We hiked to the top of the Vietnam Memorial Trail today, our goal the traditional resolution day usually held at Bill's bench in Eugene. Seeking a lookout in the Phoenix area, I discovered the new location (you can find a Facebook post under the same site name with photos).
It seems that a common focus for us both is aging. I have found that this phase of my life results in the inevitable consideration of dying. In the beginning these considerations are uncomfortable, it seems. Then I discovered this Saguaro which I expect in around two hundred years old, and could not help but be effected by the grace with which it lives out life. It is my desire to find the same serenity.
We are told that it is our grasping that creates suffering. We have a good experience, and make every attempt to hold it in place, already knowing that our experience, like a pendulum will swing back in the opposite direction, We imagine this a swing back toward a "bad" experience, and, of course, do all that we are capable of to prevent it. This could only be described as hopeless, the effort the very definition of control. You just cannot do it. There is no controlling life, and yet....
Today, sitting on a bench at the top of the trail, with a view of the valley in all directions; we were both struck by the rich, blue sky. Buddhist tradition uses the sky as a metaphor for consciousness, ever present despite the weather, or how many clouds might try to hinder it's presence.
It is my hope that I can let go of control. That I might live more as the sky.