Monday, April 30, 2007

being re-planted...

On a more positive note…things changed today. – I re-planted a plant in a bigger pot…and as I took the plant out of the old small pot…I saw all the roots so tightly woven together…wanting to branch out but with not enough space to do so. Re-planting it felt like I was being re-planted – giving myself more space to breath and stretch and it felt such a relief. Today was a relief. – I had time to do the things that were pending…Connected with being busy – this week was not the greatest…Things happened and internally I held onto the conversations, the reactions and most of the all the feelings. I’m aware that I rush in my mind…jumping from one thing to the next – and today my mind stopped. My day started with meditation and a class at a meditation centre. I got home at noon and did cleaning, then I went for a walk I Hyde park, then I went to do some grocery shopping, then I re-planted the plant in the new pot that I had bought and filled it with new compost. Next I made banana muffins and prepared the ingredients to make bread tomorrow, then I made dinner, then I sat for meditation in the evening…plus throughout the day I did three loads of laundry. At 8pm my flatmate came back with and had brought a beautiful plant with her which she’s just now planting into a pot that we have on the balcony…She just said: it’s amazing timing that you bought compost today…By the way I’m the last person to look after plants – they tend to die on me unfortunately…but I’m determined for a bit of change. I have to be honest and say that tonight was the first time in a long time that I sat and my mind was quiet…restful and it is still restful. In my evening meditation the thought came: why am I here?…Is it to run around working for ordinary things or am I here to offer something of some value?…Just recently I attended a talk and the speaker shared…that to serve is to give peace and happiness. This is what I want to do…this is how I want to live…this is what I want to create inside. Well, it’s Sunday and it’s easy to think in this way – my aim this week is to carry it through – to work on another level…a level of love.

Is anyone too busy?

Is anyone too busy?….I’ve been thinking…Why am I always rushing against time?…I heard sometime ago that being busy is a sign of laziness…and this somehow rings true for me, but knowing this hasn’t inspired me to change the busy syndrome…One thing is for sure that although life may feel busy, I can say that I do enjoy it…Still I do sometimes wish that I had more time on my hands to do what I want/need to do. Recently even blogging became too much…I didn’t have the time and yes life was busy, but I think there is something in developing the art of doing more in less time. Do I waste time?…Well, probably at times – well, I think others reading this will have a chuckle, my 5mins are usually 15-20mins if you’re lucky. If I’m working on the computer trying to finish a design or write up a report my 5mins can easily turn into an hour…On the other hand if there is a deadline I can usually meet it. I remember once when I was in art school and we had assignments that were due, someone told me (at the time I didn’t understand what he was talking about) that I have a very good sense of timing (no laughing if anyone is reading this that knows meJ). I do tend to manage everything in time, but just on time…and do I feel stressed? do I feel stretched?…Well, yes…I am not exactly displaying self mastery at these times…Sometimes it means I stay up late just to get the work done on time…and most of all I tend to drag everyone else into the late nights…My flatmate recently jokingly said in passing: remind me never to work with you…So what is it that I need to change?…Do I want to change?... This is the real key question? I have to say I quite like my process of working…I enjoy the feeling of having pushed myself…and the sense of achievement it gives – Is this good from a spiritual perspective? Probably not…Today I had the thought that… this week I’m going to do another kind of work and that is to take more time in the evening to meditate…so that my clarity of thinking develops and my intellect becomes sharper…As only then do I think I will really be able to save time and use time in a worthwhile way…It is also easy for me to take this time right now as I don’t have any pressing deadlines…At least I should take this opportunity to build a reserve inside so that when I am faced with deadlines it might be possible to tap into an alternate way of working. Let’s see. Thanks for listening!

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

The mouse story

A mouse looked through the crack in the wall to see the farmer and his wife open a package.

"What food might this contain?" The mouse wondered - he was devastated to discover it was a mousetrap.

Retreating to the farmyard, the mouse proclaimed the warning.

"There is a mousetrap in the house! There is a mousetrap in the house!"

The chicken clucked and scratched, raised her head and said, "Mr. Mouse, I can tell this is a grave concern to you but it is of no consequence to me. I cannot be bothered by it."

The mouse turned to the pig and told him, "There is a mousetrap in the house! There is a mousetrap in the house!"

The pig sympathized, but said, "I am so very sorry, Mr. Mouse, but there is nothing I can do about it but pray. Be assured you are in my prayers."

The mouse turned to the cow and said, "There is a mousetrap in the house! There is a mousetrap in the house!"

The cow said, "Wow, Mr. Mouse. I'm sorry for you, but it's no skin off my nose."

So, the mouse returned to the house, head down and dejected, to face the farmer's mousetrap -- alone.

That very night a sound was heard throughout the house -- like the sound of a mousetrap catching its prey.

The farmer's wife rushed to see what was caught. In the darkness, she did not see it was a venomous snake whose tail the trap had caught.

The snake bit the farmer's wife. The farmer rushed her to the hospital and she returned home with a fever. Everyone knows you treat a fever with fresh chicken soup, so the farmer took his hatchet to the farmyard for the soup's main ingredient.

But his wife's sickness continued, so friends and neighbors came to sit with her around the clock. To feed them, the farmer butchered the pig.

The farmer's wife did not get well; she died. So many people came for her funeral, the farmer had the cow slaughtered to provide enough meat for all of them.

The mouse looked upon it all from his crack in the wall with great sadness.

Moral of the story: So, the next time you hear someone is facing a problem and think it doesn't concern you, remember -- when one of us is threatened, we are all at risk. We are all involved in this journey called life. We must keep an eye out for one another and make an extra effort to encourage one another.

*extract from en email sent by to me by a good friend...

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Just be me

I've just returned from a trip I made to India for some quiet moments of reflection and meditation. I always find India such a unique place for solitude, despite the mayhem and chaos which the country offers. Everytime I visit India it is as though it is my first visit and each time I find myself fascinated by the culture, religion, people, noise, language and lifestyle.

I grew up in the East with a mixture of both Eastern and Western values (influences of upbringing, culture, family, TV/Media and colonialism). When I was a kid I used to reject the Eastern values I was taught preferring to be more 'Western' - I would prefer to speak and read in English rather than my own native tongue; to watch Hollywood movies and American / English sitcoms and to listen to music by American / English artists on my walkman. Never once did I ask myself - what's wrong with being me?

However after embarking on this journey of spirituality I have come to accept whatever I'm 'made of' - be it externally or internally. The day I stopped resisting was the day I started being who I am meant to be. I begun to like myself more and see my own potential instead of trying to be someone I'm clearly was not. Otherwise I am not only living in someone else's shadow but I also lose my own integrity and pride by doing so.

So, this time in India, I came to understand that I should stop using my head and start letting things be as they are and as they should be. Destiny has greater plans and 'I' should not get in her way.