In last week's Mindful Monday post, I quoted a passage from Charlotte Joko Beck's book, Nothing Special, about the rocky road of mindfulness and meditation practice. Beck notes that everyone's life path is filled with sharp rocks, and if we practice well, we begin to see them as diamonds and "appreciate the opportunity that they give, [embracing] them rather than running away from them. This is the end of complaints about our life."
Though the end of complaining about life sounds fabulous, it's hard to imagine it's possible to do by welcoming the very problems and people we find so hard. Beck counters by saying that opening to difficulty rather than hiding from it or substituting something for it helps us understand that
"an enjoyable life includes heartache, disappointment, grief. That's part of the flow of life, to let such experiences be. They come and go, and the grief finally dissolves into something else. But if we are complaining and holding on and being rigid (which is what we like to do), then we have very little enjoyment. If we have been aware of the process of our lives, including moments that we hate, and are just aware of our hating [...], that very awareness is life itself. When we stay with that awareness, we don't have that reactive feeling about it; we're just doing it." (from Nothing Special, pp. 115-17)
It sounds to me like the purpose of life is simply to be alive. What a lovely tautology!
To be alive is to be aware. To be aware is to identify our reactivity to the sharp rocks on our path. Identifying reactivity enables us to pull the plug on that sucker and stop being deluded by it, time after time. This is our practice, transforming rocks into diamonds.
What sharp rock is on your road today?
for Mindful Monday
© December 1, 2014, post: Donna Pierce
Photo credit: "Ancient River Gravels," Jocelyn Kinghorn, 2014.
#mindful #monday #findingGod