Monk In The World

To be a monk is to have time to practice for your transformation and healing. And after that to help with the transformation and healing of other people.

Thich Nhat Hanh

Friday, July 1, 2011

Paying Attention

(Posted at
Dear Caroline,
That's a picture of you and your grandmother (Lala), doing what you two love to do together, looking at flowers, walking around outside, observing nature.

I guess this is "Mary Oliver" week. Look her up. She's a wonderful poet. 

Anyway, yesterday I was talking to a friend about the spiritual life and how complicated we make it sometimes.

( And by the way, the spiritual life is not something separate from this life. It is not something you do
and then go back to living an "ordinary" life. It is life!)
OK, back to my point.

My friend and I were discussing her spiritual practice. What was it? How should it be? How can one make time for it?
Well, I referred her again to the poem by Mary Oliver called "THE SUMMER DAY" that poem it states "...I don't know what a prayer is but I do know how to pay attention..."

I suggested to her that she just simply "pay attention", that was enough.

It's so important to just "pay attention", right now, this moment, this breath, paying attention to all the small wonders around us.

Again, back to the point of this little story.

Yesterday I watched your grandmother sitting with you outside in the grass, just sitting with you and letting you enjoy the warm sun, scratchy grass...her sitting there paying attention to you and you sitting there with all the wonder of an eight month old, feeling grass, looking for the birds, feeling the breeze...just paying attention.

What a wonderful prayer you two are together when you go outside and just pay attention.

What else was there for you two to do?!



1 comment:

jill said...

lovely! how hard it can be to do something so simple. good reminder.