It is said that the real cause of all suffering and hardship is that we are not able to be in a room alone with ourselves for an extended time. How easy it is to see that now that the usual routines of our lives have been disrupted.
Much that we have depended upon is being taken from us now. Not only are we forced to live more simply, but also to see who we truly are.
A lot of panic arises, not only from fear of illness, but from facing ourselves and those we are close to. When we do not have our usual routines and distractions to turn to, so many feel alone and at a loss.
But this time is also a great opportunity to become our own best friend. The heart of Zen practice is to spend time alone, not moving or running away. We take a helpful position, hold it, remove all distractions and are simply there with ourselves.
Rather than giving our attention to everything else outside in the world, we bring our attention home, within. We are retrieving our scattered energies, becoming whole.
This is a precious time of making acquaintance with who we truly are. As we sit in the silence, not moving away, but making ourselves available, a fantastic journey begins. We actually get to know ourselves, the world, and one another in a way we could never imagine. A sense of intimacy and connection develops all by itself. Our sense of being alone and separate vanishes. In fact a new sense arises, of wholeness, oneness and the great beauty of this moment as it appears.
During these difficult times this practice is so beneficial. Even a few minutes daily, will turn things around. Little by little, as we spend this time alone, we find that which will never leave us. That which we can always depend upon.
Brenda Eshin Shoshanna
Podcast; Zen Wisdom for Your Everyday Life
Each week I take a new look at daily issues and problems. When looked at from the Zen point of view, these problems turn into koans. Not only do we then find unexpected solutions, but become able to thoroughly enjoy our lives. And our problems.
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