Today life seems evermore a rushing river. You start days in a rush to get a mornings work in before the hunger and the lull of siesta calls. Our days end with ever louder traffic. Unbeknownst to us, they raise the speed limit and our quiet corner of the world is gone. Rush hour keeps us from hearing our neighbors only a yard away.
Its critical to restore balance
A zen garden is one that creates a space to replenish our emotional reserves and pull ourselves back to a state of calm. Buddhism trains your brain to be able to find calm in any element. Since I am not a practitioner of any dedication, I need a space that can slow my thoughts in my own way. I can close my eyes and sink into meditation or perhaps just a cold cider.
When you ask what zen is about – My autofill say its about you, life, love and god. And that can’t be bad when you make sure to understand:
Zen is only to improve you in your world.
Zen gives you a guide to life and how it will improve you in your world.
Zen teaches you love and how through love you improve you in your world.
And finally zen is about god. The god you find in you when you improve you AND your world.
The happiest people feel safe, are well fed, and healthy. If your every thought could produce one of these three for yourself, your community including the nature around you, there would be little in the world we’d want for.
Our world echos too often in an overabundance of yang. And not the positive life producing yang. But the jarring negative news, the noise and air pollution clogging our senses. All thanks to the innoucuous sounding word…. development. We are expanding the highway for the rich to buy their way out of traffic. This will alleviate traffic. Its part of our urban planning. Its progress. That is the most oxymoronic of them all.
And what bothers me most is the noise. The internal and external noise. It makes up much of my daily life.
So I begin by improving myself.
I’m reducing the noise pollution I produce. Letting go is a big part of minimizing your potential for negative noise. Acknowledging the experience or emotion as it happens, does not allow your brain to lump it with other irritations.
At home I used to find it easy to grow a web of negative noise. Where every perceived slight founds its way to that big soul crushing story you’ve fed yourself over time.
No matter the words at hand, the brain decides its part of that big ugly. So you stuff it and hope that the unacknowledged feeling won’t rear up. Becuase heck you’ve been around and around this.
Yet if acknowledged right then, many alternatives to the big ugly theme are opened up. It requires you take the time to acknowledge whatever feeling is as separate entity. A good example is the other day I asked the hubby to pick up hair product for me. And yes product is an individual thing. I sent a pic – and went about my day. Checking my phone after a tiem I see Mike had texted me with a question, to which I responded. When he got home, he said he didn’t buy the alternative. And I was disappointed. But acknowledging that yup that kinda sucks, but hey what a nice gesture it was to look for me. That didn’t work out, well so what? In the old days – this would have been an irritation, one that could be lumped along other unacknowledged irritations. Today a slight disappointment morphed into ensuring recognition of his effort and thanking him for it. Its small but noticeable.
If I keep business to business – there is less emotional noise at work, especially the negative noise. The facts are plenty, and jokes are fun. There is no need in having Festivus for the rest of us every week.
I had to learn that a bit late – and drove away some talented folks. I’m in no way over the hill, but I’m more mindful and this is the work of zen.
More definitions of zen: