07 January 2019

Is an easy life the best option?

Ever wondered what it would have been like if your life had been easier?

I sometimes do…

January the 8th is the anniversary of the day my right leg was amputated. This year - 44 years ago. Changed my life radically. Yet so much good came out of it.

So here we are at the start of another new year, and what to wish for ???

And at the start of a new year, maybe time to plan for a retreat, but first

       Thought for the day

When I was a novice, I could not understand why, 
If the world is filled with suffering, 
The Buddha has such a beautiful smile. 
Why isn’t he disturbed by all the suffering? 

Later I discovered that the Buddha has enough 
Understanding, calmness, and strength; 
That is why the suffering does not overwhelm him.
He is able to smile to suffering because he knows 
How to take care of it and to help transform it. 

We need to be aware of the suffering, 
But retain our clarity, calmness, and strength 
So we can help transform the situation. 

                      Thich Nhat Hahn

Speaking personally it is hard to imagine I could have learnt all I have in this life and accomplished all I have without having my leg amputated. And yes, there is so much that has been missed out on due to the amputation.

Clearly that operation back in 1975 changed my life irrevocably. Much good has flowed into my life as a result of all the learning the change provoked. And hopefully this life has contributed somewhat to that of others as a consequence.

So would I have wished for this huge change to visit my life?

Certainly not before it happened! But in retrospect? That is a harder question.

The sense is my life actually tried many times before the surgery to steer me in the direction the surgery demanded. This is speaking personally; for others it may well be very different. However, for me I know I was too young, too pig-headed to listen. I kept on the track I was going until my life, courtesy of the surgery, demanded that I change direction. You can guess by observation what that direction was…

Cancer is an uncompromising illness and it brought the best out of me. One of the delightful things about cancer if is you do approach it with awareness, it demands you attend to your body, your emotions, your mind and your spirit.

So what to wish for? An easy life, or something else???

At the start of a new year, we commonly wish each other good health. Maybe if that is not associated with clear awareness and some resolve, something else may be preferable.

Now there is a radical thought…

In fact, my wish for you IS for a year of good health and that you use the blessing of this good health to best advantage - for self and for as many others as possible. Also, the wish is for prosperity so you have the capacity to do what is best for self and others, and that in the process of living a serviceful life you find contentment, meaning and fulfilment.

With love to you all…


RECLAIMING JOY - April 12 - 18 2019, Yarra Valley Living Centre.

Details - call the Foundation - 03 5967 1730 or link here for DETAILS

The legend of Meditation in the Forest lives on!

This classic 7 day meditation retreat is on again for yet another pre-Easter.

In 2019 it will be lead by Ruth Gawler and Melissa Borich.

Some will have had the good fortune to have shared time with Melissa in some of our previous retreats. Melissa is a highly accomplished yoga teacher with a wonderful capacity to tailor yoga for beginners or the advanced. Melissa has also trained with me as a meditation teacher and is one of the people I highly value and recommend.

These two women will present a wonderful retreat - lucky you if you get to be there :)