Something odd happened to my Facebook TimeLine wall this week…it all but disappeared. I believe ZEN practice has merit and I aspire toward self-realization but I am not as prepared for non-existence as I thought.
Please notice in the above picture of my FB Wall there are no posts in the ‘NOW’ section because now is not now it’s MIA thus creating the Ghostly Affair with Facebook Time Line which I found really unnerving.
While it turned out to be a Facebook glitch associated with making an ‘interest’ list, I discovered something unexpected through the experience…
My mother and I clearly have opposite coping styles
My mother is an un-realised artist. What I mean is, she did not pursue her talent because she was discouraged as a child and youth. As an adult she is so self-critical that she never developed her gift.
My mother is a shy person, not entirely self-assured and she was not blessed or cursed (depending on one’s perspective) with my general Rhino-principle approach with life that first gave me courage to be a performing artist and now provides the moxie for making and selling my Hide A Heart gifts that say I love you. You could say my mother lives silently while I live out LOUD! (BTW: Did you know the color blue messages POSSIBILITY!)
Growing up, I noticed my mother would occasionally ‘doodle’ on paper but afterward dismiss her efforts with a shrug. Nevertheless, I could feel she felt a deep loss with every discard.
Years later I gave my mother a Buddha Board made with sheets of ZEN paper upon which one ‘painted’ with a beautiful sable bristle brush and water. A Buddha Board is for mastering the art of letting go, promoting the Zen concept of living in the moment by encouraging the user to value the present. I figured it would be the perfect ‘green’ gift because as the water dried the painting faded away which should fit right in with the way she always discarded her work—but she never opened the package.
Maybe after reading the package promotion, “Allow your self to ‘let go’ and not be concerned with each outcome—live for the moment and enjoy it”, she decided it was a concept outside her comfort zone. I mention this because I recently asked my mother if she would like to participate in a class to write her memoir. She sat quietly for some time then said, “No. There are too many things I prefer not to revisit and live through again.”
I believe in a little bit of magic
Remember the Magic Slate? You know the one with a wax-like bottom and a clear top sheet where you drew with a special pen-like instrument then pulled up the cello cover and presto—there was a clean top sheet upon which to begin again. After several drawings, and depending on how hard we pressed the plastic stylus, the wax on the bottom grew marred. In a metaphoric way the Magic Slate represented a similarity with life–mistakes are erasable on the top but often underneath the scars remain.
I think my mother is more a Magic Slate kind of person and I am working on being a Buddha Board kind of person, but clearly I have not reached Nirvana or having my Time Line Wall turn into a clean slate would not have been so unnerving.
However, as a parting thought let me repeat the following as a mantra-