Sunday, 5 October 2014
I never realised just how intensive some people go through life being immersed in being peeved. Not just the irrational annoyed with a situation or moment. Rather the continuous grumpy disposition at all and sundry. Then to top it off they get irrationally irate at those who find life like a large colourful lollipop – there for all to enjoy and have a taste of. This comment comes from a direct experience I just had while on a study trip to a land composed of drastic contrasts and contradictions. I had decided to do something that I had never done to date – go on a study trip and share a room with a fellow traveller whom I did not know. I had considered this would be of benefit for me not just from a financial situation but also to be able to share and explore new experiences together while being in a foreign land. It was instead a powerful lesson in the diversity and contrasts of human nature and its strong play on the individual.
My room colleague was a Russian, pensioned maths teacher. A mother and grandmother, who also taught Qigong but not that from my teacher’s method but another school. She and I had had one short conversation on the phone prior to deciding to share a room but had not met before hand. I met her the first time in the first hotel we were to share in Chengdu, China, as the keys for the rooms where handed out. My first impression was on her very downward turned mouth and set facial expression, a sign of someone who was feeling imposed upon I thought.
I find having been working in the gastronomy now for over thirty-two years that my gauging of a persons personality, from the first facial contact to an actual verbal interaction leaves me in good stead for what to expect. I am rarely off track with my first impression either. We humans are very expressional creatures on our outside casing that is when it comes to showing our inwardly views, outwardly and I am usually right on line in reading “between the lines” the face over from me. I am also very adaptable when it comes to “fitting in” and this can be to my disadvantage, for I will take care to smooth out a situation or make sure another has a comfortable position before checking to see how I fair. It comes from both my boarding school experience of feeling the need to have a secure place and my not wanting to “rock the boat”, my forced upon responsibility as an older sister to be mother and carer due to family circumstances, as well as my business sense/ethnic of creating an environment for others to feel right at home in, for me to work in.
Hence so it was here on my so-called holiday/study trip. I noted quickly what was the outwardly situation, also sensing from my intuitive stand something was not right here with this lady at this present moment. This immediately proved correct as she stated she was exhausted from the flight and just wanted to rest and not have all the hassle of having to deal right now with this strange land. I on the other hand had also been on my travelling legs for over twenty-four hours but was raring to get going and explore the mixture of sounds and smells from my surroundings that were pulling at all my senses. It was like the anticipation on Christmas morning before your parents had woken up and you had sneaked down to peek underneath the Christmas tree, if perhaps there had been a transformation around it over night (from its bare “alone stand” to an overabundant volume of expansion of pressies from Santa which nestled underneath the branches just waiting to be opened) waiting with your name on a tag for you to open. I was literally bursting at the seams to “go!”
So I already began then and there to fall into my “self made” trap that I think I know and thought I had mastered but strangely seem to continuously forget. I started to smooth things over, which is for me a “second nature trait” and console with words of encouragement, as we prepared to “refresh” ourselves, my room partner to meet up with the group again. I was very focused on getting everything possible out of this study trip and that is also how I actually see myself in living life too. I have had a bucket full of dramatic situations in my forty-eight years (I wonder what sometimes I consciously signed up for when I discussed my life plan for this period?) and if I have learnt for me personally, anything from these “occurrences” it is to keep my eyes focused on what is ahead, my mind open to experiencing what I am given, my ears ready to hear a new possibility and to allow my soul, the chance to explore the channels for growth that open up. I was going to get a full dosage of my own ideology or “medicine” on this trip and more.
So a three-week period of walking in the shoes I preach and that I wear literally began. How can one be an adult yet feel again ten years of age? How can you know what you are doing “automatically” on some kind of crazy autopilot and still kick yourself at the same time for doing it? How can your adult self take the hand of the child within you when you’re aching and redirect your footsteps to a smoother path? By me it was with a lot of physical pain and mental aguish. For I had to realize what I often over look, due to wanting to help, is my own well being - for not everyone likes to see the sunny side of life. Not all can embrace the differences we each have, with an acceptance that “all is good”, just as it is. Not everyone even wants to. Hell who wants the sugary seal?! I am not everyone though (maybe you have guessed that) and I must acknowledge that some people love to complain, sigh, willow delightfully in a sour soup of frustration, discontentment and pain.
