Wednesday, January 27, 2010

I Love Calendars

I love calendars. I seem to have one in every room. I guess I need lots of help knowing what day of the week it is! Most come from organizations I belong to -- a thank you for a donation and, of course, wanting another. Then there are the few that I am fascinated by in some way -- beautiful photos, wonderful words.

This is the one that has gotten my attention and seems to want to teach me something. It is an engagement calendar designed to bring the wisdom and vitality of the Buddha's teachings into everyday life. The theme of this year's calendar is kindness and compassion, which are fundamental expressions of a Buddhist way of life. Each month begins with a teaching, a poem, or a Zen story and suggests practices to manifest the teaching.

The teaching for the month of January was a celebration of the bodhisattva Never Despise, who appears in chapter 20 of the Lotus Sutra. This remarkable being does not criticize anyone. He/she realizes that everyone will be a Buddha one day. Well, easier said than done! I was warned by the calendar that I shouldn't be discouraged doing this practice. That it is difficult and if I could do it for a short time I might feel an incredible buoyancy and if I found myself judging, not to add a criticism on top of a criticism! Wow!

I found myself getting irritated with a checkout clerk at the grocery ... not paying attention to what she was doing with my stuff and talking to a customer in another line. I didn't say anything out loud, and finally, when I was outside the building, I started laughing and found myself saying over and over -- don't be critical!!!!!! And, I laughed out loud some more. I don't know if laughing and buoyancy are the same thing -- but it sure took the sting out of my irritation.

Another reason why I'm enjoying this calendar -- the beautiful art work!

I wonder what the lesson for February will be?

(I am posting this as my Thursday post. I'm sure I won't have time to post tomorrow morning. We will be at Anderson again. Mr. Dragon is having a stress test done as part of his workup for surgery. Keep those thoughts, prayers, wishes, white light, juju et al coming!)


Pretty Things said...

I love calendars, too. I have three that I use right now!

Barb said...

I'll be thinking of you and Mr Dragon tomorrow, Snap. Lovely artwork and a good reminder to refrain from judgment.

Janet said...

That looks like a wonderful engagement I'd enjoy. I know just what you mean about the clerks not paying attention but then I remind myself that I might not pay attention either if I had a job that paid so little!

My thoughts are with you!

The Bodhi Chicklet said...

Gorgeous calendar. I have four calendars myself! But I always want one more and I want this one! That Buddha had the inside skinny on how to live. Isn't it great to notice our own behavior? I grew up with the victim archetype very strong in my house and have spent decades trying to shake it. Now I am aware of it when it surfaces and it dissipates pretty quickly when I calmly look it in the eye for what it is. I'm sending lots of juju every day.

dosfishes said...

Deep breaths and laughs will keep you calm. Beautiful calendar.

Prayers with the two of you.


peggy gatto said...

Hey, ME TOO!!!!
Know all will go well for Mr d.
I'll be thinking of you.

Rosa said...

Sending all good thoughts your way. (My calendar is on the computer--how boring!)

Betsy from Tennessee said...

Hope hubby passed his stress test. I know you all are anxious for him to have the surgery. Please keep me posted.

Great looking calendars. I love my modern calendars. One of my sons gives me a new wall calendar every year of just WATERFALLS... LOVE it.