Sunday, April 10, 2005

Present and accounted for

84,000 delusions
84,000 lights
84,000 joys abounding

Saturday (yesterday) was spent mowing my lawn (front and back), a neighbor's lawn (for free, front and back), re-edging the flower garden with red brick, picking up garbage left near the yard by neighborhood teenagers, sweeping and mopping the floors, cleaning the toilet, and reviewing the federal tax forms so they can be sent out promptly this week.

It can be very nice to choose to do what needs to be done and work at your own pace, focused on each task at hand, as opposed to feeling forced or rushed and not giving the work your full attention. The day's labor left me a little sore but very content today with something of a sunburn on my face, neck and arms, a little reminder to put on the sunblock next time.

Some yellow lillies have bloomed already and a few more are ready to make their perreniel appearance. Currently the sun is still shining even though it will set soon and I can hear a few new neighbors singing--birds that have nested in the tree near my open window. My rat terriers are chewing on their toys with intense focus.

Although it should be effortless, I find it necessary to frequently remind myself to be fully present each moment. Fully present while mowing. Fully present while gardening. Fully present while cleaning the toilet. Fully present playing with the dogs. Fully present while typing the words of this blog.

In the news people are still talking about the death of Pope John Paul II, the wedding of Prince Charles and Camilla Parker Bowles, anti-Japanese protests in China, the ongoing ethics problems of Tom "The Hammer" DeLay, Republican from Texas and Majority Leader. Not as much news about warnings over the potential for mass extinctions of primate species, or about the continuing human crisis in Sudan. These issues are not all distraction, but there is no need to carry them in active thought.

If the primate crisis is that important, look into what one person can do to help. The same with the rest. If you feel it really matters to your sense of responsibility to humanity and life on Earth, make time for it and use that time as wisely as possible. Meanwhile, what is in front of you? What about your own intimate connections to people and to the world around you? Does the laundry need done? Would a loved one appreciate a visit, a phone call, an e-mail? What about right here, right now?

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