"Life is our practice. If we listen deeply to what's going on -- if we're involved down to the very bottom with our life situation -- this is our true teacher, the most venerable teacher. Life -- roshi!" Maurine Stuart
This quote begins today's reflection in Diane Mariechild's Open Mind -- Women's Daily Reflections for Becoming Mindful.
Notice that Maurine Stuart does not qualify what life must be like in order for it to be our teacher. Any life -- our own lives -- are the teacher. What she does qualify is how we respond to life: if we listen, if we are involved down to the very bottom, that is when life can be our teacher.
So it's not just about living, it's not just about going through the motions, half-awake, unaware, uninvolved with life's depths. It's about plunging in, being aware, remaining open to the lessons.
It's about asking questions: what does this event/circumstance/person have to teach me? Will I allow myself to be transformed?
If we explore our pain, if we plunge into its depths with a mind- and heart-set of wanting it to teach us, then our lives of chronic pain can become, instead of burden, teacher.
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