When Pema Chodron talks about shenpa, she refers to living intimately with others.
Her teachings have made me aware that my irritations are my own issues. My knowledge of this human response keeps me aware of the lessons I would like to learn instead of thinking that I must teach someone else.
“Aha!” she says as she lives with four other women for a month.
This pleasure trip could have become a nightmare if I had mindlessly and habitually closed my heart and opened my mouth. Instead, it has been a wonderful practice. My moments of irritation, self-righteousness, and assumed martyrdom were contained within my thoughts long enough to sift a bit of ego from the mix before pouring out respect and consideration when I finally spoke.
I feel encouraged. Not because I did it perfectly (Not!), but because I was aware of the pitfalls much of the time. I was happy to have remembered Pema’s words when I began to shrink into the seclusion of resentment. It helped me to make my times of isolation short and the joys of sharing more bountiful.
Once again, thank you, Pema.
“If the only prayer you said in your whole life was ‘Thank You’, that would suffice.” Tolle
My daughter has been deathly ill in the last few days since she returned from an extended trip in India.
I am grateful…
That her husband (with my strong support) demanded that she visit the doctor.
That she made it home before she collapsed. (She did, however, faint on the return flight.) But, had she been critical in India, I might not have been able to reach my virtual friends there in time to find the path to the best care possible. And we, her family, would not have been with her in this crucial time to help with decisions and offer encouragement.
That she has personal friends who are physicians and that they somehow (I don’t yet know how) heard of her collapse and appeared in emergency room to help manage the care that may well have saved her life.
That her brother, who was with her in India and was also becoming ill on his return, is suffering only with a normal flu and is doing fine.
That she has stepped away from the precipice and will soon be out of the woods on her slow road to recovery.
How could I not be grateful that we are able to reach out and hold her in our arms and whisper words in her ears.