Tuesday, March 10, 2009

What A Difference A Year Can Make!

Last year on this day we received nearly a foot of snow. At this moment it is 76 degrees and the daffodils are blooming. Overnight, however, a cold front will move in and tomorrow the temperature will be 30 degrees colder. O well, I could be shoveling the sidewalk.

Today at work I was basically told I am too humble. This shocked me a little because I am anything but humble. It did make me happy, though, because my attempts to not be arrogant may be working. Truthfully, even though I believe and accept that I do have some talents, it has always been difficult for me to blow my own horn or to sell myself. I don't try to be great and I am not competitive with other people. I try to be authentic and cooperative with lots of humor thrown in for good measure. I think this is why many of my co-workers like me and why I like many of them. I can't stand pretension except in the context of progressive rock music. I especially dislike it in the workplace. Let's be honest. Most of us regular folks just want to get the job done so we can go home. If we can laugh a little and enjoy one another while we work, all the better.

Whatever living beings there may be, feeble or strong, small or large, seen or unseen, those who live far or those near, those who are born and those who are yet to be born, may all beings, without exception, experience a happy mind. Let one not deceive another nor despise any person whatever in any place. In anger or ill will let one not wish any harm to another. Let one's thoughts of boundless love pervade the whole world without any obstruction, without any hatred, without any enmity.
-Samyutta Nikaya
From "Buddha Speaks," edited by Anne Bancroft, 2000.

The illusory character of the freedom which we have tried to find in moral and psychological irresponsibility has become inescapable. Our abdication of responsibility is at the same time an abdication of liberty. The resolution to let "someone else," the anonymous forces of society, assume responsibility for everything means that we abdicate from public responsibility, from mature concern and even from spiritual life.
-Thomas Merton, Seasons of Celebration

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