Be the moment. Meditation is real life, as Thich Nhat Hanh explains in this excerpt from a mail by John Croft to the Gaia Foundation:
John Malkin: In meditation practice, it is very common for us to feel that our minds are very busy and that we’re not meditating very well. What do you have to say about this?
Thich Nhat Hanh: Meditation is a matter of enjoyment. When you are offered a cup of tea, you have an opportunity to be happy. Drink your tea in such a way that you are truly present. Otherwise, how can you enjoy your tea? Or you are offered an orange—there must be a way to eat your orange that can bring you freedom and happiness. You can train yourself to eat an orange properly, so that happiness and freedom are possible. If you come to a mindfulness retreat, you will be offered that kind of practice so that you can be free and happy while eating your orange or drinking your tea or out walking.
It is possible for you to enjoy every step that you make. These steps will be healing and refreshing, bringing you more freedom. If you have a friend who is well-trained in the practice of walking, you will be supported by his or her practice. The practice can be done every moment. And not for the future, but for the present moment. If the present moment is good, then the future will be good because it’s made only of the present. Suppose you are capable of making every step free and joyful. Then wherever you walk, it is the pure land of the Buddha. The pure land of the Buddha is not a matter of the future.
John Malkin hosts a weekly radio program on Free Radio Santa Cruz, focusing on social change and spiritual growth.
[Image: Flickr, Tara Studio]