Mindfulness is moment by moment practice. Sometimes we forget to be mindful and something will knock us upside the head to remind us.
The other day was Walk to School Wednesday and it was raining. My son’s elementary school has a program to encourage kids and their parents to walk to school (don’t even get me started on why they need this program), so once A MONTH, they encourage you to walk to school. Those who participate get a pencil.
Rumor has it that the kids with the most walk-to-school pencils at the end of the year get a bigger prize. I’m not going to go into a litany of how I never got driven to school, or how my parents claim that they walked halfway around the island of Oahu barefoot, or how my grandparents had to wake up before dawn to swim the Molokai channel to get to school. Let me just say that we walk to school on most days. But today it was raining and we slept in, and my youngest son decided that sitting on the toilet was silly when you can just go to the bathroom wherever you wanted, and I had a blog to post. You get the picture.
So I was thinking that we would just drive to the edge of school and say that we walked, so my son could still be in the running for the probably-non-existent big prize. Then it dawned on me: I was going to teach my son that it was ok to lie for a fricken pencil. At the tender age of 5, he would learn to be deceitful in order to manipulate the system to get what he wanted. Great parenting, Kozo.
Then I started to think about all these little lies we allow in order to get what we want. For example, for those of you whose kids force you to eat fast food…
—Sure, blame it on the kids
I’m trying to make a point here.
—Isn’t the point you are making about telling lies?
Shut up, before I go back to watching Big Bang Theory.
Anyhow, like I was saying, how many of us have gotten extra change or an extra order of french fries at the drive-thru? How many times have you driven back and corrected the mistake? On the other hand, how many of us have left the drive-thru and found that something we paid for was missing? How did you react?
“My actions are my only true belongings.” Thich Nhat Hahn
There is a lesson to be learned here. We often play games with ourselves and rationalize why it is ok for us to break the rules that we expect others to follow. In the bigger picture, all we are doing is cheating ourselves. I’m going to make it a point to always try to be honest. Or at least be mindful of when I am telling a white lie and know the reasons for doing so. I consider this my practice of putting one clean drop of water into my cup of murky liquid. Hopefully, after time, I will purify my life and cleanse those around me.
Thank you for reading, sharing, and/or smiling.
How do you purify your cup? Please share.
- Daily Meditation – Walking Meditation (balancebound.wordpress.com)