poolesville - you should get you some needles from Yeshi Dolma!!)
I am happy with the small and large progress I am seeing from my treatments!
Okay... back to flexing my hulk thighs and watching Bill Bixby's jeans give way to Lou Ferrigno's!
Don't make me angry... you wouldn't like me when I am angry!!!!
(Cue close up on green contacts and start green spraying of bad hulk wig).
Thursday, May 21, 2009
Teach them all a "Cue" and commence with aforementioned shenanigans.
Yeah so, that idiot dancing alone at the Shady Grove Metro Stop this morning... uh yep, that'd be me.
No seriously, you know what I did do?
I confessed to my co-worker Catherine that I was "that guy" from Tuesday. The one that is halfway up the escalator when they announce the departure of the train. And so I leap into a modest jog and try to act like I am not RUNNING for the train I am SOOOOOO gonna miss. And at the last minute - as the doors are already closing... I push myself to JUMP through shutting doors. But I do NOT ~make it~ all the way.
So I Prrrryyyyyy the doors apart as the robot voice lady is exclaiming "Step back, this train is leaving the station"...
I finally squeeze myself through and ~vwoomp~ the doors shut behind me... on my backpack. Um yeah - gettin' the visual? Me... inside train... my bag (still on my back)... protruding outside the train.
I have to turn and WEEEEEEDGE the doors open again to FORCE my bag (like a breech birth of Red Nylon and zippers) through these surprisingly tenacious doors. All the while being assailed by the alert tones at their highest decibal "BING-bing-BING-bing-BiNg"... in case there was possibly ~ONE~ commuter either on train or platform who might ACCIDENTALLY continue reading their paper and miss my moment of pure and utter NON-cOoLnEsS.
The face is RADIATING humiliation now. One of those blushes like those red heating lamps that hotels used to have in the bathrooms...
But... I ~got~ my bag through.
Next stop... Rockville... I slip off the cart I fought so hard to board... and into the adjacent cart - where I pretend that ~THIS~ is the real start of my commute. Best to spread the rumor now while the story was still fresh and malleable.
ME:"Wow... did you guys hear about the BAG LADY that got caught in the doors back in Shady Grove?"
Train full of strangers: *DEAD silence*
Alright... only the actual changing of trains is true - I did not begin that nasty decoy rumor. But I did get lots of attention that morning.
I'd of made headlines too... if those 300 people hadn't suddenly broken into perfectly choreographed dance the moment we arrived at White Flint station.
They were wicked-awesome!
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
Spring ideas percolating. Blowing dust off my interactive blog ideas. Want this space in cyberness to be fun & useful! (See Faster than Kudzu) Must punch a clock today like most... but conspiring to inspire new income modalities. Read TIME mag current cover story. This reminds me of telegrams. STOP. Have a great day. Don't STOP. Om mani pedme hung. :)
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
I made one of my famous little "films" and then lost the thing somehow by moving a file of photos that were involved. (See MERCURY RETROGRADE!)
But here is my little visual offering to Jetsunma's "The Promise"...
May it bring you some happiness for the next 4 minutes and 9 seconds! : )
Tuesday, May 12, 2009
Saturday, May 9, 2009
CBS did a quick little piece that included our temple's spinoff non-profit The Garuda Aviary. This is mostly footage from Mira Tweti's lecture tour. We connected when she promoted her book at the open house for Garuda's new building. They interviewed Jetsunma and also filmed Riggs and Pema and a few others around the "Big Bird House"!
Reminds me of when NPR had Gillian Ferris Kohl do the post Katrina piece on Tara's Babies. We spent hours talking to her - she did a very thorough walk around and talked to many of us. And then we laughed the day we huddled around the crank radio for the broadcast... because the most off hand comments we made are the ones that ended up in the story. I remember the hotdog quote. I felt like a dork! ; ) But that is why she is the journalist and I was the poop scooper.
We have lots more to educate people about the horrible truths of Parrot trade, the benefits of palliative care for companion animals -vs- euthanasia and other important conversations on behalf of struggling pets. I am so grateful for this type of "Prime Time" exposure. -We are overall happy with the piece! And Mira has an amazing "Duck"-umetary coming out someday...
Katie Couric's crew spent a lot of time at KPC that day and edited it down to an honorable mention within the report... sometimes the novelty of the exotic path goes leaps and bounds toward getting attention for the important work going on out there. Support your local bird rescue!!
If you missed the live airing... check it out (but first a word from their sponsor!)
