Leaving no trace

The wind blows through the sky and flies over continents without settling anywhere. It traverses space and leaves no trace. Thus should thoughts pass through our minds, leaving no residues and not altering our realization of fundamental simplicity.

Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche

 

Living in our heads

The Pueblo Indian told me that all Americans were always uneasy and restless, “We do not understand them. We think that they are mad” Of course I was somewhat astonished and asked them why. They said – Well, ‘They say that they think with their heads . . . . We think here,’ he said, indicating his heart

Carl Jung, on his encounter with a Native American elder he met in New Mexico in 1925

 

 

Clinging and pushing away

There’s an exercise that can help us reflect on the knee-jerk tendency to cling to what makes us feel good and push away what makes us feel bad:  

Sit quietly for a few minutes and become mindful of your breath as it goes in and out. Then contemplate what you do when you’re unhappy or dissatisfied and want to feel better. Even make a list if you want to. Then ask yourself: Does it work? Has it ever worked? Does it soothe the pain? Does it escalate the pain? If you’re really honest, you’ll come up with some pretty interesting observations.

Pema Chödrön, Living Beautifully: with Uncertainty and Change