(photo by Anandi)
We got in late last night, and were pretty wiped out from the travel, so decided to make today a rolling into the retreat day, and not the rigorous and structured schedule we planned out. We're going to flow with how we feel. But we are having retreat oatmeal. Had to move the car so I didn't get a ticket.
Part of the duo home retreat is that we read to each other. When Anandi woke up I read her a Noah Levine interview from Tricycle. He started Refuge Recovery, which has a meeting in NYC. I should probably go to support my recovery, and working with people in recovery. I read his book Dharma Punx. Anandi read his second one, I could read that one. I recently got Eight Step Recovery: Using the Buddha's Teachings to Overcome Addiction. I stalled pretty quickly on that one, but I need to charge up my kindle so I can read that and The Purpose and Practice of Buddhist Meditation: A Source Book of Teachings.
I read section 5.2.4 of The Essential Sangharakshita about natural versus conventional morality, and how the mental states behind actions is a focus of Buddhist ethics. It's an excerpt from The Bodhisattva Ideal: Wisdom and Compassion in Buddhism, which is an awesome book in it's own right. I think that was the first book we were reading when I originally started mitra study in the FWBO.
Hearing the words aloud helps to connect to the tradition that was originally oral.
We sat for 20 minutes of mindfulness of breathing. I had monkey mind of course, and my legs were not used to sitting.
I love talking about meditation experience with Anandi. I had a hard time not rearranging the books on my book shelf, they're all out of order.
I'm calling this the Hansel and Gretel retreat, because we're going to see the opera on DVD and live at the Met.
We're not strict yet about not watching TV or using technology for anything other than writing and reading. I feel a strong urge to clean the house strangely. I'm like space, I abhor a vacuum. I'll read non-Dharma today. Since we're doing this retreat with both of us we can have any form we want. I want structure and scheduling tomorrow and after that. We get more done that way. But with the travel I really need a transition day. Must be kind to ourselves.
We're going to have curried chick pea salad for lunch. Last time I went backpacking and totally bonked, when we were done I remember eating chick peas from a can I left in the car. That was really yummy. First few bites anyway.