Hello, Dalai! You rock.
I beat the sun today, and the first thought in my head (after "Jaysus will I ever get back to sleep" and "my hips hurt") was that, today, I'll take some time to listen—not to speak, or to write, but to listen. Writing has come a little too easily lately, as there is so much to observe and say, and so much time to write... but with the writing and the publishing comes the fretting. Figured I'd skip the writing, prevent the fretting.
You see how well that worked out.
Hard: The listening. Way more hard: The stopping. While the coffee brewed, I congratulated myself for beating my previous Stopping and Listening record (17 seconds) and rewarded myself with a quick peek on Facebook. You know, to look at things people may have tagged me on or invited me to listen to. The plan: Absorb what nice friends are sharing; only look for the positive and uplifting.
Well, there, among my 2,033 very, very, very close friends on Facebook was a post from my college bestie the Dalai Lama. I mean, we're not that close—it's not like he came to our wedding or anything—but he does write from time to time, just to, you know, blow my mind.
Today, he had this to say:
I’m 85 and physically very healthy. I feel this is because my mind is peaceful
as a result of my cultivating altruism. My favourite prayer says:
"For as long as space endures,
And for as long as living beings remain,
Until then may I too abide,
To dispel the misery of the world."
And, in trying to fulfil that aspiration, I feel my life has been of some benefit.
So.... Even if we are one of those doers who is challenged by stopping, if we're going to "do," how about doing for others? It doesn't mean we will live 'til 85; it's possible that we are 51 and our hips hurt. But we can increase our chances of feeling pretty damn okay if we can live knowing that we are doing things to dispel the misery of the world.
Dalai. Dude! You rock. I love you, man. Next beer's on me.