OBC Connect

A site for those with an interest in the Order of Buddhist Contemplatives, past or present, and related subjects.
 
HomeHome  CalendarCalendar  GalleryGallery  FAQFAQ  SearchSearch  RegisterRegister  Log in  

Share | 
 

 Whatever has helped me be more awake, loving or free today?

View previous topic View next topic Go down 
AuthorMessage
Howard

avatar

Posts : 554
Join date : 2010-06-27
Age : 62
Location : Vancouver

PostSubject: Whatever has helped me be more awake, loving or free today?   Sat Jan 22, 2011 12:31 am

The OBC connect has been helping me examine a multitude of the stories, conditioning's & ideas within my own practise.

The OBC Sangha was a part of my foundation practise, a never ending soap opera and the adoption of a life load of conditioning. Leaving the OBC freed me from a huge weight of spiritual compromises and propelled me for years into a largely solitary practise which while joyful was self serving probably to the point of being stultifying.

Contact with the OBC connect has reminded me of how helpful interacting with Sangha can be for facing the things that I might otherwise avoid. The OBC connect also seems like a non aligned spiritual think tank which looks like a bit of a middle path between the OBC machine and a solo practise.

I wondered if other forum visitors might be interested in sharing here for discussion whatever discoveries in their own practise that they've found today.
Back to top Go down
http://hrmitchell54@yahoo.com
Lise
Admin
avatar

Posts : 1412
Join date : 2009-11-08
Age : 43

PostSubject: Re: Whatever has helped me be more awake, loving or free today?   Sat Jan 22, 2011 1:56 am

ok, this is synchronicity -- bless you, Howard, for starting this topic.

I had a moment in my day today (not a discovery, it's too mundane, but I'll share it), when I felt really connected to the idea that we aren't separate from other people. It was an extra-special traffic moment that all commuters experience, when too many people are competing for limited lanes and opportunities to get in. And you sit there, wondering when you'll get to shift over, otherwise maybe have to take an exit you don't want, etc. Then I made eye contact with a lady who was letting me merge, and I waved and she smiled, and I let somebody else in who was running out of lane options, and kept doing the same all the way to work. No it's not profound, but it was such a cool start to my day. I thought, we're trying to look after each other, in small ways. It's a nice feeling -- like you're in a room with all these people and you're all smiling about the same thing Smile

What else about my practise today -- I really didn't hold back with the jubilation (internal) on getting a cool work assignment. I don't regard all of them the same, maybe as a good buddhist would. Can't help it. I really appreciate and enjoy the good moments in the workday, and feel as if I should express gratitude for their passing my way.

Really like this topic -- I'll be back --
Back to top Go down
http://obcconnect.forumotion.net
Lise
Admin
avatar

Posts : 1412
Join date : 2009-11-08
Age : 43

PostSubject: Re: Whatever has helped me be more awake, loving or free today?   Sat Jan 22, 2011 12:18 pm

Things that help me be more awake: spending the time to watch the brightness of stars before the sun comes up. There's something about the peace of the night sky, and watching the light steal into it by degrees. Beautiful world we live in Smile
Back to top Go down
http://obcconnect.forumotion.net
Howard

avatar

Posts : 554
Join date : 2010-06-27
Age : 62
Location : Vancouver

PostSubject: Re: Whatever has helped me be more awake, loving or free today?   Sat Jan 22, 2011 2:49 pm

Hey Lise


Sychonicity was also me driving my zendo (plumbers cargo van), meeting another driver on a merge lane onto the freeway who didn't want to merge, going from calm to aggressive in a split second of thwarted entitlement, seeing him gesticulating in the rear view mirror as I dangerously forced the issue and instantly realizing what an ugly wake I was trailing behind. My years of meditative effort became reduced to trying to spend the rest of my day being a be a bit more generous with the space I was occupying (on & off the road).


Nothing humbles my meditative accomplishments like driving. It's the perfect corollary for the human condition. My ego looks like my truck on the road, representing the shell of my being, a barrier that separates me from the rest of the world, and oh how isolated & poorly behaved I can be behind this barrier.

I try to address it by approaching my vehicle as my meditation hut. All I need to do in it is drive. Full attention gets to be placed on being just right where I am. My job requires my return to it numerous times during the day so it tends to becomes a reminder to be open, loving and present.
BUT
Like anyone who drives a lot, it is easy to become complacent about what one does all the time. Little scares on the road are often what wakes me up from getting complacent in my shell. Yesterday, a scary me re-opened the door to my moving meditation...again.. .


