An unexpected book arrived in the mail the other day. A gift from my friend’s at Wisdom Publications. Zen Master Raven: The Teachings of a Wise Old Bird. by Zen Master human form, Robert Aitken. Here the koans are told by and to animals of the forest: raven, porcupine, owl, woodpecker, badger, black bear, and […]
We are in the midst of another heat wave. It’s in the 90s and that is unusual for Northern Vermont. It’s dangerously hot and humid. It’s easy not to like this weather and because of this ready aversion the heat has much to teach us about living an awakened life.
The unpleasantness of the warmth illustrates how we push and pull against what is happening. The heat is just an obvious example of what is occurring in every single moment of our lives. If we can learn to be even-minded while we sweat in this swelter than we can learn to be even-minded in any of life’s circumstances.
Hot Buddha sweats (as I’ve mentioned before). As I write, sweat drips down my forehead as I breathe the stolid air. Without a storyline that complains, this heat does not have to be a problem. Of course, I must hydrate and take care to avoid heat exhaustion, but everything else is just preference. I prefer not to sweat, I prefer low humidity days, and so forth.
Can I give up my preferences, if just for a moment? Can you? This is an invitation to do so–to accept the conditions of now and not to engage in complaint. Give up all pre-conditions for happiness and dive into this moment.
If the heat is not where you are today, it will likely be soon. Whatever is not ideal in your life in this moment, see if you can apply a similar acceptance–set aside all the reasons why you can’t be happy and see what happens. You just might find yourself enjoying this moment.