the frame of the present moment
is free from worries,
a place where your heart is undivided
and free to live life fully in all its richness and glory
a place of stillness, as the mind
stops running into the past and future
a place of growing wisdom,
as mindfulness and breath awareness is practiced
a place of healing,
a final destination for your burdens of the past
it is your kingdom, queendom,
a place where the powers of
love, peace, beauty and understanding reign
a place where you can breathe with ease and be nourished
it is a gift for you every moment
I had been walking up this mountain for two consecutive days seeing a collection of white pieces of cement or stone on the path. It looked as if the pieces belonged to each other, but they were all broken apart. On the third day, I saw that some unknown person had re-arranged the stones into a shrine of a sort. It reminds me of what Thich Nhat Hanh says that we must be like organic gardeners, not throwing any of our unpleasant emotions or thoughts away, but work on transforming them. I put a red stone in the middle of this shrine of wholeness. It was one that my LivingTreeHeart sangha held at our last gathering after our meditation. I wanted to leave something of our sangha at Deer Park Monastery. I placed the red stone in the middle here for a moment.
“The one who wanders independent in the world, free from opinions and viewpoints, does not grasp them and enter into disputations and arguments. As the lotus rises on its stalk unsoiled by the mud and the water, so the wise one speaks of peace and is unstained by the opinions of the world.”
“If you feel lost, disappointed, hesitant, or weak, return to yourself, to who you are, here and now and when you get there, you will discover yourself, like a lotus flower in full bloom, even in a muddy pond, beautiful and strong.”
I had walked past this sculpture many times at Foothill College, but one day when I was not in a hurry, enjoying the fresh air, I peered up at the trees through the sculpture and was amazed at what I saw. Even without the camera as a frame, I could see an “X”. “X” marked the spot, the point from which I saw magic.
For me, that particular “X” symbolizes the present moment, through which I can see things I may miss. There is no hurry here. The frame of the sculpture helped me to appreciate the tree and all its curves. It became a kind of lens, causing me to see in a more concentrated way, just as if I were looking through the view-finder on my camera. It caused me to stop for awhile.
The present moment can become a frame of wonder. You can begin to see things newly. You do not need a camera. You don’t need the sculpture. Just stop for awhile. Breathe. Relax. Notice. Wonder. Enjoy. Create that frame. Be like a child and look out at the world through the lens of wonder.
“Hegel said, “Behind the facade of the familiar, strange things await us.” Familiarity enables us to tame, control and ultimately forget the mystery.”
Seeing this frog being rained upon made me think of the Psalm 139. I could certainly relate to the experience of stormy weather. Sometimes I get frightened that God knows me too well, but when the storms come, I get comfort knowing God is with me and knows what is going on.