Tuesday, January 12, 2010

today and every other day...

my photos today are from the beautiful tea blossom that Sue gave me, made in Gwen's lovely glass teapot. It was a positive phantaglorium of blossom and tendril and jasmine scent. Ah!

Discipline is one of the six paramitas - called Siila (pronounced Shila). There is joy in discipline and I know it and there is resistance to discipline and I know that too. Discipline is like the fence surrounding a corner lot backyard in a busy corner of town. It allows the children in us to run free like hooligans while remaining contained and safe. The point being that we have more freedom with the habit of discipline than we do without it. Therefore more joy.
I am a flower child. I marched on the Parliament Buildings with signs that urged Peace. I sang we shall, we shall, we shall not be moved, just like the tree that stands beside the riiiiiiiiver, we shalllll not be moved. I brought my babies to L'Hibou to hear folk singers like Joni and Phil Ochs. I went to dances in the honey house at 'The Farm' and fought for universal daycare. What I never wanted was anyone telling me that I had to do something today and every other day (except for the pill - that made sense!), not even me! Now I know that freedom is just another word for nothing left to lose and I embrace discipline and order and ritual and even, Buddha help me, organizing. Though, come to think of it - that was a pretty hip word too when it came to unions.
Today I did my meditation, I walked the dog and I did more than two hours on my book. And I felt free and good during most of it. Even though I 'had' to! I spent some fun time with my grandchildren, who are, bless their wily little hearts - true wondrous hooligans! And now I'm going to play. What you may ask? I'm going to look up knitted afghan patterns on the web and in my knitting books. I'm going to read a book on adolescent girls by therapist Martha B. Straus and I'm going to make my bed with clean sheets and go to bed early. Or maybe I'll watch a movie!


Galen Kindley--Author said...

How DO you have such lovely days? You manage to mesh tranquility and the most pleasant of simple pleasures with accomplishment--and apparently you do so seamlessly. I like to think I’m organized, and maybe a touch disciplined, but neither provides the same result it does for you.

Best Wishes Galen.
Imagineering Fiction Blog

Sophie said...

Discipline: i will befriend you yet (or somewhow manage to sneek you past my rebel child.)
Thanks for the words Jan. Your timing is impeccable as usual.

Jan Morrison said...

Galen - the giveaway word in your comment is "apparently". It's that old bugabear - comparing my insides to your outsides - or in this case the other way around. Truth is I had lots of less than tranquil moments today -frustrations with my writing, my guy and I grousing about how each other fills the dishwasher, me screaming at my grandkids to quit screaming etc...and an undercurrent of real anxiety about my relationships with my step-kids...so!!?? Thanks for stopping by Galen - I so like your blog and I love it when you visit mine! Now I'm going to go watch Kids in the Hall! Yay!
Sophie - hi dolly! You will befriend discipline - it is where grace and joy hang out - I swear!

Watery Tart said...

I love how you've framed discipline! That is perfect--that approached with the right frame of mind what it is is boundaries that give freedom... it's like the safe word in S&M!

I'm younger than a flower child by a little, but I grew up in Idaho, so I was close enough. (runs about 15 years behind there), then I went to college in Eugene Oregon, where it is STILL 1968... so my inner rebel has been well nurtured, and still this rings true.

And that DOES sound like a perfect day... mix of totally down time, productive time, time with people you love (who happen to be a little wild).

Patricia Stoltey said...

I often say I wish I were more disciplined -- now I see why. This feels right, Jan. Nice post.

Rayna M. Iyer said...

This is such a beautiful post, Jan. Totally agree with you - discipline sets you free, only I have never come close to articulating is as well as you do when you mention kids playing safely within a boundary.