Monday, November 3, 2014

Adventures of an Unquiet Mind, by Mara

Shang Longrik Gyatso Rinpoche
Mara, South Africa
I am an eternal daydreamer and have always spent much too much of my time lost in the land of wondering. I live out entire fantasies and complete entire stories spurred from minuscule chance encounters.

Imagine what a relationship with that person would be like? Imagine what a job in that field would be like? Wow! A picture of a beautiful beach! I definitely want to go there – imagine how fulfilling it would be? It seems like my mind is always ready to shoot off and follow the next unrealistic dream that crosses its path.

While contemplating such a dream a few days ago, I realized how my attachment to this dreamed-up outcome was surprisingly strong. I felt a deep wish for things to go as I hoped and for the conclusion to be as I dreamed. I realized that if it didn’t (which it likely wouldn’t) I would actually feel sad. I find it interesting how this sadness would be based on nothing but my own imagination. Nothing had developed. Nothing could be lost. Nothing was rooted in any tangibility. My yearnings and my thinking had led me to a place where I was bound to feel disappointed.

Rinpoche reminds us of this time and time again. He tells us to watch the mind. He told me once that to watch the mind means that you see what you see but leave it at that and don’t turn it into a narrative. How much unnecessary sadness and wasted time could be saved through following this advice? It would mean a life rooted in the now. Based in the present and focused on the moment. Nurturing ones potential instead of losing oneself to one’s desires. Rinpoche gives us time, wisdom, methods and teaches us how to do this. For which I am so deeply grateful.

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