Monday, July 04, 2011

interdependence day

A poet friend of mine posted on Facebook today that his partner is participating in an Interdependence Day Parade at a Buddhist retreat in the Bay Area. Simultaneously, in my search for wisdom on a personal issue, I found a quote from Buddhist monk and author Thich Nhat Hanh:

 ...[I]f you take good care of yourself, you help everyone. You stop being a source of suffering to the world, and you become a reservoir of joy and freshness. Here and there are people who know how to take good care of themselves, who live joyfully and happily. They are our strongest support. Everything they do, they do for everyone. (qtd. in Why Talking Is Not Enough: 8 Loving Actions That Will Transform Your Marriage by Susan Page)

I definitely need to work on taking care of myself, and I know that a spiritual practice is part of that. In her book where I found the quote, Page describes what she calls "Spiritual Leadership," part of her concept of "Spiritual Partnership," and explains how one person becoming a "spiritual leader" can transform a relationship. One of her principles is that, when you are feeling dissatisfaction or disappointment with a partner, you should shift your focal point from them and your relationship to your own spiritual path. She quotes Thomas Moore: "Slight shifts in imagination have more impact on living than major efforts at change."

I confess that I have felt very much "out of touch" spiritually since Bob's death. Where before I often felt the presence of a positive force, a loving Spirit that provided guidance and lifted me up when I was down, I now find it hard to connect with that energy. I hope that will change soon.