Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Doodling 'Shenpa'!

Well, as you can see I managed to use my curvy lines from my doodling yesterday - I've used them to depict hooks. On her meditation CD 'Becoming Unstuck' Pema Chodron, who is a Buddhist nun, uses the word 'shenpa' to describe what we would call a 'niggle' - a feeling which hooks us in and starts us worrying about something, and we can't let go of it. We just scratch and scratch at this 'niggle'. So I drew my picture of a cartoon me being hooked by some worry or other. Some of my random lines joined up to look like wings, which is why I coloured them in - I am by no means implying that I am angelic! For instance, my shenpa could be worrying that a friend seemed overly quiet today, and that it must be my fault, what have I done, etc, etc, on a downward spiral to feeling awful about myself. Pema's advice is to stay in the present moment, and when you do this you can't worry about the past or the future. Easier said than done, but meditation is one way of learning to 'stay present'. There are lots of books available on the subject if you want to explore further.

Sometimes I get stuck and hooked in worries about the future, wondering what I should be doing with my life. Amongst my ever present store of papers with things written on them I found this little gem of wisdom:

"Where you need to be you are, this moment, where you need to be. Take the opportunity to live it with passion and purpose. There is no reason to keep pushing the best of life out of your reach, saving it for another time, another place, or another set of circumstances. Now is the time, this is the place to fill with goodness and richness, with beauty and love. There is no need to wait or to hope for things to get better. For you can be your very best no matter what else may be happening around you. There is nothing to be gained by wishing that the past had been different. Instead, put your energy into living and fulfilling the best of the countless possibilities that are now in front of you. The value, the goodness, the love and effort you give this moment will come back to you many times over. Now is the time to invest yourself in positive, productive thoughts and actions. Stop making excuses and start being the best you can imagine. Stop waiting and start to truly and fully live." - Ralph Marston

So what are you waiting for? Be happy now - live life in the now - take action now!!

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