Below is the video I made of the talk Josh gave that night. I have titled the talk the Implications of Spiritual Practice and Relationships. Josh deftly combines poignant cultural observations, challenges of following a spiritual path and quotes from the Buddha. Plus he has a good sense of humor. Enjoy!
p.s. Keep an eye out because next week, Josh will make his debut as a whatmeditationreallyis.com blogger.
This post was sent into us from Becky who has an interesting blog about sharing Meditation and Dharma with Children. Enjoy the post!
When you think about caring for another, and about arriving fully present at the bedside, what comes to mind? Does the idea of compassion in caring mean that we have to sacrifice some part of ourselves, or somehow “become” something we’re not in order to arrive present? Is there something that we lack that needs to be gained in order to be compassionate?
I set my alarm for 7am hoping that'll give me a good 1/2 hour to practice before work. But I don't roll out of bed till 8:45, and barely have time to get dressed before running out the door. I resolve once again to "catch up" on my meditation tonight.
I attempt to bring presence to my speed-walk to the subway, which works until I descend into the hot windy tunnel to catch the F train. The homeless guy slumped over a bench stares at me and I try to meet his gaze, because I don't want to pretend he doesn't exist. I hope my look conveys empathy but it probably just looks like a bitchy New Yorker glare.
To tune out my thoughts I pull out my ipod and turn on Pema Chodron's audio collection as I squeeze into the train. By the time I’ve actually untangled my headphone wires we're at 14th street and pouring out onto the New York city sidewalks. I merge in with the pedestrian traffic and walk to my building. Pema is finally playing and I feel a greater sense of presence as I walk.
It occurred to me it might be fun to describe how meditation plays into the life of us bloggers, who have been trying to "live meditation" for a number of years. So let me describe a typical day.
When we think about meditation, it's easy to think about sitting on a cushion, or in nature and working with our mind, working with our practice. And, to some extent, that's what we need to do when we formally practice. It's through our formal practice that we gain the stability to practice every day, to integrate what we've learned into how we are and who we are in our lives.
Meditation without action can simply become another way to check out, to absolve oneself of one's responsibilities within the world, leaving us "blissed out" with no particular orbit within the "reality" that is our lives.
As a Registered Nurse, working at the bedside, I’ve found countless opportunities to check-in using my meditation practice, instead of disappearing. Sogyal Rinpoche, as well as other teachers, refer to this checking-in as “integration.”
In July, I asked Dzigar Kongtrul Rinpoche to share a few words with our WhatMeditationReallyIs.com community. The following seven minute video is what he said.
Yesterday I heard a teaching by Tsoknyi Rinpoche, who taught about the speed and agression of the modern world. Although I have heard these kinds of teachings before, they always really hit me. Maybe because I am particularly prone to this hurried syndrome, being a pretty ambitious person in a competitive world...