I’ve been invited to a charity fashion event and so after worrying excessively about if I should or shouldn’t go I finally decided that yes I would.
I then decided I needed something to wear.
As I was walking into the shopping centre the cool air whooshing out to greet me, inviting me in, a man with a smile came right for me.
This is a little awkward I thought, smiling at me, walking directly toward me, oh, I haven’t been hit on for a while, prepare for the ‘ring flash’……ok he’s really close now, holding out a hand.
Something made me take that hand and shake it. His whole demeanour radiated peace. His face free of stress or worry. So calm. He wore serenity as easily as he wore the handmade wooden beads around his neck.
He asked me if I wanted more from life, he asked if I felt like I wasn’t fulfilling my destiny, if I felt like I had uses for my life among the universe other than what I was doing with my life right now.
Yes, Yes and YES!
He then went on to tell me he was a travelling buddhist monk.
He certainly looked like he was ‘travelling’ and he didn’t mean by car or even bike.
His rustic tan (rustic=dirty) his tattered clothes, more hippy than homeless. Material objects had no meaning to this man on his path to enlightenment. Which made me remember that I was on the path to a shopping centre to buy ‘material objects’ literally. I wanted a dress.
I admire people like this man.
Some people dream of being famous and rich, I dream of peace and quiet! I dream of a magical place where people not things matter, there is no envy or hate, where everyone is accepted for who they are not what they have.
He then ‘gave’ me a book for free which I ‘donated’ $10 to him, to go towards his travels.
I will be reading it regardless.
I found it very coincidental to be approached by this man, maybe he was approaching everyone but I’d like to think that I was emitting positive monk-like vibes and I was specifically chosen.
It was odd because only a couple of days ago I had decided that I was a spiritual person. I guess I always have been but after reading an article in ‘women’s health magazine’ (everyone finds their spirituality in their own way, mine happens to be in a mag) which totally separated religion from spirituality and for me it sunk in.
I’m a spiritual person.
(Plus they had a quiz which also confirmed it.)
For the past few years I’ve been highly interested in buddhism, flipping every now and again through a book for mums called ‘buddhism for mothers with lingering questions’ which has de-stressing ideas and helps in finding a balance between being a good relaxed mum to being a person in general. (I also flip through the worst case scenario parenting survival hand book, it does actually have some great tips. Example -emergency bottle? Gravy boat or water pistol, who knew?!)
I love the idea of being at peace with everything. I want desperately to look like I’m in control and calm with everything in my life.
(Even better? To actually BE calm and in control.)
I think being spiritual means to be open to everything, to be accepting of humanity as a whole, to understand that we’re insignificant in the scheme of things, to know that we’ll never know it all, and really do we need to? I think it is to be everything we can, to help and offer and give whatever we can. To be generous to those who are in need, to respect those who deserve, not to judge based on religion, colour or anything superficial, and most of all to raise our kids with unconditional love, and to teach them all that we can.
And then I look around.
I take a breath and try to remember the serenity on that Buddhists face as I try to find the peace and love in my massive pile of washing.
I hum, as I kick more washing out my bathroom door.
I hum louder and LOUDER as my 2-year-old screams because I won’t let her wear the same dress she’s been trying to wear for 2 days now….
My hum is now a very vocal aaaarrrrrr…..as my 3-year-old asks for the millionth time ‘can I play sims mum?!’
I ARRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR……as little miss 4 declares that her sister stinks and she should have a shower because it makes us sad when she stinks.
I then ARRRRRRRRRRRRRGGH! As 10-year-old leaves Vegemite smeared across my bench top.
Ok so now I’m screaming.
Breath in and out, in and out…………….
serenity, peace, quiet, calm………………………
Perhaps I’ll continue to ‘think’ of buddhism, enlightening my soul and being at one with the universe and maybe put it into ‘practise’ in my elderly years.
I’ll take a vow of silence and sit.
Until then I’ll continue the work of a full-time mum whose life is anything but peaceful, calm, quiet or serene. It may not be as appealing as calling myself a travelling buddhist monk, but I know one thing for sure, I’ll never get lonely!
Enlightenment? What the heck am I thinking?
Perhaps I should look more into the chaos theory…………hmmm…