Running With The Mind of Confusion

My daughter lives in Boston. I remember several years ago she walked from her apartment to The Boston Shambhala Center to watch me take refuge. Since living in Boston she has watched the Boston Marathon every year . . . Marathon Monday.  It is apparently quite the event in Boston.  The big city has a small town feel for a brief time as it’s citizens come out on an early spring day to share in the accomplishments of so many athletes. . . .  in the past, The Sakyong was among them. Today, two hours before the tragic explosions that will no doubt change that great city forever, she sent us a text. . . .  from the exact spot where one of the explosions took place.  She had since departed and is safe but my mind and emotions have been all over the place. What if. . . . . .  This very question is one we Warriors train to ignore. We learn the true nature of hope and fear.  Today I became aware that I am a Warrior on training wheels.  Heck, I’m a warrior in diapers. I could not get “What if” out of my head.  My mind reeled with all sorts of characterizations of anyone who might have been involved with such a horrific act.  I made some tea and sat before my shrine for a meditation session expecting it to be less than perfect but surprisingly I found some stillness.  Shantideva’s words came to mind, a passage where he explains that when someone beats him with a stick, he does not blame the stick.  The stick has no choice but to reign blows at the direction of the person holding it.  In the same way, whoever caused today’s explosions came to this act by the maturation of countless causes and conditions.  And now this act will set in motion future Karma.  I feel heartbroken, and helpless. How are we to establish Enlightened Society in the midst of this? I recognize that the people responsible for this tragedy were links in a chain of causes and conditions and that they have mothers and fathers who love them. I know this deep down. Nonetheless when I think of my daughter who,  but for the span of two hours might have been taken from me, my mind plays thousands of “what if” scenarios.  So for now, this ‘Warrior in Diapers’ will have to be content with only some cursory understanding.  That’s the most I can bring to Enlightened Society right now, but I will bring it and dedicate it.  I will plant that karmic seed and hope that it’s ultimate fruition will be as dramatically positive as today’s explosions were negative. With that aspiration I rededicate myself to Enlightened Society.

By the confidence of the Golden Sun of The Great East,

May the Lotus Garden of The Rigden’s Wisdom bloom.

May the dark ignorance of sentient beings be dispelled.

May all beings enjoy profound brilliant glory.

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2 thoughts on “Running With The Mind of Confusion

  1. Thanks Neil for this great reminder. Here we are on Basic Goodness Day and I have not taken the time to figure out my “author” status to post on my own. For anyone who has not heard, today we are celebrating Basic Goodness Day in connection withthe publication of Sakyong Mipham’s book, The Shambhala Principle. Although I am still waiting for my two copies pre-ordered I have read the first two chapters a couple of times and strongly commend them to your attention: https://www.facebook.com/events/150901535092532/?ref=22 . Like Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche’s Shambhala, The Sacred Path of the Warrior this text may seem simple at first, but I have experienced its impact on me growing with each rereading. One basic idea is that the planet depends on us, and on becoming completely convinced of our own worthiness, and meeting others’ worthiness completely. When asked by his young son “Does EVERYone has basic goodness,” Chogyam Trungpa replied, “Everyone IS basic goodness.” That’s a thought worth pondering every day, the marathon days and the seemingly simpler spring days. May it be of benefit.

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