Saturday, January 1, 2011

Four Resolutions

January 1st, tis the time to make resolutions. 

Mine definitely have an inner flavor:

to remember to be mindful, as often as possible
to practice formal sitting meditation, daily
to be lovingly kind, towards myself, and others, especially the difficult ones
to recognize the hindrances that come my way, and tell them off, in both mind and heart

Whatever happens in the outer life is secondary, and usually largely influenced by the mind's inclination anyway . . . 

What does your new year resolutions look like? Would you care to share?

May you each be well, and happy, and at peace, and at ease, including in the midst of suffering.


  1. It took me a while to make the list but I enjoyed the process of thinking what I want and need to develope and improve. Here are my resolutions for this year:

    -to be more mindful of my speech using kind words even when the situation calls for a harsh/cruel/harmful speech

    -to let go opinions strongly held that cause suffering to me or others

    -to deepen the practice by reading old and new books, listening to old and new dharma talks, going to local dharma talks and sittings as much as possible

    -to print one verse of the Dhammapada a day, paste it in my pocket diary, read it and think of its meaning thoroughly (having Gil's translation of it is of great help. His notes are absolutely clarifying).

    May all of you have a great year!
    with metta,

  2. I like all your resolutions and share them.

    But I've one simple resolution: to fail often and well.
    As I wrote about here...

    My you be well, happy and peaceful.
    Thank you for writing.

  3. I too like your resolutions but would prefer to think of them as helpful and practical guides. my 'resolution' is to stop having resolutions; I'm increasingly realising that I do not need to fix (in both senses of the word) anything.

  4. Maria, yours could be added to my list as well :)

    Reading and listening to teachings play an important role in my practice, for sure. AND I also need to be careful to not use reading, listening, talking or writing about the Dharma, as a substitute for practice.

  5. Jamison, just left a comment on your blog. I agree with you. Nothing worse than a (trying to be perfect) meditator. I see intentions more in the line of taking vows. Humble, wholesome strivings, to be dropped when the 'I' takes over.

    Simple intentions help me during rough moments, when wisdom becomes at risk of getting muddled. Intentions are also different than goals. Intentions come from wise heart, whereas goals belong to self-making sphere.

  6. Ed, I understand where you are coming from. I chuckle every time self-making mind steps in, which is . . . well, often.

    And I do find setting intentions to be a very useful process.

    Thank you so much for sharing your practice with me, us!

  7. Hi Marguerite, I did not make a resolution, but chose a word for this year..."connected"...this has an inner and outer quality for me to work with much like vrksasana, my favorite yoga pose. Connecting with spirit, with myself, with my wholeness, connecting with people and animals in my life, on my blog, and the natural world.

    Happy New year:)

  8. I like your resolutions very much. Though I do think I prefer the word intentions, it's softer. My intentions are to meditate every day and to forgive myself.

    I started the year by going to sit with Robert Beatty this morning. Beautiful diverse Sunday morning sangha. I even saw a woman from the place my grandmother lives, one I realized I had not thought of fondly when I met her in halls because she didn't seem friendly. Another opportunity for metta...

  9. Yes, self-forgiveness. Easy on the heart . . .

    I am glad you connected with Robert's sangha. I very much enjoyed meeting him earlier last year. His root teacher is Ruth Denison as you probably know already.

    Love your vignette about woman from your grandmother's community. One never knows. I like to think that behind every frown is someone dealing with some kind of suffering. Great opportunity to open the heart . . .

    And by the way, how is your grandma doing? is she out of the hospital? I have not been following Facebook updates very closely :)

  10. Laura, I just left a comment on your post today. Thank you for sharing your process.

    Love this feeling of connection you evoke. Yes, feeling a part of the world wide web, online, in nature, within one self, within a sangha, with friends, and family, at work, . . . Being one.

  11. Yes, Robert talked about Ruth several times today. I thought of you meditating in the desert and it reminded me to read Sandy's book.

    My grandmother is out of the hospital and recovered from that, but while she was there they found a mass in her chest. We will see what is to come. It is quite a journey.

  12. Much metta to you and your grandmother. You are so fortunate to have each other. Have you thought of writing about your journey with her? :)

  13. great list :) here's mine:

    -to eat healthier (no milk, more veggies/fruits, vitamins, nothing processed)
    -to keep good posture and stretch on a daily basis
    -to do a seated meditation at least once a day
    -to be more mindful & kind to myself and everyone I encounter

    wishing you a wonderful new year <3

  14. Oh! yes, the body also. I am rather good with that though, and no need to make a resolution. It comes naturally.

    I wish you too a great new year, emptied of all that clutters the mind and heart.

    Much metta.

  15. Have I thought of writing about my journey with my grandmother? Yes indeed. I am trying to write a memoir. :) Thus the creative non-fiction writing program (not only writing about that, but among other things).

  16. Beautiful! I have not heard of any books telling the story of a grandchild's journey like that.