I have been working on a post for days about forgiveness, but since it isn’t done, I want to share some of this other thing I am doing, my series of images and quotes from Thich Nhat Hanh. I LOVE playing with color and words and beauty and mindfulness – it’s my favorite part of the day. A few days ago, I wrote a post that, along with celebrating my acceptance to The Wellness Universe Facebook resource directory, shared the first of my series of Facebook tributes to the work of Thich Nhat Hanh – the Vietnamese Buddhist monk whose teachings have influenced my life so profoundly.
Just learning about “Conscious SMILING” has helped me so much over the years…it is my go-to solution for stress. Once I had practiced for a time, all I needed do was remember to b.r.e.a.t.h.e (ahhhh) and turn the corners of my mouth gently up, and I would find peace. My body remembers”home” through its neural pathways and is happy to mindfully rest there.
Today’s quote has to do with asking ourselves who we really are, at essence. I am clear I am not my body. I believe I am more than that. My body dies. Do “I” die then too? I ask, “Am I really my ego, my work, my family, the experiences of my lifetime, the things I hope I am remembered for,” am I my volition, the thoughts in my head – or am I perhaps the ageless energy, the infinite unity of the universe, the eternal presence within expressing now as Gerry in time/space and tomorrow as something else?
I am not settled on the ultimate question of “Who am I, really?” Of course I am made of energy, everything is – matter is just energy slowed down to what appears to be a solid state. When I breathe and smile consciously for instance, when I move my focus within, I experience a Love-Presence within me, and I think that my consciousness is an aspect of a Universal consciousness, slowed down for my present experience.
But I wonder, “What happens to my “Gerry-ness” when I die? Do I just disappear as the wave does as just part of the ocean of life, or is my consciousness, my “Gerry-ness” recognized and greeted in love and freedom on the other side after I shed this body? If all things are possible in the quantum field, is it possible that my ancestors live somewhere in the universe as specks of conscious energy? Will I? Have they been recycled and become someone else as some believe? Will I? Did they just stop existing except through my memories, maybe my children’s memories?
My ego does not want to just “not be.” And although I am no one special, I want to be remembered, I want it to have made a difference that Gerry was here. I am 73 and expect to be here another 20 or 30 years, but no one knows for sure when they will draw their last breath. Then what? Opinions differ, you know, and does it really matter, since it’s outside of my control, and I have learned how live happy and at peace with myself and others while I am here?
Ah, this ego. Who is this “I?” These grandmotherly musings. What do you think?
Many thanks to Rose-Maries Pictures for permission to use her magical photos in my spiritual work. If you ever just need a restful place to meditate, head on over to use any one of her photos as a marvelous focus.