Thursday, February 14, 2013


In virtually all of the hundreds of books written by exiled Buddhist priest, Thich Nhat Hanh, he reminds us that the secret to a life well lived -- to happiness -- even to possible enlightenment-- is to be fully present to our lives every moment of our lives.

 None of us does this/is this.

We play with smart phones in the middle of paradise.

 Too often, I sit in front of my computer and play solitaire instead of writing a blog or novel.

 Fortunately, my computer sits on the desk next to my study’s second floor windows. I look out onto my quiet street, onto the maple that shades my front yard in summer, and onto the comings and goings of people and cars.

 The other day I witnessed a mini-parade progressing through lightly falling snow. Three kids, each with a different colored umbrella, walked single file down my sidewalk shepherded by (presumably) their mom and dad. The three colored umbrellas – one blue and white striped, one orange with flowers, and one just plain red – provided the only obvious color in the gray and white landscape.

 It was somehow touching and beautiful. It was a moment and I was present.

 Then one of my cats walked in front of the computer screen and onto my lap. Sitting there, purring, that cat had no thought of the past or the future. He was fully present to that particular moment. His purrs brought me into the moment as well.

A present.

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