In her book, “small bites – mindfulness for everyday use”, Annabelle Zinser teaches us how we are going to let go:
“You can ask yourself, ‘can I truly open myself up to all the changes in this new situation?’ This can help you develop acceptance, equanimity, and curiosity. Once in an obituary I read a quote from the Sufi master Hazrat. It has accompanied me ever since: ‘When the roof over your head collapses, you can finally see the sky.’ This quote continues to help me let go and develop an unconditional acceptance toward what is and what will be. Practicing with the small things helped me to see that I am increasing my ability to rediscover the sky during the difficult times as well. ”
Annabelle suggests that:
“Breathing and walking meditation are also wonderful opportunities to practice letting go. You need to let go of your in-breath in order to fully experience your out-breath. And you need to let go of your out-breath in order to fully experience the next in-breath. you need to complete the step with the left leg in order to to step with the right leg.”
Before my breathing and walking meditation, I think about the things I need to let go just for that moment. Then I start my breathing and walking meditation. At the beginning, I experience the breath in & out, and the steps with the left leg and the right leg. Then, I “let all worries, problems, and plans drift by like clouds in a windy sky” when I breath in. I “gently give myself a hug and I am willing to let go” when I breath out. I start to see the sky as the clouds have been being drifted.
When I am reading “Just for today” (one of the textbooks for the Narcotics Anonymous group) this morning, I am reminded that “Though I may be feeling low, I don’t need to tear someone down to build myself up…The way to build our self-esteem is not to tear others down but to build them up through love and positive concern. To help us with this, we can ask ourselves if we are contributing to the problem or to the solution. Today, we can choose to build instead of destroy”.
Today, I choose to build. What/how about you? What/how about tomorrow?
In his book, “The Tao of Daily Life”, Derek Lin points out that “in our conflict-oriented culture, we have a tendency to counter force with force. If someone yells at us, we yell back louder. When we feel disrespected, our first impulse is give that disrespect right back…the conventional approach is all about confrontation and clashing. It is the ‘hard’ path to traverse through life because it focuses on the external manifestations of power. Its method is to pump up the self by diminishing others”. Have you seen and experienced what Lin describes in your life & world? Yes, I have…
Lin offers us the Tao approach that “isn’t about confrontation and clashing. Instead, it is all about redirecting and channeling. It is the ‘soft’ path because it focuses on internal strength. Its goal is to improve oneself so that everyone can win…when you make a gut-level decision to commit yourself to this teaching, to be like water and allow the soft to overcome the hard … that is when your world, your life, and your fate will undergo a startling transformation. When you improve your character and elevate your spiritual understanding by utilizing the Tao approach .. that is when your destiny will never the same again!”
As I am getting older, my internal strength and confidence are getting stronger, I have more power to love, let go and forgive. That is the way of Tao.
Kahlil Gibran, a Lebanese-American writer, poet and visual artist wrote a poem called “On Children”:
“And a woman who held a babe against her bosom said, Speak to us of Children. And he said: Your children are not your children. They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself. They come through you but not from you, And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.
You may give them your love but not your thoughts, For they have their own thoughts. You may house their bodies but not their souls, For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow, which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams. You may strive to be like them, but seek not to make them like you. For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday. You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth. The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite, and He bends you with His might that His arrows may go swift and far. Let your bending in the archer’s hand be for gladness; For even as He loves the arrow that flies, so He loves also the bow that is stable.”
Even this poem was written long time ago, as both a son and a father, I think it is out of date. As a son, I always want to be that arrow; as a father, I hope to be that bow. May the archer, the creator of life help me.