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If You Can Practice Even When Distracted, You Are Well Trained | Reflections

If You Can Practice Even When Distracted, You Are Well Trained | Reflections

April 2nd

#22 – If you can practice even when distracted, you are well trained.

Pema’s Commentary – If you are a good horseback rider, your mind can wander but you don’t fall off your horse. In the same way, whatever circumstances you encounter, if you are well trained in meditation, you don’t get swept away by emotions. Instead they perk you up and your awareness increases.

I thought that Murphy’s Law would have come into play today, but thankfully it didn’t! I naturally found myself being mindful of my rest, my meals, the personal and other work I engaged in, and now sitting here and writing how the day was with this mind-training slogan in mind. I know I have had the opposite of a day like this where everything that could go wrong, does.

At first I did have that thought, but as I allowed the day to unfold in the manner I described, there was no need for any judgment. I did drop something in the kitchen, one of the cats decided to knock a clock off the shelf, and I made a few mistakes in a recording I made, but to all there was a smoothness to it. It was the fruits of my practice after many decades. No need to yell, to curse or to blame, but to simply be in the present and move forward with what needed to be done.

As I reflect on this, what a timesaver mindfulness is. We see what occurs, we accept and allow it to be, do what we need to do,  and then we move onward. For me, it is when I allow whatever it is to become as sticky as molasses in my mind that I see the day drag on. Of course, the day will entail one thing after another continually to throw me off balance. And that I believe, comes from not being aware and present to all that is.

It’s been a calm day and I love it that way!  I have great gratitude to my practice and who knows what tomorrow will bring, but I trust my practice will sustain me.


Pema Chödrön’s Compassion Cards – This practice is lojong (mind-training slogans) and they are powerful reminders on how to awaken our hearts. They are also found in “The Compassion Book.” You choose the cards at random, read the commentary, and then try to live by the meaning of the slogan throughout the day.

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