What if we all went through our own everyday mindfulness practices considering the notion that everyone else is doing the same? Considering the notion that anyone could be a true Buddha?
And then, to take it further, what if we considered the notion that yoga is only one way of practicing mindfulness?
I think we would all be kinder, more open-minded, less judgmental individuals.
“In the sky, there is no distinction of east and west; people create distinctions out of their own minds and then believe them to be true.”
Yes, of course your own sangha or yoga studio strives for mindful living, But think of the girls in tights at roller derby. The woman walking a baby in a stroller. The kid playing with her puppy in the park. The AA meeting occurring down the street. The knitting circles. The running clubs. The botanists. The coffee drinkers. The surgeons, nurses, physical therapists. Strippers. The painters, poets, dancers. The boot repairman. The environmentalists and the builders. The Christians, Jewish, Muslim, atheists, agnostics. Even the shopping woman in heels, sunglasses, and purse downtown. Even the homeless man who reeks of whiskey and broken promises. Your own family.
And of course, the yogis—because yoga is inherently equivalent to mindfulness, right?
There are many ways to meditate…lovingkindness meditation is one, and there are many other ways of working toward enlightenment. Just because we haven’t seen someone in an arm balance or a glorious side arm balance doesn’t mean that he or she doesn’t have his or her own mindfulness practice.
We were told that bodhisattvas can’t judge other bodhisattvas.
Any person you see could be a Buddha—and those Buddhas are trying their best.
So be kind to them and be kind to yourself.
Open your heart to a human connection with people outside the mindfulness circle.
Love elephant and want to go steady?
Editor: Bryonie Wise
Photo: Wikimedia Commons/Всевидяче Око