My contribution is a moment from a Mandala week that happened not far from here, in an open house. I visited several times, here’s a note from my diary:
“it’s amazing, their focus and dedication. the monks at work don’t look up. some people were taking photos with flashes. and there were some parents with kids, too, and the kids got bored after a while, and started to play kid games. it felt disrespectful, but the monks didn’t react. i sat there, wanting to say: “please, be considerate. no flashes, please. and no loud noises.”
but driving home, i thought: i guess it’s part of laying the mandala. to not do it in a closed, quiet room. but to do this while the world around keeps buzzing. to keep the focus, no matter what. so powerful, really.”
And a quote, i remembered it when looking for the image in the files:
““There is a common misunderstanding among the human beings who have ever been born on earth that the best way to live is to try to avoid pain and just try to get comfortable. You see this even in insects and animals and birds. All of us are the some. A much more interesting, kind and joyful approach to life is to begin to develop our curiosity, not caring whether the object of our curiosity is bitter or sweet.
To lead to a life that goes beyond pettiness and prejudice and always wanting to make sure that everything turns out on our own terms, to lead a more passionate, full, and delightful life than that, we must realize that we can endure a lot of pain and pleasure for the sake of finding out who we are and what this world is, how we tick and how our world ticks, how the whole thing just is. If we are committed to comfort at any cost, as soon as we come up against the least edge of pain, we’re going to run, we’ll never know what’s beyond that particular barrier or wall or fearful thing.”
― Pema Chodron, The Wisdom of no Escape