The prefix meta- means going beyond. Metaphysical considerations, going beyond the physical, leads us into abstract thought. Abstractions of a spiritual nature cannot be proven. And yet, often, we believe these abstractions to be true. As humans will do, we argue about the abstractions. Some start wars and ultimately kill over these abstractions. I find this particularly odd and disturbing! Do you?
I have posted a picture of a dried sunflower in winter snow. This past summer sunflowers overtook my flower bed. I allowed it because I like them. They grew to be 8 to 10 feet tall, towering well over my head. Then they faded and I cut them back. Next summer I will probably pull the shoots and go the more traditional flower bed route.
Would you know any of this without my explanation? What did you see when you looked at the photograph? What layers of meaning did you give to the picture?
The dried flower against the snow represents the slumber of winter and the potential of spring inherent in the seed pod, just in case you were wondering what I think it means. It represents a stage in our spiral journey. And, I just like the picture.
Because I see people suffering, because I know there is a way past the suffering, I want to encourage people to start walking the path of spiritual growth. I know it helps alleviate suffering. Pain is unavoidable, suffering is optional. Do you believe me? Do you think it’s possible not to drown in the quicksand of tragedy, depression or anxiety?
Consider the Buddhist monks imprisoned by the Chinese. Consider Nelson Mandela. Imagine being imprisoned for twenty years, being abused and tortured, and yet, emerging stronger, still happy and able to forgive. It is possible. It requires work and the ability to look at the world from a different point of view. It’s all about a shift in perspective.
I’m working on it all the time. Some days are easier than others. Sometimes I am able to get centered. Sometimes I am not. I work on a meditation practice of lovingkindness. I try to stay present. I get lost and unbalanced just like everyone else but I do know what is required and I try to do it. I can even see progress occasionally! It’s worth it. It’s worth the work.
What do you work on all the time? What kinds of things do you do to reduce your suffering?