I was going through my travels in China, especially visits to Buddhist temples and monasteries that included several museums depicting thousands of years of history. It was as if seeing ancient relics reminded me of times spent with old friends. I have tried to include pictures from a few places below.
As you read… open your heart and mind and let them take you there. If perhaps only for a moment in time. Taking pictures always seems to help to take me back to see them again.
In what was my last city (Shanghai), on the last day of was was my next to last trip (2017), I wrote the following. Reminding me again that everything we need we already have.
Tuesday afternoon I was writing in my journal at McDonald’s on W Nanjing Road when I kept thinking about traveling alone in China and not having a traveling companion, something that seems always the case. As I wrote the words just came… Your traveling companion is not intended to be another person. You travel as if unattended through time, but rest assured that you are being upheld.
Live the life you are meant to become – be natural and unafraid. Be gentle with never a harsh word and let patience be your virtue. You are in no rush because you have already arrived. Again, let patience be your virtue. Let acts of patience be illustrated by your kindness towards others through virtue. There can be no rush to the virtue found inside yourself that you already possess. Do not allow weakness within yourself to cloud your virtue. Stay totally within yourself. Find the confines of what makes you happy wholly within you. Become the companion you want to be and this person will always be present. Let your own happiness be the sunshine that brightens every day.
Thoughts on Buddhism… Stand clear of antagonism – be the first to leave when contention appears and the first to stay when love arrives. Make your own perceived weaknesses your greatest strengths. Become the person others are looking to that soothes away fear and anger. Perhaps this Buddhist inclination on the trip is a signal to let go of self and that you stay within your own higher consciousness or enlightenment. Become a Buddha. Change yourself and change the world. Change yourself first – then change the world. Become or emulate the world the universe is counting on or looking to. Surround yourself with love and be happy with what you already have. Exemplify the person that you want the world to become.
Bring others to their highest endeavors, or selves – without judgment becoming the mentor they need. Be the companion they should have knowing selflessness endures, not one’s ego is what survives. Live solely within the virtue that defines you. Enlightenment is the process of self-change leaving behind traits not in keeping with who you are ultimately to become. If you come back to experience them – then use them to lose them.
Let virtue define you. It is not an either/or…You know the path you are to follow. Just do it leaving no one behind. Leave no one behind – not your family – not your students – not your friends – and not those waiting to be your friends. Become the road map for others to find the way for and within themselves. There is no choice to make. Live the choice you have become regardless of where you are. There is no paradox, only the paradigm you have chosen to follow.
If we want others to see beyond what they see as weaknesses in us – then we must first be able to see beyond what we perceive as the weakness we see in others. As we grow and mature, gaining wisdom and insight along the way – we must bring them along with us. Remember your own virtue is tied to having patience for others while the world is catching up with you…