Wake Up

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The Swing Keeps Moving

Photo by Ben on Flickr

Photo by Ben on Flickr

»This world is a playground,« she said. »The swing keeps moving, although nobody is there to push it. Enjoy yourself, even when you’re not; there’s always stillness in the center. Just remember who these dangling feet belong to, that is all.«

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Heart Sutra

Heart-shaped cloud
‘Miss, I believe you dropped something!’

She looks down and sees it lying there on the floor, behind her. A worn, folded piece of paper with something scribbled on it. She knows even as she starts to read it that these words could very well have been written by herself. She goes back to the beginning and reads it again. Then she reads it again and again, after which she absentmindedly passes the security check, still holding the note, sits down on a bench in the departure lounge, places it neatly in her lap and reads it again: ‘A Peace Treaty with Myself,’ it begins, ‘Aware of the suffering caused by judgments of myself and others, I aspire to pay closer attention to judging thoughts, to release them, and to contemplate how life would be without them. I allow this simple act to continue unfolding in unexpected ways.’

This is where it all began.

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I am Dharma

Be YouWaking up, she finds herself splayed like a starfish across the narrow bed, her mind vaguely entangled with a slowly vanishing dream. Its details are already faded and distant, but its presence still surprisingly tangible. A fragmented dream sequence resurfaces, adding to the sense of boundaries being erased. She watches herself signing a legal document… dark, shiny pen resting heavily in her hand… a whiff of fresh printer ink… and on the dotted line – in smooth and curvy handwriting – her name. Dharma. She intuitively knows that everything is all right, just as it is meant to be. Suddenly overwhelmed by a deep sense of gratitude and tranquility, silent tears start pouring from the depths of her heart.

How long has it been now, since that night? Probably six years or more. She remembers being confused by that dream for a long time. Her mind tried so hard to grasp its meaning, to understand why she had been so intimately moved by it. Looking up the word dharma online, she had soon found out that it was a term often used in Buddhist and Hindu philosophy. The descriptions of its meaning seemed infinite; the underlying nature and essence of all mental and physical phenomena, the core teachings of the Buddha, the ultimate truth, spiritual duties and the true spiritual destiny, karma and the sweetness of sugar… Despite juggling all those awe-inspiring words, she still hadn’t been able to figure out how all this related to her.

Looking back today, she recognises that she had indeed gotten the message from the very beginning. After all, it was never intended for her mind.

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That’s Life

IT IS … UNFAIR.
“That’s life, master.”
BUT I’M NOT.
“I meant this is how it’s supposed to go, master,” said Albert.
NO. YOU MEAN THIS IS HOW IT GOES.

– Terry Pratchett, Hogfather