The inauguration of Barrack Obama represents a turn toward our better selves. Humility. Mindfulness. Compassion. Honor. Respect. Service. Giving back. Making a difference. It is the fulfillment of Yes We Can. But it is only the beginning.
The following quote is taped to the inside of my medicine cabinet; it reminds me that everyday is a new day to connect with something greater than myself.
This is the moment of embarking. All auspicious signs are in place.
In the beginning, all things are hopeful. We prepare ourselves to start anew. Though we may be intent on the magnificent journey ahead, all things are contained in this first moment: our optimism, our faith, our resolution, and our innocence.
In order to start, we must make a decision. This decision is a commitment to daily self-cultivation. We must make a strong connection to our inner selves. Outside matters are superfluous. Alone and naked, we negotiate all of life’s travails. Therefore, we alone must make something of ourselves, transforming ourselves into the instruments for experiencing the deepest spiritual essence of life.
Once we make our decision, all things will come to us. Auspicious signs are not a superstition, but a confirmation. They are a response. It is said that if one chooses to pray to a rock with enough devotion, even that rock will come alive. In the same way, once we choose to commit ourselves to spiritual practice, even the mountains and valleys will reverberate to the sound of our purpose.
– from 365 Tao: Daily Meditations by Deng Ming-Dao
Like a sitting meditation practice when my mind wanders (often!), I keep gently returning to the breath. I am resolved with mindful compassion to keep trying. Like a committed yoga practice, it will take more than lofty ideals … Yoga was hard today after the Obama-celebrathon! I could think of so many excuses to blow off practice: It is freezing out, I have a ton of paperwork to do, cramps! Yet there it is, my piece of paper that reminds me of my commitment. And out I trudge, knowing that I will float back.
We are all getting a second chance with the Lunar New Year/Chinese New Year on Monday, Jan. 26. Think of the last three weeks as a practice run! No guilt that we didn’t lose those pounds we promised, or any of the other lofty goals we imagined. It is never too late to begin again.
Happy New Administration, and Happy New Year!