Sunday, January 4, 2009

100 Days of Dharma

In September walking along a blue skyed beach, watching grey whales spout the idea popped into my head that I should write 100 days of Dharma.... (did the spouting of the whales make me think of my own spouting off?? eek)  My plan was I should find time everyday to write something that pertained to the Dharma, some aspect that was up on my radar or that I had been working with in daily life. The 100 days came from a qi gong class I was taking where this amazing qi gong master suggested that 100 days was what it took to really get acquainted with something, to experience it at a deeper level.  

I started out with great enthusiasm on day 1 and then as the days passed I seem to get busy with other things, things like watering the garden, having breakfast.  You know the things that make up a day.... and I would find myself writing later and later in the day until one day I just didn't write.  The next day I posited that it could still be 100 days of Dharma but not necessarily consecutive.  The mind is a slippery creature!  And so I carried on...thinking it better to write than not to. But then I got a cold and that was my excuse, so after a couple of weeks the 100 days of Dharma fell into a place that so many good intentions do, that dark closet of good ideas and projects and plans collecting metaphorical dust, piled up next to the heap of forgotten dreams and abandoned aspirations.

But here it is peeking its head out of the closet, the 100 days of Dharma, timidly I admit, but hopeful in a way you might expect from the Dharma....patient and kind, slightly bemused at this silly human.  When I started writing this blog it was mainly as a vehicle to promote my Etsy site (gasp!)  I had read this was a good thing to do and that lots of Etsians (not related to Martians) did this.  But after a day or two of writing I remembered how much I love to write... and being a simple sort I like the idea of one pot dinners so why not combine all my passions: art, Dharma and writing.  If I committed in some public kind of way maybe I would actually do the 100 days.  Does fear of public shaming count as discipline?   When my Zen teacher talks about discipline she talks about "grasping the will."  So here it is the first of 100 days.  It is about lots of things, discipline, about building new habits, its about refining the art of whatever by repetition (Malcom Gladwell whose books I love, says in his latest book called "Outliers" that it takes 10,000 hours of practice to really master something).  And ultimately it's just about the doing, the mystery of starting something and finding out where it takes you, the following of your bliss as Joseph Campbell referred to it.  So what forgotten project is peeking its hopeful little head out of your closet hoping for 100 days of attention???    

1 comment:

  1. I just found your site and look forward to reading your 100 days of dharma (hopefully I can figure out a way to do it easily/smoothly! LOL); although you have already completed this process, for me it will be fresh and 'now.' Bright Blessings!