I reported last week that I’d moved my altar to the library in a fit of rearranging. It was the best thing I’ve done for myself in quite a while. Seems with some physical rearranging, I made some mental and spiritual shifts as well.
The library is where I do most of my work, whether it’s writing, working on music or a show, or just taking care of the details of life. It’s my spot. And I knew that moving the altar to that room and putting it right in my field of vision was going to change things. Now I’m able to go to it over and over throughout my day, and that’s exactly what I’ve been doing. But more than that, I’m able to see it constantly, whether I go to it or not. I can see the Buddha. I can see the books on spirituality, religion, philosophy, and relationships, I can see the candles and incense and prayer beads. I can see a collection of effort to create stillness and thought within myself. I can see how badly I want to know myself in a real and deep way. The only way to do that is to spend the required time in relationship with who I am.
Who I am currently is hopeful. Without hope, I believe we die. But I am also saddened by and quite sick of what I see and hear going on around me.
The reasons for that are as individual as we are, but the root cause is always fear.
Fear of other. Fear of lack. Fear of admitting that sadness is what would really come forth if we dropped the vexation and rage.
No one wants to be sad. It’s looked upon as a weakness, while anger, especially the righteous kind, is welcomed as some sort of super power.
Not surprising, considering what we’ve been shown for so long by most sources of information around us.
It makes me want to sit at my altar permanently. However, I was not made for a hermitage.
Today’s Pema Chödron compassion card said this: “Always meditate on whatever provokes resentment.” I’m exploring why I am so put out with the constant conversation about who’s right and who’s wrong and who should have control of this, that, or the other, why I’m so annoyed over knee-jerk reactions, people who make assumptions based on less than a thimble’s worth of knowledge, parrots who’ve never had an original thought… I could go on. I’m just frustrated over it all. At the bottom of my frustration (anger) is, yep, sadness. I’m sad that I feel misunderstood by those who judge me. I’m sad that what I see as the right side of things is seen by so many as wrong. I’m sad that we never seem to really get anywhere because no one wants to give even a little in their position. I’m sad that that inflexibility has caused us to damn near break. I’m sad that we are where we are, so divided, over the rights of others and whether they should have them, over conservative vs. liberal, over fundamentalism vs. progressiveness, over wearing a freaking mask or not when really, what is the harm in making someone else feel better in your presence, even if you do believe that 125,000 dead (and counting) in this country alone is a hoax.
Why are we so contrary? Why are we so very afraid that someone is going to take something away from us?
I can only ask myself how I am guilty. I can then only resolve to learn how to mend the wounds in myself that make me susceptible to behaviors that I don’t like to see in others. It is the hardest thing I will ever do. But now is the time, isn’t it?
It always is.
Peace, love, and happy Wednesday.