The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeing new landscapes, but in having new eyes. MARCEL PROUST

Thursday, 3 July 2014

What I See When I Blog


Twelve Zen guidelines pinned above my computer — next to a photo of my sister, Elizabeth (who died of a brain tumour in her late twenties), holding my daughter, Anna.

15 comments:

Angela said...

A beautiful post.

George said...

A great design for living, Robert, and I find myself in agreement with each of your twelve goals. While I share the large goals of living simply and being of service to others, it is in the small day-to-day decisions that I feel I can make the most progress in my own life. One thing at a time, rather than multitasking; approaching every task mindfully and respectfully; giving myself abundant space and time to sit, walk, and experience the reality of the present moment. I like your point about making cooking and cleaning meditative practices. Indeed, I think that any task done mindfully and respectfully can become a contemplative practice.

I'm especially weak in two of the areas you mention. Doing everything completely is a always a challenge for me because there is inevitably something else beckoning, notwithstanding my desire to stay focused on the present moment. As for thinking about only what is necessary, I don't think that I have ever experienced such a day. No! I just realized that's not true. One the vast majority of the days that I am doing a long-distance walk, I think only of the walk itself and what it is revealing. Perhaps tramping is the perfect life.

am said...

Thank you for this post today. That is a dear photo of Elizabeth and Anna. Good reminders.

Arija said...

Your wall looks just like mine. I lost my sister to a brain tumour too and your Zen points are second nature to me bi=ut then, I am quite a bit older than you.

John Pendrey said...

You did that so well!

'New eyes' at my age. Vision is blurred. But,

Joel 2:28 "And afterward, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your old men will dream dreams, your young men will see visions."

The bible is not my guide. I leave any map, lose the well trod path and find myself,
alone.

Ruth Mowry said...

After a whirlwind week moving our daughter and family, I'm relishing a pause with your reminder of Zen things. Just what I needed. The one way I would change this list is #10: Make ________ meditation, i.e., anything can be meditative. Cleaning and cooking are simply excellent examples of everyday tasks that can seem a chore, or too routine, lacking beauty or meaning. Mindfulness is what we need.

Nick said...

Your list is now my list. Thank you.

The Solitary Walker said...

Thanks for all these responses. I was sent this list recently. What a gift!

Yes, I think cleaning and cooking are simply examples of a host of meditative opportunities. Anything 'routine' — taking a shower, getting dressed, mowing the grass, posting a letter — contains this possibility. Virginia Woolf nailed it in 'Mrs Dalloway'.

pilgrimpace said...

That's wonderful. Thank you for sharing.
Do you have a window too? I couldn't think without a view of sky

Andy

The Solitary Walker said...

Yes, there's a window which looks out onto a courtyard full of honeysuckle and roses — some sky too!

dritanje said...

9, 10 and 12 yes, are part of my life. The rest - need quite a bit more application I suspect. Thanks for reminding us though. Beautiful picture too.

Peter said...

No. 10 is big. Sometimes I'm so intense entering the kitchen that I'm angry at myself for needlessly making two trips to the pantry instead of one. But I've been taking the opportunity to catch myself. Measuring and stirring are particularly good, I find.

A very cool list.

The Solitary Walker said...

Thanks for your comments, Dritanje and Peter.

K Samulis said...

Love the picture. How did you manage to take it like that? More importantly..love the zen ideas. Have very much been trying to make the "housework" things more meditative rather than chores. And trying to do them completely! Not just leaving things to be carried up..then later put away..do the entire thing entirely. It really changes how I feel about it. IT is no longer just a distraction to be gotten thru...which can lead to just getting thru a day..or getting thru with my life!

The Solitary Walker said...

Just a Mac Iphoto tweak, Karin... Thanks for visiting!