Thursday, May 7, 2009
So anywho... Shall we blog?
An insight! Okay... a blind man walks into a bar. No wait, wrong lead sentence. Okay - sorry if I offended any blind readers. Wait, that doesn't even make sense???
Let's start over. Take 2...
I was just watching Jetsunma's Thursday night class online... and it was on a topic that if we ALL studied EVERY DAY - would revolutionize the world as we know it.
It was about the faults of this life. Hey... HEY! ~PUT~ that hovering finger over your mouse down and keep reading. Right. OKAY. So now. Do not click away because this sounds like a somber topic. It is, as you recall from the title (and my re-mentioning of it)... an INSIGHT we are sharing together.
Death is coming. Maybe it is not on the Red-Eye flight and landing TOMORROW> but then again, who knows? Surely those attending a Turkish wedding earlier this week did not expect the outcome they met with. Those in Santa Barbara who awoke yesterday thinking hmmm... will our city catch fire today?? I bet they were shocked. Those who may be seeming a plague and pest to the rest of the world because they have the sniffles and cough, and thus may be carrying H1N1 swine flu... do you believe that ANY of them had penciled in their date with the oink virus destiny?
I highly suspect otherwise. So it is just ALWAYS, always, ~aLwAyS~ good mindfulness to ask... "if I were to die tomorrow... what would that involve?"
A coincidence. Sharp left turn here. Possibly off topic. We will have to see if I bring it all full circle...
I was working at an event last Saturday. It was is Wheaton, MD which ~prior~ to last Saturday was an unknown place to me. At the end of the Walk for The Homeless PAWS (several rescue organizations trying to adopt out their furry inmates) my office manager Tina drove me to the Metro so I could train back over to Shady Grove. But about halfway home (track goes from MD to NOVA to DC to MD) I passed beneath DC... I decided to hop off at Dupont Circle. I was journaling a bit on the ride and it is funny because even as I wrote, I sensed an EVENT horizon. Was restless and squirrly to take a chance and deviate from my course.
So I meandered through the streets of DC flitting from shiny object to shiny object. Found an ATM, craved various potential edibles and ~FINALLY~ resigned myself to eat at Five Guys after about an hour of self debate.
Well, slap-your-mama-shocker... A total look of disbelief must have been on my face as I identified a customer that arrived 15 minutes later as a friend of mine from high school. We had been in touch recently via Facebook, but had not actually crossed paths since 1988. To run into him in Dupont Circle seemed just amazing to me. Considering I know maybe 2 or 3 people at all in this area (outside of my Sangha)... and that I was not even really supposed to be there at Five Guys... and that I took so long to decide on actually GOING to Five Guys and really had intended to eat much earlier and elsewhere.
Well I call that a big MOTHER GOOSE of a good coincidence! Karma of connection - if you will.
A Yummy Meal.
John and I treated ourselves to a spontaneous night at The Outback Steakhouse last night. We were in need of a fun if not overpriced evening meal after a CHALLENGING week (a WHOLE blog post could be written on our Tuesday night mishap for meeting at the MEtro station... but I have tired typing hands so it will have to wait.
So we drove from the Shady Grove metro center to the Outback in Germantown and partook of some tasty beef and yumminess.
So was has any of this got to do with each other?
I don't know. But let me attempt to wrap it neatly together.
We could die anytime. And few of us know where or when it will happen. On average most of us will still live quite a while. But there are NO guarantees.
So I say listen to your instincts. Is there a reason that a nagging impulse is telling you to get off the train? I cannot tell you why I allowed myself to indulge in a shockingly spontaneous walkabout that led me to an overpriced burger in DC but ALSO reunited me with a friend I had not laid eyes on in 20 years.
So today, pay attention to that distracting voice that says "was I really put on the planet to do THIS REPETITIVE routine day in and day out?"
You may still have to attend to those all important commitments... but you may also find yourself staring at a Jedi Master on a swampy planet that seems so far off the course you were choosing... that NOTHING can prepare you for the potent learning scenario you have arrived in ~seemingly~ by coincidence.
Enjoy your meal. Challenge you usual thoughts. And do so intelligently and quickly before you grow bored, fall asleep at the wheel of your life, and go flying down the road to arrive at a destination, when the DRIVE was the critical part of the event.
All this advice and I am sober and unmedicated. Wow. Lucky you! ; )
Friday, May 1, 2009
Maybe Mr. President will send us an autographed copy of a photo. Now THAT would make me verrrrrrrrrry proud!
Bo knows Blogs! ; )