Cheers
Back to top Go down
http://hrmitchell54@yahoo.com
Lise
Admin
avatar

Posts : 1412
Join date : 2009-11-08
Age : 43

PostSubject: Re: Whatever has helped me be more awake, loving or free today?   Mon Jan 24, 2011 11:53 pm

Couldn't agree more, esp. about little scares on the road waking us up. They do that all right Shocked

I have been so tickled by your question about things that help us to be more awake, loving or free. I have turned that into a lens for looking at my day. When the horses snuffle and nuzzle me in the morning, that's love and I soak it up. When I'm home in my sunny kitchen, cooking on a Sunday morning instead of sitting in the church I went to years ago (unwillingly), I'm free . . . having choice over one's own life and spirituality is amazing. I had no hope of that as a child -- didn't know it was possible. Maybe that's why I appreciate it so much now Smile
Back to top Go down
http://obcconnect.forumotion.net
Howard

avatar

Posts : 554
Join date : 2010-06-27
Age : 62
Location : Vancouver

PostSubject: Re: Whatever has helped me be more awake, loving or free today?   Tue Jan 25, 2011 3:15 am

I fix natural gas heating systems for a living. Today I had a bit of a run in with a wild customer with a broken furnace. She was erratic, foul mouthed, aggressive, hearing voices, acting unpredictably and showed no understanding of the most basic normal social graces. The stories she shouted at me seemed to all be about peoples reactions to her behaviour. She was scary enough for a 200lb. 6'1" guy to conciously keep my tools out of her reach and to not turn my back on her for any reason.

Halfway through my repairs, in the midst of the chaotic rantings, I suddenly realized something was missing in the room. It was me. I had retreated from her bizarre behaviour into my repair job.

I deliberately put down my tools and faced this very agitated person. I looked at her, sat down on my tool box and just listened to her stories. This is all she wanted. Within a few minutes she had completely settled down and just talked about her separation from public opinion, from personal control, from love, from god, and from the repair man in her basement.

When she finally said her piece, everything was very, very still in the room and she smiled. I finished the repair, waved goodbye to yet another buddha and watched as that beautiful stillness seemed to preseed me throughout the rest of the day.
It was a good day to see that smile.
Back to top Go down
http://hrmitchell54@yahoo.com
Andi

avatar

Posts : 12
Join date : 2010-08-04
Age : 52
Location : Cheshire, UK

PostSubject: Re: Whatever has helped me be more awake, loving or free today?   Tue Jan 25, 2011 9:18 am

The Wendy Test.

Most people who know me, know of the 'Wendy Test.'
(Wendy is my wife and friend, we married 25 years ago, when Wend was 19! )

The Wendy Test is a reality check on practice, on how I live. It is tested in moments where there is no time to gather yourself, no time to put on some serene face.

So, am I genuinely Charitable, Tender, Benevolent and Sympathetic with Wendy, even in the heat of the moment?

Am I genuinely Charitable, Tender, Benevolent and Sympathetic to the driver of the white BMW who cuts in front of me on the freeway - at the time that he cuts in front of me!!

These places are where the Wendy test is a good barometer for me - in the split-second-no-room-for-pretend moments.
This test applies to myself, loved ones, work colleagues, animals etc.

Can I say 'may you be well, may you find happiness' authentically?

It is not the Wendy Test that keeps me in check. It's the other way round - on my death bed (if I am fortunate enough to have one), it won't be how many times I have read the Shobogenzo, or what grade did I get - but was I genuinely OK?

Intellect is great. Buddhist sects and orders are great. Dogen is the Bees Knees.
But is the practice thawing me out, is it increasing my peripheral vision.
Am I now more present for living?
Can I prove it?

This 'Test' has helped me, has been a touchstone.

Hope everyone's OK out there.

Andi
Back to top Go down
Lise
Admin
avatar

Posts : 1412
Join date : 2009-11-08
Age : 43

PostSubject: Re: Whatever has helped me be more awake, loving or free today?   Tue Jan 25, 2011 1:25 pm

Howard wrote:

I suddenly realized something was missing in the room. It was me.

Andi wrote:

... on my death bed (if I am fortunate enough to have one), it won't be how many times I have read the Shobogenzo, or what grade did I get - but was I genuinely OK?

Two very good prompts (all of the above was good) for being awake. thanks guys -
Back to top Go down
http://obcconnect.forumotion.net
glorfindel

avatar

Posts : 226
Join date : 2010-07-12

PostSubject: Re: Whatever has helped me be more awake, loving or free today?   Tue Jan 25, 2011 6:35 pm

At least once a day I chant along to this highly acclaimed sutra:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ogQ0uge06o
Back to top Go down
Howard

avatar

Posts : 554
Join date : 2010-06-27
Age : 62
Location : Vancouver

PostSubject: Re: Whatever has helped me be more awake, loving or free today?   Wed Jan 26, 2011 7:46 pm

Hello Andi

I like your approach with the " death bed " Wendy test.

