The other night there was a worldwide meditation. People from all over the globe visualized an end to the corona virus. It was so late on the east coast, I had a hard time staying awake, but I did it. The teens were pulled from their bedrooms, and our whole family flopped on the sectional sofa at the designated time and closed our eyes and imagined a better world for all.
Prior to the meditation, Todd and I listened to spiritual teacher Matt Kahn who was giving a FB live talk. The one thing I remember from it was the question he suggested we ask ourselves, “With this choice, whose life am I improving?”
It reminds me of the often cited teaching, which suggests before we speak, asking ourselves four questions:
Is it helpful? Is it true? Is it necessary? Is it kind?
With this choice, whose life am I improving?
With this choice to stay home, whose life am I improving?
With this choice to call and check in with friends/relatives, whose life am I improving?
With this choice to criticize my spouse, whose life am I improving?
With this choice to continue to pay, if we can swing it, those who work for us with no benefits and no income right now, whose life am I improving?
With this choice to let the teenagers sleep til’ noon, whose life am I improving? (Mine. Yes, today I will allow it. Quiet time alone is improving MY life today and that is good for all involved). lol
With this choice to post whatever I am posting to social media, whose life am I improving?
With this choice to consume (food, media, whatever, _________ fill in the blank), whose life am I improving?
It is about mindfulness. About making conscious choices. About doing no harm, if we can.
I look out the window behind my desk, and see a blue-jay, flitting about. I see the tree branches sway in the wind, while the trunk is solid and unyielding. I note the overcast sky with the sun peeking through.
I make a choice to hold the suffering of the world in my heart. To not look away. I make a choice not to sink. Most of the time.
“I do not know what I am looking at, so I must not judge what I see.”
This line from A Course in Miracles buoys me.
I make a choice to be “willing to consider” there is a bigger picture here, one I am not yet capable of understanding.
Just the “willingness to consider” burns off an outer layer of despair.
This breath in.
This breath out.
Choice, by choice, by choice.
*I am teaching gentle yoga ONLINE at Sattva Wisdom Center, Tuesdays and Thursdays at 4PM. During this time of crises, a portion of of the proceeds from each class will go to a local food bank. If you are inspired to, I would love for you to come take a breath with me, from the comfort of your own home.