While out walking early Sunday morning, I felt sadness about Austin moving back to a Stage 3 level of risk because of a rise in COVID-19 cases. After a few moments the book cover of Welcoming the Unwelcome by Pema Chödrön came into my awareness.
Facilitating one of four book groups about beloved Buddhist nun Chödrön’s wisdom June 2020, I found her invitation to welcome the unwelcome so helpful during the worst of the pandemic. No wonder it came back to me at this time.
Pema Chödrön invites us to be fully present to what is unfolding in each moment and to do our best to welcome whatever it is as a blessing. Sharing many practices, one she offers towards the end of the book feels so relevant now:
“When you’re triggered, instead of reacting in habitual ways, try to shift into a blessing: May this difficult encounter somehow be the seed for my awakening, and for the awakening of everyone who feels _______, and for everyone else’s awakening as well.”
Perhaps we can’t stay peaceful amidst the news of the day, but if we can kindly and gently nudge ourselves towards finding the blessing in what’s before us, we will be well on our way to being the peaceful warriors our neighbors, loved ones, and world may need.
May you see blessings in challenges, experience moments of peace throughout your day, and awaken to the truth of the difference you are making as you do so.
“Instead of seeing it as futile or depressing, we can see the limitlessness of the job ahead of us as a source of continual inspiration.” –Pema Chödrön
“Beauty is the harvest of presence.”– David Whyte