I think every zafu pilot has some version of this.

My personal test gauge for where I am spiritually and where I should consider going has been asking myself... "if this is my last minute, hour or day of breath, what is important?

It challenges my ego / identity / conditioning / habits & complacency. It helps points out the what, when, where & why of the soap opera in my life. Mostly it helps me to relax and let go of stuff that never really belonged to me.

The most important aspect of this test for me is "When" do I ask myself this question" for what it really shows is all the times that I don't ask it.

I wonder if that is the value of following ones breath. I have always thought of it as a concentration exercise as opposed to meditation but perhaps on a deeper level it is the continuous asking of that very question.

And they say Zen folks don't know how to have a good time!

Cheers
Back to top Go down
http://hrmitchell54@yahoo.com
breljo

avatar

Posts : 217
Join date : 2010-12-03

PostSubject: Re: Whatever has helped me be more awake, loving or free today?   Fri Jan 28, 2011 12:12 am

I keep getting a chuckle out of glorfindels avatar image and wonder if it wouldn't be a good idea whenever those guys come back from where they're headed to enroll them in Chisans heretofore mentioned "Cornish anger management class".

Brigitte
Back to top Go down
Howard

avatar

Posts : 554
Join date : 2010-06-27
Age : 62
Location : Vancouver

PostSubject: Re: Whatever has helped me be more awake, loving or free today?   Fri Jan 28, 2011 12:59 am

Hey Glorfindel
Allow me a little wander over to the dark side.

Anyone wondering why Glorfindel posts an avatar hunting scene needs only to sit through the entire performance of his favourite sutra to realize how tempting it would be to find that bear. Now imagine what it would be like if you listened to that song every single day!

Thanks Glorfindel for the echo of a song that never seems to end.
Back to top Go down
http://hrmitchell54@yahoo.com
Henry

avatar

Posts : 398
Join date : 2010-08-28
Location : Palm Beach Gardens, FL

PostSubject: Re: Whatever has helped me be more awake, loving or free today?   Fri Jan 28, 2011 9:55 am

Glorfindel,
I need to make sure my wife doesn't hear your sutra. I have a terrible feeling she might not stop chanting it.
Back to top Go down
breljo

avatar

Posts : 217
Join date : 2010-12-03

PostSubject: Re: Whatever has helped me be more awake, loving or free today?   Fri Jan 28, 2011 6:54 pm

unbearable, just unbearable the thought.
Back to top Go down
glorfindel

avatar

Posts : 226
Join date : 2010-07-12

PostSubject: Re: Whatever has helped me be more awake, loving or free today?   Fri Jan 28, 2011 11:15 pm

Speaking of the unbearable nature of bare neccessities; I'd say around here people have found bareness quite bearable:

Consider my avatar. All the action seems to be at the top end of the hunters, but move your eyes down an inch. You have all born that bareness quite admirably.

I have posted willies on a Buddhist forum and got away with it for several months now.
Back to top Go down
breljo

avatar

Posts : 217
Join date : 2010-12-03

PostSubject: Re: Whatever has helped me be more awake, loving or free today?   Sat Jan 29, 2011 2:08 am

time for the ladies on the forum to avert their eyes and depart quickly then!!!!!!!

good night all
Back to top Go down
Lise
Admin
avatar

Posts : 1412
Join date : 2009-11-08
Age : 43

PostSubject: Re: Whatever has helped me be more awake, loving or free today?   Thu Feb 24, 2011 9:49 am

This one woke me up this morning:

Kozan wrote:
The more failure we create, the more vigorously we act on
the misunderstanding that creates failure in the first place!

Complete post is in this thread:
http://obcconnect.forumotion.net/t180p50-could-the-obc-connect-use-some-balance

thanks Kozan.
Back to top Go down
http://obcconnect.forumotion.net
Sponsored content




PostSubject: Re: Whatever has helped me be more awake, loving or free today?   

Back to top Go down
 
Whatever has helped me be more awake, loving or free today?
View previous topic View next topic Back to top 
Page 1 of 1
 Similar topics
-
» Whatever has helped me be more awake, loving or free today?
» Asleep but not yet awake (huge spider)
» SCREAMED MYSELF AWAKE
» Loving your Spirit Guide?
» SCRIPTURES ON AWAKE [PART 2]

Permissions in this forum:You cannot reply to topics in this forum
OBC Connect :: OBC Connect :: In Theory and Practice-
Jump to: