Monday, May 10, 2010

What the Heart Longs For

I am living in a place that requires no window coverings. There is no one to see in and plenty for me to see out. At night when I turn out all the lights the indigo sky is awash with stars. If I happen to wake up in the night the moon might be shining in the window like an oversized street light or a barge lit up like a cruise ship might startle my half awake self.

And if the day is clear and bright I might wake at 5:30 to a magical orange glow over the islands held in a brilliant blue sky. If the day starts overcast like today, I might not wake until 7 to find a white, grey sky so quiet and peaceful not even the birds think to disturb the silence.

In this place I live as if I am just another one of earth's creatures. My life revolves around the weather and the rising and setting of the sun. On a sunny day I notice the vibrant energy that tugs me from my bed. An overcast day is a quieter affair, more given to silence and sitting than bounding energy. A sunny day means laundry and garden watering. A rainy day or sunset is a good time to bury myself in a book or paint.

I am finding it hard to stay in the house during the day. Something in me is starved to be outside, greedily gulping in fresh air and spring greenery at every chance. I am following this craving. Today I dragged two folding chairs out to the meadow by the garden. Then I rounded up a bale of hay for a table and presto a perfect lunch spot. I am plotting perfect evening dinners in the meadow. Imagine guests surprise to find a bale of hay table laid with dinner and tealights. I need to find a checkered table cloth. Here's the beginning of a story line!

What does all this have to do with the Dharma? I think it is about living in the flow of life, doing what your heart is longing for. I think that simplifying life allows us to see what our heart longs for. Or is it that our heart longs for a simpler life? Simplifying life allows us to feel what makes us sad and see what makes our heart soar. We can't separate the two, our sad and happy parts. They come wrapped in the same little package.

I think we can simplify our lives no matter where we live. For me, being a slightly dense sort, I need to be banged on the head by the rising sun and moon. I need to sit in the middle of a meadow to get that I am the same as a deer or a turkey buzzard. I am just part of this great whole, fortunate enough to be spending some time on this beautiful blue planet. I am learning to find joy in everything and nothing all at the same time. And it is uproariously joyful. And if you're passing this way, there is a chair waiting in the meadow for you.


  1. Thank you for the invitation!Our heart has always urged us to simplify but our head takes is a beautiful feeling when can achieve this. Thank you for this reminder

  2. I have so enjoyed this calm and content wander through your garden.

    I've made my way out to your meadow.
    I'm sitting beside the hay bale placing my teacup atop the checkered cloth.

    Thismoment of respit will follow along with me through this day now so gently rooted in the quiet.

  3. You paint a lovely "picture" here with your words. Ah, yes - the flow of living, following the whispers of the Heart, embracing it all... ;)

    You might need to set out several extra chairs to accommodate us all!

    Glad you're enjoying your experience!

  4. I would so love to sit in your meadow and eat off the hay bale table; what a lovely image! The joy of life really is about the simple things, the flow, being in the moment...

  5. hmmmm... I'm thinking we should all send you squares of cloth and you can sew together a Buddha robe of a table cloth! (The patchwork robes of monastics represent the rice fields so a Buddha robe table cloth in a meadow would be like a triple gem of symbols!)

  6. Oh I think that Genju is onto something...a triple gem of symbols...who could resist.

  7. Thanks to everyone for coming to my picnic. I love this table cloth idea too! A Buddha Robe table cloth representing nourishment, what could make the dining experience more complete? And with contributions from everyone! Now everyone will want one, a community in a tablecloth! I think we all should have one. We can exchange little cloth squares!

  8. ok, I am coming over :) where do you live?

    love how you created your own paradise. all that work of searching, letting go, trusting, rewarded, right where you are.

    may your day be lovely, and filled with even more mindfulness.

    and thanks for stopping by Mind Deep. i appreciate the gift of our (almost) daily connections.

    deep bow.

  9. I have material leftover from sewing my rakusu which I'd love to share with all of you. Send me your addresses via the contact form on my blog (it's confidential) and I'll ship 'em out. :-)

  10. That sounds wonderful. And from your rakusu, very auspicious! And I would like to do the same for anyone interested. I think there is a contact box on my profile, so send those addresses.