Yesterday, just as I was getting on the subway, I glanced at my iPhone and saw an email from Abigail, my loftmate, which said “Certified letter.” There was no body to the email just the subject, because my phone didn’t have any signal. I sat on the subway for ten minutes wondering what the letter could be about.
I came home and read the letter (it really doesn’t matter what it was about – let’s just say it wasn’t great and it had to do with money, always something that is upsetting.) I read it, then took my eye pads (I’ll have to share the story about going to the eye doctor to get contact lenses and as a method of increasing moisture, taking a pair of socks, filling them with rice, heating them, and putting them over my eyes every day…but that’s another story) and I rested.
I decided, since I couldn’t read with the eye pads over my eyes, to listen to a download of a Pema Chodron talk. I found it on my computer and the talk began where I had left off six months ago: enlightenment. She said that no one she had ever heard of had ever really reached “enlightenment” – that is a place where they felt completely at peace with the world. She said even the most enlightened teachers still have moments when they get angry, or get ‘hooked” by something, but that the more we practice meditation and have tools, we find that so many of the things in life that used to drive us crazy, no longer have that power.
That is what I felt about that certified letter. I didn’t feel nothing, I just felt “okay, well, this is something to deal with.” This is such a huge shift for me. I admit that I used to be and can still occasionally be a bit of a drama queen, but now I have tools and I know that I can always make a call to a good friend (which is what I did earlier in the day yesterday when I was having trouble with a real estate deal) or go for a walk, or listen to a tape, or go to the gym, or do yoga, or get a neck massage (I did that Thursday). Dancing is also a great way for me to let go of everything that has hooked me during the day.
I wonder if the Buddha ever did swing dancing?