I find peace in the Buddhist meditation group. I want to learn more about karma. Recently Bill, the teacher talked about guilt. He makes it more complicated than I think it is. I think guilt is anger turned inward; that is, I am ultimately angry about having had to do something and I blame myself because I am ashamed or afraid to blame the person I think is responsible and I turn that into thinking I am guilty of something because that helps me feel better about myself. Bill talks about self-cherishing and other things I think I understand but then it all slips from my mind the moment I walk out the door. As he says, what he teaches is what Buddha taught. That was a long time ago. Language and norms have changed and this is the west not the east. Maybe someday the Buddha and I can talk and get our language better understood between us.
I still am trying to determine if I believe in reincarnation. That might mean I am saying I believe in karma which might be saying I may have the chance to come back as a mosquito. A mosquito I do not want to be. Thus, I want to understand more about karma. What I get from Bill thus far is if I am a thinking, wise, kind, responsible human being, chances are I will come back as a human being similar to who I am now with the opportunity to advance. I like that. I want to come back as a strong, healthy, intelligent man or woman who is intentional about doing things to make the world a better place, in a good way. I want to be perceptive, empathetic, clear thinking, respected, valued, and viewed as a mentor or model for others as well as being a wise leader.
But I still have so very much to learn about patience, about not being judgmental or critical, about being smart and trusting I am smart enough to get myself and others through tough times. I know that I have been doing this for the last several years but I still question my own capabilities sometime, as we all tend to do. Now I want to see myself taking charge on my own and trusting all the growth Clo and I co-created is still with me. Clo shared some of her own growth with me and I suspect she is still trying to share much of it with me. Sometimes I think I listen and sometimes I turn a deaf ear. I think I turn a deaf ear when I get scared.
I was taught well by an anxious mother with very low self-esteem that it is not safe to shine. Clo wanted me and let me and encouraged me to shine. I think she is still doing that for me. I think she has pompoms and balloons and bubbles from a bottle that she gently blows into the air in celebration of any and all of my triumphs and successes. I think she breathes gently and holds steady when I panic and I don’t concentrate, and she waits for me to settle, always trusting that I will and always believing in me and in my strength, wisdom and courage.
Try being still with yourself. Try doing it when alone and try doing it with your partner or your family. It takes time, but the benefits have enormous potential. Think what it might be like if your life were to be free of negativity, criticism and blaming. Think how much you would like yourself if you were no longer negative, judgmental or blaming. Heaven! Peace! Hope for balance and harmony. All lovely words and lovely feelings you and your partner can co-create if you are conscious, mindful and intentional. Peace and harmony don’t just happen like magic. It takes work. But the Buddha is willing to help if you are willing to take him seriously and you do have the skills for a blissful life if you decide to use them. You might consider looking for a Buddhist teacher or a teacher of another persuasion to guide you. I did and it worked for me.