“Conquer the angry one by not getting angry; conquer the wicked by goodness; conquer the stingy by generosity, and the liar by speaking the truth.”
– Gautama Buddha, The Dhammapada
My desire for tenderness, compassion, and generosity are potent these days. It’s midwinter, and all I want to do is make sure that hearts are warm, and that we are gathering to propel each other’s dreams forward–working together to unearth any dormant resources or to uncover the pathways that will move humanity into inspiring systems that can create beauty.
DAILY, WE REACH OUT
Most days I run into fear, anxiety, anger, self-doubt, stinginess, or regret in some form or another. I’m hoping to be more present and aware when the ego creeps up by tending to these daily rituals that will keep me focused on contributing to this good world and the humans who inhabit it.
Light a candle in the dark of the morning. Take notice of your breath. Notice if you have any fears, any self-doubt, any feelings of scarcity or possessiveness. Notice. Then present yourself with other options. If you are worried a new project isn’t gaining traction, reach out to friends or colleagues that you admire. Or, better yet, take a break from your own work, and be a light for someone else–who can you give your time, your heart for an hour or two?
Find some inspiration in music or any art that you particularly enjoy. We love art because we love patterns. How can you tap into an art world of ideas, patterns, composition, and imagination to move forward on a project? Let the work of others inspire you–continue and expand upon conversations that have been going on for centuries.
Each day we acquire new knowledge, new hopes, new wounds, new insight, new resources. The truth is, none of it is really ours. How does a person actually “own” knowledge? Do we even really “own” our wounds, or can we let them pass through us, and let them exit us with tenderness? Can you be vulnerable without being dramatic? How can your new insight help someone who is struggling? What knowledge did you gain that can help a friend? Perhaps you are sitting on an abundance of resources that need to start flowing into the community. Write down the things you gained during the day, and identify a person or group who you would like to share it with.
– Jean Vanier