Bumble Bees, Forsythia, and Thich Nhat Hanh

Returning from yoga class two weeks ago, a first bumble bee of the season buzzed before me, and around the flowers in the front garden. I saw another bee this week. When I see these amazing creatures I feel hopeful and happy since scientists indicate that the bee population is dwindling due to various kinds of pollution. Forsythia, one of my favorite sightings, bloomed seemingly overnight, to intoxicate me into spring. Forsythia sprout yellow flowers which are quickly replaced by green ones. So short lived is the burst of yellow that we must enjoy it while we can. John Paul Sartre philosophized that we get meaning from life because it is finite (death occurs). I would say that life in the physical form doesn’t last forever (it’s our spirit that is eternal). Relationships are like that too. There are so many opportunities to move a relationship forward by confronting an issue. We don’t know how long people will be in our lives. Appreciate them. Lean into the important connections, being genuine and present. We are truly alive when we remain present. A spiritual saying is that all things are possible at all times. It is wise to be awake (not in the past nor in the future with our thoughts) for these possibilities. Thich Nhat Hanh suggests that when thinking occurs in meditation, send the thoughts away, coming back to center. I spoke to a friend about the youthfulness of this Buddhist master who is in his eighties but looks sixty or so. “He has happy thoughts,” I said. My friend replied: “How about no thoughts.” There is clearly a boost to our physical, emotional and spiritual health when we are present. In my mind, our center is located in the heart up to the Higher Self, also known as the I AM Presence. This route takes us to the higher dimensional aspects of ourselves which hold our highest wisdom. We are electromagnetic, and we get an electromagnetic boost when we say I AM. I feel the flow of energy when reciting this mantra: I AM loved, I AM calm, etc. We can use it on its own or add a constructive phrase or word. Being in my center, in the moment, in compassion is my goal. In compassion I am in the now, detached from outcome, and centered in my unified self (Gregg Braden, 1997). It is no easy task for me. I make decisions as I go about my day whether to act with love or its opposite, anger, disrespect, etc. Life is to be cherished. It is finite like the bee and the yellow burst of the forsythia. In Eastern philosophy, each in-breath represents new life (inspiration) while the out-breath represents death. Why not enjoy the process? We must ‘think’ to be competent in our work and social interactions. Yet, we can be present as we move through these commitments. Of course, we need to function daily in our work and other activities where we think; but we are more than our thinking. There is other time to focus on our spiritual self. Call it a discipline. I love being in the moment. It feels light and easy. There is no past or future, just the experience of now. Being present represents a small part of my day but I am working to increase it. It greatly benefits my health, and I remind myself that a present is a gift. Linda

#yoga #flowers #sartre #relationships #thichnhathanh #buddhism

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Linda Marsanico

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