Why on earth anyone would take this agenda for their life path is beyond me but when you have the choice to experience something else I know we all learn at different speeds and timetables than each other. For although my glass is always half full, a lot of people find the amount in their glass continuously needing to be “re-topped”. So it was that I lived fourteen days of sharing the new experiences of understanding “Yangsheng” (to develop ones own caring of your own life essences) in a very “hands on”, direct manner from both an eastern and westernized view. I came to see that my attitude is for some a magnet to being able themselves to “open up” to something new and different, while for others it is a “thorn in their side” because they wish to condemn rather than uplift their fellow human being; placing themselves on a pedestal of being “better”.
But most importantly I saw I cannot and should not place myself down because another has chosen to step along a pathway I do not find empowering or benefitting me. It is of highest importance that we not only live our belief’s with a caring and loving heart but also that we do not lie to ourselves by denying our happiness because of the well being of another’s. I can try to support you in your choices but it does not mean I should give up my balance to create at all costs a smoother experience for you. I afterwards (this above mentioned period) got a room of my own for the last leg of the trip and noticed immediately a stone weight lift from my shoulders, as I continued to explore China.
Caring for our life energies requires that we are honest with ourselves. I love life. Whether it gives me a heck of a lot of hard knocks (and shit it has) or lavishes me with colourful flowers of a sweet smelling nature (which I embrace) I want to share unconditionally what I see, experience, live; with you and I expect from you nothing in return. It is how I am. I will give often beyond the healthy boundaries of giving (for me personally) and I found out on this trip, once again that is not how you nourish your life energies, it is rather how they become blocked or inhibited to expanding when you yourself stand in their way. It was for me a definite “at last” eye opener to how I need to readdress where I invest my time and immediate awareness. It showed me that I should evaluate when it is profitable for me to “go ahead” or “ release immediately” a feeling, an item or a situation before it saps away at my core. It took a woman whom stood “against me” to tell me; “leave me alone with your attitude” to wake up to the fact some people do not want joy. They wallow in gloom and want to stay stuck there. They need to be dragged down and beaten. I saw clearly I am not at fault either for this situation or any other. I just live on another plane and that is good so and I can live with that.
So when you read this reflect, upon how you view life. How you like to nourish your system in the mental and spiritual levels as well as the physical. Accept that it is your way and get on with your day. Join not in another’s “style of being” unless you want to. Really inwardly want to. Take on only that, which you can stand by, only that which you want to carry. Leave all the other “crap” on the wayside. Remember you decide how your day will unfold. No one else has the power to tell you how it will or wont develop. No one person can tell you to stop being happy, loving life and living it to the fullest or giving freely away your happiness to others for them to embrace if they wish to be touched by your infection for being empowered by life itself. You are your own person. You are the rays of sunshine or the liquid jewels of light captured in the rain if you want to be. You need not be the freezing hailstones or thunderclouds of another’s barometer to life’s seasonal mood swings.
You are who you want to be. I am I and I leave you to be you. You have the choice to step into my zone or you can leave me be. It is ok to acknowledge this and just simply be. It is healthy to know how to be and nourish that which helps you grow and live.
I was walking back from climbing over 11,000 steps to the Forbidden City upon the holy, Wudang mountains (a 14th century old temple region that is classified under the UNESCO World Heritage Site); it was misty, tropical hot and dismal. No view beyond my hand. I was taking my time to return to my hotel.
A Taoist monk suddenly fell in step with me. He turned towards me and asked in English (how did he know I spoke English?) “Have you just come from the pilgrimage?” (Climbing the mountain) “Yes I have” I answered. “Did you feel disappointed because you had not a view today?” he asked. I answered; “I chose to climb a way which required only that I look to where my feet landed. Noticing what was within my immediate region. Nothing more was asked of me. I needed to do no more than that. It was perfect just as it was” I answered.
