Yesterday was Dharma Day celebrating the first sermon given by The Buddha in which he revealed the “ultimate truth” and the path to enlightenment. This day is celebrated on the full moon in July and is used to give offerings, study the Dharma, and deepen practitioners spirituality. I worked a double shift and had hoped to use down time to study and be in the moment but I received very distressing news that pushed me off center and struggling to stay within my practice. But was that all part of the plan set forth in the Universe?
I am one to turn lemons into lemonade 9 times out of 10. I struggled with this as my best friend had a terrible experience which law enforcement needed to be called. I agonized as I was unable to leave work to check on my friend, only able to field calls from him, the detectives and all our friends that were concerned. It was in their concern and showing of support that answers and lessons began to reveal themselves but I still was filled with dread, fear, and rage.
I freely admit I have an anger issue. The book Anger, by Thich Nhat Hanh, has been incredibly helpful in showing me techniques on nurturing positive seeds and showing me triggers as to what truly brings out that dark side (I’m nowhere near finished with this book). One of the biggest points I’ve learned so far is compassion listenings. It’s here I began to hear the needs of those around me better and understand why others and myself go from 0 to 100 more often than we would prefer. I got to receive a gift in all the dark that happened yesterday, and it was all the love and support my friends and those who barely know my best friend, drenched over both of us.
They say you know who your friends are when the chips are down. I agree and add you know who really is giving, compassionate, and kind when they freely offer things they truly don’t have to. Just offering tends to be enough and it was overwhelming the support and concern that came from all directions yesterday. If it wasn’t for them and my friends’ request, I would have lost myself in my anger, lost the reverence I have for the day, and lost so much more. I took in the gift I received watching the generosity towards my friend, which has now put my at ease and able to share with you today.
As much as holidays are used to celebrate the past, the Universe doesn’t really want us to go through the motions with symbolic gestures. I would have loved to sit meditate on the gift the Buddha gave to the world but I got to see so much in action I feel I celebrated just right. I received permission to continue my practice and increase my compassion towards all my friends and even begin to give compassion (like a very slow leaky faucet kind of drip) towards the individual bring this energy and destruction to our lives. I had to forgive myself for bringing him around those closest to me and realize each person is free to decide their path and what they will accept. It kinda helps in thinking about it in that manner but in truth, I am still blaming myself.
While others stopped to celebrate, I was able to use and deepen my practice just living my life. It somewhat brought up more questions on if holidays and these festivals really keep us more trapped than we realize (maybe about blog entry later). But in the end, my Dharma Day began very rough and ended with laughs and a deeper connection to so many people that didn’t have to invest as they did. I have been so lost in terms of feeling humans really could use their heart to listen and react but I have been shown on this Dharma Day the living breathing truth that is out there.
Share your thoughts in the comment section at the bottom of this post, like with the star and post on your social media sites. I truly feel together we can bring more compassion and joy to a world that feels sometimes like no more is left. I got to see with my own eyes how deep that pool really is.