Posted by: mhelen37 | March 12, 2010

The Dalai Lama and my Foot!

Ha, that title makes me laugh!

I just finished reading the book The Art of Happiness by the DL and Howard Cutler.  All in all, a very good book, because it got me thinking.  I’m Catholic and a pretty good one, and I don’t know a ton about Buddhism, but wanted to learn a little more after reading an article in O magazine.  Oprah interviewed a Tibetan monk and the interview just intrigued me to learn more about these people.  I read the mag while on vacay, so that probably helped to spark my interest: I was relaxed and happy and wanted to learn more about these people who seem so calm.  Do you know anyone like that?  You know, the ones who always seem calm in the storm, don’t rush to make decisions or cave in to impulses, people who are quick to stop and think before they speak?  Well, I’m NOT one of them!  I’ve often thought that one of my strengths is my ability to quickly assess a situation and run through the various possible scenarios of future outcomes, discard those that are impossible and figure it all out.  I trust my intuition alot (and it has served me well), but I’d love to slow down a bit, be more thoughtful, and analyze things from other perspectives.  Anyhoo, this book is so interesting. 

I find that alot of what the DL says is true for me, as in I do believe his advice is dead-on and I’m pretty much following it  now.  The interesting point is the reasons behind his advice and my reasons are different.  Buddhists believe that humans basically want to be happy.  We need to recognize this in ourselves and others.  He goes on to say that helping others can make us happy.  Harming others will not increase our happiness.  Whereas, we would teach children to do no harm b/c it is morally right, he says we do no harm b/c ultimately it will make us happy.  Interesting, huh?  I know I’m paraphrasing and prob simplifying a ton, but there is so much to this book.  I need a book club discussion I guess!

Okay on to my foot.  The DL says that harmful emotions and feelings like anger and hatred actually have antidotes: patience and love…So I was feeling a ton of anger about my hurt foot the other night.  I was just about to run through all kinds of negative thoughts:  I can’t run, I’ll never run, I’ll get fat, I’ll need expensive orthotics blah blah blah….and then I stopped myself….Okay MH, let’s analyze this a bit–first of all, it’s only been 2 days. Secondly, I can still do other forms of training: elliptical, bike, etc.  Then I remembered that it wasn’t too long ago (3 years) when I hated running.  Maybe this injury is a gift to get me into another form of cross-training.  From there, I fantasized about my first triatholon! LOL thank DL! 

I went biking the next day w/the hub: over 10 miles and it was so enjoyable and low impact!  My foot is feeling a ton better (thanks to some leftover ibuprofen and rest).  I may try a run tomorrow, or I may rest it just a bit more-Should I dare to “tri” a swim?

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