Monday, August 18, 2014

My Favorite Day

Here’s a lesson on mindfulness from Winnie the Pooh.  Winnie is taking a walk with his friend, Piglet. 
What day is it”? asked Pooh.
“It’s today”, squeaked Piglet.
“My favorite day”! said Pooh.
Many times I have described Zen as being where you are and doing what you are doing.  On one level we are always where we are and we are always doing what we are doing whether we realize it or not.  What makes an ordinary moment a Zen moment?  A Zen moment is a moment when we are aware that we are where we are and we are doing what we are doing.  How do you be aware of the moment?  You become aware of the moments of your day through the practice of mindfulness.  What helps me be mindful throughout my day is to be conscious of my breathing.
Breathing in, I am aware of the moment.
Breathing out, I am grounded in the moment.
Zen moments are not extraordinary moments.  They are the ordinary stuff of everyday life.  One evening, for example, I got home from work.  I went into my backyard to get my recycle bin ready for the weekly pickup.  I noticed my bird bath was totally dry so I filled it with water.  Then I remembered I had some stale bread so I got it out of the kitchen and I put it out for the birds and squirrels.  I gazed around my yard and prayed for rain.  I was in the moment and I was aware that I was in the moment.  It was an ordinary moment made extraordinary because I was present to it through my awareness of it.  Zen is this simple and this hard.  Today I want you to practice your awareness.  From time to time remind yourself to be aware.  In you state of awareness, notice where you are and what you are doing.     

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