His reply blew me over. It still sits with me today deep in the crease’s of my soul. “In the Chinese folk we say that heaven created us all. Therefore we all have a purpose to be here. You have found your way. You walk the Tao and that is a blessing.” He then dissolved into the fog and I returned to my hotel. Anti-climax? Reality. Truth. Never forget you know what it is you need to do. Walk with patience and care along your path and all will evolve as it should.
Friday, 3 October 2014
It is never about a new seasons wardrobe for this quarter or about a stylish hair do or getting those tickets for the latest theatre production when it comes to really living your life. They are trappings that may be somehow interwoven into your life, though they do not "make your life". So what makes you who you are in your life if not "your house, your car, your wardrobe, your job or your family"?
Perhaps it is the empathy you show for your fellow human being or the compassion you give to the animals in your care. Maybe it is the love that you hand out without expecting anything in return to those you love as well as total strangers. It is the placement of "small rituals" of goodness in your daily actions like a smile to a stranger, a word of thanks to a cashier or a silent prayer when hearing of someone’s pain or loss.
All the above can also be done without batting an eyelid. They could already be the natural attributes of your world and who you are. They make you a living example of being a human within society and not an outcast. Yet so very often these items fail drastically short in abundance when living our lives. Instead we run after fake timetables, castles in the sky desires and empty presents of promise.
No wonder so many have "melt downs" within the simple routine of just getting through their day. It is loaded with mine fields of stress, worry, demands and traps to trip you up with intention to maim.
Today while chatting to my girlfriend I saw something else which amazed me, for I hold it to be so normal and yet she saw it as being not of relevance at all. Being thankful for all and each humans energy expansion in creating and providing within my world is of me a natural stand. Let me explain.
When something goes wrong for my girlfriend, she blames a third party. Someone she has no relationship to she thinks but who is definitely at fault for what is frustrating her. For example when trying on a blouse in the shop and having difficulty with the buttons she will curse the "stupid person whom sewed on these buttons" over and over again as she struggles with trying to open them. She does not know this person personally. She can not know if the person is "stupid" (can not read or write) and her being incapable of undoing the buttons is her situation and no one else's.
Yet she curses another’s work. Condemns it and in doing so creates a negativity around herself, the product and all who where involved with it. Seems such a waste of your own life essence not to mention disruptive to someone else's by "condemning it". Such a small thing (you may think) when dealing with the items that pass through our lives is our reaction to them but the repercussions of our thoughts, words and actions towards these items goes beyond the small area we and they occupy.
I explained how I saw her reaction and my thoughts to it and she felt that was my personal choice to think like that only to "redirect" her thinking then in just as a negative way. She stated I had a point in mentioning it was perhaps not the person who sewed on the buttons and she concurred it was rather the designer of the garment who placed them to close! Oh yeah, she had only changed her transportation method from "one donkey to ride upon another". One blind fold for another pair of dark glasses. So it is I thought, a businesswoman who needs someone else to be responsible for her actions when actually she is in charge of them herself. Funny she could not "see" that.
Just as I am in charge of my own life’s pathway; my own reaction to my environment and my providing, within the small sphere I am in a difference, so are you. What I do does create a ripple effect that goes beyond where I can see or feel. Yet hopefully it will give a result somewhere else, which shows I am making something of my life and creating a positive difference by doing so for another’s.
So please do not curse a strangers work. Make their contribution, to your having an item in your pocession be a meaningful action and not placing them in a lower class standing then yourself, which they are not, by complaining. This is not the case and never will be. Each and every human being has a life task, a purpose and all go about achieving it the best way we can within the moment of time we stand. Judge not. Learn rather to be thankful someone else provided you with an item that you feel you need and in doing so you provided him or her with a reason to live their life, for who they are, by giving them a job. So you could and can live your life as you wish but let it be uplifting for all and not only you.
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