I've been looking at time lines of Buddhism, and I came across this photo of all religions:
You can see my linking of timelines in my twitter feed.
I'm reading Mythology by Edith Hamilton, and I was looking at Greek timelines, and then I moved to Buddhist timelines. There's some amazing information out there, presented visually. I watched Ken Burn's documentary on baseball, so I've been thinking more about history. Of course his one on the Civil War is, I think, his best one, but the Jazz one is also awesome because there's nothing else like it. He can get a little stuck on Armstrong in my opinion. And his others documentaries are great too, the one on the Brooklyn Bridge is pretty good. He's really quite amazing, even if I was a bit bored at the beginning of the baseball one, at times. He puts it at a leisurely pace, he doesn't pack information in at a breakneck pace. These were all done before the internet took off, I think. I think now I'm used to being bombarded with information.
In a side note, seeing Bhante on Skype yesterday, in NYC, Aryaloka and Mexico City, was awesome. I didn't learn anything new (not the point anyway) but did have some human contact with him. I did however learn he likes Sea-Drift, from Leaves of Grass. I didn't know he liked Whitman. I'd just read that he didn't like Walden, so it's good to see he does like some American.
If I could have gotten one question to ask him, I would have asked him what it felt like when he went forth, that first step after he'd given all his stuff away, and went off into India. Must have been liberating and scary, exciting and worrisome. Where am I going to sleep tonight would be my first question. Going forth... awesome.
Not my weekend for my kids, and my partner was out of town, so I had some rare solitude. To make the most of it, I decided to have a practice day. Here was what I did:
Dedication puja from TBC puja book
Body scan from FBA
Mindfulness of Breathing (40 min)
Breakfast, walk, break time, read Dharma
Confession puja from the Sutra of Golden Light
Just Sitting (30 min)
Lunch, break time, read Dharma
Metta Meditation (40 minutes)
I read Thubten Chodron's book on the Chenrezig sadhana. In my order, you don't do the sadhana until you're been witnessed to be effectively going for refuge, but it doesn't hurt to read about it. I've wanted to read something from her. She's not a bad writer. I have a tanka of Chenrizig, that my wonderful partner gave me, and I look at it from time to time. Thubten Chodron's teacher also added in the eight point mind training to their lineage of practice, and I like that too, so I enjoyed reading about that. I've studied that on a GFR retreat, and even before that, so it's a text I treasure. I am so grateful for all the retreats I've been on. I don't have the money to go on the GFR retreat in California this year, but my heart goes out to those who will be on it this year, I'm sending you my best wishes.
It was a hot day yesterday, but I didn't turn on the AC until after the Metta meditation. For some reason when I meditate, the heat doesn't bother me as much. I think I get some sensory integration from meditation. I also get what my friend called, "coming out of warp speed," feeling in my head from meditating that much. It was only 3 meditation, but it was bolstered with a body scan and 2 pujas, and Dharma reading.
On my walk, aside from enjoying my body in motion, I look at the beautiful flowers people so kindly plant in front of their homes.
I felt a little lonely in the evening, but it was too late to connect with anyone. I could have made a phone call, but I just went to bed. My dreams intensify when I ramp up my practice, and that's always interesting.