Maybe not guru-like at all

As those of you following this blog probably know, my goal is to come up with meaningful, light-inspiring observations, ideally one per day (as if). But the days are short and full (if someone can tell me how to find the perfect balance between too little to do [I’m not producing, I’m not accomplishing anything, I’m BOOOOOOred!] and too much to do [I’m panicking I’m stressed

I would really appreciate it.)

(Wow. What a sidebar. Sorry.)

But here’s the thing.

I’m really tired of people treating people like crap and getting away with it. And the people who have been treated like crap (the crapee’s, if you will) are told to be all accepting and Zen and professional while the perpetrators (the crapper’s, if you will) just go around all la-di-da, acting all friendly and innocent and going about their business as if they have the right to do whatever the @#$ they want and we’re just supposed to deal with it.

The following will seem not really related, but go with me for a minute and we’ll see if we can find it together.

Someone wrote on a friend’s Facebook wall today this little gem:

“If our identity is in our work, rather than Christ, success will go to our heads, and failure will go to our hearts.”

I thought about commenting, but then decided not to. I guess it’s not really my place [on Facebook] to voice my disagreement(s) any more than it’s any one else’s place to try to convince me that this statement is true. (Although they posted it, they didn’t post it on my wall, etc., etc.) Although I will try here — it is my blog, after all.

Our identity IS our work. And our successes, and failures, should go to both our heads and to our hearts. If we treat other people badly, we SHOULD feel guilty about it. If we try and fail, we should regret it, so we can decide whether to try again, or to try something else. If we succeed, we should be grateful, and generous, and use those successes to fuel other successes, to help make the world a better place, help another person, share the wealth, share the joy, share share share.

Saying that God’s Will will get us the right job or bring us a baby or cure our disease or take our now-dead loved one to heaven might make us feel better, but don’t we all have to do something about that anyway/as well? Study hard, write the cover letters and the kick-ass resumé, learn how to network and interact with people and look them in the eye when we’re having a conversation; take care of our bodies, adopt a child if we can’t give birth to one, thank the doctors who take care of us and shun the ones who scorn us, learn to live without the one we loved who is no longer with us. We can’t really expect to sit on our couch, hands folded, and wait expectantly for any of these things to fall into our laps.

(My mom lay dying in a hospice bed, and people would come to visit and proclaim “God is good” because she had moved her left leg by herself that morning, and all I could think was “Really? Good because she’s suffered for five years with brain cancer and two breast cancers and a stroke which temporarily paralyzed her and she’s still dying, but we’ll thank God for this One Little Thing He Has Done For Her while ignoring all he hasn’t?”)

Whether you believe in God or not, you have an obligation to the people around you to look out for the “God” in each and every person; the Divine [Namaste]. And by that all I mean is this: we are all fighting hard battles, we are all tired and overworked and stretching our budgets and trying to get our kids good educations and good opportunities while teaching them self-reliance and responsibility and driving them to ballet and cooking meals they don’t like and tripping over their shoes in the hallway. I curse the potholes and the people who try to take my lane on the highway while I’m still in it, but every single time I have to drive into work at rush hour people in two lanes stop to let me turn left across traffic. Every. Single. Time.

Our identity, our success, our failure, they are ALL our work. And whether in life you do actually reap exactly what you sow, somehow you do — even if it only manifests itself as a shadow you throw onto your own soul; or a light. You choose.

Take care of each other. This might be all we have.



Oh, to remember

from Sarah, at Redamancy Lit.

“Pick a point, create a purpose, and move (ever slowly sometimes) towards it. Every day is the right day to reassess, make a map, rally the stakeholders to your own life, show up for someone else, and build capacity to be a better . . . human being. This is why love matters most. This is why you’re alive. This is why life is so painfully short and your sucky attitude is a waste of fine time.  Break down the barriers you’ve built between you and the love of that god, that man, that woman, that child, and that person inside yourself you bully. . .Stand tall, breathe deep, smile softly, and forgive yourself for all that shit you won’t let go. Now is the time to put it down because it’s stupid heavy and you have a light heart. . .Be magnanimous, even when they don’t deserve it. Because you don’t sometimes, either. We’re all recipients of everyday grace and fear of hell isn’t what gets you into heaven. “

She wrote it for New Years, as a resolution of sorts. I think if it’s worth resolving on January 1 of any year, it’s worth resolving every day. If only I could remember. I actually read something the other day, and of course, being me, can’t remember who wrote it, much like the above: You throw an anchor into the future you want for yourself, and then pull yourself along by the chain. It doesn’t mention anything about forgiving yourself for all the crap you’re leaving behind, but I guess that could be implied.

Guidance on self-love

My beloved child, break your heart no longer.

Each time you judge yourself, you break your own heart.

You stop feeding on the love which is the wellspring of your vitality.

The time has come, your time, to live, to celebrate, to see the goodness that you are. . .

. . .Let no one, no thing, no idea or ideal obstruct you.

If once comes, even in the name of “truth,” forgive it for its unknowing.

Do not fight the dark.

Let go, aware of the light.

And breathe into the goodness that you are.

~Bapuji Kripalu