Monday, January 19, 2009

Life is good

This blog is dedicated to one of my oldest friends (in terms of length of time, not age) who recently came back to my life. I wrote her an email yesterday, telling her about the small pleasures of my life. I ended the email with a simple statement: Life is good.

That statement touched her deeply because of its simplicity. She wrote: I loved the phrase you wrote, "LIFE IS GOOD". It has been a long time since I actually heard it. It sounded so good, I felt it in the pit of my stomach. I read it and reread it so many times, to make sure that it would not disappear. Her statement made me cry. I've been so happy for so long, I forget that it's actually rare. She asked me to write more about it, in simple terms. So here it goes.

While my blog tends to focus on issues I have, I want everyone to know that the issues are the exception. The basic ground of my life is happiness, and once in a while some issues arise which I address. I forget that for many people suffering seems to be the basic ground of their life, and happiness only arises once in a while.

So why am I happy? Let's take today. It's a holiday and I got to sleep in. I woke up in my comfortable bed with my two cats sleeping by my side. It's January, but here in California the sun is shining and it must be 70 degrees. I did the laundry outside--which is where the washer and dryer are--in the midst of a beautiful garden. For breakfast I had quinoa, which my upstairs neighbor cooked for me, with cranberries and pine nuts; I added cinnamon and some fruit. It was delicious.

After showering, with the tub still wet, I noticed that a fly was stuck in the water. It's wings were wet and it couldn't move. I took a piece of paper and put it near the fly. I watched as the fly walked on the paper. Then I took the paper outside in the sun with the fly on it. Its wings glistened in the sun. Pretty soon they were dry and the fly flew away. I felt happy to have saved this fly. It doesn't get more simple than that.

Then my cat Max came running in from the garden where he was playing. A dog barking had frightened him. His white paws were dirty and he looked at me with an attitude that said, "Yeah? What's your problem?" I had to laugh.

I got on my computer and had several emails from good friends, among them the one asking me to write about life being good. Gratitude bubbled up from my heart spontaneously, not because I was suppose to be grateful but because I was in awe of how beautiful my life is.

My life is abundant. In this moment I am healthy; I have enough money; I have a beautiful home; I have two healthy cats; I have friends who love me even if they don't always agree with me; I have a boss who actually cares if I am unhappy even if she can't wave a magic wand and make everything better immediately; I have the freedom to say and write what I think; I live in one of the most beautiful areas of the world. Life is good.

My prayer is that all beings experience life as being good. This is possible. But it involves taking responsibility for your life. It involves knowing what you want, eliminating what you do not want, and having the courage to follow your dreams.

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