Thursday, June 14, 2012

Disciplined Practice

Thursday, June 14, 2012:

It's a dark and stormy day. Lucky for me, the gardens outside the house are being watered by nature so I didn't need to add that task to my list of chores.

I joined Lucy on the front step for my mid-afternoon T'ai Chi Chih practice. Thunder rolled in the distance and trees swayed and danced (and cracked) in the tumultuous winds. Lucy kept her eye on me for the majority of my practice (a sign, I believe, that she felt uncomfortable with the rumbles and rustles of tree branches).

It felt exciting (and yes, a bit unnerving) to be practicing TCC in the anticipatory atmosphere of an approaching storm. Still, I made it through the entire form before the rain began to fall.

Now that I've completed my practice, I'm well aware of the stiff, sore shoulder muscles that still appear to be carrying buckets of water (based on my experience watering our large vegetable garden last night). Thank goodness my TCC practice made me aware of the tightness (which I can now stretch and loosen).

I finally read Sr. Antonia Cooper's June 2012 Newsletter today (she's the TCC Guide). There's a wonderful quote from Dogen included in its contents:

"There are thousands upon thousands of students who have practiced meditation and obtained its fruits.

"Do not doubt its possibilities because of the simplicity of the method.
"If you can not find the truth right where you are, where else do you expect to find it?"

Yes, where? Disciplined practice (that oft-repeated word) will guide the way....

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