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  • Writer's pictureeschaden

Buddha Shadow

I have a little Buddha statute on my nightstand. It has been there for years...this isn’t really significant since I have Buddhas all over my house and yard...but this one on my nightstand has recently taken on new meaning...

When I awoke this morning, I turned toward the night stand to turn off the alarm that was blaring and I noticed that the backlight from the phone charger was illuminating a beam which lit up the Buddha statute and cast its shadow onto my closet door.

There was this large image of the Buddha in meditation on my wall.

As the sun rose, I noticed that the rising sun similarly lit up this particular statue and again recasts its shadow onto the wall.

Besides being beautiful, it seems to be a messenger to me...

I have been having a hard time meditating lately and I have no good reason. My mind is super active lately but my demeanor is calm, collected not hyper or distracted. I am not in excruciating emotional pain anymore so I am not sure what is blocking my willingness but blocked it is! And honestly has been since November...

I used to meditate every morning without fail. Now, it is part of my morning routine that I happily skip every single day. I tell myself that I will do it later, but I don’t. Yoga has also fallen by the wayside...and similarly I am not sure why.

Meditation and yoga are two things that I used to do every day that grounded me, stretched me and really helped my daily life. I have been completely stubborn for awhile now in my refusal to submit, to do the work. I still yoga and sit some days but those days are sporadic and infrequent.

While the reason I am about to throw out there is relatively dumb, it is what started this whole silent got cold. I meditate and yoga in my outside meditation garden. It is part of my routine and I love it out there. On the weekends, I read and write there and find so much peace. However, now, it is cold in the mornings and I do not want to be out there. I want to be inside where it is warm. Before my son moved back home, I was using his room as my meditation and yoga room. I even spent money to redo my office to provide an indoor space for myself. But I don’t use it. I avoid it. A room I am in most every weekday, all day, but I do not make time for meditation or yoga anymore. In fact, I am wholly trying to avoid them at all costs. The way one might avoid going to the doctor or dentist when one thinks there is bad news or a painful shot waiting for them...And just like avoiding the doctor or dentist, my refusal to go only hurts me.

So I can clearly see that I am hurting myself and those about me..because when I don’t meditate and yoga, I am not on my game. I am off. I am much more prone to be angry, upset, agitated, and in physical pain. Yet here I am.

Besides needing to own my lack of follow through, I wanted to get accountable about my lack of willingness because it frightens me. I am afraid of what else I may become stubbornly obstinate about...attending meetings? Not eating sugar? I am on a slippery slope here and I know it.

But try as I might, I cannot change my current mental state. But I can pray for willingness. I can pray to be willing to be willing. So I am.

And I am pretty sure the powers that be are listening and sending me messages...pretty sure that it is not a coincidence that when I retire at night there is the image of the Buddha on the wall and when I wake up it is still there and then even morning light doesn’t scurry it away. Nope it remains, steadfast in its own meditation practice...silently sitting waiting for me to rejoin the fold.

What is really funny about this whole thing is that I know I will why bother leaving? It is like the alcoholic who decides that life is better in AA but decides to drink again even though they KNOW that they will just have to return to AA again and start all over. And the decision to leave, is really tossing the dice about their own survival because no relapse ever guarantees a return to sobriety or really being able to take another breath. Many drunks have thought that they would just have one more run...and they did right into a cold earthen grave.

So I can see while my stubborn refusal isn’t healthy or conducive to the way that I want to live my life, it likely won’t result in any sort of relapse, it is stupid and not life affirming. AND I KNOW BETTER!

I do not know why I hit these spots. Why I intentionally set out to hinder my progress and hurt my own wellbeing. I really have no answer other than my routine was disturbed by the location change and now I am struggling to find my way back.

And I have been here before. At the crossroads of stubborn refusal and the knowledge that I am only hurting myself so I know that it will come to pass but it will not be a timeframe that I am completely in charge of...

So in the meantime, I will get honest about my lack of practice and I will continue to pray for guidance and willingness. Some days it is really the willingness to be willing to be willing. And that is ok.

And for a daily reminder, I have my Buddha shadow that patiently waits for me to find my benevolence and submit.

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