Friday, August 19, 2011

Dancing through life

Watching two accomplished ballroom dancers is a thrill. They move in graceful, fluid motion almost as a single entity. One leads; the other follows. If there is no cooperation then harmony is broken with both trying to lead and the motion is jerky and chaotic. If neither leads there is no motion. If you look at what's happening in Washington right now you can see the non-dance of chaos. Whether we move or we don’t, dance can only occur if there is a floor to dance on. I’ve never seen a pair of dancers move through thin air.

In a certain sense we are like those dancers. We move in relationship with others across the floor of life. Our movements are either fluid and graceful or chaotic depending on how we cooperate. It’s a matter of give and take. Two gives or two takes end in stalemate. We have invented a saying to express this dance. It is called “What goes around, comes around.” We reap what we sow. In Buddhism this is called karma and works the same way.

The floor beneath the dance is of course the immovable foundation of our life — our mind. If it moved the dancers would be shaken. But since it is stable the dance of discrimination can go on: One half leading, the other half following. And the dance can only happen with these three things—The immovable floor and the two partners. When all three function in harmony the dance of life is a beautiful thing
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