Sunday, July 13, 2008

Sacred Life Sunday: Learning from Birds...


"The witnessing soul is like the sky. The birds fly in the sky but they don't leave any footprints. Man who is awakened lives in such a way that he leaves no footprints. He is without wounds and without scars; he never looks back -- there is no point. He has lived that moment so totally that what is the need to look back again and again? He never looks ahead, he never looks back, he lives in the moment."

-Maapragyashree

If it seems that I pound this message a bit more than necessary at times, here's why:

I see the suffering caused by striving, craving, desiring, wanting, ego gratification as the motivator, people pressuring themselves to be someone other than who they are and accepting nearly-impossible standards to meet. Having to be more, be better, never good enough, never enough, own more, strive more, want more. More, more, more!

I read messages and talk with people - perfectly lovely people - whose lives are made miserable by the stress of it. I see cancer and disease that is caused by it. I see families destroyed by it. I see relationships weakened by it.

It hurts me to see so many people being so damaged by a way of life that leads nowhere. Since that particular bug never bit me, I see it from this objective point of view and it's like watching a train wreck, unable to stop it - unable to do anything to prevent the carnage.

It probably seems to many that I should get over the need to communicate this, to emphasize this message. Leave it alone and let people learn their own way. Let it go. Perhaps when I'm too old to care that will evolve on its own, but there are times now when it feels like the weight of this is on my shoulders. That's been my burden. I've always felt the weight of the world on my back.

If I was going to die in the next ten minutes, I'd get on the roof and yell, "for God's sake, slow down! In the end, none of this striving is worth it. Slow down. You are okay. Just as you are. You are beautiful. You are a part of The Whole. You are in harmony. Just as you are. Watch the birds. Learn from the birds."

~*

23 comments:

slouching mom said...

This brought tears to my eyes.

So beautiful.

And the message is critical -- but also SO tough to learn.

hele said...

"It hurts me to see so many people being so damaged by a way of life that leads nowhere" Me too.

I think as long as we have a voice we should shout into the sky.

Sober Briquette said...

I don't think you can say it enough. Sometimes even when we know it, we need reminders.

crazymumma said...

I am surrounded by so much and I know I need so little. I fight this battle every day in my own small way, and then I get swamped by this unfillable need that my family has.

flutter said...

I wish I could believe that.

Molly said...

I think you are so right. So many problems in our world stem from "people pressuring themselves [and others] to be someone other than who they are." Someone I know very well has the attitude, in dealing with [young] people, that one "Aw sh*t!" cancels out all the "Attaboy!"s. Which makes me crazy, because then people live in fear that, no matter how well they've done in the past, or how good they've been, they might scr*w up today....If only you could get attaboys just for being you, instead of having to constantly live up to someone else's expectations.....
We cannot be reminded too often that the present is all we have. We should train ourselves to savor it.

storyteller said...

Amen! Well said … beautiful image and excellent advice.
Hugs and blessings,

meno said...

This is a bit prosaic after your lovely post, but i saw a license plate frame once that said "Honestly, what is your hurry?"

I ask myself that occasionally. It's a good question.

womaninawindow said...

Maybe if we all just keep reminding each other than we'll be ok. Here's hoping.

Mary said...

Hi Chani,

It's been so long since I've read blogs that I didn't know you have a new site!

I wish life would slow down. We pack it all in - as much as possible. Until we burst. We know better...

Hugs,
Mary

Olivia said...

Chani,

No, it is not redundant. I need to hear it...again and again and again, until I get it. I will meditate on this for the rest of today and hopefully things will go better. Thank you Chani, Love, O

The New Mom on the Blog said...

I once heard this saying before:
yesterday is history,
tomorrow is a mystery
and today is a gift,
that's why its called PRESENT!

the simple fact that I'm alive today, is what really matters, isn't it?

Zip n Tizzy said...

Such important reminders.
I overheard my husband talking to my two years old this morning, who is always gathering his things, that it is not the things that matter, it is the people we love, and the people we are, The things are fun, but they are just things.
I feel so fortunate that my boys have a father who finds it more important to spend time with them than to be constantly seeking out things for them.
Thank you for sharing this reminder. It's an important one!

Defiantmuse said...

ah. you said this perfectly. what I've felt for as long as I can remember.....

Jen of A2eatwrite said...

In its own way, my post is about the same thing today. I don't think this is something that can be said enough in this society.

Ian Lidster said...

You so often fill me with wonder in your observations. I try to live with the same attitudes you have -- which is why I find you so simpatico -- but I think you often succeed better than I do.

Christine said...

i truly believe this in my heart, but i find it so hard to actually do. i need to learn to just. . .

. . .breathe.

jen said...

Amen.

heartinsanfrancisco said...

Alzheimer's (or cancer, or life) is the best reason I know to live in the present. It truly is all we have. Second-guessing the future is futile and often wrong in important ways, and dwelling in the past steals our energy from the now.

Perhaps your mission in life is to observe and remind us, and you're doing a bang-up job of it, Chani.

Janet said...

I don't think you can repeat this message often enough. It's so important. Thanks for the reminder.

RKK said...

I love this post. I hope you don't mind me adding this:

My humble words, release it all!
Give earth to beast and pasts to pasts
For if not reaching from love's immortal truth
No thing has perfect meaning; no other surely lasts!

painted maypole said...

(this comment is not at all bird related...)

so I'm at my SIL's house, and what book should be sitting on her table? "the shack" i comment that a friend has just mentioned how much she loved that book, and she says she's finished it and offers it to me. So now I will be reading it soon... ;)

serendipitous, no?

we_be_toys said...

Amen sister friend!
What IS the point of racing through life, when you miss the exquisite flower by the side of the road?
We really do only have a limited time here - seems a shame to spend it all in a hurry, doesn't it?