Monday, November 18, 2013

Contemplative Monday



The following quote comes from 'Heart Advice, Weekly Quotes From Pema Chodron'.

ANY ENCOUNTER OFFERS US A CHOICE


"This is an idea that seems difficult for Westerners to accept:


when someone harms us, they create the cause of their own suffering.


They do this by strengthening habits that imprison them in a cycle of pain and confusion.


It's not that we are responsible for what someone else does, 
and certainly not that we should feel guilty.


But when they harm us, we unintentionally become a means of their undoing. 


Had they looked on us with loving-kindness, however, 
we'd be the cause of their gathering virtue.


What I find helpful in this teaching is that what's good for them is also true for me.


The way I regard those who hurt me today


will affect how I experience the world in the future.


In any encounter, we have a choice:


we can strengthen our resentment 


or our understanding and empathy.


We can widen the gap between ourselves and others
or lessen it."





24 comments:

  1. "We can strengthen our resentment or our understanding and empathy." Truer words could not be spoken, Jim. Great food for thought, and beautiful images to go with it.

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    1. I like this line as well Martha. It appears easier to do the former most of the time...almost instinctive. I need a lot more practice in this.

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  2. A tremendous amount of wisdom in this Jim, and one, that i agree, many people have a problem with and do not practice. Great wisdom for Monday, and all days

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    1. Hi Jeanne. CAn you just imagine a world in which we all practice this? Peaceful, ah-h-h.

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    1. Pat, thank you! Wish I had had more time the other day to be a little more imaginative with them.

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    1. Thanks Debra. It was fun taking them actually.

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  6. I'm sorry I had to delete I got a little too personal, but I agree that there is always a choice, but sometimes the choice is made for you and then you have to make choice that was never suppose to happen and those are the hardest...I love your photos

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    1. I suppose some choices can be beyond our control Lorraine but don't we have a choice to allow this to occur or not, most of the time?
      Thanks, I like rail tracks toop.

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  7. Yes indeed, widen or lessen, and don't be rash. Now if I could only stick to it!

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    1. Hi Mick. Oh you'll get better at this as you get older. I was terrible when I was young....always widening that gap!! lol

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  8. There's just something about rail lines that draw me in every time.... love the light here!

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    1. Same with me, Madge! I could stare all day at tracks.

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  9. I'm always trying to strengthen my understanding and empathy. I'm rereading my favorite Hyperion Cantos right now, and Empathy is such a critical component to the series. Do you know how much I love trains and train tracks. I am very sad that NS decided to rip up its railroad tracks! How many hours and hours did I spend walking their rails as a kid and as a not-so-kid! Your track photos remind me of the train station in Sioux Lookout ~ so many trains on the tracks there that we had to jump them not walk the rails! Did you ever see how far you could walk balancing on the rails? Roy and I had epic competitions down in Smith's Cove!

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    1. I agree Louise, empathy is a very important factor in all types of relationships.
      I am not sure why NS and Canada decided to go to transport trucks instead!! I have an idea PM Mulrooney had something to do with it.
      Oh yes, I used to LOVE walking the tracks and was pretty good at it too! Used to put pennies on the tracks too, just before a train went by! SPLAT!

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    2. I almost put the penny splatting in my comment! How fun was that! The engineers always waved at us! There was a volunteer in the fossil lab who drove trains for 40 years ~ He used to haul nuclear materials through the city! Awesome stories.

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  10. Thank you for this well-timed advice and inspiration!

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    1. This is what I like about Ani Pema, she has so much wisdom up her sleeve that she shares.
      Good that this was timely for you Mitchell.

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  11. This helped me, Jim. I can't tell you how much.

    Love,
    Janie

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    1. I can relate Janie. Ani Pema helped me through a very difficult time in my life.....she (her writings/lessons) got me back on track.

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  12. This totally resonates with me, about my father and myself.
    He's got his guilt and I'm left with anger, even after all of these years.
    I tried to do right by him after my mother's passing but it just got too much after a few years.
    I guess I don't have such a kind heart after all, at least, not in his case.
    I can rationalize the situation, but it is still too visceral for me.
    Food for thoughts though...
    Love, love, love those train tracks pictures.
    So well captured!!
    I tend to look [perhaps] too closely at them here,
    missing out on the general pattern which you've done so well here.
    Great light!!
    :)~
    HUGZ

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    1. Thanks Bruno. I had been wanting to 'get' these tracks for a while now....later in the afternoon when the sun was lower in the sky.
      This 'lesson' by Pema is a tough, especially for family situations. It is very difficult to rise above some 'family dysfunction' that you had nothing to do with directly but keep getting drawn into. Just ask me!!

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