Greetings to all,
Like a summer breeze made visible
Luminescent blue peacock tail
Sweeps across pavement
Commuting to work along most of the main roads of eastern Ontario over the past 25 years I would have thought I had seen every conceivable mammal cross the road in front of me. Last week, heading home from my job in Beachburg, I had to skid my brakes to avoid a large male peacock. That was a first!
Week after week and month after month I’ve driven that same road and its easy to get lulled into a mindless ride, same old - same old. This little wake-up suggests a larger lesson. So much of our lives we take for granted, with no expectation of novelty or change. Blurring that which does not fit into our usual view is a favourite strategy of ego. It robs us of the richness and variety of our moment-by-moment experience. Like teenagers we respond to our lives with a yawn and a “Boring”.
All our forms of wholesome attention practice, formal and informal, prompt us to shatter that flatness with the legendary sword of insight. We cut through the tedium and the predictability to let the brilliance of our experience shine through.
The term we know is open attention. This means we adopt a perspective which suspends conclusions and judgements, one which is persistently seeking a wider and a deeper experience. This open attention is dynamic and flexible, stretching and collapsing as we need it to. It will of course collapse spontaneously whenever we become reactive and shut our awareness down. We drift into distant memories, emotion-driven reactions or lumbering ruminations on meaning. Then we must let go and begin again - where is my breath, where are my feet?
In Indian mythology, peacocks are symbols of undying devotion. We are immersed in the ocean of endless and unlimited love that is Amitabha. Keep your eyes on the road, you can’t miss it.
om namo amida butsu