Hello Beautiful People!

All we monks have is our breathing in and breathing out.” ~ Thich Nhat Hanh, Zen Teacher & World Peace Advocate

I remember stopping, suddenly, silently, when I heard this.  I brought my upturned hands into view and asked if they were truly mine.  “Did I make them?!”  I gasped with profound gratitude, noticing that my heart was its own entity, beating time within me, for me, without my effort or influence.  I felt the grace of this whole given experience.

“What do I truly have?” I ask.

I cut carrots, wash spinach, steam rice and combine.  “I’vemade supper!” I innocently proclaim.  Then looking deeply at the carrot tops, green water, and dirty pots, I realize that I didn’t make any of this at all.  I am but a creative combiner at best.  What grace these vegetables grew for the farmer, the trucker, the storekeeper and the cook.  What have we truly made here?

In Zen, they speak of a backwards step.   A gentle generous release of habitual claims and conditioned conclusions about what comes into view, we make more room for questions than answers.  Room for the beautiful openness.   “Breathing in, I am peaceful.  Breathing out, I am relaxed.” ~ Thich Nhat Hanh.

~ Mandee