A thought to carry

I saw the Dalai Lama once in D.C. and the man made  a significant impact on my life. He was so bubbly without being superficial, a fountain of positive, thoughtful, inspiring vibes.

I have read several of his books and others about Buddhist teachings, taking what fits within the context of my Christian upbringing, my life experience and what little wisdom I might have gleaned from my own hard knocks and the kindness of others.

A concept that eluded my intellectual grasp for some time was that of emptiness. I had a hard time not thinking of nothingness, if you’ll forgive the double negative. On the contrary, though, it represents the extent to which everything is interwoven, part of oneness, so that our perception of individuality, of the self and of uniqueness is illusory. Things are empty of individual identity, as I understand it.

So I want to share this excerpt from a book of “daily wisdom” by the Dalai Lama. It expresses this thought far better than I ever could–

“Emptiness should be understood in the context of dependent arising, and it should evoke a sense of fullness, of things created by causes and conditions. We shouldn’t think that the self is something that is originally there and then eliminated in meditation; in fact, it is something that never existed in the first place.”


About admin

I am a writer. And a musician/songwriter. And a husband/father. I love good beer, the outdoors, the embrace of family, the company of true friends, the telling of a good story and the inner peace derived from quiet reflection in solitude. Recently I have specialized in beer writing. My most recent adventure is "Virginia Beer: A Guide from Colonial Days to Craft's Golden Age" published fall 2018 by University of Virginia Press. In October 2014, "Richmond Beer: A History of Brewing in the River City" was published by History Press. "Charlottesville Beer: Brewing in Jefferson's Shadow," followed in January 2017. Send me an email at rvabeerguy@gmail.com. As you can see from this site, however, my interests are broader than beer. Spend time, leave a comment or just enjoy. Lee
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One Response to A thought to carry

  1. Kim Langford says:

    Hi Lee,
    Do you have a personal email address? Just got a bouceback from the one I have.

    I’ve been thinking about something a little similar: mindfulness, in the sense of giving your complete attention to whatever you’re doing. It’s very hard for me! I watched the the Parking Lot Movie, about the corner parking lot here in town, and this awesome guy says that parking 600 cars a day gives you the opportunity to do that each time with your complete attention. I’ve been walking dogs at the SPCA and trying to do that. I guess sometimes it’s life changes that bring these things more to mind.

    Hope you’re well.

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