Sunday, August 06, 2006

Dharma Quote: Meditation and Joy

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This is the weekly Dharma Quote from Snow Lion Publications:
Dharma Quote of the Week

Meditation is hard work, but it is also the most rewarding thing we can do with our time. As we begin to see the mechanisms we previously took for granted and start to understand them, the knots inside our minds begin to loosen. We feel a tremendous sense of freedom, space and release inside us. As we begin to understand our warped thinking patterns and our neuroses, we see them directly. We begin to develop compassion for ourselves, for our pain and confusion. Now that we start to look with clarity, we can see the pain and confusion in the eyes of other people, and we naturally develop compassion for them. It doesn't matter how outwardly successful people may appear, we can see their pain when we look into their eyes. It is very rare to come across people whose eyes are truly sparkling with joy.

~ From Reflections on a Mountain Lake: Teachings on Practical Buddhism by Tenzin Palmo, published by Snow Lion Publications.
This is too true. I meet a lot of people every day in my job. Some of them are dead in the eyes, some are flickering and the light is about to go out, some are dimly present and joyful but with so much heaviness, and a one in a thousand (at best) is flickering brightly with joy and peace.

I am reminded of a client I have each winter, a woman with a lot of physical pain, but with a heart of light. Jane brightens my day each time I get to train her. She isn't looking at the world with rose-colored glasses, but she won't let the hard stuff be the whole of her life. Things are tough, but being alive is its own joy.

I am a better person for knowing her and having her in my life a few months each year.

She doesn't meditate, but she prays I suspect. She believes in God, and her God is compassionate and loving. We disagree about a great many things, but we always listen to each other.

Jane is one of the few people I know whose eyes can sparkle with joy.

1 comment:

Mike said...

That's a great story about Jane. I agree - there are so few people you meet with that sparkle. It's motivating to meet these people.