Recovery, Buddhism and starting again
One of the things I have adopted this month is an attitude of acceptance of my own shortcomings. It’s an ongoing thing. You know?
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Each morning now I get out of bed (isn’t that a blessing?), and the first things I try to do is say, “Start again”. This simple phrase is powerful to me. At that moment, I am allowing all the things that I used to beat myself about to be assigned to the past. I begin today to make the most of what I have.
For instance, yesterday I awoke in ideal surroundings. The sunrise was as spectacular as any I had seen, and I was awake and with the camera at a stunning new location. In Halliday’s Point the temperature was warm but not too hot all day and I basked in it’s relatively raw beauty. I bathed in the ocean, ate fresh salads for lunch, and everything I did was perfect. Even shopping in a strange town was easy, and walking around Forster was delightful.
THEN, a YouTube video I was recording didn’t upload properly and I lost my shit!
It seemed that I was useless, the world hated me, and that there was no point existing from that moment on.
When I related this to my girlfriend, she reminded me that sleep often was the best or ONLY cure for this type of anger. She was right, and in the morning I hardly had a scar from the previous night’s bout. Anyway…
Here’s a sunrise to make you feel better about me (:
What I Published This Week.
Buddha and The 12-Steps of Alcoholic Recovery, compares and contrasts the purpose of abstinence in Recovery and renunciation in Buddhist view of the Path to Enlightenment. This is a ‘point at the moon’ article, not an in-depth exploration.
The principles are similar and from the view point of a recovering addict and a devout follower of Buddhism, the importance of each are huge.
“By letting go of attachment and embracing the mind of renunciation, we can enter the spiritual path to liberation and experience true peace and happiness. By letting go of drinking and renouncing our previous self-centredness we find a life of joy and freedom.”
What I watched this week that I want to recommend to you is this enlightening interview with Dr Dacher Keltner. He has been researching ‘Awe’ in his role as Professor at Berkley for 27 years. When his beloved younger brother died recently, he felt that he had to write this book for everyone to know about ‘Awe’.
Some of you will know of Steve Biddulph’s earlier books, ‘Raising Girls’, Raising Boys’, and ‘Manhood’.
I’m thoroughly enjoying his latest tome, ‘Fully Human’. There’s a special section right in the middle which takes you by surprise, called ‘Trauma that we all have to heal’.
In it, Steve opines that having parents that lived through the 20th Century, we all mostly will have been given injunctions that continue to inhibit our growth. He says this so clearly and certainly that it’s hard to refute. Rather than try, I’ll just tease you with a list of the injunctions. You can decide for yourself whether you need his book or not.
Don't be close
Don't be important
Don't grow up
Don't be you
Don't be well
Dr. Wayne Dyer, Greatest Life Advice
In it, he speaks about the deception our ego plays with us in regard to reality. This is a major theme for me. Reality, truth, ego and perception. We often go around speaking stuff that we think is true, but perhaps what we see, hear and think is ‘erroneous’.
Have a look and listen if you have 20 minutes to spare. I have reproduced this poem that he reads in the video for you to reflect upon. Here’s the link.
The Cookie Thief by Valerie Cox
A woman was waiting at an airport one night, with several long hours before her flight. She hunted for a book in the airport shops, bought a bag of cookies and found a place to drop. She was engrossed in her book but happened to see, that the man sitting beside her, as bold as could be. . . grabbed a cookie or two from the bag in between, which she tried to ignore to avoid a scene. So she munched the cookies and watched the clock, as the gutsy cookie thief diminished her stock. She was getting more irritated as the minutes ticked by, thinking, “If I wasn’t so nice, I would blacken his eye.” With each cookie she took, he took one too, when only one was left, she wondered what he would do. With a smile on his face, and a nervous laugh, he took the last cookie and broke it in half. He offered her half, as he ate the other, she snatched it from him and thought… ooh, brother. This guy has some nerve and he’s also rude, why he didn’t even show any gratitude! She had never known when she had been so galled, and sighed with relief when her flight was called. She gathered her belongings and headed to the gate, refusing to look back at the thieving ingrate. She boarded the plane, and sank in her seat, then she sought her book, which was almost complete. As she reached in her baggage, she gasped with surprise. There was her bag of cookies, in front of her eyes. If mine are here, she moaned in despair, the others were his, and he tried to share. Too late to apologise, she realised with grief, that she was the rude one, the ingrate, the thief.
Until we meet…
"If you find it hard to laugh at yourself, I would be happy to do it for you."