Time spent in idle chit chat
Today there was more of the same at work. I didn't try to play both sides so everyone would like me. Instead, I listened and reminded myself to stay neutral. I was also able to particpate in a little e-mail banter with my sorority sisters. I have been in a sorority for just over a year now. Being in a sorority forces me to look at the place of friends in my life. It gives me the opportunity to challenge myself in an area that I have neglected since my daughter was born. I have never been one to have more than a few close friends in my life at a given time... typically less than five people that I call somewhat frequently. I am not a phone person. I can't spend hours on end on the phone jabbering away every day. I don't have time for it. But I do enjoy the company and conversation of good friends. Last year when I gained 14 line sisters and a worldwide collective of sorority sisters, I was a bit taken aback. I can't say that I have fully taken advantage of the opportunity to move beyond my comfort zone and expand my circle of friends and confidantes. Today's entry in the Digital Buddha Vacana is an infamous exchange between Buddha and Ananda on friendship as the holy life:
Ven. Ananda said to the Blessed One, "This is half of the holy life, lord: admirable friendship, admirable companionship, admirable camaraderie."
"Don't say that, Ananda. Don't say that. Admirable friendship, admirable companionship, admirable camaraderie is actually the whole of the holy life. When a monk has admirable people as friends, companions, and comrades, he can be expected to develop and pursue the noble eightfold path.
If the whole of the spiritual life is good friends, I am not living it fully. I could stretch myself a bit and begin to engage my sorors and my Sangha... bringing more presence and attention to my relationship with both of these new groups in my life.
Particular resistance(s) to my practice
I'm still disorganized, and I've developed a serious resistance to getting up on time in the morning. My alarm goes off at 4:45 every morning. I lie there listening to NPR until I fall asleep again. Then I wake up at 6:15 intending to jump out of bed and scramble to get out of the house at 7:00. Then I continue to lie there until 6:30 or 6:40 when I know I'm really in trouble—no matter how much I rush, I'll be late.
What troubled me most today
I'm too burned out to care about my late problem. This troubles me. You can't course correct when you don't care about staying on course. It is hard enough to remain integrous when you want to... it is damned near impossible to do so when you are indifferent.
What made me happy today
Two more days and I'm on vacation for the rest of the year. I also resolved a challenge at work reducing the amount of work I have to do to complete one of my projects by at least 50%. I watched myself as the bickering and in-fighting went on around me. I tried to be mindful of what I said. I paid attention instead of falling into the usual trap... participating in gossip and idle chit chat.