Three Jewels (Part 1 of 3)

Happy November to you and yours. For me this month signals a call to notice my inner world, an entrance to holiday season, and a time to reflect and wind down the year. 

I like to slow down and read more these days so I had an idea about writing a story to you in three parts, not too long and hopefully one that you’ll be inspired by.

I’ll be using the container of the three jewels of Buddhism which is Buddha (teacher), Dharma (teachings) and Sangha (community). 

Let’s begin with the idea that we can learn or aspire to make peace with uncertainty.

Maybe even fall in love with it. 

Why should we think about this?

Because deep down we’re seeking a big yes to our own life. We’d love to feel like we belong to our life no matter what the condition of it is. For love, for joy, for peace and for no more struggle. We crave this way of being. 

We’re almost always struggling against our current reality. Even if we have a really good life, we tend to have that nagging itch of discontent. Sometimes that works well as a way to motivate us to do something creative or needed, but often it’s a way of blocking our ability to just be, and sit down and appreciate what our life contains. 

We say I don’t want to be here, I want to be over there and thus we’re never really present. 

So how can we say yes to our life right now, no matter how it is?

Even if it contains deep sadness, fear, anger or longing. 

We start by not making the above things our enemy. 

Let’s instead consider them a form of supreme intelligence. In reality you may have been told that strong feelings and emotions based on the uncertainties of life are a big problem. And that you have to solve the problem in order to be happy. That your strongest feelings need to be fixed. 

So we have this collective way of thinking that positive thoughts are healthy and normal-negative thoughts are bad and must go away quickly. 

At some point this all sort of collapses because it doesn’t align with our true essence, and we inherently know this. 

Does the ocean say?  “Ok only half of my waves are allowed.”

So we can see how this back and forth is so exhausting and may of us get depressed with the struggle and the search. 

And maybe if we’re lucky we start to feel disillusioned by the promises of the world, and this is actually a really good sign.

Because this is the beginning of great intelligence. It’s the ending of illusion and that means we can get over some things that block our joy. Like believing that once we get over there and get the love, the success, the money, the right people, the right body, then it will all be ok. We’re depending on those things before we can be happy. 

What we’re really longing for is the embrace of where we actually are right now. 

We long to be here and connected and to taste life again. 

To get out of our busy mind and into presence and peace. 

I continue to love holding space for people on retreats. I’ve learned so much about myself, the world we live in and how we’re more similar than different-we’re all deeply connected. 

When I spend time with people on retreat what I witness time and again is that everyone wants to rest their weary mind,  to accept where they are, to appreciate life without so many rules and soften their hearts. 

It starts very simply. 

Noticing.  We notice our tendencies. Notice how we’re breathing, where our mind escapes to, what strong emotions we’re feeling. 

Then we keep noticing and try not to judge. Let all of the waves be there. Let all of ourself be seen and present. 

Let me know how this goes for you. 

Until the next. 

Much love,